reissue Archive

Album Reviews: ‘Richard Pryor’ and ‘Craps (After Hours)’

Comedy albums are unique in the album world. Unlike music, for most listeners, they’re a one-and-done affair. You may well have bought Robin Williams’ Reality: What a Concept when it was released in 1979, but if you’re like me, you listened, enjoyed, and then moved on, rarely taking it off the shelf for another spin.

Album Review: Keb Darge Presents The New Mastersounds

As the leaders of the funk-soul boogaloo revival, The New Mastersounds have churned out along and impressive string of deep funk/groove albums, exploring the part of the musical Venn diagram in which jam-band and dance music intersect. With impeccable taste and even better chops, the foursome originally from Leeds UK (but now based in Colorado)

Album Review: The Mommyheads — Coming Into Beauty

If you’re not familiar with the Mommyheads, try this: imagine a cross between the quirky intelligence of They Might Be Giants, the sophisticated use of studio-as-instrument of Talking Heads, and the enduring pop sensibility of Todd Rundgren (more on that last bit presently). The Brooklyn band was active from the tail-end of the 1980s through

Album Review: Snowglobe — Our Land Brains

The groups associated with the Athens, Georgia-based Elephant 6 Collective are a mixed bag. While all share a certain musical sensibility, Neutral Milk Hotel and Of Montreal each appeal to a slightly different subset of listeners than does Olivia Tremor Control (my personal favorite). And what is and is not an Elephant 6 band is

Album Review: Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings – Dap Dippin

Curated by Eddie Roberts of the New Mastersounds, Rare Sounds is a new subscription service that unearths gems from various genres, reissuing them on vinyl. The first round of releases included The Greyboy Allstars’ West Coast Boogaloo and the debut from Roberts’ band, Keb Darge Presents The New Mastersounds. The third record in that first

Album Review: Breakestra — The Live Mix, Part 1

A central component of some of the best hip-hop is the repurposing of tasty licks, breaks or other snippets from previously-record music, creating something new out of the old. Los Angeles-based Breakestra takes things a step farther (or backwards, depending on your point of view). However you describe it, it’s inspired. Breakestra’s debut album The

Album Review: Pink Floyd – Delicate Sound of Thunder (2020 expanded reissue)

Twenty-two years after its initial release, it’s worth considering just how remarkable an album Pink Floyd’s Delicate Sound of Thunder was in 1988. Though Pink Floyd had released 13 albums, their catalog consisted almost completely of studio material. Only half of 1969’s double-LP Ummagumma showcased the band live in concert. So for fans who wanted

Always Finish What You Started: Van Dyke Parks on ‘Orange Crate Art’ (Part 3 of 3)

Continued from Part Two… Parks recalls a visit to a friend in rural Virginia, nearly 2500 miles due East from southern California. “I went past, Galax, where the Old Fiddlers Convention is held,” Parks remembers. “It inspired me to write ‘My Jeanine,’ [set] in a place that doesn’t exist and a time I haven’t forgotten.”

Always Finish What You Started: Van Dyke Parks on ‘Orange Crate Art’ (Part 2 of 3)

Continued from Part One… Parks recalls how the germ of the project came about in or around 1990. “I had a piano exercise, and it was fun for me,” he says. “Because I am a pianist, most of my songs derive from the keyboard.” Seeking a name for the exercise, he came up with “Orange

Always Finish What You Started: Van Dyke Parks on ‘Orange Crate Art’ (Part 1 of 3)

Though he never sought the role – nor does he wear it comfortably – Van Dyke Parks is something of a cult figure in music. An idiosyncratic musical storyteller of all he surveys, remembers and imagines, Parks filters his ideas through a distinctly American sensibility, one that exists resolutely outside of the rock and pop