omnivore recordings Archive

Hundred-word Reviews for May 2022, Part 2

I present five more reviews, in capsule form. Three of these are new releases; two are archival titles. All are deserving of deeper investigation. Alice Austin – Goodnight Euphoria Los Angeles-based singer-songwriter Austin has crafted a supremely satisfying slab of rock with Goodnight Euphoria. Her innate sense of pop songwriting is combined with expertly textured

Album Review: The Loud Family and Anton Barbeau – What if it Works?

When two formidable talents get together, one doesn’t know quite what to expect. Auteurs who are accustomed to having things their own way — and who have long since earned the right to do so – can’t automatically be expected to play well with others in a collaborative venture. The product of that creative alliance

Album Review: The Left Banke – Strangers on a Train

When the terms “baroque pop” or “baroque rock” come up in conversation, discussion of The Left Banke is assuredly to follow. While the group scored only a few hits – “Walk Away Reneé,” “Pretty Ballerina” and the lesser-known but equally wonderful “She May Call You Up Tonight” – they established a stylistic template that other

Reviving the Old Guard: The Palace Guard, Part Two

Continued from Part One… Far better was the A-side of The Palace Guard’s second single, the moody, minor-key “A Girl You Can Depend On.” The flip side of that single – released as a promo disc only – was a credibly soulful cover of Wilson Pickett’s “If You Need Me.” Moser says that recording sessions

Reviving the Old Guard: The Palace Guard, Part One

Emitt Rhodes’ pre-pre-fame band The Palace Guard gets a career-spanning compilation Emitt Rhodes was something of a cult figure in music. The singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer never achieved widespread commercial success or fame, but his music inspired and influenced many who would follow him. Hailed in his early solo artist years as a “one-man

Album Review: Explorer Tapes

As someone who follows such things – and as such ought to know better – I nevertheless continue to be amazed whenever I learn about a promising act that recorded an album only to find it shelved. It’s the musical version of that iconic final scene at the end of Raiders of the Lost Ark,

Album Review: Alex Chilton — Boogie Shoes

If there’s such a thing as an obscure legend, Alex Chilton is one. While he was in fact the lead singer in a popular ‘60s pop group (Box Tops) and part of supremely influential Memphis band Big Star, his name isn’t one that’s familiar to the casual music listener. And even among those who appreciate

Album Review: Laura Nyro — Go Find the Moon

Standing in sharp contrast to the sharp and seasoned performer of 1994 found on Trees of the Ages is the Laura Nyro heard on Go Find the Moon: The Audition Tape. Recorded in 1966 when she was seeking a record deal, she displayed plenty of potential, but her talent was in a rawer state. She

Album Review: Laura Nyro — Trees of the Ages

Laura Nyro was a talent of staggering dimensions. Not only was the New York singer-songwriter possessed of a preternatural ability to write enduing melodies – many of which were hits for other artists – but she was a powerful presence on her own recordings. The controversial and notorious alleged-disaster of a performance at Monterey Pop

Album Review: Mumps — Rock & Roll This, Rock & Roll That

American pop culture consumers of a certain age (aka television viewers) will recall An American Family, a groundbreaking PBS documentary series that first aired in 1973. Setting aside the fact that the program is to blame for the subsequent rise of “reality” (sic and ugh) television, it was nonetheless important in many ways. One of