Saturday, August 31, 2019

Ride: UK Artist Spotlight

Oxford's own dream-pop band Ride has been on a magnificent roll in the last couple of years. 2017 saw the release of Weather Diaries, their first LP in over 20 years. Last year we got an EP treat (just like the old days of the British single/EP...sigh...I miss them) called Tomorrow's Shore. And just two weeks ago their six full length dropped.

This Is Not A Safe Place is 12 tracks of shoegaze joy. All of the things I've loved about Ride are present on this album...the shimmery guitars...the expansive soundscapes...pop love...vocals that make you shiver...

Here is a taste...

Saturday, August 24, 2019

Frank Turner Releases His Second Masterpiece (And Gets Me Too'd by Intorlerant Assholes For It)

Most of the time when Frank Turner makes a new record, I'm like "Meh." I get them all, of course, because I have to maintain my Brit street cred but I invariably think they are just alright. The exception, of course, is the 2011 release England Keep My Bones which is a fucking masterpiece.

His latest release is No Man's Land and it's easily as good if not better than Bones. I put in on the other day when I went out for a jog and was completely overwhelmed by it. The music was far more interesting than his last few records. Each song told very haunting and moving stories, the most compelling of which is "Silent Key." I'm not going to spoil what it's about because the listener will get a better experience going in cold. 

When I got done with my run, I went home to check out what NME and other reviewers had said. Lo and behold, I found Will Richards scathing review and sadly shook my head. I honestly had no idea that Turner was trying to lift up unheard female voices with this record although the title should have given me a clue. I just really liked it a lot.

But I guess now I'm not supposed to like it because apparently talented men aren't supposed to make music about heroic women anymore. Turner made the mistake of trying to explain himself which you NEVER EVER do with this very small but very loud faction within the Me Too Movement. They are massively intolerant, almost to the point of totalitarianism, and feed on men trying to be earnest. These intolerants play internet troll games to go for the social media "win," whatever the fuck that is worth. 

I could really care less what a very small percentage of fake woke people think on the interwebs. No Man's Land is Frank Turner's second masterpiece. Go buy it. 

Here is "Silent Key."

Friday, August 23, 2019

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Marika Hackman: I'm Not Where You Are (Track of the Week)

Hampshire's own Marika Hackman has just dropped her third full length album. Any Human Friend has many wonderful tracks but the best, by far, is "I'm Not Where You Are." The chorus hook alone has my head spinning but the guitar solo sends me to another planet! Check it out!!

Sunday, August 18, 2019

Kaiser Chiefs: Duck (Album of the Week)

The lads from Leeds are back with their seventh full-length record entitled Duck. This release sees a return to form with all the classic exuberance and bravado that has been typical of the Kaiser Chiefs. All 11 tracks are monstrously awesome. Here is one of my favorites...

Saturday, August 17, 2019

U2: 11 O'Clock Tick Tock and Surrender

Ever wake up in the morning and have a song stuck in your head? Well, I had two old U2 chestnuts rattling around in my noggin this AM and I just had to share them. Both are by Dublin's own U2. The first is the non-album single 11 O'Clock Tick Tock, released just prior to their first album (Boy). I first heard this track when the live record Under A Blood Red Sky Came Out in late 1983. Here is the video of that performance.

The other track bouncing around in my head is from the War album. Surrender is one of my all-time favorite U2 songs. Here is a performance from Germany of that track.

Enjoy my earworms today!

Saturday, August 10, 2019

Lloyd Cole: The Over Under (Track of the Week)

Buxton's own Lloyd Cole has charmed the pants off of me for over three decades. My soundtrack to the 1980s saw Rattlesnakes in regular rotation. That album came out my senior year in high school and was a staple of our dances. His latest effort is Guesswork, an eight-track wonder that is guaranteed to please many a fine folk far and wide. Here is the opening track...

Friday, August 2, 2019

Cuco: Para Mi (Album of the Week)

Hawthorne, California's own Cuco has just released a stunning debut of a record. Para Mi simply shimmers summer, lounge, chill out, and Burt Bacharach. Each track paints a mindscape that is external and universal yet still manages to sound private as if we are all in his bedroom with him creating this low fi masterpiece. Or a Holiday Inn lounge in the early 1970's.

Here is a great sample of what you will experience...