1: Ministry – Stigmata
Buy The Land of Rape and Honey
2: Time Zone – World Destruction
Buy World Destruction
3: New Order – Temptation
Buy Temptation 12″
4: Cabaret Voltaire – Sensoria
5: Captain Sensible – Wot
When you’re playing in band, every once in a while you have one those nights where the planets just align or something and the songs you play end up a step beyond where you thought they would ever go. Those are the nights you remember the most. Here’s a song from one of those nights, a blistering, set closing cover of Tom Waits Jockey Full Of Bourbon. Rock on.
I’ll admit I’m somehwat chasing the bus on this one, as the new Iron and Wine album has been out for a couple months now yet somehow I managed to avoid hearing any of it until this past weekend. The dozen songs on The Shepherd’s Dog are a fantastic blend of warm hypnotic percussion meshed with softly picked guitars and keyboards, all strung together masterfully by Sam Beam’s vocals. Boy With A Coin is the first single from the album and I haven’t been able to get it off repeat the past few days. The handclaps woven into the percussion give it such a spiritual mesmerizing feel that I just can’t get enough of.
Clear Tigers is essentially a one man recording project of Arkansas native Nathan Akin. After spending some time studying with minimalist composer La Monte Young in New York, Nathan began work on his own songs. The end result was the Brutal album. Four of the songs were initally released in advance of the album on an EP on Catbird Records to much positive acclaim.
I’ve been listening to the Brutal album for a couple weeks now trying to come up with the words to describe it’s sound. The best I could do is, if you like The Magnetic Fields, Violent Femmes and Bright Eyes it kind of sounds like all of them but not really like any of them. The album runs the gamut from wistful acoustic numbers like Together, to full on rockers like Summertime and Won’t Be Back. One of the things I found especially impressive is that even though Nathan recorded all of the parts himself with the exception of some drums on a couple songs, it doesn’t have the sterile, overworked, put together piece by piece feel that many one man projects have. There is a great loose band vibe feeling throughout.
To play out live Nathan has assembled a band made up of Guitarist Jeremy Hunt Schoenerr-Lachance,bassist David Sanderson, drummer Tim Traynor and vocalists Catherine Herrick and Lisa Baker. They have a couple shows coming up this week in New York City so you can get on out and see them for yourself.
Nov 27 2007 10:30P Luna Lounge NY, New York
Nov 30 2007 11:00P Pete’s Candy Store Brooklyn, New York
Here’s a couple of hot tracks for you that I received in my inbox last week, from the posthumously released new record by Sterling Harrison. There’s not a lot of information about Sterling out on the web that I could find to write something informative, so here’s Mark Deming’s take from the allmusic guide:
Sterling Harrison was a journeyman soul singer who cut his first record in 1955 and spent years on the road, playing clubs across the country and frequently opening for bigger names. Eventually, Harrison ended up in Los Angeles, where he sang at hole-in-the-wall bars and soul food joints on the city’s south side through most of the ’80s and ’90s. Harrison cut a handful of records over the years for labels both big and small, most of which didn’t indicate he was anything special, but a tiny handful of fans were of the opinion he was the greatest unknown soul singer on Earth, and in 2001 a few of them decided to help Harrison make the album they knew he was capable of. And it turns out those fans were right on the money; produced by Los Lobos saxman Steve Berlin and comedy writer and soul music maven Eddie Gorodetsky, South of the Snooty Fox is a revelation, a thrilling set of raw but accomplished old-school R&B that suggests at the dawn of the 21st century Harrison may have been the finest exponent of the music’s classic style alive. While Harrison’s voice is remarkable enough — a strong baritone that could slide into a clear falsetto or a rumbling bass at will — it was his sense of phrasing and showman’s ability to fill a song with energy and sheer belief that really sets him apart, and hearing him strut through a set of lesser-known R&B classics such as “You Left the Water Running,” “There’s a Rat Loose in My House” and “I’ll Take Care of You” with the swagger and spunk of a 20-year-old is enough to turn nearly anyone into a believer. (A moving cover of Tom Waits’ “The House Where Nobody Lives” shows he was just as adept with newer material.) Nearly as remarkable is the accompaniment by Harrison’s live band, the New Breed Band, who are dazzlingly tight and funky throughout. Given Harrison’s failure to catch a break throughout his career, it’s sad but appropriate that shortly after he finished work on South of the Snooty Fox, the singer was diagnosed with cancer, as was his excellent lead guitar player Larry Johnson, and both passed away in 2005 while the album sank into limbo. Thankfully, Hacktone Records has seen fit to give South of the Snooty Fox a long belated release, and anyone who has a taste for classic soul owes it to themselves to give it a spin — it may have taken 45 years, but when he cut these sessions Harrison finally got to show the world what he was could do, and it’s pretty wonderful stuff. – Mark Deming, allmusic.com
MP3: Sterling Harrison – Don’t You Mess With My Money
MP3: Sterling Harrison – I’ll Take Care Of You
Buy South Of The Snooty Fox
On this biggest travel weekend of the year, people are driving, flying, walking, basically doing whatever it takes to get home. For some reason trains have always held a certain fascination for songwriters. Here’s 5 odes to that traditional mode of transportation. Happy travels.
1: The Monkees – Last Train To Clarksville
Buy Greatest Hits
2: Neko Case – Train From Kansas City
Buy The Tigers Have Spoken
3: James Brown – Night Train
Buy Star Time
4: Velvet Underground – Train Round The Bend
Buy Peel Slowly And See
5: Ryan Adams & The Cardinals – Trains
Buy Jacksonville City Nights
Thank You !
…to all of you who stop by here everyday to read ,listen and comment, and to all of the artists whose work has been featured here over the past year or so. Enjoy your day wherever you may be and safe travels to all.
Here’s a few Thanksgiving treats from some of our blogging friends for you today
Aquarium Drunkard keeps the tradition alive with his annual airing of Alice’s Restaurant.
Pitchfork and Jagjaguwar records bring the first taste of of the new Black Mountain record In The Future, coming in January.
MP3: Black Mountain – Tyrants
Buy In The Future
Our friend The Duke over at The Late Greats left us with a nice mix of Thanksgiving tunes before heading off for the Holiday.
And what would Thanksgiving be without leftovers. Well, Casey at The College Crowd Digs Me doesn’t exactly have leftovers but does have a nice writeup on the Kansas classic Leftoverture.
Big thanks to You Ain’t No Picasso for tipping me off to a hot new song by Bag Of Songs favorites Creeping Weeds. The band BOAT asked people to submit covers of their songs and have been posting them on their website all this past month.
Here’s Creeping Weeds excellent take on on (I’m A) Donkey for Your Love and in case you’re not familiar with it, BOAT‘s version as well. Rock on.
Sounds Like ……..really nice man…..it’s like old but new all at the same time……. dirty, dancey and jangley ..$%@” like if a marshall was cranked to13 in a dirty hotel after midnight with the lights off..
Believe it or not that somewhat cryptic bit is pretty accurate. Garnet and Snow Keim claim Hank Williams and Brian Wilson as their early influences, but a couple listens to this disc seem to reveal an encyclopedic knowledge of all that is rock and roll. They can be raw and ragged like Iggy Pop on the blistering opener Two Times with its staccatto shouted chorus of “just shake shake shake shake shake shake shake”. They can also turn up the guitar jangle and harmonies on songs like Don’t Bother Me or Run. Shades of The Kinks and early Who are just as evident in their influences as The Cure and U2. But they never succumb to mimicry, they forge their influences into a sound all their own, familiar yet new all at the same time. Thirteen short, sweet, shots of song clocking in at around 35 minutes, reviving and redefining the lost art of the three minute pop song.
The band is on a pretty extensive US tour through the end of the year, so there’s plenty of chances to catch them ripping it up live somewhere near you.
The Blakes :
Garnet Keim — guitar, vocals
Snow Keim — bass, vocals
Bob Husak — drums
Upcoming Tour Dates
Nov 19 2007 5:00P The Sound Garden Baltimore, MD
Nov 19 2007 9:00P The Red & The Black Washington, DC
Nov 20 2007 9:00P The Khyber Philadelphia, PA
Nov 21 2007 8:00P Asbury Lanes Asbury Park, New Jersey
Nov 22 2007 9:00P The Big Easy Portland, ME
Nov 23 2007 8:00P Great Scott Boston, MA
Nov 24 2007 9:00P The Knitting Factory New York, NY
Nov 26 2007 9:00P The Silver Dollar Toronto, ONT
Nov 27 2007 6:00P Luna Music Indianapolis, IN
Nov 28 2007 8:00P The Pageant St. Louis, Missouri
Nov 29 2007 9:00P Darkroom chicago, Illinois
Nov 30 2007 8:00P Vaudeville Mews Des Moines, Iowa
Dec 1 2007 9:00P 7th Street Entry Minneapolis, MN
Dec 2 2007 4:00P Kief’s Lawrence, KS
Dec 2 2007 8:00P Jackpot Lawrence, KS
Dec 4 2007 8:00P The Fox Boulder, Colorado
Dec 5 2007 9:00P The Black Sheep Colorado Springs, CO
Dec 6 2007 8:00P Larimer Lounge Denver, Colorado
Dec 7 2007 10:00P Burt’s Tiki Lounge Salt Lake City, UT
Dec 8 2007 6:00P The Record Exchange Boise, ID
Dec 8 2007 9:00P Neurolux Boise, ID
Dec 9 2007 9:00P Bourbon Street Spokane, WA
Dec 12 2007 9:00P Logan’s Victoria, BC
Dec 13 2007 9:00P Media Club Vancouver, BC
Dec 14 2007 9:00P Crystal Ballroom Portland, OR
Dec 15 2007 8:00P The Old Fire House Redmond, WA
Feb 8 2008 4:00P Bend WinterFest Bend, OR
Some Ray Charles for you today. One of the greatest rhythm and blues soul singers to ever step in front of a microphone.