Thursday, September 30, 2010
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
Besides Neil Young being an important part of the Reprise story, this album in particular is significant in my own transition to buying my own records. Neil Young was always a kind of ghostly mystery to me and this record sitting in my parent’s collection always seemed kind of sacred... I listened to it back to back with bad HipHop records I'd buy from Second Hand Tunes.
Saturday, September 25, 2010
Friday, September 24, 2010
Thursday, September 23, 2010
Wednesday, September 22, 2010
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
The Kapp logo however is super-awesome.
Monday, September 20, 2010
Note the name written on tape has my mother’s maiden initial. In 1963 Cindy Wilson was 12 years old and buying records regularly.
I really like the arrows against the orange.
Mayor Daley is my favorite band in Chicago. They also have my favorite band name in recent memory. And better still, they have really good looking album art and t-shirts n stuff.
In the interest of full disclosure I should tell you they're friends of mine. And what with the band's namesake a little nepotism seems appropriate, right?
Given recent political sea change they may want to look into a name change though. Mayor Emanuel?
Sunday, September 19, 2010
Another Chicago northern soul jam. The label is a little misleading as the song is more bouyant and sweet than hot and sexually explosive. Although I imagine a rec hall full of middle-aged Mancunians spinning around could get pretty torrid. In any case, dang does that label look sharp.
Give it a listen here
Saturday, September 18, 2010
Friday, September 17, 2010
From a comprehensive M&M label discography, this nugget: "A Chicago Defender blurb for a photo said that the Enforcers 'rocked with funky soul.' The group performed what was popularly called 'soul jazz,' a fusion music that had great popular appeal at the time." source
Thursday, September 16, 2010
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
Last Kind Words was put out by the record store-turned-label Mississippi Records (out of Portland, OR) and compiles assorted blues recordings from 1926-1953. Kind of a survey, it fills in the gaps between the better known baby boomer-lauded blues, but more so, is just chock full of beautiful music. It's the record that introduced me to Blind Willie McTell's duets with his wife Kate, and the monster of a title track that is like nothing else and my trump card for anyone griping about blues formula.
The label's whole aesthetic is rock solid, with this record as testament-- album cover by Chris Johansen and this handsome label.
Monday, September 13, 2010
The first album from Chicago's now defunct Coughs. Cannot tell you how inspired i was the first time i heard this album. Sorta non-musicians being super musicians with lots of simple parts arranged in smart ways. Load Records, who put the album out on CD, describes them as "energy driven noisy punk," which isn't inaccurate in the sense that like Coltrane is "passionate," or pizza is "cheese on bread"
Sunday, September 12, 2010
Friday, September 10, 2010
In addition to awesome Chicago soul, I also enjoy awesome honky bullshit, like this record, Lindsey Buckingham's second solo outing from 1984. What a label, what a face. The song DW Suite is pretty much the high water mark of Buckingham's knob-twiddlery.
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
Monday, September 6, 2010
Denise LaSalle's first single for Chicago label Tarpon. Love Reputation remains a big Northern Soul jam, but the b-side, One Little Thing, is my fave. Denise LaSalle would go on to score major hits with the Willie Mitchell make everyone sound like Al Green style, but i much prefer her earlier cuts. Also, I'm a real sucker for any label with an animal on it. The Tarpon fish is cool, but really cute mammals are the easier sell, as with Bearsville and RSO.
I wrote in more depth about this 45 on an old blog of mine here, replete with downloadable audio.
Sunday, September 5, 2010
Richard Youngs memorializes the passing of his friend's dog via this album title and those sad, sad little paw prints (the musical content is unrelated, but no less melancholic and beautiful). I believe this originally came out on CD only in the 90s.
This album is so, so good. Oh dear, I'm tearing up!
And with that, I end my run here- looking forward to checking in on the next guest bloggers, for sure.
Saturday, September 4, 2010
This is the Strapping Fieldhands' 10" ep "In the Pineys." A real fine little slab from the first golden era of Siltbreeze, the label who put out The Greatest 7" Of All Time (that would be the Shadow Ring's "Tiny Creatures"), and who came back a few years ago and started putting out all kindsa great stuff again.
Strapping Fieldhands apparently said they wanted to steal Skiffle from the British, and I don't know much about that, but I know that their version of Lay Down (Candles in the Rain) is one of the most crazyawesomegood covers ever. Of a Melanie song! How'd they do that?
Friday, September 3, 2010
Ooh, dirty Texas swamp punk. From Austin, but still. A ghostly silver luchador for Wrestler Records- ¡fantástico!
my biggest mistake
my biggest mistake
was when I left you
my biggest mistake
was when I left you in a shallow grave
Thursday, September 2, 2010
Another sea shanty record- make that the sea shanty record. Sung with the edge and gusto of real whiskey-soaked sea dogs- which Lloyd, at least, was, working on an Antarctic whaling ship in the 1930’s. Both Lloyd and MacColl acquired their folk song habits in the midst of the Great Depression, and their dissemination of songs of the working people, whether originating from ships or factories, is closely linked to their political beliefs. Both were actively involved with the communist party on a long-term basis.
These days MacColl’s legacy may be most present in the many, many covers of “Dirty Old Town,” which he wrote about his northern England hometown of Salford. The Pogues do kinda own that song with their amazing version so all who assume it's about Dublin are to be forgiven. I've been to Dublin. It is, indeed, dirty. Of course the Pogues were from London. Anyway.
These sea shanties are exciting and bawdy and generally awesome, especially Old Billy Riley which is so fierce and dark in this version that I can imagine Nick Cave singing it. Makes want to take to the sea- or, at least, drink whiskey! The center label seems so simple and well-crafted. The Tradition font is like just about to cross over to the Celtic dark side but instead keeps it together in the beautifully balanced gold/ ruby/ off-white composition. Solid.
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
“Friends and Neighbors- Ornette Live at Prince Street” was recorded after Coleman had taken up trumpet and violin in addition to sax (I looooove his violin playing the most, damn) and features Charlie Haden, Dewey Redman and Ed Blackwell. This recording really embodies just a total joy of expression and community vibes, with the titular friends and neighbors providing vocals on the vibrant and soulful first track.
The label design here is so great (the cover is too- how stylin' is Denardo Coleman?). It showcases a rare instance of pastels used for the forces of good, and the concentric circles highlight the tactile depth the label has. Flying Dutchman also put out some records by vocalist Leon Thomas- the dude who yodels on Pharoah Sanders records- that I would really love to pick up.
In general, part of my “collector not completist” attitude is that the music matters more than rarity or whatever (as long as it's on vinyl- is that contradictory?), and it doesn’t bother me that a bunch of my records are re-issues. In this case, I’m definitely glad this lovely original found its way to me, and I think the center label printing is one of the areas that really makes this pressing stand out.