Wednesday, September 28, 2011

If It's Tuesday, It's Wednesday: New Releases, 9/27/11


I'm not hearing the "back to basics," "alt-country" sound that many critics have been hearing. But I don't mind.  Like all Wilco records prior, "The Whole Love" did little for me at the start, but slowly crept up on me and attacked.

There are moments, "Black Moon" comes to mind, that will take you back to "Being There." But this new one is not that record, or any other Wilco record, and this is why I love this band. "The Whole Love" is another step forward for Jeff Tweedy and company. Not a giant step, but a respectable step.

It's not back to basics. It's actually a bit demanding. It takes the subtleties of "YHF," the textures of "Sky Blue Sky," and even a few of the pop sensibilities of "The Album," and delivers a worthy entry to the Wilco catalogue.

I'm counting on this to get better with each visit.

One disappointing note-- the iTunes and vinyl only bonus track is one of the better tracks. 



I've been considering a John Oates "Weekend Mix" for some time, but quite frankly, I'm afraid. It'd be a breeze to compile a baker's dozen of H&O tunes, written and sung by John Oates, that should impress the lot of you. And while I have the utmost faith in my readers, I anticipate a phalanx of snidery, not to mention those who will just ante up a big "Not gonna do it" without hearing a note.  (Ah, maybe I'll do it anyway.)

That said, I do prefer Daryl over John. Daryl Hall's solo output has been too infrequent. The Robert Fripp produced "Sacred Songs" is a masterpiece. (Yes, a masterpiece.) "Three Hearts In The Happy Ending Machine" is full of power pop and soul brilliance. "Soul Alone" suffered from over-production, but still had many moments. And his last effort, the elusive "Can't Stop Dreaming" offered, in spades, the white boy soul that has made Daryl a star.

"Laughing Down Crying" builds on all of this, as well as the inspiration of the many guests he has hosted on his genius internet show, "Live From Daryl's House." Really good stuff.



I want to love this record, but I don't. I love Matthew Sweet, but "Modern Art" needs more than just "that sound." Harmonies, backwards guitar, 12-string's all here. It's just not enough for me.

It's been a while since something solid has come from one of the better singer/songwriter/power pop stars of our time.  1999's "In Reverse" and 2003's "Kimi Ga Suki Raifu" both had a handful of jangly winners, and I do like the two covers collections with Susanna Hoffs. But as uneven as The Thorns record was, that side project with Shawn Mullins and Pete Droge had the last bit of truly memorable music from Mr. Sweet.

(Speaking of Susanna Hoffs, there is also a Matthew Sweet-produced record from The Bangles that hit yesterday.  Haven't heard enough to comment, but their Nazz cover, which I did hear, is just so-so. Still, I love them for doing it.)




"Immersion Boxes," in which you get not only the music, but extra stuff like pashminas sporting the "Dark Side Of The Moon" logo, Richard Wright's recipe for pudding, blu-ray DVDs with 5.1. and maybe even 5.2 and 5.3 mixes of everything, metallic balls of something, lots of foam, and more.

I bought, fool that I am, the new 2011 remasters of "Piper At The Gates Of Dawn" and "A Saucerful Of Secrets," and I will admit on these pages, I WILL buy the "Experience" editions of "Wish You Were Here" and "The Wall," because I love this band, and you know...these new editions just might sound better.

I had the opportunity to listen to the "DSOM" remaster, as well as the unreleased early "Alan Parsons' mix, and I gotta tell ya, it sounded damn good. Still, it's fun to make fun.



I want to keep this short because it may be a touchy subject.

I love this record. It was a game-changer for a reason. But, a) I don't understand why Kurt Cobain is considered a genius, and b) I still don't hear how "Teen Spirit" and "More Than A Feeling" are the same song.


There's a big, 4 disc set with a rare mix and b-sides and other stuff. Maybe you can tell me why I should consider Kurt Cobain a genius, and how I can hear Boston in "Teen Spirit."



Hey Gordo. Take your $119 boxed set with it's 9 minutes of unreleased audio and 40 minutes of live footage featuring such rarely played chestnuts as "Roxanne" and "Message In A Bottle" and shove it up that stick-filled ass of yours. You and your label have bigger balls than Truck Robinson.



soundsource said...

so just so i'm clear on this you don't think much of the Sting box set?

buzzbabyjesus said...

About a month after Kurt left the building I was in Seattle on business, and was taken to the Crocodile where I guess it all started.
I saw this scrawled on the wall in the bathroom:

"It sure hurt about Kurt
It'd been better if it had been Vedder"

Jeff Matthews said...

Starting with Being There, I have looked forward with goofy anticipation to each Wilco release. The most consistently interesting sonic experimentation grounded within the context of traditionally solid songwriting. What other bands have been able to match this consistency? I'm hard pressed to come up with others.

FD13NYC said...

I liked Teen Spirit, Nevermind was a good breakthrough album. Cobain was not a genius, just a f**cked up tortured musician. Tom Scholtz, a little genius maybe technically sound wise. But I'll say it again, no comparison to More Than A Feeling, which is a way better melodic song, vocally and musically. To me anyway.

Then again, both Brad Delp and Cobain committed suicide, so I don't know.

Noam Sane said...

Define "genius". I really don't know what it means. But "About A Girl" is the best Lennon/McCartney song since...ummm...Lennon/McCartney.

So...Red Hot Chili Peppers, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Who's next, Danzig?

Sal Nunziato said...

Well, I didn't call Kurt a genius, but that term has been bandied about by others when referring to him.

One not bad debut, one legitimate classic, one decent follow-up. That's what I hear.

David Handelman said...

RE: Wilco album, do you think Jeff listened to a lot of Monkees and Rutles? I think the opening of "Dawned on Me" is lifted from the Rutles "I Must Be In Love". Not that there's anything wrong with that.

David Handelman said...

Here's an interview with my friend Michael Azerrad the Nirvana biographer about the album anniversary.

Big Jim Slade said...

PF Immersion sets - geez, which one is it again that includes the surround sound, gel-filled womb for the listener to climb into? Is that the one to get, or the one with the full body length vibrating vagina you slip into which brings to you a full body-gasm via the vibrations of Pink Floyd songs?

I would be interested in the 5.x stuff, but then I would have to get a surround system. Hell, I may not have a bong anymore, but I still have headphones.

As far as Wilco goes, I love Sky Blue Sky and thought that The Album was good, but not like SBS. But I would put it on from time to time to get to know it better. I put it on again yesterday after hearing the new album and realized that I love that album! There are so many great moments. I look forward to getting to know the new one.

Sal Nunziato said...

That's it! The Rutles. My friend and I kept calling this the "new Harrison" tune, after the last album's "My Sweet Lord" nod. But also, check out the change at the bridge of "Dawned On Me." It's "I Got You" from "Being There."

Leon said...

A Daryl Hall mix? Or a John Oates mix? Or a Hall & Oates mix?


Dave said...

It's the Daryl Hall release that I'm excited about. I'm buying it sight unheard.

Anonymous said...

It's the riff in Teen Spirit and feeling. That's all. Not the same song. but the exact same guitar power chord riff. You can't play the one on an acoustic without it sounding like the other. I dare ya.

Max Frost said...

Your Sting review is one of the greatest things I've ever read.

Anonymous said...

saw sting at the greek a few years back.....he did "roxanne" for about 25 was pure torture...him singing "roxanne-o" and then making the crowd "echo" him.....over and over and over...
if i ever met him, i'd ask why would he do such a thing.....

KevinR said...

Thanks for the review of the Daryl Hall album. I was never a big Philly soul fan-too smooth, with all those alto falsettos and slick arrangements, so I never really cared for the H&O I heard on the radio, except for "How Does It Feel To Back In Your Arms Again," but just like I was never a J. Geils fan, but loved Midnight Souvenirs after your review, Daryl's new one is growing on me as I've been streaming it for 3 days now.
I streamed Nick Lowe's new one for
about 4 times before I bought it, also. I don't mind the lack of snark, I just thought the guy who was one quarter of Rockpile should rock a little bit more. But familiarity bred content, and I think the same is happening with Daryl's, and I'm a beer or so away from buying it. Thanks again, and another reason why Street Date always ranks high among my favorite posts.

Anything Should Happen said...

If ever I met Sting, I'd ask him why a geordie sings in that ridiculous reggae voice and then punch him.

Life sentence for crimes to music m'lud.

FD13NYC said...

Hey Anon, they're not the same power chord riff, believe me. First off, they are both chords to the chorus. Teen Spirit opens with it. Boston's is different. Check it out, play it, you'll see.

buzzbabyjesus said...

Economic collapse, earthquake, tsunami, drought, Tea Party, SuperHeavy, Sting box. The end is near. All we need now is a new Police album.

WHT said...

Yes on the Oates. It's like getting the occasional Colin Moulding nugget, or Dave Davies, or Keith Richards, as a change of pace.