Active Music Listening Wednesday December 10, 2014

YTD recordings listened to: 975
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 602
Not good music: 306

Honorable Mentions: 15
Buys: 17

Possibles:  Boyd Rivers, Chris McGregor, Alvin Youngblood Hart, Dave Arner Trio, Bill Horist, MAKU Soundsystem, Zomby, Retox, About Group, Jessie Mae Hemphill, Kendl Winter, Bone Dance, Defeater, Jonwayne, Okkyung Lee, The Ballantynes, Debruit, Slidhr, The Whammies, The Chewers, La Misa Negra, Alexander Hawkins, Cheryl Pyle,  Toxic Holocaust, Equal Stones, Comeback Kid, Susie Iberra/Roberto Rodriguez, Bio Ritmo, Lenguas Largas, Khun Narin, Doug Seegers, The Coral, Simo Lagnawi, Hush Point, Coffinworm, Raspberry Bulbs, Akele Wube, Spacesuits

@@@ Small Town Heroes: Hurray for the Riff Raff (ATO, 2014).  I found this record on Stolling Rone’s best of 2014.  It’s a female fronted slack bluegrass record.  At least the first tune is slack.  Instrumentation is banjo, guitar and with drums and electric organ coming in the second tune.  I like the singer’s world weary vibe and while the blurb compared her to Pete Seeger, to my ears it sounds more like late ’60s/early ’70s Rolling Stones honky tonk records.  Solid B.

@@@ Benjamin Booker: Self-titled (ATO, 2014).  Also from the Stolling Rone’s best of 2014.  Booker has a pebbly, growling voice and he puts a heaping tablespoon of punk bash into his music.  He’s associated with Jack White, but the difference in the voices makes a big difference to the listener.  White’s drama queen epic rock flow has grown tiresome, and Booker is much more meat and potatoes. I dig the drummer and guitar player.  Another solid B.

@@@ Parquet Courts: Sunbathing Animal (What’s Your Rupture, 2014).  Think Pavement with a stomp box with a bit of Minor Threat in the singer.  Slackly aggressive.  The tempos are a bit varied and traverse from slower clean guitar indie to noisy Velvet Underground with a splash of espresso.  I’m not really connecting with the singer.   Also from the fabulous folks at Stolling Rone.

@@@ Eric Church: The Outsiders (EMI Nashville, 2014).  Wrapping up with some out of the box country music off the Stolling Rone list.  I do respect that the country folks draw from various influences, it’s just that the music is usually pretty awful.  Think a Bon Jovi haircut wearing a cowboy hat with some Jack White guitar riffage driving in a pickup truck through a storm of cheese sticks.  The blurb said something about stoner funk, but somebody was up in a big bag of weed when they typed that.  Oh no, the funk has appeared on the third tune, the Cold One, and boy is it whack.  I can’t stomach this.


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