Archive for March, 2008

Live Albums — Dead or Alive?

I was tagging songs on my Last.fm account the other day (I like to listen to an eclectic mix of music while I work) when I noticed the sheer number of live albums which were being scrobbled from my music library. In no particular order or ranking (they are all equally excellent listening):

Perhaps it was the advent of the music video, MTV, the videotape recorder/player and the eventual evolution of the DVD player along with the rest of the technological wonders of the last twenty years or so that led to the gradual demise of the great live albums. Has any recent band and/or musician released a live album that measures up to the great live albums like those listed above? Where is the impetus for bands/musicians today to record great live albums if a video or a DVD will suffice? I don’t know. There’s something about a really well recorded live album that sticks with you long after you have heard it. It’s like an artifact of an other time. As much as a video or a DVD may attempt to (and in certain ways it may surpass a live recording) it doesn’t capture this aspect of the live album experience. Perhaps this is why field recordings are still so popular.

Let me ask, if and when a Zappa “Roxy DVD” is released, will it take away any of the mystique from the original vinyl recording?

Top Secret Drum Corps

Terry Bozzio is alive and well, and currently resides in Switzerland:

I’d love to see these guys performing The Black Page! Via Roger Bourland.

King Of The Rickroll

I’m going to have to mention the name of Rick Astley now, but fear not: it’s for purely sociological reasons. You see, Mr Astley has been rickrolled:

Over the last year or so, Astley has watched with puzzled amazement as “Never Gonna Give You Up” has been mocked, celebrated, remixed and reprised, its original music video viewed millions of times on YouTube, all by a generation that could barely swallow its Gerber carrots when the song first topped the pop charts.

Here’s just one particularly puzzling example.

Not So Wuthering

If your name is Kate Bush, you may want to look away now.
Be sure to check #6 #1!

To Protect And Serve

With Zappanale #19 right around the corner this August, I figured people will need some appropriate apparel.

Say for instance, a long sleeve T-shirt (click image for details):

stop-gail-cafepress.jpg

… or how about a nice trucker hat (click image for details):

stop-gail-hat.jpg

Now, we have no idea who this Gail person is, but it just sort of sounded right in a mysterious way — and the “to protect and serve” only makes it more intriguing…

Hungry for more? Check out the store!

Woven Hand: Your Russia (2006)

The sheer power… I’ve seen them 4-5 times, one of the greatest live experience ever. This one is an audience recording, but full of energy: the band (as always) almost explodes.

If you go for better sound quality, you should check the videos on their unofficial site. Or: go and see them live!

Gauthier & Dufour

Crawling out of the gigantic cesspool that is YouTube, sometimes a shiny gem comes to the surface. Here’s one:

Via Fronk D.

Tourette’s

Stanley Zappa writes, and does so admirably well.
On moving from Portland to LA (among other things):

Long after the radio had been turned off you could still hear construction dudes singing “yo soy back on el chain gang, “aaaaaaaaaa yiiii yiiii yiiiiiiiii !” and “los boys are back in town, back in town, “aaaaaaaaaa yiiii yiiii yiiiiiiiii !” as if they all had Tourette’s syndrome and Thin Lizzy and the Pretenders were their tics.

Believe it or not, that always started my day with a smile, even if that smile only lasted 10 to 15 minutes.

Barry’s latest pick: It Is Not Mean If It Is True.

Be sure to check out Stanley’s 2003 album Visions by the way:

Abridging customary delineations of foreground/background, or concerto grosso layout, the group has found means to telescope complex interactions into brief and concentrated spans.

Wowie Zowie…

Aphex Twin – Windowlicker

Aphex Twin (aka Richard David James) was born on August 18, 1971 in Limerick, Ireland and is an English electronic music artist. He has been described as “the most inventive and influential figure in contemporary electronic music.

While not to everyone’s taste, this particular video is both a hilarious and excellent example of Aphex Twin’s subversive and sardonic view of contemporary music culture (in plain English, rap videos).

Warning/Promise: the full uncut version of this video contains explicit language (lots of four letter words and words that people with a certain skin color are never suppose to use).

You Say Carmina, I Say Carmana

Sing it with me! … and let’s Carl the whole thing Orff…