It's been a long time since my last super-awesome Popdose mixtape, so I decided to jump in again. I imagine this week's mix would win the approval of Eddie Van Halen, noted hater of lead singers (he did coin the phrase Lead Singer Disease after all). Of course my inclusion of one of VH's lesser-known tracks ("Sunday Afternoon in the Park") helps. Here's one track that didn't quite make the cut, although it is certainly as worthy as the others. It's "The Sheltering Sky," from King Crimson's Discipline. And yes, I threw Kiss into the mix. Related articles The Popdose Podcast: Episode 18 (popdose.com) The Popdose VIDEO Interview: Nick Offerman ("Parks & Recreation") (popdose.com)
The Zombies -- Breathe Out, Breathe In (Red House) Well this was surprisingly pleasant, although nowhere near the greatness of the original incarnation of the group. The opening title track is a dead ringer for latter day Steely Dan, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. But that's not really the Zombies that people are expecting to hear, is it? Still, it's clear that founding Zombies Colin Bluntstone and Rod Argent -- who receive featured billing status on Breathe Out, Breathe In -- still have plenty of songwriting gas left in the tank, as evidenced by strong songs like the prog-tinged rocker "Another Day," the delicate and melodic "Any Other Way," and the surprisingly effective and overtly religious "Christmas for the Free" -- the last of which comes damn close to recreating the vinta...
With the recent news of Phil Collins' retirement from music, I thought it would be a good time to run this two-part Genesis overview again (originally published on March 10, 2008). I think a proper assessment of Phil's whole career will reveal that he was an important figure in 20th century popular music, and all the cheesy Disney soundtracks in the world can't take away the great work he did. Since one of my favorite things in the whole world is telling people about music I love, I'm starting a series of overview articles dedicated to some of my favorite bands. Similar guides abound on the Internet, and two sites in particular that produce excellent ones are Popdose and the AV Club. The first entry in the series I've dubbed "Get to Know..." is for Genesis. Depending on your age,...
I really need to find a way to turn music listening into a paying, full-time gig. Because that's the only way I could ever hope to have time to take in all the good (and not-so-good) music that comes out every year. Life really was much simpler when I didn't even want to make time for anything that wasn't by Kiss, Rush, or Iron Maiden. So instead of approaching this as a "Best Albums of 2010" or "Best Music of 2010" list, it's more of a "My Favorite Albums/Music of 2010 That I Had Time to Listen To" list. These are the albums that moved me one way or another this year, although obviously this is not (and cannot be) an exhaustive list. I'm sure lots of really swell records got left off, but that's why there are other year-end lists on the internet, right? #10. Kanye West, My Beautiful
When he wanted to put together yet another version of King Crimson in the early 1990s, Robert Fripp reached out to Japan co-founder David Sylvian. Sylvian passed at the opportunity, but the pair went ahead released a studio album in 1993 anyway. This is the best cut from that album -- "Jean the Birdman". It's a bit goofy, but the song more than makes up for it. So given that this video was produced in '93, how do you think it fared on MTV?
Stupid real life is really putting a crimp in my ability to review this season of The Venture Bros. As a result, you may have noticed that last week's episode - "Handsome Ransom" - was skipped. I'll get around to it at some point, but suffice it to say that I enjoyed it quite a bit. And now on to newer business. I don't know about you, but Season 4 of VB is clicking in a way that Season 3 seldom did. Maybe it's the more character-driven storylines, but it doesn't feel as if Jackson and Doc are trying so hard this year. "Perchance to Dean" is a perfect example. It's got the feel of an early episode, but with the comedic and storytelling sophistication of more recent efforts. It really is a neat hybrid, just like Dean's creepy, Phantom of the Opera-esque clone brother. We ge
More prog goodness, you say? Sure! Here's my favorite KC tune ever, from their 1974 masterpiece Red. Witness the majestic and face-melting drumming of one Bill Bruford, who absolutely owns on this number. My favorite moment comes just after the 4:20 mark, when he kicks out this sinister groove that I could listen to on repeat all day. That weird-sounding cymbal he uses, in a stroke of great luck, was the result of some impromptu dumpster-diving. Forget just prog rock, kids, music doesn't get much better than this.
To no one's surprise, last year's round of Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees included not one progressive rock act. This despite the millions of albums sold, the countless musicians inspired, and the long-lasting impact of the genre's best. Hell, can anyone under 50 even name two Dave Clark Five songs? Yeah, me neither. But to be fair, I can understand why someone not very familiar with prog rock might be inclined to write it off as so much boring instrumental wankery and bastardized classical music pastiches. But to paint an endlessly rich style of music with such a broad brush is not only lazy, it's downright inaccurate. So to show that prog ain't all clinical sweep arpeggios and no heart, I've put together a mixtape to showcase the gentler side of the genre. What we've got