With all the crap I've been dealing with thanks to Hurricane Sandy, I've had precious little time for music listening. And that means I haven't been able to really dig into the new record from the New Mastersounds, Out on the Faultline. I mean to correct that today, and the first step is sharing the official video for the first song off the LP, "You Mess Me Up." It's a fun video for an even funner song. That's right, funner. The group's last album, Breaks from the Border, made my 2011 year-end best of list, and I have a feeling this one will too. Out on the Faultline is available now! And if you're on Spotify, you can check out this track and most of the ones featured in my Listening Booth series by subscribing to this playlist.
One of the downsides to so much good music coming out this year is that I don't get nearly enough time to enjoy or write about everything I want. And so I've been remiss in mentioning one of the many great new albums from this year -- On the Way by Negroni's Trio. I very recently discovered the trio -- Puerto Rican-born pianist José Negroni and his son Nomar on drums, as well as a rotating bassist -- through the magic of the internet and they are my favorite current jazz act. In many ways they've supplanted The Bad Plus as my go-to group for adventurous, muscular jazz. If you really want to get technical, you can consider their music Latin jazz, but that's just a label. What it is is stirring, melodic, daring music that any music fan can appreciate. On the Way -- the group's seventh
While most of my Football Friday posts focus on the National Football League, I don't want to forget the college game. After all, that's where American football got its start -- and where it was most popular up until about the mid 20th century. So for something a little different, I've pulled together a gallery of vintage college football sheet music covers, most of which feature timeless school fight songs. Why sheet music, you ask? Honestly, I have no idea. But you know I love old ephemera, so that's all the reason I need really. "The Victors" is the fight song of the University of Michigan. "On Iowa" is one of three fight songs currently used by the University of Iowa Hawkeye Marching Band, along with "Iowa Fight Song" and "Roll Along Iowa." ...
It's been waaaay too long since we got new music from No Doubt, but I guess Gwen Stefani was busy raising kids and releasing stupid clothes. But finally, after more than a decade without new music, the band is back and set to release Push and Shove in September. Here's the first single from the record, "Settle Down." Sounds like classic No Doubt to me, although not as traditionally rock as from around the Tragic Kingdom era. But it's poppy, fun, and catchy, and that's all we can ask for at this point. Welcome back!
Today is Sir Paul McCartney's 70th birthday, so in tribute I want to share one of my favorite tunes from Macca's post-Beatles career. It's a live version of "Magneto and Titanium Man," from a 1976 concert at the Kingdome in Seattle. The original cut can be heard on the excellent Venus and Mars album from Wings. This take made it onto a 1980 McCartney home video release, Rockshow, which hasn't seen a proper DVD issue as far as I know. Related articles Madame Tussauds Unveils Beatles Waxworks In Honor Of McCartney's 70th (wcbsfm.cbslocal.com) Weller records McCartney tribute (bbc.co.uk) Happy Birthday Macca! 70 classic pictures to mark Sir Paul McCartney's 70th birthday (mirror.co.uk)
If you're a fan of either Porcupine Tree or Opeth, you've known for years of the great musical kinship between Steven Wilson and Mikael Åkerfeldt. They've guested, produced, or mixed on each other's band's albums, but only now do we get the first true collaboration between them -- the self-titled debut of the Storm Corrosion project. I've listened to the album several times already and it's utterly engrossing. It sounds little like Porcupine Tree or Opeth, which is a good thing. The only time you really get a sense of the other bands is in Åkerfeldt's guitar playing, which is reminiscent of Opeth's more mellow moments. Anyway, one of my favorite songs on Storm Corrosion is the first one -- and lead single --"Drag Ropes." I don't know how to describe it other than the lost soundtrack
Let's just get down to it, people. "Headlong Flight" is the first official track released from the upcoming Rush album Clockwork Angels. And yea, verily, it rocketh quite hard. Behold! "Headlong Flight" via Rolling Stone. Love the fact that Rush brought back Nick Raskulinecz to co-produce, as he did a bang up job on Snakes & Arrows. Geddy, Neil, and Alex all sound as energetic as they have in at least 20 years. Looks like I need to set aside some money to see this tour.
OK I'll admit it -- I'm one of the many dumb Americans whose knowledge of Simple Minds starts and stops with "Don't You (Forget About Me)" and "Alive and Kicking." But I'm been forced to dig deeper thanks to Slacker, which introduced me to this excellent song. It's "This Fear of Gods," from the band's excellent third album, Empires and Dance. This is some seriously thick, dark stuff. It has the same propulsive, eerie feel of early Talking Heads and seems to predict the indie dance-pop revival of the last decade. Don't be turned off by the 7-minute running time. This thing goes by in a flash. As a matter of fact, just get the whole damn album. But for now, enjoy "This Fear of Gods."
The thing about the Darkness is, it was hard to separate the sincerity of their music from the almost painfully ironic image they cultivated. Even so, Permission to Land was an excellent rock record. The follow-up LP, not so much. After that, the Darkness went dark for several years. They're back now, and their as-yet-untitled third album should drop some time this year. The first taste is "Nothing's Gonna Stop Us," a rousing, electric slab of hard rock. Justin Hawkins still has a great set of pipes, which is the key to the whole thing. But the tune itself is pretty damn catchy and fun, which is really all this band is about. Check out the video, and then download the song for free from the band's website.