In a special summer episode, Bill and Brian call each other up to discuss the Brian Wilson biopic Love & Mercy.
While Bill is vacationing with his wife and celebrating their wedding anniversary, Brian has decided to gaze shoe-ward with longtime friend Dan Drago of the 25 O'Clock Podcast, and producer, engineer, studio owner Alex Santilli of Spice House Sound.
Musician, producer, author, podcaster (what doesn't this guy excel at?) Jesse Cannon lends his experience and knowledge to Bill and Brian to help us discuss Refused's (apparent at the time) swan song The Shape of Punk to Come (1998, Burning Heart/Epitaph).
Bill is joined by musician and podcaster Jim Laczkowski (nowplayingjim.com) to discuss Neko Case's Blacklisted (2002, Bloodshot/ANTI-).
Musician, blogger, and label head Jeff Fiedler joins Bill and Brian to discuss Robert Palmer's Clues (1980, Island).
Bill and Brian are joined by musician Chris Fox (rubybonesband.com) to talk about the Walkmen's Heaven (2012, Fat Possum Records)!
Our Common Thread column returns with this look at rare performance outings from famous producers, including discs from Phil Spector, Brian Holland, Lamont Dozier, Jimmy Bowen, Jeff Barry and Ellie Greenwich, Richie Allen (aka Richard Podolor), and a famous group you probably didn’t realize were even more successful behind the scenes than they were as singers!
We conclude our look at the full Van Morrison catalog with this installation reviewing all his discs from 2003’s What’s Wrong with This Picture through his latest, 2018’s You’re Driving Me Crazy and also select his best live albums and hits packages!
Maybe Folsom’s administrators were understandably in thrall to Cash’s celebrity. Or that they felt an obligation extend an invitation, after he had raised the penitentiary’s profile via the 1955 Sun Records smash “Folsom Prison Blues.” But do prisons even need to be marketed?
Our examination of the full Van Morrison catalog continues with this look at all his studio albums from 1990’s Enlightenment through 2002’s Down the Road!
We continue our exploration through the full and vast Van Morrison catalog (an arduous task, to be sure!) by examining each of his studio albums from 1978’s Wavelength through 1989’s Avalon Sunset!
When the Dead emerged, there had never been anything remotely like them before. They invented an entirely new paradigm and in doing so, created the closes thing pop music has to a real religion. And the benefit of the Grateful Dead’s religion is that there’s no shortage of primary text documents to refer back to.
Join us as our own Jeff Fiedler takes on the challenge of tackling the full catalog of one of rock-and-roll’s most prolific legends of all, Van Morrison, beginning with this first installation covering all of the soulful Irish singer-songwriter’s albums from 1967’s Blowin’ Your Mind through 1977’s A Period of Transition!
We wrap up our look at all the ELO studio albums by examining all their discs (their soundtrack to Xanadu included) from 1979’s Discovery through 2015’s Alone in the Universe and selecting their best hits compilations!
Apollo, of course, is widely considered one of the best—if not the best—live album ever made, one whose content has been covered extensively in other venues. Specifically: how this is seductive, gutbucket soul music delivered by an impressively ragged-voiced pop auteur who at times seems almost lost in a gospel reverie.
Join us as we make our way, album by album, through the full catalog of this Jeff Lynne-led classic-rock band, beginning with this look at their first seven albums from their 1972 debut disc No Answer through 1978’s Out of the Blue!
We conclude our four-part look at the full Chicago/Peter Cetera studio catalog with this look at all their albums from 1995 to date, including 2008’s cult classic Stone of Sisyphus, originally recorded back in ‘93 and famously rejected and shelved by Warner Brothers. We also pick the band’s best hits packages and live albums!
Our Albums from the Lost and Found column returns with a look at this Asylum Records release from 1980, one of only two solo albums ever released by legendary session guitarist Danny “Kootch” Kortchmar, best known for his work as a regular sideman to James Taylor and Carole King in the ‘70s and as Don Henley’s indispensable co-writer/co-producer during the ‘80s. So what does Kortchmar sound like on his own? Read within to find out!
We resume our look at the full Chicago studio catalog by delving into their discs from Chicago 18 through Night and Day: Big Band and tackling Peter Cetera’s solo discs from Solitude/Solitaire through World Falling Down while we’re at it!
Live at Leeds is the fucking Platonic ideal of rock ‘n roll, preserving in amber a show that simultaneously highlights the group’s exacting pop acumen even as its individual players all seem like they could fly off the rails at any moment.
One of the hardest things to perfectly nail as a music fan is to catch a band live at their apex. Seeing bands before they break or as legacy acts can be fun. But the best is seeing an artist at the absolute height of their relevance. I never got it together to see Wilco in the mid-aughts, but there’s at least Kicking Television.
We continue our visit through the full Chicago studio catalog by delving through each of their albums from 1976’s Chicago X through 1984’s Chicago 17 and also take a listen to Peter Cetera’s very obscure first solo album in the process!
Join us as our own Jeff Fiedler takes on one of his biggest challenges yet and bravely makes his way through the vast, Roman-numeral-laden, and double-album-heavy body of work that is the full Chicago studio catalog! Sure, they’re a fabulous singles act, but how do their albums stack up? Find out here!
Reggae was a truly modern form of music—minimalist even, with enough empty space left hanging in the air inside each song that the music felt almost elemental. There’s room for nature in reggae, but also for community and assembly. Which is what makes it good party music, but extremely good protest music.