Thursday, March 31, 2011

Day 214

Godfathers- More Songs About Love & Hate

I love it when I pull out an unexpected gem from the .99 cent crates at Waterloo Records. I only got this record because I always liked the Godfathers tune, "Birth, School,Work, Death". (Which is not on this album).

But, because of that one song, I thought it would be worth the buck to take a flyer out on this record. And, man did that ever pay off! This album rules.

I'm trying to think who would be a good comparison for those of you who aren't familiar with them. Maybe a heavier Jesus & Mary Chain? I dunno, I'm bad at comparisons. It's just damn good late 80's British rock n' roll that I'm discovering 20+ years later. Better late than never, right?

Man, why didn't these guys rule the world? Every song on this record kicks ass and I plan on listening to it a lot. Really dig the tune "Walking Talking Johnny Cash Blues".

Well hell, now I have to go find the rest of their catalog on vinyl. This stuff is so good, I may be wiling to buy it on CD if that's all I can find. Ok, maybe that's a stretch.

Thank you .99 cent impulse buy at Waterloo Records!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Day 213

Go-Go's - Beauty and the Beat

Alright, now here's a record I can get behind! I always dug the Go-Go's but never had any of their stuff, so thanks to Lori for giving me this record.

Of course, "We Got The Beat" and "Our Lips Are Sealed" are the big hits off this record, but this album is so much fun, I think any of the songs could have been singles. And finally, I'm listening to a record that Jessica actually enjoys!

Anyone else as excited as I am that tomorrow is Opening Day? I got the chance to go out to Round Rock to see the Rangers scrimmage the Express. It was pretty awesome to see the big league boys come to town to take on our local minor leaguers. I really should have asked off for this Friday so I could stay home and watch the Rangers take down the Red Sox. Guess I could always call in sick!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Day 212

Giuffria- Giuffria

Quite possibly the worst album in my collection. Something had to be right? I got it in one of the Half Price boxes and kept it because I did own it on cassette back in 1985. Hey, I was 12.

Even when I was 12, I wondered why the band was named "Giuffria". Such a terrible name for a band. I know that it's the keyboardist's last name, but who the hell is he? What makes him so special? At least Gene Simmons had the good sense to change the name of the band to House Of Lords when they signed to his label.

There were a couple of interesting players in this band though. Craig Goldy on guitar later on went to play in Dio's band and bass player Chuck Wright who has been in Quiet Riot longer than Rudy Sarzo ever was even though Sarzo gets all the notoriety.

The good thing about this album is there is no reason to keep it. It skipped like crazy on Side 1 so no hard decision on whether I should keep it or not.

Here 's a video of "Call To The Heart". Man, Gregg Giuffria has to working a rug in this vidow. No way can that be his real hair.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Day 211

Stan Getz- Focus

Another album that I've had a long time, but never listened to. Perfect example of why I wanted to listen to all of my records in alphabetical order.

I was pretty stoked to see this coming up next. I've always liked Stan Getz, but had never owned any of his stuff. This album lived up to my expectations.

Keep in mind though that this is Stan Getz with a string orchestra throughout the album. I think it works well.

So what do you think of the new layout? I really dig it a lot. Jessica put it together. She did the last one too, but I think this one looks a million times better. Kudos, Jessica!

Alright that's all I got tonight. Now I have to go back and decipher my fantasy baseball team I just drafted today.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Day 210

Georgia Satellites- Georgia Satellites

Sorry, dudes. I'm feeling super lazy and don't feel like writing much. I will say that this is an underrated album. I loved that back in the 80's, "Keep Your Hands To Yourself" was in heavy rotation on MTV. That's not even close to being the best song on the album. That honor goes to "Battleship Chains". They also do a good cover of "Every Picture Tells The Story".

Ok, that's it for me. Go find it in your local used bins!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Day 209

Genesis- Genesis

Whew, last Genesis! I was actually surprised how many songs I could easily sing along to on this album. From "That's All", which was the first Genesis video I'm remember seeing when I was in the 4th grade to "Home By The Sea". Hell, I even knew the lyrics to that seriously crappy song, "Illegal Alien".

Since I know I never owned any Genesis records back in the day, I think all of this comes from my first boss back in the old Sound Warehouse days, Brian Eggert. That dude was the biggest Genesis fan I've ever met. We would all give him a ton of shit, but he didn't care. He was a proud and true fan. Gotta give him credit for that. Brian was one helluva dude. I learned a lot from him and use a lot of his managerial style when I eventually became a store manager myself. Props to you, Brian. Hope you are well!

Alright, now back to the Sweet 16!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Day 208

Genesis- Abacab

This is my favorite Genesis record. Lots of really good tunes on it and right before they got super poppy.

I especially like the new waviness of "Who Dunnit?" Just a song you'd never expect Genesis to do. I definitely think that the song "Abacab" is the best Phil Collins fronted Genesis song of all time. What, did you think I'd say "Invisible Touch"?

And I forgot how good of a tune "Man On The Corner" is. Interesting that Phil Collins is the only credited songwriter on that song. I think that's the first time in the band. The tune could have easily
been on one of his solo albums.

Ok, one more Genesis record to go. Good thing too. I'm really ready to move on from them even though I like this record. I'm taking tomorrow off from work so I think I'll get it out of the way early while I play Hockey video games and be super lazy. Ahh, love "Bobby Day"!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Day 207

Genesis- Duke

Whoops! I just realized that I had skipped Day 205 and went straight to Day 206 when I came back from my hiatus. Problem now corrected. Whew!

Eh. You take off "Misunderstanding" and "Turn It On Again" and this album really blows. Waaaay too much Tony Banks and his synthesizers on this record. Guess it's not surprising for a 1980 release.

Some songs I couldn't tell were instrumentals or just super long intros. You know I love instrumentals, but not these. I could have totally done without hearing the last two tracks "Duke's Travels" and "Duke's End". Snoozefest.

At least I was playing hockey on the Playstation while I was listening to this record. That made it somewhat bearable. I have a feeling I'll have to be doing that the next two nights too, since I have two more Genesis records to go.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Day 206

Genesis- ...And Then There Were Three...

Although there is now just the three of them on the record that dominated the charts in the 80's, this is still a '78 record and sounds like it. Maybe a little lighter, but still a "proggy" record.

The only song I originally recognized when I bought this was "Follow You, Follow Me" but I gotta say I was a little disappointed while listening to it tonight. I've become so accustomed to hearing Mark Kozelek's beautiful version, that the original just felt flat to me. Oh well.

Still a pretty good album overall. Maybe a little long in the tooth, but the songs are all solid.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Day 205

Genesis- Wind & Wuthering

I'm back! SXSW was fun, but I'm really starting to get too old for it. Way too much non-sanctioned SXSW events going on that bring in large crowds of idiots that actually makes it less fun. I'm sick of all these companies throwing parties and trying to "out-free" each other. Whatever happened to it being about the music?

That being said, I did see a lot of good bands at normal, official SXSW showcases. Can't say enough about acts like Roge, Monahans, The RG Morrison, and Gram Rabbit to name a few. I also did some great interviews with Laura Jansen and Candy Golde. They were also both great live.

I'm tempted to hire somebody to cover SXSW for next year for The Vinyl District and I'll split town. It's incredible that I would even say that since I've loved SXSW for twenty years, but that's how out of hand it's become. Ok enough about that. I'm glad to finally be back on my own blog.

It's kind of odd that I only have Phil Collins fronted Genesis. I didn't do that intentionally, just worked out that way. Shame on me, and I'll be getting some Peter Gabriel era soon.

This is a really cool album and is one of Tony Banks' and Steve Hackett's favorites. It's also Hackett's last with Genesis. There are no "hits" on this record like Genesis became known for in the 80's. It's just a really solid prog-rock record throughout.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Day 204

Gear Daddies- Billy's Live Bait

I can't remember how I got into the Gear Daddies, but I'm pretty sure it was mainly because they were a Minnesota band and after I became a huge 'Mats fan, I was consuming every band I could find from the Twin Cities scene. I want to say that I remember reading an article that described the Gear Daddies as the "best bar band in America", so I had to get it. Unfortunately, they broke up before I had a chance to see them. But I hear they play ever summer around the Upper Midwest. I gotta road trip up there to check that out.

This was the first album of theirs I got on cassette, and I played it repeatedly. I loved it so much I also got their first album, Let's Go Scare Al, as soon as I could. Too bad I haven't found that one on vinyl yet. I look every time I'm out hunting.

I would easily give this album 5 stars if I ranking albums on a scale of 1 to 5. It may have been the first "y'allternative" album I ever got. You just can't beat Martin Zellar's vocals. The guy just pours out his voice with so much emotion, it can give you goose bumps. Especially on a song like "Don't Look Me". There is not a bad song on this album. If this album came out in the 70's or even early 80's, they could have been huge.

Another note, this album has the ghost track they are most famous for, "Zamboni". Y'know, the song every hockey rink plays when the Zamboni driver comes out to resurface the ice during hockey games. Zellar must have made a small fortune off of that song.

One more thing, this blog is going to go on hiatus the rest of this week. SXSW is starting up and I won't have any time to sit at home, listen to a record, and then blog about it. But be sure to keep your eyes on I'll be posting tons of stuff on there and live tweeting SXSW on Twitter. See you in a week!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Day 203

Marvin Gaye- Midnight Love

This album came out 11 years after What's Going On and you can definitely tell it's an 80's album. Once again, too many damn synthesizers.

I had to buy it though for "Sexual Healing". Who wouldn't? And it was only a buck, so even thought the rest of the album isn't that good, it's still worth it for that one song. Plus, there is a whole lot of material on this album that you can do the robot dance as Jessica witnessed. Hey, sometimes I get bored doing this blog!

One interesting thing I noticed on the liner notes was that Marvin played the drums on just about every track. I never knew he was a drummer. Also found it strange that the album was recorded in Belgium. That's not something you see very often. Ugh, the last song just started and after 20 seconds I'm starting to think I'm gonna have to lift the needle.

It really is a shame that Marvin Gaye had to leave us in 1984. You just know that he would have been one of these artists who would have put out a bunch of crappy albums in the 80's, fell off the map in the 90's and then come back and kick all of our asses in the 2000's. RIP.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Day 202

Marvin Gaye- What's Going On

I lucked out with this record playing cleanly. The sleeve is completely tattered and it's another record I pulled from a Half Price box so I assumed that the record would be all scratched up too. So, good score on my part!

Old school R&B is one genre that I don't have enough of. They are actually hard to come by on the cheap and I'm not spending more than $5 on a soul record. I do constantly hunt for a Jackie Wilson record with "The Closer You Get" on it. That's one of my all time favorite songs. I have it on my computer, but haven't listened to it in forever. Let me know if you come across one.

No need for a "review" of this record. Everyone knows it's a classic. I'm glad to own it.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Day 201

Peter Gabriel- So

How do you not hear "In Your Eyes" and not envision Lloyd Dobler holding a boom box over his head outside Diane Court's window? Impossible if you ask me.

Yes, I am a huge fan of the movie Say Anything and it was where I first heard "In Your Eyes". I couldn't hear enough of that song. Listening to it again tonight and I still think it's one of the best love songs of all time. So obviously the video will be posted below in a minute.

I didn't get into this album at all when it first came out in 1986. I did always like "Sledgehammer" and "Big Time", but never enough to buy it. It's great listening to it now because it sounds so fresh. Doesn't sound like an 80's album at all. And that's not knocking the 80's, you know I love that decade, but this album doesn't really sound dated to me at all. I guess that's the Daniel Lanois effect.

I really do need to get me more Peter Gabriel solo albums. I always dug other tunes of his like "Shock The Monkey", "Solsbury Hill", and "Games Without Frontiers". Shame on me for not already have these albums. But it's not like you see them that often in the used bins.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Day 200

Jan Gabarek Group- Wayfarer

Day 200! Let me see the number of hands of people who thought I'd make it this far. I did have my doubts, but I'm completely sucked in now getting to 1000. But 800 more days really is a loooong ways away!

So I don't really know much about Jan Gabarek, but two things made me keep this record when I pulled it out of a grab bag box. First off, this album was on ECM, the Jazz powerhouse label that's also home to Keith Jarrett and Pat Metheny among others. Secondly, when I looked at the liner notes, I saw that Bill Frisell was in his band during this recording so I had to keep it. I love Bill Frisell. Oops, there's someone I left off my list of F's.

It is a pretty decent album. But a few tracks get dull after hitting the 5 minute mark. After awhile, I can only take so much when it comes to weird sax solos. Frisell's sounds as good as always though. Best tune on here is "Gesture", the opening track.

I doubt I'd keep any other Jan Gabarek records, but I'm cool with having at least this one in my collection.

I couldn't find anything off of youtube that had a cut from this album, so here's Jan Gabarek playing with Keith Jarrett. It's a lot more mellow that anything on this album though.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Day 199

The Frames- For The Birds

This album could potentially be #1 on my list of best albums of the Aughts. I didn't make one, so it's a moot point. I only recently purchased it on vinyl, but let's just say if I had originally bought it on cassette, I bet I would have warped it from playing it so much. It's just that good.

Glen Hansard, in my book is one of the best songwriters out there today. He can crush you with songs like "Headlong" and "What Happens When The Heart Just Stops", but also write a helluva good rockin' tune like "Early Bird" and "Santa Maria", which may be my favorite on the album.

Also love that it opens with an instrumental. I've played numerous scenarios in my head where "In the Deep Shade" can be played in my wedding coming up. It's just that beautiful.

As far as I know, this is the only Frames album available on vinyl, but I do hope that they release the whole catalog on wax. I know the Swell Season stuff has made in on vinyl, and although I do like them, I much prefer The Frames. Here's hoping that Glen keeps them going.

That's it for the letter F. So a few bands I still need to get are Foghat, Ace Frehley, Flight Of The Conchords, The Faces (need some asap!), Flotsam & Jetsam, Flying Burrito Brothers, Foo Fighters, Feelies, and no I don't need any Fugazi. I obviously did not grow up listening to punk.
Let me know if I'm forgetting anybody. Thanks.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Day 198

Foster& Lloyd- Faster & Llouder

I've been looking forward to getting to this records. I got it a few weeks ago, but saved it for this blog since I knew they were coming up.

If "New Country" ended up sounding like this, I would be a fan of "New Country". Foster & Lloyd knew how to incorporate country music and rock & roll, but not make it sound cheesy like today's "country" artists or sound like a Southern rock party band. They just write smart, thoughtful songs and could rock it when necessary. Just listen to title track "Faster & Louder" if you don't believe me.

I'm stoked that they have decided to get back together. Looking forward to seeing them play at SXSW this year. Something tells me that even after being defunct for 20 years, they are still going to kill it. Hopefully these young "country" bands out in Nashville will take notice and think, "Oh, so that's how it's done!"

Friday, March 4, 2011

Day 197

Foreigner- Agent Provocateur

Painful. That's the best way I can describe listening to this record. If this was their debut record, they would have been considered one hit wonders.

I do still like the song "That Was Yesterday" but that's the only song worth a damn on here. Everyone knows "I Want To Know What Love Is" and the rest is just keyboard heavy 80's schlock. They should be ashamed of themselves now for making this record. C'mon Foreigner! You're a rock and roll band!

Sucks ending the Foreigner run on a sour note. Just like I did with the 8 day Jackson Browne run. I should just throw away all the records I have that were recorded in the 80;s by bands that kicked ass in the 70's. Except for Rush. And Bruce. And maybe, Judas Priest. But that's it!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Day 196

Foreigner- Records

This is Foreigner's "greatest hits" album that came out in '82, so if you are looking for that whiny "I Want To Know What Love Is" crap, you're S.O.L. That came out on the next studio record.

Definitely the record you should pick up if you are a fair-weathered Foreigner fan. I think even Jessica would probably recognize every song on here except maybe "Dirty White Boy" and "Long Long Way From Home". She's probably in the other room right now pulling her hair out while I'm listening to this. I threatened her the other night that I'm going to have our wedding DJ play "Waiting For A Girl Like You" as our first song instead of the one we have picked out. Ha!

It is a bummer that "Blue Morning, Blue Day" isn't on here. But other than that, you can't really complain about the song choices. Besides the tunes I already mentioned, you also have "Cold As Ice", "Double Vision", "Head Games", "Feels Like The First Time", "Urgent", "Juke Box Hero", and "Hot Blooded". See, it's a fair weathered fan's wet dream.

Here's a taste of Kelly Hansen fronting Foreigner. Just isn't right...

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Day 195

Foreigner- 4

This is Foreigner's only #1 album on the charts, but I don't think their best album at all. Really great singles like, "Juke Box Hero", "Waiting For A Girl Like You, and "Urgent" that helped propel it to that status, but overall, the album is a little weak. Definitely not as strong as Double Vision is.

After "Urgent" leads off Side 2, the rest of the tracks are somewhat forgettable. Kinda funny how their first album in the 80's and the quality of the rock and roll sound took two steps back. Just more proof that the 70's were the best decade for music in my book!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Day 194

Foreigner- Head Games

Third album by Foreigner and they are still bringing it.

When I first got this album, the only songs I recognized by title where "Dirty White Boy" and "Head Games", but it is well worth the .99 cents I payed for it. It's a real clean copy too. Funny how an album that has sold 5 million copies can now be found for so cheap.

It's also funny to me that people knock me for liking this band. There's a reason why they sold millions of albums. The shit is good.

99% of bands today would kill to sell 5 million copies of their album. Think about it this way, between 1977 and 1982, Foreigner released 4 studio albums and one Greatest Hits package and this album was this wost selling album in that period. Incredible.

So I found out that Lou Gramm is playing after a Round Rock Express game this July? Should I go? I do love baseball. But is seeing Lou Gramm not in Foreigner going to suck? Vice versa with going to see Foreigner now. I don't want to see them with the lead singer from Hurricane!