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Monthly Archives: April 2009

The Replacements – Reissues

 

They came, they saw, they conquered… sort of. Minneapolis’ Replacements were one of the great rock and roll bands that never quite was. And happily so. In the 1980s, after punk fizzled and rock was slicking itself to pander to FM radio, the Replacements were a breath of fresh air. Or more correctly, a beer […]

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Jimi Hendrix – Live at Monterey

 

Forty years after the fact, some people (people who weren’t around at the time) might say that Jimi Hendrix wasn’t all that revolutionary. These people would be wrong. There had been sonic experimentation prior to Hendrix (prominently by Jeff Beck and Pete Townshend), and some of Hendrix’s influences were blues players and the R&B chordal […]

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Doc Watson – Best of Sugar Hill

 

Doc Watson is such an icon of American music and the country and bluegrass fields that it would be impossible to point to one recording and pin down his best work. This collection though, does a nice job of picking some of his finest effort, not only as a guitarist, but as a singer and […]

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Electric Prunes – Release of an Oath

 

The ’60s produced some mighty weird bands, perhaps none odder than the Electric Prunes. The group is primarily known for its 1967 hit “I Had Too Much to Dream (Last Night)” and the album Mass in F Minor, a Catholic mass sung entirely in Latin. 1968′s Release of an Oath was the band’s forth release, […]

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Walter Becker – Circus Money

 

Walter Becker is the stringed part of the Steely Dan equation, and like partner Donald Fagen has taken his time coming up with a solo record to follow his 11 Tracks of Whack from 1994. This album is dominated by sinewy, jazz-based songs with slinky guitars, funky bass, and lots of odd keyboard and horn […]

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Mike Zito – Today

 

Mike Zito’s debut disc is brimming with Texas-style fire and soul, even though he’s from St. Louis! Zito uses a variety of Strat tones and employs chops chock full of soul. His vocals have a throaty, pinched delivery, and his songs here are well-written, with nods to funk, blues, and modern rock. “Universe” is a […]

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Alex Woodard – Alex Woodard

 

When Alex Woodard was a kid, his sister spoonfed him the music of her favorite rocker, Tom Petty. Five albums later, the effect still holds. Woodard’s arrangements, phrasing, and even the timbre of his voice combine to make much of this album sound like a songwriter’s demo for Petty. But a whole lot of Woodard […]

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Jim Lauderdale – Honey Songs

 

When Gram Parsons, Mike Nesmith, and Gene Clark were making their best music, major country radio stations ignored them. It wasn’t much of a jump from Hank Williams Jr. and Charlie Daniels to the Allman Brothers, Lynyrd Skynyrd, the Flying Burrito Brothers, Poco, and other country-compatible bands. But they got the big brush off, too. […]

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Denny Jiosa – Dreams Like This

 

Denny Jiosa is a player of immense chops and fire, and while jazz dominates this album, Jiosa is also at home with R&B and pop, and cuts like “Forward Motion” give him the chance to show off his inventive soloing and strong use of melody. Almost every cut here sticks. Jiosa is a master of […]

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Pete Levin

 

As with his last record, keyboard whiz Levin concentrates on the organ and invites outstanding guitarists to join him. Among those taking part here are John Cariddi, Mike DeMicco, Jesse Gress, and the late Joe Beck, one of the unsung heroes of jazz guitar of the past 30 years. Beck’s airy solo on “Where Flamingos […]

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