Ida Mae – Concert Review (Charlotte, NC on May 15th, 2019)

The opening act for Greta Van Fleet was a duo named Ida Mae.  It is a husband and wife duo out of England who now reside in Nashville, Tennessee.  At least they have for the last 10 months as they just moved to the States to seriously pursue this thing called music.  The husband is Chris Turpin on guitar and vocals and his lovely wife Stephanie Jean also on vocals.

And they are all you got as the opening act.  It was just Chris and Stephanie on stage for their 6 song set.  And let me tell you that was all you need as they were beyond impressive.  They did some covers and played some of their original songs for an album that will not be released until June 7th.

They were selling that album though at the Merch table and, of course, I picked it up on vinyl (review will come later as I need time to dive into it fully).  I wanted to get them to sign it, but since they didn’t come out until after the show, I was unable to hang around and wait.  My kids had to go to school the next morning and it was already 10:45 and we still had to drive 45 minutes home.

Anyway, about the music.  The setlist was as follows:

  1. My Girl is A Heartbreak
  2. Me and My Chauffeur Blues (Memphis Minnie cover)
  3. What Did the Deep Sea Say (Woody Guthrie cover)
  4. Reaching
  5. Boom Boom Boom
  6. Feel Them Getting Closer

Continue reading “Ida Mae – Concert Review (Charlotte, NC on May 15th, 2019)”

Friday New Releases – May 17th

Happy Friday and thankfully the weekend is here.  It is time for sun and fun and new music.  There a few releases this week, but only a couple that I am really interested in and they will be highlighted in Blue.  Take a look through and let me know what you are interested in hearing or buying and if there is anything I might have missed as that is known to happen.  Thanks and have a wonderful weekend!!

  • 71qH4BeDx+L._SX522_  Crazy Lixx – Forever Wild – (Frontiers Records): One of many Swedish hard rock and glam metal scene and they have been around since 2002.  Only two original members left and they are Danny Rexon (Lead Singer) and Joel Cirera (Drums) and I am okay with it.  They have hit and missed sometimes, but I am still interested in what they have to offer because it will probably be fun.

  • 71HPj4+fyzL._SX522_  Paul Gilbert – Behold Electric Guitar – (Mascot Label Group):  The guitar extraordinaire from Mr. Big is back with another solo album.  With a title like ‘Behold Electric Guitar’, I think you know what you are about to hear.  More electrifying guitar work from a master player.  How could this not be great?  I guess we will find out soon enough.

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Matt Nathanson – ‘At the Point’ – Album Review

For the regulars of my site, they already know I am a huge Matt Nathanson fan.  For those non-regulars, I will let you know I am a huge Matt Nathanson fan.  I have been re-exploring his earlier catalog lately and I want to point out a great live set he has available called ‘At the Point’.

‘At the Point’ was recorded, well, at The Point.  The Point is an intimate club in Philadelphia, PA.  It was recorded in the Summer of 2005 and released in 2006.  It is only Matt and his acoustic guitar.  Nothing or no one else.

What I love about this album is it is a lot of his old songs from before my discovery of Matt which was around 2007 or so.  The album showcases his live performance, his ability to own a crowd, his comedic stylings (he is one funny SOB), his voice and most importantly his songwriting and musicianship.

From such classics as “Church Clothes”, “Answering Machine”, “Curve of the Earth” and “I Saw” to his cover of Dire Straits’ “Romeo and Juliet” and Drivin’ N Cryin’s “Straight to Hell”, you get lost in his performances as they are delivered so flawlessly and seem so personal.  You get laughs as he tells stories that will have you laughing your ass off and you just get an hour and seven minutes of pure enjoyment.  This is what a live album should be.  Something you can feel and connect with.

Continue reading “Matt Nathanson – ‘At the Point’ – Album Review”

Billy Idol – “Speed” (from the Speed Soundtrack) – Single Review (The Billy Idol Series)

After the lack of success of ‘Cyberpunk’, Billy Idol was pretty quiet for many years with one minor exception.  He reunited with Steve Stevens for a song on the 1994 Soundtrack to the movie Speed starring Keanu Reeves.  Billy was having some disagreements with his label and having many issues with drugs (still), he needed something to get back in the fans good graces.

Billy and Steve were contacted by the soundtracks music director, Ralph Sall, to come up with the movie’s title song and Billy thought this would be a good opportunity.  The song was inspired by the movie and the rest of the soundtrack included songs that were either inspired by the movie or were just songs about Speed such as the Kiss song “Mr. Speed”.

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Track Listing for the Soundtrack

I am not reviewing the whole soundtrack as this is a Billy Idol series so we will focus only on Billy’s song.  And what a song it is.  It didn’t do well upon its release as this was 1994 and Billy’s style of Rock was no longer in fashion.  The movie did way better than the song for sure.

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Tuesday’s Memes – Live Music

Who doesn’t love to see music live?  Whether it is a stadium show or a nice, intimate bar, live shows are way for people to connect to an artist and their music.  For me, I love the smaller, more personal clubs as you can really connect with the artist.  I also love to see how they interpret their songs live and the little nuggets they throw in for fun.  Today, we celebrate that with a collection of memes celebrating live music.

Today’s kids just don’t get it…

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Rob Thomas – ‘Chip Tooth Smile’ – Album Review

Rob Thomas has sort of been absent from my existence for quite some time.  And that is on purpose.  Years ago, I got a little Rob Thomas burn out.  So, I stopped listening to him and Matchbox Twenty.  When I saw he had a new album coming out, I figured it was time to open up my world to a little Rob Thomas again.

Rob’s last album was ‘The Great Unknown’ back in 2015 and after 4 years, he thought it was time to come back with some new music.  So, the album came out and I dropped the needle (not really, I pushed play on my phone but you get the point).  The album is 12 songs and at less than 40 minutes in length, it was a quick listen.  Almost perfect for my drive to work.

And what do you get?  You get a simple set of songs that are so well crafted and so catchy and pure pop bliss.  Rob has delivered an album that is so spot on and refreshing that you walk away with such a big smile after listening that you have to hit repeat and play it again.  Maybe my time away has made me long for that great voice and the Rob Thomas sound, but whatever it is, this album is that jolt of lightning I needed and has quickly become a favorite for the year.

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My Sunday Song – “Poundcake” by Van Halen

For My Sunday Song #143, we have “Poundcake” off  Van Halen’s 1991 album For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge (or F.U.C.K. for short).  The song was the first single off the album and went straight to #1 on the Billboard Album Rock Tracks chart.  The song was also the first song on the album which was one hell of a way to open an album.

The song comes firing at you with a freaking power drill.  That is right.  The song opens with a power drill being played through Eddie’s guitar.  Playing it near or against the strings allows the guitar pickups to actually “pick up” the sound.  It was totally cool as there seems there is nothing Eddie can not do with a guitar.  It was so popular, that Eddie painted up a drill in the Frankenstrat motif to use in the video and tour.

That wasn’t the only cool thing about the song.  The rest of the guitar sounds were great as well.  Eddie beefed things up playing a 12 string throughout for the rhythm guitar as well as his normal guitar for the solo.  And let me tell you that solo was something else too.  Eddie pulls out all the tracks accompanied by the heart pounding drums of his brother Alex.  It is one of those songs I liked more for the music than the actual lyrical content of the song.

Lyrically, the song is about being real.  Most people are fake and pretend to be something they are not.  It is sexier if you are just who you are, no pretentiousness or b.s. of any kind.  If you can find a woman (or a man) that is who they say they are, then get a hold of that and wrap it up nice and tight.  Poundcakes are simple, there isn’t anything to hide.  What you see is what you get so I guess that is why they chose that as its title.

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Friday New Releases – May 10th

Happy Friday!!  It is when there are new releases that I want and this has a few.  Some I will buy and some I will stream, but it is new music and that is what I look forward to on Fridays…well that and the work week ending.  Let me know what you are looking forward to hearing this weekend and let me know if I am missing anything.  Mine are marked in Blue.  Have a great listening weekend!!

  • 81SGZps2uQL._SS500_  Whitesnake – Flesh and Blood – (Frontiers Records):  The first album with Joel Hoekstra on lead guitar and around 8 years since the last album of new material.  That is quite a break.  Now, I haven’t listened to anything yet as I want to listen to it all for the first time at once.  I hope it is heavy, loud and simply fantastic.

  • 71WHiV6RogL._SS500_  Sammy Hager & the Circle – Space Between – (BMG):  Sammy and Micheal Anthony seemed to be joined at the happy and Michael is part of every project Sammy does (except the Tequila business).  This one throws Vic Johnson on guitar and Jason Bonham on drums.  Another one I haven’t listened to anything yet. I will take it all in at one time.

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Paul Laine – The Albums Ranked Worst to First

After doing the Danger Danger Album Ranking, I thought why not continue and do all of Paul Laine’s albums as well.  So, here we are with Paul Laine’s albums ranked Worst to First!.  Who is Paul Laine you might ask?  I will tell you.

Paul is a singer, songwriter, musician, producer from Vancouver, Canada.  He started out as a solo artist way back in 1990 and later joined the band Danger Danger as their lead singer.  He also formed a band called Shugaazer, a band called Darkhorse and a band called The Defiants.  He likes band names that start with “D” except for Shugaazer so not sure what he was thinking there.

Paul is a gifted singer and sings mostly Rock and his voice has matured nicely over the years.  It has gone from a wild-untamed sound to a more controlled, smooth instrument.  And he has even delved into Country music (more on that later).

I have followed his career from the beginning thanks to working at Sam Goody back in 1990.  His CD came in to the store as a promo copy (and I played it a lot) and when it was time for that CD to retire from the playlist, yours truly got to take it home with him.  It was from that point on, that Paul could do no wrong (even though he has had a few missteps).

It is out of that fandom, I bring you this list.  Enjoy!!

THE WORST – ANDERSEN, LAINE, READMAN – THREE (2006):

This is an interesting side project from Andre Andersen.  Andre is the keyboardist and composer in the band Royal Hunt.  Andre brought in two sensational voices to split the songs.  You have David Readman of Pink Cream 69 and Paul Laine.  They each get 5 songs and for the most part the songs rock and as a set is pretty cool.

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Billy Idol – ‘Cyberpunk’ – Album Review (The Billy Idol Series)

After ‘Charmed Life’, Billy wanted to do something different.  He didn’t want to keep repeating his previous work over and over again.  Let me tell you he completely succeeded.  The album is nothing like his previous work and I think was way ahead of its time. ‘Cyberpunk’ delivered Billy’s most experimental and most controversial album.

Billy became fascinated with technology and the cyberpunk movement of the early 90’s.  He saw how the advancement could be used to make music and in fact, this was one of the first albums to use ProTools for almost the entire recording of the album. He felt the use of the computers allowed him to do things faster and he felt it gave the whole feel of a garage band.  I don’t know about that last part, but it was the very early stages of how albums and music would be recorded down the road.

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When he released the single for “Shock to the System” he released it with a 3 1/2″ Floppy Disc.  MP’s eat your heart out.  The disc housed pictures, bios and all the things you now see issued in todays electronic press kits (EPK).  He was also was one of the first albums to actually have an email address in the booklet that came with the album (don’t try it, it no longer works).

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