You, my reader, are going to pick an album for me to review each month. It is really simple…first, I will give you 5 albums to choose from and second, you will tell me which one of those you would like to see reviewed on the site. See…simple!
There are a few simple rules I have put in to place in my selections. They are…
One has to be a new release (within the last month)
One has to be one I have never heard before (new releases don’t count for this one)
One has to be from a genre I don’t normally listen to at all or very often
And the last two are choices from my collection that I haven’t reviewed before
What are the 5 albums you ask? Funny you should ask because I have those right here…
New Release – Duran Duran – “Future Past”
Never Heard Before – Big Star – “#1 Record”
Not My Normal Genre – Television – “Marquee Moon”
From My Collection – Stevie Ray Vaughan – “Soul to Soul”
From My Collection – Dokken – “Tooth And Nail”
Let me know which one you would like to see and sometime in November, I will post a review of the album that gets the most votes. You have one week to decide and from there I will start listening to the album and do a review.
Happy Friday. And boy, do we have a ton of releases for you this week. We are bringing you 53 new albums for you to checkout. I know, you will never get to them all as there is no way, so find the ones you want the most and check them out. I have a couple I am going to listen to for sure and a several I will give a spin when I can. Those are all marked in Blue. Now let me know what you want to hear and what I may have missed. Thanks for stopping by and I hope you all have a wonderful weekend.
Sixx A.M. – Hits – (Better Noise Records): Nikki Sixx and the boys are back with a greatest hits package and thankfully we will 6 new tracks and/or new mixes. I really have enjoyed there albums so this will add to the collection and I am sure it sounds better than Cure probably will…oooh…sorry that was harsh.
Duran Duran – Future Past – (Tape Modern / BMG): This is the band’s15th studio album and will feature collaborations with Giorgio Moroder, Mark Ronson, Lykke Li. These guys have been going strong for 40 years and I can say I am interested in to what they have to bring us now. Their releases have been hit or miss with me, but there are always a bunch of tracks I do like so ready to give it a try every time they release a new one.
The band had their break-through album with ‘Toys in the Attic’, then their fourt album, ‘Rocks”, would solidify them as one of America’s greatest rock & roll bands. The album would see the band go a little more raw and heavy as the band really let it loose with this one. They recorded the album at the “Wherehouse” which was the band’s rehearsal space where they took the Record Plant’s mobile recording studio and backed it right in to the space and did their thing. Producer, Jack Douglas, was able to get the band loose and wild, which I am sure the heavy usage of drugs helped. Despite all the drugs being used, the band was clicking and the end result fits the album title perfectly because the band ‘Rocks’.
The album came out on May 14, 1976 and would spawn three singles, two of which hit the Top 40 and would eventually go on to sell over 4 million copies in the U.S. (but not all in the year of release of course). The album would go all the way to #3 on the Billboard Charts and would inspire so many future musicians such as Kurt Cobain, James Hetfield, Nikki Sixx and even Slash all citing this as a major influence in their decision to pursue music. Heck for the longest time, ‘Toys in the Attic’ was always my favorite…now, it is ‘Rocks’! The band was still unchanged with Steven Tyler, Joe Perry, Brad Whitford, Tom Hamilton and Joey Kramer and for this album they were a true band, a single unit and were on fire…but not sure how long that would last.
Alright…You Picked It! And this one was really, really close. There were three going for the gold and one edge them out slightly. It was much closer than last months blow away with that horrendous Captain Beefheart album you guys tortured me with. Thankfully you went easy on me this time. The winder is Candlebox’s ‘Wolves’ which is a new album and as a result, one I’ve never heard. I am glad to have something less challenging this time around as I am still in therapy from the last album. Good news is the crying has stopped.
Candlebox – ‘Wolves’ – 7 votes
MC5 – ‘Kick Out the Jams’ – 5 votes
Guns ‘N Roses – ‘Chinese Democracy’ – 5 votes
Issac Hayes – ‘Hot Buttered Soul’ – 4 votes
Mothers Finest ‘ Another Mother Further’ – 1 Vote
Thanks to all for participating. The November choices will be up on Saturday!
CANDLEBOX – ‘WOLVES’
There are not too many 90’s bands that are still around putting out decent music, but thankfully for us, Candlebox still is. Their last release, 2016’s ‘Disappearing in Airports’, was absolutely stellar. Go check out that review. So I had high hopes for this one. The only original member still in the band is lead singer, Kevin Martin, and since his voice is what I always loved about the band, I am okay with that fact. He still can sing and such a good tone on his vocals.
The band’s old sound was grunge and they were pretty good at it. It was much heavier than we have been given lately and that is okay. The band is older, more mature and have evolved. The sound now is more pop rock with some heavy garage elements at times but more on a softer side at other times and all in a good way. Nothing bad about that change. I applaud that change as grunge is kinda depressing.
When I was on vacation during this past Summer, I found a ton of 45 Singles with the Picture Sleeves at a place called House of Vinyl and I ended buying 7 Van Halen 45’s. And we’ve been through a few so far as seen below…
And now we are on to our sixth of the 7 and we are still in to the Hagar Era and this was the third single off their first album together for ‘5150’ from 1986. The song is “Love Walks In” which was released on July 23, 1986 and went to #22 on the Billboard Hot 100. The song was credited to the whole band as usual, but I believe lyrically it came from Sammy as the song is about Alien Abduction and Sammy has stated he has been. Ok! I am not sure where to really go with that information.
My copy is in a little rough shape with a slight tear at the bottom crease plus someone wrote 15 on the front. But otherwise, it plays well and that is all that matters. This version is the standard single version with “Love Walks In” on the A-Side and the B-Side is “Summer Nights”. Not a bad combo of songs.
A week after the Alice Cooper and Ace Frehley shows at Charlotte Metro Credit Union Amphitheater, I’m back for another show. This time around we are seeing Switchfoot as they open for one of my favorite bands, Needtobreathe. I had never seen Switchfoot and like a lot of their songs so I was excited to see them as they are a great compliment to Needtobreathe. A great double bill.
Now there was an opening act called The New Respects. They are a family band out of Nashville and were pop, funk, rock and a whole lot of fun. The lead guitarists is a young lady by the name of Zandy Fitzgerald who was mad woman on the guitar. She also had a lot of style and you could tell she had some star potential. She was very likable. The interesting thing about The New Respects is they are the background singers for Needtobreathe during the show so very cool that Needtobreathe gave them the opening slot to shine on their own. I don’t have a decent photo of them, but when you get to the Needtobreathe Concert review, they will pop up there so go check that review out as well.
Back to Switchfoot, the band is a rock band out of San Diego, California and lead singer Jon Foreman has the surfing, hippie thing going that brings a certain charm to the band live that you don’t necessarily get in their studio albums. Seeing him perform is a different experience.
I am so glad to be back to live shows and one of the first shows back is Needtobreathe who are one of my favorite bands of all time. Yes, last week I saw Ace Frehley and Alice Cooper which were both spectacular, but this is Needtobreathe. And being my fourth or fifth time seeing them, they did not disappoint as usual. The played for over 2 hours and right up to curfew at the venue and were ready to finish even if they turned off the power because when Needtobreathe (NTB) come to play, they come to play. They are going to give you all of themselves until the a ready to drop and that is exactly what they did.
The band makes a grand entrance with portraits of themselves on the screen and as each member walks out Tyler Burkum on guitar, Randall Harris on drums, Josh Lovelace on keyboards, Seth Bolt on bass and Bear Rineheart on vocals the roar of the crowd grew louder and louder and then the band kicked in to “Alive” and the band was rocking the place down with so much and energy and power. And then when the went in to the song “Great Night”, you knew it was going to be just that.
For me, it was one classic song after another. You get the driving force of “Drive All Night” and then the rebellious “The Outsiders” which I did video the song for my wife as she was sidelined with a migraine and she wanted me to capture some of it for her so I did. At this point, Bear finally took a breathe between songs and then spoke to us for a brief moment before going in to the church revival feel of “Washed By The Water” which ended with parts of their song “Lay ‘Em Down”. It was like going to church.
At this point, the band showed a movie trailer. Yep, a movie trailer. On November 3rd, for one night only, movie theaters will show the documentary ‘Into the Mystery’ which is about the band and the making of their new album during covid. The band quarantined together in a house for three weeks and recorded the album. They said what would normally take them 3 years, they did in 3 weeks. And after the trailer, they played two great songs from their new album. The first was “Sunshine” and the second was “Into the Mystery” which actually included an opening of “Free Fallin'” by Tom Petty first.
They played a few more songs before they took another break and showed a different video. This one was about the charity they work with called For Others which works with a lot of charities in your own city (Charlotte in this case for me) and NTB asked for anyone that could to please donate. So while they played “Multiplied” and “Difference Maker” you could text the number below that they shown on the screen. They were told that it would never work and people wouldn’t do it, but the band had raised over $500,000 on the tour from the fans for the charities and as I said the money stays in the community in the town they played. Something you wouldn’t expect at a show, but cool nonetheless.
After that, the band did some acoustical numbers with the song “Banks” which happened to have a couple in the front row get engaged during the show. Their names were Ashley and Jeremy as the band saw it happened and commented on it. Bear said that after getting engagements, there can be an awkardness but not for those two as they started making out immediately after. The next song “Carry Me” had a special guest. Jon Foreman from Switchfoot came out and sang with Bear and the Band. It was cool how a NTB Tour was like a family event and this wouldn’t be the last time someone came out and sang with them.
The show then kicked back in to gear with the heavier, more upbeat tracks such as “Hang On”, “Hard Love” and “Ridiing High” which got the energy going again and everyone having a good time. If that wasn’t enough on the next song, “Honky Tonk Women” the mic was turned over to the drummer, Randall Harris, who got the crowd in to a wild frenzy as everyone loved the Stone Cover. It was wild time where each band member got up and did a little something to be highlighted. Lots of fun.
After that wild time, the band played one of my all time favorite tracks, “Who Am I” and followed it up with “I Am Yours” which I found rather funny as the titles work well together. Then we get to the final song before the encores and this time the whole family was there. Switchfoot and The New Respects all came out for a wild jam session on the song “When the Levee Breaks”. It was a hell of a good time with so much to look at and let me just show you…
Then we get to the Encore as the crowd were banging the backs of the plastic chairs to make as much noise as they could. The band came out and played “Midnight Special” mixed with “Mercy’s Shore”. They then played a song for the first time on this current tour. Well, we are in North “Carolina” so they player their song “Oh Caroline” and the crowd went nuts. It is a fun song to be played live as it really gets the crowd singing along. As we are now coming up on 11pm and the event curfew, the band was worried they wouldn’t finish and said they will keep singing and playing even if they turn off the sound. They played one of their biggest songs, “Brother” with full crowd participation. What a feeling that must be to have the crowd sing back your song. Luckily the sound was never turned off and the band finished the song with a quick goodnight and over 2 hours of playing and 23 songs. It was another magical night with Needtobreathe.
Here is the setlist…
Drive All Night
Washed by the Water / Lay ‘Em Down
Into the Mystery (Free Fallin’ opening)
Forever On Your Side
Keep Your Eyes Open / Testify
Multiplied / Difference Maker
Carry Me (w/ Jon Foreman)
Honky Tonk Woman (The Rolling Stones Cover w/ the drummer singing)
Who Am I
I Am Yours
When the Levee Breaks (Memphis Minnie & Kansas Joe McCoy Cover with Switchfoot and The New Respects)
Midnight Special / Mercy’s Shore – Encore
Oh, Caroline (first time played on tour) – Encore
Brother – Encore
And did I get some Merch? Yep, I finally bought my first NTB Concert Shirt. I don’t know why I hadn’t before…probably too cheap.
And I took a bunch of pictures so here are a few more to take you out. Thanks for hanging around…
Okay, I’ll leave at that…thanks again for stopping by.
For My Sunday Song #269, we are going to dive in to the song “Even the River Runs Out of This Town” by Will Hoge. Man, I love that song title. The song is off his latest album, 2020’s ‘Tiny Little Movies’. The song didn’t chart, but it is one of the reason why I think this was one of the best albums to come out in 2020 and one of the best Will Hoge has ever done. It is a masterpiece as each song is exactly what the title of the album says they are….tiny little movies.
“Even the River Runs Out of this Town” I thought was about how small town America keeps getting smaller as the young adults keep leaving for the big city which you can interpret it that way. However, the song is about lost love and how he had to let her go. Even though he loved her, she was smothered by that love and that town and needed to leave. He states the highways and the railroads all leave town and that even the river leaves so it must be her turn now. It is quite a beautiful sentiment. The song is his longing for the girl that got away.
Musically, the song is a ballad done on acoustic guitar and Will’s voice. It is stripped down to its bare bones, it is raw and you can feel the pain, the heartache and the longing for his lost love. When the music can be as sad as the lyrics, then he has done something right. Like with a lot of songs of Will’s, the music is handled by nothing but uber talented musicians, but it is the lyrics that are the star and that is the case for any good songwriter.
Another week of over 40 albums being released which means there is something for everyone. Heck, if you make it down to the end there is even a Christmas album by Kelly Clarkson. Yes, it is time for Christmas albums to start coming out. I know, too soon!! I have a handful I would really like to hear and one I’d really like to buy, but KACHING!!! My choices are highlighted in Blue. Let me know what you want to hear and let us know what I may have missed so everyone can see what they might be missing. Thanks so much for stopping by and I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!!
The Alarm – History Repeating: 1981-2021 – (Twenty First Century Recording Co): A Double CD of the band’s 40 year career!! Man, I am feeling old as I have been listening since the beginning. There are are a several unreleased songs as well as all their hits. I believe there are 44 tracks and definitely worth grabbing!!
Judas Priest – Reflections: 50 Heavy Metal Years of Music Box Set: I would love to get the big deluxe box set but it is well over $400 and I am sure worth every penny. I might need to sell some things or take out a second mortgage for this one. After just finishing the Judas Priest Review Series on the site, this would be a great way to top it off!! With a giant cherry on top!! Or you can get the one disc greatest hits album if that floats your boat. Either works.
Rob Zombie never does anything half-assed especially when it comes to his song titles and album titles. ‘The Lunar Injection Kool Aid Eclipse Conspiracy’ is a perfect example of this. The album is Rob’s seventh studio album as a solo artist and might be his opus, his masterpiece, his piece de resistance. The most badass album he has ever made and the fans might agree as it is his first album to reach #1 on the Billboard Top Album Sales Chart after its release on March 12, 2021. I think it is definitely his strongest and most accessible because his past albums usually have some strange shit, but this takes the strangest stuff and packages in a way that has more hooks, more melodies and more of everything that is great about him including more John 5 who is one of my favorite guitarist.
But before we get in to the music, let’s talk about this packaging of the album as it is nothing short of amazing. The back cover is hand-drawn space monster’s in the vein of Planet of the Apes I guess. And check out the names of the songs, nothing simple and straight forward here. The album is also a gatefold with what my one of the coolest pictures of Rob just relaxing with his arms behind his head and probably saying, “Yeah, I’m a cool mother-f’er”…okay he probably would have said the full word.