It is time for another Album Ranking and this time we are doing the Aussie band Wolfmother. Since they only have 5 studio albums, I threw in the 2 solo albums by lead singer, Andrew Stockdale. I had to since Wolfmother is really just Andrew Stockdale anyway. The band broke on to the scene back in 2005 and brought back the old 70’s style metal with the black sabbath type lyrics, distorted guitars as well as some psychedelic wonderment. The band has had numerous line-up changes and the only constant is Andrew so we might as include his solo albums as they aren’t that too far removed from the Wolfmother sound.
For me, I love their sound as it brings back so many memories of the 70’s metal bands. I dig the distortion and that high pitched howl of Stockdale. The band wore their influences on their sleeves and although not original sounding, their sound felt fresh and alive. As a result, I wanted to bring you a list of how I rank their albums from Worst to First and away we go…
For My Sunday Song #219, we are discussing a song called “Modern Love” by Matt Nathanson. The song is the title track on his album ‘Modern Love’ which was released on June 21, 2011. This song was the fourth single off the album and though it didn’t chart it is still a shining light on this album.
What I love about this song is it cynicism. The song seems to be inspired by the “hook-up” culture of the younger generation. This poor girl is tired of “all of these salesmen” who are serving up lie after lie. She is tired of no one wanting to be committed to anything. She is done with it, no more sleeping around, no more bullshit and she is just plain done. I love the line…“Oh this modern love is a taco truck”…Matt stated in an interview that the line is about the fact people stand there and eat the food without actually sitting down and enjoying the meal which is how people are treating relationships. With Tinder and other disappointing apps, it is a fast food world of relationships. I believe he is spot on.
Musically, the song is an upbeat, pop song that is full of life and joy even though the lyrics aren’t truly happy thoughts. That is one of the joys of Matt’s music is that the lyrics and music often contradict themselves. The music is full of bouncy keyboard/horn sounds, a nice danceable groove and some simple guitar playing that all blends together in to a happy musical experience.
Another Friday of new releases and this one is jammed pack full of over 20 new albums. And these are the only the ones I chose to list. I would venture to say there should be at least one thing of interest to you in this list, if not, well…sorry. I have only 2 albums I want and one I actually already have. My choices are in Blue. Let me know what you want to hear and let me know what I might have missed as there usually is. Thanks for stopping by and I hope you all have a wonderful Weekend!!
Beastie Boys – Beastie Boys Music – (Capitol Records): I am a casual Beastie Boys fan so a greatest hits album is really perfect for me. I do have License to Ill because everyone should have that one. I don’t have this on order but maybe I will put in on my Christmas List!!
Smith & Myers – Volume 2 – (Atlantic Recording): The Shinedown boys of Brent Smith and Zach Myers are back with Volume 2 after only 2 weeks since Volume 1. And let me tell you, Volume 1 was great so this should be more of the same. It is usually all acoustic (with an electric thrown in every now and then) and some great covers. I think they are going to put this on vinyl so yes, another Christmas List item!!!
Kiss had released the ‘Music from the Elder’ back in November 1981 and it flopped. The record company was in a panic and needed to get something out so people could forget about the disaster that was ‘the Elder’ so what do they do? Well, they put out a compilation. Phonogram (the band’s European label) requested Kiss go back in and record some new songs for the compilation which they gladly did…well a couple of them gladly did. Ace was pretty much done with Kiss back in 1981 and wasn’t involved at all with any of the new songs. However, he wouldn’t leave the band until after the next album in late 1982. Gene played on them (I think), but didn’t sing or write as he was pretty busy either with his girlfriend Diana Ross or making movies.
The heavy lifting was left to Paul and Eric. Paul wrote or co-wrote all the songs and sang on all of them. The label and band brought in a bunch of outside writers including Mikel Japp, who co-wrote with Paul on his solo album, Adam Mitchell, who would write a lot on the next album ‘Creatures of the Night’, and lastly some guy named Bryan Adams. All the drum work was done by Eric Carr and the late Bob Kulick handled all the lead guitar work just as he did on Alive II, with rhythm guitar on one song done by Mikel Japp. So, I guess it is still Kiss.
For this version of the The Original Vs The Cover we have yet another threepeat with the song “Hide Your Heart” which was original performed by Bonnie Tyler, then Kiss and then Ace Frehley all within a couple years. The song was written by Paul Stanley of Kiss along with the great Desmond Child and Holly Knight. The song was originally written for the Kiss album ‘Crazy Nights’ but didn’t make the cut so Paul shopped it around and Bonnie Tyler wound up with it. Kiss then put it on their next album and the same month, Ace Frehley, formerly of Kiss, did the song for his album ‘Trouble Walkin’.
After the success Desmond Child had with “Livin’ On a Prayer’ with Bon Jovi, Paul Stanley wanted to write a song in that same vein. Instead of Tommy and Gina, we get a cheap knock-off version of Johnny and Rosa. The problem with their relationship wasn’t the hardships of life, but that Rosa had a boyfriend named Tito who sounds like a gang leader in the shady part of town. Already, we know Rosa has bad taste in men. The story doesn’t end well like Tommy and Gina did. Basically this was a poor man’s version of “Livin’ on a Prayer” and the storyline sucked and was a total rip-off. It was too formulaic and Kiss was trying to chase trends at the time instead of being a leader and this was a perfect example of the trash that came out as a result. I guess it is pretty obvious I hate this song so why I am writing about it? Because I need to get it off my chest that I hate this song…I really don’t like it.
The song was never a big hit for any of the artist as it never cracked the Top 40. Even more proof of how bad this song really is. Enough about my distaste for the song, let’s get to the performances so I can get this over with and put out of my misery (ha!).
I know, I know…what am I, 5 years old!! At least that is what my wife thinks, but when I saw these at the store and for only $5 a piece, I had to have them. Why? Because it is Def Leppard and I like collecting things that are Def Leppard.
Yes, Funk Pop! have released a set of figurines for each current member of Def Leppard. And they do a pretty good job on getting it right, but I have a few complaints. First, who do they have?
As you know if you visit my site, one of my favorite bands is Needtobreathe. I have everything they have put out on vinyl and now I am going after everything they have released on CD (that they don’t have on vinyl). And the CDs I want the most are the exclusive fan club CDs they release each year.
If you join the Needtobreathe Insiders fan club (for $70 a year), you get a Live CD of tracks collected from the band’s live performances throughout their career (among other things such as a Needtobreathe Mug, a key chain and a free live track download ever month – that is 12 more songs or maybe the same tracks that will be on the CD, not sure yet on that). Needtobreathe actually records every show they put on so they have a ton of tunes to choose from. They have released 6 volumes and number 7 will be coming in December which I will get as I have now joined the club. I had never joined prior so getting my hands on these has not been easy as it is not cheap. I am looking for the right price and most of the time it is too high. I finally grabbed my first one at a price less than the membership fee which was Insiders LP Vol. 2 for $40 and 9 months later I got one even cheaper which was Vol. 5 and it was only $25. And then a couple days later got another for $27 which is this one Vol. 3. Sorry we aren’t going in order, but we are going in order of when I receive them.
For My Sunday Song #218, we are going to discuss the song “Used to Be” by Matt Nathanson off his album ‘Sings His Sad Heart’ that was released on October 5, 2018 just a couple short years ago. The album is one of my favorites as it is one of the saddest albums you will ever hear, but the music doesn’t necessarily match that sadness. They are a beautiful contradiction.
“Used to Be”, however, is not that contradiction. The music and lyrics are both sad although that sadness is more nostalgia. The singer is looking back about an old flame and he is missing her so much. He is letting her know that if she is starting to forget those memories, he can help her remember. Basically, the person he is jonesing for has completely moved on, but he can’t move forward. He is stuck in the past. There is a line in the song that is so brilliant and one of the coolest lines I’ve ever read…
And if you’re having trouble, baby, holding on to memories I’ve got a king-sized bed and a Ph.D. in the way it used to be
“King-sized be and a PH.D. in the way it used to be”, I don’t know…it just sounds so perfect. This part of the chorus just sinks in and grabs you and is so memorable, you can’t help but sing along and it starts to feel like an old friend you’ve known forever. Matt has a way of writing that sounds so familiar and comfortable. He writes for the everyday person and although his stuff is so personal to him, it is the same thing everyone else is feeling or have felt at some time in the life.
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 – The Struts – ‘Strange Days’
Never Heard Before – Patti Smith – ‘Horses”
Not My Normal Genre – Lauryn Hill – ‘The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill’
From My Collection – Prince & the Revolution – ‘Purple Rain’
From My Collection – The Police ‘Synchronicity’
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.
Check out the LeBrain Train: 2000 Words or More with Mike Ladano tonight at 7pm on Facebook & Youtube (at Mike Lebrain). I will be joining him as well as Kevin, the legend himself, from Buried on Mars. It should be a fun night talking AC/DC’s new album, the new Iron Maiden album and a ton more releases coming your way. Come join in on the conversation!!
The LeBrain Train – 2000 Words or More with Mike Ladano Episode 32 We were supposed to talk about the upcoming big releases in music last week — and then King Edward died. Devastating. We needed to talk about Eddie. But now, we’ll talk some AC/DC, Iron Maiden, Sloan and more! The angle is based […]