1. Broadway- Black Girls
Ok- i will just be up-front in admitting to a bit of nepotism here, albeit of the smallest variety...kind of like a 2nd cousin twice-removed of nepotism: I am old friends with two sisters in Richmond, and their younger brother is in this band. There- i said it. Regardless, I had been hearing about these guys (not a one of them either female nor African-American) for quite awhile without having a chance to check them out, but when I finally did (at the Southern, and then again at the Jefferson), I was pretty impressed. They really go for it in a glammy art-rocke sort of way, and I can be a sucker for that sort of thing on occasion. I actually think they are stronger live at this point then their recording suggests, but it is a strange and interesting first album, and worth checking out, esp. since they are regional fellas...can't Richmond and C-ville play nice, ya'll?
Anyway- playing this song set me off on a glammy art-rocke sort of set, which included an olde favorite favorite:
2. so into you- Shudder to Think
This song has to be one of the craziest and most abstract covers ever...yes, it is "So Into You" by the Atlanta Rhythm Section, but so totally deconstructed that it is not at all recognizable as such until maybe 2/3rds of the way through, when you get a little "oooh woo hoo" from Craig Wedren, and even then you would likely have had to grow up listening to 70's fm radio in the backseats of cars as a kid to place it.
Shudder to Think's "Pony Express Album" (which this tune is on) had to be one of the weirdest major-label debuts ever (they went from Dischord to Epic), and also yielded one of the weirdest hit singles of the 90's, "X-french Tee-Shirt"...anyone else remember that jam from the summer of '94?
3. Lonesome Warrior- Eric Bachmann
So I think Eric Bachmann is great...I will go ahead and just say I consider him to be one of the best singer/ songwriters of our generation, and I hope one day he will be widely known as such. Archers of Loaf, Barry Black, Crooked Fingers, plus his solo album...good lord, that's a lotta good music since 1993.
Although I was playing the new Crooked Fingers song "Tyhoon" in advance of their show at the Camel in Richmond this Sunday, I had to play "Lonesome Warrior" as well off his solo album "To the Races", which is amazing, and worth finding on vinyl if you can, as the title cut is different than on the cd and just incredibly beautiful. Here's the video for this song if you want to see it...Eric at his best, heart on his sleeve and recording in a hotel room, showing what seem to be incredibly personal home movies while he breaks your heart with yet another gorgeous song:
Maybe go check him out in Richmond this Sunday...he's a heroic mofo.
4. ffunny ffriends- Unknown Mortal Orchestra
This song represents one of the great things about volunteering at the station...this came from a regular listener who called in and told me I would probably really like this band...and guess what? They were absolutely right. My dj partner Courtney is good like that also...if she says I will like it, that jonk is usually verdad. (that means the thing is true...I get carried away sometimes.)
But anyway- the point is, this whole album is a lot of fun, and when I played this song I got a call from ANOTHER listener, who had just figured out how to play it on guitar while listening to the show. Nice.
I recommend it to all now, and have had another call from the first listener and have some new stuff to check out, and that is a good thing.
5. the Ballad of the Pines- Jonathan Wilson
See what I mean? I got this one from Courtney, my esteemed partner in audio crime. And good golly but Mr. Wilson's "Gentle Spirit" album is good. It's better than good.
Granted, you have to be able to handle some sprawling, stoney, epic, 70's sounding west-coast rock stylings, but if you like that sort of thing, let me tell you: you cannot go wrong with this record. 13 songs and 78 minutes...you get the picture...it's a big smoky slab of rocke with a good many of the songs weighing in over the six minute mark. You might consider dusting off your headphones for this one...
So those are my picks from my last show...you can still stream it from the tapevault until next Tuesday, when I will be back in the chair for the next show...hope you'll be tuned in, good people.