Still I Love YouStill I Love You

0 Comments 8:29 am

by Candy Dulfer

~ Lyrical instrumentals ~

Honestly, it’s not hard to imagine that they’re actually is a set of lyrics and a melody written that Candy Dulfer just completely jettisoned to play the entire thing on her sax. It’s a tender and touching and heartfelt tune that doesn’t rely on words to convey the emotion and you probably thought you would only ever get that out of a blues guitarist and not a contemporary jazz saxophonist in front of a funk band. The live version from the Jazztage concert in Leverkusen in 2009 is insanely awesome.


0 Comments 8:29 am

by Charlatans UK

~ Yes, that’s an organ groove ~

How the hell you get a hit single out of a staccato organ riff, nobody really knows. But some frenetic mid-90s UK Madchester-style beats underneath a droning guitar riff interspersed with some heavy effects-laden shimmering chords and you’ve got another oddball 90s late-night MTV hit. The video is typical shoegazer crap, but on the radio, this was a pretty solid tune for windows-down-driving even if nobody’s bothering to try to sing along and just dancing in their seats.

They’re still around, over 30 years after they were founded, and a huge hit in the UK, where they’ve had three #1 albums, and every studio record has hit the top 40 over there. But in the US? If anyone knows them, it’s this, and maybe one other song.

Hannah JaneHannah Jane

0 Comments 8:29 am

by Hootie & The Blowfish

~ The first song you hear ~

In the Pantheon of all time side one, track one, debut album songs, there are a handful that completely set the stage for what comes out of the rest of that band’s career. “Welcome to the Jungle” from Guns n’ Roses is an obvious standout, as is “Bring da Ruckus” from Wu-Tang clan. This one belongs on that list, not as an all-time great song, but as an all-time template of exactly what you are going to get from that band for the rest of their career: big harmonies, a deep baritone, basic-but-catchy guitar hooks, easy to sing-along songs, and a vibe they can’t help but put you right back in the Carolinas in the springtime.

All The MoneyAll The Money

0 Comments 8:29 am

by Electric Angels

~ Even the fillers were better than many bands’ hits ~

I really fell in love with the album while I was working at the radio station in the early ’90s, about two and a half years after it was released. The songwriting, and especially the lyrical phrasing, is light years ahead of most of the crap on the radio before then and honestly, much of what’s appeared since.

Part of the reason for love of this album was that the love/hate relationship with the lyrics and the ladies in their lives mirrored a lot of what was going on in my life at the time. As a guy with a degree in English, a background in journalism, and with a lot of writing under his belt, the wit and overall literacy of Jonathan Daniel (now a high-powered manager in the music biz) always impressed me, and still does today.

This was never getting released as a hit single, and has always been strictly an album cut. But give the lyrics a second listen and while it’s not like someone set Milton to glam-rock power pop, it’s better than what you’re getting from 90% of what’s on the radio these days. It’s a basic snare-driven hammering beat with some hanging chords in the bridge, and a Ryan letting loose an occasional snaky riff under the lyrics.

Metal Monday: Breaking InsideMetal Monday: Breaking Inside

0 Comments 8:02 am

by Shinedown (with Lzzy Hale)

~ Powerhouse duets, the new generation ~

The 2000s have brought us a bunch of great heavy rock music with far better musicianship and songwriting than we had throughout most of the ’80s. If you were a fan of intricate arrangements and virtuoso performance 35 years ago, then you were either listening to Rush or an occasional prog-metal group. They’ve gone far more mainstream now, and the arrangements and production are a million times better than they were in the LA heyday of hard rock.

Here comes a superpower duet who’s only real ’80s comparable was the Ozzy and Lita duet for “Close My Eyes Forever” – which despite the reverence in which it’s held, is a pretty mediocre song.

This one was originally released by Shinedown by themselves, but Brent trading versus with Lzzy Hale really pumps it up to another level and gives the song far more meaning as both sides of the breakup are breaking inside, not just one of them.

Thorn in my PrideThorn in my Pride

0 Comments 8:49 am

by The Black Crowes

~ They probably still hated each other back then, but figured out how to live with it ~

Here’s a valid question: do the Black Crowes belong in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame? On the balance of their first three albums, you would think so. There’s people in the Hall of Fame with far less distinguished careers: lower quality output, over a shorter time span, with much less influence. 

Expansive, epic songs like this aren’t ever going to make it on the radio but are certainly not filler tracks on their albums. These are songs meant to be played with the rest of the album as you just lay back and settle in with a beer for a great afternoon of rock and roll. It’s a little surprising this one even got a video shot for it, since those are usually reserved for hit singles. While this hit #1 on the US “rock” chart (whatever that is) it only made it to #80 on the more mainstream “pop” charts.

As noted on more than a few of these song entries the production is top-notch. The band layers their sound together incredibly well and every note is perfectly placed. Rich Robinson is still building songs with his lead guitar work and isn’t trying to overwhelm anything, and Steve Gorman knows how to perfectly carry the song with the level of drumming that he provides a different stages in the overall tune.

Headstart For HappinessHeadstart For Happiness

0 Comments 8:02 am

by The Style Council

~ The modfather strikes again ~

How many hit singles with the hum-along riff are played on a fiddle? Seriously? This track from one of their best albums really drives home any number of mid 80s UK society talking points, while doing it in an upbeat and pop-minded track that just sounds great on a sunny afternoon coming out of the car speakers. The backup singers in the vocal chorus include his future wife DC Lee, and lend a more soulful sound to what was otherwise a pretty pale UK pop song

Paul Weller absolutely belongs in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame not just for his chameleon-like career, but for the influence he’s had on so many other artists, especially outside the US. The fact that a ‘filler’ track on the debut album from what was essentially a side project is better than 90% of what was out there at the time should give you some insight into the overall quality of his output.

The actual video is crap. Mick Talbot is hardly ever not seen with a scarf. The dude probably wears one with a swimsuit on the French Riviera in August. The girls pretending to play the horns look like they’re in a hostage video and trying to signal a rescue effort with their eyelids. DC Lee looks like she just rolled out of bed at 2am and told to try to look like she cares. It’s hard to believe they managed completely tank such an upbeat and remarkable tune with a shitty audio mix in the video and the band looking like they’re animatronics from Madame Tussaud’s.