Saturday, December 10, 2011

Awds and Enz

We're all agreed that Adele's "Rolling in the Deep" is the most overplayed, most overrated song of 2011, right? It's also the most downloaded song of the year, according 2 iTunes. & it'll probly clean-up at the Grammys, which I think is 2 bad.
There's no question Adele can sing, & I can understand why the rhythm locks the song in2 people's heads -- it locked in2 my head after a coupla listenings, & I don't even LIKE it.
4 me, the best thing in the song is Adele's background singers going "You're gonna wish that/You had never met me...."
BUT. Has NE1 heard what I assume is her follow-up, a little number called "Set Fire to the Rain"? I heard it 4 the 1st time Fri nite at work, & it's pretty great. I was grabbed immediately by the drama, & it's got great choruses. I'm looking 4ward 2 hearing it again.
It even makes up 4 "Rolling in the Deep"....

Seattle-area radio has Bcome a little more boring. Over Thanksgiving, the good folks at "The Mountain" 103.7 FM -- which had Bcome my favorite local station -- went from their fairly-wide-open lotsa-new-stuff format 2 Bcome a 2nd-hand album-rock/oldies station just like the rest. I haven't heard the Cowboy Junkies do "Sweet Jane" in a coupla weeks. But I've heard LOTS of what the Other Guys play. 2 bad.
So instead I've stumbled over Seattle's "Click" 98.9 FM, which claims 2 play "Modern Music" -- which can B NEthing from Coldplay's latest stuff (yeccch) 2 Adele 2 Florence + the Machine (including something that I assume is from their 1st album LUNGS, a kinda raucous number called "Dog Days Are Over"), 2 Mumford and Sons ("Little Lyin' Man," "The Cave"), 2 "oldies" from Third Eye Blind & Fall Out Boy & All-American Rejects.
It ain't all great, but some of it ain't bad, & at least they IDENTIFY everything they play, so.... I might get dragged in2 current music yet, kicking & screaming all the way....

Currently re-reading rock critic Robert Christgau's ANY OLD WAY YOU CHOOSE IT (updated edition, 1973/2000), a collection of his early writing that I wasn't that impressed with the 1st time around. But coming on top of David Browne's FIRE AND RAIN (see review below), it has some nice critical counterpoints 2 Browne's work. Good pieces on the Monterey Pop Festival, how much Christgau hates the Eagles, Wilson Pickett, Tom Jones, Captain Beefheart, Bob Dylan, Carole King, Jethro Tull, the Beatles (2gether & apart) & lots more. Worth tracking down.
Am also re-reading Frederik Pohl's THE WAY THE FUTURE WAS (1978), a memoir of his life in science fiction up 2 that time. Great stories about editing the old GALAXY magazine, being an agent 4 most of the SF writers in the field back in the '40s/'50s, editing a magazine at age 19(!), etc. Also a diffrent sorta look at The Futurians than Damon Knight did in his Xcellent (tho 2-short) book on the group (reviewed elsewhere on this blog).
If you wanna C what the 92-year-old Fred is up 2 these days, his blog is at

Be-Bop Deluxe -- Maid in Heaven, Kiss of Light, Sister Seagull.
Gong -- Master Builder, Radio Gnome Invisible, Flying Teapot, The Pot Head Pixies, Zero the Hero and the Witch's Spell.
NOTES: More & more "Maid in Heaven" sounds like a lost classic that cuts off 2 abruptly. If you're a fan of flashy guitar & Roxy-like group sound, you should like this.
By the time of "Kiss of Light," Be-Bop had apparently smoothed-out a little, away from the flashiness. "Sister Seagull" has some nice stratospheric gtr, but not enuf of it. All these R from RAIDING THE DIVINE ARCHIVE/THE BEST OF. Why Rn't "Heavenly Homes" & "Crying to the Sky" on this CD, instead of the clanking & chugging "Ships in the Night"? (Best thing on that is the sax solo.) At least they included the brilliant "Sleep That Burns," the best thing Be-Bop ever did. I assume if they'd tossed in NE of these, then you'd have more than 1/2 of the SUNBURST FINISH album -- & then they wouldn't B able 2 sell you that 1. SUNBURST FINISH is well worth tracking down NEway, if you're in2 flashy gtr & lotsa drama....
"Master Builder" & "Radio Gnome Invisible" R both good waking-up music, nice sax by Didier Mahlerbe & spacey synth from Tim Blake on "Builder." "Flying Teapot" is a very nice riffy-jazzy-floaty 11-minute piece with silly chanting vocals that get really rhythmic & catchy, taking off from the phrase "Hava cuppa tea, now have another one...."
By the time I'm into "Pot Head Pixies" & the 9-min "Zero the Hero and the Witch's Spell," the silly lyrics & vocals start 2 make a kind of sense -- I'm starting 2 LIKE the silliness rather than Bing faintly annoyed. "Witch's Spell" has a nice long, spacey closing riff that unfortunately cuts-off abruptly. All these R from ABSOLUTELY THE BEST OF GONG.
These guys ain't bad. I kinda like this. My Ghod, R the drugz finally kicking in?

1 comment:

R S Crabb said...

Howdy TAD, thanks for your support, I can always count on you for a comment or two to my blogs. I do have the Christgau book around, must have liked it since i bought it again but I so share some of his ire of the Eagles although he did give them some grades to reflect the times. But damn am I sick of Hotel California.

We don't have any new music stations around here anymore. Can't trust the Culumus owned ones, and the evil soft rock is now Christmas Crap till New Year's. Which means the record and cd player will be getting a bit more of a work out. Cheers!