Friday, February 29, 2008

TVD's Weekend Shots

Washington, DC blogger extraordinaire IntangibleArts DJ's this week's Tangible Ten:

"And now, a taste of heavy space from the IntangibleArts archives. Most of these would be what Julian Cope would call 'head music' and encompasses bits of Krautrock, English space-rock, and American folk-psych. This material represents my birth as a record collector: When I was about 10 or 11 years old, a benevolent older relative took me by the ear and opened up his vast collection of dusty vinyl goodies.

I was already buying my own records at that age, with whatever allowance I wasn't spending on comic books. 1978-ish. My musical universe was limited to the likes of Queen, ELO, and Boston--not a bad beginning really, and I still like all that stuff. But practically overnight, my new world included the heady sounds of Hawkwind, Can, White Witch, Moebius & Plank, Goblin, The Sensational Alex Harvey Band, Throbbing Gristle, Captain Beefheart, etc...

These ten tracks pull directly from those first albums that he played for me in his Laurel, MD living room, when I was transformed from a normal kid into a total, slobbering vinyl addict. The last track, from Pearls Before Swine's excellent "One Nation Underground", was actually the first album he played in my presence. It was an 8-track copy, I remember that much. Egad.

And to this day, I'm still remembering LPs he pulled from those massive shelves, and hunting them down..."

Hawkwind - Master of the Universe (Mp3)
Eloy - Future City (Mp3)
Grobschnitt - Wonderful Music (Mp3)
Neu - Lila Engel (Lilac Angel) (Mp3)
Camel - Freefall (Mp3)
Soft Machine - Hope for Happiness (Mp3)
Amon Duul II - Archangels Thunderbird (Mp3)
Gong - Master Builder (Mp3)
Can - Dizzy Dizzy (Mp3)
Pearls Before Swine - Ballad to an Amber Lady (Mp3)

Got shots? Drop a note and step up with your mix...

TVD's Shuffle Bored | February 29, 2008

I'm starting to think, just like sunglasses and underwear, these iPods are disposable. This dying Nano is just dying to meet the dust heap - so your Shuffled Selections are from iTunes this morning...
Thin Lizzy - Night Life (Mp3)
Jon Auer - Angelita (Mp3)
Suede - Money (Mp3)
Roxy Music - Virginia Plain (Mp3)
Evangelicals - Skeleton Man (Mp3)

Thursday, February 28, 2008

TVD's Daily Wax | Todd Rundgren (A TVD Best-of...)

I was all ready to write about today's "singer/songwriter" Todd Rundgren and what an amazing and diverse career he's had...from solo star in the '70's to his work with Utopia and his amazing list of production credits that include The Psychedelic Furs, XTC, Meat Loaf, Badfinger and The New York Dolls (to name just a few) to fronting the reunited Cars...but heading to Todd's website, it seems he's told the entire story himself in a...uh, rather LONG Flash movie you really just can't click out of. (I tried. Several times.) So, pop some pop corn, call the kids into the room and sit back and let Todd tell you his story himself. All respects, Todd.

Todd Rundgren - I Saw The Light (Mp3)
Todd Rundgren - Can We Still Be Friends (Mp3)
Todd Rundgren - Be Nice To Me (Mp3)
Todd Rundgren - Wailing Wall (Mp3)
Todd Rundgren - Hello It's Me (Mp3)

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

TVD's Daily Wax | Grant-Lee Phillips "Mobilize"

So, I'm over at Iota a few years back waiting for Grant-Lee to hit the stage. Glance over my shoulder and there he is...amiable, personable, making small talk with folks in the crowd. "Here's my chance," I'm thinking -- I've seen this guy live like 4 or 5 times, have all of the Grant Lee Buffalo records - here it is, my opportunity to say hello. I make my way through the crowd, introduce myself, and we chat a bit, things are light and breezy. Then I ask, "Say - you think Grant Lee Buffalo will ever get back together?" You'd think a full (Mighty Joe) moon had just arisen -- the guy's demeanor does a complete 360. "Never," he growls abruptly and storms off through the crowd. (In short, don't ask that.) Regardless, five great reasons he's doing amazing things as an ahem, solo "singer/songwriter..."

Grant Lee Phillips - Beautiful Dreamers (Mp3)
Grant Lee Phillips - Lazily Drowning (Mp3)
Grant Lee Phillips - Love's A Mystery (Mp3)
Grant Lee Phillips - Mobilize (Mp3)
Grant Lee Phillips - See America (Mp3)

Monday, February 25, 2008

TVD's Daily Wax | Paul Westerberg "14 Songs"

Miles away from a 'Mats record, former Replacements frontman Paul Westerberg emerged as a solo performer with a straight down the center country-tinged rock record. And in Westerberg's hands, that ain't such a bad thing. Singer/songwriter week #2 kicks off with five from "14."

Paul Westerberg - Dice Behind Your Shades (Mp3)
Paul Westerberg - Even Here We Are (Mp3)
Paul Westerberg - First Glimmer (Mp3)
Paul Westerberg - Runaway Wind (Mp3)
Paul Westerberg - Things (Mp3)

Friday, February 22, 2008

TVD's Weekend Shots

Fairfax, Virginia's Dr. Pee steps up to the mic to offer his selections for your Weekend Shots:

"Dr. Pee would like to recommend the following power-pop postcards and rock manifestos from our youth. Quite a diverse mix here from Beatles to Foo Fighters to Van Halen to Bob Mould! Just for fun I included a nice acoustic version The Alarm covering "In a Big Country"... The Pete Townshend solo version of The Who's "However Much I Booze" is a personal favorite...Until next time, Enjoy! --Dr. Pee"

Decendents - Coolidge (Mp3)
Cheap Trick - Oh, Candy (Mp3)
Goo Goo Dolls - Another Second (Mp3)
Pete Townshend - No Way Out (However Much I Booze) (Mp3)
Foo Fighters - My Poor Brain (Mp3)
The Beatles - Got To Get You Into My Life (Mp3)
Bob Mould - Out of Your Life (Mp3)
Van Halen - Little Guitars (Mp3)
The Producers - She Sheila (Mp3)
The Alarm - In a Big Country (Mp3)

Ten songs and a dream? Drop TVD a note and you too can spring for the Shots next weekend...

TVD's Shuffle Bored | February 22, 2008

The Friday Fallout:
The White Stripes - Rag & Bone.mp3
Elvis Costello & the Attractions - High Fidelity.mp3
Josie Cotton - He Could Be The One.mp3
Soft Cell - Kitchen Sink Drama.mp3
Snowden - Good News.mp3

Thursday, February 21, 2008

TVD's Daily Wax | Neil Finn "Try Whistling This"

I don't think today's "singer/songwriter" will rise to the level of debate and discourse as yesterday's selection of Mr. Weller seems to have engendered -- Neil just seems to be the one who we can all agree upon. (Right...?) Having tied up the Enz and shuttered the House (the first time 'round) Neil emerged as a solo performer with '98's "Try Whistling This," a looser, slightly funkier release where a spirit of playful experimentalism prevails. Tracks like "Sinner" and "Twisty Bass" amid others find him incorporating discreet layers of loops and unexpected influences (house music, trance) into what remains, at heart, an essentially handmade, linear song-writing technique.

Neil Finn - Last One Standing (Mp3)
Neil Finn - Souvenir (Mp3)
Neil Finn - Try Whistling This (Mp3)
Neil Finn - Twisty Bass (Mp3)
Neil Finn - Sinner (Mp3)

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

TVD's Daily Wax | Paul Weller "Wild Wood"

Apparently he'd been getting into Neil Young, smoking joints and making pilgrimages to Nick Drake's grave. Paul Weller, Mod icon turned R&B/soul crooner emerged as the UK's preeminent "singer/songwriter" with 1992's "Wild Wood." (Who said 'writer's block?')

Paul Weller - Wild Wood (Mp3)
Paul Weller - Has My Fire Really Gone Out? (Mp3)
Paul Weller - Foot Of The Mountain (Mp3)
Paul Weller - All The Pictures On The Wall (Mp3)
Paul Weller - Hung Up (Mp3)

Washington City Paper visits TVD; Dismisses Entire Genre

Whackjobs (or wait...) actually onto something...?

The Washington City Paper stopped by yesterday morning simultaneously making mention of last Friday's power pop lineup (thanks guys!), then to completely dismiss the entire genre as a whole - saving just Big Star and 20/20 from the trash bin o' pop history. (Both of whom made our Friday Ten, by the way.) "It’s just such an overrated genre. Just go and buy some Big Star and forget the rest" Jason Cherkis opined.

Now, we know many of you zip thru TVD via Power Pop Criminals and The Not Lame Blog (among quite a few others) and the downloads were increasingly high for last Friday's Shots, so the City Paper CAN'T be on to something, or...can it be? The entire genre in utter shite shock? (Because if that's the case, I have some genres on my list to anything ending with the suffix "abilly" for example...) Ahem.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

TVD's Daily Wax | Aztec Camera "Stray"

I was surprised to see on Paul Michel's MySpace page that he considers himself to be a "singer/songwriter." (Or was that "songer singwriter"?) Anyway, it makes sense but that designation seems to be normally reserved for your James Taylors or your Cat Stevenses or even your Gordon Lightfeets who, let's face it, are the suck. So, picking up with yesterday's theme, I thought - hm, are there any "singer/songwriters" I actually DO like -- outside of Paul, of course? (And if you've haven't downloaded his tracks from yesterday by now - get on that.)

First up -- Roddy Frame of Aztec Camera. If it weren't for "Oblivious" I'd be oblivious. But happily that sucked me in and I've been along for the ride ever since. But whether he's working with a Knopfler or a Sakamoto, ostensibly it's just Roddy and his way with a melody and lyric. Oh, and what a voice, huh?

Aztec Camera - Stray (Mp3)
Aztec Camera - Over My Head (Mp3)
Aztec Camera - Notting Hill Blues (Mp3)

Live at Ronnie Scott's 6/23/91
Aztec Camera - Stray (Live) (Mp3)
Aztec Camera - Dolphins (Live) (Mp3)

Monday, February 18, 2008

TVD's Daily Wax | Paul Michel "Quiet State of Panic" (and more)

Over a pint one evening, I stuck out my hand and introduced myself:

It struck me as odd that Jon knew me and I didn't know him. I was working, and I think it always weirds me out when someone I don't know asks me, "Hey, are you Paul Michel?" Doesn't happen often, mind you. Guess that's why it's weird. But I was in my own little world in this tiny bar in DC, and Jon popped the proverbial (and kind of metaphysical) question. Too much Catholic guilt, I guess, 'cuz I felt like I had done something wrong. But he says that he's downloaded a bunch of stuff off the site and that he really enjoys the music. 'Phew, I'm not in trouble,' I think, and then in my neurotic way, I thank him and smile like an idiot. I'm still not comfortable responding to a compliment. And then we chat for a bit, and I do a bit of half-assed promotion for a show I have coming up before we exchange email addresses.

So when I sat down to write this little preamble for Jon's blog, it stuck in my head that here's this nice guy being really cool to a dude that he's never met because of an interaction he's had with this ephemeral thing called music that the unknown guy (me) recorded and released a couple of years ago. And I think that's what makes me weirded out. Its that I created this thing that got thrown into the ether, and there was a ripple somewhere. Being a control freak, and this being something I can't control, it made me nervous. Writing is such a personal thing for me. It's a huge leap to take ideas from your head, stick it on some media, and let someone you've never met judge it. Truth is, its been almost accidental the way I've released my music. The first Magic Bullet EP was a collection of a couple songs I had written in a one bedroom apartment on my computer that my roommate convinced me was good enough for other people to listen to. Magic Bullet thought so, too, and that was my first adventure into the ether. I've never really had a plan for any of this.

So I've realized that it's the act of creation that gets me going. I've played with other bands that have played in front of a ton of people -- and don't get me wrong, I've had a blast on stage playing in front of those people. And I love that people listening to music can still get them (and myself!) riled up from that pure raw emotion. But nothing in the world makes me feel more at peace than writing a line or a guitar part. I'm an introvert, and that internalizing act of producing something just seems to reflect who I am and what I like to do. So I just keep writing music -- I have backlogs of crap on a couple different hard drives -- and somehow it just keeps getting thrown out there. I think Jon's gonna put a couple songs from the first Magic Bullet LP up on this blog, but there was another EP after that, then another LP on a new label called "Quiet State of Panic" that got released last year. I got vomit of the brain, kind of. I just can't stop. Sometimes I want to, sometimes it drives me nuts, but at this point its something that I have to do. It's become a necessity.

So that's why it's still weird to me that Jon approached me. I get so caught up in the act of making music, in this tiny world that includes a basement, a computer screen, a couple of guitars and myself, that I forget that I've already made a bunch. And that people have heard it. And some of them actually liked it. Go figure...

Five great reasons why you too would have stuck out your hand and said, "Hey aren't you..."
Paul Michel - Alone All Day (Mp3)
Paul Michel - Backup Plan (Mp3)
Paul Michel - Here In My Arms (Mp3)
Paul Michel - You, My Only One (Mp3)
Paul Michel - Wait (Mp3)

Thursday, February 14, 2008

TVD's Daily Wax | KISS "Alive!"

I'm sure this pick will alienate many a TVD reader, but what better way to celebrate Valentine's Day than with one of your very first loves? Oh sure, we had our glorious honeymoon phase, leveled off a bit, then subsequently had MORE than our fair share of rough patches. The '80's were a complete mess, for example. Yet, every now and then we still get together to rekindle that old, magical flame. (Or pyro, in this instance.) So Happy Valentine's Day Gene, Paul, Peter and Ace. Did you get our flowers?

KISS - Watching You (Mp3)
KISS - 100,000 Years (Mp3)
KISS - Black Diamond (Mp3)
KISS - Rock Bottom (Mp3)
KISS - Cold Gin (Mp3)

(Oh, c'mon you sonsabitches - it's the Dolls meets Alice Cooper - what's not to like?!)

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

TVD's Daily Wax | Big Star "#1 Record"

Its STILL blows my mind up when, in conversation, a reference to Big Star arises and someone inevitably says, "Who?" (...WHO?!) Maybe it's just me or that I'm used to hearing their influences on such TVD favorites as Cheap Trick or The Posies. But really, everyone should own this record.

Yet, I have a confession: I hadn't owned or HEARD it til about 8 years ago. (I guess I just got tired of saying "Who?" when Big Star was mentioned.) I mean I KNEW who they were - Alex Chilton and all that - I just hadn't heard the record. So, playing it for the first time, there was an instant familiarity -- like putting on an old pair of jeans to find they fit perfectly. So, waste no time and grab these today. You're not getting any thinner.

Big Star - Feel (Mp3)
Big Star - The Ballad Of El Goodo (Mp3)
Big Star - Thirteen (Mp3)
Big Star - Give Me Another Chance (Mp3)
Big Star - In The Street (Mp3)

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

TVD's Daily Wax | T-Rex "Tanx"

Sure, "Electric Warrior" is fantastic. "The Slider" often better than "Warrior" which it followed. But 1973's "Tanx", T-Rex's eighth LP and follow up to "The Slider" didn't fare as well, both commercially and critically. And TVD readers - that's a damn shame and something we're going to dispel here and now. "Tanx" is hookier, catchier and yes, punkier than anything T-Rex released prior. (And that's saying something.) I'm struggling to pull JUST five from this today. So, is it just us or has that double-shot gone right to our heads this morning?

T-Rex - Mad Donna (Mp3)
T-Rex - The Street & Babe Shadow (Mp3)
T-Rex - Mister, Mister (Mp3)
T-Rex - Life Is Strange (Mp3)
T-Rex - Highway Knees (Mp3)

Monday, February 11, 2008

TVD's Daily Wax | Thin Lizzy "Thin Lizzy"

This week TVD looks back at a few LPs from the Classic Rock era which, in our humble opinion, don't get the respect they're due.

First up is the 1971 debut by that little Irish combo Thin Lizzy. Long before their patented twin-guitar-attack and comic book heroism, Lizzy was a tight three piece and far more introspective and reflective than their later work would have you think. Plus, they rocked (albeit with just one guitarist.)

Thin Lizzy - Honesty Is No Excuse (Mp3)
Thin Lizzy - Clifton Grange Hotel (Mp3)
Thin Lizzy - Dublin (Mp3)
Thin Lizzy - Remembering p.2 (New Day) (Mp3)
Thin Lizzy - Things Ain't Working Out Down at the Farm (Mp3)

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Old Vinyl's Top of the Pops

"The best advice I can give for anyone interested in investing in vinyl is to befriend the dealer at your local second-hand record store."

Vintage records are shooting up the investment charts – if you know which ones to buy.
Via The Telegraph

Vinyl can provide record returns for investors willing to take a musical spin with their money. The Holy Grail is That'll be the Day, a seven-inch single recorded exactly 50 years ago by the Quarrymen – the group that later became the Beatles. On paper it is worth £100,000, but experts believe it might fetch more than double this at auction, if the only known disc could be wrestled from its owner, Sir Paul McCartney. "The Beatles are the giants for collectors as they hold universal appeal, but there are still plenty more which can prove to be great investments," says Stephen Maycock, a rock and roll memorabilia consultant for Bonhams, the auction house.

Other British blue-chip bands that command thousands of pounds for rare and earliest pressings include the Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, The Who and The Smiths. David Bowie and Marc Bolan also have a huge fan base. Across the water, Elvis is among the most sought-after rock and roll innovators. As a 19-year-old truck driver he walked into Sun studio and sang That's All Right in 1954. The single shook up rock and roll forever and an early pressing with a £3,500 book price can now hit five figures at auction.
Read the full article here.

Friday, February 8, 2008

TVD's Weekend Shots | Punky One Drop Edition

The one drop drum pattern is the backbone of the reggae rhythm. The backbeat is characterized by the dominant snare drum stroke and bass drum kick both sounding on the third beat of every measure in 4/4 time, while beat one is left empty. Said beat is also the convenient theme for your punky-irie Weekend Shots.

Bob Marley & The Wailers - Punky Reggae Party (Mp3)
Stiff Little Fingers - Doesn't Make It Alright (Mp3)
The Clash - Armagideon Time (Mp3)
The Members - Offshore Banking Business (Mp3)
Madness - The Prince (Mp3)
The Slits - New Town (Mp3)
Joe Jackson Band - In Every Dream Home (A Nightmare) (Mp3)
The Police - The Bed's Too Big Without You (Mp3)
Scritti Politti - Flesh & Blood (Mp3)
Bad Brains - Peace Be Unto Thee (Mp3)

TVD Welcomes Guest DJs for the Weekend Shots! Have ten tracks and a theme? Step right up...

TVD's Shuffle Bored | February 8, 2008

The Friday Five - at random.
The Police - When The World Is Running Down, You Make The Best Of What's Still Around (Mp3)
Joe Jackson - Biology (Mp3)
Felt - I Didn't Mean To Hurt You (Mp3)
The Chameleons - In Shreds (Mp3)
The Longpigs - She Said (Mp3)

On a side note, 'Shuffle Bored' is implicitly an homage to the other fine bloggers out there, their tireless work, and whose efforts end up in rotation on all of our playlists and iPods. Today in particular, TVD tips its hat to Spinster's Rock for the wonderful unearthing of this early Chameleons single. Cheers!

Thursday, February 7, 2008

TVD's Daily Wax | "Valley Girl" Soundtrack

That's right - not expecting to exceed any bandwidth today, yet when "Million Miles Away" gets played for the zillionth time - I'm STILL nodding my head right along.

Friday night I'd just got back/I had my eyes shut/Was dreaming about the past/I thought about you while the radio played/I should have got moving/For some reason I stayed/I started drifting to a different place/I realized I was falling off the face of your world/And there was nothing left to bring me back/I'm a million miles away/A million miles away/A million miles away/And there's nothing left to bring me back today/I took a ride, I went downtown/Streets were empty/There was no one around/All the faces that we used to know/Gone from the places that we used to go/I'm at the wrong end of the looking glass/Trying to hold on to the hands of the past and you/And there's nothing left to bring me back/I'm a million miles away/A million miles away/A million miles away/And there's nothing left to bring me back today......

The Plimsouls - A Million Miles Away.mp3
Sparks - Angst In My Pants.mp3
Payolas - Eyes Of A Stranger.mp3
Modern English - I Melt With You.mp3
Psychedelic Furs - Love My Way.mp3

Wednesday, February 6, 2008


Tinkering with the layout again.

TVD's Daily Wax | "First Love, Last Rites" Soundtrack

Washington DC's own Shudder To Think return with another fine soundtrack with 1997's "First Love, Last Rites", the movie adaptation of a collection of short stories by Ian McEwan.

"There's a diner on Second Avenue that serves the best soup in New York City. The radio is always tuned to an oldies station that does not exist outside of its kitchen. Every song is perfect, utterly transporting; simultaneously fresh and timeless, fleeting yet somehow permanent. The feeling is not unlike self-discovery, where what is revealed is something you feel you've known all along, a million-dollar word forever on the tip of your tongue. It is the feeling of springtime, and of limitless possibility; of flesh, and of love. That is the feeling we wanted to evoke with this recording. It embodies the frozen-in-(summer)time love story of Sissel and Joey, the film's two main characters. The songs comprise Sissel's singles collection, which she plays throughout the movie on her plastic turntable, in the couple's stilted, one-room house on the bayou. They are seventeen, and this is their music. It is also our music, to which some friends lent their voices, and so it is their music as well. Hopefully it'll be yours soon, too."

Shudder To Think featuring Jeff Buckley - I Want Someone Badly (Mp3)
Shudder To Think featuring Liz Phair - Erecting A Movie Star (Mp3)
Shudder To Think featuring Robin Zander - Automatic Soup (Mp3)
Shudder To Think featuring John Doe - Speed Of Love (Mp3)
Shudder To Think featuring Matt Johnson - Jelly On The Table (Mp3)

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

TVD: Maybe it's just us...

...but don't these USB turntables give you the impression that you just plug into your USB port and you're off and listening to your vinyl? No, really -- was it just us? No one ELSE thought the USB friendly ION (or another USB model) would be that user-friendly -- like baby's first turntable?

Here's a handy tip to burnish that learning curve -- it ain't so. The software is WED to the output as a whole. It's not like plugging in your flash drive and boom - there it is on your desktop and you're rolling.

Like TVD thought.

So, time was spent deep in the nooks and crannies of the Mac's preferences. Needle down, hearing stuff, but it's not through the speakers. It's all done through the software program, and that'd be Audacity for ION owners. But ONLY after configuring the Preferences just right. Click to "play track while recording" (yes, we're idiots) and voila! You don't even need to be in archiving mode just to listen, if that's what you're after.

So, there. A whole evening back to you that we lost. But there ARE rewards to come...

TVD's Daily Wax | "Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory" Soundtrack

Don't laugh. I'm not joking...

"Willy Wonka" Soundtrack - Pure Imagination (Mp3)
"Willy Wonka" Soundtrack - (I've Got A) Golden Ticket (Mp3)
"Willy Wonka" Soundtrack - Oompa Loompa (Mp3)
"Willy Wonka" Soundtrack - Everlasting Gobstoppers/Oompa Loompa (Mp3)
"Willy Wonka" Soundtrack - I Want It Now/Oompa Loompa (Mp3)