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Experimental « Cool Album of the Day

Category: Experimental

Shadowfax “Watercourse Way”

Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#955 in the Series) is Shadowfax, Watercourse Way When you look at a listing of the best bands Chicagoland has produced it better have Shadowfax included, if it doesn’t find a new list. Are you familiar with Shadowfax? If not, let me go back a ways. The origins of this eventual Grammy-winning band begin in the early 70s in south-suburban Crete, Illinois. That’s where the band lived in a farmhouse popularly known as “The Triple B Ranch.” It was there that these five young men crafted a sound that really could not be pigeonholed. It was jazz, it was rock, it was spacey. It was acoustic, it was plugged in. It was good....

Bill Nelson “The Love That Whirls (Diary of a Thinking Heart)

Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#475 in the Series) is Bill Nelson, The Love That Whirls (Diary of a Thinking Heart) Who is Bill Nelson you ask?  Well, did you read our recent Be-Bop Deluxe feature written by one of our contributors Jim McCabe?  Bill Nelson was the leader/guitarist/front man for them. That piece triggered much discussion about Bill on the site and facebook.  Many people were not aware of the long and prosperous solo career that Bill has had.  So I’ve decided to come right back with one of his best solo efforts, The Love That Whirls (Diary of a Thinking Heart.) Be-Bop Deluxe pretty much called it a day back in 1978 with the release Drastic...

Guitar Legend Steve Hillage To Release New ROVO And System 7 Rock-orientated Album ‘Phoenix Rising’

London, UK – Much to the excitement of music fans worldwide, guitar legend Steve Hillage is releasing a new album in the US with Japanese progressive rock/jam band ROVO on October 8, 2013 on Cleopatra Records. Steve Hillage is widely considered a guitar innovator, and is associated with the Canterbury scene, working in experimental domains since the late 1960s. Besides his critically acclaimed solo recordings, Steve has been a member of the ensembles Khan and System 7. But, he first came to prominence as a member of the multi-national rock band Gong, and appearing on successful albums such as ‘Angels Egg’, ‘You’ and his final album with the band ‘Shamal’. Steve recorded his first solo album in 1975 entitled...

Revisiting Laurie Anderson’s 09/11/01 Chicago Concert

Laurie Anderson had a concert scheduled for September 11th, 2001. While many events were cancelled that evening Laurie decided to go on with her show. Today, Chicago Tribune Music Critic Greg Kot takes a look at his review of that moving performance.  The following words are his beginning with his new introduction and then his piece from twelve years ago. ——————————————————————————————————————————– On the night of Sept. 11, 2001, Laurie Anderson decided to go ahead with her scheduled performance at Park West, even though her city had been devastated earlier that day. Here’s my Tribune review of that performance. It was one of those moments “when everything changes,” Laurie Anderson sang, in a voice that sounded like she was narrating...

Robert Fripp ‘God Save the Queen/Under Heavy Manners’

  Song Of The Day by Eric Berman – “Under Heavy Manners” by Robert Fripp with David Byrne After the demise of King Crimson in 1974, Robert Fripp spent several years laying low before entering a period of high activity from 1977-1980, resulting in some of his most interesting collaborations. Starting in 1977, Fripp joined Brian Eno in Germany to add guitar parts to David Bowie’s “Heroes.”  This was followed by Fripp’s production of albums for Daryl Hall (Sacred Songs), Peter Gabriel (his second album with the “Scratch” cover) and the eponymously titled album by The Roches, plus sessions with an amalgam of like-minded artists including Peter Hammill (of Van Der Graaf Generator), Brian Eno, Blondie (on Parallel Lines),...

Brian Eno / Harold Budd “Ambient 2: The Plateaux Of Mirror”

  Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#631 in the Series) is Harold  Budd / Brian  Eno, Ambient  2 :The Plateaux  Of Mirror It was a beautiful day today, sunny in the morning, and you could easily have been fooled into thinking spring was arriving early. There’s a row of old-fashioned houses that I can see from a window at work and all morning long, as the slow rising sun crept up, the houses were changing colour, pink, orange, red. It was a lovely sight and it brought this album to my mind,  it’s an old favourite which I hadn’t played in such a long time. Up until 7 years ago I worked in a paper mill and worked...

NEU! “NEU! ’75”

  Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#559 in the Series) is NEU!, NEU! ’75. While not a pro at reviewing albums, I fully understand that you are supposed to wait until the end of an article to pass final judgment on a record. In the case of NEU! ’75, I cannot. This is an all-time masterpiece. NEU! was formed in 1971 in Dusseldorf, Germany. Drummer Klaus Dinger and guitarist Michael Rother had just left an early version of Kraftwerk. Rother and Dinger did not want care for the synthesizer heavy direction that Kraftewerk were headed in and wanted to go in a more guitar oriented vein. NEU! was born. NUE! ’75 is the duo’s third release and bore...

Frank Zappa “Sheik Yerbouti”

    Today’s Cool Album of the Day(#539 in the Series) is Frank Zappa’s Sheik Yerbouti. (Zappa Records) If you ask Frank Zappa fans which album of his is there favorite an I’ll guarantee, Sheik Yerbouti will get some votes. No It probably will not win, it might, but it will definitely be in the team picture. It’s a double album. (Why Not, Zappa and the Mothers of Invention’s Freak Out! Was the first double album in Rock and Roll History)  Some songs are length, extended solo guitar pieces. Some songs are tight, shorter radio friendly hits. Well, for progressive stations that don’t mind a little twisted lyric here and there. What are we referring to there?  How ‘bout...

Cluster “Cluster ’71”

Posted 02 Oct 2011 in 70s, Experimental, Jim McCabe

Today’s Cool Album of the Day (# 512 in the Series) is Cluster, Cluster ’71. This will be the most vague and confusing review that I have written for Cool Album of the Day. It may be the most vague and confusing review ever written on this site. I am completely OK with that. Why? Cluster ’71 is completely different to me every time I listen to it. It’s loud. It’s serene. It’s scary. It makes perfect sense. It’s background noise. It’s the greatest album ever made. One thing is certain, though. It will probably drive people away as it draws me closer. Cluster is a German avant garde collective that was formed in Berlin in 1970. With the...

Be-Bop Deluxe “Sunburst Finish”

Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#454 in the Series) is Be-Bop Deluxe, Sunburst Finish. Create a list of 1970’s guitar heroes. Hendrix, Clapton, Richards, Schenker, Gallagher, Ronson, Jones, etc… Be-Bop Deluxe’s Bill Nelson wouldn’t get much mention. He should. Be-Bop Deluxe was a band formed in England in 1972. Classification of Be-Bop is a difficult proposition. In 1972 Deep Purple, Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, and the Rolling Stones dominated much of the rock world. Perhaps the most logical comparison may be that Be-Bop Deluxe was a poppier version of Roxy Music. Nelson was definitely the straw that stirred the Be-Bop drink. While each member of the band contributes mightily to the sound, every song builds to a burst...

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