Category: Albums of 2008

Todd Rundgren ‘Arena’

  Song Of The Day by Eric Berman – “Bardo” by Todd Rundgren I’m kind of stuck in the middle of a Todd Rundgren jag at the moment. And if you’re a Todd fan, there are many reasons to be excited. With the recent releases of not one, but two new live recordings of the classic albums Todd (originally released in 1974)and Healing (1980) both from his recent tour, plus the belated appearance of the 1976 Utopia album Disco Jets, I guess I just can’t seem to get enough of that Todd stuff. It’s led me to revisit some albums from his catalog that I haven’t heard in a while. Once such album is his 2008 album, Arena, which,...

William Parker ‘Petit Oiseau’

  Song Of The Day by Eric Berman – “Talaps Theme” by William Parker Difficult listening doesn’t have to be difficult. It’s all about perception, and with the ability to just let it all wash over you with an open mind, difficult listening can be real easy. Case in point is bassist William Parker’s 2008 free jazz album Petit Oiseau. Parker has one of the best working bands in Jazz today. Along with longtime percussionist Hamid Drake, Parker acts as the catalyst of The William Parker Quartet, driving the proceedings with his percussive approach to the double bass and sustaining the tension between saxophonist Rob Brown’s sharp tones and trumpeter Lewis Barnes’ muted beauty. Even when the band is...

Mudcrutch "Mudcrutch"

  Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#755 in the series) is the debut self-titled album by Mudcrutch. I’ll be the first to admit, I’ve never been the biggest Tom Petty fan.  Don’t get me wrong, I think he’s OK, I do like him. I’ve seen him and really enjoyed the show. (Althought I liked the opening band the del Fuegos better)  I’ve liked some of this work but I think the best thing he ever did was his original single “American Girl” and that was 1976. But…. however, I really liked his Mudcrutch album! Here’s what Mudcrutch was all about. They were Petty’s first band formed in 1970.  The band did include a number of future Heartbreakers. They...

The Baseball Project “Volume 1: Frozen Ropes and Dying Quails”

  Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#675 in the Series) is The Baseball Project, Volume 1: Frozen Ropes and Dying Quails Somewhere, probably with one heck of a backing band, Steve Goodman is performing his annual rite of spring, “A Dying Cub Fan’s Last Request” for “The Man in Charge” in his annual attempt to bring positive Mojo to the Chicago Cubs and at long last bring a championship to one of the most storied franchises in all of baseball.  It is in this reverential spirit that the collective group of artists known as The Baseball Project was formed and released the album Vol. 1: Frozen Ropes and Dying Quails. The Baseball Project is a concept group united...

The Felice Brothers “The Felice Brothers”

  Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#610 in the Series) is The Felice Brothers – “The Felice Brothers” The first time I saw a photo of The Felice Brothers (before I’d even heard them) they looked and dressed almost exactly like The Band famously did on the cover of their classic second album. Straight away I knew…..this lot are gonna be good! And I was right. It wasn’t until about 2 weeks later, when the album came out, that I finally got to hear them and they certainly didn’t let me down. Mining a seam of that “old, weird” American music which Bob Dylan and The Band explored on The Basement Tapes, they also threw in a distinct...

The Low Anthem “Oh My God, Charlie Darwin”

      Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#552 in the Series) is The Low Anthem, Oh My God, Charlie Darwin (Nonesuch (US), Bella Union(UK)) For this , their 3rd album (but first to be widely available), The Low Anthem really surpassed themselves, conjuring up a magical album, full of ghostly otherworldly ambience, with the odd wonderfully raucous detour thrown in for good measure! The sleeve states that it was “recorded in the solace of a Block Island winter” and that’s entirely fitting, there’s a distinct chilly, spectral feel to the full thing. I suppose it’s a folk album really, just not the kind you’ll have heard before. Probably. They’ve taken some well-worn ingredients, given them a good...

Jim Jones Revue “Jim Jones Revue”

Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#433 in the series Series) is the Jim Jones Revue. Imagine just for a minute. You are a mad scientist in the rock and roll laboratory. You fuse the DNA of Jerry Lee Lewis , Little Richard, and the New York Dolls. What do you get? London’s Jim Jones Revue. Jim Jones (ex-Thee Hypnotics) and his band push the term rhythm and blues to its furthest limits. While Jones is the undeniable star of the show, the band fights Jones for every bit of the spotlight. The album is produced by Jones which produces shocking results. This record is very loud. Undoubtedly, the needles on the sound board were well into the red...