Music Notes July 2009

July 31, 2009 at 11:36 am (Uncategorized)

 July’s music round -up.

1. The 13th Floor Elevators

I think I might be developing a bit of an obsession with the Elevators. I’m not quite ready to spring for Sign of the 3 Eyed Men, the definitive, yet prohibitively expensive box set, but there are clear signs of obsession. I just got   Eye  Mind, the newish account by Paul Drummond, and my Roky Erickson pyramid-eye t-shirt is in the mail.  For those of you just thinking about dipping your toe into the water, a  good place to start is the debut  album, The Psychedelic Sounds of the 13th Floor Elevators. In addition to the original album remastered, there are ten bonus live tracks, including two by Roky Erikson’s previous band the Spades.   

2. Jon Savage

Jon Savage started writing about music in the 1970s. He published his own zine London’s Outrage, and wrote what is for many, the definitive book on punk, England’s Dreaming. He’s also the author of Teenage: The Creation of Youth Culture and  Time Travel, a collection of essays.  Savage also writes for Mojo and other periodicals. His site contains some of the above. Also of interest is  an interview at the 3AM site. 

3. Dead Weather

I resisted buying this for a while, but the reviews were just too strong to avoid altogether. It’s a lot like you’d expect if you put together the White Stripes, the Kills, the Raconteurs and the Queens of the Stone Age. Bluesy, but in a garage not the Delta. It grows stronger with repeated listening.

4. Rachid Taha – Rock el Casbah

On the soundtrack to the Joe Strummer movie, The Future is Unwritten, there’s a fantastic cover of the Clash’s Rock the Casbahby Rachid Taha. Sung in Arabic, it makes perfect sense. Imagine my delight in coming across this greatest hits package from 2007. Rachid Taha is from Algeria, and combines the traditional music from North Africa with western rock. It’s tremendous. New album out in October.

5. Liz Phair – Exile in Guyville

 Pulled this off the shelf the other day. It’s simply an astonishing debut.

6. Galaxie 500

 Dean Wareham’s first band. Low-fi indie dahlings have a new store.  Free MP3 of Fourth of July.

7. Elijah Wald – Escaping the Delta

Actually, I was looking for Wald’s most recent book, How the Beatles destroyed Rock n Roll. How can you resist a title like that? However, the good people at the Toronto Public Library also had this one. So far, it’s quite interesting. What is the blues? How did it develop? The opening chapters touch upon a topic, I wrote about the other week, copy right. Also check out the comment from a local Toronto musician.  Can’t wait for the Beatles book.

8. Television – The Blow Up

A rough sounding live recording of Television on their final tour. But who cares about the sound?  Songs from  Marque Moon and Adventure. Covers of  Dylan, the Stones and the 13th Floor elevators. Essential.

9. Family Playlist

Well, it seems if you want to be a star with Disney, you need to be able to sing. Let’s leave aside the Spearses, the Timberlakes and the Aguileras, (hey, maybe Keri Russell can’t sing?) . Bought the Family Playlist CD for the kids – full of Disney’s teen stars: Miley Cyrus, Demi Lavado, Emily Osmont, Jonas. Annoying as hell,but catchy and the kids love it.

10. The Decemberists / Heartless Bastards

Looking forward to this one very much, although not withapprehension. Let’s start with that. The show is at the Government, which used to be known as the Warehouse. I was at the very first show there: Fugazi with Shudder to Think. The sound was without a doubt, the worst I’ve every heard. So we’ll see. The latest recordsby both of these bands are very fine indeed, but  I’m wondering how it will translate. Review Tuesday.

Still, leaving that aside

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