Breezes of the Week #1

BREEZES OF THE WEEK is the wrap-up post wherein I discuss my favorite music related items of the past week. Enjoy!

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Built to Spill’s latest, THERE IS NO ENEMY, is probably their most vital and consistent album since PERFECT FROM NOW ON.  I don’t like to cast judgments on records as soon as they are released, or even after a couple of listens, but I am very stoked about the direction BTS takes here. Which is to say that they haven’t changed a thing!

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NEW RADIOHEAD LP IN 2010:

Ed O’Brien told NME that with sessions planned this winter the band would “definitely” be releasing a full album physically next year. “We were misquoted,” claimed O’Brien of Yorke’s comments, loudly adding, “WE WILL BE MAKING AN ALBUM!”
(via ateaseweb.com)

This is great news. I really believe Radiohead is at their most vital right now, and let’s face it, the album format is integral to the DNA of pop music.  Individual tracks are like short stories and poems, great in one sitting, but the LP is the novel, the grandest statement of all. Radiohead is AOR, no matter how much they’d like to be different.

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TRAVIS GETS THEIR DUE:

I salute the music blog Aquarium Drunkard for naming Travis’ The Man Who as one of their favorite albums of the decade. Travis aren’t exactly the toast of indie-dom, but the lush melodies of their Nigel G.-produced second album had most of us thinking back in 2000 that they would be to this decade what Coldplay ended up being. True, they haven’t really made anything so great since, but for one shining moment they had a whole lot of folks’ heads spinning. THE MAN WHO is an undeniable classic.

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NORAH’S SOUNDING GOOD:

Go here to stream a fresh track from Norah Jones’ upcoming LP THE FALL. Nothing TOO revolutionary, but she’s definitely kicking up the groove factor and trying to incorporate heavier rhythms. All good things, since her last outing, NOT TOO LATE, was kind of a clunker. Looking forward to THE FALL. (heads-up via Stereogum)

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JASON NOBLE’S ILLNESS

When I was about about 15 years old, I heard Rodan’s RUSTY for the first time. All I can really say is that RUSTY shattered my previous conceptions of what music could be. That album was in large part the work of Louisville’s own Jason Noble, who went on to record countless other works (see Shipping News, Rachel’s, Per Mission) that have been a huge part of the last fifteen years of my life. It’s safe to say that Jason is one of my musical heroes, and a real inspiration to me. My prayers are with him as he battles cancer. God grant you peace and serenity in the face of it all sir, and may you continue to inspire us for decades to come.

As a glimpse of his genius, here’s the beautiful “Last Things Last” from the Rachel’s masterpiece SYSTEMS/LAYERS:

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Did I mention Rachel’s? While surfing for that video of “Last Things Last”, I also found this truly amazing guitar-based cover of the glorious “Water from the Same Source.” Wow:

Anyone know how to rip this to mp3?

Evergreen: Wholeness of the Soul (part 2)

wholenessEvergreen
Wholeness of the Soul; 2009
Noise Pollution Records

continued from part one

The Louisville all-ages scene of the early 1990’s was a mish-mash of influences. You had bands like Kinghorse melding Black Sabbath metal with Misfits punk, bands like Endpoint proclaiming the conscientious hardcore ethos of the DC sound, and bands like Rodan building upon the classical dynamics of local heroes Slint. There was also a handful of other bands that could easily sell out a venue in Louisville anytime, anywhere, such as Crain, Erchint, or Bush League. All of these bands were great in their own right, and some, like Crain, have received a strong reissue treatment elsewhere. However, this collection of Evergreen’s long out of print Self Destruct recordings finally brings to digital format one of Louisville’s greatest and most original punk acts.

Noise Pollution’s anthology rightly puts the band’s official releases ahead of previously unreleased demo and live recordings, but to best understand how the band progressed in just a few years, it’s interesting to begin at track 14 and listen through to the end. Tracks 14 thru 17 are 4-track demo recordings from 1991. Recorded when the band was called Cinderblock (but composed of the same members), these tracks show a band heavily influenced by contemporary local heroes like the afore-mentioned Kinghorse and Bush League. The spidery guitar breakdown in the middle of “Psyche Scream Closet” bears a strong resemblance to the proggish instrumentalism of bands like Rodan and Crain. Nevertheless, the hardcore here is sludgy, brutal, and nasty. Between the demos and the live recordings, we get some indication of where Evergreen began, making tracks 1 thru 13 all the more astounding.

completed tomorrow…

The Louisville all-ages scene of the early 1990’s was inspired by a mish-mash of influences. You had bands like Kinghorse melding Black Sabbath metal with Misfits punk, bands like Endpoint proclaiming the conscientious hardcore ethos of the DC sound, and bands like Rodan building upon the classical dynamics of local heroes Slint. There was also a handful of other bands that could easily sell out a venue in Louisville anytime, anywhere, such as Crain, Erchint, or Bush League. All of these bands were great in their own right, and some, like Crain, have received a strong reissue treatment elsewhere. However, the reissue of Evergreen’s long out of print Self Destruct recordings finally brings to digital format one of Louisville’s greatest and most original punk acts.
Noise Pollution’s anthology rightly puts the band’s official releases ahead of previously unreleased demo and live recordings, but to best understand how the band progressed in just a few years, it’s interesting to begin at track 14 and listen through to the end before beginning from track 1. Tracks 14 thru 17 are 4-track demo recordings from 1991. Recorded when the band was called Cinderblock (but composed of the same members), these tracks show a band heavily influenced by contemporary local heroes like the afore-mentioned Kinghorse and Bush League. The spidery guitar breakdown in the middle of “Psyche Scream Closet” bears a strong resemblance to the proggish instrumentalism of bands like Rodan and Crain. Nevertheless, the hardcore here is sludgy, brutal, and nasty. Between the demos and the live recordings, we get some indication of where Evergreen began, making tracks 1 thru 13 all the more astounding.
completed tomorr