All posts by Todd Totale

Christian Mistress – Possession

Christian Mistress – Possession (Relapse) If memory serves, Girlschool was the only band of The New Wave of British Heavy Metal that featured women in the line-up. I bring this up because you cannot get away from the fact that Olympia, Washington’s Christian Mistress conjures up the exact kind of feel that is reserved for … Continue reading Christian Mistress – Possession

Testament – Dark Roots Of Earth

Testament – Dark Roots Of Earth (Nuclear Blast) To be honest, I would rather see Testament included in the “Big 4” line-up than Anthrax. The lineage is there and, most importantly, the band has parlayed its third decade into an example that even headliners Metallica should have considered well before the submission that was Death … Continue reading Testament – Dark Roots Of Earth

Ethan Daniel Davidson – Silvertooth

Ethan Daniel Davidson – Silvertooth (Seedsman Company) If what you read on the internets is true, then we’re raising our musically-inclined youth on a culture of immediate gratification without a hint of what it really takes to barely make a dent in today’s music industry. A quick litmus test may be to introduce every sing-for-your-supper … Continue reading Ethan Daniel Davidson – Silvertooth

The Chuck Dukowski Sextet – Haunted; OFF! – Off!

The Chuck Dukowski Sextet – Haunted (Org Music) OFF! – Off! (Vice) The importance of L.A.’s punk pioneers Black Flag cannot be understated. Even if history only confirms one album, Damaged, as the band’s crowning achievement, you have to consider the band beyond anything committed to magnetic tape. From their grueling tour schedule, to the … Continue reading The Chuck Dukowski Sextet – Haunted; OFF! – Off!

Beachwood Sparks – The Tarnished Gold

Beachwood Sparks – The Tarnished Gold (Sub Pop) After a decade long hiatus between studio albums, Beachwood Sparks returns with The Tarnished Gold, their latest attempt at channeling the ghosts of Laurel Canyon. Their country rock is tightly packaged through campfire picked guitars and a slue of pedal steels, just the way it should be. … Continue reading Beachwood Sparks – The Tarnished Gold

Lost Classic: The Lovin’ Spoonful – Hums Of The Lovin’ Spoonful

The Lovin’ Spoonful – Hums Of The Lovin’ Spoonful Kama Sutra) The Lovin’ Spoonful’s third record was one of those albums that suddenly found its way into my childhood collection, presumably a hand-me-down offering from my father when he figured out that the more time I spent dwelling in front of a record player was … Continue reading Lost Classic: The Lovin’ Spoonful – Hums Of The Lovin’ Spoonful

Rush – Clockwork Angels

Rush – Clockwork Angels (Anthem) Prior to the release of Rush’s twentieth album, Clockwork Angels, the band had an opportunity to visit with Pete Townshend after receiving the Governor-General Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Performing Arts. The formal gathering provided the Canadian trio with some face time with one of their acknowledged heroes after … Continue reading Rush – Clockwork Angels

Accept – Stalingrad

Accept – Stalingrad (Nuclear Blast) To admit to liking the German heavy metal band Accept requires an understanding that you’ll always end up defending the ridiculous video for the band’s biggest stateside song, 1983’s “Balls To The Wall.” If the image of a short, chubby vocalist with short-cropped blonde hair and a penchant for camouflage … Continue reading Accept – Stalingrad

Spiritualized – Sweet Heart Sweet Light

Spiritualized – Sweet Heart Sweet Light (Fat Possum) Within the first measures of Spiritualized’s eighth album, head Spaceman Jason Pierce continues his journey away from the minimalist leanings that he’s examined for the last pair of records, and back to the orchestrated grandeur of his revered back catalog. While all of that may sound like … Continue reading Spiritualized – Sweet Heart Sweet Light

Japandroids – Celebration Rock

Japandroids – Celebration Rock (Polyvinyl) The most frustrating thing about Japandroids is that there is barely a hint of complexity, and within the first minute or so of any random song of theirs–be it from Post Nothing or their new sophomore effort Celebration Rock–you’ll have these guys completely figured out. Distorted guitars, driving drums, anthemic … Continue reading Japandroids – Celebration Rock