Video: The Dandy Warhols – “Thick Girls Knock Me Out (Richard Starkey)”
Gotta love the Dandies. It’s been twenty years since they released The Dandy Warhols Come Down on Capitol Records, and ten years since Capitol dumped them, and they’re still at it. Still pounding away at chuggy, psychedelic garage rock.
This one’s pretty fun, shouting out Paul McCartney’s Kisses On the Bottom and “It Don’t Come Easy” by “that other Beatle.” LOL.
Hook, hooky hook, mama. Look at you slammin’. Indeed. Look at you!
Hey we’ve got a new single called “Thick Girls Knock Me Out (Richard Starkey)” – if you ask my opinion you should plunk down the $1.29 to buy it on iTunes, maybe we can get a pot of coffee outta the deal.
“Thick Girls” is also available on all the premium streaming services (Spotify, Google Play, Amazon, Apple Music, etc), just in case you need it even cheaper than $1.29. Nevertheless play it a lot, put it on repeat, those .004 cents checks really add up
Continue reading New Dandy Warhols video: Thick Girls Knock Me Out
Video: Ice Cube – “Who’s the Mack?”
I didn’t even realize Ice Cube made a video for this song from Amerikkka’s Most Wanted until I was googling around, looking for something or other and stumbled across it on YouTube. Priority Records released a promotional 12″ in 1990, but it didn’t chart.
The best part about this video–other than Cube looking like an adorable little kid–is the ending where after spending the whole song rapping about different types of con artists in his own community, he visually opens up the definition to include White America. There’s “President Mack” (sitting POTUS George H. W. Bush), “Busted Mack” (televangelist Jim Bakker who had recently been found guilty on 24 counts of fraud and conspiracy), and best of all, “Broke Mack” (Donald Trump).
In June 1990, the Wall Street Journal reported the news of Trump’s impending financial distaster. So I’m assuming this video was made shortly after that. People magazine even had a cover story in July titled “Poor Donald!” But nobody summed it up better than Ice Cube: Broke Mack. You knew the game and you still ended up on your back.
Continue reading Broke Mack: Have you ever been in a hot tub?
Video: Conor Oberst – “Till St. Dymphna Kicks Us Out”
From Salutations, due March 17 on Nonesuch.
So apparently Oberst’s last album, Ruminations, was just a collection of demos for this new album.
According to Nonesuch:
When Oberst wrote and recorded the songs on Ruminations, entirely solo—with just voice, piano, guitar and harmonica—he intended to ultimately record them with a full band. In the midst of putting together that band, the passionate responses Oberst was getting to those first solo recordings, from friends and colleagues, encouraged him to release the songs as-is, in their original sparse form, as his seventh solo album: Ruminations, which was released in October 2016. Meanwhile, Oberst simultaneously moved ahead with his plans to record with the band. Salutations includes full-band versions of the ten songs from Ruminations, plus seven additional songs.
So that’s kinda weird, right? Feels like a rip-off. Like maybe they should’ve just held on to the ten demos on Ruminations and included them as a bonus disc with Salutations. Who does Oberst think he is, Ryan Adams?
Then again, who cares anyway since nobody buys music anymore, and we can just stream them together or separately or not at all. The concept of the “album” as a cohesive piece of work is probably antiquated and anachronistic (and rockist!) at this point. Or maybe not. The only scarcity left in the music marketplace is people’s attention, and I’d rather not spend mine on demo collections when your ultimate intention is to put out a full-band album. But that’s just me.
Continue reading New Conor Oberst video: Till St. Dymphna Kicks Us Out
Video: Spoon – “Can I Sit Next To You”
From Hot Thoughts, due March 17 on Matador.
Like a lot of Spoon songs “Can I Sit Next To You” takes a few spins to reveal its mysteries. Simple and supple, groovy and woozy, each sound placed deliberately in the mix, this becomes the soundtrack to walking through crowded streets on a sunny day. “Gonna get kicks every night / no one’s holding me back / no one’s changing my mind.” Let’s go.
Continue reading New Spoon video: Can I Sit Next To You
Video: MC5 – Beat Club Recording Sessions: Bremen, Germany 1972
This footage is amazing. It’s from the weird time right after they had kicked out original bassist Michael Davis. They were in Europe promoting their third and final (and best) album, High Times, although they don’t play anything from that record in this clip, filmed for the German television show Beat-Club. They had been dumped by their record label, and their former manager John Sinclair was accusing them of being greedy junky sellouts. Things were not looking good for the Five. And yet…
Watch this footage!
Everything great about rock and roll is here on display. Sonic Smith’s furry hat, Machine Gun Thompson’s Norton Motorcycles t-shirt, Wayne Kramer’s dehydrated pastiness…I mean, come on! Even fill-in bassist Steve (“Steev”) Moorhouse looks cool. But nobody can get anywhere close to the glory of Rob Tyner with his fantastically crazy teeth, magnificent afro, and face dripping with sweat even before he counts in the band with his famous “Kick out the jams, motherfuckers!”
This nine-minute extended freakout version of their greatest hit (peaked at #82 in 1969) goes off into jazzy weirdness before coming back around again with Kramer and Smith intertwining guitar leads, getting as funkadelic in their own way as Eddie Hazel and Garry Shider.
They play five songs in total over two separate sessions (clearly differentiated by the new shirts in “Ramblin’ Rose” and “Black To Comm”). The total running time is under 30 minutes and although it would great to have even more, this is really enough to prove that the MC5 is still grossly underrated despite all the praise they get from people like us.
Continue reading Watch the MC5 kick out the jams in Germany in 1972
Video: Dawes – “Roll With The Punches”
Dawes is back with a new video from their 2016 album We’re All Gonna Die. This one co-stars Mandy Moore who looks sad and pretty as ever.
I’m still not 100% sold on the slick direction of their last couple of albums. It’s all a little too 80s Don Henley…or something. But still, this band has released one of my favorite songs of the millennium (2009’s “When My Times Comes”) and one of my favorite albums of the decade (2011’s Nothing Is Wrong), so I’m willing to give them the benefit of the doubt.
And they must be reading my mail, because they just released a streaming-only live album called We’re All Gonna Live. “The album includes selections recorded over the first four shows of the An Evening With Dawes tour, and was mixed, mastered and released within 15 days.” No time for slickness there, pally. Right on.
Video: Father John Misty – “Pure Comedy”
Another feel good party anthem from everybody’s favorite optimist, FJM. No official info yet on whether this is from his third album or just another one-off single he’s been upping of late, but it appears that he and video director Matthew Daniel Siskin have been thinking about the miracle of birth and the inauguration of our new orange fuhrer.
Siskin, by the way, is Beyonce’s webmaster (or something).
Update: Clever nerds have discovered a cached merch page indicating that a new album, also titled Pure Comedy, is due March 31. Plus: album artwork.
Update #2: NPR reveals that Pure Comedy is due April 7 on Sub Pop Records.
Continue reading New Father John Misty video: Pure Comedy
Video: The Flaming Lips – “Sunrise (Eyes Of The Young)”
Well it looks like Wayne Coyne made it through his midlife crisis and is back to making music again. I’ll admit I was turned off by Coyne’s recent behavior where he left his wife, allegedly started taking drugs after years of relative sobriety, and began running around with Miley Cyrus (not that there’s anything wrong with that). Around that same time the Flaming Lips had become the feel-good, never-turn-down-a-festival-appearance party band, making a cartoon mockery of the fundamental weirdness that had made them so appealing in the first place.
Remember when it just seemed INSANE that “She Don’t Use Jelly” became a hit? That was 22 years ago, bubba, and Yoshimi was 14 years ago. You can’t begrudge a band for sticking with it and gaining fans and success, but it would be hard to argue that they hadn’t gotten sidetracked over the past few years. There’s more to life than confetti cannons and balloons.
I was pleased with the slow-burn psychedelia of their Riot Fest performance this year. There were still confetti cannons and balloons, of course, but the music didn’t pander to the shirtless party bros. They weren’t taking their music — or their audience — for granted. Longtime Lips fans will give all the credit for any return to form to Steven Drozd, and maybe that’s fair. Drozd is said to be the only real musician in the band, but even if that’s accurate, Wayne Coyne is still the front man and is clearly responsible for steering the ship. From the three songs they’ve released so far from Oczy Mlody, due January 13 on Warner Bros, they’re heading into some interesting territory.
Continue reading New Flaming Lips video: Sunrise (Eyes Of The Young)
Video: Elvis Presley – “The Wonder You” (with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra)
This is preposterous. It’s ludicrous on several levels. First of all, why are they adding “lush new arrangements” by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra to Elvis recordings? The original single version, recorded live in Las Vegas, was good enough to spend 12 weeks on the charts in 1970 and peak at #9. Why add a new orchestral accompaniment? It sounds fine, but completely unnecessary.
And why cast Kate Moss to lip sync and roll around on a couch and a piano? What demographic are they marketing this toward? It just seems misguided and weird.
Sure, Kate Moss is cool and pretty. I’ve harbored a crush on her since I first saw her Calvin Klein ads in 1992 when I was in college. Years later I was amused by the outrage when video emerged of her huffing blow in the studio with Pete Doherty and Mick Jones while they were recording the Babyshambles debut. I guess it’s kind of cool that a 42 year old lady can still be seen a sex symbol…or something.
But really, what’s the point? I know there is a legion of geriatric diehards and collectors who buy everything with Elvis’ name on it, and this is actually the second collection of Royal Philharmonic overdubs. The first one, If I Can Dream, was apparently successful enough to warrant a sequel. I suppose we can all be thankful that at least this new volume doesn’t contain a “duet” with Michael Bublé.
I love Elvis. And I truly believe that anybody who claims to care about music should own the Sun sessions and the 1969 American Sound recordings (Elvis at Sun and Suspicious Minds are good collections). And if you like “The Wonder of You” by all means check out Elvis on Stage, where the original version appears; it’s a very fun recording of Elvis at his vocal peak backed up by a great band led by James Burton.
Continue reading The world’s worst Elvis impersonator: Kate Moss
Video: A Tribe Called Quest – “We The People…”
We all saw them do it on SNL last week and now here’s the official video for the first single from the new Tribe new album, We Got It from Here… Thank You 4 Your Service. Here’s the oral history of how this record came to happen; it’s a good read, so check it out.
All you Black folks, you must go
All you Mexicans, you must go
And all you poor folks, you must go
Muslims and gays, boy, we hate your ways
So all you bad folks, you must go
Seems rather timely.
Continue reading New Tribe video: We The People…