Thursday, November 21, 2019

FRIENDS AGAIN/Trapped And Unwrapped (Deluxe 2CD Edition) review!

FRIENDS AGAIN
TRAPPED AND UNWRAPPED
(Deluxe 2CD Edition/Cherry Red Records)


The Scottish Rock/Pop music scene has always been ripe with talent. In fact, there have been so many great Scottish artists/bands, it would be impossible to list them all. From Pilot, The Sensational Alex Harvey Band, and Bay City Rollers to BMX Bandits, Belle & Sebastian, and The Orchids, the Rock, Pop and Indie Charts have been filled with acts that understood the mechanics of Pop music and how to create art from inspiration. In the late ‘70s and early ‘80s, Scotland gave birth to many great bands that didn’t bother the U.S. charts all that much but are highly regarded today: The Bluebells, Aztec Camera, Lloyd Cole & The Commotions, Endgames, Altered Images, and Orange Juice. One band that certainly deserves to be added to that list is Friends Again.

Friday, November 15, 2019

AMPED™ FEATURED ALBUM OF THE WEEK: JULIANA HATFIELD/SINGS THE POLICE!

JULIANA HATFIELD

SINGS THE POLICE

11.15.19


Juliana Hatfield has remained an unpredictable artist during her 30+ year career. Since the formation of Blake Babies in the late ‘80s, straight through her most recent solo work, she has surprised critics and fans with her many musical projects. Since Blake Babies’ original demise in 1991, she’s formed her own band Juliana Hatfield Three as well as getting involved in many other projects including Minor Alps (with Matthew Caws of Nada Surf), The I Don’t Cares (with Paul Westerberg), The Lemonheads, and more. Along the way, she’s been involved in a few Blake Babies reunions while continually movie forward as an artist.

Thursday, November 14, 2019

THE RESIDENTS/pREServed titles reviewed!


THE RESIDENTS

A NICKLE IF YOUR DICK'S THIS BIG 
(2CD pREServed Edition)

NOT AVAILABLE 
(2CD pREServed Edition)

Available NOW!

If you’ve never heard The Residents, then I can guarantee that you have NEVER heard any band quite like them.  Words cannot describe them, but a quick spin of their music doesn’t do them justice either: they are a band that needs to be LISTENED to instead of just merely ‘heard’.  In fact, they are a band that needs to be absorbed into one’s system.  They are a band that constantly challenges the listener, sometimes even confusing them, but they are also a band that rewards the listener with music that is both dark and brooding as well as warm and inviting.  They are as childish as they are pretentious.  They are avant-garde and uncommercial yet strangely melodic and addicting. The Residents’ biography is filled with truths, fibs, lies, half-truths and sworn affidavits, but I won’t go into all of that.  You can Google their story on numerous websites. But what I will say is that the band’s members were never named and their identities were kept secret.  The anonymity of the band members helped to ensure that their art was based on the music and presentation and not by what they looked like or who they were/are. Imagine being able to listen to a band and formulate an opinion without knowing their age, race, or sexuality. And guess what? They’re still around 45 years after the release of their debut album, MEET THE RESIDENTS.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

THE AMPLIFIER HEADS/Loudah review!


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THE AMPLIFIER HEADS
LOUDAH

Available NOW!

The internet is full of ‘rumors’ that guitar-fueled Rock ‘n’ Roll is dead. Those rumors are unequivocally false. They are lies. To use a more modern phrase, they are ‘fake news’. There are plenty of artists on the scene making a racket with their six strings – you just have to open your eyes and ears and go outside the Billboard charts to find them. Better yet, let’s just cut to the chase: LOUDAH, the debut album by The Amplifier Heads, is the Rock album that we’ve been waiting for and deserve! Like a mix of early Beatles, mid-period Rolling Stones and prime-era Ramones, The Amplifier Heads are pure, no-bullshit Rock ‘n’ Roll. And it couldn’t have come at a better time…

Saturday, November 9, 2019

POPsided: SPAZ reviews the tops in Pop!


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 JEFF LESCHER/All Is Grace 
(Gangreen Records)

Chicago-based Indie Rock band Green is so underrated. They may often times be raw and loose, but their Pop smarts shine through. Like an inspired blend of Ray Davies and Prince banging out T.Rex songs in a garage on a hot summer’s day, Green is unique and unclassifiable. Anyone that thinks Green is Power Pop doesn’t understand Power Pop and they certainly don’t understand Green. However, the band’s melodic sense is undeniable. With releases that stretch back to the late ‘80s, Green may be ignored in their home country but they are Rock stars in Holland.  Yes, really.  And it all boils down to the talents of singer/songwriter Jeff Lescher.

Friday, November 8, 2019

AMPED™ FEATURED ALBUM OF THE WEEK: NICK CAVE AND THE BAD SEEDS/GHOSTEEN


NICK CAVE AND THE BAD SEEDS
GHOSTEEN

11.8.19

Australian singer/songwriter Nick Cave is a music industry veteran and Rock icon. He’s been releasing albums for 40 years and shows no sign of slowing down, creatively. And after years of success, failure, tragedy, and triumph, Nick Cave remains a survivor. From his early days fronting The Boys Next Door through their transformation into The Birthday Party, Nick Cave became one of the most infamous Post-Punk musicians of the late ‘70s and early ‘80s.  When The Birthday Party split, he formed Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds, gravitating towards a sound that was more atmospheric and less abrasive. For 35 years, Cave has become of the most respected songwriters and performers of his generation. In fact, his songwriting is now compared to greats like Leonard Cohen, Bob Dylan, Van Morrison, and Neil Young. And looking back over his catalog, those comparisons are well-deserved.

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

Strut Records' QUINTON SCOTT: An EXCLUSIVE interview!


STEPHEN SPAZ SCHNEE: Strut Records is celebrating its 20th Anniversary in 2019. How does it feel knowing that you’ve come this far and your work is being embraced by music fans the world over?
QUINTON SCOTT: It does feel like a nice landmark – Strut has always been a labour of love and it is always really rewarding to see the reaction to the music. It’s also a better time than ever to be running the label, I think. There are so many other great labels around now and, as a result of that and the digital world, buyers have great choice and are much, much more open now to different niches and adventurous ideas.