Category Archives: 10

DVD: Kurt Cobain – About a Son

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Label: Shout Factory Released: February 19, 2008 It’s hard to ask someone to talk about themselves over an extended set of interviews and not seem self-absorbed. For Cobain, it would probably be impossible to ask that over a twenty minute sit-down let alone something this extensive. Cobain comes across as a whiner, whether he’s crying about his childhood, his health… Read more »

DVD: Nirvana – Unplugged in New York

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Label: Geffen Records Released: November 20, 2007 I have long felt that Nirvana is grossly overrated. Bleach was a good grunge album and Nevermind managed to both transcend the genre and be in the right place at the right time, exploding into the faltering world of commercial rock. Even so, it’s more commercially important than musically. In Utero, however, is… Read more »

DVD: Iron Maiden – Live After Death

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Label: Universal Music Released: February 5, 2008 The fact that this DVD flat out rules is no surprise. Iron Maiden is one of metal’s most technical and most literate bands and, as if that’s not enough, they’re a blast live. Other than a few foggy Spinal Tap-esque moments during the epic “Rime of the Ancient Mariner,” Maiden never comes across… Read more »

Review: Woody Guthrie and Lead Belly – Folkways: The Original Vision

Label: Smithsonian Folkways Released: April 25, 2005 It’s interesting how sometimes, two completely different artists can embody the greatest facets of an entire style of music. For example, take a look at The Beatles and The Rolling Stones; one is the hopeful and adventurous warmth of daylight, while the other is the nihilistic swagger of darkness. And while rock fans… Read more »

Review: Tia Carrera – You Are the War 7″

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Label: Arclight Records Released: 2007 Over the course of rock history, “Louie Louie” has been covered countless times. Its simplicity and infectious hook make it an easy task for even the most pedestrian bands. On the other hand, to my knowledge, only one band has covered Lungfish’s “You Are the War.” There’s a few reasons: Lungfish is fairly far outside… Read more »

Review: Paul Robeson – On My Journey: Paul Robeson’s Independent Recordings / Pete Seeger – American Favorite Ballads, Vol. 5

   Label: Smithsonian Folkways Released: August 28, 2007 (Paul Robeson) & October 9, 2007 (Pete Seeger) On the surface, these two albums have little in common. But I happened to put them both on my iPod, and by hearing each artist’s songs randomly mixed with Primal Scream and Pedro the Lion and Picastro (it was a “p” kind of week), I… Read more »

Review: Various Artists – Down Home Saturday Night

Label: Smithsonian Folkways Recordings Released: July 31, 2007 As the liner notes describe, all across the country on a Saturday night music and good times go hand in hand and always have. American roots music, from bluegrass to zydeco, has been an influence on modern music as well as a vital part of life for many, many people. It’s the… Read more »

Review: Chuck Ragan – The Blueprint Sessions (singles club and CD)

Label: No Idea Records Released: September 2006 – June 2007 For those expecting to hear the next generation of Hot Water Music, go buy the Draft’s In a Million Pieces. Chuck Ragan’s The Blueprint Sessions only shares his former band’s emotional appeal, but the music itself is far closer to the raw folk/punk that he did with Rumbleseat. This is… Read more »

Review: Buzzcocks – Singles Going Steady

Label: I.R.S. Released: September 1979 Whenever I see (or make as the case may be) a list of the “Greatest Albums Ever” or the “Top 100 Albums of All-Time,” I find it unfair to include greatest hits collections and anthologies…with one exception: The Buzzcocks’ Singles Going Steady. I love the album, but that’s not the reason for the exception. Unlike… Read more »