I can’t think of a better way to say goodbye to the end of 2015 than with the beginning of arguably the most prolific force of all British Invasion bands. 30 years of Kinky blues-driven hard rock (1964 – 1994) all started with this album (this copy, an obvious reissue), and as we look forward to a fruitful 2016, let’s not forget the lucrative paths that brought us to today. Goodbye, 2015. You were no 1964.
First on tomorrow’s platter is this 2x 10″ of silly songs by the Mercury Miniature Playhouse, Two Ton Baker. Non-breakable records as it says, we’ll see if this vibrant cover bleeds through to the silly-song grooves within. Redheaded kids on yule logs thumping on piano-playing backgrounds with nearby red-eyed rabbits sell a damn-good tale of voluptuous entertainment, such that it is. We’ll see if ol’ Two Ton packs a worthy punch on ol’ Wednesday morn.
I’m so absolutely beside myself to finally own a working copy of Muswell on 8-track that I’m thoroughly on board with the complete reworking of the playlist for this bass-heavy medium. Have a Cuppa Tea, followed by Skin and Bone, wait… TO CLOSE OUT THE ALBUM?! I continue to tell myself how fortunate I am to have finally found this 12-song, 8-track cartridge of perfection, and will, obviously, welcome it into the family with open, outstretched arms despite its, lets say, unorthodox and creative reordering. I now own Muswell a total of four times, but really, who’s counting?
Just a few of the holiday records that kicked off time travel cookie baking night at the homestead. We started with Willie Nelson’s Pretty Paper (Rudolph, Blue Christmas, White Christmas, etc.), then on to the immensely depressing, The Christmas Spirit by Johnny Cash (Here Was A Man, The Gifts They Gave, The Ballad of Harp Weaver), then we finally got the funky, funky party going with Merry, Merry Christmas by New Kids on the Block (Funky, Funky, Xmas, This One’s for the Children, I Still Believe in Santa Claus). It was certainly a merry evening, at least the parts I can recall…
Back in 2008, Asian Man Records released their 2nd pressing of Alkaline Trio’s 2nd (and last great) album, 1999’s Maybe I’ll Catch Fire. Released on clear red / black swirl, orange / black swirl, 180 gram black and this, white / red swirl, the 2nd pressing contained 3000 records in total and I, of course, felt the need to purchase every variant. Add an original orange vinyl from the first pressing, and I think my Maybe I’ll Catch Fire collection is damn near maxed out.
As generic as this statement is, it was a major selling point, or at least that’s what I can assume by its plastering in large print on the back of Bravo Records’ “Ole” Music of the Bull Ring from The Madrid Festival De Matadors’ Orchestra. There’s nothing quite like intrepid ballads of bloody, charging bulls to bring the whole family together, am I right? As the holidays approach and the kids are acting up, consider 10 tracks of mischievous animal cruelty.
In 1969, Warner-Reprise released a pretty badass 2-LP comp titled, The 1969 Warner-Reprise Record Show. The Kinks, The Mothers of Invention, The Jimi Hendrix Experience, The Fugs, The Dead, Tull, Neil Young, and Fats Domino all make their prominent appearance. It’s a pretty solid comp; mixing well-known with mysterious obscurity. We paid $0.33 for this double LP, and she’s well worth every last dime.
It’s a random Wednesday in December, so let’s celebrate the mundane doldrums of mid-week mediocrity with Boris Sarbek and His Orchestra’s 19?? Gypsy Fire. This enticing, bongo-hugging, ethnically-charged, gas-fireplace-raging, not-so-subtle-hint of sexual emotion is, by all intents and purposes, the perfect mid-week ear snack.
Ever’ so once in a blue moon, it’s Johnny Cash time, and on those rare instances where substance outweighs initial flair, it’s Johnny Cash Sings Hank Williams time. Now, more than ever, is that time. Take stock, kids… stock in the honest things that make you what you are. The rest is dispensable rhetoric, disguised as irreplaceable necessity. Weed through the muck. You’ll thank yourself tomorrow.