I really can’t stand Madonna. Never did care for her arrogant lack of talent. Here’s my one word review for anything she’s ever done: Rotten. That doesn’t stop me from owning five of her records, however… there is something truly wrong with me. Enjoy your Friday, kids!
Oh, The Plan. Once a single album obsession, followed by near decade of (stupidly) swearing them off, to another decade plus of pure, adolescent giddiness. That pretty much sums up my relationship with this iconic DC band. Easily one of my top five all-timers (possibly top three). Meh, you should check ’em out.
I’m a bit perplexed by the fact that I can’t find the Vinyl Me, Please store exclusive to Willie Nelson’s The Words Don’t Fit the Picture. Nothing appears in the search bar for “Willie Nelson” so my first thought is that it’s sold out, which is odd because VMP usually keeps the title online but notes its unavailability. The second clue to this great October ghost is that no 2017 reissue appears within tWDFtP album entry on Discogs. This could have been an premature advertisement, or it could very well be false advertising. Whichever carries more weight, I suppose is the valid answer.
We’re takin’ it to the streets today with The Doobies and their 1976 album, Takin’ It to the Streets. This was the first Doobies album to feature prominent singer / songwriter Michael McDonald, and would mark a subtle turning point in the direction of the band’s new sound. Mr. McD would continue performing with the band, penning some of their most critically successful tracks, until their initial breakup in 1982. Several “reunions” have come to light over the 30+ plus years since “The Doobie Brothers broke up” but it’s always good to start at the beginning, such as this album. I’m an advocate for absorbing a band’s full musical spectrum, and encourage both wave 1 Doobies, and this wave 2.
Ironically, it was after How I Spent My Summer Vacation that I actually took a vacation from these New Jersey mooches. Looking back, I think it was my palette that shifted and not the band’s, because when I spin HISMSV now, it really doesn’t anger me that much. It’s certainly not as good as Maniacal Laughter or their self titled album, but now that I’m older, and presumably wiser, I’m happy it is a part of my collection.
I wish that when I’d gotten the soundtrack to the 1980 film, The Elephant Man, that my 18-year-old self would have realized how amazing the cast was (John Hurt, Anne Bancroft, Anthony Hopkins), and that it was, in fact, a very early David Lynch classic. My memory of this film is spotty, but I’ll never forget the ominous, yet somewhat soothing soundtrack. I really want to watch this film now.
The soundtrack to Jeffrey Lebowski’s one hour and 57 minute life (aka the 1998 Coen Brothers’ film, The Big Lebowski) received a few color variants when it was finally release on vinyl back in 2014. There’s the “red bowling ball finish” the “gold translucent and black split” (presumably to match the tone of the cover art), and this, the “White Russian” version. Whatever your flavor, this soundtrack is an absolute must, as is the movie. If you haven’t already, check it out.
Another one of those records filed so deeply away into collection that I didn’t know I owned. There are more records in this category than I’m willing to admit. The Mighty Lemon Drops and their 1986 debut, Happy Head, must have been an early (verrrrrry early) thrift store find… that or from the $1 bin at Amoeba… before their prices skyrocket. Anyway, Happy Head is very 1986 indie-rock. It’s melodic, structurally sound, and certainly worthy of a spin… I just need to remember I own it.
Unfortunately, these are the only two Nilsson records in the collection. Something happened over the last few years, or appears to have happened anyway, which resulted in Nilsson album prices skyrocketing. I remember seeing casual albums for $8 – $10, where now they fetch upwards to $25-$30. And I’m generally only noticing this hike with Nilsson records specifically. I don’t know… something sure the hell is going on.
Third Man Records released a 5-track EP earlier this year of previously unreleased material from 1967 by The Monks. This copy, though reasonably priced at $10.99, was in fact NOT the hand numbered white vinyl version limited to 300 copies. All good, however, as the music within captures this obscure band during their (presumably) last recording session prior to their inevitable breakup. All-in-all, a necessary acquisition, if only for the sake of modern music history.
One of these is a bootleg. Can you tell which one? Ok, the one on the right is clearly not an original release, but it was pressed on double orange vinyl… though it skips like a rock. Anyway, the bootleg (the one on the right, remember) was acquired first at a thrift store in the San Fernando Valley some years back, and the left was recently purchased from the $1 bin at the shop down the street. Bootlegs certainly have their time and place, but now that I own the original, I’m not sure I’d buy this one again given the opportunity.
It’s been raining Ministry here lately. First was Animositisomina (originally released on compact disc in ’03), followed by this, 2002’s Sphinctour (getting the first-ever vinyl treatment earlier this year… like three weeks ago…), and finally, another first-ever-on-vinyl-blah-blah, 2004’s Houses of the Molé. All three were necessary acquisitions, and I’m now in possession of every studio Ministry album from 1983’s With Sympathy to 2006’s Rio Grande Blood (12 albums in total). Its the simple things, really.
After the success of The Man with the Golden Arm (Academy Award nomination for Best Original Score), Mr. Bernstein ventured away from the silver screen and into the modest world of long play analog media storage. His first album is this 1956 release on Decca, Blues & Brass, which captures what the back sleeve describes as “city blues” throughout 12 dramatic and late-night-comforting tracks. If Mr. Bernstein’s film scoring career wasn’t as hugely successful as it was (he scored The Ten Commandments the same year as this album’s release, mind you), he could have easily notched out a Space Age Pop, lounge-infused, groove-based career as a successful studio musician. Find this album. You’ll thank me later.
The title is all you need to know about Enoch Light’s 1960 insta-classic, Bongos / Flues / Guitars. Command Records, and Mr. Light specifically, cranked out a substantial number of quality LPs in the late 1950s – early 1960s. Though officially credited to Los Admiradores, Mr. Light acted as Director and Producer, not to mention he released the album on his Command label. Buy it for the mid-century cover, keep it for the floral, Latin jazz.
Ministry’s 2003 studio album, Animositisomina FINALLY gets a vinyl release courtesy of UK’s Let Them Eat Vinyl. This 14-year-old album would be the last collaboration between industrial icons Al Jourgensen and Paul Barker, also known as Hypo Luxa and Hermes Pan. This was my go-to album whilst delivering pizza to the west side of Madison, WI before I moved back to California, and I am, without a doubt, ecstatic about its first-ever vinyl release.
From what I can ascertain, Cheap Thrills is a functioning brick and mortar record shop in San Luis Obispo, CA. The internet tells me that it opened its doors back in 1971, and this protective record sleeve tells me that they deal / dealt in compact discs, tapes, video games, and LPs, all of the used variety. With a tagline like “get used… and like it!” it’s no wonder Cheap Thrills is still in business after 46 years.
Not exactly sure why we need to own The Young Gods’ 1986 EP, Envoy! multiple times, but this is our reality. Is it good, yup. Wax Trax! Records #21 (wax021), but double copies?! Somebody dropped the ball (me).