For those in the know, Jaws is a bit of a big deal for us. What can I say? I married into it, so to speak. Anyway, the Hollywood Bowl is hosting a two-night orchestra and film pairing in late July. No, unfortunately it’s not John Williams conducting (it’s David Newman), but this opportunity is certainly not one to be missed. My wife (and working Editor of The Groove) has never been to The Bowl, and as Jaws is her favorite movie (she’s a keeper, am I right?!), this Hollywood Bowl Orchestra accompanying the original Summer Blockbuster duo was a no-brainer. Tix are still avail, so if you’re in the area, do yourself a solid.
FINALLY completed the much anticipated (and surprisingly elusive) discography with, what appears to be, the last recorded songs by this embarrassingly underrated legend, Tim Hardin. Unforgiven was released in 1981, after Hardin’s unfortunate, yet unsurprising death. As the hype sticker indicates: These are the last eight memorable tunes written and recorded by Tim Hardin (Dec 1980). This is now the second time I’ve purchase this album, which I was (obviously) reluctant to do. You see, I’d shelled out $40 for this exact pressing just under two years ago, but it never arrived, and I was out the $40. This time around, Unforgiven arrived sealed. Virgin vinyl, kids! Like with anything Tim Hardin touched, this is essential spinning material.
Witnessing Jello Biafra’s spoken word performance at Madison, Wisconsin’s Barrymore Theatre was something of a marathon… to say the very least. I’m happy to have experienced this entertaining sprint, though the unexpected 4+ hours eclipsed the rest of our evening’s planned activities. All of this is irrelevant, of course, because we were told, firsthand, about the brutal and legal-laden break-up of the Dead Kennedys. If invited to do it all again, I’d probably say yes, which is what you should say if you see Jello’s name pop up on one of your local theater fliers. The man is a legend, a pissed off legend, but certainly worthy of the nominal cover charge.
Rustling beneath the cover of midnight shadows lives the crippling dangers of the unknown. Blood-stained wingtips disturb calm and reflective puddles, while silence strangles the throat of innocence with a conservative necktie. This is Murder, Inc.. 12 mischievous anthems of criminal intent and strong-armed justice tussling with the nicotine-stained hands of fate. This Series 2000 release from Time Records (1960) was composed and conducted by Irving Joseph, and makes for an alluring inner monologue soundtrack for those restless nights when stress and suspicion creep gingerly beneath your window. If Sam Spade owned a jazz club, Murder, Inc. would be served every Sunday morning… with a mimosa and a side of ham-and-cheese waffles.
Lots to, let’s say, digest in this collage insert from Lard’s 1997 masterwork, Pure Chewing Satisfaction. Keep in mind, this is just one page (out of 30) that accompanied this album. It would take someone close to a year to read the entire booklet (purely estimating here), which is about par for Jello Biafra-related releases (Plastic Surgery Disasters, and I Blow Minds for A Living come to mind).
This is how I communicate with my friends… with various photographs of recent record-related acquisitions. This (brief) conversation was pivoted around the 1983 Buena Vista Records release, Star Wars: The Further Adventures – Planet of the Hoojibs. This 7″ record and 24-page book set provides a tike-sized adventure, based on characters created by George Lucas. This particular journey was adapted from a Marvel Comic’s story by David Michelinie. Que The More You Know theme.
With all the frenzy surrounding the upcoming Beastie Boys book, it’s relatively easy to forget about the hardcover book that accompanied the Beastie Boys Anthology: The Sounds of Science. Presented here is a nice, if simple, layout of some of (16 to be exact) the Boys’ classic album covers, which also doubles as the book’s cover. Whatever your weekend plans may be, make sure they include the Beastie Boys.
I’d just like to say thank you to California State University, Long Beach’s KJazz (88.1 FM) for instilling calming and soothing easy listening jazz on my morning commutes into work. It’s because of this prominent station, and its perfectly timed playing of Bewitched by Paul Desmond, that I didn’t slam on my horn and offer screams of rage to the choch in the white SUV that swerved in front of me, forcing me to slam on my brakes and almost caused a much, unneeded accident. Serenity remained, and for that, I have KJazz to thank. (Photo above lifted from the internet.)
Let’s take a quick moment and talk about Robert Plant and his 1983 album, The Principle of Moments… in fact, let’s not. Let’s save that for another day when I can re-spin in the attempts to uncover this fine and meaningful Principle. INSTEAD, let’s drastically shift gears to the forthcoming Mad Caddies reggae covers album due out on June 15th. A few sneaky digital tracks have surfaced, including a stellar version of NOFX’s She’s Gone from their 1992 classic, White Trash, Two Heebs and a Bean. Please do yourself a favor and follow the link over to Spotify and check it out. You’re going to want a copy of this 12-track album of classic punk songs with a Mad Caddies-infused reggae twist. I can’t wait for this album to arrive.
I know little-to-nothing about the debut album by Basement Jaxx, 1999’s Remedy. The bulk of my knowledge of this electro-house duo comes from the 13-tracks on their sophomore effort, 2001’s Rooty. Never one to pass up on a great deal, I was surprised to see this double LP in VG+ shape listed for only $5. She just arrived, which means I know what our Tuesday night entails.
That’s the official vinyl color for this recent pressing (May 25th) of Odessey and Oracle by British chaps, The Zombies. Technicolour Explosion. (Yet) another Newbury Comics exclusive (limited to 1000 copies), this gorgeous reissue feels like 180 gram vinyl, though this perk isn’t noted anywhere in the item’s description. This is now our third version of this essential album, with (at least) one more to come… the US alt cover reissue from 1969.
It surprises and kinda weirds me out that this double LP of Deltron 3030 Instrumantals is still available from Newbury Comics. Limited to a staggering 300 copies, this 12-track giant strips out Deltron while preserving Dan the Automator and Kid Koala’s legendary foundation. If you have half a mind, are in to amazing conscious hip hop, and have $24 in your pocket or bank account… GET THIS ALBUM!
1982… when Dead Kennedy’s were recording and releasing Plastic Surgery Disasters, Afrika Bambaataa & the Soulsonic Force dropped Planet Rock (aka Don’t Stop… Planet Rock), which remains, in my humble opinion, one of the best hip-hop compositions of all time. This three track 12″ consists of the master, or hero track, a Planet Rock Bonus Beats ditty, and a 9+ minute instrumental version. An absolute must for, well, anyone, really, Planet Rock remains Bambattaa and team’s must successful adventure. This track is perfect background fodder for your next casual dinner party. Play loud and often.
Chalk this one up to “when the hell did I buy this” album. 1958’s compilation of The Four Lads’ Greatest Hits is a Columbia Records release (CL 1235) and features this Canadian crew’s biggest, million-selling singles. From Moments to Remember, to Istanbul, The Four Lads’ Greatest Hits covers all the famous pop-tune bases, in one neatly packaged, 12-track record. The Four Lads were prominent mainly from the 50s through to the 70s, but are still active today, some 65 years after their initial inception (they played in Palm Springs back in late March). If you’re looking for the best of the best from this easy listening vocal troupe, look no further than The Four Lads’ Greatest Hits.
So, you don’t want to shell out $75 – $230 for Bernard Herrmann’s original motion picture soundtrack to Vertigo (current market value on Discogs)? I understand. Believe me. Getting a solid copy of this 1958, 7-track must-have can be a killer on your monthly record budget. As an alternative, might I humbly suggest this bootleg copy from 1970? The artwork is different (and a bit better in my opinion), and the exact same 7-tracks can be had for as little as $14.25! If bootlegs, or, you know, the color green isn’t your thing, there is also a Netherlands-only release from 1977 with yet another alternate cover (multiple Kim Novak heads surrounding a stilled hand… for those of you into the macabre). That one is available for as low as $9 on Discogs. So, if saving money without sacrificing the eerie quality of Bernard Herrmann’s Vertigo is more your speed, there are options before you.
It was a Front 242 type of morning, as you can clearly see. I’d all but forgotten about all the groovy goodies inside the 2016 release from Alfa Matrix titled, <Filtered> Pulse. The gold record is limited to 242 pressings, and included is a nifty poster, a postcard type thing, and the 9-track CD of the record. For a solid (gold) EBM fix, look no further than <Filtered> Pulse (also available on clear & solid purple, solid yellow & black, and solid purple colored vinyl. All colors limited to only 242 pressings.)
Finally scored Thomas Bangalter’s Trax On Da Rocks Vol. 2 for a sweet, low price, and inside was this flyer for Roulé Records. I’m missing the Roy Davis Jr. record, and not included on this essential checklist is Together, a collaboration between Bangalter and Davis Jr., and Outrage, an three track 12″, and the last from Bangalter on his French label. If you can find them in the states, pick up every single one of these righteous house records. You won’t be sorry.