Posts Tagged ‘Brian Eno’

ALAN PARSONS, FREE OF THE PROJECT, TRIES ANYTHING ONCE ON HIS PREMIER SOLO ALBUM

September 13, 2019

The first solo album by Alan Parsons. Fresh from a feud-riddled Freudiana with Eric Woolfson.

Before I begin the review I would like to extend a hearty congratulations to Alan Parsons for his Grammy win for the 35th Anniversary Box Set release of Eye In The Sky. It’s always affirming when Parsons get some recognition for his work outside of the dreadful Pink Floyd album and the even more banal Beatles works. I would have liked to have seen him get more recognition for his I Robot album than he got for the other projects. This is yet another unpopular opinion I am sure, but if you want popular opinion, there are millions of other reviewers towing the label dictate. Read them!

Now…

Rock operas are no damn good! If we learn nothing else from this review, we should be at least advised that rock operas can destroy (what the modern music industry would consider) a golden goose. Imagine, you are the head of a record label. Some guy and his pal come to you with a crazy idea that they are going to do a concept album (a good thing), about Edgar Allan Poe. Now, seeing as the median reader age is just a touch younger than I am, Poe was considered the grandfather of Goth. So that would mean dark, forbidding tales of murder, mayhem, deceit, set to catchy prog-rock style tunes.

You would kick their asses right out of the building, never mind your office…

Except ‘some guy’ is Alan Parsons, fresh off of working with Pink Floyd on Dark Side Of The Moon, and having just hung out with The Beatles during their infamous ‘Rooftop Concert’ (the bloke in the orange shirt). Not to mention Al Stewart’s Year Of The Cat album, and Pilot’s debut album From The Album Of The Same Name. If that’s not familiar to you, I KNOW you have heard the Pilot song “Magic” if in no other form, it was bastardized in the commercial for the drug Ozembic. The other guy? Eric Woolfson who was a minor music mogul in that he was managing several bands. Most notably and recognizably Carl Douglas whose song “Kung Fu Fighting” became an annoyance in the mid-seventies. But most importantly, Woolfson was a songwriter. Something Parsons was still finding his way around, but gaining ground quickly being around Woolfson. They share credit on many Parsons Project songs.

And the label was 20th Century Fox. Now the faithful readers of this rag (all two of you) know how I feel about movie production companies owning record labels. I know each and every band member of Miracle Legion will say the same thing; no damn good. As I alluded to before, 20th Century was given a concept album about Edgar Allan Poe and after it, they gave Parsons/Woolfson the boot.

It was at this point, The Alan Parsons Project would truly begin…

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ROXY MUSIC- A LOOK AT THE PREMIER PROG-GLAM BAND WITH THE VIDEO STORY MORE THAN THIS

July 21, 2018

Gaze upon the glam! You can with the DVD More Than This, The Story Of Roxy Music. Photo courtesy of Amazon

My long time mentor back in the 80’s (Storkasaurus Maximus) had introduced me to one Brian Peter George St John le Baptiste de la Salle Eno, RDI, mostly through his Ambient works. If you feel like you are harried, unravelling, uncontrollable, put everything you have aside and just listen to any of his Ambeint series, Music For Airports is a particular pulse calmer. A more commercial route to Avant Eno would be his Music For Films, Vol. 1. There are shorter “songs” with equal amounts of signal-mutation, time-altering melody mangling but in three to five minute increments.

So Imagine my shock when I saw my first Roxy Music video (Virginia Plain) and I was hooked. Then, as the shots hop around the band FOLY FUCK THAT’S ENO! A long blond-ish-colored hair, heavy glam make up, and an outfit to rival future co-conspirator, the late David Bowie. And if that weren’t enough, and by gawd it ought to be, every time the song comes to the measure or so of rest, it’s Eno raping a synthesizer unaccompanied!

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OFF THE RECORD: FRIPP/SYLVIAN CAUGHT LIVE, BUT WITHOUT DAMAGE!

July 3, 2018

This is what you want if you want to hear some alternate versions of Sylvian/Fripp songs from the live CD ‘Damage’.

Robert Fripp and David Sylvian collaborated in the 2000’s to bring us two albums, The First Day, and the follow-up live disc Damage. Those are the two commercial releases that the combo put out. However, we have our hands on an off-market release called “Live From Massey Hall” from our supplier of all things off-market, Live Gig Recordings (look for their link later on in this review).

The history between Fripp and Sylvian initially didn’t progress as Fripp would have liked. At that point Fripp had asked Sylvian to join another (double-trio, six person) version of King Crimson (it appears as though he’d been seeking to usurp Adrian Belew from his long-standing role as lead vocalist and front person for King Crimson for a long time, only having done so within the past couple of years, filling his shoes is Jakko Jaoidsgfilsuxghfp). Sylvian already had a reputation as his own artist and felt he would only be able to collaborate so far under the Crimso moniker. So they settled for a remarkable collaboration that resulted in one of the most catchy prog songs ever recorded (“Jean The Birdman”, with a close second to “God’s Monkey”). We’ll delve into those songs when we get there.

First, I have something to say about the removal of Adrian Belew from King Crimson. Belew claims to be good with it, Fripp claims his status is the honorary 9th member of the new, eight member, three drummer configuration of King Crimson, as Tony Levin was during the Trey Gunn years in the early 2000’s. Belew is not idle by any means. His power trio just played the Irridium in NYC , and he is part of the David Bowie tribute act that is casually touring the world. I do see Fripp’s point about Belew as the front person. The fact is, he was too cheery, too happy in demeanor for the usually dower music that is/was King Crimson.

Returning to this project, the album’s cover photo for The First Day shows Sylvian AND Fripp having ridiculous, laughing smiles on their faces. No issue, they had a positive working relationship. Fripp has one with Brian Eno too, I don’t see them touring No Pussyfooting, or Evening Star, or Equatorial Stars, or Cotswald Gnomes, or…

A rare sight for the period. Robert Fripp laughing in a photograph.

Sylvian remains a solo artist. A fascinating one at that. Someone I hope to get more familiar with in terms of his work, straight away! Fripp is lumbering about with King Crimson. Two guitarists, a bassist/stick player, a keyboardist, a wind player, and three drummers. The samples I have heard from one of their many live performances sounded stiff, uniform and stilted.

I still contend Fripp is losing the plot…

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CONVERGENCE ALERT! ADRIAN BELEW JOINS WITH POLICE DRUMMER STEWART COPELAND AND LEVEL 42 BASSIST MARK KING TO FORM THE SUPERGROUP OF ALL TIME, GIZMODROME!!

May 26, 2018

What happens when a goofball drummer joins a funkoslap bass player, a happy-go-lucky noisemaker guitarist, and a virtuoso keyboardist? Gizmodrome! Photo courtesy Gizmodrome and the internet.

You hear me going on about convergence all the time. This artist I like works with that artist I like. Convergence. Laurie Anderson and Peter Gabriel, the artist who will no longer be named in this column and The Residents, Robert Fripp and Daryl Hall, Talking Heads and Eno, Eno and Devo, Fripp and Bowie, Bowie and the guitarist who is a member in this most unusual band we are about to review, Adrian Belew and if you want circular closure, Adrian Belew and Laurie Anderson.

Slap bassist extraordinaire Mark King has had his unique sound in every household guaranteed. If someone can honestly tell me they haven’t heard the song “Something About You” before, they are either VERY old (and I’m 55, so I know old) or live under a rock. King is one of those ‘taught-myself-how-to-make-a-living-at-this-thing’, type of players. Sophisticated playing with an innovative knack. I could go on about his co-collaborators outside Level 42, but this will be long enough.

The one member I know little about it Vittorio Cosma. He is the host of the band, in Italy. Italy is key to this band’s story as Copeland used the Italian backdrop to lure Belew to compliment the existing band Gizmo. King had opened for The Police back in the day, so Copeland recruited him and with those additions, the band Gizmodrome was born!

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FUCK YOU, FUCK THIS, FUCK THAT AND FUCK THEM. NOW THAT I HAVE YOUR ATTENTION, FATSO JETSON’S “IDLE HANDS” IS WHAT YOU NEED TO HEAR!!!!

August 8, 2017

If you see this disc on sale anywhere, buy it and play it everywhere. Photo courtesy Fatso Jetson

I have long been fascinated by the Desert Rock scene emanating from the Palm Desert area in California. So many quality acts have come out of there, Queens OF The Stone Age (QOTSA) most notably. But there are more acts, Kyuss made a mark, The Dwarves, and some of the names read like a who’s who of music: Nick Oliveri, Blag Dhalia, Alain Johannes (who is currently on tour with P.J. Harvey), and everyone knows this band’s name thanks to global terrorism, Eagles Of Death Metal (if you live under a rock, this was the band that was targeted at the Bataclan massacre in November, 2015).

But there is one band I have not mentioned. Fatso Jetson (FJ). Out of all the bands that rose out of Palm Desert, FJ have to be the heaviest, most groove oriented of the lot. Yes, I know QOTSA are quite heavy on their new album, Villains but I can’t make any judgement on that, it’s not out yet, save for the few songs that have been leaked. I prefer the whole package…

It can be told that I got my hands on the latest disc from Fatso Jetson called Idle Hands. It would seem that all the time spent in the desert ingrained in these guys a rough, take no prisoners approach to song crafting. It comes through during the entire disc.

I know these guys aren’t household names. But they should be. Maybe it’s that familial connection that makes these guys so tight. The lead vocalist and guitarist is Mario Lalli, guitar is also played by Dino Von Lalli, bass is played by Larry Lalli, and drums by Tony Tornay with the addition of Mathias Shneeberger keyboards, guitars, bass and vocals. As it turns out my favorite lyrics on this album were in fact written by Sean Wheeler who also wrote words for “Portuguese Dream” and “The Vincent Letter” (later on in the album).

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MARK MULCAHY FOLLOWS HIS PATH TO BEING HIS VERY OWN TRUE STAR AS THE POSSUM IN THE DRIVEWAY SOARS INTO NEW TERRITORY

May 28, 2017

The newest from Mark Mulcahy “Possum In The Driveway” Photo courtesy of Mezzotint

Mark Mulcahy and I have something in common. We both like the music of (the newly indoctrinated) Dr. Todd Rundgren. A while back I remember reading an interview with Mulcahy in which he expressed dismay over Dr. Rundgren’s initial comments upon taking the stage: “If you came to hear the hits, you may as well turn around and get your money back…”. Much akin to the Doc’s recent position on Donald Trump.

It seems I was in that audience with Mulcahy the night Doc said it. This means little as I am (or was) in a lot of Rundgren’s audiences.

Now keep in mind, Mulcahy is Mulcahy, Rundgren is Rundgren. What that means in at least one aspect, the Rundgren’s time is soon to end. He looks old, he claims to be blind (but I’ve heard that before), and I have yet to purchase or analyze his latest album White Knight. But I know he no longer has the time or patience to make another A Wizard A True Star.

Enter Mark Mulcahy…

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WE ARE WELCOMED INTO LORD RUSS’ COURT! A REGAL, ROYAL, RENAGADE REALITY THAT WE HOPE WILL BRIGHTEN OUR LIVES AFTER MAJOR DISILLUSIONMENT…

July 22, 2013
Perhaps too late for the "Ra" era of Utopia, Lord Russ progs his way onto the Psychedelic scene.

Perhaps too late for the “Ra” era of Utopia, Lord Russ progs his way onto the Psychedelic scene.

I’ve never been much for the Ren Faire style.  My least favorite era of King Crimson?  Madrigal.  The only madrigal I could truly stomach was Genesis.  Other than that, just not my thing.

Then there is another connotation for the word “Lord”, it is resident within the BDSM community.  BDSM stands for Bondage, Discipline, Sadism, Masochism, or in layman’s terms, ‘… but whips and chains excite me’.  Oft times male dominants will title themselves ‘Lord such-and-such’ by which the submissive can only address this person.

So there’s that…

After my cursory listens, I think I would do better to identify with a traveling minstrel than a landed master…  But the minstrel keeps finding psychedelics during his journey…

This disc is titled Heir Of Mystery and has an interesting cover, from an Egyptian curiosity vantage point.

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LIFE IS NOT ALL FUN AND GAMES. A DAY FOR GRACE DEMONSTRATES JUST HOW MUCH AT THE STAGE LEFT STUDIO, 9-13-12

September 24, 2012

Sam Llanas (left) and Doug Vincent (right); co-performers of A Day For Grace. Photo by Matthew Staver

AUTHOR’S NOTE:  The themes and language contained in the following play review are best suited towards a mature audience.  We at BouleBlog strongly suggest that readers under the age of 16 please consult your parents or guardian adults regarding the content and if it is proper for the viewing of minors in the household.  Thank you.

We are spreading our wings here at BouleBlog.  This is our first play review!!!  I can hear the nay-sayers now…  “What does he know about plays?  He’s JUST a musician…”  Yeah, just a musician.  The first flaw in that thinking is, I have spent some (academic) time doing theater.  So I can actually speak some of the lingo, blocking, direction, lighting, cues, etc.  Annette Palutis, you should be proud…

From the pre-show buzz, this promises to be interesting.  The basics of the story are, it is about the son of an alcoholic who is expecting the birth of his first child.  Touchy subject, alcoholism.  It hits close to home.  My best thing to ever happen to me did not see her mother for the last 18 years of her mom’s life as her mother preferred drinking over the company of the woman who was ostensibly her only surviving child.  My best thing has issues with abandonment.  This may be out-of-line, but part of the reason I separated from the syndication was to get down in the trenches.  If getting in those trenches means telling the story of my best thing and how she, as a five year old girl, watched her father suffer a cerebral hemorrhage and drop in front of her eyes only a to die a few days later, so be it.

My personal experience with alcoholism brings me back to the last time I saw my father in the house I grew up in New Jersey.  Ah, fond memories of Muzz (that’s what we called him, not dad, not father, but a nickname given to him by his friends because of his stylish upper lip warmer) gripping me by the collar of my shirt on either side of my neck, slamming me against the double door refrigerator DEMANDING that I tell him I loved him.

I can assure you I didn’t.

But as most victims of alcohol abuse can tell you, I did what was demanded of me (self preservation).  I saw my father once more before alcohol consumption took him at age 55.  At my brother’s wedding.  My brother’s wife was smart, she saw him going down the same road, so she left him!  My brother would drown shortly later in an alcohol-related boating accident.  So I am not unfamiliar with the irreversible damage alcohol abuse can do.

But A Day For Grace is also a comedy!  Huh???

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