Monday, October 28, 2013

"One Of Us Is The Killer" by The Dillinger Escape Plan

The Dillinger Escape Plan is a band that's been getting good press in the guitar magazines lately. During my subscription they have been the subject of at least three articles. Considering the amount of guitar work and guitar albums out there, that is certainly high praise indeed.

In the first article Guitar World described this band as "math metal," whatever that is. The guitar player was also posing holding a graphing calculator. Whatever all this meant, it sounded cool to this guy. There's never been any question about my nerdiness. The Geek Flag flies freely.

In the latest write up, the were compared to Animals As Leaders and Periphery as leaders of prog, not just prog metal, but modern prog. It was impossible to hear about this band and walk away without a desire to hear what their music was like.

Monday, October 21, 2013

"Let It Be" by The Replacements

The Replacements are a legendary band about which I know nothing. Recently a friend of mine mentioned that one of his guitars gets a good Paul Westerberg tone. I then thought really hard, lest I tell my friend I have no idea who this man is, and then I remembered reading an interview with Paul Westerberg in Guitar World when he was recording a solo record. It also seemed to me like Paul was an arrogant person with LSD (Lead Singer's Disease).

I've lost the plot already. Well, my five year mission is to explore strange new bands, but sometimes return to earth to fill up too. So, here we're looking at something that probably everybody in the world has heard but me.

I understand now that when I said 7 years ago I'd heard all the bands that needed to be heard, that my local radio stations were greatly remiss in introducing me to everybody who deserved an introduction. It's like when I found the book "Lies My History Teacher Told Me," except far less serious.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

"Maiden England '88" by Iron Maiden


This summer they finally came back to St. Louis. Being an old man now, I went with my friend and his son, who's nearly as old as I was the last time I saw Maiden and older than I was the first time! This is relevant because Iron Maiden was recreating this 1988-89 Tour and played a nearly identical set list. There were a handful of songs that were different between the 2013 and 1998 versions.

Well, why are we looking at a 25 year old Iron Maiden live album? Because this is the 2013 re-release with extra tracks and presumably the reason why the Irons thought it would be a good idea to get back on the road and play all these songs again.  The show was spectacular in case you're wondering. Megadeth opened and played a great set and Dave didn't talk about any of the things that have made us all collectively groan....

Monday, October 14, 2013

"Outlaw Gentleman & Shady Ladies" by Volbeat

What the hell is Volbeat? Seriously, is there anybody who can tell me what the world Volbeat is trying to do here? It would be easy to say they're just trying to be awesome.

And they're succeeding at that quite handily.

About two years ago, their preceding album, "Above Heaven/Beyond Hell" made its way to me and the singer really seemed like something very special. No growls, no shrieks, just some sort of singing over metal. It gave me pangs of Dragonforce, but lacking the over the top shred and certainly lacking the Steve Perry-like vocals.

This was a band that aroused my interest in them and was bound and determined to finally understand what the hell it is they're doing. This the fourth album of theirs I have gotten and I honestly still do not get what they're going for, but at least they're still awesome.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

"Walk Through Exits Only" by Philip H. Anselmo & the Illegals

There is nothing more in this world than Phil Anselmo loves than starting new bands, right? (Pantera, Down, Superjoint Ritutal, and then his litany of side projects.)

Today we're looking at Phil's latest musical brainchild: a solo album. (Shouldn't that be your first step when you have music to get out and your 800 bands just won't let you get it out?) I kid, I kid and Phil's a strong, crazy fella who could really hurt

Interestingly enough, Phil did not create a lineup with household name, metal lifers. At this point, Phil's got enough pull to pretty much line up any metal guys he wants.Honestly, I don't know who any of the other players are: Marzi Montazeri on guitar, Bennett Bartley on bass, and Joe Gonzalez on drums.

Monday, October 7, 2013

"Specter At The Feast" by Black Rebel Motorcycle Club

This album kind of arrived to me as a surprise really. While browsing, I saw this vintage looking cover and I took a look at it. The cover art is cool and their name is cool. Frankly, having both of these things does make me interested in your band. Cool cover art and band names that aren't horribly stupid seem to be a thing of the past honestly.

In this day and age, most of us can check the googles for any information in an instant. So, a quick google search of this band showed they have been at the music game for quite some time. They were described as a Lo-Fi indie rock band. OK, this is something that might be enjoyable to me, so I left with it.

It really appears to me that the term Lo-Fi has been co-opted like my can of Coke in the office fridge. To me, Lo-Fi has meant the opposite of Hi-Fi, i.e. less than clear sounding. I can't really tell you what it's supposed to mean now, but it certainly means something else.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Album Review: "Super Session" by Bloomfield, Kooper, and Stills

Super Session
This is a first look at a classic album for me. As has been mentioned in other posts, I play a Gibson Les Paul, poorly. I've also joined a Les Paul community online and from that community many new artists have made their ways into my library.

One of the guys whose name is bandied about frequently is Mike Bloomfield. Well, he has not been played on my local classic radio stations in St. Louis, so his music never made it to my ears.

It was suggested to me that I purchase this album. Well, honestly, I'm still not terribly familiar with whom Al Kooper is, but I think everybody knows who Stephen Stills is. Recently Stephen Stills was profiled in Guitar World for his boxed set and that has also piqued my interest.