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What are you listening to Part the Third


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2 hours ago, TMoney said:

 

Old school punks like Doug

At the best of times, pop punk is not my thing. So modern pop punk is probably a pass for me. But as a person with odd taste, I certainly don't begrudge anyone to listen to anything they enjoy.

That said, with the horror of the trump years, the appeal of angry nihilism has definitely waned and with it the appeal of any punk rock at all. I'm frankly not sure why anyone listens to anything other than thelonius monk.

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On 7/29/2022 at 5:13 AM, Hopstretch said:

BBC Music have finally put almost all the "Later with Jools Holland" archive on YouTube and oh boy I am like a kid in a candy store.

 

Did you see her on the Letterman show?

 

 

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Running through Rolling Stone’s surprisingly modern-leaning 100 Greatest Country Albums list, so this morning Sturgill Simpson’s Metamodern Sounds In Country Music.

‘The irascible Simpson joked to Rolling Stone in 2014 that Metamodern Sounds in Country Music was his “hippie love record.” Maybe so, but it was undeniably a Nashville game changer. After the sonically adventurous album’s release, numerous artists either cited it or tried to duplicate it. They needn’t have tried: Only Simpson, well-read on cosmic theories and tired of outlaw-country comparisons, could have pulled off an album this one-of-a-kind. “Turtles All the Way Down” is a psilocybin-fueled trip through the religions of the world; “It Ain’t All Flowers” is a cacophony of shrieks, howls, and dub; and “Living the Dream” is the ultimate slacker’s lament. “I don’t have to do a goddamn thing ’cept sit around and wait to die,” he sings. Not even Townes Van Zandt sounded as dejected.’ —J.H.

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Continuing the list and following Kris above - Sammi Smith's Help Me Make It Through The Night

'Help Me Make It Through the Night is a masterpiece of country soul that perfectly bridges outlaw sensibility with lush Nashville studio sounds. It has ballads like “There He Goes” and “Lonely Street” that match the intimacy of Dusty in Memphis and wounded delivery of Tammy Wynette, thanks to Smith’s powerful, husky alto. There are even bright flashes of popular music from the era, like the sitar effect in “With Pen in Hand” or the supremely funky drums in “This Room for Rent” and “But You Know I Love You.” But its defining moment will always be Smith’s recording of the Kris Kristofferson-penned title cut, which won Smith a Grammy. Hundreds of cover versions exist now, but no one has ever been able to match the smoldering desire in her performance. —J.F.'

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Ex. 

 

 

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Brandy Clark’s 12 Stories
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ex.

 

‘Her stories are about women who cheat, who are cheated upon, and who divorce husbands they’ve outgrown, and her songs are full of punchlines that delight and devastate. One working-class narrator makes certain to “pray to Jesus” for help but also makes sure to “play the lotto.” And seemingly “crazy women,” she explains, “are made by crazy men” — it’s the sharpest misogyny explainer since Kitty Wells schooled men on who made honky-tonk angels. Throughout, Clark’s secret weapon is her singing, which comes off easy and game for fun then soars heartbreakingly high and lonesome like a blue-collar Emmylou Harris. —D.C.’

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So as the disclaimer states*, this is pretty much a greatest Nashville list, which is a little strange to call a definitive Country list. Still use it for what it is. Occasionally, you even glimpse in more modern lines. Okay, Steve Earle and Jason Isbell are in. Whiskeytown/Adams and Tupelo/Wilco are out (Not a direct response to Nashville?). Anyway, geographic lines leads to inclusions like the big, beautiful Bobbie Gentry's Ode to Billie Joe.

Bobbie-Gentry.thumb.jpeg.15575769701d4e0e956a429c526de7ae.jpeg

Ex. What a great A/B 45 release...

 

 

* "What you won’t find much of is alt-country, country rock, and Americana, as we tried to keep this list focused on music produced by the Nashville system (or in direct response to it) and marketed to the country audience. That means no Uncle Tupelo or Eagles, though Lucinda Williams and Gillian Welch make appearances for sterling work that exists comfortably in both worlds. Maybe we’ll get to that country-rock list another time."

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3 hours ago, mikeymad said:

Wallflowers

Wallflowers
Jinjer
2021 

https://album.link/i/1569867454

Example:

I really appreciate her enunciation while screaming with the contrast to her strong singing voice. Keeps me very engaged. 

Apparently she doesn't "force it", so won't destroy her voice by doing what she does.  Kinda impressive, even if the end result is not necessarily my thing:

 

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I have learned to appreciate the technique in the last few years. Now, it is about finding singers that can sing and scream, but the real trick for me is enunciation. If I can understand the screamed words without following along with printed lyrics (taking me out of the listening), then I can stay in the groove and get the message at the same time. And you are correct, 'good' screaming uses false folds and do not harm vocal cords. 

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This ends my unexpected Labor Day weekend Country immersion. Will come back to the list in the near future, but ending with #33, Emmylou Harris' Pieces Of The Sky. So consistently a thing, it's probably someone else's [Joni Mitchell's] Blue

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ex.

'Pieces of the Sky was her proper launch as an artist truly in her own right and stands as one of her defining statements. The careful, note-perfect production may have smoothed over some of the rough edges of the honky-tonk she clearly loved, as heard in her version of Merle Haggard’s “Bottle Let Me Down.” But she more than compensated with fantastic taste in songs (by Dolly Parton, the Louvin Brothers, and Rodney Crowell, among others). And that beautiful but slightly downcast voice — perhaps still mourning the loss of her duet partner Gram Parsons two years earlier — lent the album a mournful elegance. —D.B.'

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On 9/4/2022 at 5:01 PM, blessingx said:

Continuing the list and following Kris above - Sammi Smith's Help Me Make It Through The Night

'Help Me Make It Through the Night is a masterpiece of country soul that perfectly bridges outlaw sensibility with lush Nashville studio sounds. It has ballads like “There He Goes” and “Lonely Street” that match the intimacy of Dusty in Memphis and wounded delivery of Tammy Wynette, thanks to Smith’s powerful, husky alto. There are even bright flashes of popular music from the era, like the sitar effect in “With Pen in Hand” or the supremely funky drums in “This Room for Rent” and “But You Know I Love You.” But its defining moment will always be Smith’s recording of the Kris Kristofferson-penned title cut, which won Smith a Grammy. Hundreds of cover versions exist now, but no one has ever been able to match the smoldering desire in her performance. —J.F.'

476dec7b83c3f81911823ead9d3ab27a.thumb.jpg.43a2b2fbed8b5becefbdaaf38017e464.jpg

Ex. 

 

 

Very well said.

Also, Sammi Smith helped inspire Kris' 'Why Me Lord'.

She invited him to church one morning, where he had some kind of deep soul searching experience, and went home and immediately penned the song.

I think Nashville would have been a fantastic place to be in those days.

One of the singers who sang many of Kris' songs back in the day, is one of my favorite vocalist... Ray Price had an amazing voice, and I was lucky enough to see him in concert in Corpus Christi. He was 81 and hadn't lost his vocal abilities at all.

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Rather than watch the apple event I spent an hour and a half listening to prog. You decide what is a better use of time.

Innocence & Danger

Innocence & Danger
The Neal Morse Band
2021

https://album.link/i/1570081572

I have followed Neal for many years. I really liked Spock's Beard back in the day and he also started his own project. But he also had a higher calling, and the music suffered in content and quality. I am happy with this 2021 album, there are some great jams, some great themes, and a 31 minute track (above). I won't call this a return to roots, or classic Neal, because I think all music should look forward and evolve. But I like this album.

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I've become a big fan of Neal Morse in the last few years.  I really dig his musicianship, and his 7-string guitar hero, Eric Gillette has turned into a bit of a hero of mine as well.  Good thing I don't listen to lyrics much, though, good god...

On 9/5/2022 at 7:12 PM, mikeymad said:

I have learned to appreciate the technique in the last few years. Now, it is about finding singers that can sing and scream, but the real trick for me is enunciation. If I can understand the screamed words without following along with printed lyrics (taking me out of the listening), then I can stay in the groove and get the message at the same time. And you are correct, 'good' screaming uses false folds and do not harm vocal cords. 

I have not.  I "put up" with harsh vocals, with very few exceptions, but only when the music is so great. My criteria is similar to yours -- far too many of them are just too "one-note", and as a real musician, that just irks me.  I find the exceptions hard to find, especially when I don't go seeking them out. 

Sesame Street Dancing GIF

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On 8/30/2021 at 9:00 AM, TMoney said:

Chvrches - Screen Violence

Very solid 4th album from a band that at this point knows who they are and confidently embraces it.

I'm really looking forward to seeing them live assuming the tour comes through San Francisco in December and isn't derailed by COVID.

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Finally catching up to this in my queue.

Screen Violence

Screen Violence
CHVRCHES
2021

Example:

 Agreed - solid album

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I autosugged myself, again.  Had a nice little interaction with the woman, herself, on Facebook, so now listening to what will probably be my favourite album of 2022 and favourite recent discovery, Yaya Kim, a.k.a Yaya

optimize

It's a bizarre album considering it's essentially art-pop -- 3 full length albums worth of material, more or less:

CD1 (Trip-hop, Rock, Funk, Soul, Pop)
CD2 (Nu-tango rock, Jazz)
CD3 (World music, Crossover, Classic, Avant-garde)

She does everything herself, including the videos.

 

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On 9/5/2022 at 7:12 PM, mikeymad said:

I have learned to appreciate the technique in the last few years. Now, it is about finding singers that can sing and scream, but the real trick for me is enunciation. If I can understand the screamed words without following along with printed lyrics (taking me out of the listening), then I can stay in the groove and get the message at the same time. And you are correct, 'good' screaming uses false folds and do not harm vocal cords. 

Okay, I'm a fan, now.  The music is CRAZY good.

 

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They are pretty easy to become fans of. 

Me:

LongGone

LongGone
Joshua Redman, Brad Mehldau, Christian McBride, Brian Blade
2022 

https://album.link/i/1632077032

Example - live:

Better recording on the album - but a bit more fun live.

Redman - yes, Mehldau - yes, McBride - yes, Blade - yes. Powerhouse of a group, I hate that we only get them every two years or so. But worthy wait for goodness. I am glad that they all do solo and other projects to keep my ears happy.

Edited by mikeymad
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I have been following and listening to some new tracks from JID over that last few months. So, I had some idea going into this Tiny Desk.

But I was impressed with the mix of hiphop and jazz elements. Creating something a bit new, that I am liking. 

Edit: but don't get me wrong, it is rough.

Edited by mikeymad
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