Vinyl Vlog 372
COLUMN

Makaya McCravenUniversal Beings(photo: turntablelab.com) I’m not afraid to admit that I don’t get jazz. In a weird way, I’m sort of proud of it. The reason I’m so attracted to punk rock is because it’s a less heady kind of music. That’s not to say that I don’t know what I like. Maybe I don’t get jazz but I can appreciate Thelonious Monk’s Underground, Miles Davis’ Birth of the Cool, and John Coltrane’s A Love Supreme even if it’s only...

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Sunday, 24 February 2019
I Wanna Be Literated #201
BOOKS

Stringer: A Reporter’s Journey in the Congoby Anjan Sundaram I have to keep looking at the cover of Stringer to make sure it’s not a novel. That’s the kind of vivid engrossing story Anjan Sundaram tells in this book. I took a chance on Stringer after seeing Sundaram on the Daily Show many years ago. I was captivated by his story so I thought I’d check out his book. I appreciate a good novel as much as anyone, but I...

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Thursday, 21 February 2019
SPOTLIGHT: Sunshine Rock
FEATURES

WHO: Bob Mould WHAT: Sunshine Rock WHY: I have no clue what Bob Mould had been up to after Husker Du, but if these past two albums are any indication, it would be that the man is determined to rock himself into the stratosphere. Sunshine Rock is a perfect continuation of what made Patch the Sky so great: the songs are simple, catchy, rocking, and loud. It’s no wonder Mould had to crank his amplifiers to 11 with the high-energy...

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Wednesday, 20 February 2019
Vinyl Vlog 371
COLUMN

A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the Finally Free LP by Daniel Romano. After first appearing in front of a hardcore band about fourteen years ago, Daniel Romano has taken personal delight in jumping from music genre to music genre with an impunity which proved to be incredibly infectious. From hardcore to folk to country to rock and innumerable hybrids of all those sounds, Romano has proven to have a golden touch almost as pure as David Bowie’s...

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Saturday, 16 February 2019
The Classics 033
COLUMN

A deeper look at the grooves pressed into Rancid’s self-titled 7” EP. At this stage of their career, it’s almost impossible to envision Rancid as anything other than the four-piece ska/punk powerhouse which has been responsible for songs like “Roots Radicals,” “Ruby Soho,” “Bloodclot,” “Fall Back Down” and “Last One To Die”; they are that punk-identified pop institution. At this point in their career, the band is inextricably linked with the sound of Tim Armstrong’s cracked vocal rasp, Matt...

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Wednesday, 13 February 2019
I Wanna Be Literated #200
BOOKS

What Went Wrong? The Nicaraguan Revolution: A Marxist Analysis by Dan La Botz Banana republics are the greatest. I don’t know what the appeal is, but there’s something cool about jungle/guerilla/revolutionary stories. Maybe it’s because anything can happen in South and Central America. The population is just fearless that way. I really should stop romanticizing the Sandinista revolution. But, then again, I’m a Clash fan, so what can I do? My initial interest in Nicaraguan history led me to Kinzer’s...

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Wednesday, 13 February 2019
I Wanna be Literated #199
BOOKS

Let’s Go (So We Can Get Back)Jeff Tweedy I came late to the Wilco game. Maybe it’s because I associated them with an old girlfriend who tried getting me into them. I was just too engaged in punk rock to really care. I remember us driving from San Diego to Portland Oregon and her playing Yankee Hotel Foxtrot in the car trying to impress me. Hoping it would get through to me. It wasn’t happening. On that trip she also...

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Thursday, 07 February 2019
Jon Spencer & the Hitmakers Live 02-01-19 @ Great Scott [Allston, MA]
LIVE MUSIC

Jon Spencer should be worshipped. There, I said it. But I think he should be worshipped in 30 years, because right now the man is too busy being an underappreciated living legend. How great is he? Well, when Marc Maron interviewed Steve Albini he specifically singled out Jon Spencer as a man who’s work ethic he admires. He knows exactly what he wants and knows how to get it. Another reason is that Jon Spencer is purely a music man....

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Sunday, 03 February 2019
Vinyl Vlog 370
COLUMN

Norm MacDonaldHitler’s Dog, Gossip and Trickery According to SNL alum, one of the questions Lorne Michaels asks you when you’re auditioning is which cast of the show did you grow up on. Who were your guys? Mine was the Will Ferrell/Cheri Oteri/Norm Macdonald cast, so he was my guy for Weekend Update and it became obvious very quickly that either you got Norm Macdonald or you didn’t. On the one hand, he never became a superstar like Molly Shannon or...

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Tuesday, 29 January 2019
Vinyl Vlog 369
COLUMN

A deeper look at the grooves pressed into the Bela Sessions 12” reissue by Bauhaus. In order to really appreciate just exactly how radical Bauhaus was in the early stages of their career, one must recognize what they did seemingly as a matter of course – how different it was from everything else, and how boldly the band did it from day one. The group’s first release, the “Bela Lugosi’s Dead” single, is an ideal illustration of that difference; in...

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Friday, 25 January 2019