Thursday, November 26, 2009

Tops for 2009



My Top Ten for albums of 2009 have been submitted to the North Shore News - many thanks to audiophile John Goodman. I have given him the caveat audiens for my picks - being far more folk/roots and of course, singer-songwriter stuff. No Lady GaGa (gag-gah) from me. How vile. This is the year of really geeky looking guy bands. And a lot of Canadians.

10: Morrissey - Years of Refusal


9: Andrew Bird - Noble Beast


8: Wilco - Wilco


7: Grizzly Bear - Veckatimest


6: Bruce Cockburn - Slice O' Life


5: Joel Plaskett - Three


4: The Great Lake Swimmers - Lost Channels


3: Pete Yorn & Scarlett Johansson - Break Up




2: Phoenix - Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix


and my number one pick for 2009....

1: Neko Case - Middle Cyclone *** A highlight of the year and an obvious highlight to her recording career. Neko Case is outstanding in her vocal talent and this album is a must have by anyone's standards!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Susan Boyle's first single drags em away


Susan Boyle's first single will be an amazing cover of Rolling Stones "Wild Horses". Although I love the Sundays' rendition of the song, this is something so beautiful, I can see that Boyle's album entitled "I Dreamed a Dream", will set new records in the stratosphere. It's release isn't due until November and will be offered on Amazon.

Monday, August 03, 2009

Off the beaten down path of Mainstream, get yourself some Andrew Bird

Chicago Instrumentalist, Andrew Bird, does his rare vocal appearance on this single "Imitosis", from the album Armchair Apocrypha. Great tune, intriguing video.



he's keeping busy
yeah he's bleeding stones
with his machinations and his palindromes
it was anything but hear the voice
that says that we're all basically alone

poor Professor Pynchon had only good intentions
when he put his Bunsen burners all away
and turning to a playground in a Petri dish
where single cells would swing their fists
at anything that looks like easy prey
in this nature show that rages every day
it was then he heard his intuition say

we were all basically alone
and despite what all his studies had shown
that what's mistaken for closeness
is just a case of mitosis
and why do some show no mercy
while others are painfully shy
tell me doctor can you quantify
he just wants to know the reason why

why do they congregate in groups of four
scatter like a billion spores
and let the wind just carry them away
hows can kids be so mean
our famous doctor tried to glean
as he went home at the end of the day
in this nature show that rages every day
it was then he heard his intuition say

we were all basically alone
despite what all his studies had shown
that what's mistaken for closeness
is just a case of mitosis
sure fatal doses of malcontent through osmosis
and why do some show no mercy
while others are painfully shy
tell me doctor, can you quantify?
the reason why

Monday, May 18, 2009

Birthday Blessings to Morrissey


Artist: Morrissey
Album: Years Of Refusal
Label: Lost Highway (US), Decca/Polydor (UK)
Rating: 8 of 10

It’s hard to believe Morrissey turns 50 on May 22nd, but luckily he never ceases to be the embodiment of eccentricity, an enigmatic oddball to revere. He fiercely continues to give mainstream pop the cold shoulder (and perhaps rightly so), and is no more acclimatized to the pop music scene than he was twenty-three years ago when he emerged as Britain’s beloved outsider with his 1980’s fĂȘted band, The Smiths.

Never lacking of critics, Morrissey has been countering back with successful solo albums and touring to sold-out shows from L.A. to his birthplace of Manchester, England since 1988. His latest rebuttal, Years of Refusal, seemingly reflects the artist’s acceptance of a life-sentence of sour discontentment. Below its 12-track listing, the album’s subscript reads in lower cased italics “produced by jerry finn, recorded in los angeles, play very loud” and compelling proves that age hasn’t diffused Morrissey’s perspective nor his ability to deliver vocal potency. “It’s Not Your Birthday Anymore” hallmarks his sublime falsetto and track two, “Mama Lay Softly on the Riverbed”, is lushly layered and enjoyable despite its somewhat disturbing lyrics. The opener, “Something is Squeezing My Skull” scowls with energetic ferocity, stating the big sound theme. Collaboration from long-time band mate Boz Boorer is evident as is punk-pop producer, Jerry Finn’s contribution, which was tragically the 39-year-old’s last effort, having succumbed to a brain hemorrhage only weeks after finalizing the Morrissey recording. A full-bodied intensity flares through to the finale, bonus track, “Shame Is The Name”. Undisputedly, melancholy and wry lyricism, not to mention a notorious quaff, have served Morrissey well and he deserves a very happy birthday.

- Stephanie Kiernan

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Crossing A Canyon - 54-40 let me disappear and try again...

LOVE this song...



And the day is long
And the bridge is gone
And the river's washed away
The road I'm on
Only road I know

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

This Girl needs some Beatles






Despite the fact that The Beatles and Apple Macintosh have more money than God, they continue to quibble over iTunes and name rights and copy rights of "Apple". Therefore, when importing your Beatles' CD's into your iMac iTunes, you don't get the automatic artwork. Tonight I pulled up The Beatles.com and downloaded all the album artwork so I can upload the images for my jukebox display. Now things look way better.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Pete Yorn's upcoming album can't come soon enough

But neither can Matthew Good's new studio recording "Vancouver". Pete has done a duet/vocals with him on the album. This is quite exciting.



New one called "Shotgun" - you can upload it on Facebook and improve your iLike profile. Hmmm, I likey. I likey alot.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Richard Hawley



Yesterday morning sitting in Starbucks on Robson awaiting Lianne's arrival so we could attend the Geist writers workshop, a song came on that caught my attention. An acoustic remake of Canadian legend Gordon Lightfoot's Early Morning Rain. I casually inquired what CD was playing and found the hard copy at the front counter. It was a Starbucks' compilation entitled "Sweetheart". It was also 24 quid - I wasn't in the mood to pay that, but I made my mental note.

This song is an oldie - the guy that re-recorded it isn't. Richard Hawley is a Brit - a Northerner, who was born in January 1967. From his vintage voice one would think he was 40 years old recording in 1967. Richard Hawley is a throwback and way cool. His voice is velvet, hitting that part of the past that is late 1960's and early 1970's. Check out this LINK and see if you think he could be of Glen Campbell's vintage. He's fabulous.

Proof? Here is his cover of "Born Under A Bad Sign" - a song made famous by a chap named Albert King but could just as easily been sung by Nancy Sinatra. This video is fantastic and so is our retro Richard Hawley.





The Starbucks "Sweetheart" Compilation was released January 30th. Here is it's line up of mellowed out covers. Jem's cover of Coldplay's Yellow is actually really well done.

01. Death Cab For Cutie - "Love Song" (Cure cover)
02. Katy Perry - "Black And Gold" (Sam Sparro cover)
03. DeVotchKa - "Hot Burrito #1 (I'm Your Toy)" (Flying Burrito Brothers cover)
04. Department Of Eagles - "Love Me" (Elvis Presley cover)
05. Jessica Lea Mayfield - "Words Of Love" (Buddy Holly cover)
06. Ben Bridwell - "Your Love Is Forever" (George Harrison cover)
07. Kate Tucker - "I'm On Fire" (Bruce Springsteen cover)
08. Rogue Wave - "Maps" (Yeah Yeah Yeahs cover)
09. A.C. Newman - "Take On Me" (a-ha cover)
10. Jem - "Yellow" (Coldplay cover)
11. Richard Hawley - "Early Morning Rain" (Gordon Lightfoot cover)
12. Daniel Martin Moore - "I Hear Music" (Billie Holiday cover)
13. She & Him - "I Put A Spell On You" (Screamin' Jay Hawkins cover)
14. Lila Downs - "My One And Only Love" (Frank Sinatra cover)

Saturday, February 21, 2009

It's all fire and brimstone baby...

Maynard Keenan, lead singer of Tool, has a side project called Puscifer. His new song is The Mission featuring vocals of actress Mila Jovovich.  I am addicted to this song. I dare you not to love it as well.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

What A Tease



Morrissey's upcoming solo album, Years of Refusal, features interesting inner sleeve artwork. The ninth solo studio recording for Moz will be released in the UK February 16, 2009. As usual, he has fun with his song titles....

1. 'Something Is Squeezing My Skull'
2. 'Mama Lay Softly On The Riverbed'
3. 'Black Cloud'
4. 'I'm Throwing My Arms Around Paris'
5. 'All You Need Is Me'
6. 'When Last I Spoke To Carol'
7. 'That's How People Grow Up'
8. 'One Day Goodbye Will Be Farewell'
9. 'It's Not Your Birthday Anymore'
10. 'You Were Good In Your Time'
11. 'Sorry Doesn't Help'
12. 'I'm OK By Myself'

And if that isn't enough NEWS, there is also his interview with Russell Brand. So you MUST purchase the deluxe DVD edition of Years of Refusal in order to treat yourself to the full 20 minute interview, entitled "Wrestle With Russell".
God I love the intrawebs.