Some Fantastic Discs that Have Graced My Player of Late:
First of all, I do still buy CDs. Dillinger Escape Plan with Mike Patton -- Irony Is a Dead Scene
I cannot will myself to reduce my entire music library to a bunch of invisible, anonymous, digital files on a hard drive. I can't, I WON'T!
I love the artwork, the liner notes, the tangible representation of the music. Plus, my CD collection has never crashed, but my hard drive probably will. I want the hard copies, dammit.
First of all, amen to that title. I am so tired of people hiding behind irony. Stand for something and stand for it loud, bitches! Being snarky and noncommittal is for poseurs.
Anyway, let's talk about how f*cking uncompromising this music is. Let's talk about what a restlessly imaginative talent Mike Patton is. You know what? Let's not talk about it, let's just listen. My favorite is the cover of Aphex Twin's "Come to Daddy." Music to destroy minds everywhere...
Laibach -- Sympathy for the Devil
Who remembers this album? I gotta thank my friend Joe for returning this one to my consciousness. I remember first hearing it around 1990 or 1991 and being right perplexed by these eight mischievous re-imaginings of the Rolling Stones staple. It sounds pretty dated now but good fun just the same.
Husker Du -- Zen Arcade
The power and the fury, how they bleed forth from this music.
Luscious Jackson -- In Search of Manny
This is my first time hearing this record. I've been a casual fan of Luscious Jackson over the years without ever digging in too deep; I remember "City Song" ruling my world in the fall of 1994 and I nursed a mild obsession with "Ladyfingers" a few years ago (I even covered it myself) but past that I can't say that I ever got fully bitten by the LJ bug.
But man, this record is a fun one! These four gals had something special in the beginning of their career -- a funky, urban, sexy, 70s-referencing milieu all its own, which is best evidenced here, on their debut ep.
Ciccone Youth -- The Whitey Album
Madonna covers, a little "Addicted to Love" karaoke with Kim Gordon -- what's not to like? Even Mike Watt's in there.
Siousxie -- Mantary
You may know Sioux from a little outfit called the Banshees. And if you're a mega-fan like me then you're thrilled to hear the woman sounding this engaged (and looking phenomenal) at age 50. Hell, I'd say this is the best thing Ms. Dallion has recorded since the late 80s. Inspiring.
Dug Pinnick -- Strum Sum Up
On a similar note. Many of you know who this guy is (but not nearly enough of you, I'm afraid). One of the greatest rock singers on the planet, Dug Pinnick has been transporting listeners to full-on hard rock nirvana as the lead singer/bassist for King's X for 20 years now. He's a legend. This, his first proper solo record, finds the man in fine, loose form and great voice, effortlessly rolling off disarmingly personal, simple lyrical sentiments over mighty, mighty riffs and grooves that combine Sly Stone and Sabbath in a way that only Dug can. Guest appearances by Alain and Natasha (Eleven, Queens of the Stone Age), Steve Stevens (Billy Idol) and others only sweeten the pot. Sounds like it was alot of fun to make.
Deerhoof -- Friend Opportunity
It's never a bad thing when you're at a total loss for words to describe something. I gotta get back to you on this one.
Minutemen -- Double Nickels on the Dime
I'm not gonna pretend to be a Minutemen expert. I'm not, and you may as well hear about them through some more informed scribe like Michael Azzerad. But I've been grooving to Double Nickels lately and what amazes me is how clear, focused and determined the band sound, and how much power emanates from their minimalism. Jamming econo indeed.
Living Colour -- Collideoscope
Sadly, many people only know Vernon Reid and Living Colour through their admittedly awesome and barrier-bashing smash hit "Cult of Personality" (now further immortalized by its inclusion in the almighty Guitar Hero canon). Truth is, the band have made a fistful of powerful rock records over the years (and have managed to collect a few Grammys in the process). Collideoscope, their latest, addresses a post-9/11 world gracefully, but with much anger and sadness. God bless them.
Blonde Redhead -- 23
This record's gotten a bit of flak I guess; not that critics matter a damn, but some of them (and some regular people too) think the veteran NYC trio have gotten preoccupied with a newfound flowery production style and lost some of their edge and immediacy. That may be true, but how can you argue against a record as gorgeous as this? Jeez, the band's been 100% uncompromising for ten years now. Let them do whatever the f*ck they want.
Patti Rothberg -- Candelabra Cadabra
Patti is the real deal, through and through. She is sly and clever while being heartfelt and truthful at all times. She knows how to channel all the best things in classic rock (Bowie, Zeppelin, Patti Smith) and new wave (Duran Duran, Missing Persons) without ever sounding derivative. It's pure Patti. I can't wait for the new album.
Dillinger Escape Plan with Mike Patton -- Irony Is a Dead Scene