Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Come On Bring A Friend! Adventure Time: Come Along With Me

March 21, 2021

You may or may not have watched ‘Adventure Time,’ either the original series on Cartoon Network and Hulu, or the spinoff on HBOMax.

You should. You don’t need to be a child, or in an altered state to enjoy it.

I’m way behind the show, near the end of the second season, but it’s a delightful chillout, featuring quirky characters, deceptively cute art design and delightful music.. both instrumental and with lyrics. This album features mostly instrumentals.. with the exception of a cover of the opening and closing credit songs. The closer- ‘Island Song’ in all it’s simplicity, is one of my many favorite songs. Playing it invites thoughts of spring, and escape from whatever stress you may be fleeing or not yet able to flee.

There’s a great video of the song that kind spoils the show.. so, let’s just hear the song.

There are multiple albums of songs from the show, which I might binge buy at a later time. Do you need to buy this album if you aren’t a fan of the show? Maybe not, but regardless of whether you watch the adventures of Jake The Dog and Finn The Human, this is an enjoyable, atmospheric album.

Oh, and watch the show. You’re welcome.

Artist: Various
Album: Adventure Time: Come Along with Me (Music from the Original TV Series)
Year: 2018
Date Listened in Tour: 3/2/21
Rating: ****
Best Songs: Island Song


March 2, 2021


Well, after another absence, prolonged not by distance, since, well, my computer was right behind me for like 3-4 MONTHS I WAS ON FURLOUGH… I’m back.


Ok… so, priorities.

  1. EUROVISION 2021. Let’s see if they actually air it so I can see the damn thing in the US before 2023.
  2. THE GRAND TOUR OF MY MUSIC COLLECTION: I finished a proper play through a while back, but there are new albums (physical and digital) and I got really bogged down by not wanting to write about how I don’t feel Tori Amos as much as I used to .. (STILL THE CASE) but… we must move on.
  3. Just more stuff than I want to put on Facebook, because long form rants don’t look good there.

So, back to it. We’ll see how it goes. ONWARDS!!!

Wait… Bradley Cooper Is Winning Me Over? The Hell…

April 28, 2019

So… finally back in the blogging game. Years of not taking enough time to sit and write, listening topodcasts, and a couple of days updating my spreadsheet, and I am back.


Actually, no. Backstreet Boys sucked. I don’t have any ironic joy of them, I will not blog them. Don’t worry. You are safe. I’m still listening to podcasts.. Apocalist Book Club is a fun one when I’m not catching up on MSNBC casts or Pod Save America. BUT BACK TO FAHKING MUSIC!

I’ve mentioned my dismay about writing about Tori Amos…. an amazing artist who I just don’t feel as much as I used to… but, I caught a break. Because, between now and then, I’ve bought a couple discs that push her back in the queue.

So onto the 2018 OST for ‘A Star Is Born.’

Now, I was slightly skeptical about the movie. Bradely Cooper was an actor who just got on my nerve on a regular basis… he was great as Rocket Racoon and the skeezy FBI Agent in ‘American Hustle,’ but mostly I just wanted to slap his character.  His character in ‘Silver Lining Playbook’ was a deeply psychotic serial abuser who needed to be locked away instead of given dance shoes. But then I saw he was working with Gaga, and heard how much work he was doing on the production… I was interested. Plus, my wife is a huge fan of the “Star Is Born” movies, so there was no way we weren’t going to see it.

And then that first trailer, the first time I heard Gaga as Ally rip into the yodel/holler from ‘Shallow’… that was a moment.


I dug it… the impressionistic/Hong Kong feel, the degree to which Cooper was willing to degrade Maines to let Ally shine as a star… the weird jump of her going from Americana queen too well… Lady Gaga was a little odd… it grabbed me. The music itself… I really enjoyed it. It’s been everywhere… every Starbucks and supermarket…  but here’s one more taste incase you ran away screaming before trying another song.


There are better OST’s, better individual songs, and yes… Bradely Cooper is totally indulging his every whim on this whole shebang. That being said… he’s generous to other artists and worked to create a decently fun album. It get’s four overly emotional stars, and I don’t care if you judge me.

You don’t need to buy this album. Your collection will be complete without it. But, try more than just the two songs you heard while waiting for a frappe or the leg machine at the gym. You’ll be happy you did.

Artist: Original Soundtrack
Album: A Star Is Born
Year: 2018
Date Listened in Tour: 12/25/18
Rating: ****
Best Songs: ‘’Shallow’, ‘Always Remember Us This Way’

Grand Tour Drinking Game Score: Soundtrack (1) + Cover (1) + Live Performances (1) Drink + DIALOG SNIPPETS!!! (1)… Don’t be like Jackson Maine and chug. Enjoy your drinks over the course of the cd like a civilized drunkard.


October 30, 2015

David O’Russell is a director who makes one amazing movie, then one or two that make me wish he never took a screen writing class. “Silver Linings Playbook” was a domestic violence enabling, mental illness patronizing piece of crap that I have yet to forgive him for. “American Hustle” was brilliant, an evocation of the ‘70’s, the fall of Atlantic City and the joys of ABSCAM. Great characters, pacing… you get the picture.

The OST is equally up-there. It capture the odd moment of the stillborn ‘70’s… when culture started to slide backwards into nostalgia, disco wasn’t more than an excuse to dance badly, and rock hadn’t given birth to punk, new wave and everything new. It’s not there wasn’t good music.. things were kind of stagnating. Or, the culture was a blister about to burst. The soundtrack catches that nicely.

Let’s check out this ELO homage to the Beatles: ‘10538 Overture.’

Moving on, don’t leave before trying Harold Melvin and The Bluenotes’ ‘Don’t Leave Me This Way.’ Skip through the add, and watch these guys have a blast singing the song they started, which everyone has covered. Not just plot appropriate, but also evocative of the strange cultural mix of the time. Disco? Rock? Past? Future? WHO KNOWS?!?!

Why isn’t five stars then? Well, while there are a lot of good songs, even some great ones, the kitsch/stagnation factor kind of hurts it. Compare it to a similarly ’70’s-tastic OST- ‘Guardians Of The Galaxy- Mix Tape Vol.’ Even though GOTG is more of a greatest hits compilation, it has a bubblyness that pulls you along.

Buy this album? Absolutely. Interesting, deep cuts, good choices, nice flow. Only warning- this is a gateway drug to more Electric Light Orchestra. Be warned.

This album is a good 3 drinks on the Grand Tour Drinking Game. Take your time, sip and enjoy. And occasionally sputter at the choices.

Artist: Original Soundtrack
Album: American Hustle
Year: 2013
Date Listened in Tour: 2/4/14
Rating: ****
Best Songs: ‘10538 Overture,’’Don’t Leave Me This Way.’

Grand Tour Drinking Game Score: Soundtrack (1) + Foreign Language Cover of ‘White Rabbit’ (2) =3

What’s The Hi-Lo on American Hi-Fi?

October 19, 2015

If you were watching MTV in 2001, you likely caught a very particular video, set in the ’80s. It was an homage to the cult classic film ‘Heavy Metal Parking Lot.’ And it caught your attention. The lyrics featured a self-pitying nice guy making a good point about why the girl of his dream was with the biggest douche ever.

The band.. was American Hi-Fi, one of a raft of a guitar pop bands coming out at the turn of the century. Post grunge, owing a nod to Weezer, not quite  sounding like the New York New Wave of The Strokes. I grabbed their CD at low price of $9.99 at the Best Buy, and barely listened to it .

Dipping back in, I can see why I didn’t follow take up the cause.

This is an ok alubum, with some good songs, but doesn’t really stand out. Each song on the disc sounds a little like a song from another bigger band, as opposed to building to a stand out album from one stand out band.

If you have this disc, listen to it again. See what it does for you. If you don’t, I wouldn’t stress over it. But you could do worse.

I’m including the strings heavy, Beatles/Oasis-ish “Another Perfect Day” because Patton Oswalt plays a down on his luck corn dog.

See? I didn’t make that up.

Artist: American Hi-Fi

Album: Radioactive
Year: 2001
Date Listened in Tour: 7/26/08
Rating: ***
Best Songs: “Flavor Of The Weak,” “A Bigger Mood”

Sharon’s Back. To Campaign for the Boss

April 22, 2015

American Bands-Who are the best?

Sharon Gerber returns for one last swing. This one is for Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band.

Describing something as esoteric as a live performance can be difficult, but I’ll try.  It’s not just technical proficiency, because you have that in hundreds of hobby bar bands wherever you go that get ignored in favor of conversation.  And it’s not just energy, because lots of shitty bands have that and nothing else. It’s more than just a combination of the two.  There’s something that needs to happen on top of that – something that makes you shush your friends, put down your beer, and turn towards the stage.  And more than that, it makes you walk up to the merch table to buy an album, or to at least find out where they’ll be next.   It might be a hearty drumbeat or bass that makes you tap in unison.  It…

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James Gerber does the impossible?

April 20, 2015

American Bands-Who are the best?

James aka @sailorboyj is the spirit of the internet. He’s a joking, thoughtful, humorous, jocular…so many adjectives describe the man. So I asked him to talk about what I believe to be the most overrated band of the 60s. If anyone can pull it off, he can. James opens The Doors of Perception.

The Doors.

“Insert Standard Aldous Huxley Quote Here”

First off, The Doors come with baggage. To be fair, many bands, I will handcuff them to their baggage. Tie them to their suitcases, and push them off a bridge. But the Doors… nah. The Doors are so much more than baggage and an Oliver Stone “not quite historical film.”

Let’s address the baggage. Mostly…Jim Morrison’s. Yes… he committed the unpardonable act of trying to put on Native American drag. I’m sure Bob Dylan never got over that. Yes, he followed the path of artists like Rimbaud, Dylan Thomas…

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My favorite music writer talks about two of my favorite bands.

April 17, 2015

American Bands-Who are the best?

Eric Koslofsky does an amazing music podcast called the Old Time Modern Mixtape Hour, where he plays new favorites and old ones, and chats in between tracks. We asked him to write about several bands. Today he expounds about the Replacements and the Ramones.

The Ramones

The first I ever heard of the Ramones, it was my pops, who said “NOISE”.  And not in a good way. For full context, he also said Billy Joel was “NOISE” and that Billy Joel was “hard rock”. In hindsight, I realized he had only heard of the Ramones, not actually heard them (witness when I played “Needles and Pins” and he loved it as much as I did).

But that was enough for me to avoid them in my youth. And ignore punk in general. Noise. Meanness. Disrespect towards nice people. Spitting. But as I wound my teenage way backwards from the latest…

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Lisa Gets Arty.

April 17, 2015

American Bands-Who are the best?

Lisa Chamoff, AKA @lchamoff or IndieUntangled in her professional life, is a music aficionado like Seth and myself, but in a different vein. Lisa asked us if she could write about the Velvet Underground, and here it is.

It was 1996 and I was a Beatles- and Britpop-obsessed teenager when some random guy started Instant Messaging me to talk about music and literature. In this ancient, pre-MySpace and Facebook era, you crammed the Interests section of your AOL profile with all the bands you listened to in an effort to look cool and find like-minded souls to chat with.

While I’m assuming Jeff the University of Maryland graduate and English major was looking for more than a friendly conversation with someone who he eventually learned was a 16-year-old girl, he had more of an impact on me than he’ll probably ever know.  At one point, Jeff asked if I’d ever…

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Patrice talks about her favorite band. At least I think it is!

April 17, 2015

American Bands-Who are the best?

Patrice Bartell writes for us, and it’s a blessing. She’s a passionate fan of so many bands. We asked her to expound on her favorite band, possibly of all time!

On R.E.M.

I was around seven or eight years old when, while watching a music video show on network TV, the video for “The One I Love” came on. My siblings, who rarely agreed on anything musical (Aerosmith, I think, was the only band at that point they could agree they both liked), both piped up, “Hey, it’s that new band from Georgia we’ve been hearing about! They’re pretty good.”1 So, I watched the video and walked away with one question on my mind: “Where’s the singer?”

See, R.E.M. is nothing else if not a band that set up unusual rules for itself to follow, many of which it would break later on in the future. They for a time didn’t…

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