Wednesday, May 31, 2017

NO-asis




When people began to spontaneously sing "Don't Look Back in Anger" in the wake of the terrorist attack at Manchester Arena, I had an inkling that Noel and Liam would give it a go:

Rumours have spread that iconic Manchester band Oasis will reform for the One Love gig in the city this weekend to benefit the victims of last week's terrorist attacks.

A tweet posted by Taboo, a member of The Black Eyed Peas, listed Oasis as one of the confirmed acts for Sunday's concert, sending fans wild.

If brothers Noel and Liam Gallagher do reform their band, it will mark their first gig together since 2009, and the end of a long running and bitter feud.  

I also had a distinct feeling that Johnny Marr and Morrissey would do something as well, either together or separately but not as The Smiths. I do not believe New Order will ever reconcile with Peter Hook, but who knows?

There are a number of reasons why this matters, but I can't think of them now. There will never be an "original 5" reunion of Oasis; they'd never let Tony McCarroll get behind the kit. I can see Bonehead on guitar, and that's about it. Gem Archer is still fully in the picture, so that complicates things. Really, it's Noel and Liam and that's enough of a reunion if it happens.

UPDATE - No Reunion.













Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Midnight Oil Are a Tremendous Live Band




Yes, I am still very, very pissed off that I cannot go see Midnight Oil this summer:

Midnight Oil selling out the modestly sized Vic was a foregone conclusion. But coming back from a 15-year break for a fiery set that felt like no time had passed at all? That was a welcome surprise.

Proselytizers place the Australian band in the pantheon of great live acts, and justifiably so, but it takes a certain sense of pride for a reunited group not just to coast on its reputation but push itself like it still has something to prove, and the world to change. As frontman Peter Garrett noted, the band's pointedly politically minded songs — many delivered with the desperate immediacy of a Molotov cocktail — remain as timely as ever.

Beginning with the menacing "Outside World" and continuing with the interlocking riffs and rollicking drum fills of the righteous "Only the Strong," the group (whose recent set lists have been impressively varied) proceeded to play its 1982 album "10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1" in its entirety, and for those more familiar with Midnight Oil's subsequent work, the almost alien art-rock might have come off a little jarring had the tricky time signatures and weird arrangements not been held together by the band's inventive, impeccable musicianship.

But when the band shifted gears to play more acoustically driven material such as "The Dead Heart" and "Beds Are Burning," both from its hugely successful 1987 album "Diesel and Dust," Midnight Oil demonstrated how even more considered songcraft could course with barely contained energy. Later, when the group blazed through "Dreamworld" and "Sometimes" from that same album, you could discern the same passion and penchant for innovation that marked the band's early years, more refined but no less effective.

Midnight Oil can blow people away live and you do not want to follow them onstage. They have a catalog that will surprise you and the political immediacy of their songs has never dissipated. When they were singing about Reagan and Bush, they might as well have been singing about Trump. They are the band that America needs to hear right now, and how fitting is it that they are on the road at the same time as U2 in a country that has lost its collective mind?













Tuesday, May 16, 2017

The Jesus and Mary Chain Appeared on Stephen Colbert




This is pretty impressive. For the Jesus and Mary Chain to appear on a major television show, you would have to assume that there's a pretty good public relations push behind the band. This is something that is getting harder and harder to find nowadays because music labels aren't really pushing guitar rock.

I'm going to track down video of this when it becomes available. In the old days, the Reid brothers would show up drunk, trash the place, turn in a diffident performance, and slink away with their rock and roll integrity in place. They were banned from the BBC for years. They plowed their way through shows in fifteen minutes, cursed everyone, and walked off. But they did come to realize that even that was not quite the way to do things. They changed and evolved. That's why I like this new record so much--there's the snarling attitude and there's that essential guitar sound, but it's in a better place.

Now, they show up and do the real rock and roll thing--play like they're on fire and give people what they want. There's a little bit of both in rock and roll--not giving a shit sometimes is exciting to watch, but a solid performance doesn't hurt, either.

Times, they have a-changed.













Monday, May 15, 2017

Avril Lavigne is Not Dead You Jerks




It's as if people can't evolve, change or grow anymore:

the rumour that the real Avril Lavigne is dead and that has been replaced by an imposter keeps resurfacing. It’s the conspiracy that won’t quit, and to mark the 15th anniversary of her debut single ‘Complicated’, those claims have resurfaced.

One mystery-busting Brazilian blog has compiled all of the ‘evidence’ through the years and reckons it has definitive proof that the punky pop star is in fact dead, and the Avril Lavigne who now stalks the earth is nothing but a fake. Here are the main points of the argument:

Insert your own Nickelback joke here, and, while you're at it, read the whole article. Someone has way too much time on their hands.













Monday, May 8, 2017

Roger Waters Deja Vu




Wow.

Now that's a goddamned song.

Roger Waters is getting ready to put out his first new album since Amused to Death. This new album is called Is This the Life We Really Want. If it's anything like this, then it will be an amazing statement about the times in which we live.













Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Radiohead Reissue OK Computer




Radiohead have reissued OK Computer, and that's a good thing. This is where Radiohead decided to start abandoning the three guitar format and use dissonance and jittery noise to enhance their songs.

You really can't fault them for reissuing their early albums. This is not an attempt to shake some change out of the pockets of whatever fans are left. These are historical documents, and while people will tell you that this was Radiohead at their peak, I disagree. I think they did a lot better on The Bends and that one will always be my favorite. It comes down to having more guitar and less of Jonny Greenwood's forays into densely layered chords and ambient noise. 

OK Computer arrived with a lot of fanfare in the summer of 1997 and a lot of hype that turned out to be justified. But would you believe me if I told you that it has never really sold a lot of copies? 1.5 million in Britain and 2 million in the United States. These are not substantial numbers when compared to many of their contemporaries from that same year (Oasis have sold three times as many copies of (What's the Story) Morning Glory. The Verve have sold over 3.2 million copies of Urban Hymns and The Corrs have sold nearly twice as many copies of Talk on Corners). Radiohead do not have an album that has cracked the top 60 sellers in Britain, but they are a commercial force to be reckoned with. When they tour, they do very well.

They are that rare British band that are much bigger in America than England. Take that Britpop!

This album has fallen out of rotation for me. I do like some of the songs, but there's a whole raft of Radiohead songs that I enjoy quite a bit more. I like Bodysnatchers and There, There from the later period and I think they are no where near done as a band if they choose to keep making music. Of everyone who ever went up against them, Radiohead come away with the artistic vision intact. 

Really, though, I was hoping to see the band release their live shows, similar to what Pearl Jam and Phish have done in the past. Radiohead put out great albums, but their live shows are amazing. I don't think there is a real "full concert" Radiohead album out there, and if I'm wrong on that, please let me know. There are so many fantastic bootlegs, festival appearances, and other recordings out there, so I feel comfortable saying that, in the future, the band needs to release more of their live catalog in a remastered format.