I've just looked in my notebook at my list of music to listen to and consider for this week and I've only written two entries. I guess they'll get an airing then! Bear with me as the rest I'm just making up as I go along.
The radio was playing a feature all about the music of the band Queens of the Stone Age yesterday. I've never been a huge fan but what hit me was how many of the tracks I was very familiar with and how good they were. I really must spend some time with their back catalogue. I really liked, and still do, the band Kyuss who became QOTSA. I was lucky enough to see them opening for Metallica in Sydney in March 1993. I guess QOTSA are closer to a traditional rock band than Kyuss who had a very stoner, doom laden sound. Whatever the case, both are very worth considering as a listening project. Josh Homme has been in nearly as many awesome bands as Chris Slade or Dave Grohl!
Kyuss - Green Machine - https://youtu.be/R-MSfd2S7lo
Queens of the Stone Age - Misfit Love (live) - https://youtu.be/hH4Gt467T7E
I've been on the lookout for an octave pedal for my guitar rig for a little while. In essence what it does is add an extra layer of sound, either an octave up, or an octave down, to the sound. Hendrix is probably the most famous user of this effect but there are plenty of other examples. The search is proving interesting with way too many options to choose from and a huge price range to deal with from, "so cheap it must be dodgy", right up to, "goodness gracious, that costs more than all my other pedals combined". I'll find something one day but for now I'm watching and listening to way too many gear demonstrations on YouTube.
I wrote something earlier in the week about one of my favourite bands. Feel free to peruse my ramblings here. Here's a tune from the group in question.
Baby Animals - Early Warning (live) - https://youtu.be/FZKh8XXvTz4
The band is working up to a rather special live show. As a result I had some fun during the week just sitting with some band members and running through a few tunes. It's a good feeling to play tunes that have been absent from our repertoire for a while. And even more fun simply going through them at lounge room level volume. Playing with the dynamics of a song is great and I'm lucky to have talented and understanding co-collaborators. We hadn't played this one for a while and I really enjoyed it...
Jason Isbell - Cover Me Up (live) - https://youtu.be/NaUCDqWzy1k
This is just a cool song that I hadn't heard in a while. It's got something for everyone. Groovy vocals, great bass line, brass and a ripping guitar solo.
Blondie - Rapture - https://youtu.be/6FM9M2_WP8g
Angus was off in Sydney this week seeing a rapper with a funny name and questionable hair (his words, not mine). Rap got really dumb somewhere along the way. It used to be hard hitting and fun all at the same time. These days, much of it is like the reality TV version of the worst thing you can think of ; low rent and lower than the lowest common denominator. Let's remember the really good stuff and hope that more young MCs and rappers do as well.
Run DMC - My Adidas - https://youtu.be/JNua1lFDuDI
Ice-T - I'm Your Pusher - https://youtu.be/_nODi6OECzs
I read this week that there is a TV mini-series coming soon about the life and times of Australian rock legends, The Easybeats. As well as this is a national concert tour that seems to feature most of the same lineup that I saw paying tribute to The Beatles White Album. If you're not familiar with The Easybeats and their place in rock music history then I encourage you to have a listen to the following tracks. You won't be "sorry".
The Easybeats - I'll Make You Happy - https://youtu.be/2YM8qOKUmwA
A couple of weeks ago I played a song by Songhoy Blues, a group from Mali. Imagine my surprise when, at the record store I spotted their album! I couldn't wait to get home and have a listen and I wasn't disappointed. If you think you might fancy an insistent mix of desert reggae, Hendrix style guitars, brass and funk then you need this record. This is definitely one of the musical highlights of 2017 thus far in my opinion.
Songhoy Blues - Bamako - https://youtu.be/xBujXJVBxNU
Look, I understand a musician needing to make a living, but some of the use of classic tracks behind advertising is getting beyond a joke. Let's remember Ronnie James Dio for his great songs rather than for in an ad for cars.
More guitar practice shall now occur....after a bike ride and a listen to Sgt Peppers in 5.1 surround sound; I will report back on if it's any good!
I'll leave you with something released 30 years ago this week. Rock on!
Guns N' Roses - Welcome to the Jungle - https://youtu.be/o1tj2zJ2Wvg
See you all later,
Some songs definitely sound better in German...like this