Friday, November 9, 2012

Song of the Week #220

Suddenly there is a long list of particularly fab and groovy musicians planning to grace our antipodean shores. 2013 sees Iggy Pop, Elvis Costello, Metallica, Dropkick Murphys, Neil Young, The Darkness, Presidents of the USA, Dinosaur Jr., Robert Plant, Bob Mould, Bonnie Raitt, Roger Hodgson, Slayer, Elvis Costello,  Anthrax, Mavis Staples, Alabama Shakes and Wilco are all coming. That’s not bad! And then of course there’s Black Sabbath – wow! It’s the Sab’s first tour down here since 1974. And that list doesn’t even include top shelf local acts like The Mark of Cain, Paul Kelly and Neil Fin. But wait, there’s more…AC/DC…! I hope I can get some tickets to them this time around. I really want to take Angus to the gig. I’m sure some of you can work out why.

Pianoman H, my CD pusher man, gave me a couple of CDs to listen to recently. I must admit that he surprised me with Ace Frehely’s album, “Anomaly”. You all remember Ace right? He was the lead guitarist for KISS from ’73 – ’82 and then again from ’96-’02. You can believe who you like about the infighting in KISS but the fact remains that their seminal work was recorded and played live with Ace (and Peter Criss). But I digress. Ace’s album, from 2009, was his first solo release in 10 years. I expected it to be pretty average and boy was I wrong. It’s more KISS than KISS is these days – a solid rock ‘n’ roll effort which has kept me returning to it over and over.

Ace Frehely – Outer Space -

I’ll talk more about the new KISS album, “Monster”, another time but after a couple of listens I am far from impressed.

Alabama Shakes have had an airing here before. I heard their new single on the radio yesterday and I have no idea why I haven’t bought their album yet. I hold out a faint hope that their Australian tour dates will include the national capital. My goodness their singer has a great voice!! If you like soul music or Creedence style stuff then give this a spin.

Alabama Shakes – I Found You -

This next song worked its way into my psyche because it was used on a TV advertisement when I was a kid. I got a huge shock when years later I was told to learn it for a band I was in. It’s got a good groove and was a lot of fun to play. Probably a hangover song too!

Jimmy Barnes – Daylight -

In what was big news for me, a double CD of Armoured Angel remastered demos has been released. It’s called “Hymns of Hate” and I’ve only just ordered a copy. If you’ve heard me wax lyrical about this band before then I apologise in advance! They were a Canberra band who came damned close to making it very big. While their style of brutal heavy metal certainly isn’t for everyone, in 1991 it certainly made me sit up and take notice. I was fortunate enough to be friends with DJ DJ (and I still am!) who was involved with the band taking photographs among other things. We saw them on quite a number of occasions here in Canberra as well as in Sydney and Melbourne. Considering their lyrical material and image people are often surprised that  the guys in the band were always more than friendly towards me and their fans. I’ve had a couple of these demos on cassette for years and I’m glad they’re getting a CD release. I don’t know the full story of why the band folded but I think it’s a real shame. I’ll also never forget people’s faces (especially sound guys) when they realised that there were just three guys making all that noise and the only vocal microphone went to the drummer. I remember when they split that some of their Marshall speaker boxes were for sale. They were probably well and truly worn out but I still kick myself for not picking one up!

Armoured Angel – Enigmatize -

If that was way too heavy for you, and I recognize that for most listeners that may be the case, then this next track may appeal. I was at my Dad’s place last weekend in Geelong. He’s a keen music fan and guitar player – just in case you’re wondering where I got it from! He played me a CD by a Scottish group called Breabach. If I’m correct then I think that the word breabach refers to a way of transcribing pipe music. Anyway, the CD is great and there’s even a song inspired by Dr. Who on it!  This is an older track – YouTube hasn’t caught up yet!

Breabach – Greenfields -

I guess I’ve shied away from a lot of more personal insights in favour of music for a few weeks now. Probably because I’ve been a bit inclined to feel sorry for myself. I guess I’ve got a lot of what people would refer to as “first world problems” to deal with. However, I’m taking steps to get out of the funk I’m in and back into the kind of funk that James Brown would approve of. A new diet for health reasons and a busted foot really have got me down. The diet, which will be professionally reviewed very shortly, is such that my clothes are loose and I’m ready to use a new belt loop that’s never been bothered before. And it isn’t like I had weight to lose. The foot means I can’t run and that is doing my head in. The upside is that my mountain bike is getting a pounding and I’m building a heap of fitness and endurance there. This video says it all…but like I said, watch this space as I get myself sorted out!

Queen – I’m Going Slightly Mad -

In breaking news, congratulations to Granny Annie on the birth of a beautiful granddaughter!!

Have a great weekend.

DJ Rob

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