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More babysue comic strips, News, Views and Perspectives & Notable New Releases
May 2023: News, Views and Perspectives
* Finally got my grubby paws on the latest Nazz CD box set Lost Masters & Demos. I've heard so much unearthed stuff by this band that I figured this would be more of the same. That is not the case here. Of all the releases that have been unearthed by this influential band, this is probably the most interesting. The first two CDs feature the exact sequence and sound that Todd Rundgren originally intended for the nixed double album Fungo Bat (which ended up being split into pieces and released as Nazz Nazz and Nazz III). The third CD presents newly found acetates of various recordings. Even if you've played this band's music into the ground, you will still get a lot of mileage out of this surprisingly entertaining and well-prepared release. If you seek perfect sound quality, this isn't for you. But if you seek genuinely inspired music that has stood the test of time...this one is a must have. * Although I'm kinda embarrassed that it's taken me so long, I'm glad I finally got turned onto the music of The Free Design. This British band's strange brand of artsy sunshine pop infused with exceptional vocal harmonies is a total turn on. Once again, the folks at Cherry Red Records are to be commended for making the band's entire recorded output available in the box set Butterflies Are Free: Original Recordings 1967 - 1972. Highly recommeded. * Northstar Artists and SRO Artists have merged under the Northstar Artists banner. Industry veteran Jeff Laramie of SRO Artists Inc. will bring SRO’s client roster, support staff and agent Bill Marquardt to Northstar to expand the combined company’s footprint in the contemporary music and performing arts world. * I was just turned onto a super cool new website/business called Wheek By Wheek at the domain WheekByWheek.com. 'Wheek' is the sound made by guinea pigs, doncha know... This cool website showcases unique small mammal enclosures made out of salvaged furniture. This form of art is a pure creative extension from a clever person who truly loves furry critters. Hats off to all the cool folks out there helping our wonderful animal friends live better lives. * French garage rock band Les Lullies have released the single/video "Zero Ambition" in advance of the release of their new album Mauvaise Foi which comes out May 19, 2023. * One of the most interesting musical artists of the twenty-first century is Rob Crow. A few years ago this exceptionally talented fellow was recording so much music under so many different band names that few could keep up with his wildly inventive output. It was amazing that any one individual could possibly create so much incredible music in such a short amount of time. Pinback was his best known band, but there were many others that were equally as cool and credible. Crow's music might best be described as stream-of-consciousness progressive pop or even math rock. Rob's music was far too heady and intelligent for most listeners. He's not as productive these days but that doesn't discount those past efforts. Over time this man's music has held up exceptionally well. My guess is that, over time, his recordings will be more widely recognized as some of the most brilliant and important ever created in the twenty-first century. * It's too bad Martin Mull switched from music to acting because decades ago he was a fantastic songwriter and performer. In his early shows he would tell the audience he was going to " go back to his roots"...and then proceed to play a blues song using a baby bottle for a slide on his guitar. The lyric that never fails to crack me up..."I felt so lowdown deep inside, I threw my drink across the lawn." Will Mull's self-titled debut album ever be reissued ? Hopefully one day. Fans of his music would welcome renewed attention directed toward wildly creative compositions like "Partly Marion, " "Living Above My Station" and "Ventriloquist Love." That last song contains some of the best lyrics ever written: "Ventriloquist love, it ain't such a groove. Whenever I kiss ya, darlin', your lips never move." Crazy over-the-top hilarious stuff that is timeless and fantastic. * The folks at Athens, Georgia-based Crashing Through Publicity always work with excellent artists. This holds true once again with their latest two bands/projects. The National Honor Society has just released the album To All The Distance Between Us on the always-pleasing Shelflife label. Totally cool music. Also out is a new 12" vinyl LP from The Rishis entitled August Moon on the Cloud Recordings label. This band includes many active members of the Elephant 6 Collective. The folks at Cloud always choose choice material for their truly tasty independent label. * I don't read books, but if I did I'd be sure to read Improvisations: Poetic Impressions From Contemporary Music by Roger Aplon. If you're not into books that spread across hundreds of pages, you'll be impressed to find that the books has just under 100 pages (!). * The band Electric Bird Noise always hits the center of my target. And this is true once again with the band's latest album entitled 8-10-22. This one has been released by the ultra-cool independent label Silber Records. * Everyone's favorite guitar instrumental band is back with another direct hit. Just out is Hamming It Down by The Weisstronauts (on the band's own Sool Recordings label). Seventeen well-conceived compositions recorded with true talent and style. * One of the very best twenty-first century situation comedies made to date is the Irish show Bridget & Eamon. Full of goofy insane humor and groovy characters, the show is perpetually entertaining and hilarious. Unpredictable zany stuff. I can't think of any other show that is similar to this bizarre comedy. Highly recommended. * A prototype of a personal computer has been produced for the first time. Although there will no doubt be many problems to work out, initial information about the machine suggests it may change the way the world operates. The manufacturing company's name is currently being withheld, but this information will be released shortly. Expect to see and hear a lot about personal computers in the coming months. * Children of famous musicians have pluses and minuses. The plus is that, if they choose it, they have an instant career path. The minus is that most are forever compared with their parent(s) and rarely live up to expectations. Robin Taylor Zander is a smart fellow who has taken the plus and transformed it into even more pluses. Zander has a new album out entitled The Distance and it immediately makes it clear that this young fellow is not riding on anyone's coattails. Some of his songs are strangely reminiscent of George Harrison. Robin has a great voice and writes genuinely creative music that will stand the test of time. Recorded at Old Soul Studios, The Distance is chock full of twenty-first century classics. * Connecticut's Fast River is a band with impressive songs and energy. Fast River is the brainchild of Corey Durkin who owns his own studio and has been releasing a new single every month since September 2021. His website is FastRiverMusic.com. Smart well-crafted songs that swerve and slide into a variety of different styles and sounds. * When will everyone realize that food production is a waste of time? There are so many problems associated with it. Production issues. Packaging issues. Contamination issues. Squabbles over ingredients. Squabbles over marketing. Problems with distribution. The solution is simple. Stop food production and the problems go away. It seems incredible that people never consider obvious simple ways to solve complex ongoing problems in our world. *
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May 2023 Notable New Releases
The Legends of Tomorrow - The Weather at World's End 1997-2022 (Talking Elephant Records). Ransom and the Subset - Perfect Crimes. The Courettes - Boom! Dynamite (Damaged Goods). John Howard - Kid In A Big World + The Original Demos (Kool Kat Musik). Tara MacLean - Sparrow. Chip & The Charge Ups - What Happened to the Boy Next Door? Kevin Foster - The Essence of Reminiscence. Nathaniel Sutton - A Brighter Sound EP. Debra Kaye - Ikarus Among the Stars (Parma Recordings). Stinking Lizaveta - Anthems and Fantoms (SRA Records). The Coastal Futures Conservatory; Matthew Burtner; EcoSono Ensemble - Soundscapes of Restoration (PARMA Recordings). Simon Mayor - Carolan: Fantasies on Themes by Turlough O'Carolan. Falcon! - Thank You Enough EP. Vanity Mirror - Puff. Fernando Greco - Vir a Ser (Brasil Calling). Basement Revolver - Embody Live (Auteur Research). Popes of Chillitown - Take A Picture (Criminal Records). One Adam One - Where Do I Begin (Die Trying Records). La Faute - Blue Girl Nice Day. Frenzy - Of Hoods and Masks (Fighter Records). Patrick & Daniels - Good Vibes: Live Off the Floor. Marc Jonson & Ramirez Exposure - Turning On The Century Vol. 2 (Happy Sparrow / Kool Kat Musik). Comet Gain - The Misfit Jukebox. Donkey Perfect - What Ticks At Six O'Clock (Mambo Mump). Fabulous Fabulous - Not That Great (Refusal Porkers). Mousy Gets What Mousy Wants - Meet the Mousy Gets What Mousy Wants (Sucker Porch). Soft Machine - Other Doors (MoonJune Records). Ceili Rain - Crash This Gate. Leanne Hoffman - The Text Collector. Davis & The Love - Live EP. Ryan Curtis - Ain't Ever Easy (American Standard Time Records). Legendary Ten Seconds - Astounding Songs. Sound Effects of Death and Horror (SEODAH) - Rossum: Experimental Radio.