Category Archives: turntable

don’t stop thinkin’ about tomorrow

In times of stress, we all have our vices we turn to. Mine include Snyder’s of Hanover Honey Mustard and Onion Pretzel bites (the “crack pretzels”), oversized flannel shirts I tend to wear on a daily basis, expensive cappuccinos from Think Coffee, watching The Graduate, and Fleetwood Mac. Yes, that’s right. Most people associate Fleetwood Mac with flowy skirts and that classic rock station the grocery store likes to play. And yes, some of their later stuff is a little bit of an epic fail. But 1977’s Rumours is a perfect piece of blues-inflected rock and roll wonder. Come on, any album where everyone in the band is writing about everyone else in the band’s failed relationships is bound to have some good stuff on it.

you see your gypsy....

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I Love Empire Records

recordstoreday

Heads up: Tomorrow is Record Store Day, that glorious day on which we celebrate the joy of crate-digging at independently owned record stores across the nation (and around the world). The project was founded in 2007 to fete the unique cultural world that is the “record store” (and that is a culture that merits its own anthropological study).  The smell of must co-mingling with plastic wrapping, the sound of an obscure single by some proto-punk band you’ve never heard of blasting over the speakers, the chatter of audiophiles buzzing about the latest re-issues and re-releases–these are just a few of the reasons why I love a good record store.

But more importantly, Record Store Day means great limited-edition LPs and CDs and live performances at participating stores! I’m excited to get my paws on the New Order “Temptation/Hurt” 7″, the Smiths “Headmaster Ritual” 7″, and the reissue of The Talking Heads’ brilliant debut “Talking Heads: 77.” Needless to say, I will be subsisting off of ramen noodles for the rest of the month as I blow my money on these goodies. The complete list of these limited-edition releases is here.

Other Music at 15 East 4th St. (between Broadway and Lafayette Street) will be offering 10 percent off everything in the store from Friday all the way through Sunday, as well as an impressive lineup of in-store DJ sets on Saturday featuring artists like Grizzly Bear, The Pains of Being Pure At Heart, and the Raveonettes. This culminates in a live performance by Bill Callahan (with drinks provided by that old faithful Pabst Blue Ribbon). You can check out all of the details of what Other Music’s got planned here.

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Rob Cameron and the rest of the crew at Championship Vinyl would definitely approve.

For more info on Record Store Day and to see which stores in your area are participating in the festivities, visit www.recordstoreday.com

The Lady and The Declan Patrick MacManus

I think I may just be in the small minority of people under the age of 35 who actually listen to Elvis Costello. A lot. It’s more than just a healthy appreciation for “This Year’s Model.” I find myself listening to him on my iPod or spinning one of his albums on vinyl at least seven or eight times a week.

This love of the bespectacled “angry young man” is virtually imprinted on my DNA. My father owns just about every single one of his albums that were released from approximately 1977 to 1987. As a precocious tween making the eight hour drive down to Santa Cruz for that hallowed tradition of the “family vacation,” my father would blast any number of Elvis Costello albums. I would sigh rather loudly, roll my eyes as an eleven year old is prone to do, put on my headphones, and turn up The Spice Girls on my Walkman. Nine years later, I see that my father was trying to actually infuse my youthful, defiant ears with an appreciation for one of the greatest musicians of later half of the 20th century.

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I’ll admit that I’m biased. While I respect his later work, I’m almost always listening to that first trifecta–“My Aim Is True,” “This Year’s Model,” and “Armed Forces,” with an occasional dash of “Get Happy!!” or “Imperial Bedroom.”Yes, his tunes blend pop sensibilities like jangling guitar lines and whirling synthesizers with the snarling sneer of the jilted lover and ignored genius. Yes, he’s commendable for trying his hand at every single genre in the record store (with arguably mixed results): Jazz, pop-punk, roots-rock, bluegrass, hell, the man’s even classically scored a ballet adaptation of Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” (here’s to you, “Il Sogno”).

But the reason I keep listening when my peers don’t is his complete understanding of the female psyche like no other male singer-songwriter I know of.

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