The Joe Vig Top 40

Critic Joe Viglione reviews movies, books, DVDs, CDs, and has all sorts of opinions on a variety of things. The monthly Top 40 is a sort-of directory... commentaries and essays expand the thought process on RockJournalistJoeVig.blogspot.com ...so the reviews on the Top 40 aren't final, they are just the starting point to more discussion. You can always contact Joe directly at visual_radio [@] yahoo.com

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

 

MARCH 2008 TOP 40

THREE #1 STORIES THIS MONTH

"You Can't Always get What You Want" Remix from '21'

THRILLER 25th Anniversary Edition

NORMAN GREENBAUM interview
















TRIPLE #1 This Month

Norman Greenbaum and The Rolling Stones




1)Norman Greenbaum
1)"You Can't Always Get What You Want" Re-mix of Rolling Stones/Jimmy Miller classic
1)Thriller 25th Anniversary Edition
2)"The Age Of Shiva" by Manil Suri - Book Visual Radio #406
3)Painting With Words & Music - Joni Mitchell DVD
4)Something Simple Stuart Davis
5)World Entertainment War
6)American Speedway
7)Pato Banton & Friends
8)The Transmitters
9)The Quick Mondo Deco
10)Mar y Sol - Classic Rock Retrospective



1.Rolling Stones Remix

Awesome! Jimmy Miller would be so proud!



2)The Age of Shiva - Manil Suri





3)PAINTING WITH WORDS & MUSIC - JONI MITCHELL
Review by Joe Viglione
Joni Mitchell's exquisite voice and guitar playing are on display in this satisfying hour-and-a-half-plus of the iconic performer directed by Joan Tosoni and filmed in an intimate setting. The dominant instruments are, no surprise, the singer's voice and her guitar, which is heavy with liquid effects. Much effort went into the circular set and the six cameras have unobstructed views with graceful pans and elegant zoom-ins. Mitchell is the set designer and editorial director with her own paintings adding to the decor, positioned on the walls that swing around the set. There's a two-and-a-half minute discussion of the event before actress Rosanna Arquette introduces the star and the festivities begin. A semi-pensive and solo "Big Yellow Taxi" opens the show, Mitchell not worried about being under this stunningly beautiful microscope that is the colorful set and the all-revealing eye of all these cameras. "Just Like This Train" has the singer close to her artwork and strumming the guitar as if with a paint brush, quite possibly an intentional metaphor from the clever singer always exposing her intuition with a bit of flair. She announces the band early on, just prior to "Night Ride Home," and the musicians ease into the program like drawings that quietly and slowly come to life. Read more here:
http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=10:39fqxqukldae





4.Stuart Davis "Something Simple" The prolific Stuart Davis has some nice slices of pop on "Something Simple, "Deity Freak" with its compelling hook of "party like a pop star" is as infectious as it gets. "The River" is an invitation to jump in, energetic but still holding on to a bit of Al Green's sentiment from his similarly titled tune. "Sugar Bullets" is another great hook, it's just that the set-up isn't as intriguing. Perhaps he should bring this back to the drawing board as the world could use a melody such as this on the airwaves, nice different stylistic swings inside the production to which makes the music all the more appealing. You can hear lots of Elvis Costello influence though Davis personality has no problem making things his own. The bonus audio cd contains samples from the singer's audio book, Love Has No Opposite and, as spoken word goes, it may be tough for some. Read more here:
http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&token=ADFEAEE47319DD49A87520E89B2C45F6A672FE19D650DA971F28455A92B63E45913E65CA46F68BA5DBB677AB7BA8E02CA45A079FCBEF5CFEDC6C3E349D8EDB&sql=10:3zfrxzejld6e




5.World Entertainment War


This is truly the "lost" Jefferson Starship album by soon-to-be Grace Slick replacement Darby Gould (Darby, of course, the name of Grace Slick's ex-brother-in-law who wrote "Somebody To Love").

This 1991 disc is interesting and important as a Jefferson Starship artifact. Vocalist Darby Gould would step into Grace Slick's shoes, all documented nicely on Jefferson Starship's own Deep Space/Virgin Sky disc from 1995, and her emergence here is a nice starting point for a singer who still works with the legendary 70s group well into the new millennium. In fact, it's not a stretch to say this material follows the Paul Kantner solo efforts of the 1970s, though not with as much vision and charm. The key song, "Dark Ages, written by vocalist Rob Brezsny, became an important part of the J.S. 1990s set and is a keeper. A melody with strong commercial potential, the message also cuts through better than anything else on this self-titled disc. Read more here:

http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&token=ADFEAEE47319DD49A87520E89B2C45F6A672FE19D650DA971F28455A92B63E45913E65CA46F68BA5DBB677AB7BA8E02CA45A079FCBEF5CFFDB6C3C399D8EDB&sql=10:apfyxqq5ldje





6 AMERICAN SPEEDWAY Ship of Fools


AMERICAN SPEEDWAY "SHIP OF FOOLS"

The title and opening track to Ship Of Fools by American Speedway is a no-nonsense, hard-hitting Ramones-gone-metal blitzkrieg moment that blends into a two and a half minute track they call...American Speedway". With both the CD title and group name branding the first two solid efforts/tracks the album continues with a consistent and relentless high energy mix of sizzling guitars and spitfire vocals. Though stylistically a light year or two away from the aforementioned Ramones this quartet faces the same dilemma that venerable punk band experienced - as good as this material is, and it is very good, it is firmly locked into one style with little hope for a Top 40 hit and no chance of playing to anyone outside of its realm. Read more here:
http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=10:dxfexzqhldae




7.Pato Banton & Friends

Review by Joe Viglione

Overflowing with guests, Pato Banton and Friends gets right down to business with a catchy reggae-pop opening track, "Bubbling Hot," to start things off. Ranking Roger is the first colleague to blend his talents with Banton and they are a perfect match, the lyrics flow in quick succession but are easily understood, and the zany sound effects add much to the musical concoction. The "Ska Remix" of "Spirits in a Material World," featuring Sting, is a good and abrupt change of pace, and a sign of things to come: that the reinvention of American pop hits will be the highlights on this disc — not as much because the melodies are familiar but that Banton and crew seem to put more effort into these classics. It certainly shows. They do a fine job on this nugget from the Police, with offbeat sounds swimming inside the vibe the two singers set. Stephen Morrison showing up on a cover of the Rascals' "Groovin' " is perhaps the most effective production here, and evokes an immediate smooth and easy feeling in the listener. The "positive summertime vi-bray-tion" is a super blend of Eddie Brigati and Felix Cavaliere's melody with dancehall. Pulling "Baby Come Back" out of the mothballs, the 1968 classic by Eddy Grant's Equals is also terrific, UB40 adding their talents to another one of the highlights on this CD.


Read more here:
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8.The Transmitters I Fear no-one...
Jangle jangle tucked inside cacophony is just part of the mantra of the Transmitters on I Fear No One..., a 22-track album that is a combination of non-stop erratic mania mixed in with avant-garde ambient-flavored musical experiments. The notes on this CD scrapbook are frustratingly threadbare except for the track listing of the 14 or so musicians who show up to perform on specific songs/essays. A cover of the Velvet Underground's "Ferryboat Bill," once embraced on a mini-four-song bootleg EP before being legitimized on Another View, is a nice run-through but not as true to the spirit as other Velvets-inspired pieces like "Ache." Total beat poetry stream of consciousness in that song: is he singing "Another mad crush another man abuses"? Who knows? — it's another mad descent into a quagmire of electronic sounds — one of the previously unreleased tracks recorded around London, and one of the more impressive ones. Moody music with a pessimistic point of view announced over the musical wanderings and so different from the harsh punk of "Paper Boy," a 35 second 1978 track from the album 24 Hours. It's all a bit more cohesive than Half Japanese but still disorganized enough to keep this music firmly stuck in the realm of college radio with little chance of mainstream crossover. Read more here:

http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=10:hifuxzygldae



9THE QUICK MONDO DECO

Earle Mankey worked with Sparks and the Dickies, and the type of understanding necessary to translate sounds from those experimental groups is a plus on Mondo Deco, from the original Quick. As with the other major Kim Fowley and Mankey discovery, the Runaways, this band was released on Mercury in 1976, and it is one of the best examples of fun new wave to escape unscathed from all the hype. Unfortunately, it failed to sell in big numbers, but the album is terrific, a real underground gem. Guitarist Steven Hufsteter writes impressive and energetic pop; "Hillary" and "No
No Girl" are two excellent examples. The Runaways should have cut "Anybody" — it could have been their breakout hit. With its tight bassline and perfect
hollow underground rock drums, Mondo Deco has lots of treats hidden among its ten tunes. Read more here:

http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=10:hxfqxqy5ld0e





10)CLASSIC ROCK RETROSPECTIVE:
MAR Y SOL with Emerson Lake & Palmer, J Geils Band, Cactus

After Monterey Pop, Woodstock, the Atlanta Pop Festival, and Isle of Wight, the Mar Y Sol: First International Puerto Rico Pop Festival was more than anti-climactic, and the resulting double-record set runs almost like a supplement to the similar Medicine Ball Caravan film soundtrack. The Allman Brothers Band, Emerson, Lake & Palmer, and B.B.King may have been legitimate headliners, but Osibisa were hardly a household name, and "Bedroom Mazurka" by Cactus on this LP makes one wonder why half that band would ever want to leave Vanilla Fudge to create a watered down Black Oak Arkansas. A five-minute-plus version of "Looking for a Love" by J. Geils Band rips the album wide open; it's a terrific performance by a terrific up and coming band that had barely dented the Top 40 with the tune three months before this concert, held on April 1, 2, and 3, 1972. Atlantic executive and album producer Tunc Erim should've known better than to follow Geils' up-tempo raver with 13 minutes and 20 seconds of John McLaughlin's Mahavishnu Orchestra. Despite the heavy use of violin, this was not the Velvet Underground, and the manic early fusion is just a little too progressive to balance out the program. It's great to hear Jonathan Edwards perform two songs for almost eight minutes; his originals are highlights here, and like J.Geils Band, he was making his music in Boston and had recently charted on the Top 40, but this festival wasn't going to do for these artists what Woodstock and its triple-vinyl set would do for the acts on that enterprise. While Dr. John and John Baldry bring legendary status to the affair, Nitzinger and even Herbie Mann are a bit of a stretch for what is called a "pop" festival. Jean-Charles Costa's liner notes are lengthy, but don't tell us much about the event. Read more here


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Artist: Various Artists
Title: Mar Y Sol: The First International Puerto Rico Pop Festival
Date: 1972
Label: Atco Records SD-2-705
Cover Photography: David Gahr
Inside Liner Photography: Wendy Lombardi
Art Direction & Album Design: Richard Mantel

Check out this great site for Cover Art
http://tralfaz-archives.com/coverart/coverartlinks.html






11)Marty Balin HEARTS & OTHER FAVORITES
This best-of Marty Balin's two EMI albums, released in 1990, features four songs from the 1981 Balin LP and five from the harder-to-find 1983 Val Garay production of Lucky. Some say that the signing of David Bowie to EMI during his 1983 Let's Dance phase came at a cost to artists on that label, Balin included. It would account for this small output from such a major talent. "Hearts went Top Ten in 1981, followed by the Top 30 "Atlanta Lady (Something About Your Love)" four months later, both written by Jesse Barish, who also penned "Do It for Love" off Lucky, included on this set as well. It is rather astonishing that there is only one Marty Balin composition here, and it is a co-write at that. He's one of four songwriters who came together to pen "All We Really Need" from Lucky, making a clear statement that both EMI releases focused on Balin the singer. There are two things wrong with this picture. In the first place, the guy who wrote "Miracles," "With Your Love," and a number of classic Jefferson Airplane tracks only has one co-write each on his two solo albums. Meanwhile, Jesse Barish, author of "Count on Me" and other tracks on both the Spitfire and Earth Jefferson Starship albums, gets double the output on both of Balin's solo discs than the star himself. The second item is that the record should have been issued in 1982. The Lucky recordings were made between August and December of 1982, with too much time in between. Val Garay was hot with the number one worldwide smash "Bette Davis Eyes" for Kim Carnes two months before "Hearts" hit; for an artist of such depth, both in the songwriting and the vocal departments, it was shameful that EMI couldn't put a follow-up together more quickly, and one that was more in line with what the artist was all about. Read more here:

http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=10:wbfpxq95ldte




12.Cactus Live
For hardcore fans of Cactus, and/or Tim Bogert and Carmine Appice, the boogie onslaught of this first live concert in over 30 years by the updated version of this venerable group should do the trick. It's a solid effort by a band that never offered any surprises, and the inclusion of harp player Randy Pratt and non-descript vocalist Jimmy Kunes keeps things in line with past efforts. Sure, guitarist Jim McCarty goes into overdrive on Mose Allison's "Parchment Farm," but the current lineup of Blue Cheer in 2007 just happen to give the style at play here a little more punch. The encore of "Rock N Roll Children" from this outfit's 1971 release, One Way...Or Another, rambles along with vocalist Kunes looking and sounding like any member of the audience jumping on-stage to have some fun with a trio of rock & roll legends. Without any frills there's little to differentiate the music here from any other collection of yesterday's stars getting together to reminisce. In fact it could be Starz, or a reunion of Flint, former members of Grand Funk Railroad, playing this hard-driving blues/rock in any typical nightclub in suburban America. The camera work is very public access TV, the lighting inconsistent, and the direction rather pedestrian. Plus there's no "Take Me for a Little While" or "You Keep Me Hanging On" for fans to key into, perhaps the biggest let down. Read more here:

http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=10:a9fyxzqjldse




13)Kim Carnes by Kim Carnes
http://allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=10:dzftxqq5ldke




14)Andi Sex Gang - Inventing New Destruction


http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&token=ADFEAEE47319DD49A87520E89B2C45F6A672FE19D650DA971F28455A92B63E45913E65CA46F68BA5DBB677AB7BA8E02CA45A079FCBEF5CFFDC6C38359D8EDB&sql=10:wpfoxzw5ldse





15)Glenn O'Brien's TV Party THE HEAVY METAL SHOW
http://wc03.allmovie.com/cg/avg.dll?p=avg&sql=1:406649





16)Blaze Bayley Alive in Poland




17)Nick Drake Under Review


http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&token=ADFEAEE47319DD49A87520E89B2C45F6A672FE19D650DA971F28455A92B63E45913E65CA46F68BA5DBB676AB78A6E02CA45A079FC3E456F8D666392DED93&sql=10:wnfqxzegldae




18)Nitty Gritty Dirt Band Greatest Hits Live


Read More Here:

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19)Hurricane "Over The Edge"

Over The Edge is a superb ten song collection of close to 46 minutes of album rock from the latter end of the 1980s, AOR metal with hooks and clever twists that bring it a cut above the expected fare the plethora of hair bands gave the audience in that era. With the same irreverent fun that made Ratt's "Round & Round" so listenable the songs here venture from the 3 to 5 minute range, whipped into shape with superb riffing behind a heavy chorus and Kelly Hansen's very on-target vocals. When you listen to Hansen sing the hits of Foreigner eighteen years later on the Alive & Rockin' DVD it is like tuning in to a Doors' clone band when the real thing is preferable - and in Foreigner's case, potentially available. The problem with Hansen's version of Foreigner is that the new line-up would be better off re-exploring some of the songs the new players were affiliated with, most notably the material on this exemplary disc. "Messing With The Hurricane" is inspired rock & roll, rising above the metal trappings with solid beats and some guitar majesty from Robert Sarzo, yes, the brother of Quiet Riot's Rudi Sarzo, just as bassist Tony Cavazo is the brother of Quiet Riot's Carlos Cavazo. Hurricane is Quiet Riot without the sneer, no-nonsense metal produced by Mike Clink a year after he helped put together Appetite For Destruction, and for those who like that Guns 'n' Roses classic this album has much to offer. "Messin' With A Hurricane", a theme song for sure, is more than slightly reminiscent of GnR and coming four years after Scorpions' Top 10 hit, "Rock You Like A Hurricane", it probably found some inspiration in that popular metal gem. Check out how phonetically similar the endings to both "hurricane" songs are. Love It To Death/longtime Alice Cooper producer Bob Ezrin is listed as Executive Producer and "Insane" not only has an opening ripped right out of "Billion Dollar Babies", the title is the centerpiece word from Cooper's "Ballad Of Dwight Frye". Don't think it isn't intentional, the slowed-up version of "I'm 18" is perfect for the Nights with Alice Cooper radio show and a commendable slow reinvention of Alice's break-through song. Read more here:
http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=10:hifixq85ldse~T2





20)Gary Morris Live
As with Quantum Leap's Mel Tillis Live, Gail Davies Greatest Hits, and Lee Greenwood Live the material here appears to have been filmed at Orlando, FL's Cheyenne Saloon and Opera House, which hosted a number of country acts for The Nashville Network's Church Street Station program. Unlike those three DVDs, the announcer here is initially absent, as is the usual "Church Street Station" logo and other identifying marks. What this disc does have in common with one of the aforementioned collections is Denise Price and the duo of Jimmy Price and Cliff Downs (aka Downs & Price) performing smack-dab in the middle of this concert, as they do on Gail Davies Greatest Hits. The music is fine and Morris is in his usual rich, bellowing voice, singing in a shirt that needs pressing...or how about a wardrobe change after "The Love She Found in Me," as he's pretty soaked in sweat by this point. Gary Morris doesn't move around much, but he can get somewhat chatty mentioning Orlando before going in to an original, "No Place to Hide," which isn't even listed on the packaging's "Featured Tracks" section. "Headed for a Heartache," from his 1981 self-titled album, sounds great augmented by this proficient backing band, the singer in suit jacket and thoroughly engaging, though still pretty stationary. Denise Price comes in eighteen-and-a-half minutes into the set with a sassy "Can't Even Get the Blues," toning it down for an authentic and quite elegant rendition of Anne Murray's "Could I Have This Dance?" Read more here:

http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=10:3iftxzuhld0e





21)New Ladies of Country
One of the better collections of performances from The Nashville Network's Church Street Station show recorded at The Cheyenne Saloon & Opera House this features four main artists and works better than other DVDs in the series because there is less extraneous material and more performance. Kathy Mattea opens things up with the country tune "Ball & Chain" (not to be confused with Janis Joplin's rendition of Big Mama Thornton's classic or Tommy James pop tune with the same title). Her rendition of "Someone Is Falling In Love" is styled after the Kenny Rogers/Helen Reddy reign of 70s/80s middle-of-the-road easy listening style, and her voice fits the melody perfectly. The band behind Mattea is lively, including a guy and a gal on backing vocals who keep the movement happening behind her. The guy, John Thompson, steps forward to duet on "Put Yourself In My Place which is a good change for this all female presentation. Lorrie Morgan starts off with Olivia Newton John's big 1975 hit "Please Mr. Please, titled Please Me Please on the DVD case. She also covers Lionel Richie's 1984 hit, "Stuck On You", which lends itself beautifully to this format as if written for country. Read more here:
http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=10:j9fwxzqhldae




22Greg Lake
This eponymous live audio CD culls its ten tracks from Greg Lake Live, a more extensive DVD which has even more familiar material from the Greg Lake history/repertoire than this spin-off disc. In that respect, this presentation in its truncated form is rather redundant. When other artists from the time period (though not necessarily from the same genre) like Leslie West have their own "Official Bootleg Series" of CDs including fancy titles to keep the fans on notice, one has to ask why Lake isn't getting the same kind of treatment. He certainly deserves it. Yes, there are credits galore in the four-page booklet and the music is as precise and powerful as one expects it to be, but the question remains -- do rabid fans of prog rock want a less than full-length concert when the DVD offers so much more? Also keep in mind that many of Lake's solo recordings are live, including a 1981 CD which reflects the DVD title to this concert, Greg Lake Live. Confusion reigns, even for the die-hard fans. Now on to the music. It's as good as you would imagine, the singer/guitarist in fine form spinning a magical "In the Court of the Crimson King" as well as a dirge-like "21st Century Schizoid Man," both from the brilliant 1969 King Crimson debut. Sure, the fans will appreciate those classics getting the glossy progressive treatment, the eerie cutting edge of the original versions now polished by time and not as provocative, but the difference between them is stark and the bombast present here doesn't add to the legend, it merely gives another perspective.

Read more here:
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23 Reboundin' Jen Murzda



24. Living Legends The Gathering


25.Queen Under Review 1980-1991


26)Sex Gang - Live At Ocean
The Borman Chain" opens up the proceedings like Marilyn Manson without the drag. Perhaps the best description of this very underground tape is Pere Ubu meets Marilyn Manson, the visuals very out of control at the beginning, so much so it feels like a bootleg looking for respectability. Which for the deep-catalog fans of Sex Gang Children is probably a plus - some added integrity to this goth sensation who include in this package an "image gallery" as well as two and a half minutes of backstage footage as bonus features. There are just a few words and credits on the back cover, no liner notes, so appreciate the grunge/machine shop industrial bent of the concert because what they do give is a lengthy set list. Seeing a goth band putting its makeup on does have advantages for the fan base, but it's the erratic tape that followers will cherish. Read more here:
http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&token=ADFEAEE47319DD49A87520E89B2C45F6A672FE19D650DA971F28455A92B63E45913E65CA46F68BA5DBB676AB78ADE02CA45A079FCBE457F5D6653A2DED93&sql=10:gzfwxz8hldae


27)John Baglio


28KRIS DELMHORST's SHOTGUN SINGER




29)Chris Barber

Review by Joe Viglione
The redoubtable Chris Barber is joined here by many guests, including Andy Fairweather Low and Graham Lyle. The title Can't Stop Now: European Tour 2007 is a bit misleading, as this terrific collection of songs (running well over an hour) was compiled from a variety of sources dating back to 1985, 1988, 2006, and early 2007. The four-page booklet is jam-packed with information, but you can go to the legend's own website, Chrisbarber.net, to get the dates, players, and even more information. The sound is superb, and although he could very well be George Burns singing "I Wish I Was 18 Again" on the title studio track, "Can't Stop Now," Barber should be allowed the frivolity that fans will find charming — a charm that could irritate the uninitiated into breaking dishes when they hear his voice. But the music is absolutely beautiful from start to finish, with Fairweather Low's contributions, including the medley of "Lay My Burden Down" and "Will the Circle Be Unbroken," recorded in February of 2006 at the Riverfront Theater in Newport For more click here:http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=10:k9fixzlhldse







30)PORTSMOUTH SINFONIA
In 1974, Columbia Records took advertisements out for this project produced by Brian Eno and conducted by John Farley, and those ads blared "Indisputably, the worst orchestra in the world." "It was awful," stated a Mrs. Betty Atkinson from New Musical Express, adding, "I want my money back." And this statement came from the Evening Standard: "One member...was caught secretly practicing and had to be thrown out." This was the classical version of Mrs. Miller, with Eno among the 33 "band members" on display on the front cover. "Also Sprach Zarathustra, Op. 31 (Excerpt)" is pretty funny, but if your cup of tea is to hear Richard Strauss, Johann Strauss, Bach, Bizet, Holst, Grieg, Tchaikovsky, and Rossini bastardized, you are probably one of the few who appreciated the sequel. Antilles released Hallelujah two years later in 1976, and there seems to be little excuse for it. Making an intentionally bad record is an art form — Lou Reed did it with Metal Machine Music to stick it to his record label, and that record is as unlistenable as the Portsmouth Sinfonia's Plays the Popular Classics, but it is far more valuable in collectors' circles.
read more here
http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=10:w9fwxqlhldhe

31 Kathi McDonald



"Insane Asylum"Kathi McDonald was one of the friends recruited by Big Brother & the Holding Company to perform on their two post-Joplin releases, Be a Brother and How Hard It Is. David Briggs, producer of the second Alice Cooper album Easy Action and multiple early Neil Young discs is at the helm on Insane Asylum. With arrangements by The Jefferson Starship's Pete Sears, this is a showcase for the chops and musicianship of McDonald. There's a terrific reading of the Bee Gees' "To Love Somebody" (which Janis Joplin covered years earlier), and an interesting first track co-written by McDonald and Pete Sears, "Bogart to Bowie," with Nils Lofgren on guitar and Bobbye Hall on percussion. The photos of McDonald on the back cover are chaotic and beautiful, a cartoon caricature of these adorns the cover, the illustration by Seiko Kashihara. With Ronnie Montrose on guitar and Pete Sears on keys for a heavy version of "(Love Is Like A) Heatwave," you basically have Big Brother & the Holding Company/ Montrose/Jefferson Starship covering Martha & the Vandellas. This 1974 recording was a year before Linda Ronstadt repeated Martha's feat of going Top Five with the song. There is something about the record that feels like the band is holding back. That evaporates with what may be the best performance on the disc, "Threw Away My Love," the second Sears/McDonald original. Kathi's great, bluesy vocal fights and Journey's Neil Schon on guitar give the track lots of soul, which is missing in much of the record. Read more here:


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32 Garland Jeffreys Escape Artist
Escape Artist is veteran Garland Jeffreys sounding very Elvis Costello, with clean Bob Clearmountain production and guest stars like David Johansen, Nona Hendryx, Lou Reed, Adrian Belew, Randy and Michael Brecker, and many others. It is a very satisfying pop disc. Jonathan Richman has his band Modern Lovers, Willie Alexander wrote a song with the same name, and David Bowie wrote "Modern Love"; Jeffreys' "Modern Lovers" has nothing to do with any of them except that he comes from the same underground scene as all of the above. A good idea is a good idea, and this is another good song with that title. "Christine" also works. It's a fun pop romp helping make this one of Jeffreys' most cohesive discs. "Ghost of a Chance" is a clever tune about a relationship with no hope; there is a solid, harder version of Rudy Martinez's "96 Tears" with some very cool guitar making it the most radio-friendly track. Jeffreys' vocals are in great shape, in control, and almost menacing. The back cover has him reading a New York Post with former president Jimmy Carter declaring an emergency, with very movie film-like photos/poses by the artist. "Innocent" takes the album other places, going into a Romeo Void or Cars '80s place. It's very catchy, very new wave meets techno. "When it comes to sex/You're using your special effects/...We're gonna ruin all the records in the fingerprint file." Classic Garland Jeffreys lyrics. Read more here:


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33) 2 Decades on the Bus with Garcia and the Greatful Dead

Summer of Love
Performed by: Rock Scully, David Bean, Dane Edmondson,
Read more here:

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34.Bob Mould Circle of Friends LIVE

Released exactly two years after being recorded on October 7, 2004, at the 9:30 Club in Washington, D.C., this is a lengthy and terrific concert from Hüsker Dü founder Bob Mould and some highly innovative and respectful friends. The four-piece unit tears into "A Good Idea" from 1992's Copper Blue album, when the music was marketed under the name Sugar, and they do a great job with it. Richard Morel's keyboards lift riffs from Cars bandmember Greg Hawkes' inventory of ideas, while Verbow's Jason Narducy on bass may as well have been with his mentor from the very beginning, his backing vocals and rhythms a perfect complement to the methodical and raggedly dreamy "Hardly Getting Over It." The legendary lead singer then dives into a solid wave of Buzzcocks-styled slashing guitar and unintelligible vocals, making for some great rock & roll on "Could You Be the One," recorded with lots of close-ups and taped with a dark hue. The music itself certainly makes for good listening, but the incessant darkness captured by the cameras and the lights flashing through "I Apologize" tends to make repeated viewings a bit of a chore. "Hoover Dam" is also veiled in blue light while issuing the power -- and the glory -- with keys, drums, and bass swelling behind Mould's guitar to give a truly united grunge outpouring with splendid backing vocals and a lead guitar solo lifted directly from the Neil Young scrapbook. Read more here:
http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&token=ADFEAEE47319DD49A87520E89B2C45F6A672FE19D650DA971F28455A92B63E45913E65CA46F68BA5DBB677AB7BA8E02CA45A079FCBEF5CFEDA6C39389D8EDB&sql=10:h9fexz9gldde





35)SPECIAL EDITION: 2 Joni Mitchell DVDs

Joni Mitchell Special Edition combines two previously released videos/DVDs, 1999's Painting with Words and Music along with 2003's Woman of Heart and Mind. These are both excellent discs to have, the one problem being that some of the "bonus" tracks on Woman of Heart and Mind turn out to be some of the performances from Painting with Words and Music and so the consumer is getting a bit of déjà vu and double exposure. That's not as egregious as pulling the live performances off of Marianne Faithful's Dreaming My Dreams and re-releasing the DVD with only the biography narrative and interviews, but it shows a disturbing trend among name artists having their material released and re-released in the same fashion; Greg Lake another case in point with CDs and DVDs that contain variations on the same title, with some of the same recordings. The Susan Lacy written and directed biography has so much information packed into the story that the producers could easily have gone back into the vaults and beefed up the bonus aspect of this package. Read more here:
http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=10:dpfrxqqsldde


36.The Amboy Dukes Marriage on The Rocks / Rock Bottom
Marriage On The Rocks/Rock Bottom


Amboy Dukes' Marriage on the Rocks/Rock Bottom is a very musical record, more experimental than their releases on Mainstream Records, not as soaked in the
Pat Travers blues-rock which the follow-up, Survival of the Fittest embraced, and not as rocking as The Call of the Wild, which would be released about four years after this on Warner Brothers' Discreet label. Interesting to note the mutation of the Nugent sound with every label change. This work on Polydor is certainly more in the Ten Years After bag (especially on Survival of the Fittest, Live), with keyboards up
there in the mix almost equal to Ted Nugent's guitar. The entire first side is composed by Nugent, and the first song, "Marriage/Part 1: Man/Part 2: Woman/Part
3: Music" sounds more like Jethro Tull than anything else. It's a nine-minute-and-three-second progressive blues number and it is highly listenable. Just looking at the image of the four bandmembers staring up from the darkness on the back cover shows as much of an identity crisis in the presentation as is revealed in
the music by the Amboy Dukes on this disc. Featuring Ted Nugent is low-key on the cover; he eventually would get co-billing with the band name and find fame
Read more here:
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37.The Amboy Dukes (debut)
http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&token=ADFEAEE47319DD49A87520E89B2C45F6A672FE19D650DA971F28455A92B63E45913E65CA46F68BA5DBB677AB7BADE02CA45A079FCFE453FBD664342DFC93&sql=10:fbftxqr5ldje



38.STOMPERS SCRAPBOOK Review by Joe Viglione

Sal Baglio has never had the opportunity to show his innovative guitar prowess in the context of his Stompers, a vision he brings to the music of Andy Pratt as well as his own Rock E. Rollins Bowie-inspired work. The excitement of The Stompers as a live band overshadowed the fact that Baglio is a superb instrumentalist on the level of Pratt's other guitar genius Mark Doyle, or Ian Hunter axeman Mick Ronson. In 1994, Boston-area label Botown, founded by the late booking agent Mickey O'Halloran, released The Stompers: Greatest Hits Live, an important document of New England's Stompers in the environment where they shined -- on-stage. Live Scrapbook 1979-1983 goes a step further with 15 songs collected from various times and places, "This Is Rock 'N' Roll" from The Paradise nightclub dated February 13, 1979, to a rendition of "You're the One" from New York's Palladium, April 23, 1982. It is in that song that the listener can hear Sal Baglio's ability to get the audience into his performance, the band playing with objectivity while the singer brings the crowd into the mix.
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39.WCOZ Album

review by Joe Viglione

Radio stations sponsoring compilations of local recording groups was the rage in the '80s, and some important musical time capsules were created. When acts hit from those discs, those time capsules turned into collectors' items. The first volume of now-defunct radio station WCOZ's The Best of the Boston Beat (named after DJ Lesley Palmiter's excellent Sunday night local music program) was issued on WCOZ Records, manufactured by Infinity Records, in 1979 (the station's major competition, by the way, was Infinity Broadcasting). This second set, released in 1981, is on the Starsteam label out of Houston, TX. Starstream Records/Big Music America may have been a company which specialized in radio station LP projects, as the disc came with a ballot for voting on the album's best track and there was a national 25,000 dollar grand prize and a "record contract" (no specifics other than that). "Big Music America has gone into major cities all across the country to solicit tapes," is the claim on the back cover. Years after the regional album's creation, no such "battle of the bands" mentality is necessary. Classic tracks by the Jon Butcher Axis, Balloon (who featured future Joe Perry Project lead singer Charlie Farren), soon-to-be Boardwalk recording artists the Stompers, along with Johnny Barnes and a band with future producer Chris Lannon as guitarist, Midnight Traveller, give the album credibility the contest could not. Musically, the best tracks are "Shutdown" from the Stompers, "Roll Me" from Johnny Barnes featuring the gifted Craig Covner on guitar, Charlie Farren singing "Political Vertigo," and a classic early rendition of "New Man" by the Jon Butcher Axis, more driving than the remake on their Polygram debut. Anne English gets a nice runner-up status with "All I'm Waiting for Is You," while the other artists provide a snapshot of a moment in Boston music history. "Rock on the Radio" by Mark Williamson and American Teen is mainstream hard pop, while Midnight Traveller travels that same road. Read more hear:

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40.Billy Holiday
Entertainment for Home Video's (aka Efor Films) Billie Holiday: The Life & Artistry of Lady Day now finds itself part of the Jazzmemories series from Music Video Distributors, here given the alternate title The Genius of Lady Day. On the front cover MVD uses a Scott Yanow quote from AMG, which -- plus a few more paragraphs on the back -- is just about all of the written information the viewer can expect on this otherwise generous package of Billie Holiday film clips merged with a 30-minute biography. Read more here:
http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=10:igae4j177wav





If you enjoy this Top 40 there are more links to more reviews:
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