Friday, September 30, 2016

Bowie - The '80s


David Bowie started off the '80s with one of his best albums... and ended it with one of his worst. And in between those two points, he catapulted into international superstardom, mainstream success, and creative confusion. He'd rebound, though.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Bowie - The '70s


Warning: If you're a casual Bowie fan, you should turn and run now. Go get yourself a copy of the Best Of and be done with it.

Starting in 1989, EMI (Rykodisc in the US) began a campaign of reissuing Bowie's catalog. All his albums were remastered with bonus tracks and there was an odds 'n sods box set collection, Sound & Vision. This was basically the first big Remaster campaign, which since has become quite common. Some people still swear by these 1990-1992 versions of the albums as being the definitive versions.

In 1999, his catalog went to Virgin, who began their own remaster campaign, issuing all the albums, newly remastered, but sans bonus tracks.

In 2007-2009 his albums were released on SHM-CD in Japan. In 2013, many of his albums were mastered for HD digital. Just this year, posthumous box sets have been released with yet new remasters.

Does it all really matter? Don't they basically sound the same? Well, not really. I'm not a collector (good luck finding all 200+ versions of Ziggy Stardust), but I am a bit of an audiophile and after being a fan for so long, I've just acquired different versions of the same albums over time.

So, you have choices... although, I don't think you can go wrong with the EMI/Rykodisc versions from '90-'92.

As to the music itself, maybe no one has gone through so many different styles and incarnations, alter egos and sounds in one single decade than Bowie in the 1970s.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

David Bowie - The '60s

Who knew this fresh-faced young lad would become the greatest British pop musician of all time? [according to BBC voters]  I have an embarrassingly large collection, which I will try to group by decade. So, stay tuned...

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Lou Reed


"I'll take Manhattan in a garbage bag with Latin written on it that says "it's hard to give a shit these days." - Lou Reed

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Flesh For Lulu


Despite having "I Go Crazy" play seemingly throughout the entire movie "Some Kind of Wonderful" - it seems most of Flesh For Lulu's catalog has gone out of print. There were talks of a reunion, but sadly, singer Nick Marsh passed away in June 2015.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Wild - Wild 1


This strange concoction could only have come from the '80s. Part leather biker rock, part goth rock, part sub-industrial drum machines... this studio project from Todd Barrone and John Wildblood only produced one album - "Wild 1" - but it's a good listen for fans of Billy Idol, The Cult, Circus of Power, Zodiac Mindwarp...

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Paradise Lost


Paradise Lost built a good following on their first couple dark metal albums, then turned more polished hard rock, then turned electronic rock, then started going backwards toward doom metal. Personally, I would start with "One Second" - fantastically produced by Sank, with deep baritone vocals. Goth hard rock never got any better.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Ministry


Ministry... the undisputed godfathers of Industrial Rock. What more can be said about Uncle Al?

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Pere Ubu


Post-punk... from Cleveland, Ohio. The early stuff is essential. From there, it gets spotty... from shear avant garde weirdness of "Song of the Bailing Man" to pure pop satisfaction of 1989's "Cloudland."

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Eurythmics


Eurythmics had a pretty good run, all the way through the '80s before Annie Lennox went off to a successful solo career and Dave Stewart became songwriter/producer/impressario.

Monday, September 5, 2016

Hunters & Collectors


Sometimes bands are unduly held to impossible standards and deemed failures by the industry when they don't live up to them. Hunters And Collectors never had the international success of fellow Aussies INXS and Midnight Oil. Despite that, they have the most-played song in OZ history (Throw Your Arms Around Me) and are used as the theme song to Australian Rules Football (Holy Grail). Not bad for a band whose first couple releases were noisy, moody post-punk that no one thought would ever be Top 40 material.

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Billy Idol


One of the few albums I actually had on cassette, I practically wore this one out.

Saturday, September 3, 2016

The Cult


The Cult embody rock music, sometimes in spite of themselves.

Friday, September 2, 2016

Midnight Oil


One of the greatest live bands I've ever seen, probably the best "political" band to ever exist, Australia's Midnight Oil was all over Alt radio in the '80s and '90s.