Sunday, December 27, 2020

Adam Ant


Stuart Leslie Goddard, AKA Adam Ant, and sometimes Adam & The Ants, is one of the true characters of the 80s.

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

RIP Harold Budd



Harold Budd was one of the originators of ambient music.  His signature treated piano sound is a beautiful and haunting sound.

Tuesday, December 15, 2020

Saturday, December 5, 2020

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, December 1, 2020

Cheb i Sabbah

Cheb i Sabbah produced some of the greatest Indian music of the last 20 years.

Wednesday, November 25, 2020

World Party



Karl Wallinger spent a short time in The Waterboys before forming his own group and went on to produce quality Beatles-esque songs.

Monday, November 23, 2020

John Foxx

John Foxx started out fronting Ultravox, but left after 3 albums.  His early solo work was very synth-heavy, working beneath a layer of cold waves, not unlike Gary Numan.  He turned to ambient music through the '90s, returning to more pop oriented material with The Maths in 2011.

Thursday, October 15, 2020

Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Miranda Sex Garden


Miranda Sex Garden's first album was a mostly a cappella exorcise with female voices that would fit in at a Renn Faire but probably nowhere else.  Things got interesting, however, when they began mixing rock and folk instruments in with those vocals, to crushing and dramatic effect.

Saturday, July 18, 2020

The Mighty Lemon Drops

Drawing early comparisons to Echo & The Bunnymen, TMLD created 2 of my favorite albums of the 1980s.  When the '90s hit, they changed to a more Madchester-inspired sound, with very mediocre results.

Friday, July 3, 2020

Pet Shop Boys

Pet Shop Boys are still going strong, with a huge and impressive body of work.

Thursday, July 2, 2020

Talk Talk - RIP Mark Hollis

Such a great band, even their hit singles didn't do justice to the great albums they graced the '80s with before getting quieter and quieter and disappearing with a whisper.

Sunday, June 28, 2020

Wall Of Voodoo

Wall of Voodoo were a quirky LA band, with strange synth sounds and Stan Ridgway's warbly voice.  Ridgway left after 2 albums and was replaced by Andy Prieboy, but success eluded them and they lasted just 2 more albums.

Sunday, June 7, 2020

Youth - Man of a Thousand Mixes

Wrapping up the Killing Joke posts with the most prolific member - Martin Glover, aka Youth. To list all of the artists he's produced, remixed, or collaborated with would be en entire blog unto itself. He's been behind the boards for hit albums by the likes of The Verve, Crowded House, The Cult, Pink Floyd, Peter Murphy, Echo & The Bunnymen, and his own band, Killing Joke. He's collaborated with Paul McCartney on 3 albums. He ran his own trance label, Dragonfly Records, and Liquid Sound Design, which focuses on psychedelic dub and electronic music. Two of my favorite albums are "East of the Ganges" under the name Kumba Mela Experiment, and Dub Trees' 2000 album.

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

This Mortal Coil

This Mortal Coil is the name of producer Ivo Watts' project.  He enlisted some of his 4AD friends and created some gauzy melancholia, probably most well known for their cover of "Song to the Siren," with Liz Fraser singing.

Saturday, May 16, 2020

Cocteau Twins

Cocteau Twins created their own musical language around Robin Guthrie's ethereal guitar and Liz Fraser's otherworldly vocals.

Thursday, May 14, 2020

Danzig / Misfits

Anyone who's into punk has eventually come across The Misfits.  And anyone who's into hard rock has eventually come across Glenn Danzig.  Whether you view his persona as campy shtick or authentically the Dark Prince of Rock... he's built an impressive body of work.

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

The Cramps

The Cramps... Lux Interior and Poison Ivy, along with an ever-changing band, were the progenitors of "horror-billy."  It's rockabilly with a bit of horror comics and latex outfits thrown in.  If the campy, low-brow humor of songs like "Can Your Pussy Do The Dog?" don't give you a chuckle, this isn't for you.

Saturday, May 9, 2020

The Damned

The Damned started off as a straight-ahead punk band and then morphed into having longer, multi-part songs and then into goth-pop and then basically into Dave Vanian's pop/rock project.  They've produced some interesting things in a long career, but nothing quite as essential as the early stuff.

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

The Cult

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

Saturday, April 11, 2020

Thursday, April 9, 2020

Mazzy Star

Light some candles, dim the bulbs, burn some incense, maybe a little opium tea, some cigs... now you're in the place.

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

The Pogues

Every generation needs their very own Irish music revivalists and ours got a great one in the Pogues!

Thursday, March 12, 2020

Simple Minds

Simple Minds have been releasing albums since 1979. Their early years contain a lot of really inventive music, a moody kind of new wave influenced by Krautrock. Then they moved into some edgy, still moody rock albums before finding mainstream success. They're still at it, too, putting out consistently high quality stuff.

Tuesday, March 3, 2020

Dead Or Alive

Dead Or Alive's debut album was a decent new wave entry but in no way foretold that within 2 years Pete Burns would have penned at least 4 classics of the 80s era.  You Spin Me Round has outlasted many, many bigger artists and can still heard constantly in 2020, whether in TV commercials, shows, movies, or any/every 80s themed dance party ever.

Monday, February 24, 2020

Sigur Rós

The perfect collision of Radiohead-esque indie rock and the post-rock of bands like Godspeed You Black Emperor and Explosions In The Sky, Sigur Rós made for one of the most unlikely groups to ever find themselves on American airwaves.

Thursday, February 13, 2020

The Bangles

The Bangles had quite the odd career trajectory.  Originally part of the Paisley Underground in early-80s Los Angeles, they often played gigs with the likes of Dream Syndicate.  By the end of the 80s they had become pop superstars, though none of their biggest hits - Manic Monday, Walk Like An Egyptian, Eternal Flame, If She Knew What She Wants or Hazy Shade of Winter - were written by the group.

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Cat Power

Chan Marshall began making music under the Cat Power moniker in the mid-90s. Her early records were lo-fi, kind of raw indie folk.  She continued in this vein until making a great leap forward with The Greatest, recorded with some veteran Memphis musicians.  After a great bunch of covers, Jukebox and Dark End of the Street, she took a hiatus, returning with a more electronic pop sound.

Wednesday, February 5, 2020


They've disappeared several times in their career, once for over a decade. And then they return sounding just like... Wire.

Monday, February 3, 2020

Primal Scream

If there's a style of music Primal Scream hasn't tried... just be patient, they'll probably get around to it.

Saturday, February 1, 2020


With a name like Poliça, you might expect this group to hail from Eastern Europe, but no... Minnesota.  With 2 drummers, synths, and a female vocalist who uses lots of effects, it's an interesting blend of sometimes otherworldly sounds.

Thursday, January 30, 2020

Rollins Band

Rollins Band was the musical vehicle for Henry Rollins post-Black Flag.  There were 2 distinct eras, each utilizing an entirely different band.  Personally, I think the last few years where Rollins was basically fronting the band Mother Superior was just pure fire and produced balls-to-the-wall intensity and Rollins' most consistently strong material.

Sunday, January 26, 2020


What more could be said about Moby?  He's been prolific, varied, and oftentimes brilliant.

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Massive Attack

Looking back now 20 or 25 years, it's amazing how little influence some subgenres have had on contemporary music in the 21st century.  Grunge?  Madchester?  Faded and forgotten fads.  But Massive Attack still resonate, as their slow beats, often hazy vocals, and thick atmosphere can be heard even now in many contemporary hip-hop, trap, and R&B songs.

Sunday, January 19, 2020

The Men They Couldn't Hang

The Men They Couldn't Hang were Celtic folk-punk before that even was a 'thing'. They were rather unfairly compared to the Pogues. I think they have a pretty different vibe than the Pogues. More folk, less punk. They're still around, too. Check them out.

Tuesday, January 7, 2020

The Mission (UK)

The Spinal Tap of the goth scene, The Mission made some decent music here and there, even if their heavily Zep-influenced songs sometimes crossed the line into outright thievery.

Friday, January 3, 2020

David Lynch

David Lynch, mostly known for his film and TV work, has also done plenty of music, painting an sculpting, as well.