Thursday, November 08, 2018

Bob Mould: Workbook (1989)

The debut solo record from former Hüsker Dü front man, Bob Mould, was a true surprise. There is a real change of sound. He mellowed, I guess, though not entirely.
"Instead of relying on raging guitars, Mould explores a wide variety of styles, from pure pop ("See a Little Light") to reflective folk laced with cellos. It's an astonishing array of styles, and the songs are among Mould's finest." [source]
I did see Bob in concert, though only once. It was a short concert, but he played with amazing intensity and energy. I assumed that he would have been completely exhausted by the end of the show.

Wednesday, November 07, 2018

Elton Motello: Jet Boy Jet Girl (1979)

So, Elton Motello is somehow the name of the singer and the band. I guess that's like Alice Cooper, though that really became his name. The singer - Elton Motello - is Alan Ward. The first single was Pogo Pogo (1977) though that was later changed to the flip side (1978), Jet Boy Jet Girl, and then that later morphed into a single with Jet Boy Jet Girl on the a-side, and Jet Boy Jet Girl on the a-side and Apocalipstic on the b-side (1979). I have a later 12" pressing without Pogo Pogo.

Anyway, Jet Boy Jet Girl is awesome. I'd never really heard such explicit lyrics:
Can you tell what's on my mind?
She's with him, it drives me wild
I'd like to hit him on the head
Until he's dead
The sight of blood is such a high
Ooh, hoo, hoo, hoo
He gives me head

We made it on a ballroom blitz
I took his arm and kissed his lips
He looked at me with such a smile
My face turned red
We booked a room into the Ritz
Ooh, hoo, hoo, hoo
He gives me head

Jet boy, jet girl
Gonna take you 'round the world
Jet boy I'm gonna make him penetrate
I'm gonna make you be a girl
Ooh, hoo, hoo, hoo
Jet boy jet girl

And though I'm only just fifteen
I like to kick, I like to scream
And even if I have a kick or two in bed
When I'm with him it's just a dream
Ooh, hoo, hoo, hoo
He gives me head
But, this tune was apparently the first openly gay punk song. Anyway, the backing track was taken from Ça plane pour moi, a track by Plastic Bertrand.

But, check out this lame comment from a user review on Allmusic:
Elton was one of the first rock artists to openly express his homosexuality through music, but likely did the cause more harm than good with the release of his cheesy debut disc "Victims of Time", which prominently featured the crass and tasteless gay anthem "Jet Boy Jet Girl". [source]
I cannot agree with that statement.

Monday, November 05, 2018

Elton Motello: Victim of Time (1978)

I can't believe I skipped Elton! Here is, out of order. 

My Canadian pressing of this release dates to 1979, rather than 1978. I guess it took a year to make it across the ocean. The only other countries to press this LP were Belgium, Germany, Sweden, Yugoslavia, and Australia. This records contains he aforementioned Jet Boy Jet Girl. This is a damn cool record.

Thursday, November 01, 2018

The Motors: Greatest Hits (1981)

This record is either titled Greatest Hits or The Motors Greatest Hits. I prefer the former because the latter should be The Motors' Greatest Hits or The Motors's Greatest Hits. Oddly, Virgin released a CD compilation in 1995 called the Airport: Motor's Greatest Hits. Nice try.

Anyway, the record collects the greatest hits of The Motors.

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

The Motors: Tenement Steps (1980)

Tenement Steps was the third and last record from The Motors. This was the first Motors record I owned. Bram Tchaikovsky had already left the band for a solo career, after only one record with the band. I always really loved the sound of this band.

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

The Motors: Approved by the Motors (1978)

Yes, the motors! I've always liked the sound of this band.
"In a contemporary review for Rolling Stone, Jim Farber praised Approved by the Motors as "a near-perfect LP of pure, pulverizing pop in the best Sweet, Slade, and Pilot tradition, cutting through the cuteness of that genre with Nick Garvey's and Andy McMaster's dynamic dual vocals… the band sings sweetly about S&M activities, disarming the entire subject in the same endearing manner as Cheap Trick joyously trivializes suicide." [source]
All of you Motors fans will know that Bram Tchaikovsky had joined the band by this point.

Monday, October 29, 2018

The Cure: Torn Down Mixed Up Extras 2018 (2018)

I made the risky decision to avoid the picture disc of this release and hope that a black vinyl edition would be released, and it was. As it turns out, the picture discs are still easily obtainable, but I have heard issues about the quality. And, generally, I prefer black viny.

As a Cure fan, I will more or less buy everything the band releases. I am missing a few items, but I have a solid collection. I have only had a chance to listen to this once all of the way through, so I can't really comment on the mixes. I liked Mixed Up very much, so I will probably come to love this as much.

Morrissey: This is Morrissey (2018)

I bought the record with only a cursory lance at the track listing. I knew it was a compilation, but what an odd compilation it is. Have a look at this really awesome statement from Nitrous.McBread on Discogs:
Utterly bizarre choice of scraps from beneath the table of the increasingly laughable has-been. Parlophone seem to be doling out a bunch of industry sweeteners, allotting royalties-as-favours to various chums, cohorts and back-orifice management types. This is record company machination par excellence and has virtually nil to do with any pretence of offering a coherent set of songs in any kind of thought-out sequence. This album serves two purposes: firstly, persuading marginalised Morrissey fans (looked upon now as the deluded Scientologists of the music firmament) to part with yet more cash to further feather the nest of their curdled fuhrer; and secondly, to make the lyrics of The Smiths' "Paint A Vulgar Picture" even more staggeringly prescient. [source]
Now, I wouldn't go as far as to say that, but I will say that I fail to understand the song choices.  It starts off well enough, but then we get Have-a-Go Merchant. What? And, the Mael Mix of Suedehead, which is truly awful. The record starts strong and ends strong, but to argue that "this is Morrissey" is a truly mystifying statement.

Friday, October 26, 2018

Morrissey: Low in High School (2017)

I did not run out to buy this record when it was released. I wasn't even sure I wanted to buy it, but I saw it online for about $8 (plus $5 shipping) so I decided to get it. I ended up with the limited edition, pressed on green vinyl, from the UK.

I find some of Morrissey's political views to be problematic, especially his support of Brexit. I've never been able to figure out if he believes this, or if he is trolling. I'd like to believe the latter, but who can say? I do like some, but not all, of these tunes.

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Morrissey: World Peace is None of Your Business (2014)

I have a number of Morrissey albums on CD that I will likely never own on LP. That is either because they are either way too expensive or because I am not interested, probably because I already have the CD and find that I don't listen to them very much. But, I did pick this up after it was released. Somehow, I ended up with the first UK pressing, rather than the US pressing, which one would have thought would have been more accessible in North America. Someone is trying to sell one of these for $164 on Discogs, which is far far more than I paid. Even the cheapest is about $55, which is more than double what I paid.

I think we are in an age where it is uncool to listen to Morrissey. All I seem to see is backlash. This is one of the things I hate about social media. Any public post about pretty much any well-known band or artist is filled with hate. The world hates The Smiths, Morrissey, Radiohead, U2, and even the Beatles. It boggles the mind, but I will say that I hate Coldplay and Nickelback :) I lack the energy to post a negative comment on a post about a band I hate. Why would anyone take the time to slag Radiohead? Do they have nothing better to do?

As uncool as it might sound, I don't mind this record. There is one thing I do not like, however, and that is the jacket. It is a tad taller than most, and it will not fit on my shelf.

Thursday, October 04, 2018

Morrissey: Years of Refusal (2009)

Discogs notes that: "The USA LP was sold with a bonus 7" single of "I'm Throwing My Arms Around Paris" (European edition) in select stores. However many copies were also given away with purchases of the cd, or with no purchase at all." Sadly, my copy did not have the bonus 7". Although I am not really into 7", it would have been nice to have it.

My short review would be something like, Morrissey's ninth record is pretty good. I'd say that it is one of his stronger later records. It's not The Smiths, but it's enjoyable.

Monday, October 01, 2018

Morrissey: First of the Gang To Die (2006)

First Of The Gang To Die was the second single from Your Are the Quarry, an album I have on CD. It's a pretty good song, I'd say. The b-sides are: My Life Is A Succession Of People Saying Goodbye,
Teenage Dad On His Estate, and Mexico.

Friday, September 28, 2018

Morrissey: Take a Bow (1994)

This is a bootleg, recorded at various places. Here is the track list with dates and locations, where available:

Side A

Wayward Sisters (used to introduce Morrissey concerts in 1991 and 1992)
  1. My Love Life (10 October, 1991)
  2. We Hate It When Our Friends Become Successful (7 June, 1992)
  3. The More You Ignore Me, The Closer I Get (Top Of The Pops, 3 March, 1994)
  4. King Leer (Steve Vizard Show, 9 September, 1991)
  5. You're The One For Me, Fatty
  6. Certain People I Know (The Tonight Show w/ Jay Leno, 9 August, 1992)
Side B
  1. Glamorous Glue
  2. Suedehead (Saturday Night Live, 14 November, 1992)
  3. Sing Your Life
  4. There's A Place In Hell For Me And My Friends (The Tonight Show w/ Johnny Carson, 14 June, 1991)
  5. We Hate It When Our Friends Become Successful
  6. You're The One For Me, Fatty (The Late Show, 5 May, 1992)
All three pressings (yellow, red, or purple) are from the US. My version is on yellow vinyl. The sound reflects the source, in some ways, but I would say that poor mastering diminishes the experience.

I paid $8 for this item. Discogs has made it impossible to figure out resale values for bootlegs now that the sire has banned sales of unofficial releases. Slowly, sales figures and for sale listings are disappearing, though one can still add an unofficial item to a collection. Discogs hasn't caught up to this one yet, so I see that there one copy in on offer for about $45 Canadian.