Here’s a video of a song called “Boarding Pass” from the Railsplitters, one of the more auspicious new bluegrass groups I’ve heard in a while. The Boulder, Colorado quartet—Lauren Stovall, Dusty Rider (real name!), Peter Sharpe and Leslie Ziegler—are all noteworthy songwriters and singers. They convey the enthusiasm of eager newcomers along with the sort of polish you’d expect from consummate professionals. The tracks on their eponymous debut album are typically more upbeat than this…Continue
Posted on January 7, 2014 at 4:30am — 1 Comment
I’m a bit late to this party—In Time came out last February—and what a party I’ve been missing. The Mavericks packed quite a punch by the time they disbanded nearly a decade ago, but they’ve never sounded better than they do on this ambitious reunion album.
The improved results notwithstanding, the recipe is the one that the Miami-based band has been using all along: mix Latin, Tex-Mex and rockabilly with a whole lot of bar-band rock and roll, and add a bit of…Continue
Posted on December 24, 2013 at 9:30am
The world’s first and best-known so-called rock opera also probably ranks among the world’s most frequently reissued albums. First released as a double LP in May 1969, the Who's Tommy has since reappeared literally dozens of times on assorted deluxe, remastered, repackaged and audiophile LPs, CDs, SACDs and DVD-Audio discs, sometimes with alternate takes or previously unheard snippets of music. You can also find concert versions of the opera on a 2010 expanded edition of…Continue
Posted on December 16, 2013 at 5:00am — 1 Comment
When Tom Russell released his first collection of outtakes and obscurities in 2002, he indicated in the liner notes that “there is easily enough strong material for additional releases—the second volume is pretty much in the can already, if this one is successful.” Maybe the can got lost because it took 11 years, but we finally have that follow-up and the tracks are as noteworthy as promised. As with volume one, in fact, it’s hard to believe that these frequently brilliant…Continue
Posted on December 10, 2013 at 5:00pm — 1 Comment
The Velvet Underground and Nico, the group’s magnificent March 1967 debut album, was a million miles from the popular music of the time, which largely explains why it sold only about 5,000 copies (including one to me) in the first few years after its release.
If the group cared, it didn’t exactly show it with the follow-up. White Light/White Heat, which appeared at the end of January 1968, sounds even further removed from anything mainstream America would…Continue
Posted on December 5, 2013 at 5:00pm — 1 Comment