Tag Archives: 4 Stars

RS #387: Wu-Tang Clan, Enter the Wu-Tang Clan: 36 Chambers


Wu-Tang Clan, Enter the Wu-Tang Clan:36 Chambers

Release Date: 1993 Previously Owned: Yes First Time Listen: No
"These guys ain't nothin' to fuck wit. By Source, Fair use, Link
Impressions: I've always liked Wu-Tang but I never became a fanatic. Let us enter the 36 Chambers here... "Bring Da Ruckus" is a ('90s term coming up) slammin' opener that establishes their mix of kung fu samples, brash choruses "BRING THA MUTHAFUCKIN RUCKUS," hard beats, and nine, that's … Continue Reading ››

RS: 388: Various Artists, The Indestructable Beat of Soweto – Vol 1


Various Artists The Indestructable Beat of Soweto- Vol. 1

Release Date: 1985 Previously Owned: No First Time Listen: Yes
"I would say, yes, this beat is quite indestructable " by Source. Licensed under Fair use via Wikipedia.
Impressions: Looking forward to this one. Well, not speaking the language, it loses a little in translation for me. But it's chockful of catchy, quirky tunes that are light, funky and don't have a ton of "world music" baggage. Rubbery basslines, … Continue Reading ››

RS #390: White Stripes, Elephant


White Stripes Elephant

Release Date: 2003 Previously Owned: No First Time Listen: Yes
"I pledge allegance to the red, white and black album cover... " by Source. Licensed under Fair use via Wikipedia.
Impressions: Well, even though it's been played to death..."Seven Nation Army" is a real winner. I must confess it's pretty undeniable. What's not to like? I mean, that massive riff... dummmm dum dum dudumm! It's perfect. Jack and Meg White are like the proprietors of … Continue Reading ››

RS# 407: The Clash, Sandinista!


The Clash, Sandinista!
Release Date: 1980 Previously Owned: Yes First Time Listen: No
"Italian mobster/Shoots a lobster/Seafood restaurant gets out of hand"
Impressions: I'm going to lay it down now: the Clash could be is probably my favorite band of all time (I rate The Replacements as 1A.) Even so, I'm surprised that their somewhat infamous sprawling triple-album follow-up to London Calling made this list. Since it's so long, let's hit play and get started… Hard to imagine a better opener than the funky, almost-rap … Continue Reading ››

RS #415: Van Halen, Van Halen


Van Halen, Van Halen

Release Date: 1978 Previously Owned: Yes (on vinyl) First Time Listen: No
Van Halen, Van Halen
So many joints have been rolled on this cover...
Impressions: Van Halen doesn't exactly fit into my musical wheelhouse, but I secretly find them pretty awesome from time to time. Don't tell anyone. Let's put on their debut record here… Opens with the thump thump thump of Michael Anthony's Jack Daniels bass guitar and kicks into gear with the spare, somewhat menacing yet fun-loving "Runnin' With The Devil." Their pattened brand of metal-flavored pop/rock (or is it pop/rock-flavored metal?) … Continue Reading ››

RS #416: Tom Waits, Mule Variations


Tom Waits, Mule Variations

Release Date: 1999 Previously Owned: Yes
"I didn't marry I man. I married a mule," Kathleen Brennan, Tom Waits' wife
Impressions: Tom Waits is a good candidate as any to be immune from the dreaded late-career album doldrums. He always seemed like a old guy on the inside with his whiskey and cigarette rasp, beatnik/bluesy subject matter and general craggy demeanor, so naturally it would follow that could age nicely into his persona. He never really went away, but Mule Variations at the time was well regarded as a "comeback." … Continue Reading ››

RS #419: Portishead, Dummy


Portishead,  Dummy

Release Date: 1994 Previously Owned: No First Time Listen: No
Portishead, Dummy
This album is best heard in Cinemascope.
Impressions: Dummy is of those albums that somehow made a stir with both DJ electronic music types and regular civilians when it first came out twenty years ago(!) Not an easy trick to pull off. Let's put it on and see what all the fuss was about… Opens in typically spooky fashion with "Mysterions." Everything is there from the drop: Geoff Barrow's muted, tasteful hip-hop beats, Adrian Utley's retro spy guitar, Beth Gibbon's ethereal torch crooning, all served with a … Continue Reading ››

RS #420: Buddy Holly & The Crickets – The “Chirping” Crickets


Buddy Holly & The Crickets,  The “Chirping” Crickets

Release Date: 1957 Previously Owned: No First Time Listen: Yes
Looking sharp, Crickets.
Impressions: Early nerd rock and roll. Let's do this… This album blasts to life with "Oh Boy!" and then the rumbling, much covered "Not Fade Away." Holly, who was 21 when he recorded this, has a real nervous energetic delivery that gives the songs a little edge. Love the choppy percussion of "Not Fade Away." Their mix of R&B, rockabllly and country is so natural and set the stage for, well, everybody. Songs like "That'll Be The Day" and … Continue Reading ››