Tag Archives: 5 stars

RS #383: Talking Heads, More Songs About Buildings And Food


Talking Heads More Songs About Buildings And Food

Release Date: 1978 Previously Owned: Yes First Time Listen: No
This album cover is made up entirely of smaller Polaroid photos. By Source, Fair use, Link
Impressions: Okay, now here is a second album! Not to mention one of my favorite album covers and album titles of all time. In some ways, More Songs About Buildings and Food really more like their actual debut. Talking Heads 77 was slightly … Continue Reading ››

RS #386: Steely Dan, Pretzel Logic


Steely Dan, Pretzel Logic

Release Date: 1974 Previously Owned: Yes First Time Listen: No
Impressions: Holy crow, it's been a while since my last update! Let's Pretzel...The Dan seems kind of polarizing, so I'll just say up front that I'm a big fan. I've mostly heard their songs broken up by a mix or as a part of Citizen Steely Dan boxed set. So we'll see how these songs work … Continue Reading ››

RS #413: Minutemen, Double Nickels On The Dime


Minutemen, Double Nickels On The Dime

Release Date: 1984 Previously Owned: Yes First Time Listen: No
Minutemen, Double Nickels On The Dime
Love how all these subtle things came together on this cover. Mike Watt's look on his face in the rear view mirror. The speedometer reading 55 mph. The San Pedro sign in the background.
Impressions: Mea culpa: I really dig these dudes. So, I'll try not to slobber too much in this review. Simply put, there's never been anyone quite like them, outside of maybe, maybe, Wire (coming up at #412!) Let's get this started, since this … Continue Reading ››

RS#434: Big Star, #1 Record


Big Star, #1 Record

Release Date: 1972
Previously Owned: Yes
Big Star, #1 Record
"#434 Record" didn't have quite the same ring to it.
Impressions:  I don't care if this is indie-hipster bait, this album is amazing. I probably like it too much to look at objectively, but I'll try my best… "Feel" chugs in with a great riff building toward a '70s power-pop groove. It's super catchy, but still seems like the whole song is going to fall apart, just like Chris Bell vocal ( "I feel like I'm dyin!") After that, the gorgeous heart-rending Alec Chilton ballad "The … Continue Reading ››

RS #439: Sam Cooke, Live At The Harlem Square Club 1963


Sam Cooke, Live At The Harlem Square Club 1963

Release Date: 1985 Previously Owned: No First Time Listen: Yes
Sam Cooke, Live At The Harlem Square Club, 1963
Where have you been my whole life?
Impressions: I've heard of this album, but never listened to a minute of it, mostly because radio stations rarely play live albums and, I guess, some laziness on my part. Let's put it on… Right off the bat, the atmosphere is pretty great; sounds like a hot crowd in a smaller, more intimate setting that most concert albums. Sam "Mr. Soul" Cooke and his band … Continue Reading ››

RS #447: Stan Getz and Joao Gilberto, Getz/Gilberto


Stan Getz and Joao Gilberto, Getz/Gilberto

Release Date: 1964 Previously Owned: Yes (on vinyl)
I wish I could go on a vacation as perfect as this album.
Impressions: I'm sure many would disagree, but I'm glad to see some jazz represented on this list. Trouble is, it seems like there are a lot more than the five or so jazz albums that are on the list worthy of being added. So, should they have just kept jazz off entirely, or settled for the token entries? A tough call. Either way, Getz/Gilberto would have been tough … Continue Reading ››

RS #462: R.E.M. – Document

R.E.M.- Document
R.E.M's album covers always looked like a the work of a really amazing graphic design student who actually got a paying gig.

R.E.M., Document

Release Date: 1987 Previously Owned: Yes. On vinyl.
Impressions: I started liked R.E.M back in junior high when my cool music friend Matt, who hipped me to Hüsker Dü and The Clash, also got me into R.E.M.'s Life's Rich Pageant. Michael Stipe's mumbly, cryptic singing took me a while to get warmed up to, but I started to enjoy their and catchy Big … Continue Reading ››

RS #473: The Smiths -The Smiths


The Smiths, The Smiths

Release Date: 1984
Previously Owned: Yes
Even the model in the album cover is super depressed.
Impressions: Let's get this out of the way immediately: Morrissey isn't everyone's taste. I'm not even sure he's my taste, but I do love The Smiths. There's something about the sweet-and-sour balance of Johnny Marr's casual guitar brillance and Morrissey's literate moaning that works for me. Their consistent catalog and somehow side stepping of the dreaded '80s sound (probably by avoiding keyboards and dated references) further seals the deal. Their songs come out as timeless, … Continue Reading ››

RS #475: Elvis Costello and the Attractions – Armed Forces

The fake-Pollock cover that the US fans are familiar with.

Elvis Costello and the Attractions, Armed Forces

Release Date: 1979
Previously Owned: Yes
Impressions:  It's hard to imagine now, as Elvis' presence nowadays is merely tolerated or ignored by most people (his collaboration with The Roots sounds great on paper, but that sinking feeling is there.) When Armed Forces came out back in '79, Elvis was considered "cool," or at least he was at his personal coolest. He also seemed kind of dangerous, like a permanently-jilted version of Buddy Holly on speed. This angry, young … Continue Reading ››