Various and Sundry Goings On About Music:
- The new Strokes single is out, and I find it catchy as all get out. It's not quite as loose as "Last Night" or "Reptilia", but it doesn't disappoint as a single. Listen to it here.
- Tom Waits will be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame this March; that we already knew. What we now know is that Neil Young will be doing the inducting. An interesting choice, because I can't think of any crossover between the two aside from the perfunctory connection one can make about them both being folksy songwriters. The choice was also surprising because most assumed Keith Richards would be a no-brainer--the Stones' guitarist has collaborated with Waits on several occasions, and the two are good friends.
- In what seems like an immensely contrived move that is also kind of awesome, Bob Dylan will perform with the Avett Brothers and Mumford and Sons and the Grammys in what's being billed as a "Salute to Acoustic Music". It's still not enough to make me sit through an awards show--thanks to Youtube, there's no need to sift through all the crap to hear three to five minutes of good music.
- Last week I made excuses about why I hadn't written this month's Best of 11 yet. Well I did the introduction (scroll down), but that's all I had time for this week. Look for parts 2-5 next week.
- The White Stripes - s/t
- Dr. Dog - Fate
- Blitzen Trapper - Furr
- Broken Social Scene - You Forgot It In People
- Charles Mingus - Mingus at Antibes (Live)
- Sigur Ros - ( )
- Toro y Moi - Underneath the Pine
- Bright Eyes - The People's Key (February 15)
- Drive-By Truckers - Go-Go Boots (February 15)
- The Low Anthem - Smart Flesh (February 22)
- Toro y Moi - Underneath the Pine (February 22)
- Felice Brothers - Celebration, Florida (March)
- Strokes - Angles (March 22)
- Cass McCombs - WIT'S END (April 12)
- Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit - Here We Rest (April 12)
- Fleet Foxes - Helplessness Blues (May 3)
- Okkervil River - I Am Very Far (May 10)
- TV On The Radio - Types of Light (Spring 2011)
- Bright Eyes (Asheville, March 5)
- The Avett Brothers (Savannah, March 30)
- Iron and Wine w/Low Anthem (Savannah, April 23)
- The Fleet Foxes (Atlanta, May 14)
I used to listen to classic rock pretty much exclusively. This was back in high school when I was keen enough to recognize that most of the new stuff on the radio was garbage, but I had no way of knowing that shit like Yankee Hotel Foxtrot and Kid A was happening. So I pretty much stayed on the Clear Channel Classic classic rock station and listened to the same 100 songs that every classic rock station plays. There were a few bands I couldn't stand, and one of them was Heart. "Magic Man" is still one of those songs that makes me cringe. There were several others.
Anyway, cut to ten years later, and I'm a snobbish douchebag who runs this blog and pretends to be some kind of bigshot. So I was looking for a suitable Tube for this feature, and stumbled across the Decemberists playing a Heart song. It was back on the Hazards of Love tour, so the band had a few female vocalists in tow (My Brightest Diamond's Shara Worden and Lavender Diamond's Becky Stark.) Sure enough, the ladies took on Ann Wilson's impressive vocal part and, for the most part, made it work. Stark's voice doesn't hold up to Worden's massive vocals (the same goes for their contributions on album), and Chris Funk's guitar playing is a little off at times, which leads me to believe they learned the song in a pinch. Still, it's pretty cool to see the band try something like this with largely positive results: