needlebeamcassette

i've been in the bin.

Degüello

ZZ Top - DegüelloZZ Top - Degüello

What better way to ring in the weekend than with some ZZ Top, right? Well… you probably have some things higher on the list, and i probably do to, but at least they are on that list. Texan blues-rock boogie doesn’t get much finer than ZZ Top. And this, their 1979 release and 6th studio album, is one of their best, with A Fool For Your Stockings being one of my top 10 favorite songs.

When the wife-to-be and I were living in Seattle a while back, I went on a huge ZZ Top phase. I remember it because she likes them, but doesn’t want to listen to them all day. At least that is what i am told. I say pshaw to that. Anyway, while on said kick, i saw this staring at me in the $3 dollar bin someplace. I bought it. I brought it home. I played it all day. Give a listen. Hello Friday, nice to meet you.

ZZ Top - A Fool For Your Stockings

ZZ Top - Cheap Sunglasses

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It’s Heavy in Here

Eric Matthews - Its Heavy In HereEric Matthews - It's Heavy In Here

I got hooked on Eric Matthews when my brother put ‘My Morning Parade’ (from the album The Lateness of the Hour) on a mix-tape. I thought it was the most interesting thing being made at the time and wore out the tape within that span of the reels and eventually picked up the Compact Disc of his sophmore release somewhere.

It was hard for me to find this, his 1995 debut, in any format but i eventually saw it in the front of the $1 record stack below the stand-up bins in Princeton Record Exchange. I would have shed a tear at its predicament, seeing as it is a pure gem that should not be relegated to looking at trouser legs and sneakers of people looking at those pricier albums up-top, but i snatched it up and walked out ecstatic. This was at a time in early 2000’s when it was unsure if Eric Matthews would ever even have a follow up album after his 2nd release. I’m glad he forged on eventually.

Eric Matthews - Fried Out Broken Girl

Eric Matthews - Hop And Tickle

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Silver Pistol

Brinsley Schwarz - Silver PistolBrinsley Schwarz - Silver Pistol

This is the 1972 output from the Nick Lowe-fronted pub rock band, Brinsley Schwarz. A fine album by all accounts, it rarely takes a ride on the turntable. No reason why it shouldn’t, it just doesn’t stand out within the shelves. It should though. I should make an effort.

A discount bin find, you can definitely hear the influences on this album - The Band, SF psych like Country Joe - but it has the uniqueness of Lowe’s vocal stylings. A nice feel-good listen.

Brinsley Schwarz - Silver Pistol

Brinsley Schwarz - Ju Ju Man

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Climbing!

Mountain - Climbing!Mountain - Climbing!

Climbing! is the 1970 debut release by the hugely underrated Mountain. Formed by Leslie West and Felix Pappalardi, the band gets its name from the solo debut of West (still on the hunt for that one) and they played their 4th ever concert at Woodstock (though they do not appear in the film, sadly).

One of the best vocals in rock history, in my opinion, West’s raw, yet controlled blues gruff coupled with hot guitar and backed by pummeling Pappalardi bass make this not only Mountains finest (again, in my opinion) but also one of the greatest debuts by a band (my opinion, i believe).

This - like many of my lps - came to me from a discount bin. But - like many of those same lps - that does not speak of the quality of the music or the condition of the record. Anyway, here’s each side’s opener:

Mountain - Mississippi Queen

Mountain - For Yasgur’s Farm

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Delfonics

The Delfonics - DelfonicsThe Delfonics - The Delfonics

This is the third and self-titled album by the Philadelphia Soul heavyweights, The Delfonics. With all but one of the tracks having been penned by Thom Bell and/or William Hart, this stands as their crowning achievement or original songwriting and a perfect mix of Soul and Pop.

I picked up this Philly Groove release (looks slightly different than the picture provided here - i don’t want to go through the whole picture taking process right now :) ), a handful of years back mostly on the strength of Didn’t I (Blow Your Mind This Time). There are a couple other gems and i remember liking the album more previously, don’t know if i am just not in the mood currently. I am sure i’ll spin this again some time this year and fall back in love.

Slip into your Monday.

The Delfonics - Didn’t I (Blow Your Mind This Time)

The Delfonics - Think About Me

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Moonshine

Bert Jansch - MoonshineBert Jansch - Moonshine

I tend to group Bert Jansch along with Leonard Cohen. It might be unfair (to both of them) as it might be an easy link based on their folk leanings, but it is more than that. There music is like this inpenetrable bubble of intellect that at times i seem to get simply because i dig it, but then i step back and realize that there is probably something i am missing. The kicker is that i don’t care about missing it ‘cause i am taken aback. Does that make any sense? Probably not. I’ll stop.

Was on a Pentangle kick a while back and saw this, Bert Jansch’s 1973 output, in a discount bin and was piqued. My mood has to be right to take it in, but Moonshine is a stellar album. Plus Tony Visconti plays bass on it. C’mon. And then there is the drum work on Oh My Father which seems oddly in and out of sync with this electric quitar solo going in the back. Affecting.

Bert Jansch - Ramble Away

Bert Jansch - Oh My Father

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The Band Plays On

Backstreet Crawler - The Band Plays OnBackstreet Crawler - The Band Plays On

Another album purchased solely on the dudes of the cover (seem to be going through these a lot lately). Saw the album at one shop, was curious but left without it as i found other lps that needed to come home with me. Went back a little while later and it was gone. Saw it in another shop in another state a couple months later and figured there was a reason some one snatched the other copy… so i had to get it.

This is the 1975 debut of Backstreet Crawler which took its name from the the ex-Free, Paul Kossof’s debut title. A good effort with some rocking pub blues and top-notch guitar stylings, but all-in-all doesn’t see the turntable too often. No real hooks, but i offer you my favorite off the album:

Backstreet Crawler - New York, New York

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Rumours

Fleetwood Mac - RumoursFleetwood Mac - Rumours

Aside from two tracks - Songbird from A and Oh Daddy from B - i have heard ever other track on the radio… multiple times… times a thousand. Big hits. And obviously there is a reason. This album drips with pop emotion. A true classic.

I pretty much wore through a Cassette Tape of this album when driving across country many moons ago. When and where i picked up the vinyl i can’t recall. Does it matter?

First 2 tracks of the second side:

Fleetwood Mac - The Chain

Fleetwood Mac - You Make Loving Fun

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What About Me

Quicksilver Messenger Service - What About MeQuicksilver Messenger Service - What About Me

I first heard the title track form this, the 1970 studio output and 6th album by the mighty Quicksilver Messenger Service, as a cover by Richie Havens. I was blown away. I was probably 17 or so (jeebus, that is half my life) and was just struck by the lyrics. Resonated at the time, and Havens’ amazing musicianship obviously didn’t hurt.

As time went on, i got more and more into SF psych and this was the first Quicksilver Messenger Service album i went to on any format. Based on that title track alone. I won’t pick a favorite between Havens’ cover and the original, because both are astounding. And the album doesn’t stop there, it only starts there. What About Me is my favorite by Quicksilver Messenger Service and i think stands the test of time.

Here is that title track and the 8 track, both penned by Jesse Oris Farrow aka Dino Valenti aka Chet Powers:

Quicksilver Messenger Service - What About Me

Quicksilver Messenger Service - Good Old Rock And Roll

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Groove

Nikki Sudden & The French Revolution - GrooveNikki Sudden & The French Revolution - Groove

Picked up this, the 1990 pressing on Giant Records, while on a trip back in Colorado visiting my brother. Seemed to snatch up a couple Nikki Sudden efforts and some other oddities (to be later posted). Having worked, at the time, with a huge Jacobites fan, i was familiar of Sudden, so was happy to take this home.

Behold the wonder of nasal swagger.

Nikki Sudden & The French Revolution - Great Pharoah

Nikki Sudden & The French Revolution - Too Bad For You

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