Sunday, May 30, 2010

The Breeders- Live In Stockholm

The cool thing about fan-club releases is that the content is usually exclusive to it's release and available only to fan-club members. They are CD's that definitely won't show up at your local Wal-Mart or mainstream music sellers, but can sometimes be found at indie record stores or online, so they are rare and usually hard to find.

Live In Stockholm is a live EP that showcases the Breeders at the height of their career with 8 songs from a concert in 1994 from Stockholm, Sweden. This is an excellent quality recording with the band offering up rawer versions of songs from the Last Splash era, but it's unfortunate it's not the complete concert. I'm pretty sure I have the complete concert somewhere in my stacks (I could be wrong), as I remember the banter when Kim Deal talks about making mudslides (drink). The Breeders have had kind of an up and down career, frustrating if you're a fan, but this CD is a must have for any Breeders fan.

Live In Stockholm (1994)
  1. Shocker in Gloomtown - 2:56 (Guided By Voices)
  2. New Year - 2:06
  3. Hellbound - 2:19
  4. Saints - 3:25
  5. I Just Want to Get Along - 2:19
  6. SOS - 1:30
  7. Roi - 2:34
  8. No Aloha - 2:56
THE BREEDERS- Live In Stockholm. rar

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Lemonheads- Fan Club CD

One person that was of great influence in Ben Kweller's solo career was Evan Dando from the Lemonheads. It was one of his ep's, Freak Out, It's Ben Kweller, that caught the attention of Dando and he invited him on tour with him. Jeff Tweedy, Juliana Hatfield and the band Guster also took notice and asked Ben to open for them. The feeling was mutual as I have some live recordings with Kweller doing Lemonheads covers in concert. The Lemonheads are a band that have been around since 1986 with various incarnations and line-ups with the only constant being Evan Dando. Because of these constant changes to the line-up, the band has taken a few hiatus and rumours of their impending breakup are understandable, but with these breaks Dando has continued to perform live, then he eventually records another Lemonheads record. Just before their longest hiatus from 1998-2004, a promo CD available only through their fan club was released consisting of covers, live tracks and acoustic versions of Lemonheads songs. Some of these songs made it onto b-sides, while others were exclusive to this release. For any Lemonheads fan this is a fine collection of songs, though this isn't a proper "official" release, but kind of a odds and ends disc of goodies. LEMONHEADS Fan Club CD (1997) 01. Pin Yr Heart 02. If I Could Talk I'd Tell you (live Madrid) 03. Ride With Me (live Boston) 04. Down About It (acoustic) 05. Live Forever 06. Little Black Egg 07. Fade to Black (live Milan) 08. Divan 09. How Will I Know? 10. Confetti (acoustic) 11. Keep On Loving You (live Maison Rouge) 12. Losing Your Mind LEMONHEADS- Fan Club CD. rar

Monday, May 24, 2010

Radish- Dizzy

The second album by Radish was called Dizzy, released in 1995. Ben Kweller sent a copy of Dizzy to Nils Lofgren, who grew up with Ben's father in Maryland and from there it was passed to his producer, Roger Greenawalt who took the band into the studio to record demos that would be shopped around to labels. After a bidding war there was much hype for the band and it's signing to the majors with Mercury Records. This led to the release of Restraining Bolt and appearances on Letterman, Conan and The Weird Al Show (check out their appearance on the show!!). Dizzy was yet another forward step in Ben Kweller's career, but like Hello it was an independent release that was released with very limited supply. Though I've never seen a copy of Hello or Dizzy, I did find a cover scan of Dizzy to post, but if you have a copy of either album, let me know. Enjoy! RADISH Dizzy (1995)
  1. Chrysalis
  2. Too Personal
  3. Dizzy
  4. Doesn't Know It
  5. Bedtime
  6. All Night
  7. Uncle Jimmy's Theme
  8. I'm Still Here
  9. The Way
  10. Swallow
  11. I Know A Girl
  12. Uncle Jimmy's Theme (Drum Solo)
RADISH- Dizzy (1995). rar

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Radish- Hello

The first thing you notice when you listen to the first track of Radish's Hello, is how young the singer sounds. What is he, 12 or 13 years old? Actually he is, the singer is a young Ben Kweller who was 12 when he formed Radish. Hello was recorded when he was 13, a pretty amazing accomplishment for anyone, especially an eighth grader. This isn't a prefabricated gimmicky act like that Bieber kid, but a talented musician that had a dozen songs under his belt by the time he was nine and won an honorable mention in a songwriting contest sponsored by Billboard magazine. In 1993, Ben Kweller formed Radish with drummer John Kent and bassist Ryan Green (he was later replaced by Bryan Bradford) and played in and around Greenville, TX. They released two independent releases, Hello and Dizzy before they signed to Mercury records and in 1997 recorded the full length album, Restraining Bolt. What I've posted is the hard to find debut from Ben Kweller and his band Radish, Hello, and it gives an early indication of his musical talent that would lead to bigger and better things. It's pretty evident he has the chops and he displays his confident solid songwriting style. The quality of the songs and recordings improve with every release, especially on Restraining Bolt, which earned the band a large cult following in England and they toured Europe several times. I will also post the second Radish album, Dizzy and possibly Restraining Bolt, if there is interest. Please leave me a comment or email me if you want more Radish! Enjoy! RADISH Hello (1994)
  1. Space Boy
  2. Hello
  3. Wooden Window
  4. Leave
  5. Kitty
  6. You Can Run
  7. Whatcha Gonna Do?
  8. Rollercoaster
  9. I Want You To
  10. The Way
RADISH- Hello (1994). rar (I previously posted Ben Kweller's two homemade pre-Sha Sha releases, Bromeo and Freak Out It's Ben Kweller back in January 2009. I think the song links are still active. Check them out here.)

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Faces- Ooh La La Sessions

I noticed a once famous band from my hometown has been in the news recently with a new release called, Oooh La La. The band in question is the Crash Test Dummies who were internationally big for a few years in the early 90's, with such hits as, Mmmm Mmmm Mmmm Mmmm and the Superman Song. Then their commercial success sort of fizzled out, yet Brad Roberts kept pumping out crap through the 90's and 00's. I think they've just released their 8th album this month and for some reason it's getting attention back on this side of the border. The reason I mention all this (I definitely don't want to give them any publicity!), is because their album title (almost) steals it's name from a great album by the Faces. Okay, the CTD's added an extra "o" on Oooh, but it kills me that Brad Robert's might think he's clever to come up with that name on his own. Do not get confused and accidentially buy this album!

Ooh La La was the last album recorded by the Faces at a time when singer Rod Stewart was concentrating more on his solo career. The band acted more as Stewart's backing band during concerts, but even with the innumerable tensions in the band they still pulled it together to record a Face's album. Many consider Ooh La La a disappointment after it followed, A Nod Is As Good As A Wink... (their most successful), but others, like myself, find it their most satisfying listen. These sessions include outtakes, rehearsals and some live tracks featuring some solo Stewart and Ron Wood material performed by the band. Various versions of these sessions have been available, but the complete 20 track bootleg is a much harder find. The sound is crisp and the performances and these versions of the songs are a nice companion to the original release. Download these sessions and buy this album!

Ooh La La Sessions (Last Step)
01 My Fault
02 Flags & Banners
03 Ooh La La
04 Glad & Sorry
05 Silicone Grown
06 Cindy Incidentally
07 If I'm On The Late Side
08 Borstal Boys
09 Just Another Honky
10 Don't Forget To Tell Him
11 You Can Make Me Dance, Sing or An
12 Pool Hall Richard
13 I Can Feel the Fire
14 You Can Make Me Dance, Sing or An
15 You Wear It Well
16 Take A Look At The Guy
17 Jodie
18 I Wish It Would Rain
19 True Blue
20 The Stealer

FACES- Last Step pt. 1. rar
FACES- Last Step pt. 2. rar

Monday, May 17, 2010

Something New Mondays: The Rolling Stones

Tomorrow, the Rolling Stones are re-releasing their classic album, Exile On Main Street on the 38th anniversary of it's original release. They will be releasing 4 different formats of the remastered album, that will include 10 "new" tracks, as well as alternative versions of Loving Cup and Soul Survivor. I have the original vinyl from the 70's and always thought the mix and sound were kind of crappy. I later got (downloaded) a recent CD version and it sounded just as bad, I thought they would have cleaned up the muddy sound, but supposedly these new versions sound a lot better. If that's the case, it would be worth it buy the album again, but with the extra disc. This album is considered by many as the artistic high point of the band's career and I tend to agree. It's one of the few double albums that justifies 2 discs and every song has a sound and style of it's own. The new songs are actually tracks recorded during the EOMS sessions with newly recorded inserts and vocal additions added to the previously unreleased songs. I guess leftovers from 1972 must be better than totally new songs from 2010, so Stones fans will have something new to ponder. Here are the different incarnations of Exile On Main Street available May 18th.
  • CD – Remaster of the original 18-track release.
  • 2-LP – Original 18-track album on two 180-gram heavyweight audiophile vinyl LPs in gatefold sleeve.
  • 2-CD Deluxe Edition – Original 18-track release and 10 special bonus tracks.
  • 2-CD+DVD+2-LP Super Deluxe Package
As a sneak preview, the Stones released a 7" single on Record Store Day with one of the unreleased songs on Exile, Plundered My Soul bw/ All Down The Line. Not a bad song, nothing special, but I'm more excited that All Down The Line doesn't sound as trebly and tinny as the original release.

(removed the song links...sorry!)

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Stars Perform New Album Live!

When a band first performs new material, there are two different reactions from the crowd. Some fans take the opportunity to go get another drink from the bar or use the time to relieve themselves in the bathroom. These fans don't recognize the familiar songs they know and love, so they choose to be ignorant and say to themselves, "I only want to hear the old stuff". The true follower of the band is keen to hear what new material the band has been working on since their last tour and will give the new songs a chance and will be attentive and open.

Stars brought their Five Ghosts tour to Winnipeg last Monday (May 10) and performed their new album in it's entirety, in order and gave their lucky fans an opportunity to assess and listen to the new material. For this mini-pre-release tour, Stars chose to play clubs instead of theatres for a more intimate experience to see and hear the band more up-close and personal. The last two times Stars played Winnipeg, they filled the much larger venues, Burton Cummings Theatre and Pantages Theatre for their, In Our Bedroom After The War tour. The Pyramid Cabaret's capacity is around 300, so tickets were limited and sold-out quickly.

Despite the 8:00 pm start time on the ticket, the band didn't hit the stage until after 10:20, which isn't surprising considering it's a bar (which makes it's money selling drinks) opposed to a concert hall venue. We arrived at the club just before 8:30 and had to stand in a long line outside in the rain just to gain entrance into the club. For some reason, there was photo ID checks for everyone (including myself) and "mandatory" coat checks which seemed to clog up the inside of the entrance, which in turn caused the lineup outside. I forgot to mention, preceding the band, singer Torquil Campbell did a opening DJ set as he was seated with his laptop on stage and "spun" some dance music and tunes he thought he should share. Stars proceeded to perform Five Ghosts in track order and the mindful crowd patiently listened, but it's so hard to gauge their response since most of these songs have never been heard. Their sound seems to be more electronic and a little less poppy (if you can call their music that), so their new album may require a few more concentrated listening before passing judgement. Set two or the second half of the show, featured songs that were voted for by the fans, along with other favourites. The energy of the show was much higher for this set both for the band and the crowd. Fans sang along to the familiar hits and the band's stage show was more tight and spirited. The band was enjoying themselves and they acknowledged their fan's dedication for the past 10 years. Hopefully, they'll be around for another ten!

Pyramid Cabaret

Winnipeg, MB

May 10, 2010

01. Dead Hearts
02. Wasted Daylight
03. I Died So I Could Haunt You
04. Fixed
05. We Don't Want Your Body
06. He Dreams He's Awake
07. Changes
08. The Passenger
09. The Last Song Ever Written
10. How Much More
11. Winter Bones
12. Your Ex-Lover Is Dead
13. The Night Starts Here
14. Take Me to the Riot
15. Elevator Love Letter
16. Heart
17. Ageless Beauty
18. One More Night
19. Calendar Girl

20. Tonight
(tracks 1-11: Five Ghosts album)

This is an audience recording, so the sound isn't perfect. The Pyramid has always had pretty shitty sound, but this actually sounds clearer than when you listen in person. During the first song and during a couple of other songs, stupid girls in front of me chat and talk excessively, which irritated not only me, but always others squeezed in around me trying to listen to the show. I'll talk about concert etiquette another time! Overall, this sounds really good! If you are a fan of Stars, you can preview the new album live, a full month before it's released. I haven't seen any other recordings from this tour so far or on Dime, so this is show is special.

Dimeadozen (FLAC) (members only)
STARS- 2010-05-10. rar (mp3)

(If prefer the FLAC version and you are not a Dime member, email me)

The Archive

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Rilo Kiley- 1st Album

I thought since I talked so highly about Rilo Kiley's earlier albums in an earlier post, I figured it would be fitting to post their very first album. This rare hard-to-find self-titled release was put out by the band independently in 1999 and there was three versions, the first pressing had 8 tracks (and a hidden track), the second pressing reissue featured the same cover, but the track listings was slightly different (9 songs with a different and longer hidden track). The third version was titled, Initial Friend E.P., with 8 songs and no hidden tracks. I'm not sure what version I have (I have a burned disc I made years ago), but it contains all the tracks that appear on all three versions of the CD, including the hidden tracks along with a couple of bonus early mixes of The Frug and 85.

Overall, this early CD is a good (not great) indication of better things to come. It has a certain charm and innocence that originally attracted me to the band. Still, I recommend you check out their next three albums for the full picture.

Self-Titled (1st Album)
  1. Frug
  2. Papillon
  3. Always
  4. 85
  5. Sword
  6. Asshole
  7. Gravity
  8. Troubadours
  9. Teenage Love Song
  10. Glendora
  11. Steve
  12. (hidden track) Rained The Day
  13. The Frug (early mix)
  14. 85 (early mix)
  15. Teenage Love Song (later mix)
  16. (hidden track) Troubadours, The Annoying Noise Of Death
RILO KILEY- 1st CD. rar

Monday, May 10, 2010

Something New Mondays: Stars- "Fixed"

Tonight, I'm off to see Montreal band, Stars unveil songs from their upcoming album, The Five Ghosts, due to be released June 22nd. They are currently on tour, sort of an album pre-release tour of smaller Canadian clubs (US, as well) in support of the new disc. These shows will see Stars perform the new album in it's entirety during the first set, take a short break, then play a short set (encore) of fan requests (on-line voting) from their earlier albums. So far only a handful of Canadian cities have previewed the album, and only the single, Fixed has been available so far for fans to sample. It should be really interesting for their fans to hear these songs for the first time and it will give the band an opportunity to see their fan's reactions.

I feel fortunate to have tickets in hand for this unique show (I bought them the second they went on presale), as it has been sold out for a while, in due part because of the small intimate venue, the Pyramid (capacity 300). I am disappointed though, because I couldn't take my daughter (who is a bigger Stars fan than me) because it is a 18+ show, something that wasn't mentioned on the presale ticket information. I should have suspected this because the Pyramid is a bar, but it has hosted all-age shows in the past. I will attend with recorder in pocket and hopefully I can get a decent sounding recording to post on this blog...stay tuned!

STARS- Fixed mp3

Sunday, May 09, 2010

Shadowy Men At A Shadowy CBC

Remember the cool theme song from the original Kids In The Hall television series? In case you didn't know, the song was called, Having An Average Weekend by the Toronto band, Shadowy Men On A Shadowy Planet, who also supplied the background and going to/coming back from commercial musical segments. Their short catchy surf-guitar instrumentals gave the show a certain style and atmosphere that provided the Kid's show an edgy feel. I even bought their cassette, Savvy Show Stoppers, that contained Average Weekend and a bunch of other great grooving toe-tapping songs. The only thing that sometimes bugs me about instrumental bands is that I keep expecting the vocals, the songs sometimes feel like extra long intros to songs. But then again, vocals might completely ruin a good instrumental band and might not be a good match at all.

What I've posted is a live session on a CBC radio broadcast, probably Brave New Waves from the late 80's or early 90's. I vaguely remember hearing them on the program around this time, though it might have been another appearance (They did a number of interviews and live segments on CBC). Sorry, I don't have the broadcast date or the track listing, so you'll have to listen to the whole thing and if you can provide me with more information, please let me know.

"Brave New Waves"
CBC Studio
Radio Broadcast (Date unknown?)

(FYI: The tracks are numbered 11-25 because they are taken from a source that had other songs on it, ignore it.)

Shadowy Men On A Shadowy Planet- CBC. rar

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Rilo Kiley @ Bimbo's 2004-09-23

For some reason, I've been re-listening to a lot of Rilo Kiley lately. I've discovered my new co-worker is a bit of a fan and we've discussed how disappointed we were with their last album, Under The Blacklight. I'm a pretty big fan of Jenny Lewis and her band and I started to dig the band before they became more widely known and I must admit, they sound like a different band with the release of their major label debut. I don't know what happens to bands when they gain a wider audience, they somehow lose that "indie-sound" edge, if there is such a thing, and start to sound like every other band on generic mainstream radio. The band used to be refreshingly unique with their quirky lyrics and charming beautiful ballads, but instead the band gets dragged down by it's the slick production and produces a predictable commercial sound. There are some decent moments on Under the Blacklight, but if you want to hear Rilo at their best (according to me, anyways), give a listen to The Execution Of All Things, Take Offs And Landings and More Adventurous. I don't know what the future for Rilo Kiley holds, it's been 3 years since the release of Blacklight and Jenny has been busy with her solo projects, so fans should revisit their older work.

I'm posting one of my favourite Rilo Kiley shows from 2004. This concert was recorded in San Francisco at Bimbo's during their More Adventurous tour, so the setlist features many songs from that album and Execution Of All Things. The concert recording is soundboard quality, so it sounds great and the band is in top form. If you're a fan of Rilo Kiley or want to sample the band live, this is a fine place to start.
(p.s. Hey Sumi!- Jenny Lewis is NOT Huey Lewis's daughter!)

Bimbo's 365 Club,

San Francisco, CA

September 23, 2004

1) It's A Hit
2) Good That Won't Come Out
3) My Slumbering Heart
4) More Adventurous
5) Portions for Foxes
6) Three Hopeful Thoughts
7) Absence Of God
8) A Man/Me/Then Jim
9) Don't Deconstruct
10) Pictures of Success
11) Small Figures In A Vast Expanse
12) Love and War
13) I Never
14) Does He Love You?
15) Simply Irresistable
16) The Execution Of All Things
17) A Better Son/Daughter

RILO KILEY-2004-09-23 Bimbo's, SF. rar
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