The Raw and the Cooked.jpg

  • FINE YOUNG CANNIBALS: THE RAW AND THE COOKED:  1989: 4 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: I haven’t listened to this album or even thought of the Fine Young Cannibals in years- odd how they had this big hit album- it went to #1 in both the US and UK.3 Top 20 singles in the US- Ever Fallen In Love, She Drives Me Crazy, Good Thing and another single that failed to hit- I’m Not The Man I Used To Be- and they never followed up on it. A fun listen.


  • THE KINKS : EVERYBODY’S IN SHOWBIZ: 1972: 3 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: A double album- part studio album/ part live album. The studio album is filled with stories about being on the road- Ray Davies at this point was starting to write more concept album type material. Not a favorite of mine but it’s not a bad album. Favorite song- Celluloid Heroes.

True Meanings (Deluxe Edition)

  • PAUL WELLER: TRUE MEANINGS: 2018: 4 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: The Modfather turned sixty in 2018 and released this album noted for its acoustic sound. Weller never does the predictable- and his career as front man of The Jam, Style Council and his now 14 album solo career has been criminally neglected here in the USA. This is an album of reflection and mellowing- with just a guitar and orchestrated arrangements. The album has been compared in style to Nick Drake’s work.

A piece of black plastic on a light pink background

  • LOW: DOUBLE NEGATIVE: 2018: 5 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: I have heard of this group before but never actually HEARD them. Uncut magazine recently named this their album of the year for 2018 and I had to hear the album. I will be listening again. It is best summed up by Pitchfork’s critic Marc Hogan said “static prevails and flickering tones are almost untraceable to the instruments that made them,” and that this sound “captured [2018’s] pervasive dread like nothing else.” Interesting stuff. Repeat listens for sure are coming up- and digging into the Low catalog. Slow core, dream pop is what Low is listed as.

A photo of the Beatles – Ringo, Paul, George, and John – looking down over a stairwell railing

  • THE BEATLES: PLEASE PLEASE ME: 1963: 5 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: In ranking the 12 Beatles studio album openers- [not going to consider the Yellow Submarine soundtrack} I would rank I Saw Her Standing There- 3rd out of the 12 album opening tracks.

A black-and-white photograph of the Beatles' faces on a black background with the band members wearing black turtleneck sweaters

  • THE BEATLES: WITH THE BEATLES: 1963: 5 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: In ranking the opening tracks- while I do like It Won’t Be Long-it ranks at #11 of the 12 Beatles opening tracks.

A grid of 20 black and white head shots of the Beatles – John, George, Paul, and Ringo

  • THE BEATLES: A HARD DAY’S NIGHT: 1964: 5 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: A Hard Day’s Night is a great album opener- I rank it the second best out of 12 Beatles album opening tracks.

A photo of the Beatles – George, John, Ringo, and Paul

  • THE BEATLES:  BEATLES FOR SALE: 1964: 5 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: No Reply is a very good song but as far as openers go- not a great opening track out of the 12 Beatles studio album openers this is 12th. Not the potboiler song you want as the first track.

Low - Things We Lost in the Fire.jpg

  • LOW: THINGS WE LOST IN THE FIRE: 2001: 5 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: After listening to their new album earlier today I thought I’d give a listen to an album that is considered one of their best- it is a lot more assessable than the new one- more lyrical and you can understand the lyrics- which isn’t to take away from Double Negative- it’s just different. I will explore Low’s discography but am going to concentrate on these two albums for a while.

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  • R.E.M.: DEAD LETTER OFFICE: 1987: 4 STARS OUT OF 5 STARS: Rarities and b-sides and covers from 1981-86 period of their career. A fun listen- amazing how in such a short period of time they accumulated such quality material- an EP and 5 albums and this odds and sods collection. 3 covers of The Velvet Underground are highlights.


    • I had only ‘read’ of LOW- Paul Weller was the front man of The Jam- a huge huge group- in the UK- but one of those bands that was non existent over here. Weller is still huge in the UK- weird how some artists are like that. His music I guess is too English.

    • I think he is a very British artist-as far as subjects etc.. I know he does tour the US at times but after 40 years just never hit it big. His stuff is available here etc.

  1. We had some British diplomat neighbors a few years ago who were thrilled they got to see Weller at 1500 seat club here in DC – they said in England he plays arenas.

    • I buy the monthly UK music magazines- Uncut, Mojo and Q– i bet every year at least once Weller is on the cover of each of those magazines. Its interesting to see what artists get a lot of publicity- and are certainly big there who are pretty low profile here. I am sure it goes the other way too.

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