Showing posts from November, 2006

The Not-so Progressive Mars Volta

The Mars Volta Amputechture Universal Records Released 9.12.06 Rating: 2.5 out of 4 Progressive rock is always a risky genre to work with. Naturally, you have to have talent and an unfailing understanding of how to “compose” rock music. In the 70s there were a lot of performers who committed themselves to the painstaking task of making guitar/bass/drums sound refined, suitable for the for the not-so common music aficionado with a passion for Bach , Miles AND Hendrix . A tall order some might say, but a listenership emerged nonetheless, somehow adding miles of wildly perceived time signatures to the chemically addled heads of ex-hippies everywhere. The wild nuances of composers like Frank Zappa , the jazz influence of John McLaughlin & The Mahavishnu Orchestra , King Crimson ’s affinity for mathematically pristine musicianship, Miles Davis’ reviled and misunderstood explorations into adding a dash of James Brown to his trumpet: Rock was growing by leaps and bounds into more t

Better than TV or the Radio…

TV On The Radio Return to Cookie Mountain Interscope Released 9.12.06 Rating: 4 out of 4 Media is one thread of humanity that we all share. As much as we may love or hate television, we’ve all seen the same shows, watched the same news program, caught the same commercials. We all buy advertised goods, believe paranoia-inducing news spots on the potential dangers of cell phone radiation, and somehow get involved in celebrity break-ups. Television’s glowing realities are viral, nesting into brain cells and creating legions of channel surfers that always, ALWAYS, have something to discuss the next day over stationary water coolers and coffee makers. The same can be said for radio, whose monotonous and unimaginative playlists only accent the DJ’s morning banter which, a lot of times, is about what they saw on TV. Not to say that television and radio rarely inform, but their rafts of often mind-numbing programming are sought and uploaded with gusto, overtaking a large percentage of the

I'll be pressing PLAY real soon...

To Whom It May Interest, On tap are reviews for the latest from TV On The Radio , Thom Yorke and The Mars Volta . I'm also playing a little catch-up on Johnny Cash , Helmet and a couple others. Well, a lot of others. The list has expanded immensely and this year has been surprisingly good for music. I'll be back at the keyboard in a little while with headphones on and the volume turned up. Thanks for your patience. Sincerely, Letters From A Tapehead