Dr. Tongue never had it so good
Much like Hypnotic‘s 3-d album cover, the music of Muck and the Mires comes straight at you. Kim Fowley’s production is sharp and thin – he usually just throws the songs out there without fanfare (“Cocoa Beach” does get a roll of surf). When the songs are strong enough, like the garage crunch of “Crush on Me” and the killer opening track “Doreen”, it appears to be a marriage made in heaven. But when it doesn’t, it exposes a song like “Hang All over Me” for what it is; a pedestrian pop rocker that disappears from memory almost immediately. But that’s the beauty of an album of short pop songs – mental floss is three minutes away, and there are far more hits than misses.
Many bands ape The Beatles, but these guys cleverly went all the way back to Hamburg (and if “Hamburg Time” doesn’t get your mop top shimmying, there’s something wrong with you). But they don’t stop there – “Wipeout” is embedded in “Cocoa Beach”, “Do It All Over Again” subtly buries the theme from The Munsters in its melody, and “Treat Me Right” sounds like a teenaged Dave Edmunds grave-robbing Scotty Moore-era Elvis. The title track should be the theme song for a revival of Where the Action Is. I don’t think this is the best Muck album, but Fowley has captured a rawer, live sound, accentuated by deeper, raspier vocals from Evan Shore.
So what the hell, this isn’t rocket science. Do you wanna have fun or not? Pop this in and turn it up before that hot chick who wants to dance leaves the party.
(This review is published in Bucketfull of Brains #73, available now. So what are you waiting for? Go to Bucketfull of Brains and get your copy.)
Visit Muck and the Mires at their website and on MySpace
Filed under Music, Reviews
Don't worry - they can't read it
BEATING A DEAD HORSE…So let me get this straight. An album that comes out in 2003, and is itself a compilation of music even older than that, somehow can get nominated for Album of the Year? And an artist who hasn’t released a new piece of music in years and even dies midway through the year is a nominee for Entertainer of the Year? Entertained how? By continuing to provide creepy tabloid fodder? Does no one understand the concept of rest in peace? Bad enough Elvis is buried in his backyard like a house pet, now we gotta ghoul it up again with his sorta son-in-law? (I think I just puked in my mouth a little…) That’s what happens when an award is based on album sales. Maybe Dark Side of the Moon will win next year.
CHEATING, UH OF COURSE…And before you tell me that this award-nominated album – unreleased as of yet, mind you – contains new songs, it only took a day to debunk that charade. And not only were these tracks older material, the choice for first single “This Is It” was issued without credit to the real songwriter. “We just found it in a box” said the label chairperson. (I will resist the obvious joke here). So pants down, that loveable family said “oops” and decided to pay the guy fifty percent of the royalties. Wonder if that admission would have come out if it wasn’t someone as famous as Paul Anka? Nice work, Sony.
TWEETING, A DEAD FORCE?…And oh, what will I do without the constant barrage of inanity from Miley Cyrus and Kate Moss and Courtney Love and all of those nameless skanks from reality shows? Probably the same things I’m doing now, since I don’t let my life get disrupted by the most inane fad since the Pet Rock. At least the Pet Rock just sat there and left you alone instead of constantly pebbling “I feel solid right now” or “I’m still here where you left me”. Stop abusing the technology, people. And if your undeserved fifteen minutes is up…go away! Like Darren Frost says, make your millions and then get lost. (<— hilarious, but not for the workplace.)
Ah, I feel better. Sorry for the purge, but it’s hard to try to check in with the entertainment world and not feel the immediate need to bathe and use mental floss. Amazing that stuff like that is getting millions of hits while the insurance industry and the government are about to screw up health care in America again and we just sit by and watch. (Sorry…I promised this was a politics free zone.)
Finally – and sadly – a blue cheer and salute for the late Dickie Peterson, the heart and soul of Blue Cheer. The band survived off and on over the years but never recaptured the fire that started with their cover of “Summertime Blues” in the 60s. Still they recently tossed a couple of interesting platters our way and even made ears bleed in a small club in my town. So the next time you hear thunder from above, it might be a bass player.
Dickie Peterson and Blue Cheer wiki
Put Guitar Hero down and listen to the real thing
If we didn’t see the marketing forecast incubating with the debut of the CD format, the master plan has become abundantly clear in the years that followed. Sell the consumer something, then reformat it and sell it again, then repackage it and sell it a third time, then remaster it and sell it a fourth, then create a special edition and sell it a fifth, and so on. Granted, bonus tracks appear and sonic quality improves, and those who hesitated ever buying in continue to get more and more tempted to make the leap.
But the marketing wizards also know there are collectors and completists who must own every version and format, for they perceive a gaping hole if they do not. As someone who has been known to dabble in this obsessive behavior, I thought collectors learned their lesson with posthumous Elvis and Hendrix releases, or the life and death of colored vinyl, but I was wrong. (Example: I just got an email for a reissue of Get Yer Ya-Yas Out at the $50-60 mark, and while I’m a big fan of the Rolling Stones, I own the album and the CD and the DVDs of Gimme Shelter and Sympathy For The Devil. How much more do I need?)
But this is special – these are The Beatles, after all – and the sonic quality is supposed to be phenomenal. Boomers who might have purchased Beatles 1 to capsulize their albums and 45s could decide that now is the time, and we certainly see an entire generation of musicians and fans looking backwards for inspiration these days. So hell, if it really takes Rock Band and Guitar Hero to bring these generations together, so be it.
The world has enough sad stories and horrific events. So if 09/09/09 is Global Beatle Day, I’m okay with that. And just in case that’s not enough…on September 10th – a/k/a “one after nine-oh-nine” – this ships.
uh-HUH. uh-HUH, yeah.
…and this one had his title bestowed upon him by his accomplishments. He was, simply, The King. Unlike a later entertainer who made up his own titles, shamefully appropriating a royal moniker for himself. Hell, he even misinterpreted a birthday cake from MTV as an award for Artist of the Millennium. (If there were such an award, even Even Presley wasn’t that – I’d have to vote Frank Sinatra or Charlie Chaplin). But I’m not going to kick a man when he’s down.
If you don’t know much about Elvis Presley at this point, you probably don’t care enough to learn about him. So I provide the links below as a courtesy for those of you who wax nostalgic this weekend and want to pick up an old album or hit Netflix up for a movie. Hard to believe it’s been 32 years since Elvis died at 42; he’s gone but will never be forgotten.
But if you visit a certain donut shop in Minnesota, look closely…
This one’s for you, Al Kohler.
Kurt Russell played Elvis, and well.
Uhh…so did Andy Kaufman – amazing!
Not The King