Wednesday, June 8, 2011

King - The Story

Good old-school R&B, three songs worth. I wanna hear more!

Friday, June 13, 2008

Elton John's One Night Only

Released in 2000, this is hardly indicative of the fabulous in-concert experience the flamboyant entertainer still provides. We just saw him on tour, and he sounded a lot better than anything captured here. Not terrible, but the only track I want to hear again is "I Guess That's Why They Call It the Blues" with Mary J. Blige.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Led Zeppelin's How the West Was Won

It took me long enough to catch up with this mammoth 3-CD live set. Wildly overpraised at the time of its release - sure, it's better than Song Remains the Same, but so are Yesshows and Chicago IV Live at Carnegie Hall - this offers some fine performances, but the simultaneously released DVD (entitled simply Led Zeppelin) is superior. "Moby Dick" and "Dazed and Confused" are particularly unendurable.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Dolly Parton's For God and Country

The only misstep in a run that produced three fine pseudo-bluegrass efforts on the Sugar Hill label, a kick-ass live CD & DVD, a fun covers album, and the recent, excellent Backwoods Barbie. Recorded and released at the beginning of Shock and Awe, this is a well-meaning but incredibly hokey affair. Still, I never doubt Dolly's sincerity, and while "Ballad of the Green Beret" isn't much of an improvement over Staff Sergeant Barry Sadler's original, I'll take her version of "God Bless the U.S.A." over Lee Greenwood's any old time.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

The Remains' Movin' On

One reason Barry Tashian and his band's 2002 comeback album works so well is that it's not really a comeback album after all. Few knew about the Remains' 1967 debut until it was reissued last year. This is fine rock and roll with a slight twang - songs about girls, cars, delivered with punch...what more could you want?

Monday, June 9, 2008

Tom Waits' Mule Variations

Late '90s gem is accessible enough to get the non-Waits fans interested, though there is plenty of weird stuff like "Eyeball Kid" and the spoken-word masterpiece "What's He Building?" Best of all is the achingly gorgeous "Picture in a Frame."

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Rebel Meets Rebel's Rebel Meets Rebel

Inspired collaboration between David Allan Coe and members of Pantera. I recently saw Coe do a half-assed one-hour show at a local club, and while he didn't do any of these songs, he did have a heavy metal guitar apparently bequeathed to him by Dimebag Darrell.