September 2018 Comics, Poetry, and Reviews by


Band discography. Listen/stream on Bandcamp, CDBaby, & Spotify

The Alienist
Galen Ayers

babysue comix #344
babysue comix #345
babysue comix #346
Ron Bonfiglio*
The Bottle Kids*
Charlie Clouser

The Eyebrows*
Liz Frame and the Kickers
Gin Blossoms*
Hildur Gudnadottir*
Kinky Friedman
The Innocence Mission
Dan Israel

Jesus comic #64
Jeremiah Johnson
Kleenex Girl Wonder*
Leland and the Silver Wells
The Lemon Clocks*
The Lords of the New Church

Love Ghost
Luna Honey
Mad Monk Squad

The March Divide*
Merel & Tony
Mr. Robot*
Mike Nicolai*
Nobody's Girl
The Quick
Allen Ravenstine
Craig Safan

The Slocan Ramblers

The Special Pillow
JP Soars
Thomas Stajcer
Stone the Crows & Maggie Bell
We Are Muffy*
Tony Joe White

Young Gun Silver Fox
Yuka & Chronoship
*Top Picks

Additional Items Received

September 2018 Thought.

The best things in life are the absolute worst.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

The Alienist - Music from the Television Series: Music by Rupert Gregson-Williams (CD, Lakeshore, Soundtrack)
The Alienist is a 2018 television series that goes back in time (1896) to tell the story of a crime investigation centered around catching a ritualistic killer. Based on the novel of the same name written by Caleb Carr, the series stars Luke Evans, Daniel Bruhl, and Dakota Fanning and has been well-received by critics and television fans. The music for The Alienist was created by Rupert Gregson-Williams who has previously recorded music for the films Hotel Rwanda, Hacksaw Ridge, Over the Hedge, Bee Movie, Zookeeper, and many more. The tracks composed for The Alienist effectively capture the feeling of going back in time while simultaneously leaving the listener with a strange eerie feeling. Williams plays double bass, baritone violin, and cello and is joined by Anthony Clarke on guitars and banjo, Peter Gregson on cello and electric cello, and Patrick Johnson. The technology utilized in creating these tracks is one of the key variables that makes them work. Folks involved in manipulating the sound include Glen Nichols, Forest Christenson, Andy Glen, and Alistair Hawkins. We've yet to see this series but if all indicators are correct, this is one of those must see programs. Chilling tracks include "Streets of New York," "Politics of Policing," "Man of the Flesh," and "The Alienist (Main Title)."

Annihilation - Music From the Motion Picture: Music by Ben Salisbury & Geoff Barrow (CD, Lakeshore, Soundtrack)
Unusual and challenging instrumental music from Ben Salisbury and Geoff Barrow. If you think all soundtracks have a common sound and theme, think again. These guys have come up with music that breaks through all kinds of boundaries. In creating music for the motion picture Annihilation, these musicians have simultaneously created an album that can be heard and appreciated on several different consciousness levels. These twelve tracks will take you to places you may never have been before. Delving into different genres and making it all sound seamless and cohesive is no small feat. At different times, listeners may think they're listening to experimental music...or modern classical...or ambient...or simply sound presented as music. The overall mood here seems to be one of peculiar unease...the kind of feeling you get when you know something strange is going to happen but you don't exactly know what or when. It's great when artists like these guys can create music for major motion pictures, because it just shows how far things have come over the past few decades. So much creativity happening here, and it's presented in such a way that a wide variety of listeners can appreciate it. Regardless of whether you even see the motion picture or not, this is an album that you really need to hear in order to understand it. This hour long wild ride features cool complex compositions like "What Do You Know?", "Disoriented," "The Watchtower," "Lighthouse Chamber," and "Annihilation." Subtle, heady, and disorienting in so many ways. Highly recommended. TOP PICK.

Galen Ayers - Monument (CD, Bombinate, Folk/progressive/pop)
The daughter of Soft Machine co-founder Kevin Ayers, Galen Ayers chose a different path in finding her voice in the world of music. Unlike most children of famous artists who quickly gravitate to a world where they will be immediately embraced, Galen initially went in different directions in order to find her place in the world. But her father's influence in her life eventually took precedence, and it was only then that she decided to record an album. Ayers made the wise decision to take off in her own musical direction, rather than plow into a career writing and recording progressive rock like her father. Monument is a soft and smooth spin, featuring reflective folk/pop tracks laced with subtle threads of ambient music. This is an impressive debut, regardless of the parental connection. Galen has a really cool smooth voice that is immediately genuine and inviting. And while her songs have an overall familiar sound, it's difficult coming up with possible influences. Written during the two years following her father's death as a way of working through the grieving process, these tracks don't come across sounding sad or depressing. Instead, they seem inspired and uplifting. Our guess is that this album is the beginning of what will be a long and rewarding musical career. Precisely executed tracks include "You Choose," "Morning Song," "U-Turn," and "Monument."



Stop playing
Destroy the
Never obtain another ball


Rob Bonfiglio - Trouble Again (CD, Damask, Pop/rock)
Attention all fans of classic pop and rock. There's a very good chance you are going to instantly fall in love with Rob Bonfiglio's music. Rob is one of those musicians out there who is so insanely good that you wonder why he's not already hugely popular. But the good news is that, at least among folks in certain circles of enlightened listeners, he already is. And it's no wonder. On the very first spin, to our ears Trouble Again sounds very much like a greatest hits collection that would take other artists years to create. And when you consider the fact that he's a one man band writing, playing, recording, and singing everything himself...well then, you begin to realize that Bonfiglio truly is a musical genius. A quick reference point for those who need it. Most folks probably know Rob from when he was in the 1990s band Wanderlust. But a reference really isn't necessary here, because his solo career has now eclipsed the fame he achieved years ago. Trouble Again is Bonfiglio's fifth full-length solo album (he has also released an alternate acoustic version titled Acoustic Trouble). As soon as you hear the power chords in the opening track ("Passenger Seat") you'll probably feel as if you've suddenly entered power pop heaven. Rob's songs are as good, or in many cases better, than all those classic pop artists you already know and love. The one big difference is that all of these tracks are brand new and recorded to absolute perfection. If you ever loved hit songs by artists like Steely Dan, Electric Light Orchestra, Todd Rundgren, The Cars, and The Beatles...this album is bound to be an instant new favorite. Ten superb tracks that are immediately familiar and catchy in the best way possible. Our initial favorites include "Passenger Seat," "Spread This Feeling," "Tears," and "Hey Blue." Highly recommended. TOP PICK.

The Bottle Kids - Let Me In On This Action (CD, Rock Indiana, Pop/rock)
Like a lot of other folks, we went totally nuts over the last album from The Bottle Kids. The tracks on Such A Thrill were so instantly infectious that we played the album totally into the ground. We've been waiting for the follow up ever since, and it was worth the wait. Cut from the same general fabric and focusing in even more on the overall sound, Let Me In On This Action is another absolute HIT. The Bottle Kids is the one man band created by Eric Blakley. This guy has an incredible knack for writing catchy upbeat pop. The best word we could use for this guy's music is... inspired. There's so much energy and excitement here. The pure feelgood nature of the music bleeds into the minds of those fortunate enough to hear it and will leave them forever changed. Blakley records his pop tunes using only the most basic instruments, so you won't find any clever uses of current technology creeping into the mix. This fellow has a voice that's perfectly suited for power pop, and the harmonies are spot on every single time. If you're a fan of hard driving power pop, you'll definitely want to pick up both Bottle Kids albums. Action features thirteen tracks that beg to played again and again and again. Our initial favorites include "When You Come Around," "Her Heart is Much Worse Than Her Bite," "The Only Heart That I Can See," "Tell Her That You Mean It," and "She Put the Rock In Roll." Once these songs enter your consciousness, you will be hooked for life. Recommended. Top pick.

Charlie Clouser - Saw: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack Anthology, Vol. 1 (CD, Lakeshore, Soundtrack), Saw: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack Anthology, Vol. 2 (CD, Lakeshore, Soundtrack)
The first and second in a series of albums featuring music from the Saw motion pictures. Vol. 1 features thirty-four tracks from Saw through Saw IV, while Vol. 2 presents thirty-two tracks from Saw V - Jigsaw. These days Charlie Clouser is a major contender in the world of motion picture soundtracks, and a lot of that success can be attributed to the music he created for this series (in addition to the fact that he also played keyboards in Nine Inch Nails). Other more serious perfectionists out there in the world have criticized the first two albums in this series because some of the tracks have been this may or may not be of importance to you. We love horror and suspense films. But while we appreciate the talent and creativity in the Saw movies, we must admit that we just don't care for torture...and that's ultimately what they're all about. Fortunately, folks who can't take or don't want to witness the harsh visuals can now appreciate Clouser's music on a different level. Hearing these tracks without seeing the motion picture, listeners might mistake this for experimental or ambient music. Clouser is a real mastermind of sound and his compositions ultimately pull the listener in and don't let go. There's a lot to take in here. Listening to these albums is like stepping into a haunted house and not knowing where you are or what's going on. Cool tripped out tracks include "Tape Deck," "Wilson Steel," "Bed Ripper," "Just Begun Your Test," "Hello Sam," "Steam Room," "Doctor Gordon," "Replica Lair," and "Laser Collars."

Dialeto - Live With David Cross (CD, Moonjune, Progressive rock/jazz)
The fifth full-length release from Brazil's Dialeto. For this album, the band teamed up with ex-King Crimson guitarist David Cross. The results are stunning. If this was released on vinyl, this would be a double album. The thirteen tracks on Live With David Cross clock in at close to seventy-eight minutes. In addition to Bartok compositions, the album also features four Crimson covers. Dialeto is comprised of Nelson Coelho, Fred Barley, and Gabriel Costa. These four musicians seem to follow one another with exact precision. Recorded in 2017 in Sao Paulo, Brazil, you can tell the band members and the audience were having the time of their lives. This album should appeal to just about anyone who loves progressive rock and/or jazz. The playing is highly stylized and speedy. These musicians play with such focus and fluidity that it all sounds very simple (but we know it most certainly was not). The sound quality is exceptional from start to finish. Unfortunately, most of us were not at this concert in person so...this is the next best thing. Captivating tracks include "Romanian Folk Dances 3," "An Evening in the Village: 10 Easy Piano Pieces No. 5," "Exiles," and "Starless."

The Eyebrows - Volume (Independently released CD-R, Pop)
Cool melodic pop fueled by driving rhythms and gripping fuzzy guitars. The band The Eyebrows is a cool rockin' group based in Charlotte, North Carolina. Volume is their debut full-length release, and it's chock full of nifty rockin' music. The cool guitars are pushed way up in the mix, which we found immediately appealing. So many twenty-first century bands seem to have the curious innate desire to push the guitars in the background (which we will never ever understand). The Eyebrows is the band comprised of Jay Garrigan, Shawn Lynch, and Darrin Gray. Produced by musical genius Mitch Easter, Volume has a nice direct warm sound that is never hampered by too many instruments and too much studio polish. Songs are the what matter most, and principal songwriter Garrigan comes up with some true winners. The overall vibe of these tracks reminds us in some ways of The Chainsaw Kittens. If you seem to always be on a search for bands who come across sounding inspired and real, you're almost certain to get a major kick out of Volume. Played with true passion and style, these are songs that will inspire a whole new generation of underground pop/rock fanatics. Kickass cuts include "Red Dress," "Not the Same," "She Can't Stand Me," and "Tonight's Your Night." Recommended. Top pick.

Liz Frame and the Kickers - Sparrow in a Shoebox (CD, Opt, Country/pop)
Simple and direct feelgood country/pop music played with passion and style. Vocalist Liz Frame has a voice that recalls the late great Patsy Cline. But unlike other vocalists who seem to mimic Cline, Frame remains in her own unique space and the similarities just seem to be accidental. Sparrow in a Shoebox features nine smart tracks, arranged to perfection...with the central focus being Liz's voice. This lady can really transmit thoughts and feelings when she sings. Her backup band is just perfect. The Kickers are Patrick Chamberlin on lead guitars, Lynne Taylor on vocals and bass, and Pete Walsh on vocals and drums...along with additional instrumentation from Duke Levine, Tim Phillips, Pete Tannitto, Ken Clark, and Ben Alleman. If you like tasteful country/pop and/or modern Americana with heart and soul, you're almost certain to fall in love with these tracks. After hearing this, we can't help but think that Liz and her band knock the socks off their fans in concert. Truly effective cuts include "Sparrow in a Shoebox," "Little Brown House," "Grown Children," and "I Don't Worry No More." Smart resonant stuff that resonates.

Gin Blossoms - Mixed Reality (CD, Cleopatra, Pop)
After retreating from the world of recording for a few years, Gin Blossoms return with one of the best albums of their career. Hard to believe it was almost twenty-five years ago when the band made a major splash with their hit album New Miserable Experience. The album spawned not one but two hit singles ("Hey Jealousy" and "Found Out About You"). Recorded with the legendary duo of Don Dixon and Mitch Easter, Mixed Reality sounds like it's chock full of potential hits. Formed in Tempe, Arizona in 1987, Gin Blossoms is now comprised of Robin Wilson, Jesse Valenzuela, Bill Leen, Scotty Johnson, and Scott Hessel. One of the many things that sets this group apart from others is the fact that four of the five members are songwriters. That explains the diversity of the material. But what's more impressive is how all of the songs fit together to form a cohesive whole. This music might best be described as feelgood pop or escapist pop. And that's because when you're listening to the music, you tend to forget about other things happening in the world and in your own life. That's one of the cool things about music. It really can make you forget about a whole lot of stuff that really doesn't matter. But back to the humorously-titled Mixed Reality. Great tunes, precise arrangements, players who obviously still get a kick out of making all adds up to an album that's one helluva great spin. Nifty tracks include "Break," "Face the Dark," "Girl on the Side," "Shadow," and "Mega Pawn King." Recommended. Top pick.

GrandEvolution - Tell Me Why (Independently released CD-R, Pop)
We rarely hear bands from the state of Rhode Island. But if this album is any indication of what's going on there, that is indeed regrettable. If you love/loved all the great underground guitar-driven girl pop/rock groups in the United States in the 1990s, Tell Me Why just might be your favorite new album. Based in Providence, Rhode Island, GrandEvolution is comprised of Sarah Kenyon, Scott Kenyon, Gregory Bromberg, and Ray Celona. Along with several friends lending additional talents and support, these folks present nine well-crafted intelligent tracks with true substance. All of the songs were written by Sarah, a young lady whose skills will probably be in high demand in the coming months and years. These folks are doing everything right. They present their songs simply without using unnecessary elements that get in the way of the main melody. The playing is tight, yet relaxed. And the overall vibe is strangely calming and intoxicating. Totally groovy cuts include "Hey Drama Queen," "Ghost," "Destroy," and "Stranger." Produced, engineered, and mixed by Chris David, Tell Me Why is a strangely compelling experience that will stand the test of time.

Hildur Gudnadottir - Sicario: Day of the Soldado - Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (CD, Varese Sarabande, Soundtrack)
We're not sure if motion picture soundtracks are getting stranger and stranger with each and every passing year...or if we're just drawn to those that are the most peculiar and odd. In any event, there are some really bizarre albums coming out lately offering soundtrack music that really takes you to other universes and beyond. This is one of those cases. Already a favorite among motion picture critics, Sicario involves FBI agents and the war against drugs along the Mexican border. Considering the nature of the story, we would never have expected soundtrack music like this. Iceland's Hildur Gudnadottir is a young lady whose creativity seems to know no bounds. The compositions she recorded for this motion picture could/can easily stand on their own without the visuals. This short album (just under thirty-seven minutes long) might best be described as modern experimental mood music. There's a certain tenseness and unease in these tracks that is striking and perplexing. At this point in time, there are relatively few ladies creating music for film and television. As such, Gudnadottir is definitely paving the way for scores of new artists who will ultimately be following her lead in the future. She's hasn't just created music for a movie here...she has successfully expanded the idea of what can be considered a soundtrack. Erie and moody, these tracks could just as easily fit within the confines of a horror soundtrack. Wonderfully innovative and unusual, this is a soundtrack that will stand the test of time. Bizarre tracks include "Attack," "The Kidnap," "Alejandro Saves Isabelle," and "Survivors." Top pick.

Gurrumul - Djarimirri (Child of the Rainbow) (CD, Skinny Fish Music, Traditional/world/progressive)
In all the years we've spent listening to music, we've never heard anything quite like this before. Contrary to what that statement might lead you to believe, this album is neither ultra-strange nor is it atonal noise. Djarimirri (Child of the Rainbow) presents an unusual world where traditional music is combined with classical create an overall sound that is curious and otherworldly. Although you may not have heard of him, Gurrumul was/is the highest selling indigenous musician of all time in Australia. Sadly, he passed away in 2017. Thus, this album is the last thing he recorded. If going out on a high note is the deal, then this man apparently reached one of his peaks as he was nearing the end of his time on earth. Combining traditional sounds and chants from Yolngu life with the cerebral sounds of classical and ambient music, Gurrumul managed to come up with a sound that bears little or no resemblance to anyone else. There's a wealth of music to take in here, as these twelve tracks clock in at over seventy minutes in length. If there's a single word we would use to describe this album that word would be...spiritual. If you like music that takes you to a higher lever, you won't do better than this. Deeply rewarding in so many ways and also exceedingly calming and pleasant.

Kinky Friedman - Circus of Life (CD, Echo Hill, Pop/folk/Americana)
Over the past few years, some of the most unlikely folks have suddenly reappeared in the world of music. But until this year, few would have predicted that the world would be treated to a new album from Kinky Friedman. Released on his own Echo Hill label, Circus of Life is Friedman's first album of new material to be over forty years (!). Kinky and his new music are already being welcomed with open arms by music fans around the world. Giving little thought to the idea of commercial appeal, this time around this talented fellow just decided to record whatever he felt like. Hearing this, you'd never know Friedman had retreated from music for several decades. He picked up right where he left off, apparently relying on pure instinct, intuition, and inspiration. Life features twelve reflective tracks, presented simply without unnecessary fanfare. Produced by Brian Molnar, these cuts feature only the essential ingredients necessary to get the point across. At the heart of these compositions are lyrics that were obviously written by an honest guy who isn't interested in playing games. Well-crafted tracks include "A Dog Named Freedom," "Jesus In Pajamas," "Song About You," and "Sayin' Goodbye." But wait...there's more. In addition to releasing this album, Friedman has also begun touring and playing live again. In fact, he's already played a whole slew of shows across the United States. With Brian Molnar as his opening act, you can bet that Friedman will still have a dedicated following. (Molnar is not only a producer, but a recording artist as well). Welcome back, Kinky. You've made a lot of folks very, very happy this year.

The Innocence Mission - Sun on the Square (CD, Badman, Dreamy pop)
Aaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhh...such a nice surprise to receive this one, as we've been big fans of The Innocence Missions for many years. These folks never ever disappoint their listeners. Once again they've hit the target dead center with Sun on the Square. When the band originally got started in 1984 they were playing alternative pop. But over time the sound transformed into something more cerebral and dreamy, thus making their later recordings their most inviting and rewarding efforts. It's been awhile since the band released a new album. Sun on the Square picks up right where they left off, offering superb, pensive, and intricate tracks that instantly spark the imagination. Karen Peris and Don Peris have a true gift, in that their music transcends the medium of pop music. They present thoughts and ideas that most folks should be able to relate to...and then manage to communicate those ideas in a way that is genuine and real. Karen and Don have released so many wonderful albums that it's difficult to pick a specific favorite. Sun on the Square is right up there with their very best. The songs (and particularly the lyrics) are reflective and substantial. And this time around they've really outdone themselves with the arrangements. These intricate tracks were recorded with acute attention to detail, as all sorts of instruments weave their way into the overall sound. Once again, the vocals are just out-of-this-world. A purely positive experience in so many ways, Square is an album that will stick with you for years to come. Calm intelligent tracks include "Records From Your Room," "Look Out From Your Window," "Light of Winter," "An Idea of Canoeing," and "Galvanic." Heady and dreamy stuff that is cerebral and direct. Highly recommended. Top pick.

Dan Israel - You're Free (Independently released CD, Pop)
Totally cool and catchy smart melodic guitar driven pop, delivered with passion and style. Sometimes the best medicine is music that just makes you feel good. And if that happens to be the case, you might just find yourself feeling elated listening to the latest album from Dan Israel. Although this is our introduction to this man and his music, he's no newcomer to the world of music. Far from it. You're Free is this talented fellow's fourteenth (!) full-length release. Based in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Israel writes songs that seemingly come direct from his heart and soul. You won't hear any gimmicks here. And the latest twenty-first century sounds can't be found. This album was created using traditional instruments, and the main focus is on songs. The cover art is excellent. Standing in front of a beautiful sunset is a large transistor radio, and an ape is reaching up to touch the speaker. Quite a few friends offered their talents to these recordings. In addition to Israel, the album features skillful players David J. Russ, Rich Mattson, Mike Lane, James Tyler O'Neil, Peter J. Sands, Katie Gearty, Jillian Rae, Dave Hill, Jenny Russ, Paul Odegaard, and Randy Casey. If you dig good solid singer/songwriter pop, there's a very good chance you'll get a major charge out of You're Free. Cool feelgood cuts include "Gets You Through It," "Long Gone Dream," "If I Didn't Have You," and "Porch Storm."

Jeremiah Johnson - Straightjacket (CD, Ruf, Blues/rock)
Sizzling hot blues rock from Jeremiah Johnson. After about two decades of making music, this talented singer/songwriter/guitarist seems to be hitting a peak in his career. Straightjacket is the result of many years playing, writing, and recording. Johnson has truly paid his dues, and it shows. He plays with some of the best/blues rock musicians out there. His band is comprised of Benet Schaeffer on drums, Frank Bauer on saxophone and backing vocals, and Tom Maloney on bass. When these four guys play together, they create a wall of sound that is solid and impenetrable. All four are tight, tight, tight on their instruments. And when they get in a groove they stay in it. Not only can Johnson play guitar like holy hell, but he's also got a great raspy voice that really drives these tunes. Straightjacket features eleven original compositions and one well-chosen cover (Alvin Lee's "Rock n Roll Music to the World"). Thanks to the taste-conscious ladies at Devious Planet and the true purveyors of blues rock (Ruf Records), we're becoming more aware of modern blues/rock artists around the world. Listening to this, we can only hope that we're fortunate enough to catch Jeremiah and his band in one of their blistering live concerts sometime in the near future. Some of our initial favorites on this album are "Straightjacket," "Blues In Her Eyes," "Old School," and "Bonneville Shuffle."



Join together
For the purpose
Of accomplishing


Kleenex Girl Wonder - Vana Mundi (Independently released vinyl LP, Rock/pop)
Kleenex Girl Wonder is one of the best underground pop/rock bands in the United States today. Although the band plays a brand of music that seems strangely familiar, the songs don't really recall any other specific bands or artists. We love bandleader Graham Smith's quote about this one. He states, "As far as meaning is will have to rely on your own intuition and interpretation. It's all there for you to soak up. I promise." There's certainly plenty to soak up on this beautifully packaged vinyl LP. Ten intelligent tracks that follow their own unique path, seemingly with no regard for following current trends or trying to please anyone in particular. Smith has carved out his own unique niche in the world of music simply by doing things his own way rather than follow in the footsteps of others. And in today's complex and ultra-cluttered world of way-too-much music and way-too-many clone artists...that's really saying something. Vana Mundi is right up there with the very best albums from Kleenex Girl Wonder. Actually and in all honesty, they're all great (and highly recommended). These songs have that strange unexplainable quality that makes you want to hear them over and over again. Traditional rock instruments are utilized, but the way the songs are presented is undeniably unique, unusual, and inspired. As has been the case with previous releases from this band, we are totally blown away. Wonderfully inspired cuts include "Practical Effects," "Tratteggio" (our favorite), "The Mesomorph," "Ask Mountain," and "Picture the Kid." Highly recommended. TOP PICK.

Leland and the Silver Wells - Leland and the Silver Wells (CD, Rubia, Pop)
Totally cool and dreamy free-flowing modern pop with subtle threads of progressive rock sewn into the fabric. We particularly love the fact that these tracks are intended to be listened to as a whole. In stark contrast to a world in which most people only want to hear/stream/download a single track by an artist, Leland Ettinger purposely chose to record nine tracks that fit together to form a cohesive album. A few years back Ettinger released a couple of well released albums under the name Leland (Forever, The Golden West). After a lengthy break from recording she's back...and this time around we're betting she'll have even greater success than before. This self-titled album should please fans of dream pop, classic pop, and progressive rock. There are so many great things about these tracks. The lyrics are exceptional, as are the arrangements. And Ettinger's got a voice that really draws you in with her exceptional melodies. There's so much more depth here than what is normally offered from your average artist in 2018. And although the overall sound is strangely familiar, we can't come up with any specific reference points. Ettinger is a unique artist with a unique perspective. If you're like us and enjoy the idea of getting to know another individual through their music, this album will likely strike real chords in your consciousness. Wonderfully resilient cuts include "We Dissolve," "Lost My Way," "Carry Me Home," and "Play It As It Lays." Highly recommended. Top pick.

The Lemon Clocks - Songs From Another Time (Import CD, Rock Indiana, Pop)
Of all the side projects that Jeremy Morris is involved in, The Lemon Clocks is our favorite. The band is the trio comprised of Morris, Stefan Johannson, and Todd Borsch. Together, the three write and record heavenly pop music threaded with hints of 1960s psychedelia. The great news is that Songs From Another Time is yet another striking addition to the band's catalog. Released on the Rock Indiana label, this album should please just about anyone who loves melodic classic pop and/or British invasion stuff. There's a lot to take in here as the band offers nineteen new songs chock full of groovy rhythms, killer guitars, and top notch vocals. Our favorite tracks include "Look Out," "Out of the Grave," "Dana the Forklift Driver Girl," "Just a Song," "When You Close Your Eyes," and "Together"...but in all honesty each and every track on this disc is a keeper. Gotta love the simple and direct artwork as well. The cover features a lemon/lime that has been neatly cut in half and was then color treated to match the overall vibe. Jeremy, Stefan, and Todd once again hit the target dead center with this release. Another Time is smart, resilient, and ultimately very very infectious. Love it. Recommended. Top pick.

The Lords of the New Church - The Lords of the New Church: Special Edition (Double CD, Blixasounds, Rock/pop)
Double disc reissue of the debut album from The Lords of the New Church. Because The Dead Boys seemed very much like the American version of The Damned, it kinda made sense that lead vocalist Stiv Bators would eventually hook up with Brian James (founding member and chief songwriter in the original lineup of The Damned). When this album was released in 1982 it failed to achieve the kind of success both artists had with their former bands. But as years have passed, it has gained in momentum and stature and now many regard it as one of the highlights of the early 1980s. The first CD includes all ten tracks from the original album plus three tracks previously available as vinyl singles. The second CD features thirteen tracks recorded live in 1982 at My Father's Place in Long Island, New York (plus a reading of the Allen Toussant classic "Fortune Teller"). As if all the bonus music tracks weren't reason enough to pick up this release, it also includes a cool booklet full of photographs and new liner notes by music journalist Craig Rosen (who interviewed the band in 1983). Mr. Bators unfortunately died way back in 1990. But if he were alive today, he'd be mighty pleased with this one. Cool rockin' cuts include "New Church," "Eat Your Heart Out," "Open Your Eyes," "Girls Girls Girls," and "Portobello."

Love Ghost - Lobotomy (Independently released CD, Progressive rock)
Sounding something like Nirvana threaded with tons of progressive/heavy metal, the folks in Altadena, California's Love Ghost are quickly making inroads in the world of music. Lobotomy is one hell of an interesting and fun spin. This thirteen track album packs a mighty punch. But even though the music is loud and intense, the main emphasis is on songs, lyrics, and melodies. The band is comprised of Finnegan Bell (guitar, lead vocals), Mya Greene (viola), Ryan Stevens (bass, backing vocals), and Samson Young (drums). This group is an excellent example of just how far do-it-yourself projects have come in the twenty-first century. Gone are the days when bands and artists waited around for some record company to help them achieve their dreams. These four musicians have taken their career into their own hands, effectively creating and managing things themselves. Housed in a cool triple fold digipak sleeve (complete with lyrics), Lobotomy is already finding an enthusiastic and supportive audience. In addition to releasing the album themselves, the band has also released their own DVD-R featuring six videos from the album. Everything about this band would already be intriguing and mind-expanding...but when you consider how young the band members are (two are still in high school) somehow all seems even more impressive. Cool complex cuts include "Girl Pusher," "Parasitical Identity," "This is the Truth," and "In My Head Again." Cool tunes recorded and produced with exacting precision. Intelligent, hard rockin' stuff delivered with intense style.

Luna Honey - Peace Will Grind You Down (CD, Blight, Progressive/experimental)
Unorthodox and unusual. The first thing that caught our attention here was the album title. What an excellent choice of words that will immediately confuse or alienate people. We love it. The second thing we noticed were the influences. Most folks aren't compared with unusual bands and artists like The Birthday Party, Nico, and The Swans (?!). We love 'em all, of course...and we're also intrigued by the cool spooky tracks on Peace Will Grind You Down. Luna Honey is the duo of Maura Pond and Levi Flack. Produced by Benjamin Schurr (of the band Br'er), these tracks will appeal to that small yet enlightened segment of the listening population wanting something more than mindless dribble. Hard to compare this music to other artists because Pond and Flack seem to be creating music driven by their own unique joint consciousness. One thing is certain, this album is not for everyone. If you're wanting something familiar and catchy that doesn't require much thought, this may be more than you want to handle. These tracks combine unusual sounds with bizarre lyrics and peculiar vocals. The overall tone is dark, as these two artists delve into their deepest mental states. In addition to producing, Schurr also plays guitar and synthesizers on these tracks and baritone saxophone is provided courtesy of Madeline Billhimer. Stark, dark, peculiar, and sometimes distant...Peace Will Grind You Down is a pure exercise in credible artistic expression. Perplexing cuts include "Honey," "Line of Sight," and "Relinquish."

Mad Monk Squad - Better Way To Go (Independently released CD, Pop)
Brand new classic pop that you've never heard before. If you like smooth catchy credible guitar-driven pop, you're gonna dig the sound of the tracks on Better Way To Go. The album features thirteen songs that sound incredibly familiar and yet they're brand new original compositions. Mad Monk Squad is the duo of John DiMattei (songwriter, vocalist, founder, multi-instrumentalist) and Dave Mallen (lead guitar, backing vocals, bass, keyboards, drums, percussion). These songs have that certain something that makes it almost impossible to resist playing them over and over again. So many underground musicians make music that is either extremely strange or, at times, unlistenable. This music has a great deal of commercial appeal and yet it bears almost no resemblance to the dreck that most American listen to. We can hear traces of a whole host of other artists here including (but not limited to) The Records, The Shoes, Fountains of Wayne, early Rick Springfield, and more. Recorded at Dave Mallen's Innovation Station studio in Annandale, Virginia, this album has just the right amount of polish without ever sounding overproduced. All of these tracks are great, but our initial favorites include "Dorianne," "Riding the A," "Better Way To Go," and "You Will Love Again."

The March Divide - Anticipation Pops (CD, Slow Start, Pop)
Yet another album from The March Divide featuring cool, smart, credible pop. Jared Putnam's the main man in this band, and he never lets his listeners down. This talented fellow's music just keeps getting better. Anticipation Pops is one solid spin. The album features ten smart guitar-driven pop tracks with a heavy emphasis on vocal melodies and lyrics. Over time, most artists tend to begin overproducing their music which in many ways detracts from their original sound. Putnam avoids this trap, opting instead to present his songs using only the basics. The stripped down approach works when there's substance present. And you'll hear plenty of substance here. The chord progressions are interesting and unpredictable. The arrangements for each track are precise and exacting. And once again the vocals are just perfect. Pops is yet another exceedingly entertaining spin. Cool reflective cuts include "I Don't Care," "Spinning," "The One On," and "Lucky." Top pick.

Merel & Tony - Merel & Tony (Independently released CD EP, Pop)
We rarely review EPs and only when it's something that really stands out. This is one of those cases. We're always on a continual search for sincerity and originality in the world of music. With the Houston, Texas-based duo Merel & get both. We've never ever heard music from Texas that sounds like this. Could be because these two folks divide their time, living in both Houston, Texas and Rome, Italy. We love the name of the duo's backing band The Woe Woe Woes. Though this is probably best described as pop music, it bears almost no resemblance to twenty-first century commercial pop. Merel & Tony seem to be creating music out of pure artistic desire. The songs are melodic and inviting, but they're also strangely compelling and different. The arrangements are striking and unique, as are the vocals. After hearing these tracks, we weren't too surprised to read that these folks were recently commissioned to compose a musical for a local theater company. Five cool tracks here. Our favorites include "Purgatorio," The Shame," and "The Future is Ending." Far more creative (and interesting) than the average artist or band in 2018.

Mr. Robot - Original Television Series Soundtrack, Volume 4: Music by Mac Quayle (CD, Lakeshore, Soundtrack)
Prior to receiving/spinning this album, we were already huge fans of the previous Mr. Robot soundtracks. Mac Quayle's name will forever be embedded in peoples' combined consciousness now, as his music has affected so many music and television fans around the globe. In addition to creating the music for Mr. Robot, Quayle has also composed and recorded stuff for the shows Feud: Bette and Joan and Scream Queens. But back to the matter at hand. Volume 4 of this series features more of what Mac's fans have come to expect from him. These tracks effectively combine elements from early electronic pioneers from the 1970s with modern day state-of-the-art recording techniques and sounds. This is the strangest yet of the series. These nineteen compositions often teeter into purely experimental territory, where sounds and moods are far more important than commonplace variables like melodies and song structures. What is perhaps most striking about this music is how sparse it is overall. Instead of arranging and layering his compositions to death, Quayle opts to leave plenty of wide open space in these tracks which gives them an even more eerie and surreal feel. We've learned to appreciate restraint in the world of music because it seems to be one of the rarest traits out there. Mac Quayle has once again hit the nail squarely on the head. Cerebral, spacey, peculiar, and bizarre...this one's right up there with the very best soundtracks released this year. Killer cuts include "h4ndshade.opus," "hIdden-prOcess.dvf," "ph4se.vox," and "takeb4ckcontrol.act." The louder you turn this one up...the more likely you are to be transported. Highly recommended. TOP PICK.

Mike Nicolai - A Line Cook's Guide to New Satanic Empires (Vinyl LP, Rock Tumbler, Pop/rock)
Another exceptionally rewarding release from Mike Nicolai. This guy's music just keeps getting better and better. On this album his craft has come clearly into sharp focus. The curiously-titled A Line Cook's Guide to New Satanic Empires is chock full of exceptionally well-crafted intelligent pop. Mike's songs remind us of a whole host of other artists we love, but particular ones that come to mind while spinning this album include The Young Fresh Fellows, The Kinks, and Anton Barbeau. But while the possible influences and references are many, you can always be certain first and foremost that these tracks ultimately sound just like...Mike Nicolai. We're always suckers for great melodies, and Empires is loaded with 'em. Crafted using only the basics, these tracks focus mainly on lyrics and vocal melodies. These songs are so much smarter than what most folks are accustomed to hearing in 2018. Because every single track is exceptional, it's hard to pick favorites...but here goes. Initial favorites include "New Blood," "Proof," "Kicking On Stones," "Trying To Get It Right," and "Loaded Up." The cover of this vinyl LP features a cool painting entitled The Devil Getting Dressed for Work by Steve Griffin. We've been impressed with Mike's music in the past, but this one really knocks our socks off. If you love the previously mentioned artists...or if you just dig totally cool classic're almost certain to fall in love with this album. We'll be playing this one into the ground. Highly recommended. TOP PICK.

Nobody's Girl - Waterline (CD EP, Lucky Hound Music, Pop)
Commercial music has a truly bad reputation in the twenty-first century. Sad but true, when an artist is popular it almost always means...they suck. Fortunately there are exceptions to the rule. The three ladies in Nobody's Girl are helping turn that situation around...releasing music that is credible and also has the potential for widespread commercial success. This Austin, Texas-based trio is comprised of Bettysoo, Rebecca Loebe, and Grace Pettis...and their music is going to be immediately embraced by a wide cross section of music listeners. All three play guitar. In the studio, the trio is supported by backing musicians David Grissom (acoustic and electric guitars), Glenn Fukunaga (bass), J.J. Johnson (drums), Ramos (keyboards), and Ricky Ray Jackson (pedal steel). The Waterline EP presents seven smooth melodic tracks that are pure feelgood experiences. Listeners are bound to go ape over cool catchy tracks like "What'll I Do," "Waterline," "Riding Out the Storm," and "Call Me." There's no telling how far these ladies can go with their music. The sky's the limit.

The Quick - Mondo Deco: Expanded Edition (CD, Mercury / Real Gone Music, Pop/rock)
When we first became aware of Ron Mael and Russell Mael and the band Sparks we were immediately hypnotized by everything they recorded. And so were others, including other musicians. It wasn't long before two copycat bands appeared on the horizon. In Great Britain it was the original band called Jet and here in the United States we had The Quick. Even though both bands were blatantly copying the Maels' sound, we couldn't help but like what we heard. Sparks were the kings of the sound they created, of course...but these other two bands did a damn good job of creating their own similar sound. Over time, the original vinyl of The Quick's Mondo Deco album became increasingly hard to find. But thanks to the internet, over time the band's music continued generating more and more attention. Some of the band's demos made their way into the CD market, but a reissue of Mondo Deco just never surfaced...until now. At long last the original album is once again available, remastered from the original master tapes, and also featuring ten demonstration recordings, plus an outtake ("Anybody"). The band was comprised of Steven Hefster (guitar), Ian Ainsworth (bass), Danny Benair (drums), Billy Bizeau (keyboards and vocals), and Danny Wilde (vocals). These tracks have held up surprisingly well over time, and there's bound to be a whole new crowd of folks interested in hearing this music. The lyric/info booklet features a wealth of information and photos that offer some incredible insight into the band and their recordings. The Quick's version of The Beatles' "It Won't Be Long" is arguably better than the original. Other immediately catchy tracks include "No No Girl," "Hillary," and "My Purgatory Years." Hard to say which are better...the demonstration recordings or the final studio tracks (?). We're into both. It's incredibly great that these tracks have finally been made available on CD. They've never sounded better. This is a band whose time has finally come. Do yourself a favor and check out this cool obscure pop band...and get hold of this disc before it goes out of print...again (!). Recommended for Sparks well as just about anyone who loves cool and catchy power pop. Top pick.

Allen Ravenstine - Waiting For the Bomb (CD, ReR Megacorp, Progressive)
This one's difficult to categorize or describe. Treading somewhere in the territory where classical meets jazz meets pop meets experimental, we're going to go the safe route and put this one in the progressive category. Although you might not know him by name, Allen Ravenstine has been an influential and admired musician in underground circles for years. The easiest reference point here would be to mention that he was a founding member of the band Pere Ubu. But in actuality he's done so much more than that. Interestingly, in the early 1990s Ravenstine quit working as a professional musician and became a commercial airline pilot (which he still is today). But in 2014 he decided to start making music again which led to the 2017 release of his album The Pharaoh's Bee. One of the reasons most folks won't recognize Allen's name is because he has always been working in the undercurrents in the world of music. Rather than make music for money, he chose the more artistic route of creating music that was credible and unique. He has once again succeeded with the release of this, his latest album. Waiting For the Bomb is a curious spin in which Ravenstine comes up with all kinds of strangely rewarding compositions. Combining normal instruments with electronics, he creates a world that at times sounds somewhat familiar...and at other times does not. The key word here is creativity. This lengthy album (close to sixty-seven minutes) explores all sorts of musical terrain. The only real constant here is quality. The initial recording was done at Allen's apartment in New York City. Afterward, additional tracks were added in a traditional studio. Lots of cool credible cuts including "Sentimental Duet," "Save Our Ship," "Spirits," and "Short Wave." Intriguing and ultimately very different.

Craig Safan - Sirens: Music Inspired by Homer's Odyssey (CD, Varese Sarabande, Progressive)
Best known for his work in the world of music for motion pictures, Craig Safan takes a different turn in the road this time. Our guess is that this album was a pure labor of love, as Safan turns his attention to creating music that was inspired by Homer's The Odyssey. Safan has released a mind-boggling array of albums over the years (click on his web site link above to see the lengthy discography). On a recent trip to Sicily and the Aeolian Islands, Craig recorded various live sounds that he then incorporated into these tracks. A great deal of time, attention, and concentration went into these recordings. Standard instruments merge with state-of-the-art technology to create a musical world that is absorbing and timeless. Craig himself plays keyboards and is aided by the expertise of other talented artists: Sara Andon, Caroline Campbell, V.F.S., Aija Mattson, and Linda Safan. These intricate recordings will appeal to soundtrack fans, classical music fans, and even progressive rock fans. The beautifully executed tracks will make you feel as if you are traveling on a journey to places you've never been before. This remarkably soothing experience features thirteen cool compositions including "Circe's Island," "Ithaka: Visions of Home," "I Have Heard the Mermaids Singing," and "Icarus (To J.H.)."



Slaw is the


The Slocan Ramblers - Queen City Jubilee (Independently released CD, Bluegrass/roots/pop)
We like roots music when it sounds authentic and real. And we're here to tell you folks that the guys in The Slocan Ramblers are the real deal. With so much twenty-first century interest in roots, Americana, and bluegrass music, many bands and artists have slicked and prettied up their sound in order to attract more listeners. They may make more money and garner more attention by doing this, but their watered down sounds tend to lack authenticity. Queen City Jubilee is, in a word...inspired. These guys apparently make music out of pure passion and inspiration. You can hear it in their music as their genuine spirit bleeds through each and every track. The band is comprised of Frank Evans, Adrian Gross, Alastair Whitehead, and Daryl Poulsen. These guys can sing and play like nobody's business. Jubilee contains a mix of traditional tunes and originals. Named after what was once a nickname for Toronto, this album is bound to end up on many best of 2018 lists in the world of bluegrass. The band presents fourteen well-crafted cuts including "Mississippi Heavy Water Blues," "Hill to Climb," "New Morning," "Makin' Home," and "Riley the Furniture Man."

The Special Pillow - Sleeping Weird (CD-R, Zofko, Pop)
The Special Pillow is the current project driven by the songwriting skills of Dan Cuddy who was previously in the critically-acclaimed band Hypnolovewheel. This Hoboken, New Jersey-based band has been in existence for about twenty years. Sleeping Weird is chock full of highly melodic guitar-driven pop/rock tracks, some of which bear subtle similarities to some of Scott McCaughey's early material. In addition to Cuddy, the band is comprised of Katie Gentile (violin, viola, vocals), Peter Stuart (guitar, vocals), and Eric Marc Cohen (drums, percussion, vocals). Also lending musical support are Ariella Stok, Steven Levi, and Mitch Rackin. While spinning this for the first time, the word that kept popping up in our heads was...unpretentious. This album does not have that annoying sound of twenty-first century perfection. Cuddy and his associates chose to record their material in such a way that it sounds like real people playing real music. And that's just one of many points that makes Sleeping Weird such a pleasing spin. Dan still has that magical songwriting sense that attracted so many folks to Hypnolovewheel, so we're hoping that over time this band will experience even more success and notoriety. Eleven cool tracks, and they all have something substantial to offer. Our initial favorites include "Gilded Shrug," "A Billion Years Ago," "Thought Bubble," and "Paleolithic Axe." Totally groovy stuff with just the right sound.

JP Soars - Southbound I-95 (CD, Soars High Productions, Rock/blues/pop)
Totally cool bluesy rock with a nice loose overall sound and feel. Originally from California and Arkansas, JP Soars has lived in South Florida since 1985. He was the first place winner of the International Blues Challenge and the Albert King award, and was also nominated for the BMA Contemporary Male Blues Artist 2012. Spin Southbound I-95 once or twice and you'll immediately see why. These fifteen tracks feature some truly inspired guitar playing and appropriately raspy vocals that provide the perfect focal point. Rather than having one specific band back him up, Soars invited a whole slew of other friends/artists to lend their talents. These tracks feature no less than seventeen other musicians offering their support. JP has varied taste in music, and you can hear this in his music. His list of influences includes West Montgomery, Django Reinhardt, T-Bone Walker, Pete Fountain, Louis Armstrong, Guitar Slim, Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf, Willie Nelson, George Jones, Tito Puente, Black Sabbath, Van Halen, and Metallica (yow!). Some folks just play music while other folks...really feel the music they play. JP Soars most definitely fits into the latter category. Our favorite rockin' cuts include "Ain't No Dania Beach," "Southbound I-95," "Satisfy My Soul," "Dog Catcher," and "Go With the Flow." Highly recommended for blues and roots rock fans.

Thomas Stajcer - Will I Learn to Love Again? (CD, Music Nova Scotia, Pop/country)
We would never in a million years have guessed that this fellow resides in Canada. Playing classic country/pop like so many top notch artists from the past, Thomas Stajcer has already cemented his place in the world of music. Will I Learn to Love Again? is his debut release...and it's a keeper. The album title will remind many of the ups and downs that are a part of all relationships. It's also an indication of the honest and personal lyrics found on this album. Recorded live at Joel Plaskett's studio in Canada (we highly recommend anything/everything this guy has recorded), these tracks have the cool spontaneous sound and feel of a real band playing real music. Stajcer's voice is the best. This guy has a cool deep voice that should please just about anyone who ever loved Waylon Jennings and/or Sturgill Simpson. Few artists come up with something this credible and entertaining on their debut. You can bet your booties that you'll be seeing and hearing a lot more from Thomas in the years to come. This short album clocks in at just over half an hour. But in that amount of time, Stajcer proves that he is a real force to be reckoned with. Cool compositions include "Love Me Now (or Never Again)," "In the Long Run," "Any Old Road," and "How Long Could I Wait?"

Stone the Crows & Maggie Bell - Best of (Double CD, Angel Air, Rock/soul/pop)
Hefty double disc comprehensive best of collection featuring the unforgettable talents of Maggie Bell. This set focuses not only on Bell's solo albums, but also on the band Stone the Crows. With all the attention slathered on Janis Joplin over the years (not ragging Joplin at all, he love 'er) seems as if the time is right for worldwide renewed interest in Maggie's music. Considering the fact that she is often referred to as the British Janis Joplin, twenty-first century listeners would/will be highly rewarded by Bell's music. The first CD compiles tracks from the four Stone the Crows albums. These tracks combine rock with a heavy dose of blues and capture Maggie at her roughest and best. Like Big Brother and the Holding Company, the guys in Stone the Crows were super tight on their instruments. That, combined with a helluva vocalist, added up to a formidable wall of sound that really affected listeners. The second disc mainly features tracks from Bell's two solo albums that were released in the mid-1970s. Twenty cool tracks that will thrill and delight just about anyone who loves classic rock, blues, and pop. Kickass cuts include "Good Time Girl," "Blind Man," "Cado Queen," and "It's Been So Long."

Superbean - Shit Show (CD, Vaguely Profound Recordings, Rock/pop)
Whew...this one's a real knockout. Shit Show is the second full-length release from the Los Angeles, California-based band Superbean...and it's a direct HIT. Unlike so many modern bands and artists who play it safe, safe, safe...these guys aren't afraid to play way too loud and raise hell. Folks who love the hard and abrasive sound of bands from the 1970s and 1990s (two of the hardest rockin' decades in music)...will absolutely love the fact that these three men play with such wild abandon. They're not afraid to offend folks and they're definitely not trying to please the politically correct elite crowd who seem to be trying to tell musical artists what is and what is not acceptable in 2018. But don't let the attitude and volume scare you away from this one because...the band is mainly and ultimately just a great big ol' ball of fun. The trio is comprised of Steve Moramarco on guitar and vocals, Freddie Oliva on bass and vocals, and Rick Woodard on drums. As if the songs weren't reason enough to check this one out, we should also mention that this limited edition album is pressed on way cool blood red vinyl. This is escapist rock in which the main idea is to turn it up really loud and get lost in the music. We love the crazy vibes these guys put out. Totally rockin' tracks include "Marisol," "F*ck Youth," "Been There," "Shit Show," "Pack Up Your Stuff," and "Radish Rose." Recommended. Top pick.

We Are Muffy - The Charcoal Pool (CD, Tapete, Pop)
When we first started listening to this album we were immediately impressed with the overall sound and vibe. Upon reading the press release, we were even more impressed to find that the band's influences include the Incredible String Band, Tyrannosaurus Rex (!), Sam Cooke, Max Romeo, and Shirley & Dolly Collins. Of course our first impression was also coached forward when we noticed the album was released on the always entertaining Tapete label (almost everything on Tapete is totally exceptional). The Charcoal Pool has all the elements we look for in great underground pop melodies, simple arrangements, excellent vocal melodies, and top notch vocals. We Are Muffy is the duo of Nick Duffy and Angeline Morrison. Duffy was previously in the bands The Lilac Time (a babysue favorite) and Bait, while Morrison was in The Mighty Sceptres and The Ambassadors of Sorrow (another babysue favorite). Pool features thirteen exceedingly cool tracks with cool flowing melodies and top notch vocals. At a point in time when most musicians overproduce everything, Nick and Angeline's sparse and direct sound is like a refreshing blast of cold water. Recorded in Nick's garage, these songs are inspired and ultimately very inspiring. Intelligent cuts include "Civil Service," "Precious Things," "Frosted Candy," "Unsuitable Footwear," "Strange Admixture," and "The Lost Carpenter." We love everything about this album. Duffy and Morrison have created songs with true staying power. Highly recommended. TOP PICK.

Tony Joe White - Bad Mouthin' (CD, Yep Roc, Blues)
Legendary singer/songwriter Tony Joe White presents...a brand new album of blues music in 2018. Very much unlike the majority of twenty-first century blues albums, Bad Mouthin' presents minimalistic stripped down blues played the way folks used to play years and years ago. To get the right feel and sound, White moved his instruments and recording gear into his barn...where two horse stalls became the recording studio. These tracks recall other classic blues artists like John Lee Hooker. You can tell by the sound of these tracks that Tony isn't trying to please or impress anyone these days. These are songs that came straight from his soul. Over the years, this man has had his songs covered by an amazing array of artists including Elvis Presley, Brook Benton, Dusty Springfield, Eric Clapton, Tina Turner, Willie Nelson, Kenny Chesney, Robert Cray, and more. Bad Mouthin' features seven cover tunes and five originals, two of which are the very first songs he wrote years ago. At a point in time when so many rely on technology and gimmicks to make music, this album immediately stands out. In discussing his music, White says "If there's anything like a line connecting everything that I've done I would say it's realness." If that doesn't sum things up succinctly, we don't know what does. Cool heartfelt tracks include "Bad Mouthin'," "Cool Town Woman," "Sundown Blues," and "Stockholm Blues."



Get upset


Young Gun Silver Fox - AM Waves (CD, Fatbeats / Candelion, Pop)
If you loved Todd Rundgren's early albums which featured pure pop laced with Philadelphia soul (that includes us), you're going to totally dig the sound of Young Gun Silver Fox. These guys have come up with a sound that is bound to be a big hit among fans of classic soul pop. The appropriately-titled AM Waves features instantly familiar and cool tracks that could easily have been huge hits in the 1960s and 1970s. But make no mistake, these are brand new recordings with a current overall sound and vibe. And even though there are definite retrospective vibes happening, this music is undeniably current and relevant. The band is the duo of Andy Platts (Young Gun) and Shawn Lee (Silver Fox)...two fellows who have an uncanny knack for writing smooth hummable commercial soul/pop. While spinning these tracks, we couldn't help but be reminded of the wonderfully entertaining twin pop duo the Alessi Brothers (isn't it about time for a comprehensive box set of these guys' music?). The multi-layered vocals and soulful beats on AM Waves are remarkably similar in many ways. Platts and Lee really hit the target dead center with this, their second full-length release. This one's bound to be embraced by pop fans the world over. Cool reflective cuts include "Midnight in Richmond," "Take It or Leave It," "Caroline," and "Lolita."

Yuka & Chronoship - Ship (CD, Cherry Red, Progressive rock)
Complex progressive rock with a difference. Yuka & Chronoship was formed in 2009 and is comprised of Yuka Funakoshi, Takashi Miyazawa, Shun Taguchi, and Ikko Tanaka. The band's last album (The 3rd Planetary Chronicles) received very positive responses from all around the world. Now comes the follow up. Ship is a cool modern slice of progressive rock music played with meticulous attention to detail. Listeners may be reminded of classic progressive rock bands from the past, but the overall sound and feel of these tracks is decidedly twenty-first century. If the vocals on the first track ("Tears of the Figurehead") sound familiar, it's because the song features the talents of guest vocalist Sonja Kristina (of Curved Air fame). The first seven songs on Ship form a suite that is based on the Greek mythology Argo. Rounding out the album are four additional standalone tracks. One of the things we liked most about progressive rock bands from the 1970s was the fact that many of their albums would take you on an extended journey in which you could get lost in the magnitude of it all. Ship may very well give you the same overall feeling. The compositions give us the feeling that we are watching things move in the sky. These expertly crafted cuts were recorded with a great deal of time and care, and the inspiration is obvious. "The ARGO Suite" is breathtaking in and of itself. Add the additional four tracks...and you have an album that is breathtaking and mind-boggling in so many ways. Highly recommended for fans of progressive rock.

Additional Items Received:

Academics for Pure Boredom - Slurps
Ryan Adams - Heartbreaker (deluxe edition)
Ryan Adams - Dustjacket (relaxed edition)
Additional Items Composed - Reversal of radishes
Additional Items Reversed - Back to the additional items
Adele - My frisky rat puppy done ate my head off
Alice Copper - Lob it to Seth
Allman Brothers - Crackdown concert 1986
Shirlette Ammons - Language barrier
Am Not - Am too
Anohni - Hopelessness
Anthrax - For all kings
Antlers for Booboo - Oh no not that tired old runt again
Ape - Don't say no words
Apples Got Smushy - Train smush
Application For Crap - Please submit crap
Athens Is Not A City - Trauma for the bush animals
August Wish - Traps for punted
Augusta Is Not A City - Wilma for the plush panels

Bad Bump - Banana tread
Badfigure - Crooked down
Bambi Dambi - Lambi
Ballerina Pumps - Blackass
Barge - Limpy
Beadulls - Desmocker
Beatles - Medium
Beatles - Medium rare
Beatles - Rare
Beatles - Not as rare
Beatles - Stuff that was never recorded
Beatles - Stuff that we wish had never been recorded
Bee Numb - Numb bee
Beyonce - Sorry
Beyonce - I can dance even if I can't do anything else very well
Beyonce - If all you want is an ugly body and face, I've got both
Beyonce - Don't you get tired of hearing my stupid name all the time
Beyonce - I'm really a boring old hag who looks terrible without thick layers of make-up
Beyonce - If I can dance good who cares what I can't do
Beyond the Beyonder - Blander and blander
Bjork - Vulnicura live
Black Tabitha - Pastor of senility
Blankets for Blankets - Laps
Blender in a Blinder - Fizzle
Bobo's Pretty Duster - Lamp off, lamp on
Davie Bowie - All the dumb dudes
Breezer the Flew - Like dazzlers in fume
Bumps Fifty - West
Jenna Bush - Why does my face resemble the rectum of a pig?
Jenna Bush - Trying way too hard to be clever and cute, but I will always be unbearably annoying
Butler Pudding - Lippity gris gris
Buzz's Lamp Cord - Tawny frink

Car Mump - Dazed and refused
Casket of Corformity - Laser dog
Cast of Cast - Lastly
Cat Grave - Mickey's laboratory
Cesula - Maid in martians
Chance The Rapper - Coloring book
Chicago - Love songs
Chump - Malaria
Chunks of Paisley Pumps - Lordy the snore is a plaza burn
Eric Clapton - I still do
Phil Collins - No jacket required
Sean Combs - How come I never get reviewed in babysue?
Sean Combs - You don't like me just because I'm arrogant and obnoxious, I get it
Sean Combs - Hey, I make a lot of money you underground jerks
Sean Combs - I'm rich, rich, RICH...ain't that what it's all about?
Sean Combs - Lookin' ugly every day o' my life
Come To Lulu's Nurse - Romp and the bumpy tum tum
Confederate Railroad - Happy to be alive
Conscious Or Not - Grumpy lazy
Crap You Like - Tape measure
Crosby, Stills & Nash - Survival Sunday
Crunchy Links - Switches and prawns
Miley Cyrus - How come I never get mentioned in babysue?
Miley Cyrus - I guess it's because nothing I do has any substance
Miley Cyrus - I like lots of attention
Miley Cyrus - I wish I wasn't dull and boring
Miley Cyrus - I am so ugly and stupid
Miley Cyrus - Anything for attention
Czerchnkii - Dim

Dadfinger - Where's dad's finger when you need it?
Dae Dae - Mae Mae
Daisy Days - Freezing
Damn People - Damn People
Damn Tumblers - Damn Tumblers
Damn Warp - Damn Warp
Damn Zoo - Damn Zoo
Deftones - Gore
Devonte - Feed me
Devonte - Find me
Diets Are For Dimwits - Lassie's lost pudding cup
Dimmer than Dim - Inputs
Dion - New York is my home
Dirty Pennies - Flocks and pimps
Doves That Die Today - Lassie
Drippy Dennis - Directional
Dry Potato - Sync
Ducks for Ducks - Nine hundred ponies
Dumb Sounds - Like Nanny and the poodle

Each and Each - Teach
Eachy - Preachy
Eat The Bounty Feathers - Naptime
Ectonerf - Bah baddah bah
Elephant Muff - Beneath the blurry knob
Elves and Bumpy Thumpers - Original motion picture soundtrack
Emergency Flakes - Phasers
Empty - Flow
Empty Flower - 1 2 3 4
Enough for Five Thousand - One bottle
Enter the Entrance With Lockets - Glasses on the puddle
Eventually We'll All Die With Nothing - Pom poms
Everyone But - But Everyone
Ewe - Ranch funk
EZ - Not so

FA - La la
Famous Famous - Converter
Far Out Far In - Farin
Faxes Forever - Limp little pixies
Ferz - Lizzy
Fifty Million - Zero lads
Finks Forever - Live at the dead
Five Times Fifty-Five - Live
Four Times Four Is Four - Five times
Foxes - All I need
Fume - Lumps
Funky Laminate - Parking
Fur For Francis - Pouches

Gang of Flower - Untertainment
Gas Pumps - Last primper
Gauge Rage - Now cow
Germany's Burp - Lamp drill
Get Your Begging Done - Tower bitch
Vince Gill - Down to my last bad habit
Goddamn Children - Goddamn us all to hell
Goo Goo Dolls - Boxes
Graham Slackers - Naturally grabby
Ariana Grande - Into you
Grandmothers and Grandfathers - Nothing else to live for except the goddamn grandchildren
Grass Patches - Dolby
Josh Groban - Stages live
David Guetta - This one's for you
Guns N Roses - Acoustic session: Radio broadcast 1987

Hamster on a Bun - Heartache on a bun
Hamster on a Lettuce Leaf - Try to find something to stuff in your cheeks
Jennifer and Sarah Hart - Where did our love go
Jennifer and Sarah Hart - We loved Jesus very much
Jennifer and Sarah Hart - Happy together
Hay - Hay
Hazle - Measurements
Hell for Humans - Happiness is a dumb puppy
Help Me Help Me - Liver
Help the Hopeless - Bloody hearts get you nowhere
Hissy - Laserbon
Hitt - Dawn for the loud birds
Hizzers - Stuck
Ian Hunted - Punts and nuttters
Husperate - ADN
Hut for Henry - Universe of sandy
Huzzle - Earlier albums

Ian - Jackknife
Icky - Picky, picky, picky
If It Dies Don't Touch It - I offered more than they wanted and they took it
If You Knew Nothing You Would Be Nothing - Drips
Inky Doll - Dampness and dryness
In The End The Beginning - Ridgefield
It Stays Warm - Square butter
IX Lamb Sweater - To each his each
IZZ - Each his to his

Alan Jackson - Now that I'm a girl
Alan Jackson - Now that I done gone angry
Alan Jackson - My drone
Michael Jackson - Off the wall
Michael Jackson - Towers of nothing
Michael Jackson - Nosey dopes
Jerry's Apple - Towers
Jerry's Crud - Narry a buster
Jersey is Swervy - Translustre
Jethro Toil - Sick as a tick
Jethro Wump - Aquatong
Jethro Zoo - Minstrel in the snake exhibit
Elton John - Wonderful crazy night
Elton John - Where did my voice go?
Jones Is A Donkey - Drammamine
Jones Is An Elephant - Mine ain't mine
Judas Priest - Battle cry
Junk Is Just Junk - Lady trunk

Kaas - Lacey
Kalesh - Kaos
Kandy and the Ks - Lassie's drool
Kows - Land of the Kows
Kraftlunch - Radio lunch
Kraftdinner - Electric dinner
Kraftsnack - Trans euro snack
Krap - Krap
Krazy Cow - Lots of tips
Krunchy Krunch - Captain's caps and tons
Kudzu's Lamp - Drastic
Kunks - The Late Glossy Kunks Album

Lab Crutch - Tramps that David hates
Ladies For Pretzels - Louder than the other thing that we had discussed earlier
Lady Gaga - How come I never get mentioned in babysue?
Lady Gaga - If I look really strange, nothing else matters
Lady Gaga - Anything for fame
Lady Gaga - Anything for money
Lamb Peppers - Smuppy
Lamps for the Homeless - These goddamn things don't work
Cindi Lauper - Grandmothers with bad hair colors
Laxative Preamble - Naps and snappers
Let There Be Let - Now there be meow
Lisa Said - First time, long time
Lists - Stop the Lists
Loretta Lynn - Sings her favorite Nine Inch Nails songs
Loud and Loud - Dull and dull
Lumineers - Cleopatra
Lumps - Lousy mouses
Lung Disease - Trowel

Manners and Nanners - Tablets for pokey
Trayvon Martin - Skittuzz fo evuhbuddeh
Trayvon Martin - Juss a boy on his way to duh candy sto
Masta Ace - The falling season
Matchbox - Going down there
Math for Math's Sake - Plazas
Maze Lops - Trazzler
Mazer's Big Torch Bucket - Lipsy
Bruce McArthur - People in pots
Bruce McArthur - Landscape architect blues
Bruce McArthur - Big 'n' playful
Tim McGraw - Do anything for charity
Tim McGraw - Do anything to make money
Tim McGraw - Do anything
Millie's Pork Bucket - Boxes won't go away
Money for Puny People - Lucky drop
Monkey Chuck - Arlene
Monkey Davis - Nervous
Monkey Pauline - Damnable
Moo Moo the Bow Wow - Trouser's ain't fresh no more
Motorhead - Clean your clock
Motorbutt - Clock your cleaners
Mrowl - Prowling for mrowl
Murphy and Nop - Dammy and slop
Murphy and Nuns - Drippy nun bitches
Murphy's Paw - Plaid and dumb
My Evening Girdle - Snippets and drabble
My Evening Snot - Things my animals forget to learn

David Nail - Fighter
Nasal and Tonsil - Lasers and urchers
Ned and the Headrumpers - Trowels
Aaron Neville - Apache
Newsboys - God's not dead
New York Dolls - We weren't real dolls
New York Dolls - We were real dolls
New York Dolls - We were really from Portland
No More Blouses - Farmy
No More Bundt Cakes - Prowler
No More Cactus - Deal or no no
Nothing That You Haven't Heard Before - Repeat it
Now Cows - Blouses and thermometers
Numb's Fumbler - Town and mouth

Octorub - Norbie
Oh No That Old Shithead Is Here Again - Rotten old schmucks with no manners
Oooh - Uuuuuh
Oooh Oooh - Uuuuuh uhhh
Opposite of Opposite - Lopposite
Orange Floyd - Sharp glide of the goon
The Orb - It's 1963 and the stripes are grinding
The Orb - Big fluffy omelets
Osmosis - USB #7
Other Muzzles - Howdy Pops
Oz and the Schnoz - Pow wows and monkeys

Painted Fuss - Nope
Pants and Pantless - Rainy press
Part Blub - Fran is ugly
Dolly Parton - Lots of money makes me happy
Dolly Parton - Lots of attention makes me happy
Dolly Parton - Lots of everything makes me happy
Paws With Fingers - Ink bus
Pet Shop Boys - Super
Poodle Powder - Dust of the dawgie
Mike Posner - At night, alone
Pranks for Steak Loads - Heaps of slop
The Puddles - Nappy load
Punk Biscuits - Sap
Punk Noodles - Take this noodle and cook it
Puny - Runny infection
Pusfergradison - Nay, the basket sayeth

Quacks - Trippy truck
Quails and Trucks - Lamb power
Queen For A Tray - Lower the pork
Query - Stop the questions
Quest for Dope - Smoking snuff
Quails Got Drunk - Beer and tissue paper
Quicker Than Daffy - Cords that don't work
Quiet Little Worm Thing - Never thought about it and never want to now
Quiz Germs - Links that don't work
Quurtie - Lousy bench

Radiohead - Daydreaming
Radiodud - Half of the basic shop
Radishes - Lavish stickers
Debbie Rafter - Lemme after
Raws - Raws and raws
Red Hot Chili Peppers - Dark necessities
Reel to Raoul - Mouthpiece
Reform Club - Never yesterday
Rely On Relish - Candy dash
Mick Rhodes & The Hard Eight - Paradise city
Roasted Trap - Asia's not there anymore
Rolling Bones - Get your mama's kraut
Rolling Chunks - Flower pots
Rolling Dammits - Sure thing not sure
Rolling Elderly People - Stocky plungers
Rolling Joints - Finky stinkers
Rolling Monkeys - Monkeys on Main Street
Rumpy - USBs and RTDs
Runny - Tippy's revenge
Rush - Beneath, between and behind
Ruzzer - Bow to the Ruzzer
Rylo - The dog's head is not steady anymore

Larry Samual - Barney doesn't have hugs for me
Santa Died Last Night - Presenting...
Santa Did It - Lamenting
Ed Sheeran - How come I never get mentioned in babysue?
Ed Sheeran - It's because my music is crummy, isn't it?
Ed Sheeran - Why do I look and sound so crummy?
Ed Sheeran - Are there any questions that have answers?
Blake Shelton - Can't help it if I'm a boring dullard
Blake Shelton - If you're into what I do you're obviously on the wrong web site
Blake Shelton - If people think I'm handsome they must really be confused and retarded
Shotgun Louise - Rampy dim
Shotgun Tina - Lousy lamps
Shotgun Zappa - Mouses and mouses
Smashing Drumsticks - Pass the pepper
Smuppy - The tatters that ground pepper
Snoop Dogg - Coolaid
Sparse - Kim's Ono spy mouse
Rick Springfield - Rocket science
Bruce Springsteen - I'm a generic old woman who never could sing
Mavis Staples - Livin' on a high note
Steely Dan - Doing it in a ditch
Barbra Streisand - Barfing up my breakfast
Styx - Suite madame blue: Radio broadcast 1977
Sultans of Swing - Subcontinental drift
Swap and Change - Loudness weird
Swenter - Flowers
Taylor Swift - How come I never get reviewed in babysue?
Taylor Swift - Well, if your publicist would send might.
Taylor Swift - Really?
Taylor Swift - Sure
Swy - Rent

Tai Tai - Lists
Talking Sheds - Lambs forking up tonsils
Tea For Lunch - Massachusetts isn't a country
Teepee Tupperware - Laura's butter pand
Telltale - Taller toll
Thuds - Ready for emperors
Thunder - All you can eat
Justin Timberlake - Can't stop being shallow
Tonk - Thoughtly
Trilly Dills and Damp Dippers - Witch white
Trunk Idiots - Laugh when it's all over
Try To Try - Stop and try
Tummy Bus - Lambs and prawns
Tunker - Lassie's paw
Twisted Sister - Rock 'N' Roll Saviours: The early years
Steven Tyler - We're all somebody from nowhere
TZ397 - Rowl the smunk

Ugly Banana - How do the hussy wink
Ugly Orange - Do the mouse
Ultraplucks - Eyebrow mania
Umbrella Vision - Church of tassle
Uncle Duck - Mushed
Uncle Pregnant - Does and rodents
Carrie Underwood - I'm proof that people have horrible taste
Carrie Underwood - Making money is more important than making good music
Carrie Underwood - Cliff diving lesbians
Keith Urban - Ripchord

Various Artists - A collection of dull dribble that no one will ever notice
Various Artists - We stopped makin' em because they stopped buyin' em
Various Artists - No one buys these kinds of compilations anymore so that's why we keep producing 'em
Various Artists - Tribute to someone whose name we can't remember
Various Artists - Trying to get something heard never works
Various Artists - The most boring bands you never cared to hear
Various Artists - We're the last ones to know the last ones
Various Artists - Our albums are always the first to get thrown away
Various artists - Who gets to eat the trash

Wally Is Near - Stamp that thing goodbye
Wanda and the Wandas - Limp
We Don't Get It - Now is the now
Well I Guess This Is Just Another One - Lumps
Whether Or Not - Lousy weather
Why Can't We Eat It In The Car - Marbly
William XIII - XIII or 238
Lucinda Williams - Ghosts of Highway 20
Wind That Goes - Don't

X - The day we tied our shoes wrong
Xie - La la the distance away
X-ray Pecs - Lookie away
X-ray Stats - Box cutters and tramplers
Xzistance - Lift down

Yack Yack - Tacky tick
Yanni - The dream concert
Yell All The Time For Whatever You Pay For It - Taxi service
Yellow Floyd - Park wide until noon
Yesterday's Potties - Damp portions
Yes We Will Be Bananas - Trap doors
Yes You - You guessed it
You might - Yes you might
You never - Well I never
Young and Bland - Stick, stuck
Yoyos for Panama - Sharp
Yoyos for Zop - Trollo mia presto
Yuck This Tastes Awful - Don't eat it then

Zappa and the Zappettes - Trown
Frank Zappa - How flowers got in the potty train
Frank Zappa - Lukewarm mouses
Zi - See Zi play
Zunk - How the leaves got patchy
Zupper - Towels for Blanche
Zyle - Twelve and fifty

©2018 LMNOP aka dONW7