Friday, December 21, 2007

GO HOME PRODUCTIONS - "Christmastime in Boston"

Courtesy of the fantasteriffic Go Home Productions (a.k.a. Mark Vidler, the #1 mash-up DJ on earth as far as Green Alien Chick is concerned) comes this sweet slice of holiday cheer. It's 4/5 of one of the greatest rock songs ever written, given that extra nip of Holiday Cheer by DJ M.V.

This one goes out to my peeps in Beantown; to the memory of Brad Delp, who died last winter; and to all my lovely readers...

...all 3.5 of you. Kidding!

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good 2008!
DOWNLOAD, Ye Merry Gentlemen and Women

Thursday, December 20, 2007

VAN HALEN - Los Angeles, CA 2007!!!

Alright, seriously: last Van fockin' Halen post for awhile (but my first from the current reunion tour). In my defense, this is the show I went to last week! Plus, almost as importantly, this might be one of the best audience recordings I've ever heard...

So for Greggy, Davey, Grant and every other Rowdy Motherfocker who was there, rawk this shit hawd.

Staples Center - Los Angeles, CA - December 14, 2007 (AUD)

Holiday Greetings from M.C. Rikki Farr, 1970

"Fun. Nice. Life. Youth. Beautiful! I'm all for it."

Monday, December 17, 2007

THE DOORS - Isle of Wight, England 1970

Yesterday I went to a mellow little in-store with Robby Krieger of The Doors at the just-opened/soon-to-close Rhino Pop-Up Store near 3rd and Fairfax in L.A. Robby is a cool old cat, and most kind to all the fans there (not as many as I thought there would be, given how insanely packed the 40th Anniversary celebration on the Sunset Strip was last November, the very definition of "clusterfuck." Morrison would have dug the chaos there big-time.)

My first Doors post is one of their last shows, very close to The End for Jim and the boys (their final performance would be three months later, appropriately given in New Orleans). Surprisingly, this one's a powerhouse, taken from the near-disastrous 1970 Isle of Wight Festival, an event legendarily documented in Murray Lerner's jaw-dropping film Message to Love. There's only a brief clip of "When the Music's Over" in the doc, with no inkling of how tight and sharp a performance it really is. Fittingly, this version "The End" takes off in a few rather odd directions. Great stereo sound too.

Isle of Wight Festival - England - August 29, 1970 (SBD)

Friday, December 14, 2007

VAN HALEN - US Festival, Devore, CA 1983

Didn't think I'd be posting any new VH for awhile...until I suddenly realized I'm going to see them again tonight at the Staples Center! About 2 hours from now, in fact. So, bully for me -- and for you...

Anyone remember the US Festivals? Me neither. The brainchildren of Apple's co-founder Steve Wozniak, there were only two, in the summers of 1982 and '83. This show is from the second year's so-called Heavy Metal Sunday. A typically drunk-n-sloppy (on Dave's part anyway; the first number isn't halfway over before he shrieks "I forgot the fuckin' words!") show that also happens to be probably the hugest gig they ever played, to this day.

US Festival, Glen Helen Regional Park - Devore, CA - May 29, 1983 (SBD)

MARTA: The Next-Best, or Maybe Best, Orion Slave Girl

Lo, today I present Vina's celestial sister in verdant alien hawt-ness. Yes, I give you...MARTA!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

LED ZEPPELIN - London, England 2007!!! (TASTY NEW HOTLINKS)

Here it is, the Gig of the Year, of the Decade, of the Bloody 21st Century. It happened in London two nights ago; apparenly, a few folks have been watching video clips on them Internets and digging what they see.

As for hearing, I present a solid audience recording, no match in production for The Song Remains the Same, but sounding quite like one was actually there, about halfway back and dead center, surrounded by reasonably respectful, non-obno concertgoers.

Not bad for being available one day after the gig ended. Thanks to good old Nargo the Bort for this one. Strider!

(Below are some fresh new links, again thanks to Nargo the Bort!)

02 Arena - London, England - December 10, 2007 (AUD)

Friday, December 7, 2007

"SMiLE" by Brian Wilson and The Beach Boys: 4 Versions

Now this is a happy one. From the legendary musical meltdown of 1966-'67 to the unqualified triumph of 2004-'05, the saga of Brian Wilson and SMiLE needs no introduction, if plenty of explication. Feel free to read all about the album's tortured history (ending in failure, lunacy, Bedtime for Brian, The Abominable Dr. Landy, 20-plus years in the wilderness) and miraculous resurrection (starting with Van Dyke Parks and Darian Sahanaja, a Top 15 CD, sold-out tours, a deluxe DVD, a Grammy Award) while downloading these four very different bootleg takes on the original sessions. There a dozens of SMiLE variations floating around online -- and I got me a bushel of 'em, don't ya know -- but these are four of my faves.

One version, I won't say which, sticks to the now-official 2004 tracklist; several recreate what might have been the 1967 tracklist; another heads off the rez completely (and SMiLE is a big ol' rez, as any obsessive could tell you). How these mad, mysterious mixers have found places for the tasty bits that didn't make it in '04 -- namely "You’re Welcome," "Cool, Cool Water," "He Gives Speeches/She’s Goin’ Bald" and of course "George Fell Into His French Horn" -- is but one of the intense pleasures to be heard here...

Because SMiLE, despite its agonized 37-year creation, is about nothing if not pleasure. It's a work of pure beauty that waltzes right past its occasional silliness and weirdness to settle right in your soul; that's the reason God made Brian Wilson.

This photo of my man was taken last Sunday, at the 30th annual Kennedy Center Honors in my hometown of Washington, D.C., where he received the highest arts award in the land...

And if that smile isn't the genuine article, I don't know what is.

SMiLE (1966-'67) (STU)

Anne Wallace mix

DJ Mic Luv mix

Fast Eddie mix

Mok mix

Why the World Needs Music Blogs

As usual, The Onion says it best...

"Local Radio Station Has Got Some Doobie Brothers Coming Up For You...

NORWALK, CT — According to sources, local radio station 95.9 The Fox has got some Doobie Brothers on the way for you in just a few minutes, along with some Stones, some Skynyrd, and they'll kick it all off with some Hendrix. Though they are just wrapping up another 50 minutes of nonstop rock—you heard from Marshall Tucker, Boston, a little Steve Miller "Rock 'N Me" mixed in there, and they closed it out with a Zeppelin twin-spin—you're going to want to stay tuned because they've got another nine in a row headed your way at the top of the hour, as well as a chance to win some great prizes, including two tickets to see the Eagles live at Mohegan Sun. But first, the station has announced plans to take you all the way back to 1972 with this classic tune."

Monday, December 3, 2007

LED ZEPPELIN - Largo, MD 1977

An epic whomper of a Zep show from my hometown arena, the late, lamented Capital Centre (of Heavy Metal Parking Lot infamy). I never did get to see Zeppelin -- just too damn young at the time.

Instead, on the day of this show I would have been at Washington, D.C.'s nearby Uptown Theater -- on the occasion of my buddy Robin Brunson's 8th birthday party -- seeing a little sci-fi movie called Star Wars for the very first any true fanboy knows, Star Wars opened three days earlier. (As it turns out, Robin is now 50% of an acclaimed U.K. technoid music duo called Hexstatic.)

May 28th, 1977 was also the date of shows by the Grateful Dead in Hartford, CT and Elvis Presley in Philadelphia, PA...not a bad day to be an east coast rock-n-roller.

Word is that this soundboard recording, unoffically titled "The Powhatan Confederacy," was discovered only months ago. Sound quality is solid and the set list is impeccable; this is said to be among the best performances available from the 1977 tour, which would turn out to be Zep's last ever in the U.S.

Capital Centre - Largo, MD - May 28, 1977 (SBD)