Like the last few weeks, The BCPF had the day off on Friday and we went to Underdog Records a day early. We got some good stuff and I’m going to share that with you, now!
- Michael Kiwanuka – Kiwanuka — I first heard pieces of this album when I was making the commercial for Underdog Records on The Less Desirables. I thought it was great. Jonathan kept getting copies and selling out before I could get there to get one. So, I had him order one for me specifically. Here it was, finally. And it was well worth the wait. Lots of good ambient blues, R&B, rock, all that in one. A great album that even The BCPF loved and was disappointed there wasn’t a download code in the sleeve. New.
- The Smiths – Strangeways, Here We Come — Gotta love some miserable Brits, eh? “I Started Something I Couldn’t Finish,” “Stop Me If You Think You’ve Heard This One Before,” “Last Night I Dreamt That Somebody Loved Me” and one of my favorite Smiths tunes, “Girlfriend in a Coma” is on this album. VG++.
- Elvis Costello & The Imposters – Look Now — A 2018 release from EC, it sounds like old EC and that is a good thing. He wrote most of the stuff himself but there were three songs co-written by Burt Bacharach and one co-written by Carole King. A really good listen. VG++.
- Pink Floyd – Atom Heart Mother — Released a month and a half before I was (born), this is Pink Floyd’s fifth studio album and consists of mostly instrumentals (36:44 of the 52:06 total running time). I didn’t think I’d care for it as sometimes Floyd’s instrumental stuff idles on, but I did enjoy it. It is a good and relaxing atmospheric listen. VG+.
- Faces – Ooh La La — This is the fourth and final studio album by Faces. By this time, Rod Stewart had already had a hit with “Maggie May” and his first few solo albums, and the singer had become increasingly distanced from some of his Faces bandmates, who were frustrated by the fact that by this point they had come to be perceived by the public (and even by some concert promoters) as little more than Stewart’s backing band for live work (according to Wikipedia). I had never heard the title track until the Amazon Echo commercials and when I found out who it was, I was like, yeah, that sounds like Rod Stewart. Turns out it was Ronnie Wood who sang it, co-writing it with Ronnie Lane, the bassist. The cover is cool, you can “squeeze” the top of the sleeve and the mouth and eyes move. VG+.
- The Who – Magic Bus — Oh we crazy Americans in the 60s and 70s. This is a compilation album of previously released material and was not issued in the UK. They were capitalizing on the success of the song by the same name. The BCPF picked it up! VG+.
- Ringo Starr – Beaucoups Of Blues — A most peculiar album, indeed. It’s not really that peculiar, but it’s certainly Ringo’s take on American country and western. It’s pure “tears in my beer.” Not bad for what it was, but… VG+.
- Angel City – Face To Face — I had never heard of Angel City until Eugene had me review Two Minute Warning on his hard rock list. You can read my review here. In Australia, they were known as The Angels, but so they wouldn’t be confused with the band Angel (KISS’ rostermates on Casablanca Records), they changed to Angel City. This was their second overall release and the first for the US. It’s a decent listen, as we did so whilst cleaning/straightening our downstairs. Rock, punk, even metal at some points. VG+.
- Queensrÿche – Promised Land — This wasn’t purchased at Underdog Records. I believe this came from Bobby the Drummer (from Heavens Sake) when he worked at CEMA (EMI) when we first met. He knew I was a Queensryche fan and gave it to me. I had either forgotten that I had it or where it was (or a combo of the two) and I found it located behind a filing cabinet that I have in my living room. You’d have to see it… but it was still sealed. So, I promptly opened it up and gave it a spin. Operation: Mindcrime will always be my favorite Queensryche album (second favorite overall of all time) and Empire will always be my second favorite ‘Ryche album. But, to me, this is their most underrated. It is just what I wanted to do musically at that time and I still love it. It’s still hard rock but has a more modern edge to it (at least in the mid=90s) and Geoff Tate was still singing and not talk-singing through songs. He hadn’t quite blown himself out at this point. The songs are well-written, still tell stories and still sounds like Queensryche. I love this album and will listen to it again, really soon. Have I mentioned that I love this album?
It’s Christmas time and that means gift certificates and Underdog Records has plenty of them, in any denomination you want. The cool thing is these come on old 45s/singles/7″ whatever you call them. And, Jonathan can still special order anything on vinyl that you need in time for your special vinyl lover (I can give you a list if you’re interested *wink*). Also, Underdog Records will be putting out freshly acquired used vinyl every single business day until Christmas. Also, also, there are plenty of used receivers, turntables, speakers and more in the store if you know someone who has said they’d love to start listening to records (perhaps again) but don’t know where to start. Jonathan can help you out. Listen to each new episode of The Less Desirables to hear the TLD/UR special of the week. I use Discogs to track my awesome record collection and to make sure I don’t double dip something I already have. The BCPF used it to “random grab” a record during our cleaning time yesterday. Much fun, indeed!
Until tomorrow, keep spinning!
“Let me whisper my last goodbyes, I know – it’s serious.” – “Girlfriend in a Coma” (Morrissey/Marr)