Monday, February 28, 2011
"We were staying at Holiday Inns as they were usually clean and dependable, but ultimately extremely boring and soul-destroying homes from home. The monotony got to everybody after a time. It was not possible to walk into the identical room in twenty different cities without wanting to hurt it, just a little. If there was anything built to be destroyed, it was the two-storey, motel model Holiday Inn."
- The Faces keyboardist Ian McLagan on life on the road in the 1970s United States. The band recently announced they would be touring again, with a surprise lead singer, Mick Hucknall of Simply Red and bass player, ex-Sex Pistol Glen Matlock. On the tour itinerary is an appearance at the prestigious Goodwood Festival, one of my favorite events in the world.
Monday, February 21, 2011
Wednesday, February 16, 2011
Hmmm, could this be what I think it is? A super heavy box from The Sound Organisation delivered by Chris the FedEx guy? Well, if you have already scanned the attached headline, you know what must be inside...
Deep under a thick pair of double boxes lurks a hefty branded wooden crate much like the kind used to deliver our favorite wines? Hefty woodscrews and dovetail joinery...had to run upstairs to borrow a power screwdriver.
Ahh, an Osiris instruction manual and a thick injection-molded foam cover with the Rega logo in relief letters across the top. Yes, the top of Rega's Reference kit, the 162 wpc., no-holds-barred Osiris integrated amplifier has landed.
Nestled snugly within foam confines lies the Osiris, much like its ancient Egyptian namesake, the god of the afterlife. And what a fine afterlife it will be with stereo sound like this. Imagine how it would sound with Radiohead's epic Pyramid Song wafting from the speakers.
With the included Rega Reference Mains power cable attached and hefty milled aluminum remote in hand, the Osiris is prepared for rising. And by "hefty", I do mean heavy enough to be a possible murder weapon in CLUE.
Powered up with, KEF Reference 205/2s attached, the Osiris is all of the superlatives and more. After spending a long weekend with exotic gear at CES, I thought that I had heard it all. I was wrong. For a fantastic in-depth revue of Osiris' virtues, we invite you to read Jeff Dorgay's glowing review in ToneAudio magazine.
Or stop in and hear it for yourself.
It's worth the trip.
Thursday, February 10, 2011
Scottish chanteuse Isobel Campbell recently teamed with crooner Mark Lanegan for a third album Hawk on Vanguard Records that not only achieved a steady stream of critical acclaim, but also made many Best of 2010 lists.
Both artists are personal favorites of mine, so I'll try to avoid the cliche-laden descriptives that I've seen of the angelic-voiced Campbell with the fire-and-brimstone bellow of Lanegan and encourage you to check it out and let the music do the talking.
There is more video as well as streaming audio at the WBEZ 91.5 website. I strongly encourage you to pick up Hawk, available on vinyl as well as CD, or the duo's superb second album Sunday At Devil Dirt which features several US-only bonus tracks and a fantastic soundstage and sparse "sitting
in the room" production.
Wednesday, February 2, 2011
I've been telling anyone who will listen (and even some that won't) that the BEST place to find new music is on Last.fm which absolutely slays the overrated Pandora with depth, obscurity and a fantastic associative matching engine. And a few months ago Last.fm treated me to this gem.
Do you like the Jesus & Mary Chain? The Ventures? The Flaming Stars?
How 'bout some fuzzed-out-surf-noir-cascading-feedback-psychofried-rawk n' roll?
If so, check out our friends from Brooklyn, The Vandelles. It's all of the above and more. Their new single Get Around is up at Alarm Press.
And of course, being a reformed OCD CD-collecting-collector completist, I had to contact The Vandelles and pick up multiple copies of their impossible-to-find previous releases to share with my worldwide friends. Both the self-titled EP and the full length Del Black Aloha are available for purchase in our Discogs store.
Not enough? If you are in the New York metro area, go see them at Pianos in the lower east side Saturday night.