Monthly Archives: November 2007

“On a spaceship somewhere sailing across an empty sea”

The Kinks – “This Time Tomorrow” from Lola Versus Powerman and the Moneygoround, Part One (1970)This song was used to great affect in Wes Anderson’s latest, The Darjeeling Limited. I can’t really recommend the movie but this Kinks album is terrific.

Buy it here

Posted by Jordy

7 Comments

Filed under 1970s, Rock

“Connected are the promenades and waterways/the living waves of harbor nights and city days”

Ted Leo/Pharmacists – “Bridges, Squares” from Hearts of Oak (2003)

Ted Leo writes great songs about walking around. I’ve never been to Beantown, but this song–wherein a walk turns into a rumination on city planning, the commodification of bohemianism, the inter-connectedness of all things, and God’s plans for man–makes me want to go.

Buy Ted here

Posted by Glenn

2 Comments

Filed under 2000s, Punk, Rock

“Here they always play my songs”

Love – “Maybe The People Would Be The Times Or Between Clark And Hilldale” from Forever Changes (1967)

I just learned that Neil Young was originally slated to produce Love’s late-60s psych-classic. Thanks Wikipedia. This mariachi-esque pop tune sports one of the all-time great song titles, standing out amid an album full of great song titles. Not to mention great songs.

Buy it here

Posted by Glenn

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Filed under 1960s, Psychedelic, Rock

Which colors?

Charles Mingus – “Self-Portrait in Three Colors” from Mingus Ah Um (1959)

“Self-Portrait” is one of the best examples of Mingus’s beautiful polyphonic writing. Sounds like classical music, almost. This track was originally written for John Cassavettes’s first film, Shadows, and is included on Ah Um, one of the essential albums, and a good record for jazz-curious rock fans to pick up.

Buy it here

More Mingus on SWR

Posted by Glenn

4 Comments

Filed under 1950s, Instrumental, Jazz

Paydirt

I have recently acquired A Tree With Roots (Scorpio, 2001), a bitchingly comprehensive bootleg of Dylan and the Band’s famed Basement Tapes.  It is a remastered version of The Genuine Basement Tapes and contains 108 songs (incl. several alternate takes). The quality is generally great and very raw.  It’s a revelation, believe me.

These tunes were recorded sometime in the Spring/Summer of 1967 in a house in West Saugerties, NY.

As I digest it, I will keep SWR readers informed of the finer points.

Best,

Jordy

More info here and here.

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Filed under 1960s, Americana, Folk, Rock, Roots rock

“Teach me some melodious sonnet”

Sufjan Stevens – “Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing” from Songs for Christmas, Vol. II (2006)

Thanks to all our readers. We hope your Thanksgiving is as you always remembered it.

Help make Christianity hip

Posted by Jordy

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Filed under 2000s, Folk, Traditional

This little light of mine

Wolf Parade – “Shine a Light” from Apologies to the Queen Mary (2005)
The Constantines – “Shine a Light” from Shine a Light (2003)
The Rolling Stones – “Shine a Light” from Exile on Main Street (1972)

Since I’ll be stuffed and computerless for the the rest of the week, it’s time to say thanks to Jordy–the power behind SWR–and to our loyal listeners? lookers? surfers? with three songs called “Shine a Light,” none of which are covers of each other.

Funny story: the last song played at Jordy’s wedding reception was the Stones’s “Shine a Light.” It was late, the lights were on, and the DJ had already packed up half the speakers. Perfect time for an soulful anthem. All of us left picked ourselves up off of our chairs and began dancing, drunk, tired. After a minute or so, just as it was starting to get emotional, the CD began skipping. We tried to dance for a few more seconds until the skips got too bad. The DJ shut it off, we threw up our hands and went home.

Not included: “Shine” by Collective Soul.

Buy Teen Wolf
Buy absolution from the guilt involved with executing your own son
Buy drugs for Keith Richards
Posted by Glenn

2 Comments

Filed under 1970s, 2000s, Rock

“It’s time the tale were told.”

The Smiths – “Reel Around the Fountain” from The Smiths (1984)

By all accounts, Morrissey is an asshole and I don’t like the Smiths very much at all but there is an undeniable beauty in this song.

Buy it here, if you must

Posted by Jordy (not a 13 year-old girl)

2 Comments

Filed under 1980s, Rock

“Living at night isn’t helping my complexion”

Pere Ubu – “Final Solution” from Terminal Tower (1985) [originally released as single (1976)]

Absolutely killer song from Cleveland’s god-like Pere Ubu. Listen for Peter Laughner’s great guitar work. Laughner is also known for being quoted by Wilco and eulogized by Lester Bangs.

Buy the Ubu

Visit Ubu on the web here

–Glenn

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Filed under 1970s, Punk, Rock

“I was wrong, for I was watching from the window up above”

George Jones – “The Window Up Above” (1960)

One of my favorite country singers discovered since the great country music voyage began is balladeer George Jones. In this song, he teaches us the important lesson that voyeurism never does anybody any good. If only he hadn’t been spying, if only he’d been sleeping instead of watching…

Buy George here

–Glenn

2 Comments

Filed under 1960s, Country, Singer-Songwriter

“All evening, yeah!”

Sam Prekop – “Something” from Who’s Your New Professor (2005)

Breezy.

Buy it here

–Glenn

1 Comment

Filed under 2000s, Rock

“Let him take it from the top.”

The Band – “Stage Fright” from Stage Fright (1970)

The Band were pirates of all manners of American music. And they did it better than any other group of musicians that I can think of.

Each one of them was so accomplished.

I love Rick Danko’s vocal on this song. It’s strong but strained, which gives it that right amount of fragility.

Get caught in the spotlight

Posted by Jordy

2 Comments

Filed under 1970s, Rock, Roots rock

Friday at the Village Vanguard

Bill Evans – “Solar” from Sunday At the Village Vanguard (1961)

Bill Evans’s four records with the otherworldly Scott LaFaro on bass and Paul Motian on drums–Portrait in Jazz, Explorations, Sunday, and Waltz For Debby–are jazz essentials and contain some of the most beautiful music ever. Known for sensitive interpretations of ballads, the trio could also tear into an uptempo tune, as evidenced by this take of Miles Davis’s “Solar” (pronounced So-LAHR). The group’s telepathic interplay is well-documented, but this track, along with many others on the above-mentioned records, remains surprising on each listen.

There’s a good reissue of the Village Vanguard dates originally presented on Sunday and Waltz.

Buy Bill here

–Glenn

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Filed under 1960s, Instrumental, Jazz

“What can I do to make you listen?”

Roky Erickson – “Starry Eyes” from All That Do My Rhyme (1995)

Originally released on the 1985 Clear Night for Love EP, this version features Lou Ann Barton on vocals with Roky.

Buy Roky here

-Jordy

2 Comments

Filed under 1990s, Rock, Roots rock

“Wait (wade?) in the fire”

Jeff Buckley – “Grace” from Grace (1994)

It took me a while to get into this guy, whose music can go from sounding like a genius combination of Pearl Jam, Van Morrison, and R. Kelly to a half-witted mix of Hootie & The Blowfish and U2, all in the same song. And I was doubtful when my brother said, “Aw yeah, this guy’s got a song on the Shrek soundtrack.” But Grace sounds good: a.) on headphones and b.) in a mix with Hüsker Dü and Temple of the Dog.

Buy it here

–Glenn

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Filed under 1990s, Rock, Singer-Songwriter