Wednesday, December 2, 2009

MATT'S MUSIC REPORT


Recent Releases of Note


  • Beatles - entire catalogue*


  • Adrian Belew Power Trio - e (available at Belew's website


  • Johnny Cash - A Heartbeat and a Guitar [book]


  • Johnny Cash - I See a Darkness [graphic novel]


  • Elvis Costello - Secret, Profane & Sugarcane


  • Elvis Costello - Live at the El Mocambo [reissue]


  • Elvis Costello - Spectacle [TV DVD set]


  • Crosby, Stills & Nash - Demos


  • Bob Dylan - Christmas in the Heart


  • Jay Farrar/Ben Gibbard - One Fast Move Or I’m Gone


  • Flight of the Conchords - I Told You I Was Freaky


  • Genesis - The Movie Box 1981-2007 [5 DVD]


  • Nanci Griffith - The Loving Kind


  • George Harrison - Let It Roll [compilation]


  • Jayhawks - Music from the North Country


  • Paul McCartney - Good Evening, New York City [CD/DVD]


  • Willie Nelson - American Classic


  • Willie Nelson - Lost Highway


  • Willie Nelson - Special w/Ray Charles [DVD]


  • Randy Newman - The Princess and the Frog [sndtrk]


  • Tom Petty - Live Anthology [4 CD set]


  • Frank Sinatra - New York [4 CD/1 DVD box set]


  • Son Volt - American Central Dust


  • Regina Spektor - Far**


  • Bruce Springsteen - “Wrecking Ball” [iTunes single]


  • They Might Be Giants - Here Comes Science!


  • Loudon Wainwright III - High Wide & Handsome: the Charlie Poole Project [2-disc]


  • Wilco - Wilco (the album)


  • “Weird Al” Yankovic - Internet Leaks [iTunes EP]


  • “Weird Al” Yankovic - Essential [2-disc compilation]


  • Neil Young - Neil Young Archives,Vol.1***


    • *The complete original UK Beatles catalogue has been remastered for CD. The remasters are in stereo and each album will be available individually, with the previously separate ‘Past Masters’ discs (which collected the non-LP tracks) combined as one set. The stereo albums (16 discs) are also available as a box set. The albums that were originally mixed for mono (‘Please Please Me’ through ‘The White Album’) will make up a remastered mono box, are not available individually.

      ** Includes 5 tracks produced by Jeff Lynne.

      ***The archives project, announced about 15 years ago, is finally here! It’s available in multiple formats: 10-discs on Blu-Ray with Book, 10-discs on DVD with Book, 8-discs on CD with booklet. The advantage of the Blu-Ray ($300) and DVD ($200) sets is that they will have both audio and video content. Also, with Blu-Ray you will be able to download new content as it becomes available. The CD ($100) set just has the music and no book, which is just fine with me. All the discs, and the book, can be purchased separately of the box sets.




      Upcoming Releases

      • Peter Gabriel - Scratch My Back [2/15]


      • Ringo Starr - Y Not [1/12]


      • Watson Twins - Talking to You, Talking to Me [2/9]



        On Tour in the Tri-State



      • Abbey Road on the River - Louisville – 5/27 – 5/31


      • Stacey Earle & Mark Stuart - Columbus, IN – 2/27; Kent - 3/6


      • Jim Gaffigan - Columbus – 2/27


      • Magnetic Fields - Bloomington – 3/5


      • Manhattan Transfer - Vincennes – 3/6


      • Poco - Cincinnati – 2/27


      • Star Wars: in Concert - Cincinnati – 12/11; Indianapolis – 12/12

      Reviews

      Bob Dylan - Christmas in the Heart (Columbia) - If you like Bob Dylan's voice (and who doesn't), but wished he would make a straightforward, Andy Williams-style Christmas album, then this CD is for you! Crooning his way through a set of Christmas standards, this is Dylan as you've never heard him before. Personally, I really like it. The songs start in earnest with slick production and Welk-esque backing singers, then Bob croaks his way in. It brings a smile to my face every time.

      Flight of the Conchords - I Told You I Was Freaky (Sub Pop) - As with it's predecessor, this song collection from Season 2 of their HBO series mostly falters without the visuals and the context of the show. The packaging, however, is a thing of beauty that recalls the LPs of long ago. A die-cut tri-fold with a 70s-ish illustration as the cover. Inside, the CD has it's own inner sleeve and it comes with a fold-out poster of the album cover art. Alas, the interior picture, a live shot of the duo in concert, only makes you wish you had more of their live debut EP, a form where they excel.

      Willie Nelson - Lost Highway (Lost Highway) - If you were a 76-year old living legend, the last thing folks expect you to do is tour 2/3 of the year and release four albums...unless you're Willie Nelson. Only two of this year's releases are new material, the Texas swing of 'Willie & the Wheel' and the songbook-mining of 'American Classic'. 'Naked Willie' took This collection is a compilation of his past six years on the Lost Highway label, with plenty of goodies to entice completists to buy the songs again. Like Willie's albums, the collection is a mixed bag of mainstream country, alt.country, Western swing, live cuts and even reggae. As for the goodies, there's three previously unreleased songs and his duet hit with Toby Keith - "Beer for My Horses".

      They Might Be Giants - Here Comes Science! (Disney Sound) - Continuing their lucrative association with Disney, TMBG brings us the latest in goofy but educational albums and their fourth bona fide children's record. They once explored children's music as a goof, a la 1994's "Why Does the Sun Shine?", a remake from a 1959 album of science-based children's songs. Fifteen years later they go all the way with their own science record, paying homage to their earlier foray with a faster version, but following it up with "Why Does the Sun Really Shine?", drawing on a half-century of expanded knowledge. The rest runs the gamut of astronomy, biology, physics, paleontology and chemistry. This is aimed at older kids than the previous two Disney Sound releases. Yours truly, still a kid, after all, can't stop dancing along to "Electric Car". Like 'Here Come the ABCs' and 'the 123s', 'Science' includes a DVD with videos of the songs.

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