Best of 2011

January 3, 2012 § Leave a comment

Black Lips – Arabia Mountain

The 6th cd for this Atlanta, GA punk/garage combo explores a wide swath of retro styles. Melodic, yet rockin’ with a hint of psychedelia. Highly recommended.

John Paul Keith – The Man That Time Forgot

Described by a fellow touring musician has Memphis’ own Buddy Holly, JPK’s The Man That Time Forgot certainly does Buddy proud. I always feel like I have to acknowledge that my favorite bands are derivative but that’s what roots means isn’t it. JPK does what many others do but does it extremely well. Melodic roots rock. Lyrically clever and perfectly structured pop songs made to sound easy. But if it was, why don’t more people do it? Because it isn’t and JPK is damn good at it.

Lydia Loveless – Indestructible Machine

Just turned 21 and releasing your second full length cd on Bloodshot Records is not a bad start on the music biz resume. Part punk, part-country Lydia Loveless has schooled herself on Loretta Lynn, The Knitters and Neko Case (or at least it sounds like she has). She has a big voice and a band with a rough sound. Lyrically clever and melodically strong, Loveless has the kind of voice and delivery that may very well keep her recording for a long, long time.


Freedy Johnston/Ha Ha Tonka on May 14

April 27, 2011 Comments Off on Freedy Johnston/Ha Ha Tonka on May 14

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8 PM at the Hoogland Center for the Arts

April 27, 2011 “Usual Suspects” is NPR’s ‘Song of the Day’

In “Usual Suspects,” the opening track from Death of a Decade, the Missouri band Ha Ha Tonka busts out of the gates like classic Replacements on an Ozark bender. Premised on a killer riff, a great beat and singer Brian Roberts’ throaty roar, Ha Ha Tonka may have created the catchiest mandolin-driven rock song since “Losing My Religion.”

“Usual Suspects” reflects the hothouse passions that run deep and familiar to anyone who has ever lived in the close quarters of a small community. Roberts narrates the fraught and indignant emotions of a would-be paramour, faced with competition for his affections from friends and rivals alike: “In this little town, oh, she’s such a scandal / Nobody gonna get a handle on her / If you lay it down, oh, it ain’t a gamble / It’s the surest thing going on around here.” Desire, revulsion and obsessive longing — it’s love, American style, courtesy of a terrific Missouri band with deep musical roots in its regional traditions.


Playlist 10.24.10

October 25, 2010 § Leave a comment

playlist 2010.24.10

Playlist 9.26.10

September 26, 2010 § Leave a comment

playlist 9.26.10

Friday at 7:30 Get your tix now!

September 19, 2010 § Leave a comment

Playlist 9.19.10

September 19, 2010 § Leave a comment

playlist 9.19.10

Playlist 9.12.10

September 18, 2010 § Leave a comment