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Eclectic Vibes - January 2011

CD/DVD Micro Reviews by Andrew Frey

Keller Williams

The explosively talented Keller Williams will be making his rounds through the northland in early February. In addition to his amazing musical versatility he has just released a children’s book called, “Because I said So.” This time he can be found playing solo shows at The Cabooze in Minneapolis, MN 2/3; Majestic Theater in Madison, WI 2/4 and at Park West in Chicago, IL 2/5 - where he will also be doing a special kids matinee show. Go Keller!

I think I speak for a lot of people when I say that I thought 2010 was the “Fuck You” year. From my perspective, Cee Lo Green’s song of the same name became a smash hit because it exemplified how frustrated and pissed off so many people are feeling. Not to say that there weren’t any good things that happened in 2010, but too often they were overshadowed by narrowminded shitspoon drool that we were confronted with on a daily basis. Numerous corporations continued singing the “Fuck You” tune as they layed people off and moved jobs abroad (while again taking retardedly disproportionate bonuses themselves). Another “Fuck You” was heard as the government shouldered the weight of deficit on shoulders of the next generation while dragging their heels on earth friendly measures and avoiding any measures that would actually reduce the deficit, like increase taxes on the wealthy. And finally a lot of disappointed and undereducated voters said “Fuck You” to the Democrats as a horrifying red tide swept the nation in November. And our newly elected Wisconsin governor immediately said “Fuck You” to the federal funds that would have created jobs and improved the infrastructure of the state in the form of the light rail project. Well “Fuck You,” right back at you, you slimy bastards! May you and Dick Cheney share a cell in your own private hell!

Music overall was timid, typical and generally uninspired. Few new names pushed their way to the surface as record labels played it safe in the face of tepid sales and rampant piracy. Large area festivals floundered as both 10KLF and Rothbury were not held this year. Smaller festivals were well attended as a result and that was the saving grace of my musical year.

Here’s my 2010 Top Ten Albums

1. MICHAEL FRANTI “The Sound Of Sunshine” (Capital)
2. CEE-LO GREEN “The Ladykiller” (Elektra/Asylum)
3. DEVO “Something For Everybody”(Warner Brothers)
4. CHICO MANN “Analog Drift” (Wax Poetics Records)
5. BRENDAN PERRY “The Ark” (Cooking Vinyl)
6. CHICO TRUJILLO “Chico de Oro” (Barbes Records)
7. JANAKA SELEKTA “Pushing Air” (Chaiwalla’s Boombox)
8. ALO “Man Of The World” (Brushfire Records)
9. MIKE PATTON “Mondo Cane” (Ipecac Recordings)
10. TRIBECASTAN “5 Star Cave” (Evergreene Music)

MICRO REVIEWS: This Month's Rating Scale is from 1 – FRAGMENTED to 10 – OPTIMIZED
Various Artists - Putumayo Presents Bossa Nova Around The World

Various Artists

Putumayo Presents Bossa Nova Around The World
Record Label: Putumayo Records
Review published: April 2011
Rating: 8

Bringing some heat and passion into the cold part of the year for the Northern Hemisphere, we are treated to 12 toe-tapping Bossa Nova tracks from Brazil, France, Norway, South Korea, Serbia, and beyond. They show off the global appeal and popularity for a sound that started in Brazil in the late 1950s.

(2988) ViewsPermalinkVarious Artists Website
Fiction City - Nova

Fiction City

Record Label:
Review published: April 2011
Rating: 9

A unique ‘band’ project consisting of two musicians, a visual artist, and a video engineer. Each track is represented by adventurous electronic music, but it also is paired with artwork and other visuals for an experientially rounded musical adventure. The theme they have chosen for this release revolves around an insane maniacal rapist.

(1845) ViewsPermalinkFiction City Facebook
Four Tet - There is Love In You

Four Tet

There is Love In You
Record Label: Domino Recording Co
Review published: April 2011
Rating: 9

A charming configuration of frequencies and waves that contort and undulate within this field of unexpected electronic compositions. Kieran Hebden is the prolific mastermind who came into the techno arena with a background in minimalist folk and jazz. But, he has somehow morphed his output into this very compelling ambient dance music.

(1974) ViewsPermalinkFour Tet WebsiteFour Tet Wiki
Buddy Guy - Living Proof

Buddy Guy

Living Proof
Record Label: Jive
Review published: April 2011
Rating: 10

Buddy Guy is a living legend that continues to create legends; both at his ‘Legends’ nightclub in Chicago and on each of his solo releases. Even though he is 74 years young, he can still spin a high octane blues riff or stomp on a sorrowful chord with enough of a flourish to win a Grammy nomination for “Living Proof.”

Mathew Haeffel - Rhythm Ethics

Mathew Haeffel

Rhythm Ethics
Record Label: Genre Good Inc
Review published: April 2011
Rating: 8

Haeffel is very serious and hard working Milwaukee musician that can be seen touring regularly throughout Wisconsin and the upper Midwest. His focused professionalism is evident here as he succinctly pours forth his acoustic rock musical soul into this Rhythm Ethics release that he wrote, produced and did the art for.

Danko Jones - Below The Belt

Danko Jones

Below The Belt
Record Label: Bad Taste Records
Review published: April 2011
Rating: 9

Smack-ass Canadian hard rock with attitude, intensity, and great grooves. This well tested trio knows how to chew up the traumatic lessons of life and love that our existence hands out to us. Learn and grow from past problems and percolate them into great musical lessons for us all to learn from. Hold on, this one doesn’t stop.

T.U.G.G.  - Come Sunrise


Come Sunrise
Record Label: Last Call Records
Review published: April 2011
Rating: 8

Reggae is a state of mind for some and comes from the heart for others. This western Wisconsin group continues to find reggae rhythms emanating from both their mind and heart on Come Sunrise. While they may float into some skate as well as some surf rock gusto, this release reflects the struggles and glory that comes from being a touring band in 2010.

(2262) ViewsPermalinkT.U.G.G. WebsiteT.U.G.G. Facebook
Telepath - Crash


Record Label: Telepath Music
Review published: April 2011
Rating: 9

A conflux of multi-national grooves purveyed by a wide array of musicians and singers teleported, tweaked, and coalesced into a cohesive musical unit, by motivating force and musical visionary Michael Christie. He also produced, recorded, and mixed the entire release.

(1751) ViewsPermalinkTelepath Website

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