July 30, 2008


The news came down that The Rolling Stones has signed a 3-album deal with access to their back catalogue deal with Universal.  All of this surprises me a bit given their unfortunate but obvious inability to build a new album that burns up the charts or even leaves any lasting impression.  Now, don’t get me all wrong here.  I’m a huge Stones fan from way back in my youth.  Everything they did mattered.  They did it all right, all of it.  Until a point came and all of that musical prevalence disappeared and they became a hits-playing juggernaut.  With a massive back catalogue.

I saw the Stones twice, both times in Chicago.  The first was in 1975 at the Chicago Amphitheatre, and the second was at Soldier Field.  The Amphitheatre show was unforgettable for me and the Soldier Field show was a party unmatched.  But eventually, their later albums didn’t do the work that we expected and yet they still toured with monstrous stages to promote them.  Yes, audiences attended but I had quit by then because I didn’t want to see my heroes aging as I have already heard them age.  I still refuse to see them for the same reason.

I wondered, for a band that has often set musical standards, that they could no longer make a new musical statement.  Their new albums are good but in a listenable way…nothing that causes me to break out in a sing-a-long.  No more “Jumping Jack Flash,” or “Tumbling Dice.”  But I believe that they should still be able to produce a gem like “Waiting on a Friend.”  Nevertheless, the Stones sell out almost everywhere they go and it isn’t because of a new album.  So I wonder again…why the deal?  Perhaps it was to get exclusive use of the back catalogue, which I can understand.  But ONLY if there is a deal in place to re-release ‘to-die-for’ Deluxe Edition re-masters that EMI failed to produce – or would not do.

I guess that I just don’t understand the ball that is rolling here.  The stores – what few are willing to carry inventory – are choked with the Stones catalogue.  I’m sure Amazon has more than enough to meet any demand placed on them for a title.  All of this brings me back to the original intent of this write-up.  What’s the point of Universal inking the Stones to what was likely a very expensive deal when Universal should be concentrated elsewhere.  I just don’t see the dollar sense in this one unless it is to erase being the only major label to not have The Rolling Stones signed to them.

Something to say?

We wanted to say a few words about the death of Joe Beck, a Jazz guitarist associated with many of our musical treasures like Miles Davis and Frank Sinatra. His guitar work complemented the art of many and a loss such as his always lessens the quality of our music by a bit. But he now keeps great company with that unmatched band in the the sky. And he adds to their strength. Have fun, Joe!!

I needed a day longer on The Enemy UK review but it will be up for Friday. Today, we have three reviews that include Wake the Sleeper (2008) by Uriah Heep, The Sum of No Evil (2007) from Swedish Progressive band, The Flower Kings, and an indie release from Dw Dunphy called Modernism.

We'll see you again on Friday.

If you have missed the last As The Disc Spins (updated), check it out here.

To access the previous site and catch up, click here.





Copeland International Arts (CIA Records) will release the latest Electronica/HipHop fusion for Bellydance music from Beats Antique.  Their latest album is called Collide and is scheduled for August 26.

We had previously mentioned the upcoming Blues Traveler album called North Hollywood Shootout, which is expected on August 26 from Verve Forecast Records.  This is an anticipated title and will feature the vocals and harmonica of Bruce Willis on a track called “Free Willis.”

There is a man who is electrifying the world with his bass playing prowess in the tradition of Jaco Pastorius.  His name is Richard Bona and he has an album coming from EmArcy Records.  It is called Bona Makes You Sweat and will be made available on August 26.

Delta Spirit is releasing an album on Rounder Records and we couldn’t be happier ‘round here.  The album is called Ode to Sunshine and features 11 rockin’ tracks that have to be heard.  Hailing from San Diego, these mates have already gained a following that you’re sure to join with once you hear them.  They’re quite good.  Ode to Sunshine arrives on August 26.

Paste Magazine has called the self-titled album from The Gabe Dixon Band, “…one of my favourite records of the year.”  Amongst other accolades, this album is being given some love.  This album is slated for release on August 26 by Fantasy Records.

If you remember The Outsiders, who enjoyed a hit with “Time Won’t Let Me” then you’ll know who Sonny Geraci is…or at least what he sounds like.  Geraci was the lead singer of that ‘60s band.  In addition, he was the vocalist for Climax, who enjoyed a TopTen hit with “Precious and Few.”  Fuel Records will release Precious & Few: Greatest Hits for Sonny Geraci, who will also provide versions of other hits of the same time-frame.  He augments this album with two brand new songs as well.  This ‘best of’ set will be released on August 26.

Fania Records will launch a new series called Rare Grooves kicking it off with an album from The Latin Blues Band.  They were from the ‘60s and had a Rock/Soul/Latin fusion sound.  Their only album, Take a Trip Pussycat, is a rare disc that finds new life at the first on this series.  It is expected on August 26.

The previously mentioned Rare Grooves series will also re-release Y Su Apollo Sound 2 from late ‘60s Salsa artist, Roberto Roena.  This long-ago released album is slated by Fania for August 26.

The debut album from Hollywood Undead is planned for August 26 by A&M Records/Octone Records.  This band has enjoyed a fantastic showing on their MySpace page with 40 million+ plays and over 410,000 friends.  It might do well to take a click to their page and hear what all the fuss is about.  In any case, watch for their new album called Swan Songs, which will be available in both PA and Edited forms.

Jefferson Starship arrives back on the music scene with the release of their new album, Jefferson’s Tree of Liberty.  The band will have past members like Kantner, Slick, Balin, and others.  The other thing is that the album is filled with covers from Lennon, Marley, Ochs, Seeger, Dylan, Leadbelly, and others, 19 tracks altogether.  The album will be released on Fuel Records with 24-bit mastering and a Deluxe Packaging with extensive liner notes.  This album is planned for September 2Jefferson Starship will be touring this year and next.



Review - Uriah Heep - Wake the Sleeper - CD

Uriah Heep is one of the '70s' memorable bands with a few solid singles to bookmark their existence with. This is their latest work that is a nice bookend piece, thus far. Wake the Sleeper is home to two long-time band-mates (one of them a Mark ! member) with two others "retired." Original vocalist, David Byron, died in 1985 after a history of alcohol abuse, felled by a heart attack at the age of 38. Regardless, Wake the Sleeper is an excellent work that deserves attention.



Review - The Flower Kings - The Sum of No Evil - CD

The Flower Kings understand good progressive work. On their latest album, The Sum of No Evil, they explore influenced prog music from many a recognizable corner. The album is recommended.


Review - Dw Dunphy - Modernism - CD

Dw Dunphy has a thirst for music and a story to tell. Mixed together, Dunphy take solace in shedding his outer skin by way of his music and lyrics. On Modernism, he looks at multiple issues including the poilitics of fear and the face of apathy. Plus, we just love the guy. But we didn't allow that love to colour our honest review of the album. Like musicians that create, they also grow.








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212 Frech

"Even though most of the people I knew in my youth are gone, I still reach out to them..." Norman Maclean - Paraphrase

"...we should enjoy every sandwich." -- Warren Zevon
"Buy the ticket, take the ride." -- Hunter S Thompson
"...you best wake up 'fore tomorrow comes creepin' in...: -- Mark Farner (Grand Funk Railroad)
"We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful what we pretend to be." -- Kurt Vonnegut
"Because they wouldn't let me go for three..." -- Woody Hayes (OSU)
"Show me peaceful days before my youth has gone" -- Neil Diamond (Serenade)