June 25, 2008


We couldn’t begin this edition of TAP without the acknowledgement of the passing of George Carlin, whose incisive commentaries and personal philosophies were delivered in the spirit of good nature and care.  Although many of us, myself included, could bristle with some discomfort at some of the subject matter that Carlin dished out, we all could acknowledge his skill in the smoothing of language and acceptance begun in earnest by Lenny Bruce, who shoved the spade into the ground back many years ago during the young years of Rock.  Although there were no music created by these men, Carlin, as well as Bruce, and Pryor walked through the following decades and years with a scythe, making the paths clear to all who would follow, and who would willingly listen to what was said, and more important to their craft, how it was said.

Carlin was the last of the trio that set that golden standard.  Yes, there were others.  But none as frontline and visceral as the clampdown that Carlin snared our thinking with.  His wit, wisdom, and sharp observational contemplations set the bar high for intelligent comedy.  His style was a rare commodity, as were those of Lenny Bruce and Richard Pryor.  Their talents transcended the times and for those many elements they left behind, we will always remember.

You can rest now, George.

George Carlin
1937 - 2008

Music, music, music.  I listened to so much music this week, I’m not really sure I’m absorbing it.  I enjoyed a discussion with someone concerning today’s music versus music from the past.  As you all already know, my quest to figure out why music is so faceless these days has led me down many paths.  I often wonder why there are no more Led Zeppelins, etc.  You and I, and, in fact, all of us together have gone over these details with various views and ideas.  The person that I chatted with said that music must be a force in that it is remembered after you hear it.  It has to make a home in your head, your heart.  While I don’t disagree with that, I have to throw this in.  In listening to the new Uriah Heep, I’m struck with the fact that the multitude of music fans never even liked Uriah Heep.  Oh sure, the band had their fans.  But not many.  Uriah Heep enjoyed a hit or two, before falling in with a select crowd of fans that jumped from each of their albums until each fell away for one reason or another.

We all know that a hit single works wonders and will earn you fans, more than otherwise.  That hit certainly must be enjoyed.  From that point on, fans want the same experience and have a tendency to follow you, hoping that you’ll do it again, maybe even better than the last.  But how many bands, with relatively small followings ever resonated with people outside their following?  Nazareth had a following and gained more with their hit, “Love Hurts.”  But it’s their other hit-less albums that I like much better.

Other examples are Graham Parker, Lou Reed, Ian Dury, Captain Beefheart, Frank Zappa…the list goes on.  While these may have enjoyed a hit in the Top40, or none at all, they all had a flurry of fans.  What drove them to these bands even if in low numbers?  I’d be curious to hear your theories.

This all ties in with the great question…what happened to today?  Why are there faceless bands that produce a lifeless hit, maybe two, and then never get heard from again.  Where is the pomp?  Even The Rolling Stones are boring today in comparison to their earlier years and their peaks.  And while I’d be bed-wetting excited to see The Faces, will they still have any of that ‘70s “magic” left.  Did The Police?  Would a Peter Gabriel-led Genesis reunion have it.  Does Journey have any of it left?  Would they regain it if Steve Perry reattached himself to them?  Does a Roth-fronted Van Halen add to the thrill of the band still?

So many questions from a music fan who mourns the glory days…or seeming lack of it.  Don’t get me wrong.  Lots of music being produced today to enjoy.  Lots!!  It just seems to dissipate so rapidly.

There are two reviews today. I review the new Journey disc, Revelation. I also go old-school and review a Roy Acuff gospel title called Hand Clapping Gospel Songs, reissued by Varese Vintage.

Continue to send in your Led Zep picks. Remember to address your favourite album and what you thought was their defining moment even if you didn't like it.

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

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The Enemy (UK) - Band From NYC - For Your Approval

We have briefly mentioned this band from out of the UK. We kind of fell in listening to them a little more this weekend and felt that they needed a little bit more coverage. Out of the UK with a ton of sales and a direct to Number 1 album on the UK charts, we felt it only fair to alert you to them - if you aren't already a fan. They have plenty of appeal for the young and the old crowd. If you have iTunes, the album is already available as a DD. Dig in!! As an aside, the upcoming US release of this UK hit will have two exclusive tracks, "Five Years," and "Fear Killed the Youth of Our Nation."



Southern Records will release a CD title by Asva called What You Don’t Know is Frontier, which has a street date of August 12.

Geffen Records will release an LP, Colby O, from R&B artist, Colby O’Donis, planning the album for distribution on July 29.

Kingdom Records have planned to release My Prayer from Christian Music artist, Darian Keith Horn on August 19Executive Music will release a Christian title on August 19 from The Wrecking called A New Abolition.

Open E Records will make Saudades De Rock available from Extreme on August 12.

Varese Sarabande has Cowboy Hymns & Songs of Inspiration arriving from famed singer and movie star, Gene Autry, slated for August 19.  Also from Varsese, Western Hymns and Spirituals by Sons of the Pioneers, planned for the same release date.

Interscope Records will release PA and Edited versions of the new Greg Street album called Greg Street Certified on August 12.  The album will also arrive as a 12” LP.

Tompkins Square Records will release an LP for Harry Taussig called Fate is Only Once.  It is being pegged for an August 12 release date.  The same date is also planned for an LP by Folk artist, Richard Crandell called In the Flower of Our Youth.

Telarc has a Jazz title arriving from John Pizzarelli called With a Song in my Heart.  It is being readied for release on August 19.

For The Revolution is the new Metal title from Kalmah, planned for release by Fontana International Records on August 19.

Brian "Head" Welch (Korn) will release a solo album on September 9. The album will be self-released on Driven Music Records and will be called Save Me From Myself. It will feature plenty of exciting guest musicians that include Tony Levin and Josh Freese.


Glen Campbell - Meet Glen Campbell - CD, LP

Glen Campbell comes back to Capitol Records with a title that we have covered in past posts.  The new album, Meet Glen Campbell, is a 10-track covers album with Glen Campbell putting his touch on songs like “Jesus” (Velvet Underground); “All I Want is You” (U2); “Sadly Beautiful” (The Replacements); “Grow Old With Me” (John Lennon); “Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)” (Green Day); “Sing” (Travis); “Walls,” “Angel Dream” (Tom Petty/Heartbreakers); “Times Like These” (Foo Fighters); and “These Days” (Jackson Browne).  The LP release adds several goodies to the package and is released two weeks earlier than the CD and DD.  Being released on August 5, the LP version adds a bonus track, “Galveston,” which is likely a re-record of his early career hit.  Also, the LP will include a DD card (with instructions) that allow for the download of the music found on the LP.  The LP is a Limited Edition and so will not only be limited in volume, but is likely to become a collector’s item.

Review - Journey - Revelation - 2CD/DVD

Journey is a band that has a great history attached to them. Beginning as a progressive rock band, fresh from Santana along with Gregg Rolie, Neal Schon, the guitar-wizard eventually brought on Steve Perry, who then combined to produce hit after hit...after hit. Eventually, the band splintered due to many reasons. After going through several singers that included Augeri and Soto, they discover latest singer, Arnel Pineda via YouTube and the rest is now Journey history. With the release of their latest album, Revelation, coupled with a DVD and an ill-advised disc of re-records, the band is back with surprising results.



Review - Roy Acuff - Hand Clapping Gospel Songs - CD

Good old Gospel music, especially when it's from Hall of Famer, Roy Acuff, is something special. Gospel has played a strong role in the development of many genres of music and so it is not surprising that an interest still exists. Elvis Presley covered a lot of gospel ground with several albums of the stuff. On Hand Clapping Gospel Music, we hear one of the great Country legends as he sings his brand of inspirational music.

BBC Radio - Enjoy Radio from BBC in England

This collection of BBC radios is a fantastic bit of radio that covers multiple styles on their different channels. I stumbled on a site that listed the link and I thought that I'd give it a shot. I was surprised with the DJs, and the obvious love for different styles. You can select what pleased you most. Listening to several shows, I was struck with the 'better than USA' radio that goes on there. I'm including the link to their front page. If you so desire, check them out.






Copyright 2002-2008 Matthew Rowe.
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Disclaimer: various news pieces may state a specific media publication or program as a source. All other news is considered 'rumour' only. That goes double for release dates.

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)