Music Reviews

I just listened to Secret Machines' album "Awake in the Brain Chamber" for the first time. They call themselves Space Rock but in my brain it's the same as Psychedelic Rock and I've loved these guys since 2000 with their minor hit "Nowhere Again" till their break up in 2010. Ten years later they get back together and pick up right where they left off. As Gandalf said to Bilbo, "you haven't aged a day." Their sound is still there and it's great! They have a a hard rock sound with great drumming but it slow burns and goes cosmic. Best example is "3, 4, 5, Let's Stay Alive". Like Pink Floyd you can drift off to their album. I'm so happy they are back together and when the pandemic is over I hope they tour again. I will be first in line for tickets. Thanks to Me for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Beatles album "Rubber Soul" for the first time. This is the record that marks the beginning of their psychedelic-experimental era. Their mop tops on the cover are growing out and getting messy. They start using a sitar in "Norwegian Wood". They still have a few songs clinging onto the british invasion sound like "Drive My Car" but they are breaking away and evolving. The best thing about The Beatles is when the change they get better and previous eras are not diminished. Damn, what a great band! Thanks to Gerard Brazill for the suggestion.

I just listened to Pink Floyd's album "The Endless River" for the first time. The very last of Pink Floyd's records and the final one I haven't heard. It's largely an instrumental album as only two songs have any singing (not counting Stephen Hawking on "Talkin' Hawkin'") which is totally fine, I love zoning out to Floyd records. All the tracks effortlessly blended into one another. "It's What We Do" had some great Gilmore guitar work. Saxophone overload on "Anisina", however. It sounded like Kenny G taking a shit in an elevator. Luckily, Gilmore jumps in last minute with a solo and rescues it. "Skins" has some mind blowing drumming, it had me spinning on space mushroom beer. In "Louder Than Words" Gilmore sings the word  "dis". I actually had to look up the lyrics to prove I wasn't hearing it wrong. I couldn't help but laugh.  "Calling" had some wicked cool experimental things. Minus one song, I loved this album. I gave it four listens already. They still have their one of a kind Floyd sound and that alone makes it a great album. Thanks to my Alien Travel Companions for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Beatles' album "Help" for the first time. Lost of songs I never heard again. Lennon sounded like he's trying to sing like Bob Dylan on "You've Got to Hide Your Love Away". I can hear a maturing of their sound. They are not stuck in the british invasion niche. Why'd they give the country song "Act Naturally" lead vocals to Ringo? What's up with that? Thanks to Gerard Brazill for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Rolling Stones' album "Beggars Banquet" for the first time. Damn, "Sympathy For The Devil" is a great song. This is definitely blues. So blues I might call it southern rock. It retains The Stones sound of course, but it's like they are doing their best impression southern rock but they get in their own way and make something original. It's pretty cool. Thanks to Brian Butler for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Human League's album "Dare" for the first time. OMG this is the MOST 80's album I've ever heard. Everything is synthesized: clapping, drums, piano, base. This is the epitome of 80's synth-pop. It's joyous nostalgic giddiness. It's great to hear more than just "Don't You Want Me". "Open Your Heart" was my favorite, but they are ALL explorations in crazy synth sounds and beats. Xenu help me, I loved this! Throw an 80's party and slap this on the turntable! Thanks to Michael Treblig for the suggestion.

I just listened to Alice Cooper's album "Billion Dollar Babies" for the first time. The only thing I know about Alice Cooper is from his appearance on the The Muppet Show. Honestly, I expected pure metal but it wasn't. It was great rock and roll. He's got cowbells, a piano and acoustic guitars mixed in. "Raped and Freezin'" was fun and upbeat, ironically. "Unfinished Sweet" was my favorite. I dug his vocals too. He's got a cool sarcastic sneer to it. I look forward to more of his albums. Thanks to Sue Bielenberg for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Beatles' album "Beatles for Sale" for the first time. Their covers of "Rock and Roll Music", "Everybody's Trying to Be My Baby", and "Kansas City" was awesome! More blues than they normally go. I liked it! "Eight Days a Week" was the only original beatles songs I'd heard before. All the rest was  another crock of gold to discover from them. Damn, what a great band! Thanks to Gerard Brazill for the suggestion.

I just listened to Robin Trower's album "Bridge of Sighs" for the first time. Classic rock in the blues influenced hard rock 70's era. The title track "Bridge of Sighs" is the killer one on this album. A cool, slow song with cryptic, mystical lyrics.  They warp guitar chords in traditional psychedelic fashion. A CCR and Steppenwolf sound. It's half rocking and half chill. I dug it. On a sad note, this was the last music suggestion from Ritchie M. Angeles before his death a couple days ago. Thank you, Ritchie, for the laughs, and sharing your musical taste and insights with me.

I just listened to Pink Floyd's album "The Division Bell" for the first time. I get the feeling most of this record is about Roger Waters. The division in the bell is their split up. "Poles Apart" says, "Did you know it was all going to go so wrong for you". Perhaps a reference to the court battle that Waters lost. "Lost for Words" Sounds like he tried to make peace with Waters and he told him to go fuck himself. There's more to it than bandmate drama. Is Gillmore complaining about being a rock star on "What Do You Want From Me"? A killer song is "Take It Back", but I swear the beginning sounded like U2's "Bad". "Keep Talking" was also killer. They reference their past albums a lot: the buzzing bee from Ummagumma, the baby crying in the Wall, someone walking to a door from Meddle, and wind and birds, of course, from nearly every album. Still it's a great album and the more times I listened to it the more drunk on space mushroom beer I got. Thanks to my Alien Travel Companions for the suggestion.

(What I posted to Facebook right before listening)
My alien travel companions insist on taking me deep into the center of the galaxy to see the mystical Sacred Heads. As we arrive I see two towering statues, in an optical illusion, form a single face. We open a barrel of space mushroom beer and fill our cups. After we pour the heads an offering they begin to sing a Pink Floyd album I've never heard. Suddenly, the sun eclipses in the sky and a meteor shower begins. 

I just listened to Jimi Hendrix's album "Axis: Bold as Love" for the first time. Any album that opens up with aliens is a friend of mine. "Wait Till to Tomorrow" was funny. Great bass guitar in "If Six Was Nine". "Some Castles Made of Sand" was so sad. Another great Hendrix album. It's safe to say his whole catalogue goes in my vinyl collection. Thanks to Michael Treblig for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Rolling Stones' album "Let It Bleed" for the first time. I've heard most of these songs before but they were different than what I remember. Is this the southern rock jugband versions? "You Can't Always Get What You Want" is the only song that sounds like they play on the radio. Am I going crazy? Am I missing something? It was cool to hear these different takes. Is it late and my mind is twitchy? Thanks to Michael Treblig for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Beatles's album "A Hard Day's Night" for the first time. So many songs I've never hard: "If I Fell", "I Happy Just To Dance With You", "Tell Me Why", "Anytime At All", "I'll Cry Instead", "Things We Said Today", When I Get Home", "I'll Be Back" . It's an absolute delight to discovery all these. Anyone of these B-sides done by anyone else at that time would have been their number 1 hit. Damn, what a great band! Thanks to Gerard Brazill for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Beatles' album "With the Beatles" for the first time. With every album I'm constantly amazed how many Beatles songs I already know. For a band to have so many hits on every album is amazeballs. The ones I never heard were "All I've Got To Do", "Till There Was You", "Not a Second Time" and my favorite "Devil In Her Heart". All the others I sang along to the choruses and had a swinging time! I'm gonna let my hair grow out to a mop-top. Damn, what a great band! Thanks to Gerard Brazill for the suggestion.

I just listened to Arctic Monkeys' album "Tranquility Base Hotel and Casino" for the first time. I had no idea how trippy this band was. Every track was a cosmic lounge song. It's got jazzy piano, beatles guitar sounds and hallucinatory vocals. This whole thing seems like a concept album like an ad for a futuristic hotel in space. I'm not sure what's going on but it's weird, different and cool. It's hard to pick a favorite as each song is a gear in a big ticking clock tower. With every passing song the more sucked into it I became. It's hard to explain this one, it needs to be heard. Is this band always like this or just for this album? Thanks to Elizabeth Croydon for the suggestion.

I just listened to Van Halen's album "Fair Warning" for the first time. This is as hard rocking as "Women and Children First". "Unchained" is the only song I've heard before. Something evil happened on "Sunday Afternoon in the Park", like a growling animal. My favorite was "Push Comes to Shove".  Another great rocking album! Thanks to Kenny Harder for the suggestion.

I just listened to Montrose's album "Montrose" for the first time. Turns out Sammy Hagar was co-lead singer of this group. Kinda cool. This is a hard rockin' record with a blues influence. Lots of songs about women and love and sex. A true killer of a song was "Hard Candy". Just a great riff and pure rock and roll innuendo. Not sure about the album cover - bunch of hairy chested dudes with their shirts off. Thanks to KLOS 95.5FM for the suggestion.

I just listened to Rainbows' album "Rising" for the first time. Pleasant surprise to hear Ronnie James Dio as lead singer. I only knew him from his solo career and his time with Black Sabbath. This record is like prog rock heavy metal. Dio's vocals really take these songs to a higher plain. "Stargazer" is nothing short of epic. As prog rock goes this band would be the bully shoving Rush in a locker. Thanks to Dan Peter Peterson for the suggestion.

I just listened to Jeff Buckley's album "Grace" for the first time. He sings at a soft falsetto for almost every song. He even sings at such a high pitch on "Corpus Christi Carol" I thought it was a woman or a prepubescent choir boy. His version of "Hallelujah" is fantastic. With the exception of "Eternal Life" the rest of the record is a collection of painful emotional anguish about a broken heart and loneliness. I get the feeling it was written in the depths of despair after a horrendous break up. I would have liked to have heard his second album, in hopes it would be a bit more upbeat, but, alas, he is no longer with us from an accidental drowning. RIP Jeff. Your music lives on. Thanks to Stacey Jones for the suggestion.

I just listened to My Bloody Valentine's album "Loveless" for the first time. This is dreamy punkish guitar distortion music. It's mostly instrumental. For these melodies most bands would use violins or an acoustic guitar, this band chose the power chords of an electric guitar. Surprisingly, they pulled it off.  Each track is hard rock but makes you sway and chill. It's a strange spell it puts on you. I wanted to call them alternative rock but it didn't fit to me so I looked them up and turns out they pioneered their own genre called "Shoegaze". This is precisely why I took this journey, to learn cool new music just like this. Thanks to Mark White for the suggestion.

I just listened to The 13th Floor Elevators' album "The Psychedelic sounds of the 13th Floor Elevators" for the first time. This is FUN psychedelic rock. It has a mixture of surfer rock and experimental sounds. It doesn't get over saturated with the experimenting side. It's really cool. They even have an electric jug. For their period they might have been really out there and ahead of their time but for now its cool sonic sounds with swinging hit singles. You can dance to this record and enjoy it on shrooms. Loved it. Thanks to Dylan at Nobel Records for the suggestion.

I just listened to Jimi Hendrix's album "Are You Experienced" for the first time. Jimi's guitar solos are all I live for when I put on one of his records. Mitch Mitchell's drumming is exceptional as well. With headphones on I noticed for the first time the lady background singers on "Hey Joe". This is my favorite kind of psychedelic rock. "May This Be Love" was the deep cut discovery for me. I put that in my favorites playlist. Thanks to Michael Treblig for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Doors' album "The Soft Parade" for the first time. This is the first time they added a brass section to about half the songs. Perhaps that's the parade theme? Even with that its still got that dark Morrison edge to it. "Easy Ride" actually got a little Grateful Deadish. "Runnin' Blue" was a little bluegrass. Watch out for "Wild Child" an ancient lunatic reigns in the trees at night. The record is a little different, more upbeat and circus-like but they still whip the horses eyes. Thanks to Brian Butler for the suggestion.

I just listened to Jeff Beck's album "Truth" for the first time. I was surprised to hear Rod Stewart singing. It had some great blues rock. He did a lot of covers like "Old Man River",  "Morning Dew", and Muddy Water's "You Shook Me". I didn't know much about Jeff Beck, turns out he put together an all star band with Ronnie Wood, John Paul Jones, and Jimmy Page. Pretty cool. The cast of players alone makes this a classic album worth hearing. Thanks to Sal Espana for the suggestion.

I just listened to Pink Floyd's album "A Momentary Lapse of Reason" for the first time. The only song I've heard before was "Learning to Fly" which I've always loved and still do. "On The Turning Away" was the killer track on the whole record. Gilmore's singing is exceptional and his guitar solo was so metal. I believe it to be a protest song on how badly we treat the homeless. "Dogs of War" was delightfully dark. I thought I heard satan speak again. "A New Machine Parts 1 and 2" and "Sorrow" had me tripping on space mushroom beer. There's more saxophone this album and it's a little bit 80's. Even without Roger Waters they still sustained their one of kind sound and as a bonus we get even more of Gilmore's marvelous guitar work. Thanks to my Alien Travel Companions for the suggestion.

(What I posted on Facebook before review)
On a distant planet, I stand in a forest of twenty foot tall magic mushrooms. An alien horticulturalist has set up a record player and giant speakers. He puts on a Pink Floyd album I've never heard. The mushrooms start to slowly sway rhythmically in unison to the music. He then taps a spile into one of the stems, fills a glass with space mushroom beer, and hands it to me. I gladly drink down it's icy frothiness. My reasoning lapses for a moment as I drift away.

I just listened to The Rolling Stones' album "Goat Head Soup" for the first time. Right from the opening riff of "Dancing with Mr. D" I knew I'd love this. It's in the "Exile" era of The Stones sound. It's raw and rocking. Every song delivered for me. "Angie" was the only one I'd heard before. "Star Star" was a surprisingly filthy one. "Winter" and "Can You Hear the Music" were the real killers. So far this is my favorite Stones album. It goes in the vinyl collection. Thanks to Chris Schilling for the suggestion.

I just listened to Meat Loaf's album "Bat Out of Hell" for the first time. Every song on this record is big broadway number. Meat Loaf sings them big and booming. Even the ballads are mountain sized. The whole thing felt like a musical at the Pantages Theater. It's funny too. That weird poetry about a wolf and a rose.
"Paradise by the Dashboard Light" duet was hilarious. Again, it's the kind of back and forth you get opera singers doing. For me "Two Out of Three Ain't Bad" was the best one, a piano ballad about a broken heart that can't love another. This album really moves. The sheer size of the sound keeps you locked in to the end. Thanks to Jeff Leon and Andy Lockamay for the suggestion.

I just listened to Steppenwolf's album "The Second" for the first time. This is great blues rock and roll. "Don't Step on the Grass" has a great riff and dips a toe into trippy. It totally kicked ass. "Magic Carpet Ride" is the hit on the record everyone will recognize. This band knows how to rock! I dig it! Thanks to Michael Treblig for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Grateful Dead's album "Europe '72" for the first time. Okay, I finally get it. Whenever people tell me a group "is really a live band" it comes off as an excuse for studio albums being lackluster. This is a live album and you know what? They ARE better live. You can feel the improvisational energy. You definitely hear the extra creativity from each member. I heard "Tennessee Jed" on the radio and said okay let's do that live album and I'm so glad I did. Its great! The whole album is dreamy. "He's Gone" and "China Cat Sunflower" were my favorites, but "Morning Dew" steals the whole album. This is the perfect album to put on when having a bonfire and some good indica. Thanks to Craig Coleman for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Little Feat's album "Dixie Chicken" for the first time. It's southern rock with big harmonizing. It's got a spark of funk too. They kinda sound like a more soulful Grateful Dead. "Two Trains" had some great drumming. A pretty twanging ballad with "Roll Um Easy". They got a little Pink Floyd-ish with "Kiss It Off". Very kick ass. Country music is not my cup of tea and most southern rock leans more country than rock, but this band walks the razor's edge of country and  blues to perfect balance. I really dug it. Thanks to Bob Claster for the suggestion.

I just listened to Pink Floyd's album "Final Cut" for the first time. My first impression is this is a war protest record. Waters is angry that his father was killed needlessly for a bridge. He makes a powerful statement in "When the Tigers Broke Free" as he recalls finding the governments letter to his family informing them his father was KIA with the acidic line "his majesty signed it with his own rubber stamp." Waters' disdain for the politician's fake reverence for fallen soldiers is loud and clear - and still relevant. "The Gunner's Dream" I'm guessing is his father's funeral. They won the war and "no one kills children anymore". The album is saying a lot about the futility of war, how we treat soldiers when they are used up and spit out limbless and broken. He's also speaking from a child's point of view and how the family left behind is missing and arm or two as well. It drags 80's politics into it with mentions of Reagan and Thatcher. Even with the hard topic of war it's still delivered with the space mushroom beer that is Pink Floyd. Every song is so beautiful. I loved the echoes of the word 'closer' in "Your Possible Pasts".  "Final Cut" had an electronic tweek to Waters' voice that was very tasty. They still have a thing for radios, clocks and barking dogs. I thoroughly loved this album and I will listen to it over and over and over... Thanks to my faithful Alien Travellers for the suggestion. 

(What I posted on Facebook before I listened)
Outside the spaceship's window is a supermassive purple nebula, next stop the Lunar Bar. My alien companions slip a Pink Floyd album I've never heard into the console. A weightless bubble of space mushroom beer floats in front of me. I poke it with a straw and slurp it down. They make a slice around two suns and enter a wormhole. Millions of stars dissolve in our wake as the music starts to play.

I just listened to The Pogues' album "If I Should Fall from Grace with God" for the first time. It's Irish folk music turned punk! Who knew these two went together like corn beef and cabbage? This totally swings! The singer has an angry, aggressive delivery which I like. Banjos, flutes and rock. They got a little James Bondish with "Metropolis". My favorite was "Lullaby of London". This is perfect album to put on for St. Patty's Day! Thanks to Craig Coleman for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Van Halen's album "Women and Children First" for the first time. This is the hardest rocking Van Halen record I've ever heard. It's on the level of AC/DC. This might be their "Powerage". Not their most famous album but the rockin-ist one. Michael Anthony's bass in "Fools" is killer while Roth does his Janis Joplin impression. Definitely a Black Sabbath influence with "Tora! Tora!". So many great rifffs and Eddie showcases his talent every one. Good acoustic guitar lickin' on "Could This Be Magic?". "In a Simple Rhyme" was my favorite, some nice mellow change ups in there. So far, this is Van Halen's best. Thanks to Kenny Harder and David Gilbert for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Doors' album "Waiting for the Sun" for the first time. I love this album! Jim Morrison had a really deep hypnotic swagger to his voice. This is the one he declares himself the Lizard King. "Hello, I Love You" is great. "My Wild Love" is this their attempt to sound Native American? Robby Krieger gives a great solo on "Yes, The River Knows". "Five to One" is absolutely KILLER! I loved this one! "Not to Touch the Earth" was deliciously psychedelic. Album snobs pejoratively declare The Doors mainstream psychedelic. Maybe so, but damn it's goooood. I'll put this up against King Crimson any day of the week. Thanks to Brian Butler for the suggestion. 

I just listened to INXS' album "Kick" for the first time. If you love the 80's this is an essential record to have in the collection. It brandishes the big hits "New Sensation", "Devil Inside", "Mediate", "Mystify", "Kick", "Never Tear Us Apart", and "Need You Tonight". They just keep coming. One after another. The deep cuts don't hold up too well but so what? That's amazing to have that many hits on one album. Big thumbs up. Thanks to Michael Treblig for the suggestion.

I just listened to George Michael's album "Faith" for the first time. This has a lot more funk than I remember. It's frozen in the late 80's but I still dug it. "Faith" and "Father Figure" still hold up. The sampled monkey shrieking on "Monkey" made me laugh out loud. "Kissing a Fool" was actually a really cool jazzy number. My unheard favorite. He couldn't have ended the album any better. I admit I guffawed at this suggestion but I found myself continuously turning it up. Thanks to Kathy Copeland Padden Jr. for the suggestion.

I just listened to Pink Floyd's album "Atom Heart Mother" for the first time. I believe this is the pivotal record that begins that unequaled Pink Floyd sound for the coming decades. "Atom Heart Mother" is an instrumental first side that has 6 parts and many trippy change ups. The best part was an acoustic guitar and electric overlapping each other with Gilmore's string bending doing his brilliant bewitching thing. "If" was a cool acoustic one and the the first with lyrics. "Summer '68" really kicks in some rock and a Beach Boys "Pet Sounds" influence. "Fat Old Sun" was my favorite, just an amazing guitar solo in it. "Alan's Psychedelic Breakfast" was an interesting themed one with sound effects of someone eating breakfast. It's another instrumental in 2 parts. Pink Floyd have completely found themselves this album. Just let the space mushroom beer work it's magic. Hold onto Voyager 1 and let it pull you deep into the cosmos. Thanks to my Alien Intergalactic Travel Companions for the suggestion.

(What I posted on Facebook before I listened)
I sit at a squalid table in the Lunar Bar encircled by aliens from across the galaxy. On the table are ray guns, gemstone rings, and other valuables at play. They wait for me as it's my turn. Across the smoky room I see a reptilian creature go to the jukebox and select a Pink Floyd album I've never heard. As the record flops onto the turntable I glimpse a picture of a cow. I raise my glass of space mushroom beer in a toast to my fellow players. I take a deep swig, the needle drops, and I toss the dice...

I just listened to Tom Waits' album "The Black Rider" for the first time. This is Waits in all his glorious weirdness. He has an enormous cult following and his music is more than a style it's a genre to its own. His writing is surrealistic and his chain smoking gravelly voice is always in perfect key.  There's a circus theme to this album and he opens it with himself playing the barker announcing to the marks as they shuffle in to see the dog faced boy and Hitler's brain. He even got William S. Burroughs to sing on "Tain't No Sin" - and it fits perfectly without disrupting a thing. I love Tom Waits but I know he's an acquired taste, to put it mildly, and this album is one of his best. Also, if you haven't seen him in the Buster Scruggs movie, you need to check that out. Thanks to Keon Kobra for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Zombies' album "Odessey and Oracle" for the first time. This is deep hippie psychedelic rock. Not dark like Pink Floyd but flowery. There's a strong influence of the British invasion. Bongos and flutes. A little experimental. A lot of harmonizing the bulk of the lyrics, not just the choruses. It's all very upbeat. There are many songs about love and wanted relationships. I didn't hear any protest politics or drug references. So this is somewhere between The Kinks and The Moody Blues. Anyone of these songs is perfect background music for a time travel movie to the swinging counterculture of the late 60's. Thanks to Sue Bielenberg for the suggestion.

I just listened to Al Green's album "Let's Stay Together" for the first time. A soul record. An electric guitar, a brass section, and a voice cool as ice. This whole album makes me close my eyes and sway to it's sweetness. "Old time Lovin'" is just so good. "How Can You Mend A Broken Heart" made me want to weep it spoke to me that much. Getting your heart ripped out is the worst. How can you stop the rain? How can you stop this album being awesome? You can't. Thanks to Rob Kolar for the suggestion.

I just listened to the New York Dolls' debut album "New York Dolls" for the first time. This is early punk. It even has a 50's bebop swing to it. Very different. When punk was finding itself. Who invented punk? NYC or London? The debate continues. "Lonely Planet Boy" was my favorite. A love song with a sax and a ukulele. I like punk that has their own STYLE. They had that musically and certainly fashion wise. Thanks to Janet Lee Brown and Dan Madonia for the suggestion.

I just listened to Wu-Tang Clan's album "Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)" for the first time. This album ain't nothing to eff with! Whoever their DJ/mixer was they are a genius. It's a collage of sampled beats, movie quotes and sound effects and its great! Multiple rappers kickin' it. I won't be listening to this with my kids, a lot of eff and n-word bombs. Every song had my head bobbing. Old Dirty Bastard steals the show tho. His voice and style are very distinctive. I'll give them my money for their beats - dolla dolla bill yo! Thanks to Scott Forbes for the suggestion.

I just listened to Aerosmith's album "Toys in the Attic" for the first time. Where has THIS Aerosmith been for 40 years? This rocks! Such a difference from "Cryin'". They actually sounded like Cheap Trick's first album. They even channeled Led Zeppelin in "Round and Round". What could "Big Ten Inch Record" be about? Hmm. This was hard rock, bluesy, and fun. I'm all for bands evolving and Aerosmith has found a way to survive and still sell out stadiums for a long time, but they definitely rocked harder in the 70's. Thanks to David Rath for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Replacements' album "Let It Be" for the first time. This is a very, very cool album. They are sometimes punk and sometimes not. The masterpiece on this is "Androgynous". It is a GREAT song. Paul Westerberg sings it with such heartbreaking emotion he's almost crying. It's a beautiful song and a beautiful message about gender nonconformity. "Sixteen Blue" is another pretty song about a teenager struggling with their sexuality. It's like they're giving a hug to those in pain. I guarantee these songs helped a lot of kids through terrible times. This was 1984 when this album came out. They were WAY ahead of the curve. Big respect to this band for that. They also have a sense of humor with "Tommy Gets His Tonsils Out". I'm afraid to ask what "Gary's Got a Boner" is about cuz the title seems obvious, yet the lyrics are confusing. Huge thumbs up for this album. Thanks to Mark White for the suggestion.

I just listened to Motorhead's album "The Ace of Spades" for the first time. This is punch you in the teeth heavy metal. You won't get a silly love song out of this band. Oh, hell no. This is aggressive, loose woman, hard drinking, methamphetamine fueled rock and roll! You don't like it? They don't fucking care. Lemmy's voice sounds like he gargles with broken glass. "Ace of Spades" is just the 1st killer song and it keeps boxing your ears till the album's end. This is Motorhead and they will clean your clock! Thanks to Earl Skakel for the suggestion.

I just listened to Butthole Surfers' album "Psychic... Powerless... Another Man's Sac" for the first time. If you were 13 and your parents banished you to your room, you'd stomp down the hall, slam the door, put on this record and crank it to 11 - just to piss them off. This is so weird and off the wall how can you not like it? Gibby Haynes has what seems 3 different characters he sings as: one being a wicked witch of the west impression like in "Concubine", one kinda talking, and the other a noise making machine like in "Woly Boly". This album is chaos. "Lady Sniff" made me laugh hysterically. "Gary Floyd" was probably the closest they come to a mainstream song. If you like strange, off the beaten path rock that will annoy all your friends that don't "get it", this is it. Thanks to Dinah Leffert for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Grateful Dead's album "American Beauty" for the first time. I think I get their vibe. They are a group of guys with electric guitars sitting around a campfire playing songs while everyone dances and roasts marshmallows. I understand now why many compare Phish to this band. They don't fit my definition of psychedelic rock, they sound more jam band and soft rock. Although "Candyman" was kinda trippy. Cocaine seems to be a running theme. Jerry Garcia is not a singing virtuoso. He struggles to hit the high notes. They are at their best when the whole band harmonizes together like in "Attics of My Life". "Truckin" was the radio hit I recognized. "Friend of the Devil" was my favorite. They are definitely poets. Their songs are open to mystical interpretations. Combine that with cool vibes and an audience given to using psychedelics you got yourself a cult following. Thanks to Steve Forbes, Craig Coleman, and Gerard Brazill for the suggestion.

I just listened to the Bee Gees' album "Main Course" for the first time. This is disco, baby. It's got that wacka wacka guitar strum with electronic dance beats and synths. I gotta admit I liked it. It's got some funk and sweet change ups. My punker instincts told me to ridicule it but I involuntarily kept dancing and joyfully howling along with that high pitch key Barry Gibb delivers. "Jive Talkin'" was classic fun. They unexpectedly get pretty deep like "Songbird" and in "Winds of Change" saying, "You can lose your hope and pride. When it comes to broken dreams. You'll get your share." They also got kinda country with "Come on Over". These guys aren't just disco hit making machines they are really talented musicians. This album was a get down boogie good time! Thanks to Jason Reese for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Oingo Boingo's album "Only a Lad" for the first time. Now this is pure new wave. I like how aggressively the singer sells it. This record really bounces. I dig it. "Little Girls" was awesome. "Capitalism" was an interesting political stance. Their cover of "You Really Got Me" was electronic new wave funk. I kept thinking it sounded like the music in Nightmare Before Christmas. This album was a lot of fun. Thanks to Jeff Capri for the suggestion.

I just listened to Joy Division's album "Closer" for the first time. This is a really cool album. It's dark emo rock and kinda punk. I love the way Ian Curtis sings. Every song sucks you in to this deep world they create. It somehow taps into that teenage angst we all still hold onto. I have to sit down with the lyrics sheet and give the album another listen. I'm sure this gave birth to The Cure and trip hop type bands. I will put this in the vinyl collection. I wish they didn't have such a tragic ending - this was such a great band. Thanks to Michael Treblig for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Clash's album "London Calling" for the first time. I love classic punk! My roommate after college had their greatest hits cd and I listened to that constantly. I thought it's time to hear their whole records. They aren't stereotypical punk: screaming, speed drumming and guitar distortion. They blend punk in with rockabilly and reggae. They have great melodies and political messages. I dig the way Joe Strummer kind sings out of the side of his mouth. My favorites were "Jimmy Jazz" and "The Card Cheat", but it's a double album of one great song after another. This goes in the vinyl collection for sure. Thanks to Rob Kolar for the suggestion.

I just listened to Frank Zappa's album "Apostrophe" for the first time. This is my first time hearing anything Frank Zappa at all. Where to begin? He's telling surrealistic stories about eskimos, leprechauns and anything else under the sun. It's hard to wrap your mind around it at first, but he knows what he's doing musically and lyrically. He's extremely intelligent and, best of all, funny. It reminded me of the songs I used to listen to on the Dr. Demento Show. I really liked it! It's cool and kooky. It's got funk and soul and some great guitar solos. If these songs are a glimpse of what goes on in his head I can't imagine getting high with him. That would be a trip. Thanks to Mike Strong for the suggestion.

I just listened to Pink Floyd's album "Ummagumma" for the first time. A double album with the 1st being longer, live performances of past songs. Pretty cool. The 2nd half starts the new stuff. "Sysyphus" is a nice piano solo to begin then descends into madness. They start punching the keys then strange sounds enter like a cat, maybe a witch screaming, definitely a monkey, it calms down then back again into madness - like a bipolar psychopath off his meds. "Grantchester Meadows" was a soft acoustic lullaby with a river and bird samples. The song is over when the buzzing bee is smacked with a newspaper. "Several Species of Small Furry Animals" is literally what the title says. I'm glad I didn't listen to this on speakers and freak out my dog. It ends with a repeating message of "Come back at me"?  What the eff? To polish off the number is a Scotsman pontificating about what I have no clue. It was all like a David Lynch movie. "The Narrow Way" took several mind blowing turns as well, from pleasant to uncomfortable. "The Grand Vizier's Garden Party" was flute number I guess with an explosion of every noise including the kitchen sink. This was by far their most experimental album I've heard yet. The space mushroom beer bubbles to the surface occasionally. There's beautiful moments in it throughout but they wanted to do something different. Different they did. Thanks to Jamie Regan for the suggestion.

(What I posted on Facebook before I listened)
I've got that urge again... for a drink only available in a Lunar Bar orbiting a small planet off the shoulder of Orion. First I will go to the jukebox and select a Pink Floyd album I've never heard. Then Immagunna savor that tall glass of space mushroom beer. Who knows where it will take me.

I just listened to Duran Duran's album "Rio" for the first time. Listening with headphones on the star of this record is John Taylor the bass guitarist. He's simply incredible on every song. My favorites were "Lonely in your Nightmare", "The Chauffeur", and "Save a Prayer". It's a very 80's album with all the synth. At times I thought I was watching an episode of Miami Vice. "Rio" and "Hungry like the Wolf" are the hits but man that bass guitar is something else. Thanks to Jana Wimer for the suggestion.

I just listened to Van Halen's album "Van Halen II" for the first time. Every song all I wanted was to hear Eddie's riffs and solos, and of course he delivers! This album rocks it! They even give another "Eruption" type solo with "Spanish Fly"only this time it's on an acoustic guitar and you know what? I'm still in awe. "Women in Love" guitar opening was really cool. Not as many recognizable hits as the first album but who cares I'm in it for Eddie's genius. Thanks to Kenny Harder for the suggestion.

I just listened to A Tribe Called Quest's album "People's Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythm" for the first time. Can this album kick it? Yes, it can. This is cool, chill hip hop. Really smooth beats and good rapping. It's the flip side to Public Enemy that's hard core with a political message. This is dance and study music. I bobbed my head the whole time I was sketching to this. I feel bad for Q-Tip tho, he left his wallet in El Segundo. That sucks, man. I feel ya. Thanks to Miguel Fierro for the suggestion.

I just listened to Cat Stevens' album "Tea for Tillerman" for the first time. I really dig this man's voice, it's very soothing. This whole record is soothing. It's of the ilk of soft rock folk music. It gets pretty hoppin' in some parts tho. It puts you in a certain toe tapping mood. I picture myself blaring this record while I'm on the porch firing up a J. This music is soooo non threatening. How is this guy so dangerous to ban him from the country? I just shake my head and think, Baby, baby it's a wild world. Thanks to Ritchie M. Angeles for the suggestion.

I just listened to Cheap Trick's album "Heaven Tonight" for the first time. If you're ever feeling down just put on a Cheap Trick album, instant happiness. The mighty Cheap Trick's 3rd album with the hit "Surrender". This album has a slight 50's bee bop flavour to it. They added a piano to a few songs. I don't know what effect Rick Nielsen put on his guitar for "On Top of the World" but it was damn cool. "Heaven Tonight" needs to go on a horror movie soundtrack, its crazy. I'm starting to see why they were so popular in Japan. they mention Kamikazes and "Oh, Claire" is just saying konnichiwa. That and this band totally rocks! Thanks to 10 year old me for the suggestion.

I just listened to Canned Heat's debut album "Canned Heat" for the first time. A heavy blues rocking band. The production value seems a bit lacking, it's muffled some songs and seems in the distance others, but those great blues licks still come through. This whole album has some of the best harmonica playing ever. Some of the best covers of Muddy Waters, Willie Dixon, and Guitar Slim.  I'm definitely gonna check out more of their catalogue. Thanks to Leif Cedar for the suggestion.

I just listened to Counting Crows' album "August and Everything After" for the first time. When I was in college in the 90's "Mr. Jones" was in heavy rotation on MTV and I assumed they were alternative rock. Having heard the whole album they are actually more pop country. They even throw in a banjo now and again. 80 percent of it is very slow. There's a large amount of melancholy numbers. He sings about death and desperately trying to find himself and figure things out. "Perfect Blue Buildings" is a sweet sad one with lyrics, "I'm trying to keep myself away from myself and me". "Time and Time Again" was my favorite. It built to a nice crescendo and down again. This record is an excellent choice for a rainy day believe it or not. Thanks to Tom Chick for the suggestion. 

I just listened to The Cult's album "Electric" for the first time. This is 80's heavy metal but not straight shredding like the hair bands and the Warrants of their day. There's more competence to their music. I can hear a blues foundation. They come up with cool riffs like in "Wildflower". The singer's voice was real smooth. I like he didn't go into high pitch falsettos for the choruses like many of his contemporaries. Their rendition of "Born to be Wild" was actually pretty good! I wish I'd discovered these guys in high school. I might have stretched beyond Motley Crue. Thanks to Philip Thomas for the suggestion.

I just listened to King Crimson's album "In the Court of the Crimson King" for the first time. I was expecting psychedelic rock but its more progressive, kinda on the side of Jethro Tull and Moody Blues. They get real experimental musically too. "21st " has a sax and a guitar solo battling each other while overlapping. They are trying to say something deep with "Epitaph". The lyrics mention, "the fate of all mankind is in the hand of fools". "Moonchild" goes wayyyy off the deep end. 12 minutes with many change ups and 5 minutes dedicated to the sound of scurrying bugs. It's the kind of album prog rock fans gobble up like candy. Ultra serious vinyl collectors revere this album as a rare find and wax poetic about its innovativeness. I'm ignorant to its influence and its place in history, but I'm proud to say I heard it. Thanks to Dylan at Nobel Records for the suggestion.

I just listened to David Bowie's album "Hunky Dory" for the first time. This is quite the romp! The music is great, it's in Bowie's era of his Ziggy sound. This has a lot of existential lyrics. "Quicksand" gets really deep with, "knowledge comes with death's release.". "Oh! You Pretty Things" says the line, "looks like the nightmares here to stay". There's references to space and Mars, is this a prequel to Ziggy? I loved his Andy Warhol impression. I recognized him as Andy in the movie Basquiat. I loved this album. I gave it 2 listens to already. I might do a 3rd right now. Thanks to Sal Espana, Rob Kolar, Robert Raymond, and Lief Cedar for the suggestion.

I just listened to Bad Company's debut album "Bad Company" for the first time. A hard rockin' band from the early 70's. My favorite unexplored era lately. I knew "Can't Get Enough", "Ready for Love", and "Bad Company". They still rock. However, I have three others that are my favorites that I had to play again after the first go around: "Don't Let Me Down", "The Way I Choose", and "Seagull". I never knew Bad Company could make beautiful ballads. A charming surprise. These altered my expectations and elevated the album immensely. I'm curious to hear their later stuff. Thanks to Ritchie M. Angeles for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Beatles' album "Please Please Me" for the first time. YES, I've heard of the Beatles. YES, I've listened to many of their albums, but there's a handful I haven't and I want to be able to say I've heard every Beatles song. I discovered a few b-sides on this one I really loved. "Misery" was a great. "Anna (Go To Him)" was a melancholy one. The Beatles really knew how to tug at your heartstrings. "Baby It's You" had that "sha la la la la" that makes me smile. The few covers they do they make them DISTINCTLY Beatles. Such great harmonizing. You can start this album on any song and you will find yourself listening to the rest involuntarily. They are all so good. What a great band. Thanks to Michael Treblig for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Doors' album "Strange Days" for the first time.  There's a lot of power to Jim Morrison's voice when he wants it. He purposely sings soft and then explodes in a howl. "Moonlight Drive" was my favorite. A single string riff. Really cool. "Horse Latitudes" was an intense poetry reading. "Love me Two Times" and "People are Strange" are the hits I recognized. "When the Musics Over" continues the tradition of an 11 minute closing number. As a Tool fan I appreciate long songs. I view Doors albums like Pink Floyd's, they are meant to be listened to without skipping a song. I really zone out to them. They are perfect for me to paint to. Thanks to Brian Butler for the suggestion.

I just listened to Blue Oyster Cult's album "Agents of Fortune" for the first time. A hard rock bluesy kinda band. I like that right out the gate they give the middle finger to the generation of bands before them with a rocking "This Ain't the Summer of Love". This band might have issues with women tho. In "Revenge of Vera" they're terrified they're going to be killed by Vera and thrown in a ditch. "Sinful Love'" they're looking for a pistol, a knife or a laser to cut out this evil she-devil. They say, "I love you like sin but I won't be your pigeon." Anyone know what that means? Calling someone a pigeon, I'm assuming, is pejorative in some way. "Don't Fear The Reaper" is still a killer tune. It's my favorite on the album, dare I say it's because of the cow bell. Thanks to Steve Gelder for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Rolling Stones' album "Sticky Fingers" for the first time. "Sister Morphine" has to be the greatest Stones song I've ever heard. It plumbs the dark depths of drug use. Is it autobiographical? Is it a warning to themselves? How much is fictional? It's a beautiful acoustic number with an electric guitar solo over the top and chilling lyrics like "turn my nightmares into dreams". Such irony as the the false dream is the nightmare. "Dead Flowers" and "Moonlight Mile" that follow also blew me away. They feel like a trilogy, just perfect ordering. This album also has "Brown Sugar" and "Wild Horses" but come on... "Sister Morphine" is the killer! Thanks to Brian Butler for the suggestion.

I just listened to Lou Reed's album "Coney Island Baby" for the first time. I have never heard anything like Lou Reed before. He's almost doing a poetry reading more then singing. His subjects are all about dark, hard living, city street life. He draws on topics like strippers, pimps, and psychopaths that cut and kill people for thrills. It's all done with this light upbeat strumming soft rock. It's that strange juxtaposition of it all that's captivating. He sings about love almost sarcastically, as if his world is too bleak for it to possibly be real. This is an unconventional album. Don't let the cool music trick you, it's very, very dark. Thanks to Erin Lampart for the suggestion.

I just listened to Pink Floyd's album "More" for the first time. Their first movie soundtrack album. I didn't know this until after I heard it. Makes sense since some tracks are all instrumental and have changes that are a bit abrupt, no doubt following the action on the screen. "The Nile Song" and "Ibiza Bar" were the hardest rocking Pink Floyd has ever gotten. Very cool to hear them stretch into it. "Crying Song", "Green is the Colour", and "Cymbaline" were very pretty ballads. The best track by far was "More Blues". A sweeeeeet weeping solo by David Gilmour. I listened to this over and over. I wish it was much longer than 2:12. His string bending and the notes echoing into the distance were smooth space mushroom beer going up my veins. I read they agreed to do this so they could be film composers as a fallback, you know, just in case their careers as creators of amazingly mind blowing music and concerts didn't pan out. Thanks to my alien travel companions for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Brian Jonestown Massacre's album "Their Satanic Majesties' Second Request" for the first time. This is definitely influenced by Cream and a lot of acid. Most of the songs reference tripping and drug use, but that's the genre they're targeting. This is psychedelic rock. It's not as melodic or sophisticated as Pink Floyd but it's got some good ones. "All Around You" is wonderfully insane!  You have to hear it. "Donovan Said" was a slow dreamy one. They tend to bring up Jesus a lot, I wasn't grooving on that too much. My favorite was "Anemone". The women singing was terrific.  This band makes zero apologies for what they are.  They fit in perfect playing hippie type festivals. Respect. Thanks to Chris Schilling for the suggestion.

I just listened to Living Colour's album "Vivid" for the first time. Some great 80's hard rock. "Cult of Personality" was the only song I knew and it's still a killer song. I had no idea how political this band was. "Open Letter (To a Landlord)" about burning down buildings in the projects for cash. "Funny Vibe" is speaking out against bigotry with lyrics like "no, I'm not gonna rape you".  "Which Way to America" is about what he sees on tv is not the America he sees out his window. My favorite song was "Broken Hearts" a sweet sad song with some phenomenal bass guitaring. The album is a little stuck in the 80's but I think it still holds up - certainly their message is as strong as ever. Thanks to David Butler and Melissa Maroff for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Tragically Hip's album "Road Apples" for the first time. They seem to be a cross between country and rock band. I wouldn't call them southern rock cuz they lack that blues element. They use a lot of slide guitar and twanging. The singer has the style of an opera singer, he doesn't sustain a clean note instead he has a propensity to warble. There's a lot of passion there tho, which I latched onto. My favorites were their ballads "Long Time Running" and "Fiddler's Green". There is a great guitar solo on "Bring It All Back" and I enjoyed the tempo changes in "On the Verge". I'd be interested in hearing their later albums to see if they go deeper country or more rock. Thanks to Billy Dale and Chris Hallen for the suggestion.

I just listened to Squeeze's album "Greatest Hits" for the first time. These songs span many years and you can hear the changes their sound went through. The early stuff had an Elvis Costello feel, that I really liked. When they entered the 80's you KNOW they entered the 80's. Some songs were pure synth with every instrument coming from a casio. They became the ultimate new wave band.  What kept me listening was their wonderful imagery. Every song tells an elaborate story that you can lose yourself into. "Up the Junction" was cool and rockish. "Slap and Tickle" was hilariously 80's. "Pulling Mussels" was pretty wicked. "Tempted" and "Black Coffee in Bed" I remember from MTV. My favorite was "Labeled with Love", a sad story about a British woman who gave her life to a man in Texas that died drinking. I forgive them they went a little country considering the setting. Thanks to Lee Ann Burgess and Paul Reese for the suggestion.

I just listened to Van Morrison's album "Moondance" for the first time. This this THIS is a GREAT album! "And It Stoned Me", "Moondance", "Crazy Love" all amazing tracks, right in a row.  I replayed "Into the Mystic" 5 times before moving on to side two. It completely rocked my gypsy soul! It's one god damn beautiful song!  This record is: jazz, blues, crooner, it's got a brass section, organ, piano, electric guitars, flutes, bongos and a triangle - it's just great rock and roll! This goes in the vinyl collection. No way I will do every album of his, it's 200 miles long. Thanks to Roberto Cumchingas and Troy Murray for the suggestion.

I just listened to Massive Attack's album "Mezzanine" for the first time. My first impression was this was emo rock. Not so much. It's more cosmic electronica. The first song "Angel" is killer! A slow pulsating electronic beat that builds into a heart wrenching crescendo - my favorite. "Teardrop" another great track. "Black Milk" has an acid dripping bass soaked beat that is awesome. All my favorite tracks have only women singing. When the men sing they don't really sing as they do whisper talk. I've dug some electronica in the past: Prodigy, Daft Punk, and Moby. This is different, I'm guessing it's trip hop. You don't dance to it as you do sway and nod your head. They would play this genre in the clothing shops on Haight St. in San Francisco back in the mid 90's. It's a really good chill record. I can make good art to this. Thanks to Mark White for the suggestion.

I just listened to Steve Forbert's album "Alive on Arrival" for the first time. It has a a kinda twangy country-folk-springsteen feel to it. Catchy to be sure. It was his poetic lyrics that really got me, like "Mirrors on the moon. Echoing the sun. See just a touch of madness in my eye." on "Going Down to Laurel". "Thinkin'" was a great lift you up song to get out of depression. "It Isn't Gonna to be That Way" was my absolute favorite. Very deep song about your dreams not panning out and formulating new ones. If you don't have the time to listen to the whole album at least spin this one. It's really great. Thanks to Chip Pope for the suggestion.

I just listened to Brian Eno's album "Taking Tiger Mountain (by Strategy)" for the first time. I was shocked right away but these really strange guitar riffs in "Burning Airlines Give You So Much More" but it fell into a really sweet number. This whole record is so different but it grows on you fast. It has an experimental feel to it, like Sgt Pepper.  I think they sampled frogs chirping in a creek on "The Great Pretender". "Put a Straw Under Baby" was eerie and pretty like a nursery rhyme. I had to shut this album off a few times to attend to my kids and I found myself humming the tunes. This album had to have influenced Elvis Costello. Thanks to John Silver for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Cream's album "Disraeli Gears" for the first time. Dig it, man, this is psychedelic rock that smoked a joint laced with the blues. "Strange Brew" opens the album with some dirty distortion on the bass and Clapton's measured solos. Groooovey. "Sunshine of Your Love" is the hit I knew immediately. They can get really out there on "World of Pain" and "Dance the Night Away" but then drift back to earth with more rocking blues numbers like "SWLABR". This is best experienced with some good indica but remember... the rainbow has a beard. Thanks to Dylan at Nobel Records for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Who's album "Who's Next" for the first time. FINALLY a Who record that doesn't emotionally damage me. This one kicks it! I've heard a few hits on it already. The unknowns to me were just as great. "Love Ain't for Keeping" has a sweet acoustic guitar and Keith Moon's drumming is crazy good. I love the beautiful build up in "Getting in Tune" the dip back to slow then the big ending. "Going Mobile" has a wicked cool psychedelic twerking to the guitar solo. I need to sit down with the lyrics sheet and listen to the whole album again. There's a lot of great writing here. This, to me, is the essential Who album to own. Thanks to Dan Modina for the suggestion.

I just listened to Pink Floyd's album "A Saucerful of Secrets" for the first time. Their musical experimenting from the first album is still beating strong but you can hear their signature sound being birthed. The merging of these two worlds makes this album extraordinary! "Let There Be More Light" starts with a rock and roll guitar riff then an organ oozes in and steers it to the familiar Pink Floyd genius. I love the creeping baseline. Apparently, a spaceship has landed and there's a reference to Lucy in the sky. "Remember a Day" is stretching that surfer rock beat into mysticism. I love the piano in this too. "Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun" is pure psychedelic rock. Whisper singing and bongos is a combination only this band could pull off. Also, I think I heard a flock of seagulls. "Corporal Clegg" is deliciously psychotic. The kazoos give it a twisted smile. "A Saucerful of Secrets" is a symphony unto itself, with four different parts each sounding like a soundtrack to a horror film. "See-Saw" seems a sad tale of a brother and sister, perhaps he died? I got a sense of The Beatles "She's Leaving Home". "Jugband Blues" feels like it belongs on the first album. It has more that style. There's also a marching band and bleating sheep, so weirdly cool. It abruptly ends on the line "What exactly is a dream? What exactly is a joke?" What a cool album! It's strong space mushroom beer. You can hear the evolution and it's fascinating and mesmeric! Thanks to Interstellar Aliens for the suggestion.

(What I posted on Facebook before listening)
Interstellar aliens just knocked on my door with a six pack of space mushroom beer and a Pink Floyd album I've never heard. Time to travel the cosmos again. Cracking one open and dropping the needle...

I just listened to T. Rex's album "Electric Warrior" for the first time. This is a cool, mellow record with razor sharp distortion. It's sunglasses and a low strapped axe kinda cool. I REALLY dig it. "Bang a Gong" is the only song I recognized but they are all wicked. This needs to be heard top to bottom. I've been searching for an album exactly like this for a long time - hard rock but CHILL. Five songs in I knew I wanted this for my vinyl collection. I will sketch much art to this record. Thanks to Rob Kolar for the suggestion.

I just listened to Public Enemy's album "It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back" for the first time. Yeahhhhh boy! Old school hard core hip hop. This has great political messages of racial inequality and media lies caked in with sick samples and beats. The great era of P.E., NWA and Ice-T. Takes me back to high school. "Bring the Noise" kicks much ass. Chuck D is a great rapper with a cool, deep voice. Flavor Flav spits rhymes on "Cold Lampin' with Flavor". "Terminator X to the Edge of Panic" samples Queen's Flash Gordon. They even sample Slayer on "She watch Channel Zero". Awesome. "Black Steel in the Hour of Chaos" was my favorite. I dig music with social commentary you can jump to. This does just that. Thanks to Lenny Shelton for the suggestion.

I just listened to Big Brother and the Holding Company Featuring Janis Joplin's debut album "Big Brother and the Holding Company Featuring Janis Joplin" for the first time. Janis' voice is so different and overflowing with painful emotion. I listened with my eyes wide. When she belts out the ending of "Bye, Bye Baby" I was like, 'yes, more of THAT!' They get super psychedelic with "Light is Faster Than Sound". Songs without Janis singing are good but somehow empty. "Call on Me" Janis kills it. Even when shes harmonizing with the band she stands out and steals it all. My favorite was "All is Loneliness" it's a soft, trippy, euphoria and Janis shrieks her lines and takes it into the cosmos. Her voice is just remarkable! I will do every album of her. Thanks to Kirby Kent for the suggestion.

I just listened to Jimi Hendrix's album "Electric Ladyland" for the first time. This whole record is KILLER! How was Jimi making that sound in  "And the Gods Made Love"? This is a precursor to "Eruption". Even with a motown type love song "Have You Ever Been" Jimi is bending magic with his subtle solo. Why have I not listened to this before? Damn! "Crosstown Traffic" is great but I love it when he went psychedelic! "Voodoo Chile" on side 1 was acid drippy lava lamp awesomeness! This track steals the show for the whole record! Over 14 minutes and every band member has a turn talking to Jimi's guitar. It's astounding! Was this a jam session they happen to record? One amazing guitar solo after another on every song.  How did he make that sound on "Burning of the Midnight Lamp"? "1983" was dreamy amazing. I've never heard another guitarist duplicate what he did on this record. I will do every Hendrix album. Jimi, why did you leave us so young? Thanks to Steven Lolli for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Frank Sinatra's album "Songs for Swingin' Lovers" for the first time. The king of the big band crooners! Damn, Frank had a golden throat. It makes me want to put on a tux, walk around with a cigarette and a scotch on the rocks. Every song swings, baby. When the brass section punctuates a number man you feel it in your chest. You forget how great lyrics were back then "I'm borrowing a love song from a bird" from "Too Marvelous for Words" is one example. This is a great blue eyes album. Is there a bad one? I picture spinning this in the living room while my wife and I are in the kitchen having a romantic date night making a fancy dinner together, occasionally stopping to twirl her and steal a smooch. Thanks to Bob Claster for the suggestion.

I'm about to listen to The Who's album "Tommy" for the first time. I'm gonna write this as I listen... Deep breath... "Overture" sounded like Clockwork Orange and I'm thinking, "oh, boy here we go, it's gonna be as disturbing as Quadrophenia."  Damn, the sound is big and grand. Ok, it starts with a child being born in 1921. He's deaf, dumb and blind. Not good. "Eyesight to the Blind" is killer song. Holy shit "Christmas" is psychotic! "Cousin Kevin" WTF! Give you a push at the top of the stairs! Just to be a bully? Dickhead! I don't trust "The Acid Queen" She's gonna hurt Tommy. She's gonna tear his soul apart. His parents are assholes. OH MY GOD "Fiddle About" has an uncle molesting him! SHIT man!! Ok "Pinball Wizard" Tommy has found his niche. "Tommy Can You Hear Me" was pretty. Someone smashed a mirror I don't know why. It's bad tho I'm sure. Ok, there's a miracle cure? There's a catch. There has to be. "Sally Simpson" seems to take a liking to Tommy. Oh no! Tommy threw her off the stage! A gash in her face! 16 stitches. Geeeez. "I'm Free" I think he's dead? "Welcome" is this a cult? The after life? "Tommy's Holiday Camp" scares me. He's in a bad place. "We're Not Gonna Take It" Ok wait, is Tommy a cult leader now? I'm sooooo confused and upset. We forsake you gonna rape you let's forget you? What is GOING ON?? What. The. Actual. Fuck. Was. That? I gotta calm down. Why does The Who DO this to me? The music was phenomenal but the story makes me baffled and angry. Tommy lives a heart wrenching life and his only happiness is pinball? I know there's more but I'm too disturbed to dissect it. They mind fucked me again! Come on, man! Geez! Thanks to Mike Strong for the suggestion.

I just listened to Cheap Trick's album "In Color" for the first time. The mighty Cheap Trick's second record with the hit "I Want You To Want Me". This album still retains that 70's rock rawness tho a little more refined. They are getting more love song oriented. Hey, it worked for the Beatles. "You're All Talk" has Rick Nielsen bending the strings in his guitar like Pink Floyd. "Southern Girls" was the killer track for my money. I always thought they said "You're five feet of crazy and everyone says it." Turns out it's "You rock me and you're crazy..." who knew! I always feel good after rocking to a Cheap Trick album. Who doesn't? Communists that's who! Thanks to 10 year old me for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Kinks debut album "The Kinks" for the first time. This swings, baby! Yeah! This was many years before "Lola" and their sound is different, it's very early Beatles-ish and a bit of surfer rock and blues. "So mystifying" is my favorite groovy tune. Their sense of humor is there right away "I'm a Lover Not a Fighter" and I'm built for speed was hilarious. "You really Got Me" is definitely the most famous track on here, and it's held the test of time amazingly. This is a time capsule of the British Invasion era and it's happenin', baby! Thanks to Michael Treblig for the suggestion.

I just listened to Creedence Clearwater Revival's debut album "Creedence Clearwater Revival" for the first time. It put a spell on me. Great blues and psychedelic rock. It's almost heavy metal. John Fogerty's voice is gravely like he's a hard drinker and it adds and nice flavour. You get the extended version of "Suzie Q" on the album. A sweet guitar solo for a good 3 minutes. I had the greatest hits CD of CCR but you miss the great b-sides like "Gloomy" and "Get Down Woman". This is a great album from a great band. Thanks to Michael Treblig for the suggestion.

I just listened to Joe Jackson's album "Look Sharp!" for the first time. I dig this! Kinda like Elvis Costello but a bit more bluesy, 80's-ish and punk-ish. I really enjoyed "Sunday Papers" not a topic often sung about. I like a harmonica in rock music when used right. "Is She Really Going Out With Him" is the hit on it but there's so many other great tracks. "Throw it Away" was my favorite, a real Chuck Berry rocking song. I noticed throughout the album his disdain for people in love is equally matched by his jealousy of them. It's tongue in cheek hilarity. This record goes into the repeat rotation. Thanks to Dan Modina for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Pretenders' debut album "The Pretenders" for the first time. This I classify as punk. It's not as super sonic fast beat as The Dead Kennedys but every bit as in your face. There's a couple nice ballads on it and yes they are still punk. Chrissie Hynde is just soooo damn cool. She tells you to fuck off and stop sobbing like a whiny loser. "Space Invader" triggered my childhood with the video game sound effect sample. My favorite was "Brass in Pocket", just a classic hit. This whole record is pure Pretenders sound and Hynde's super cool voice. Loved it! Thanks to Marti Macgibbon for the suggestion.

I just listened to Rush's album "Moving Pictures" for the first time. Without question the star of this album is the drummer, Neil Peart. It's best listened to with headphones so you can hear the elaborate drum roles switch speakers and go around your skull in a circle. "Tom Sawyer" and "Limelight" are smash hits and completely blows me away. The album takes a turn at "The Camera Eye" and gets oversaturated in synth. In "Witch Hunt" I kept thinking "how much better would this be if they replaced the synth keyboard with a guitar." I know Rush fans are very devout and probably want to brain me with a casio for saying that. What kept me listening was Neil's incredible drumming. Listen to this album and just marvel at this man's talent. Thanks to Michael Treblig for the suggestion.

I just listened to Phish's debut album "Junta" for the first time. What the heck is going on? Someone in "Fee" got sliced in the nipple then tossed into the ocean and died? Duh eff? It's funny, light hearted and dark. Musically, I know they are known as a Jam band but they have a Doors kinda sound, not as heavy, more jazzy and a bit caribbean. Some compare them to The Grateful Dead, as I've never listened to an album of theirs I couldn't say. How much of this was improv in the recording I wonder? Many songs go off on long mesmerizing tangents. Their use of harmonizing falsettos was new and cool. I'm still confused as to the lyrics. They are dark Dr. Seussian absurdities. I think it's telling a long tale, I don't know. This is a very, very different kind of band. Different is good, it's what appeals Devo and XTC to me. Phish is a band that needs more albums exploration. They've got me weirdly spinning and curious for more. Thanks to Darius Vitkus for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Doors debut album "The Doors" for the first time. It's almost psychedelic rock. Perhaps it is considering Jim Morrison's propensity for hallucinogenic usage. For a three man band their sound is very full. "Light My Fire" and "Break on Through" I've heard before. "Soul Kitchen" and "Back Door Man" were great stand outs. My favorite was "The End". I was introduced to this by the movie Apocalypse Now. It's an eleven minute epic song that gives you the feeling of danger lurking in the shadows. So cool. I'll always have a soft parade in my heart for this band as Ray Manzarek directed the movie "Love Her Madly" and hired me as an actor for my first speaking role. I'll never forget my audition. I delivered my lines then he said, "Wow, that was really great read! How do you feel about piercing your tongue?" He was serious and I did. Thanks to Brian Butler for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Dead Kennedys album "Plastic Surgery Disasters" for the first time. This is PUNK. It's fast paced and crude. Early 80's indicator with "Terminal Preppie". The lead singer has a Johnny Rotten influence to his style, almost a character he's doing. Like all true punk there's slight political anti-establishment message to it and a sense of humor. I recognized this album from my skateboarding days, the older skaters would bring their boombox and crank this while they shredded and I fell off my board. It's nostalgic candy to me. Great work out record! Thanks to Craig Coleman for the suggestion.

I just listened to The Animals' album "The Best of The Animals 1966" for the first time. This has some of the best blues rock music you will ever hear. This is a great band! Eric Burden has the coolest voice ever. There is no better version of "House of the Rising Sun" in rock history. "Boom Boom" is a fantastic Jon Lee Hooker cover. It's got so many great ones: "It's my Life", "Bring it on Home to Me", "We Got to Get Out of This Place", " Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood" and so many more. I loved this so much I listened to their self titled 1st album "The Animals" and then their 2nd "The Animals on Tour". Every song soaked with great blues. This is one of my favorite 60's bands of all time. Thanks to Michael Treblig for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Elvis Costello's debut album "My Aim is True" for the first time. He has a style of singing that's all his own. It's engaging. I've heard this called punk, I don't see it. It's straight up rock and roll, kinda has a 50's bee bop feel to it . I really dig it. "Mystery Dance" is a cool rockabilly ditty. My favorite was "Watching the Detectives". Just a real cool song. This is a great album to put on at a party. It's upbeat and it makes me boogie. There's not a single track I would skip. It's all fun. I want to learn the lyrics to sing along. Thanks to Janet Lee Brown for the suggestion.

I just listened to Pink Floyd's debut album "The Piper at the Gates of Dawn" for the first time. This is Sgt Pepper on an intense acid trip and I couldn't stop listening.  It's like surf rock with the walls melting. There's so many layers to the experimentation it compels multiple listenings. "Astronomy Domine" was The Ventures in Space album with a psychotic "Twilight Zone" rendition. "Lucifer Sam"... is this about a cat? "Flaming" had some creepy lyrics with "yippie you cant see me but I can you". In "Pow R. Toc H." the haunting carnival pipes kept me thinking about the scene in Apocalypse Now at the Do Lung bridge. "Interstellar Overdrive" alternated between speakers in my headphones making my eyes involuntarily look left and right. "Bike" is definitely a love song. He's expressing his feelings to a woman by saying he'd lend her his bike. This is also the song where their fascination with clocks chiming began. On the whole, this album is a bubbling cauldron. They just added the space mushrooms and it's starting to brew. It's Pink Floyd at their most raw and it's great! Thanks to Jamie Regan for the suggestion.

(What I posted on Facebook before I listened) 
The multi-tentacled bartender at the Lunar Bar has pulled a frothy glass of cold space mushroom beer and awaits my arrival with my alien travellers... another unheard Pink Floyd album is queued up and I'm hitting play...

I just listen to Joni Mitchell’s album “Blue“ for the first time. A very autobiographical folk record. Some songs it’s just her and a guitar or piano and others there’s a full band behind her. Her voice is very pretty. She hits amazing high notes. Many tracks are of sad topics, drinking and loneliness. I feel for her. She’s one of those artists that if you let it, her music can go way deep and really hook you. Thanks to Michael Treblig for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Fleetwood Mac’s album “Rumors” for the first time. I can see why this is always placed so high in ‘all time’ rankings. A LOT of hits. It’s a mellow record, good to chill to. “Never Going Back Again” was my favorite. A close second was a piano ballad “Songbird”. I get the sense from many lyrics there’s trouble a brewin’ in the relationship department. Heartache: the great song writer. This and Nirvana’s “Unplugged” are great back to back. Thanks to Traci E Regan for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Van Halen‘s debut album “Van Halen“ for the first time. Crazy good first record! I’ve heard many songs on this already. “I’m the One” and “Little Dreamer” were wicked cool unknowns to me. “Atomic Punk” was my favorite. It sounded like he was scraping the guitar strings with the pic in the beginning. Eddie’s solo on it was just as good as “Eruption”! Why was this never on the radio? The whole record kicks serious hard rock butt! This is a band I will do every album. RIP Eddie. Thanks to David Gilbert for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Yes’ album “Fragile” for the first time. If Primus and Supertramp had a baby this is it. Big twanging bass guitar riverdancing all up and down the scales. Synthesizers play a big part too. The sound is big! It could be a concept album telling a story, I’m not sure. “Cans and Brahms” made me laugh. You have to hear it. “Mood for a Day” was my favorite. A sweet acoustic instrumental. I believe the proper term for this is progressive rock. It was fun. Thanks to Keon Kobra for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Patti Smith’s album “Horses” for the first time. It’s pretty and bizarre. I wouldn’t call it punk but it’s definitely alternative. I got a real Velvet Underground feeling from it. “Gloria” seemed to be a mish mash of an original song and a cover. "Redondo Beach" had a cool reggae flavour to it, probably the lightest number on it. "Birdland", "Land", and "Elegie" all had these long stream of conscious beat poetry breaks in them. Interesting lyrics like “someone had spread butter on all the fine points of the stars. Cause when he looked up they started to slip.” When the album was over I sat in silence for long while just thinking about it. It kept me searching for how to feel. It’s what new music often does. Thanks to Marti MacGibbon for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Pink Floyd’s album “Obscured By Clouds” for the first time. Every song on here was entirely too short. I’m told it’s a movie soundtrack, that might explain it. “Obscured By Clouds” enters with a low organ key and a thumping heart beat of a bass guitar. Drums and guitar join in and I start to smile as the drug that is Pink Floyd starts to kick in... The first song and “When You're In” are entirely instrumental. I noticed the drums are featured more on this album than any I’ve heard thus far. “Burning Bridges” had two singers take turns at a verse then harmonize for the rest. I dug it. “The Gold It's In The” is the hardest rock I’ve heard Pink Floyd yet, great drum rolls and a killer guitar solo too. “Wot's Uh The Deal” has a beautiful piano solo. I was impressed with the lyrics “there’s a chill wind blowing in my soul and I think I'm growing old.” In “Mudmen” has a synthesizer with that weird cosmic sound effect, and in the far distance is a twinkling of piano. Love this song. “Childhood's End” was a fast tempo and more bluesy rock. “Free four” is a light hearted frolic about death. Never trust a happy Pink Floyd song. Some pretty deep thoughts in the words: “the memories of a man in his old age are the deeds of a man in his prime.” What I loved best about it is it’s filled with this really cool bass guitar with distortion on it (I think that’s what it is). “Stay” does a cool guitar effect. I wish I knew the terminology, but I’m guessing a whammy bar or wah wah pedal. Then they tweak it with an effect to make it sound like it’s underwater. Am I making sense? “Absolutely Curtains” ends the album with children singing in a different language with some elder (man or woman?). There’s something special in every song to make you listen to the whole album. I found it sweet, delicious space mushroom beer that tingled the tongue in my ear with carbonated bubbles. Thanks to a few of you for the suggestion. 

(What I posted on Facebook before I listened)
It's time to drink the space mushroom beer again. I've queued up Pink Floyd's "Obscured by clouds" and about to take the first time ride... album review to follow.

I just listened to Heart’s debut album “Dreamboat Annie” for the first time. You may not agree with this review but try try try to understand.. I’m a magic man. This album grabs you by the throat with that song. Then punches you in the nose with “Crazy On You”. Then, surprisingly, it slows down and delivers nothing else but ballads. They were cool, but I wanted more of the beginning stuff. One things for sure when Heart wants to rock they can effin’ rock! Thanks to Michael Treblig for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Talking Heads' album “Remain in Light” for the first time. This is very, very different. It’s a very bass guitar heavy band. They favor the bongos too. They are almost in the Devo category for uniqueness, but definitely not punk. "Once in a Lifetime" is the hit on the album but my favorite was the all instrumental "Right Start". It was cool and mesmerizing. This whole record seemed to be building up to this last song, weirdly preparing you for it. This band is eccentric and their sound crept into my brain and won me over. Thanks to Earle Monroe for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Steppenwolf ’s debut album “Steppenwolf” for the first time. This is almost heavy metal it rocks so hard. "Born to be Wild” is the signature track but by far not the only kickin’ one. “Desperation” is a killer song about not giving up. It's a rocking ballad with a positive message. My favorite on the album. “The Pusher” is an anti drug dealer number. You can sense by their outrage they’ve had some bad run ins. “The Ostrich” is a protest song with a lot to say: “The water's getting hard to drink. We've mangled up the country side” and “Don't criticize the father land. We'll send out all our boys in blue. They'll find a way to silence you.” I played this record on a continuous loop illustrating and never got burned out on it - it’s a killer album! Thanks to Michael Treblig for the suggestion. 

I just listened to The Marshall Tucker Band’s debut album “The Marshall Tucker Band” for the first time. “Can't You See” is a such a magnificent song. The lead singer puts so much emotion into it. The lyrics are pretty deep too with lines like “I'm gonna take a freight train. Down at the station. I don't care where it goes”. The rest of the album turns SO country I felt the urge to call my sister and have phone sex with her. If The Allman Brothers 2nd album dissolves into this sound I hope I don't have to rethink my opinion of southern rock again. “Can't You See” is just so so good tho. Put that on loop, like i do. Thanks to Mike Iannibelli for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Jefferson Airplane’s album “Surrealistic Pillow” for the first time. It wants to be hippie dippie drippie but it can’t help but being more rock and roll. “My Best Friend” is a good example of that, how flowery and wavy gravy it starts out then keeps breaking into hard rock. “Somebody to love” totally kicks butt! “Comin' Back to Me” was a soft acoustic diddy. He drifts in and out of singing and speaking. Very different. “3/5 of a Mile in 10 Seconds” was one you would hear in an Austin Powers dance scene. “How Do You Feel” had some big harmonizing on it. “Embryonic Journey” was a soft instrumental, possibly influencing Led Zeppelin. “White Rabbit” this the stand out number. Inspired by Alice in Wonderland, it’s a slow build up, like “Stairway to Heaven”, and ends with a sustained vocal note and heavy rocking. Just great rock and roll. Thanks to Chris Fitzhugh for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Miles Davis album “Kind of Blue” for the first time. “So What ” eased into it with a pluck of an upright bass, a piano slid in all sly-like then the trumpet and drums kicked in demanding to be heard. It’s cooooool jazz, baby. “Blue In Green“ had a lonely trumpet and the dummer was using wire brushes to give the effect of it raining. Really creative. It sets the mood just so for this sad melody. I enjoyed this album immensely. This is jazz at it’s best. It’s an album you can seriously mellow out to. Thanks to Tom Obryan and Steven Lolli for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Elton John’s album “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road” for the first time. What a great ride! This is an epic undertaking of music. 17 songs, all hits. I call this piano rock like Billy Joel and Reo Speedwagon. Only it’s much more than that. It’s jazzy, jamaican, disco, banjo pickin, silly, sad, broadway musicalish, carnivalish, yet ALL rock and roll -- and highly addictive! One thing for sure Elton can SING! His voice is amazing. I love his falsetto. His piano playing is inspiring. The song compositions are incredible. This is a mind blowingly great album! Thanks to Sophia Reichert for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Prince's album “Purple Rain” for the first time. This is my first time hearing “Let’s Go Crazy” with headphones on so I had no idea how deep the lyrics were “When we die what's it all for”. And man can Prince shred on guitar! “The Beautiful Ones” Was a booty song if I ever heard one. I loved ”Darling Nikki”, the sex crazy dominatrix that blew Prince’s mind. His version of “Whole Lotta Rosie”. “When Doves Cry” is a killer song but “Purple Rain” is the masterpiece on it. The album is drowning in synthesized keyboards and drums making it undeniably 80’s, but who cares it’s Prince! Thanks to Keon Kobra for the suggestion. 

I just listened to The Allman Brothers Band debut album “The Allman Brothers Band” for the first time. I dig this! It’s Rocksie bluesy southern rock. Country music is not my cup of tea and that’s tainted me against southern rock all these years. I admit I was wrong. Dickey Betts vocals has a gravel to it that suits the blues so well. The opening echo effect on the guitar in “Every Hungry Woman” was wicked cool. My favorite was “Trouble No More”. A familiar blues riff. The drummer’s frequent crash symbols gave a nice shower to it. “Every Hungry Woman” great track, again the drumming is phenomenal. A different kind of ballad is “Dreams”, the organ and lead guitarist are doing a cool dance. “Whipping Post” is some painful heartbreak he’s singing about. We’ve all been there, brother - sing it! I really, really like this album. Really? Really! This is a band I’ve been seriously missing out on. Thanks to Bob Claster for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Pink Floyd’s album “Meddle” for the first time. From the beginning of “One Of These Days” with that slowwwwww fade in of wind then the bass starts - the hairs on my forearms tingle and I was like, “ohhh, yeah here we fuckin’ go.” I know I heard the devil speak. What did he say?? “A Pillow Of Winds” is a dreamy acoustic masterpiece with an echoing electric guitar solo. “Fearless” had that perfect gentle touch of electric guitar distortion with the piano sprinkled in. Lovvvved this one. “San Tropez” was a smokey late night jazz club number. All I kept thinking of was that slow camera push in to Jack Nicholson‘s face hidden in the photo at the end of The Shining. “Seamus” was an exploration of bluegrass on grass. Then comes “Echoes”... starting with that high piano key being hit like an anvil ringing from a smith’s hammer. Around the middle of the song the beat and bass become perfectly in sync. The rhythmic tap of the high hat was like a swaying rattlesnake feeling the groove. That guitar distortion mixing with the organ is just amazing. Also, I swear I’m hearing things deep in the music like a murder of crows squawking and people screaming. Am I crazy? I’m drinking all this in like smooth space mushroom beer. Some bands have so many records it feels daunting to go through them all. Pink Floyd’s albums span five decades and I think “it’s not enough.” Thanks to Gerard Brazill for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Cheap Trick’s self titled debut album “Cheap Trick” for the first time. When MTV first went live “If You Want My Love” was one of their first videos and when I heard that i was HOOKED. Their “One on One” album was the first record i ever bought. It was my first experience going into a record store with my big brother and sister and them explaining to me it’s like a library, all done alphabetically. That giddy feeling when you find the band’s name flipping through the tabs, the panic that the one you’re looking for is sold out then the elation when you find the last copy! Later years i would spend hours there discovering cool album art like Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden, and Ted Nugent (a guitar painted like a shotgun blasting off! Whoa!). Cheap Trick was the largest in my meager collection: “One on one”, “Dream Police” and “Live at Budokan”. This album review project has reignited that old flame (pun intended) for the mighty Cheap Trick. They may not be everybody’s favorite but they are still mine and I’m gonna do every album, like i should have all those years ago. 

Here we go... This album has that GREAT late 70’s raw hardrock sound. They were perfect for when they were opening for AC/DC back in the Bon Scott days. “Speak Now or Forever Hold Your Peace” is fantastic! This would be a hit even today. “Mandocello” is a really cool bass driven ballad. It’s blowing my mind how good this is! “The Ballad of TV Violence” has a definite Led Zeppelin influence. ”Oh, Candy” gives a wicked guitar solo. Rick Nielsen is an under-appreciated guitarist. The best thing about this album is it shows they didn’t need a couple records to find their sound. They are CHEAP TRICK right out the gate and I LOVED it! Thanks to 10 year old me for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Bruce Springsteen’s album “Greetings from Asbury Park, N.J.” for the first time. Right away in “Blinded by the light” I hear a Bob Dylan sound to this singing style. I don’t notice this on songs he does years later. I’ve heard a cover of this more than the original, didn’t know Bruce wrote it. I love the introspective autobiographical nature of his writing like in “Growing Up”. “Mary Queen of Arkansas” Wow. What a great track. “Lost in the Flood” was an epic shoot out story. This real? It’s pretty deep. This album has a much cooler sound than the few songs I’ve heard off “Born In The USA” which is profoundly 80’s. This is blues and rock and his own version of big band. He’s also creating his own folk music with his lyrics. I can totally see now why he has such a loyal following. I think I’ve become a convert. Thanks to Melissa Maroff for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Supertramp's album “Crime of the Century” for the first time. Is this a rock opera? I think it's telling a story. It had a Pink Floyd flavor to it. The saxophone, piano and I think it's an electronic harpsichord are big elements in their music. “Bloody Well Right” is a classic I’ve heard before. I dig the long twanging wacka wacka effect on the guitar. That’s the technical term im pretty sure. “Rudy” sounded like the music they used during chase scenes in that TV motorcycle cop show Chips. They have a big sound. I would imagine they were a stadium band. Is “Logical Song” a chapter to another long rock opera? Are they known for this? This band makes me ask a lot of questions and want to listen to more of their music. Thanks to Sal EspaƱa for the suggestion. 

I just listened to The Police’s album “Synchronicity” for the first time. How some consider them punk is beyond me. They are almost soft rock. The hits more than stand the test of time “Wrapped Around Your Finger”, “Every Breath You Take” etc. Their melodic riffs are instantly recognizable. The b-sides are just as cool. “Mother” was like WTF is this? Someone's got serious mommy issues. In my digging through whole albums I often experience the joy of unearthing a precious gemstone. “Tea in the Sahara” is that find. Just a beautiful, beautiful song. It should have had as much air play as “King of Pain”. Unless you bought the record you probably never heard it, like me. Get some headphones on, hit play and close your eyes. Thanks to Mia Kim for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Curtis Mayfield’s album “Superfly” for the first time. It’s super 70’s funk-a-delic! How fun is this album? This guy does bass and bongos right! “Little Child Running” sets the sound for the whole thing. It’s a delicious soulful groove that made me slither in my chair. That twanging bass dominates much of the record (that’s such a staple of that era). “Pusherman” was my favorite. I first heard this sampled by Ice-T on his song "I'm Your Pusher". Now I know. I get the feeling this album doesn’t take itself too seriously. It’s meant to be a frolic. No, I’ve never seen the movie but now I’m going to. Thanks to Dan Madonia for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Devo’s debut album “Are We Not Men?” for the first time. If “Whip it” is all you know about Devo, you don’t know Devo. They are way punk. This album delivers pure late 70’s punk rock. It’s psychotic goofiness and I love it! Their rendition of “I Can't Get No Satisfaction” is the best. Baby-baby-baby-baby-baby! There’s a bit of surfer rock influence, if it was punching you in the face! “Space Junk” is my favorite. Why? like every song on it, it’s just FUN! Are we not men - WE ARE DEVO! I’m going in for more! Thanks to Leif Cedar for the suggestion. 

I just listened to The Moody Blues album “In Search Of The Lost Chord” for the first time. Early 20’s punk rocker Brett hates this with all his being, however middle aged dad Brett actually appreciated it for what it is. What is it? It’s 60’s psychedelic dance-naked-in-a-river-hippie-music. “Departure” opens with a cosmic poetry reading then fades into “Ride My See-Saw” which actually rocked. The harmonies are large and loud like The Turtles. The rest of the album melts into a peace and love festival with bongos, wind chimes, lots of flutes and acoustic guitars. “Om” prominently featured a sitar. Their drug influence is hilariously obvious with “Legend Of A Mind”, a song all about Timothy Leary. I hear The Beatles and Harry Nilsson influence for sure. The next time I dance with Mary Jane this goes on the turntable. Thanks to Christine Sumner for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Jane’s Addiction’s album “Nothing's Shocking” for the first time. When “Up the Beach” started with the bass line then jumps into that awesome guitar I was like yes yes and more yes! This is a band squarely in the grunge category with a slight leaning to funk with the bass guitarist's riffs. They aren't afraid to throw in a brass section either. The stand out track (which I’d heard before), no question, is “Jane Says”, a beautiful ballad of a junkie girl trying to kick her habit. “Mountain Song” was another I’d heard before. Great song. Then out of nowhere they get all lounge singer with “Thank You Boys”. It made me smile at the randomness of it. Then right away they get back to grunging with “Pigs in Zen”, another kick ass song. This whole record kicks ass. In ‘88 I was listening to G-n-R. Where was this? Thanks to Nancy Leopardi for the suggestion. 

I just listened to The Smiths album “Strangeways Here We Come” for the first time. I struggled at the start to like this but with every track it kept going deeper. The lead singer has a hypnotic droning way about him. He’s clearly depressed and has a dark sense of humor which I dug. It comes out in songs like “Girlfriend in a Coma” and “Unhappy Birthday”. They join the ranks of other bands that criticize the record industry with “Paint a Vulgar Picture”. Musically the whole thing is very pretty which is an awkward juxtaposition considering how melancholy it is, like staring at a beautiful woman in a coffin. That’s what became the appeal for me. I didn’t want a punk track I wanted it to keep doing what they were doing. It creates a longing. Thanks to Dave Zabell for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Kolars self titled album “Kolars” for the first time. This is a veryyy cool album! It’s sound is very unique. It’s rock, slightly electronic, bit of rockabilly, little psychedelic, great harmonies and a metallic echo to it. The drummer has no snare, opting for tom toms, and stands on a tap dancing bass drum, if that makes sense (watch their videos to get it). “One More Thrill” is a killer opening. A driving beat, an electric tweek of the vocals, and a hard rock striking of the guitar. I played this 3 times before moving on to other tracks. “Beyond the World of Man” slips into a cosmic melody. “Turn out the Lights” had a Twin Peaks theme flavor to it. My favorite was “Haunt Me”. It’s a drippy dance beat that melds into a rock chorus. Every track on this album is tasty goodness. Thanks to the lead singer of Lemon Sun for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Pink Floyd’s album “Wish You Were Here” for the first time. This was more melodic than other ones by them I’ve heard thus far. “Shine on” and “Wish You Were Here” could have easily been radio hits. Were they in the 70’s? Perhaps they were too long for radio play? “Welcome to the Machine” was pretty dark. I liked the erie heartbeat horror movie start and the feathery acoustic strum of the guitar into the vocals. Lyrically, I thought it meant a kid finishing school then being dropped into the grinding workforce, but i think it's about the sleazy record industry. This album has a slight funk to it, especially the bass. A little feel of Stevie Wonder’s “Superstition”. One thing that really impressed me was the tempo changes throughout. I can’t imagine the rehearsal length to get that perfect. Like “Animals” I think of this as one long track and should be listened to that way. That has to be the intention the way songs fade into each other so seamlessly. When I sit down for a long night of sketching or painting I will put on “Dark Side”, “Wish” and “Animals” all in a row. They feel like a trilogy to me. These albums take you up a mountain where aliens are waiting for you to take you to a lunar bar for some space mushroom beer and back again. There is no other band that comes close to Pink Floyd and their sound. This is one of those artists where I will listen to every album. Thanks to Brian Butler for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Pink Floyd’s album “Animals” for the first time. I wish i had listened to this sooner in life. I knew right from the beginning I was going to like it. They let you know right away in “Dogs” with lyrics like “So that when they turn their backs on you. You'll get the chance to put the knife in” that this an an album to be taken seriously. It’s not a teenage pop band. Unlike “Learning to Fly” that is heavy on the synth and is distinctively 80’s, this album has a gritty sound to the guitar that i really, really like. The long, drifting guitar solos are just so soooo good. It’s deliberately slow but filled with substantial richness. It’s like an old turtle, from afar seems plain but when you get up close you see intricate engravings of a thousand runes on it shell. There’s no hit singles on here. The whole album is one giant track. Headphones is the way to go. Maybe some good indica. Get your sketchbook out and let the music dictate the art. I enjoyed this so much I’m going straight to trying “Wish You Were Here”. Thanks to JJ Hoffman (and many others) for the suggestion. 

I just listened to The Beach Boys album “Pet Sounds” for the first time. This is NOT the Beach Boys I know from classic radio stations. My mother had one record of theirs “The Beach Boys Party”, it was all surf songs and cruising in hot rods. This album is soooooo sad. It’s like they ripped the words and emotions out of a lonely teenager’s diary. Yes, there’s heartache and lost love but also deeper subjects of a lost soul and anguish. Musically it is deceptively complex. I can’t decipher some of the instruments they used. On “I Know There's An Answer” it sounded like a comb with a sheet of paper wrapped around it, and some kind of circus organ. Definitely a harpsichord, coconuts, and an accordion. I’m sure I heard a symphony kettle drum on “Let's Go Away For Awhile”. “Sloop John B” was my favorite. Such a beautiful song. It even tapped into me being a little kid on my first sleepover crying “I wanna go home”. Is there a double meaning with drug use “the worst trip I’ve ever been on”? “God Only Knows” could be a cry for help with words like “what good would living do me”. “I Just Wasn't Made For These Times” really spotlights an isolation and no sense of belonging. This album really bubbles up some emotions in me. If I’m ever feeling depressed and I want to stay there for a while yet not sink any deeper this is what I would put on. Every song is haunting and lovely. It’s innovative and dark, nothing like I knew the Beach Boys to be. I absolutely love it. Thanks to Rob Kolar for the suggestion. 

I just listened to Jethro Tull's album “Aqualung” for the first time. This album is great! Who knew a flute and hard rock go together to perfectly? The only 2 songs i ever heard from this band was “Aqualung” and “Locomotive Breath”. 95x in Syracuse you failed me again. “Cross Eyed Mary” opens with a flute then kicks into a killer rock guitar. I said ‘oh, hell yeah’ aloud and started head-banging. Each song is as good as the last. Some were acoustic, others heavy with piano and violins. “My God” channeled Black Sabbath with an in-your-face guitar riff, then rolls into a fluttering flute solo, then dips into a Mozart Requiem gothic choir. I’ve never heard anything like it. It’s so different and completely rocks! “Hymn 43” drumming is epic. “Wind Up” caps it off with a slow build up and gradually breaks into a teeth grinding guitar distorted riff. It reminded me of Tool in its structure. The lyrics struck me as well. He has some sort of anti-religious breakthrough declaring “you can excommunicate me” much like Huckleberry Finn taking his stand saying to hisself “All right then, I'll go to hell” (I might be seeing more than is intended). I had no idea how cool this record is. I’ve listened to it twice already. Thanks to Rick Garvey for the suggestion. 

I just listened to the album “What’s Going On” by Marvin Gaye for the first time. How beautiful is this man’s voice? So full of emotion right off it’s leading title track. I loved his anti-war and police brutality message too. His falsetto is wonderful as well. My favorite is “Hold On” Not just the melody but the message too. Lyrics like “Some of us feel the icy wind. Of poverty blowing in the air”. It adds a much deeper layer to it. “Inner City Blues” is another brilliant politically charged one. Lyrics like “Crime is increasing. Trigger happy policing. Panic is spreading. God knows where we're heading”. As relevant today as it was in 1971. How to categorize the music?... it’s funk, soft rock, it boogies and it’s soothing too. It’s an album you can dance to, and you can dim the lights, maybe light the fire, and make sweet sweet love to. Thanks for the recommendation Robert Raymond 

With a recommendation by Jana Wimer I listened to “Drums and Wires” album by XTC for the first time. The first word that came to mind was quirky. It’s a new wave band infused with punk rock guitar, most importantly punk attitude. At first i didn’t get it but with each song I liked it more and more. By the time I got to “Millions” I was rockin my head and tapping my foot. I enjoyed the drummer using tom toms instead of the snare. The trumpet solo on “This is the way” is something to behold. The song ends with all the instruments dropped and just the trumpet playing the sad goodbye. Loved it. “Scissor Man” has this electronic keys i can’t explain, almost video game sounding but also like drops of water in a full sink. You have to hear it to get it. ”Complicated Game” totally kicked ass. His angry singing was way punk. Probably my favorite. This was my first introduction to the Post Punk genre and I’m intrigued to hear more. 

Wow. Just finished hearing "Quadrophenia" by The Who for the first time. The whole way through the music made me keep thinking "something bad is going to happen". It's this fictional autobiographical story about a really emotionally disturbed young man. He feels isolated, misunderstood, gets into street fights. When he drinks gin he becomes jekyll and hyde talking about raping women. I have to read the lyrics to fully understand, but after 90 minutes I walked away feeling exhausted. It had me on edge. I'm still a little. It's kinda disturbing. Was there really a resolution? Was it just a cathartic outpouring? Did the rain cleanse him in the end? What the eff, man? I would not recommend this on mushrooms. It's too intense. I need some Beatles to get me out of this dark cloud I'm in now. Dude. Jeez. 

Just finished listening to "Exile on Main St." by The Rolling Stones for the first time. The whole album has a different frenetic energy to it than most Stones songs I've heard. That took me by surprise cuz i read they were on a lot of heroin at the time. The only track I've heard on this before was "Tumbling Dice". The rest were very fast paced blues soaked romps with piano splattered all over them. "Ventilator Blues" was my favorite. Bass and snare then a twangy guitar joins in then a piano then a brass section. Mick's singing is joined with backup singers and it becomes full and loud. The beat remains a stomping march consistent throughout it. This record is really, really good and I find myself compelled to listen to it again to figure out why it grabs me the way it does. 

Just listened to David Bowie's album "The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars" for the first time. It was FANTASTIC! Ziggy where have you been all my life? My introduction to Bowie was "Let's Dance" in the 80's. I assumed that was his only sound. This was rock, pop, xylophones, acoustic - everything. I didn't catch all the lyrics but it sounded like an epic tale of this Ziggy rock star guy. It felt like a rock-n-roll broadway musical. I'm definitely gonna give this many listens. Every song was amazing. Thanks to Melissa Maroff for the suggestion. 

I’ve officially listened to every album by Led Zeppelin. I find it impossible to rank them. They are one of those very rare bands that you could put all their records in a pile, pick one at random and it would be great. If you want just the hits Zep IV or II. If you want something more melodic and slower III or Houses of the Holy. If you want more experimental lesser known songs then Physical Graffiti. To buy a greatest hits of Led Zeppelin i feel would do the band an injustice. Each album should be listened to on the whole, if you can go in order like i did, its even better. Its really cool some have you have followed me with this and got inspired to bust out your Zeppelin records and put them on the turntable. I cant pick a favorite album, but from their entire catalogue i can pick my favorite Zeppelin song. Here it is... "That's The Way". 

Just finished listening to Led Zeppelin's "Coda" for the first time. I read "We're Gonna Groove" and "I Can't Quit You Baby" were covers. They definitely molded them into a Zeppelin creation. The rest were different version outtakes of other songs on previous albums . I loved them the same. A cool look at the creative process. Page's solo on "I Can't Quit You Baby" is extra jagged. The stand out track was by far Bonham's drum solo "Bonzo's Montreux". I swear he was channeling Tito Puente loaded with THC and espresso. Whelp, that's every album. There's deluxe edition remixes left but as far as studio albums i've done them all and so glad I did! 

Just finished listening to Led Zeppelin's "In Through the Out Door" for the first time. I love the begining to "In the evening". That distinctive Page guitar distortion kicks off the album right. It dips into a slow misty fog for no reason then climbs out of it smoothly. It's weird but you accept it. "Fool in the Rain" is a stand out hit on it and Bonham's fills impress me the most. Is "Hot Dog" an Elvis tribute? "Carouselambra" went through five different changes, but Page's melodies hooked you back in each time. Then to my surprise they go synth for that last part. Perhaps a Rush influence? My favorite was "I'm Gonna Crawl" A heartbreak song that seems to take you through the stages of grief. A slow soothing song with punches of rage. Sooooo good. Onto the final album "Coda".

Just finished listening to Led Zeppelin's "Presence" for the first time. It was over too quick. "Achille's Last Stand" was a 10 minute epic. "For Your Life" was cool with a foreboding riff. I've heard "Nobody's Fault But Mine" before and still loved it. The stand out track i replayed a few times was "Hots On For Nowhere". I have a weakness for songs that use general pause. Page's solo was razor sharp. "Tea For One" was a tasty trippy metal one, with a long guitar solo that had a touch of sadness to it. It's hard to break down these albums in terms of songs. I get the feeling each one was meant to be listened as a whole. They all have their own sense of self, a time capsule of the bands creative moment. Two albums left. Next is "In Through the Out Door". I don't want this end. 

Just finished listening to Led Zeppelin's "Physical Graffiti" for the first time. I had to listen to this album 3 times before writing about it. The only songs I heard before were "Custard Pie", "Trampled Under Foot" and "Kashmir". An entire double album of Zeppelin songs brand new to me, like finding Smog's empty cave full of treasure. The distortion guitar riff on "In My Time Of Dying" sounded like a crying animal. The tempo changes and drumming were a never ending swirl of confusion till the end. So cool. "In The Light" had that erie beginning that grabs you by the wrist immediately. It has a dark build up then a change up to a happier tone that drifts gently back into that erie beginning sound like Roy batty's 'tears in rain' speech. "Bron-Yr-Aur" acoustic guitar lets your mind drift off untethered. "Down by the Seaside" was so bluesy. The vibrato on the guitar giving that stuttering effect was so perfect. "The Wanton Song" they somehow made the organ and guitar mimic each other. "Boogie with Stu" was a mississippi piano bluegrass romp, amazing drumming on this one. "Black Country Woman" was a nice combo with Boogie. Bonham's drums kicks in hard and heavy at the end then off in sky a harmonica compliments it. "The Swan Song" was that a steel guitar they used? The bass guitar strings sounded loose with a long twang to them. Maybe an upright bass?Drums join the mix and drive it home. Bonham hits a crash cymbal and we follow that final note to the fade out and end the album. This record is absolutely fantastic! If anyone else like me hasn't heard this all the way though yet, you are missing out. Take a 90 minute time out, sit down with some headphones on and treat yourself. Onto Presence. 

Listened to Led Zeppelin's "Houses of the Holy" for the first time. Loved it. It's more melodic and slightly slower paced than previous albums but richer in depth and color (if may get pretentious). Tracks I've never heard: "Rain Song" threw in some gentle violins and piano. "The Crunge" had a bit funk. "No Quarter" was trippy with soft distortion cords at the perfect level (me and Mary Jane will slow dance together to this one). This album goes very high on my favorites list. I wish I'd done this 'every album' adventure sooner in life. Onto Physical Graffiti. 

I listened to Led Zeppelin IV all the way for first time. I’ve heard every track on this album before except “Four Sticks”. I read it was titled that cuz John Bonham held two drumsticks in each hand recording it. Just a powerhouse of a record. Hit after hit. It’s the most hard rock of their work at this point. I wouldn't go so far as call them metal but the influence it will have in that genre is undeniable. Onto Houses of the Holy. 

Just finished listening to Led Zeppelin III all the way through for first time. Discovering these b-side songs i've never heard has been an absolute delight. "Out on the Tiles"and "Bron-Y-Aur Stomp" are great. The stand out track that put the hook in me was "That's the Way". The acoustic guitar is just beautiful. How was this never played on the radio? 95X in Syracuse you have failed me! This is a band clearly with four members who were at the peak of their powers and the top of the talent pool on their instruments. Onto Led Zeppelin IV. 

I just finished listening to Led Zeppelin II all the way through for first time and, man, it was great. Every track killed it. I even loved the instrumental songs and that weird harmonica part that sounded like Robert Plant's mouth was full of marbles. I would prob skip a couple songs on LZ I but this i'll put on my playlist and listen as an album top to bottom. I totally see why people say this is their favorite. I look forward to Led Zeppelin III. Unlike KISS, i had to choke down a lot of those songs to get through every album, this is a very enjoyable journey. 

I listened to Led Zeppelin 1 all the way through for first time. I recognized a few songs obviously. The b-sides were slow and dripping with psychedelic ooze. Im gonna hit a joint and give it a second listen. 

I’ve officially listened to every album by AC/DC. I definitely favor the Bon Scott years. Powerage, Let There Be Rock, and Highway to Hell deserve to be listened to top to bottom. When Brian Johnson joined they still retained that distinctive AD/DC sound but only Back in Black and For Those About to Rock came close to that raw 70’s rock magic.