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Sound Advice

Music Midtown Lineup Released

The annual music festival held in beautiful Piedmont Park released their lineup today and I am quite pleased with the announcement. Lets take a quick look at the top 10 sets I’m looking forward to (in order of what I’m most exited about):

  1. Beck is a music legend and that show will be the most surreal moment of the weekend.
  2. The Killers are a band that has been on my bucket list since their debut album was released when I was in college.
  3. I missed Nathaniel Ratliff & The Night Sweats on their tour last year…I won’t be missing out again.
  4. I also missed out on Leon Bridges last year. Won’t make that mistake again.
  5. Now I understand why the Lumineers didn’t have a stop Atlanta on their tour this year
  6. Hozier was there last year. James Bay will fill that void nicely.
  7. Ke$ha is back
  8. CHVRCHES – enough said
  9. Collegegrove will be entertaining because…Atlanta
  10. St. Lucia is my darkhorse for most fun show of the weekend

I can only hope the schedule doesn’t have too many conflicts

TBT Album: Weezer

In honor of crossing this group off my concert bucket list later tonight, today’s TBT album is the self titled, debut album by Weezer (also known as The Blue Album). Released in 1994, the California rockers hit the music scene with a unique sound and some of the songs that remain favorites today. While “Buddy Holly” is the most popular song from this album (and one of their most popular songs ever), “Say It Ain’t So” will always be one of my favorite songs released during this era by any band. Even if these guys aren’t in their prime, I am still looking forward to reliving my teenage dreams of seeing them live.

Concert Recap: Keith Urban Ripcord Tour

I went into this concert with pretty tempered expectations but came out pleasantly surprised with how much fun I had. It was a beautiful night in Atlanta and the perfect scene for some live country music. Maren Morris, a newcomer on the country scene, opened with a strong set. She got the crowd singing along to her hit “My Church” and put everyone in a good mood right off the bat. Brett Eldridge came out next (in a straight jacket) to kick off his set with his single “Lose My Mind” which helped keep the good energy going. He rolled through some of his popular songs and put on a good show. Once Keith Urban came out, I was immediately surprised by how good he is at playing guitar. I was not expecting that level of skill at all and that made the show all that much more enjoyable. One of the highlights was when he brought Maren Morris back on stage to sing the song “We Were Us” (originally recorded as a duet with Miranda Lambert). During “John Cougar, John Deere, John 3:16” he also threw in a snippet of John Mellencamp’s “Pink Houses”.

In my opinion, you can’t take country concerts too seriously. So if you are taking it at face value…which is an opportunity to listen to live country music outside on a beautiful night…then it is going to be a good night. Here is the setlist

TBT Album: Sittin’ In

In 1971 Kenny Loggins and Jim Messina put together a fantastic soft rock album titled Sittin’ In that exemplified the sound at that time. This was their first album and what really put Kenny Loggins in the zone (well before “Danger Zone”). I still remember when I was growing up that this CD was one of my favorites in my dad’s collection…and it still is one of the better feel good albums out there.  This album included one of their biggest hits with “Danny’s Song” but my favorite track on the album is definitely “Trilogy: Lovin’ Me/To Make A Woman Feel Wanted/Peace of Mind”. This nearly 12 minute track that takes you on a little journey at each part. The first 1/3 (Lovin Me) is a smooth, groovy track that sets the tone for the rest of the song. The second 1/3 (To Make A Woman Feel Wanted) picks up the pace a bit and gets your toes tappin. The final 1/3 (Peace of Mind) slows it down and gives you exactly what the title claims. I loved this album the first time I heard it and I don’t see that ever changing.

Album Review: Ash & Ice

After not releasing an album for the past 5 years, I was looking forward to listening to the latest album by The Kills…but it kind of let me down. Its got a couple decent tracks but all together it really isn’t anything to write home about. After such a long hiatus between albums, I was hoping for something a little more but the sound is nothing special and kind of all over the place. As the single “Doing It To Death” alludes to, there is nothing unique and this album is more of the same from bands of this ilk. “Echo Home” is the best track and definitely one that I will continue to listen to…but thats about it.

Album Review: Teens of Denial

Indie rocker Will Toledo under the moniker Car Seat Headrest released his latest studio album in late May titled Teens of Denial. I had listened to a few of his songs before but this album caught my attention more than the others. His music is reminiscent of sounds produced rock giants like Radiohead and REM…so if you like either of those bands you should check out this album. I think the best track on the album is “Drunk Drivers/Killer Whales” but don’t miss out on “Cosmic Hero” or “Fill in the Blank”. Give it a listen…

Album Review: Don’t Wake The Riot

Black Pistol Fire released their fourth studio album in May and they aren’t messin’ around with this one. The Austin based duo caught my attention last year when I saw them open for Gary Clark Jr. I wasn’t expecting much but was absolutely blown away. They have an energy on the stage that is tough to rival unless you are Animal from the Muppets (which isn’t far off from the shirtless drummer Eric Owen). Their gritty, bluesy, garage rock sound can draw a lot of comparisons to the Black Keys but these guys aren’t just imitating their predecessors. They draw from that inspiration to make a sound all their own. As for this new album, it is their best full album so far. The two singles (“Bad Blood” and “Fleet Foot”) will rock you to your core. As for the other tracks, check out “Copperhead Kiss” and “Hard Luck” for more songs to get you out of your seat.

I am very excited to see them headline a show at the Masquerade in Atlanta on July 9. $12 well spent. You can expect a full review of the show soon after.

 

Album Review: Day of the Dead

To mark the anniversary of the Grateful Dead last year, a large group of artists compiled covers of different Grateful Dead songs. The list of artists included big names like The National, Mumford & Sons, Jim James, and Wilco as well as smaller artists contributing their own sound to the extensive library of Grateful Dead songs. These songs range from the bluegrass sounds of Bela Fleck covering “Help On The Way” to a psychedelic take on “Dark Star” from the Flaming Lips. Overall, the 39 track album is full of hits and misses…here are my 5 favorite and least favorite covers:

Hit the mark

  1. Sugaree – Phosphorescent and Jenny Lewis
  2. Candyman – Jim James
  3. Ship of Fools – Tallest Man on Earth
  4. Dire Wolf – The Lone Bellow
  5. Jack-a-roe – This is Kit

Missed the Target

  1. Goin’ Down the Road Feelin’ Bad – Lucina Williams
  2. Ripple – the Walkmen
  3. Touch of Grey – the War on Drugs
  4. Dark Star – Flaming Lips
  5. Estimated Prophet – The Rileys

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