Friday, August 27, 2010

Buffalo Springfield - "Again"

For the group's second album, which I picked up recently with their other two albums, they have lessened the number of songs and made a more concise and more rewarding album. The album does not have an instant classic like "For What its Worth" but almost every track here is very good, "Mr. Soul," "Bluebird," "Hung Upside Down" and "Broken Arrow" to name a few. The group continues with the same rock/country sound that was on their debut album but they are refining and growing as musicians. All the songs feel like album tracks, though they are all equally good but none are a smash classic. Most consider this to be the best of their three albums, I personally like "Last Time Around" the best, but this is a good Buffalo Springfield album not really essential to a listeners music collection but still a good listen.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Buffalo Springfield - "Buffalo Springfield"

I bought this album a few months ago. I was considering getting the single disc retrospective for $13 but I found I could get all three of Buffalo Springfield's albums for $20, so I did that instead. This short lived group that spawned a number of far better groups (CSN, Neil Young and Crazy Horse, Loggins & Messina to name a few) were never big hit makers but they did write a number of very good songs.

This album does contain their one and only hit in Stephen Stills' now classic "For What its Worth." But the majority of the album is quite good and written entirely by Stills and Neil Young. The album is strongly influenced by country music but is definitely is the beginnings of country/rock, with a greater focus on rock and pop. The music here is not as great as the individual members would later record but these are the seeds of a great musical tree that was beginning to grow. Other stand out songs include "Go and Say Goodbye," "Sit Down I think I Love you" and "Out of my Mind."

Friday, August 13, 2010

Blindsight - "Gift Horse"

Sorry I don't have an image for this one. This CD was made in 2000 by a guy that I knew in high school. We acted in a play together, we weren't really friends (he was kind of moody) and he was four years older than me, but none the less I bought his band's CD. I thought it was cool to know someone who recorded an actual professional looking and sounding CD, the album is independent of any label but is still very well packaged. He was selling them out of his backpack for $10, so I got one. It is not a bad album, the ten tracks are all originals and the four band members are good players. The music is I guess the best described as watered down heavy metal. I only sort of knew this at the time but the guy and apparently his band were/are very religious Christians. So their album is sort of like Jesus rock; while there are no overt messages about becoming Christian, all the songs have very religious connotations if you listen and sometimes even if you don't. According to Amazon it seems like the band made only one more album but who knows they might be really famous in certain circles or they might have given up on music. I don't really know all I know is I have their first album. I only listened to it a couple of times and I never play it anymore, but it does bring back some memories of my Freshman year of high school. Memories I enjoy.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Jeff Beck - "Performing this Week...Live at Ronnie Scott's"

This is a recent purchase, I actually caught a selection of the this performance on TV and thought it was excellent so I decided to pick up the album. This album did not let me down. After a number of successes in the 1970s, particularly the excellent albums "Blow by Blow" and "Wired," Beck became a little erratic. He toured constantly releasing average albums with large gaps in between. Then in 2006 Beck began to release albums pretty regularly he had two "official bootleg" releases of live performances in 06 and 07, he had a show stopping performance at Clapton's 2007 Crossroads Guitar Festival then he released this album which features the same bass player and drummer from the festival.

It is an excellent live album especially for lovers of the electric guitar. Though Beck does not have the same name recognition as some of his contemporaries his talent is definitely equal. There are 16 tracks, all instrumental, that run for nearly 80 minutes. The album almost plays like a studio recording, aside from the applause a the start and end of each song, the audience is entranced by Beck's guitar and as well they should be. This is a very good live album, it does remove all the duet performances that are available on the DVD of the same concert, but that is not really a minus. If you enjoyed Beck's 70s output particularly "Blow By Blow" and "Wired" this is the Jeff Beck Live album for you.