Thursday, March 26, 2009

Staying Busy and Exploring the Amazing Music of Kaufman's 'Synecdoche New York'

Long Time No Seen; or I am not going to lie to you. As the last weeks has passed by the blog has been under major construction to move into a web host and under a 'dot com' adress. I am currently working to build and construct a new web site template for 'MT&T' and being alone in a crew is demanding, especially in time. As discovering new music and after a short, mini intro to the 'Quadrophenia Q' with St Saddam the blog has reached a point zero degree mode where nothing happens.

First sneak-peak at the New, Better and Funkier 'Music, Truth & Tunes'

The building of a new site takes time and that is the main reason why the blog is currently more or less down. If my planning goes well new 'Music, Truth & Tunes. Com' will be lounged in circa 14 to 21 days with three sepereate blogs, daily news updates and a user template much easier and way less limited than the blogspot.com layout. Keep your eyes open for the new 'Music, Truth and Tunes'.

New music processed; 'Karlek Ar For Dom' by Thastrom and 'Synecdoche New York Official Soundtrack' by Jon Biron.

Stay Tuned, Stay Musically Involved

Friday, March 13, 2009

Where Did I Go?

Lovley Friday Sun in Los Angeles has no resting at all. As the Music, Truth & Tunes week closes to its end it's with delays and alot of work. The delays are the new Quadro Q and some music reviews that I was planning to get up on the blog. So what about alot of work, besides going to school I have taken on a new project with MT&T and that's the building and creating of a free webpage that doesn't rely on the services of google or any adsense.

By building a seperate site that I own I will be able to manage the functions and the content more widely as well as the language of expression which I love to fire up to get the feeling and emotions on music. The new site will be called simply 'MusicTruthTunes.Com' which will be a easier way to search in on and it will contain 4 seperate blogs dealing with the four main labels of the site, Reviews, Profiles/Articles, Interviews and last but not least more Chronicles or 'Signature's' as I refer them to.

Also new on the site is links to order the music I speak of daily and pictures, podcasts that present to you the true side of MT&T's YouTube entrance. But a bulding progress takes time and the new site will probably be done in the middle/end of the next week and untill then, MT&T will be ran as usual but unfortunetly with lesser content. So enjoy and look up for MT&T's entrance to real world and also look forward to the new 'Quadro Q' interview with Swedish underground Singer/Songwriter Annicka Hammar and her views and perspectives on Music and Life in a small Swedish coastal town.

Until further a due, stay tuned, stay interested.
Stefan LG. Henriksson

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Three Personalities of a Great Known for Wrong Reasons Musician or A Story Of John Mayer

When I ask people what they think of John Mayer I recognize two constantly repeating answers. The first is that he’s a great musician but to much of a pop singer and the second is that he’s great. It it’s different and the answer’s background often has to do with musical background or knowledge in music. What he really is and what we think of him is of course dependent on personal experience, but if we look behind and try to educate the unknowledgeable and not caring or if we try to explain to well educated what John Mayer is.

Mayer was originally schooled as a classical guitarist but always had a lot of love for the genre of blues. After a short time spend on Berklee College of Music in Boston, Mayer moved to Atlanta where he gained a lot roots and experience that started his early music career. He was a well known act in the nightclubs circuit of Atlanta and it was around this time that Mayer got signed by Aware Records and released his first full length album ‘Room For Squares’ with hits like ‘Neon’ and the grammy winning ‘Your Body Is A Wonderland’. It was first after his ‘Heavier Things’ in 2003 that Mayer considered his fame that big that he dared to change his concept which lead to the forming of ‘The John Mayer Trio’ in 2005.

About his past and background Mayer says following in his Live Concert/Documentary ‘Where The Light Is: Live in Los Angeles’ from 2008: ‘I come from playing guitar in alone in a room, that’s my story... I must have played alone in a room for eight years’. That’s the schooling that makes us understand the basic fundamentals of John Mayer. After his debut with the Trio where Mayer started to convey his musical roots into his music that he was making. When Mayer talks about the start of the Trio he says that it was an antidote that helped him get rid of the cornered feeling he felt that had gotten to with his pop melodies.

Shortly after the debut of ‘The Trio’, Mayer got back with his band and created ‘Continuum’ that was released in 2006. Keeping his pop sensibility, he brought on many of the influences from ‘The Trio’ and mixed it together to a mellow, blues, melodic critical success. During this time Mayer has shown us many sides of himself, an acoustic, a blues and a pop man hidden in the shy and mysterious personality of John Mayer. When Mayer talks about how he wants his career he simply says that he enjoys when you get something in your grasp, he says: ‘Once you caught it, you throw it back into the water and that’s really what I want to do my whole career’.

Mayer has pulled off everything from his own pop melodic love songs to Hendrix’s ‘Bold As Love’ and ‘Who Did You Think I Was’ including his last year acoustic cover of Tom Petty’s, ‘Free Falling’. Through all this Mayer has showed a calmer side and with his biggest hit ‘Waiting On The World To Change’, people of all musical circles always has something to say about Mayer and artists in all genres have worked with Mayer, including Hip-Hop Artist Kanye West to the blues legends Buddy Guy and B.B King.

Mayers blues influences and great interest to the world as far as politics goes is a growing subject matter for Mayer. With humor his personality has made the reputation of Mayer to be a perfectionist and sometimes a arrogant man, still inside the head of this man lies different music styles that only can be compared to the personalities of folk singer/songwriter or legend Bob Dylan. With a touch of humor Mayer claims that no one have seen all of him. Mayer likes to play with music and he is an explorer of importance as being one of few musicians bringing the heavier influences of Blues and Rock into the pop music today and as a better guitarist than singer he has really showed the basic fundamentals of being from the roots of great music pays off, he is a symbol to the instrumental, basics of learning and that’s why I choose to totally love the music of Mayer, together with his original sound, influences and depth.

The Records of John Mayer; 'Inside Wants Out' (1999), 'Room For Squares' (2001), 'Any Given Thursday' (Live), 'Heavier Things' (2003), 'Try! John Mayer Trio Live Concert' (2005), 'Continuum' (2006), 'Village Session' (2007) & 'Where The Light Is: John Mayer Live in Los Angeles' (2008).

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

So Kings of Leon? Kings of 2009? Kings I Would Say

Compared to be a southern version of the past years rock revolutionaries The Strokes, Kings of Leon has really reached the main room of music as the summer and festivals are approaching. The Tennessee band released their new album ‘Only By The Night’ last year and has so far reached their biggest success, so what about Kings of Leon?

Claimed as a experimental rock band, Kings of Leon has emerged trough the 00’s discovering exploring and become an act fitting in to the music transition that I would like to refer is happening right now. We have reached a part of our age here in the late 00’s where we can see a what’s becoming birth of a new regonized era, a reinvention of Rock & Roll is around the corner, the difference is that it comes in a new kind of outfit, the experimental, highly technical music like The Strokes, The Killers, The Hives have all been around for quite a while, but it’s not until now when we can finally enjoy the music daily on the pop radio channels all around the world.

What Kings of Leon are, is that they are the latest piece to the puzzle, a great band who comes in and stabilizes the new somewhat underground music movement that slowly reaches the surface of the unknown mass effected population and with their fast, energic and mellow rock they approach a different appeal than the Hives does for instant. Kings of Leon fits everyone and what the music falls back on is the basic fundamentals of what the rock/punk that we faced in the early 00’s carried on.
Limp Bizkit and Linkin Park was on the other hand our of my world to find any interest in and that explains the less-so-functional era that ended as fast as it showed up. What Kings of Leon does is that it stabilizes a in between that has a chance to appeal to the mass media effected population and hopefully turns things around, at least a little bit. Like the aces or kings in a deck of Cards, enjoy Kings of Leon, I will and I am!

Truth about ‘From Hell To Texas’ by Nashville Pussy

It’s not often these days that you run into a hard, heavy and raging rock & roll record. After Nasville Pussy’s debut album ‘Let Them Eat Pussy’, four rather mellow albums has been produced from the Atlanta rock husband/wife vocal duo and their band Nashville Pussy. Their new album ‘From Hell to Texas’ has a lot more to be thrilled about, it has a bad ass attitude that totally appeals to me. A missing link in a lot of new rock & roll that’s produced today.

‘From Hell To Texas’ reminds a lot of what ‘Slash’s Snakepit’ tried to do, but without the extended sound of Slash. In the opening track of ‘From Hell..’ the band rage on from the start with heavy drums, cow bells and clean rock & roll guitars in a classic rock & roll tempo. Singer and guitarist Blain Cartwrigth sometimes reminds of a punk singer but the clear middle parties of solo’s define the rock influences.

The songs ‘Lazy Jesus’ and ‘I’m So High’ are pure rock songs that sound like a composition in the early eighties before the glamour era came upon and ruined the charm (an exception from Guns N’ Roses). What Nashville Pussy possesses is the straight from hell attitude that makes hard influential rock & roll alive again. The album falls a little short in the middle but has a great end act with the songs ‘Late Great USA’, ‘Pray For The Devil’ and ‘Stone Cold Down’ and one can sense the influences from Guns N’ Roses, Slash in particular and Alice Cooper as the album has a straight on approach to be a raging journey on horses in a wild texas terrain. It’s almost lovable in a sense that it has a relaxed rockish tension over it but as mentioned falls a little bit short on the lack of originality and musical brilliance, yet though a blast worth giving more than just a chance.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Truth about ‘Last Night The Moon Came Dropping It’s Clothes Down the Street’ by Jon Hassel

Jazz has always been a unknown medium for me as a genre. The organized chaos as I have nick named the genre to has never had much appeal to me. So when taking on the album ‘Last Night The Moon Came Dropping It’s Clothes Down the Street’ by musician Jon Hassel I choose to go simply on instinct. Hassel’s new album is not the Jazz you imagine, it has a mellow depth to it, from start with ‘Aurora’ it has a mystique. The blowing trumpet reveals nothing but mysterious thoughts that some how leads out to an organized chaos in some way.

The following ‘Time and Place’ and ‘Abu Gil’ is against my principles but completely fantastic. It’s not until ‘Last Night The Moon Came’ that I realize how influential this kind of music has always been to me. The sore, calm and beautiful song reminds me of a mixture between Thomas Newman’s fantastic ‘Ghosts’ from ‘Road To Perdition’ and Miles Davis ‘Little Church’. It’s a fantastic mix in the true sense that it’s jazz that I am listening to and the personal relations to this calm and beautiful composition may be the edge of the album.
‘Courtrais’ follow the same example but also lifts in the mystique into the music that makes inspiration flow. The sense of a dark and lonely street in a big city at nighttime is the first that comes to mind and the instrumental touches of belonging strikes perfectly well all the way through the end part of the album. The end part is on the other hand a little bit more of that jazz I never tend to fully understand.

The sweet, somewhat misery ending with ‘Light on Water’ for fills the album that overall is more than a pleasant monday afternoon listening. It has a sense of depth, mystique that brings out creativity and inspiration out from the everyday. It’s a pinch of brilliance involved in this mellow, beautiful album of Jazz, that I don’t fully understand came to me a pleasant surprise.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

'MT&T' Hits 'Youtube' and the Week When I Discovered 'Black Wolfe Radio'.

Hello folks, this week has passed on faster than usual. One of the main reasons is because I've been working hard to establish 'Music, Truth & Tunes' on YouTube. The new channel will contain different playlist categories for example; 'Music Videos', 'Music Documentaries', 'Music from The Movies' and 'Music, Truth and Tunes Podcasts'. The last category will be a personal made 'Podcast'-list where I to start off with introduce the blog and its content.

In the future my goal is to gather documentaries about musicians that I write about or music videos that I discuss in the blog. I am happy to introduce the channel that can be found on youtube.com/musictruthtunes. Also worth mentioning is the first interview with an unknown band on 'The Quadrophenia Q'-section of the blog. First out to be interviewed was the Swedish Atom/Rock band St. Saddam where I asked the producer/guitarist Johannes Roth questions about the mystique around the band and their new upcoming full length album.

'Atmosphere' and 'Subterranean Homesick Blues' on youtube.com/musictruthtunes.

So what can we say about this week, after a strange experience with U2's new album 'No Line on The Horizon', I finally got a hold of some of the new albums of the week that will be reviewed during next week. Among them is the last year Swedish release of 'Soundtrack of Our Lives', US-released 'Communion' and also the southern rockband Nashville Pussy and their new album 'From Texas to Hell'. The recent releases from Bela Fleck, 'Throw Down Your Heart, Tales from The Acoustic Pla' and 'Middle Cyclone' by Neko Case was fantastic and brings us hope for an upcoming week in the world of 'Music, Truth & Tunes'.

But one of the most exlosive and interesting discoveries this week is definetly Santa Monica resident Connor Button's 'Black Wolfe Radio', a radio stream by the 19 year old Button, originally from Tucson, Arizona. Well produced instrumental beats, poetry and songs mixed with an atmosphere of depth and a pinch of brilliance was definetly the golden egg of the week, to be interviewed further on the 'Quadro Q'.

Have a Great Saturday Night Folks and don't forget
to tune in onto 'youtube/musictruthtunes'

Elliot Smith, A Musical Mastermind, Driven by the Depts of Life

On March 23, 1998 Elliott Smith walks up on the stage of the Kodak Theatre to perform his song ‘Miss Misery’ from the film ‘Good Will Hunting’. 5 years 7 months later, the musician is found dead in Los Angeles, CA. The rumors claim that Smith had stabbed himself numerous times in his chest. The music, Smith left behind him reflects the tragic death in many ways. We don’t know much about Smith and his deeper thought, the only proof of his emotional journey through life is what we hear from his music, that lives on with us to today.

Elliott Smith was born in Nebraska and later moved to Duncanville, near Dallas in Texas where he was partly raised. After moving to Portland, Oregon, Smith wrote his first songs at the age of 14. He became a member of the band Heatmiser and debuted in 1993 with an EP called ‘Dead Air’. One year later a terrific solo career took it’s start as Smith released his first full length album, ‘Roman Candle’. It was not until 1997, at his third album release with ‘Either/Or’ that Smith reached the main room of the musical independent industry.
Smith’s dark, emotional music had great influences from as well as Nick Drake, as his lifetime idols ‘The Beatles’. What he came to discover was and give his fans was a deep view, that reflects around life and the larger meanings of it. Picked up by Gus Van Sant in 1997 for the movie production of ‘Good Will Hunting’, Smith’s ‘Miss Misery’ was nominated for best original song at the 1998’s Academy Award.

As far as we know, Smith was suffering from a serious depression, which reflected through his music. And after have releasing ‘XO’ in 1998 and one of the heavier, more emotional albums Figure 8’, Smith started working on what came to be his lifetime project called ‘From a Basement on a Hill’.
Elliott Smith never got see his finished project due to a suspected suicide in Los Angeles on October 21, 2003. The murder/suicide is still to this day unsolved and the investigation is yet until this day open. What we know of Smith is not much, a shy person with deep thought of life has left behind us more than we know. Many like to think that Smith’s music reflects his emotions, he is therefore one of the first and most original true talents in the em/folk/alternative genres that has received that huge of success. The music of Smith is phenomenal, the beauty, sentimental depth is something we find in many musicians today. The truth of emotional music with the basic simple tools of acoustic strings and a piano is the truest we will get inside the musical genius of Elliot Smith.

'Quadro Q' on 'St Saddam' Q(&A's)

In the last post the ‘Quadrophenia Q’ revealed information about the first band that will be interviewed on ‘Music, Truth and Tunes’. Through a chat session with Johannes Roth from Stockholm, Sweden here is the answers to the ‘Quadro Q’s’ asked to the St. Saddam guitarist.

Q: Thank you for participating, lets get started , you’re currently working on a new record on your record label RMI, if I’m correct? How is it going and what can we expect from the new album?
A: Yeah, that’s correct. We started working on it last fall and we can’t say much more than that it is rushing forward slowly. We have been trying to experiment with our sound or rather than experiment, develop it. The album will probably be somewhat calmer and softer but we can guarantee that we won’t be holding in on the, rocking stoner riffs.
Q. Sounds great! You’re Currently working on a new record on your record label RMI, if I’m correct? How is it going and what can we expect from the new album?
A. Yeah, that’s correct. We started working on it last fall and we can’t say much more than that it is rushing forward slowly. We have been trying to experiment with our sound or rather than experiment, develop it. The album will probably be somewhat calmer and softer but we can guarantee that we won’t be holding in on the, rocking stoner riffs.
Q. Promising, do you think it can It be likened with your previous EP, ‘Biohazzard Blues’?
A. It will be easy to draw parallels to our older songs. It might even be that one or a few tracks are from the older material, but re-invented and developed in a new sound. Hopefully it will be a nice mix between old, unrecorded and most all new material.
Q. Ok, and about your genre, you’re probably the only Atom/Rock band that i know of, it’s original but you’ve got to have influences, where to you get your inspiration?
A. I believe that our biggest influence is simply everything that happens around us, life in general in a more simplified and easily described way.
Q. Just a question in between, is it accurate that you are a 100 per cent ‘jam’-session band?
A. Yes and No. When it’s about recording in the studio the songs are very often, well structured but they’re arranged as time goes by. When it comes to our live performances and gigs we are often experimenting and playing with the sound and we consider that improvisation is one of the main parts of our performance.
Q. From your start, you’ve been possesing some kind of mystique around you, would you call that you’re appeal or is it a larger purpose for this mystique? Are you trying to reach more of a musical atmosphere rather than concerts where you’re profiled by the audience?
A. The first time we jammed together we created an atmosphere in the rehearsal space that was almost touchable. That atmosphere is something that has been following us until this day and hopefully it will continue to do so even in the future. If it seems mysterious, light, strange, good or bad is up the audience or the listeners to decide. We are not trying to reach for a forced ‘image’. And maybe that is one of the main reasons why it feels so real or true.
Q. So what about your atom-test-bombing video, across your relatively small fan circle it has become somewhat a disscussion subject, is there a deeper purpose to the video and it that case what is it
A. Once again it’s all about the interpretation of the audience. For some people it has no meaning and for others it strengthens, both the visual and musical experience. For us it has become a part of St Saddam.
Q. Good reviews, positive critcism, why aren’t you doing more music and more gigs?
A. The biggest reason is probably the logistical problems. We are divided in four cities and in two different countries so we have a hard time organizing rehearsals and gigs.
Q. So a direct question to you Johannes, what are you listening to right know? Any Tips you’d like to share?
A. U2’s new album, ‘No Line On The Horizon’ is currently at repeat. Otherwise it’s very much The Doors, Mogwai and Miles Davies for the moment.
Q. So back to you guys and the upcoming record, when can we hear it?
A. I don’t dare to say much more than, during 2009.
Q. From the record to your name. St. Saddam might be seen as quite controversal, what is the background or the history of the name, how come it became St. Saddam?
A. The meaning is that a thing/human/belief/religion and so on, can be possessed by one being and at the same time be hated by someone else. The name itself doesn’t have anything to do with Saddam Hussein himself, like many choose to believe. It’s more a reflection of good and evil in a ironic kind of sense.
Q. I’ve heard the band is currently not as active, is this album the end or the beginning of St. Saddam?
A. It’s hopefully the beginning of a very long end.
Q. So final thing I’ll ask for you, describe the music of St. Saddam with five words.
A. Powerful, Superb, Generous, Sharp and Unified.
Thank you Johannes and good luck to the new record.

Visit St. Saddam on Myspace or on RMI Sweden

Friday, March 6, 2009

Introducing 'Quadro Q' on St Saddam

Now proudly introducing the ‘Quadrophenia Q’. A section of ‘Music, Truth & Tunes’ where I interview upcoming and unsigned musicians, bands or artists about their visions, their music and goals.

The first band to be interviewed is the Swedish, experimental/rock band St. Saddam. The band is currently working to finnish their first full length album on the the swedish indie label RMI. It’s now two years since St. Saddam released their first EP, ‘Bioharrard Blues’ and their most well recognized song ‘Art Of Exhile’. The band call themselves ‘Atom/Rock’ and is a heavier version of instrumental acts like ‘Explosions In The Sky’, ‘Ef’ and ‘Maybeshewill’ with huge influences of postmodern stoner/rock.

Since the beginning of the bands history there has always been a special atmopshere around St Saddam, originated from the Swedish east coast town, Oskarshamn the band recieved great press for their first performances and created a controversy with a political atom test bombing video on a screen stretched over the stage for none to see the band as they give a performance. A Controversial name, constantly mistaken and directed toward Saddam Hussein, St. Saddam has created a name for themselves. As their new album is on the way I choose to interview guitarist and producer Johannes Roth, member of St. Saddam to sort things out and to get a deeper look at the mysterious St. Saddam.

Read all of it tomorrow at Music, Truth & Tunes and check out St.Saddam on myspace.

Truth about 'No Line on The Horizon' by U2 (Rewritten)

Maybe all art requires a moment of processing. ‘No Line On The Horizon’ was in my previous review a disappointment. 24 hours later, I am not so sure anymore. Sure it’s not what the greatest of U2 is and maybe that’s the point, maybe this is something entirely different. Maybe it required a night of listening instead of a first impression. Maybe I was caught up in what should be and what shouldn’t.

Due to the previous review I ask for an apologue. I’ll keep the first part of the review where I write what a magnificent opening the album has because it opens as strong as it could possibly do and I don’t know on which planet I spend my last afternoon, because the middle is influencial, it’s beautiful and ‘No Line Horizon’ becomes a ‘Viva La Vida’ phenomenon. As I listen to it my fourth time I realize that I had the same problem with Coldplay’s ‘Viva La Vida’. I regret my mistake to try the quickness instead of relying on the art of music.

What ‘No Line On The Horizon’ really is, is a better version of a ‘How To Dismantle an Atomic Bomb’ and ‘All That You Can’t Leave Behind’ and the grey pieces of ‘All You Can’t...’ are composed together with the colorful energy of ‘How To Dismantle...’ which creates a new atmosphere. That ‘exclusive’ thing of ‘No Line on The Horizon’ that I closed my last review with is not especially strong. It’s weak and it’s changeable, because the thought of this as a jam session instead of a blueprint totally works and in a time frame of 24 hours ‘Moment of Surrender’, ‘Unknown Caller’ and ‘Cedar’s Of Lebanon’ joins the terrific opening of the album with ‘No Line..’ and ‘Magnificent’, and resembles into a still mellow but somewhat ‘brilliant/but not really yet’, journey in a not at all negative blurry line on the horizon, but a deep, beautiful blurry line on that horizon.

I beg a pardon for my ignorance to the art that I love.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Truth about 'No Line on The Horizon' by U2

I expect for a lot when I press play on 'No Line on The Horizon' and after song one I am thrilled about the next one. The opening intro and 'No Line on The Horizon' kicks off the beginning of a promising after noon. I love how U2 has done this thing of opening up their albums with terrific songs, just look at 'How To Dismantle an Atomic Bomb' and the song 'Vertigo'. 'All That You Can't Leave Behind' had 'Beautiful' and not to even mention the 1987, 'Joshua Tree' opening with 'Where The Streets Have No Name'. Classic songs of U2, modern as old has come through this sequence of opening up the albums.

'No Line on The Horizon' feels like a little coming back to the technical instrument aspects rather than the raw musical instruments like in 'How To Dismantle an Atomic Bomb'. Which is fine and 'Magnificent' holds on to much beauty. The in between just makes me tired. After 'Magnificent' I am facing 6 experimental tracks with onky one thumb up and that is; 'I'll Go Crazy If I Don't Go Crazy Tonight' but even though the rather mellow before and after tracks I find myself not quite paying attention to the album at all anymore. The album of March is gone, the album of the year? What are expectasions, when the result takes you down.

Still 'No Line On The Horizon' has a brave closure to it. But that doesn't mean that it isn't quick. 'White as Snow' is a beautiful technical, little experiment that I dig. 'Breath' aims it up at bit and I, that thought that I had a rock & roll album in front me. The outro signifies the rather weak album that hoped so much out of and maybe 'No Line on The Horizon' is a more litterary title that I would think it would be. The album is blurrly little line that never really comes together, it's cool for two songs and then it loses me still even though my dissapointment didn't get me sold I do agree that it was an okay album, okay but not much more. The conclusion is that even if this was a no-blueprint planned album and more of a jam session I still would like to say, stick to the blueprints. In the end I presume that this album will be either recalled as greatness or blunder, when and what that will be I am not sure of, therefore I lay myself in the middle only for it to get better as I am sure it will be as time goes by.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Proudly Presenting the Quadrophenia Q

Now introducing the 'Quadrophenia Q', a series of short interviews and personal opinions on hand picked musicians and artists struggeling for recognizion will be revealed on 'Music, Truth and Tunes'. Starting off this upcoming two weeks, two interviews will be posted. Unknown artists will get a chance to talk of their art and get more listeners.

The Quadrophenia Q reflects to the 70's film about mods and the power of free expressionism. It also reflects the society where we want our young talents to receive recognition by the world in order to preserve the great in music as an artform and a way of expressing itself. The 'Q' stands for 'Questions' and in this case my questions will give you easy views on what these people hope for, what they do and what their goals are. Taking off this first week the Swedish, Atom/Rock band St. Saddam will give us a comment on their upcoming album on their new label 'RMI' and also the meaning of what the bands music reflect to themselves as well as to the crows. This including short bio and links so you can listen for yourself and see what you think.

The first 'Quadro Q' will be posted in the end of this week.

Looking forward to getting started!
Have yourself a terrific and great tomorrow!

Truth about 'Astral Weeks: Live at Hollywood Bowl' by Van Morrison

It doesn't come as s suprise, that if Van Morrison where about to choose one album to perform live, it would be 'Astral Weeks'. The 1968 'Astral Weeks' is a timeless classic but there's always this worrying criticism that he could ruin the mythic around the album with a live performance. I have heard the Hollywood Bowl is suppose to be a terrific spot and this is where this live concerts take place. I found it a shame to myself that I haven't actually been there and watched a singe concert since I moved here but I'll just have to do like everybody else. Listen to it on my iPod and say what I think.

In this case, a catastrophy is far away from what the result becomes. The opening with 'Astral Weeks/I Believe That I Have Trancended' aholds up somewhat a terrific touch of settle, which is needed for a version of a classic rock album. After a not so strong 'Beside You', Van Morrison creates a timeless version of Slim Slow Slider. There's a calmness and softness that relies on the original version I can image Van Morrison sitting on a stool as the crowd falls into the fantastic rythm of the song. It surprises me that this strong of a song comes this early and this only brings me hope to the rest.

The concert goes along great and it really keeps this terrific, magical atmosphere and it's not untill the peak when you'll get surpised by the magic eloded into the bowl. 'Cyprus Avenue' comes out terrifcly well, it's timeless and probably the edge of the concert so far. It keeps me settled in my bed. I can't think clearly, if I'm just glad or if the bittersweet and tender music controls my mood. Followed by 'Ballerina', 'Madame George' and a side kick from 'Astral Weeks' with 'Listen to The Lion/The Lion Speaks, originally from 'Listen to The Lion' that appeared on Morrison's fantastic 'St Dominic's Preview' from 1972.

Van Morrison finishes off, perfect. You can sense the jazz influences from the great rock poet and the music, the atmosphere and deapths of this concert becomes timeless in a large sense. The fresh mix, the hard jazz sounds and the amazing violin played by Tony Fitzgibbon captures the beautiful pieces that makes you wish you where there that night.

The Art of Anton Corbijn or The Master of Visual Images in Music

Photography and music are art forms that in many ways come hand in hand. For one certain person, this has been his living. Through music videos, covert arts and exhibitions Dutch photographer Anton Corbijn has explored a new genre of art. The art of music. Through his fantastic eyes he has captured some of the most classic covers of modern music history. His alternative, dark toned cinematography has been the foundation for some of the most artistic music videos.

Two years ago, Anton Corbijn released his first directed full feature film ‘Control’ which was a story of the Joy Division lead singer Ian Curtis and his tragically short life. When we take a close look at Corbijn’s portfolio we find classic music videos like Metallica’s ‘Hero Of The Day’ (1996), U2’s ‘One’ (1992), Nirvana’s ‘Heart Shaped Box’ (1993) and numerous of Depeche Mode videos and Joy Division's mythical ‘Atmosphere’ (1988).

As U2 is releasing ‘No Line on The Horizon’ and as I wrote my ‘Captain Beefheart Tribute’, I find it rather interesting that the man behind the first mentioned band’s most classical album is this artist and that Beefheart’s last musical work was shot and captured by the vision of Cobijn.
The raw photo of U2's "Joshua Tree' Art Cover. (1987)

At the year 1987, Anton Corbijn captured the fantastic, incredible cold image of the Joshua Tree for the album ‘Joshua Tree’. The image is one of Corbijn's most recognized works and he has later on worked with artists like Nick Cave, Dave Gahan and the legendary San Diego folk/alternative Tom Waits.
Corbijn's Ian Curtis-film 'Control' (2007).

What to be acknowledged through Cobijn is his fantastic vision and view in the participation with some of the most artistic pieces added outside the music, in the music history. Corbijn’s edge is a brilliance to his business and with his latest work Coldplay’s ‘Viva La Vida’ music video Corbijn show’s hope to the art of music videos which has become and has been for a very long time an important medium in the art of music.
The raw photo of The Killers 'Sam's Town' (left) and legend Tom Waits (right)

All pictures are taken by Anton Corbijn and was found on his website.
For more information on Anton Corbijn visit his website: antoncobijn.co.uk

Monday, March 2, 2009

Truth about 'Mr. Lucky' by Chris Isaak

Chris Isaak is one of those artists that reminds you of somewhat country. But it has mixes with it and that ‘Mr. Lucky’ in fact is Isaak’s best album since 1995 when he released his ‘Forever Blue’. In this somewhat ‘comeback’ Isaak has captured the modern college rock that we could find in no one else but Ryan Adams latest albums ‘Easy Tiger’, ‘Cardinology’. First track ‘Cheater’s Town’ is a brilliant kick off for ‘Mr. Lucky’ and the atmospheres of the songs around reminds of something between U2 and the post modern phenomenon ‘Rouge Way’.
There’s somewhat an epic atmosphere over Isaak’s album and I like it from track one. When it comes to reach of the middle section on ‘Mr. Lucky’ we reach two fantastic duet’s. The duet with Trisha Yearwood, ‘Breaking Apart’ is a mellow, calm and easy adult rock experience with an easy going mode to it. Yearwood’s beautiful voice reflects an epic story in a sense and it reminds of so much bond between the artists.
The same go with Michelle Branch’s duett with Isaak in ‘I Lose My Heart’. It’s a terrific song that recalls to a country somewhat rock-a-delic folk tale. The record is a nice, easy listening journey until the great finale where I tense the soul influences on Big Wonderful world which signifies a perfect end to a fair enough journey. The record also welcomes Isaak back and determines that the music is as well, as good and as perfectly suited for today’s audience.

Captain Beefheart, A Magical Band and The Story of A Revolutionary Man

This past week Captain Beefheart and His Magic Band’s first record ‘Safe As Milk’ was re-released. Who was this man? Captain Beefheart and what was his story because few of us might never have heard about the man influenced greats like Tom Waits, PJ Harvey, The Clash, Nick Cave and on long distances Rock & Roll icon Bruce Springsteen. We ask ourselves, when we think of the 60’s and 70’s, why do we never hear of Captain Beefheart. Why is he not one of greats. Because he choose not to be and that’s what signified his music to change the face of the music industry for eternity and so forth.

Captain Beefheart also known as Don Van Vliet was born in 1941 and was raised in Glendale, California. He was an artist of his time and rumors claim that he started sculpting at the age of 6. At the age of 13, Don Vliet was offered a full art scholarship to an Art School in Europe but declined and had his parents move with him to the Mojave desert in order to find a better environment for inspiration.

Frank Zappa was one of Vliet’s older friends and at this time Vliet formed a band called The Magic Band. In a tribute to his greatest idols, Screamin’ Jay Hawkins and Howlin’ Wolf he named himself Captain Beefheart. Vliet’s Beefheart went from pursuing art into shaping that element in music through inspiration the old past masters of blues.
Beefheart had tremendous blues voice and his band soon became local heroes and as former guitarist of the band Doug Moon states: ‘Don could capture the sound of Howlin’ Wolf and Muddy Waters and recreate, not copy it. But recreate it to his own’. At this time the American Labels looked for a way to respond to the 'British Invasion' and they all saw potential in Captain Beefheart and His Magic Band, but no one could recreate Mick Jagger in Don Vliet. Instead the band headed into a darker form of Desert Blues/Rock that later became the influences of what the impact of Homme’s, 'The Dessert Sessions' and Stoner Rock genre came to be.

The Band moved to Los Angeles and recorded their first full length album. The Legendary ‘Safe As Milk’ and on this production famous blues guitarist Ry Cooder had replaced Doug Moon. At this time the band headed even darker into influences and Cooder describes Vliet’s vision:
‘His vision was to take the raw blues elements of John Lee Hooker and Howlin Wolf’ and tear it down so raw that you just would have a sound. Just a grunt maybe and you would add something abstract. You would add the John Coltrane, crazy time signature free Jazz on a Coleman thing and then Hybridize it together, which was a great idea’.

At this time the record company had a large idea around Captain Beefheart and as a proof of their capability, the band was about to get introduced on the Monterey Pop Festival. A Festival that had helped Jimi Hendrix, Otis Redding and Janis Joplin among others. Vliet, suffered from hard anxiety problems at this time and the concert ended in chaos and the commercial idea around Beefheart and his band was lost for a very long time.

It was at this time that Don Vliet and the Magic Band started to work on a new album. The audience was somewhat people rejected by hippies. The one’s who were to strange and they suited well into the Beefheart phenomenon. Don Vliet and his band was locked into a house for 8 moths rehearsing an album that came to be ‘Trout Mask Replica’ and the members of the band weren’t even able to go to the store to by food. It was a dictatorship in which the dictator or mastermind was Don Vliet’s Captain Beefheart composing an album that was recorded as a live session.

The ‘Trout Mask Replica’ was not just touching the brilliance it was among many musicians and fans in particular the best album ever made at this time. It had the best parts of all the genres Vliet tried to reach within; Blues, Rock and Jazz and the experiment did not stop with ‘Trout Mask Replica’ it continued with the controversial album called ‘Lick My Decals Off Baby’ which contained a tv-spot in an extreme artistic way that was refused by audiences. It was even asked to be taken off the air.
After ‘Lick My Decals Off Baby’, Captain Beefheart left the dessert and moved to Santa Cruz in California and this was the period where Don Vliet realized he did not make well profits from being a musician. People and the record labels never really counted on The Captain Beefheart albums to sell well, but they all loved it’s concept. In this transformation to an easier form of blues.

It was also at this time that Vliet started to market himself as a serious artist and establish himself as a painter through several exhibitions. He also declared a love for the Black/White Television medium and his art could be seen through his Cover Art. Captain Beefheart had reached it’s highest commercial break in the history of the band but many fans was dissapointed in Vliet’s later compositions.

After a long term of legal argues Captain Beefheart returned to the studio with a new version of younger musicians in his Magic Band and recorded the three albums that brought the brilliance back to Vliet’s vision. The three albums ‘The Shiny Beast (Bat Chain Puller)’, ‘Doc At The Radar Station’ and ‘Ice Cream for Crow’ was the last pieces we got see with Captain Beefheart and His Magic Band. It was after this commercial and critic success that Beefheart decided to transform himself into focusing more onto his art in order to be recognized as an artistic painter rather than a musician that paints.
Vliet is today a well recognized painter who has pursued great art and is well known in the art societies. It is also clear that Vliet suffers from some form of illness that has made him wheel cheer bound. Still Vliet’s music in form of Captain Beefheart and His Magic Band lives on and has clearly been one of the greatest inspirations in experimental Jazz, Rock and most of all blues that has shaped many artists such as the alternative genres of Rock & Roll as it took it’s shape into become a mix of The Rhythm and Blues in the Rolling Stones as to the Stone Rock Universe of Josh Homme and later influenced Grunge/Rock artist Dave Grohl. As the BBC DJ, John Peel stated: "If there has ever been such a thing as a genius in the history of popular music, it's Beefheart…I heard echoes of his music in some of the records I listened to last week and I'll hear more echoes in records that I listen to this week."

Don Van Vliet or Captain Beefheart was driven by his musical vision. On a borderline between genius and imbalanced he composed together a new genre of Blues/Rock/Jazz that came to be the underground of Psychedelic Rock in 1960’s. He’s music is a source for the experimental greatness we all witness today and that’s why he’s worth his genius and the recognition above all.

Sources for this article comes from: ‘The Artist Formely Known As Captain Beefheart’ BBC Television Documentary from 1994, England, ‘Captain Beefheart Biography: Rolling Stone Encyclopedia Of Rock & Roll’ (Simon & Schuster, 2001) and Allmusic.com: Captain Beefheart: Biography.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Creating a 'Love Letter' and Summarizing this Past Week

Writing a Love Letter in Music can either be to write a song, a music piece or take others work and assemble into your emotional path, through a playlist. I am not a singer, nor a songwriter and definitely not a musicians, but I do love music and one of biggest passions is to create and assemble playlists. It goes all the way from what I call a 'Love Letter' to a 'Syntax List'. It's very often done when I am preparing for a party and assembling a part playlist is normally easier than a 'Love Letter'.

A 'Love Letter' is important, every word must go right, they must follow your interpretation of the girl you're assembling the list to. Since you're borrowing someone else's words, you need to borrow them carefully because situations might be almost like something and the tune of the song might be just brilliant. Lately I have fallen in love with John Mayer's cover of Tom Petty's 'Free Fallin' ' and but to put that in a love letter would ruin the list. Example: 'I'm a bad boy, because I don't even miss her. I'm a bad boy for breaking her heart.' wouldn't fit very good into a playlist for a couple who are about to seperate in six months on a long distance relationship.
My Beloved iTunes Library and my 'Love Letter'.

Today I'm going to share my latest 'Love Letter' to my girlfriend just to do an example of the importance of putting together a brilliant play list through my point of view. First thing you have to go into the heart of what's important, what music does she like and what's the main message of the song, in words. I choose to open my 'Letter' with The Derek Trucks Band's 'Our Love' from 'Already Free'. It reflects the power of love even in distance. Second I choose something to reflect the personality, like my girl is stubborn yet wonderful so 'A Beautiful Mess' by Jason Mraz is a brilliant example of that. You keep on to aim all those personal issues and good events that has occured to you as a couple to increase the feeling of love.
Plain White T's 'One Hit Wonder', 'Hey There Delilah'.

Like all couples, my girlfriend and I have personal songs. Songs that you collect and bond to. Don't ever use the same songs all the time, it's like releasing 'The Greatest Hits' which is cool, once a year maybe twice but definitely not more, a 'Greatest Hits Vol. 12' is not very romantic. It's awfully lazy. In this list I use our seperation song 'Hey There Delilah' by Plain White T's. It's a terribly cheesy song, but it has personal values and that defeats the quality of the song as a 'One Hit Wonder' which it was.

One of the perfect examples of a 'Playlist-Of-Importance' - movie is 'Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist' that hold upon the power of music in relationships and how it makes us attach even more which is really a great addition to a successful or sometimes rough relationship and to sum up this week. Finding DTB's 'Already Free' and Loney Dear's 'Dear John' has really been quite a love journey, that's why I found it a pleasant occasion. Next week it's all about those three bastards processed over night in my last post.

Happy Saturday and Good Night

Friday, February 27, 2009

Processing Overnight

Kings Of Leon - Only By The Night, Van Morrison - Astral Weeks: Live at Hollywood Bowl and Chris Isaak - Mr. Lucky.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Songs We Recall from The Art Motion

As argued in ‘Music Of Cinematic Force...’ posted on February 16th I argued who I thought would win. As one week has passed I am of curiosity looking over what the music forums and main sites such as billboard.com are writing about. As a week has passed I am curious myself what the best ‘Original Song Winners’ are. If you’d list them, I’d maybe agree with billboard.com but since I hate listing commercially, from fairly commercial movies winning at the Oscars I prefer to look beyond and somewhat name, not list somewhat the 12-16 best songs in movies because many of these songs has an effect on the movie, it transforms the movies.

Just imagine what ‘Wayne’s World’ would be without ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ by Queen or a missing ‘Raindrops Keep Falling...’ in ‘Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid’. The power of the song has created memorable moments in these films and If I from a movie/music lovers perspective go back into what songs has captured and transformed my mind, created these moments of honesty and memory of what the film meant to me.


Clips from Magnolia and Almost Famous.


(It’s Not Going To Stop til’ You) Wise Up by Aimee Mann in Magnolia, ‘Suck’ by Nine Inch Nails in ‘Se7en’. ‘Al Otro Lado Del Rio’ by Jorge Drexler for a ‘Motorcycle Diares’ and Elliot Smith’s ‘Miss Missery’ in the fantastic ‘Good Will Hunting. Glen Hansard’s ‘Falling Slowly’ made ‘Once’ and Eminem’s ‘Lose Yourself’ is a definition of ‘8 Mile’. A fantastic piece from a fantastic soundtrack is ‘Just Like Honey’ by Jesus & Mary Chain in Sofia Coppola’s success ‘Lost In Translation’ and what would the appearence of a stunningly beutiful Natalie Portman had been without The Shins ‘New Slang’ in ‘Garden State’.


Clips from 'Once' and 'As it is in Heaven'.


‘The End’ by The Doors in ‘Apocalypse Now’ and ‘Where’s My Mind’ by the Pixies in ‘Fight Club’ are essentials to the films greatness. Bob Dylan’s originally written ‘Thing’s Have Changed’ for ‘Wonder Boys’ is just worth the Oscar and Eddie Vedder’s fantastic ‘Setting Forth’ in ‘Into The Wild’ and ‘Man Of The Hour’ in ‘Big Fish’ are magnificent. Then again people not familiar with a small language called Swedish, may tend to have never heard one of the most fantastic songs of 2005’s ‘Foreign Film Nominations’, at the Oscars. It's Helen Sjoholm and Stefan Nilsson’s ‘Gabriellas Sang’ in the movie ‘As It is In Heaven’. We close this without forgetting about one of the most explsive scenes from a motion picture, the choring of Elton John's 'Tiny Dancer' by Stillwater in Almost Famous is unforgetable.

All clips come from YouTube.com; following clips comes from 'Magnolia', New Line and Magnolia Projects (1999)'Almost Famous', Columbia Tristar and Dreamworks (2000),'Once' Samson and Buena Vista (2006), 'As It Is In Heaven' Sonet Film (2004)

Truth on ‘Already Free’ by The Derek Trucks Band

Vocalist and frontman of The Derek Trucks Band, Derek Trucks is fairly new to me, an in a positive way. In the companions new album ‘Already Free’ I am perfectly introduced to Derek Trucks and it’s somewhat mind blowing. ‘Already Free’ is a mix, just as claimed, Derek Trucks is as well. A mix of ‘feel good’ Rock/Rhythm & Blues with great influences from Bob Dylan, Buddy Guy and Eric Clapton. ‘Already Free’ is the bands 7th album released in a course of 12 years. According to critic’s the 2006 album ‘Songlines’ is the highlight of DTB’s discography, but I no nothing of that so I stick to ‘Already Free’, that’s what I know.

DTB is an original concept, easily mixed with great of greats and as one of few jam sessions bands in the field, the mixes between blues and rock with a touch of funk creates an original piece of music that is spiritual in a ‘feel good’ sense. The album is opened with an exceptional brilliant cover of Bob Dylan’s ‘Down in The Flood’, an open interpretation with a funky guitar and strong vocals that only reminds me of a Buddy Guy. It’s an eternal sound so spiritual that it reaches up and above what ‘Mustang Sally’ made to me in ‘The Commitments’. It’s a pure stylish concept and as the album moves forward into the transitions of track 3, ‘Maybe This Time’ and ‘Sweet Inspiration’ comes to me I sense the rhythm and blues in somewhat a ‘soulish’ way that takes me to the brilliant of Stevie Wonder.
What I realize as I listen on for the second, third and fourth time is how The Derek Trucks Band reaches somewhat an emotional explosion into all their influences, mixing it into a pure true, funky blues version of greatness. Mellow essences of rock, blues, jazz and soul are all stirred together into a original touch that makes this one of the most unique albums I’ve ever sensed to come close to me. And at it’s middle peak it’s not even close to what I am about to say. The tension of some what sweet love melody ‘Our Love’ reaches me at a perfection, it’s exploding in a softness sense into my ears and totally blows my mind.

The emotional aspects of the album is something that I take onto me as somewhat personal and with ‘Down’ Don’t Bother Me’ and ‘Days Is Almost Gone’ is brilliant companions, the music is still breathtaking and as the albums closes with album title named song ‘Already Free’ I don’t really, fully understand what this mix of greatness in music has done to me. Forget greatness on all those guys I’ve been so terribly optimistic about, The Derek Trucks Band’s ‘Already Free’ is in it’s ace of brilliance. This is not great but rather magnificent and magical in the sense that I am captured into an album that changes my night, day and hopefully tomorrow. Gloriously!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Thåström; A Brief Summary of A Great Musician, Internationally Infamous

In every culture there is different symbols in music, film, art that has a great recognition and status in their culture but haven’t received great recognition abroad or in the mass media of the world’s parts in their industries. One of these people that I have decided to present to you is one of the most influential and greatest musicians in the Swedish music history. The composer, guitarist and vocalist Joakim Thåström is one of those musicians that has been a part of major musical developments in Sweden and with bands like ‘Ebba Grön’, ‘Imperiet’ and ‘Peace, Love and Pitbulls’.
Thåström protesting at the Berlin Wall.

Joakim Thåström was born in 1957 in one of the suburbs called Högdalen outside and grown together with the Swedish capital Stockholm. In his early teenage years Thåström started a band called Helt Sonika and with one member of Helt Sonika he later came to create the most famous Swedish punk band of all time, Ebba Grön. The name was taken from a Swedish police code in the try to arrest a suspected kidnapper during the 1970’s and the this was kind of the start trigger for a new political movement i Sweden. The music that Ebba Grön created had strong political atmosphere it and with songs like ‘Staten och Kapitalet’,’800 Grader’, ‘Die Mauer’ and ‘Mental Istid’ they approached a very political appeal influenced by the Swedish ‘Nationalteatern’.

Ebba Grön during one of their local concerts.

As the punk came to its end and ‘so-called’ death, Thåström and the band members of Ebba Grön created The Space Imperium (a.k.a Rymdimperiet) who later changed their name to The Imperium (a.k.a Imperiet). Thåström was a party animal and was one of few who appealed to the rock’ n roll life style and through his new band they approached somewhat a rock’ n roll appeal. Imperiet didn’t last to long and the band shattered in 1983 as Thåström approached for a solo career. Imperiet had tried to create somewhat a synth/rock style that was in line with the 80’s but as he started his solo project Thåström experimented with the harder and rougher parts of his music. He released a rough, hard rock n’ roll act with his album ‘Xplodera mig 2000’ (a.k.a ‘Xplode me 2000’).

Thåström’s solo career didn’t last long, shortly after he moved to the Netherlands in order to explore new fields and parts of music and experiment with genres. The project lead to Thåström’s biggest international success Peace,Love and Pitbulls. They reached huge fame through a concert in at one of the main music festivals in Sweden, Hultsfredfestivalen in 1991. Peace, Love and Pitbulls was a very inspirational source for many upcoming artists and the most famous of these upcoming artists was Marilyn Manson who claimed that Peace, Love and Pitbulls was one of his main influences.
Thåström's Peace, Love & Pitbulls was an influential source to his music.

In 1997 the band went separate ways and this was what came to lead to one of the greatest moves in Thåström’s career as he went back to Sweden to sing in Swedish. This was a calmer and more poetic Thåström and after ‘Det är ni som är konstiga och jag som är normal’ and a live record ‘ Thåström pa Roda Kvarn’ he released a critic success with his ‘Skebokvarnsvägen 209’.  With this album released in 2005, Thåström was renewed in a sense. The calm poetic, deep, well produced singer/songwriter alternative rock was an approach which Thåström reached high recognition at new audiences and younger fans.

Thåström performing today.

In 2007, Thåström formed a new composition of band members in Sällskapet with their big hit ‘Nordlich’ but still keeps his solo career alive with an upcoming album release with ‘Kärlek För Dom’ Thåström becomes always present and a challenger of and renewal symbol of the Swedish music industry. Thåström is one of the main inspirational sources to the young musicians growing up in Sweden with hope to approach in punk and rock and his past creations and composes rely on the top as great achievements in Swedish music history as one of the main characters in the modern Swedish music industry. He has become a necessary symbol for the political, experimental and alternative rock star of modern music time and is the only true symbol for his time, unfortunately, internationally infamous.

Discography with Ebba Grön; ‘We’re Only in it For the Drugs’ (1979), Kärlek och Uppror (1981), Ebba Grön (1982), Ebba Grön 1978-1982 (1987). Imperiet; ‘Rasera’ (1984), ‘Imperiet’ (1984), ‘Blå Himlen Blues’, ‘2:a Augusti 1985’ (1985), ‘Synd’ (1986), ‘Imperiet’ (1988), ‘Tiggarens Tal’ (1988), Studio/Live (1988), ‘Kickar’ (1990). Peace, Love and Pitbulls; ‘Peace, Love & Pitbulls’ (1992), ‘Red Sonic Underwear’ (1994), ‘3’ (1997). Thåström; ‘ Thåström’ (1989), ‘Xplodera Mig’ (1991), Singoalla (1998), ‘Det är ni som e dom konstiga det är jag som e normal’ (1999), ‘Mannen Som Blev En Gris’ (2002), ‘Skebokvarnsvägen 209’ (2005) and with Sällskapet; ‘ Sällskapet’ (2007) and Thåström’s upcoming album ‘Kärlek För Dom’ (2009).

Review on  ‘Kärlek För Dom’ (Eng. Love For Those) will be posted in time with his Swedish release on March 13.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Amoeba Records, The Store of Records

This is not a commercial breakthrough of MT&T where I try to sell you a concept, an artist or a store. This is more of a personal recommendation to people in California, vistors or people of residency who love music and even more so love records. In a world of iTunes people have started to move away from the real concept of going out and but records which is one part of the modernization of our society.
If you still love buying records but you find them just a little bit to expensive and you've got tired of Virgins or Hot Topics poor selection of vinyls I would like you all to check out Amoeba Records. Amoeba is not an online store because that's not the purpose of Amoeba. Amoeba is one of the world largest record stores with over 1 million titles in store. They have recently started some what a home delivery but among the three existing stores in California they are all worth a visit. Their newest store is located on 6400 Sunset Boulevard and Vine St. in West Hollywood and will sweep you off your feet.
Me, lost and in love at Amoeba Records.

The originated stores in San Francisco and Berkley contain the same concept, used cd's to minimum prices, vinyl sections, a large number of hard-to-get movies and posters that we all thought was lost in time. With free parking you will get lost in the massive content and believe me, if you love music, you will love Amoeba Records.

Visit Amoeba Records for more information and remember the name.


Sunday, February 22, 2009

Truth about 'Dear John' by Loney Dear

I have to admit that I was surprised when I found out that Loney Dear was from Sweden. There's so much that's only one or two hours away from the town you were raised in that you have never heard of, this artist is one of those. Origianally from Jonkoping in Sweden, artist Emil Svanängen has received great recognition lately as he recently released a new album, 'Dear John'. 
Loney Dear is something between what I would call the new Swedish invasion. Between Timo Räisanen and Jens Lekman we find Loney Dear. Dear John is a typical Swedish Indie/Pop/Rock story that comes out quite good. In fact, third time becomes the charm. Even though the mourning, downy atmosphere to the album it holds up so much joy and charm. With the beautiful 'I Was Only Going' out I get captured in a visually told story. I recognize the growing up in my coastal Swedish hometown Oskarshamn and the summer nights of my teenage years where a song like this would define me and give the inspiration for greater things. It's hard to describe in words what 'Dear John' sounds like because even though it reminds of this and that it has an original label to it and that's why I fully agree with the attention around it.

What's seem to be the problem here is simply the positioning of the tracks, from a powerful start with 'Airport Surroundings' and 'Harsh Words' I tense the feeling of the album going downward in a melodic speed. He loses me and kind of slumbers of as the album reaches towards the end. When you take a look at the harmful songs composed as individual pieces the the production is beautiful, clean and very well accepted in my musical opinion. He closes the album rather mellow, rather soft and even though 'Violet' helps us to feel the tensions I remember how the opening totally struck me and that's where I'm lost. The album is though a promising album, that defines a new era of Swedish powerful musicians. Dear John is a great album and Loney Dear remains on my list. A truly amazing thing-piece that I choose to like very, very much.

Friday, February 20, 2009

What Came First, The Music or The Misery?

I love ‘High Fidelity’, it’s an amazing book in which the adaptation is one of few where the transformation between cultures and cities works and even though the book is a larger sense than the film as well as in a critics opinion as in its content, John Cusack characterization of the main figure Rob Gordon is really good and Jack Black with Todd Lousio totally makes the character generation perfect. But what High Fidelity deals with is one of the most interesting issues. The issue on the effects of popular music and how it controls us. In the film Rob asks the audience or himself (it’s an interpretation issue) about the differences in the question; ‘What came first, the music or the misery?’.

It’s a really interesting issue because if we take at our selves we have to admit that music is a ‘mood’ setter, it can make decisions for us a somewhat decide our emotional position. Take a break up for instant. We are dumped, in our saddest desperation we listen to deep music, with a sad mood in it. There is actually ‘Break Up Songs’ out there. Just take Ani DiFranco’s ‘You Had Time’ or Tom Petty’s ‘Free Fallin’ ’. After a while, we are still sad, it can be minutes, hours or maybe days. Is the music the factor that stirs our rebuilding process or is it just a time requiring process?


Rob keeps on saying ‘People worry about kids playing with guns, or watching violent videos, that some sort of culture violence will take them over. Nobody ever worries about their kids listening to thousands...of songs about heartbreak, rejection, pain, misery and loss’. And this is of course true, or in many cases it is like this, our parents have listened to music themselves so a kid listening to Nazareth’s ‘Love Hurts’ is just a flash back from their time, they seem so much more concerned of the 'out-of-the-universe' gangster rap that was on just 10 years ago.

Our parents like us doesn’t really realize that in emotional means, music, sad music has an even greater effect on us than most art forms, because it sets tensions and it helps us get through terrible days just as it helps us in setbacks or in times of inspiration. It’s both motivating and ‘de’-motivating if you can call it that.


Rob close with the question ‘Did I listen to pop music because I was miserable ‘Or was I miserable because I listened to pop music?’ The answer is through my personal study that it’s a little bit of both. We become miserable though music, if we want to be miserable. Also it decides our tensions and can help us be happy, just that we choose to put on a sad song in the case of misery and this proves the point that music is a powerful medium and that we all love it, just in different shapes and different portions.

To all of your readers, have a great 
Saturday Morning, Day and Evening.