Neil Young's 2000 summer tour brought forth Road Rock, Vol. 1, a live album recorded on September 19 and 20 at the Red Rocks concert venue in Denver. The eight-song set features one previously unreleased track "Fool for Your Love"; other highlights include an 18-minute version of "Cowgirl in the Sand" and a duet with the Pretenders' Chrissie Hynde on Bob Dylan's "All Along the Watchtower." (The Pretenders served as opening act for several of the dates on Young's Music in Head tour.) Road Rock, Vol. 1 also includes rarely performed songs resurrected for the tour, including "Walk On," "Words," and "Motorcyle Mama" from his 1978 album Comes a Time. The album is being credited to "Neil Young Friends and Relatives," most likely a reference to the fact that his wife Pegi and sister Astrid perform as backup vocalists in the group, which also includes longtime associate Ben Keith on steel guitar, Booker T. and the MGs and Blues Brothers bassist Donald "Duck" Dunn, soul legend Spooner Oldham on keyboards, and session drummer Jim Keltner.
"Goth" was a much maligned '80s genre, often deserved thanks to overtly gloomy pretentiousness, but just as often artistic, dark, bracing music. In addition to those outfits that still keep it going, this double CD is smart enough to include some of the long forgotten, unsung English practitioners who left behind stunning moments, folks such as UK Decay, Theatre of Hate, Play Dead and even Southern Death Cult (who became internationally famous a few years later when they changed their name from Death Cult to the Cult). One imagines Cleopatra couldn't get the rights to include such seminal bands as the Cure or Sisters of Mercy, but those groups don't need this kind of introduction, and the omission of the March Violets aside, this is an intelligently selected guide.
Focusing on the '80s, Cleopatra continues to document the history of gothic rock with this two-CD set. Progressing through the discs, the tracks get basically more obscure. Starting off is the pop-goth of the Cult ("Spirit Walker," similar to the Skeleton Family track), then on to the odd, desert goth of Theatre of Hate's "Do You Believe in the Westworld." Fields of Nephilim adds riff-rock goth (&"Blue Water"). With sound ready to open for Psychedelic Furs or Modern English is March Violets. Truly unique is the bouncy, glam goth of Danielle Dax' "Yummer Yummer Man." The obligatory track of '80's goth kings, Bauhaus, is "Passion of Lovers." Other big names in the genre found here include Christian Death, New Model Army, Red Lorry Yellow Lorry, Gene Loves Jezebel and Alien Sex Fiend. Lesser known is a catchy cut from Sexbeat, "Sweat." Not that it is often that I see a goth move enough to sweat, but a good place to start is goth dance-rock from a Specimen 12-inch mix.
Gothic Rock Volume 2: 80's Into 90's is the second of a trio of double-disc Gothic Rock compilations produced by Cleopatra Records. The album also features an article on the development of the Gothic Rock movement by Mick Mercer. The album features the likes of Bauhaus, Christian Death, Play Dead, Red Lorry Yellow Lorry, The March Violets, Skeletal Family, and many more.
Britain's Got Talent stars The Jive Aces are the UK's # 1 jive and swing band. Renowned for their high energy show, they put Simon Cowell "in a really good mood" and were the first band to reach the BGT semi-finals. They've headlined The Albert Hall, played 30 countries, worked with Van Morrison and played for The Queen. This latest album, the band’s 12th, marks the 20th Anniversary of this line up. "Diggin' The Roots Vol. 1: Rockin' Rhythm & Blues” is inspired by the early influences that generated that initial enthusiasm and lit the flame that started the Jive Aces off on their musical journey. Such influences include Big Joe Turner, Louis Jordan, Ruth Brown and the great Louis Prima who was the single biggest influence on the band.
Thirteen hours of unreleased and ultra-rare music. The Eternal Myth Revealed is a 14 disc docu-biography of Ra's life and career, from his birth in 1914 up to 1959. In addition to his own music, it includes music he was influenced by, and a lot of stuff he may or may not have had a hand in as arranger, vocal coach, pianist or something else. Sun Ra's output was as prolific as Ellington's, and discographers have had nightmares and arguments attempting to document it accurately.
Pebbles is an extensive series of compilation albums in both LP and CD formats that have been issued on several record labels, though mostly by AIP. Together with the companion Highs in the Mid-Sixties series, the Pebbles series made available over 800 obscure, mostly American "Original Punk Rock" songs recorded in the mid-1960s - primarily known today as the garage rock and psychedelic rock genres - that were previously known only to a handful of collectors. In 2007, the release of the Pebbles, Volume 11: Northern California CD marked the final album in the Pebbles series (curiously, Vol. 12 had been issued in 1999)…