What do you know about Mark Ronson? I read somewhere that he dj’d some celebrity wedding where he got so trashed he puked below the turntables. I oddly respect that dedication to both the beats and the booze. There was no quit in him. Besides that he’s had to put up with producing awful Lilly Allen (is there a more constantly disappointing WWTDD nipple slip out there than her? For fucks sake man put some clothes on) and constantly deal with his idiot sister and her coke whore of a girlfriend. I imagine family bbqs are a nightmare. Where am I going with this? Mark Ronson seems like a decent guy. Turns out he makes killer mixes too.
Ronson, after stringing together hits as producer, most notably on Amy Winehouse’s “Back to Black” and his collection of covers “Versions,” decided he wanted to celebrate his record collection…hence this album title. He set a goal and he knocked it out of the park. Ronson, a child of the 80’s, has made an an album that celebrates the “Me Decade” that molded him into the man/super producer he is today. Here on “Record Collection” Ronson creates a sonic time capsule with a little help from a solid array of guest artists that when cobbled together challenges Maxim Balloon in mixtape-esque baddassery. Blasphemy, I know. I’ve been raving about Maximum Balloon for months, but this in many ways is a better album. Hmm..perhaps I mean a better sampler. (speaking of “sampling” Ronson dated Daisy Lowe, who starred in the Esquire made video for Maximum Balloon’s Tiger”. I’ll take every chance i get to share that link)
This is like an “I Love the 80’s’” Mixtape….with out all those snarky unfunny asides from washed up celebs (who I’m sure are all featured on Hollywood Is Calling and comedians grasping at some tv time.). The only difference is instead of having to sit through “Safety Dance” for the 100th time (gladly!) you get to hear NEW 80’s songs. Music “inspired by” the 80’s is a far better way to describe it….and what better way to craft an homage to that “Greed is Good” decade than by getting Duran Duran and Boy Fucking George to sing on your album. Apparently Ronson has been working with Duran Duran for a year now working on their “great big comeback” album. If I allowed my brother on this Drop blast he’d be far too excited about this news. He’s always been way into Duran Duran…some might say to an unhealthy level. If you told him about this comeback album he’s surely retort “Comeback? But they never left!!!!” I’m still requesting a DNA test to verify that we’re twins. I will give him credit where credit is due though, Simon Lebon’s guest vocals on the title track truly shine. Maybe I should revisit the LeBon back catalog…
Right when I start having those dark thoughts the album shifts gears. That’s the beauty of this “Record Collection”. It offers up variety. At any point you can go from Boy George clamoring for love to Ghostface Killah throwing down classic verses married to celebratory Ronson produced beats,aided by vocal cues from Alex Greenwald of Phantom Planet. Not sold yet? How about Mr “Humdrum Town” himself Theophilus London. No? Record Collection also guests Spank Rock, DeAngelo, MDNR, Miike Snow, and Rose Elinor Dougall (of the Pipettes). Even Q-Tip gets in on the act on “”Bang Bang Bang””, jumping on in his Delorean and channeling his inner “Groove is in the Heart“. Yeah Yeah that was 1990..but I’ll always consider that Dee-Lite shit the swan song of the 80s.
Highlights: “Bang Bang Bang,” “The Bike Song,” “Record Collection,” “Somebody To Love Me”
Go check him out this week!
October 12th – Webster Hall – New York, NY (with Francis and the Lights)
October 14th – Club Nokia – Los Angeles, CA (with Miike Snow)
October 15th – The Wiltern – Los Angeles, CA (with Miike Snow)
Watch Ronson, Q-Tip, and MDNR perform Bang Bang Bang on Letterman last night here
“Any NY transplants who blew their noses the next day would instantly be taken back to Randall’s Island [Lollapalooza] circa 1994-1997.”
FYF: The Experience: With it looking like The Detour Fest will never be returning, I find myself becoming more and more protective of the FYF Fest. Much has been written about the logistical snafus of Saturday’s 7th Annual FYF Fest and I’m here to weigh in.. Common complaints about water prices, set delays, and ungodly long lines have probably done enough to scare people off for next year, and that’s a damn shame. Let me try and put things into perspective for some people who are losing their shit. For $20 I was able to see a slew of my current favorite artists on a beautiful day in Downtown LA, mere miles from my house. Sure the lines were long, but with a little logic and some help from your wingmen and women you could work through the hiccups. Someone in your group wants a cheese-steak and you want beer? Expecting to be able to do both is unrealistic at any festival - Break off into groups and pick a spot to meet back up at. Also, don’t expect to rely on your cell phones or texts. You gotta work these things old school style. Maybe FYF is catching more grief because it was 90 degrees and we were sitting in a glorified dirt farm. It made many people miserable, but it made me feel a sense of nostalgia for the old days of the traveling Lollapalooza. Any NY transplants who blew their noses the next day would instantly be taken back to Randall’s Island circa 1994-1997. If anything, I wish it were not an all ages show because the longest lines of the day were for the beer tents and the VIP Cha Cha tent, but I understand the kids need their music too.
“The best, most important rock album for years…No gimmicks, no postmodern guilt-trip bullshit, just punk rock space-cadet genius, Queens Of The Stone Age’s major label debut compromises nothing but still has mass appeal. The new rock royalty have come to claim their throne. Do not miss out on this.” – NME, September 2000
Yes it has already been ten years since the QOTSA blessed us with their acclaimed album”Rated R.” 10 years!? Really? Damn! “I grow old. I grow old. I shall wear the bottoms of my Jncos rolled.” To celebrate Homme and Co released a special two disc deluxe edition today. As I reflect on a lost decade’s worth of nicotine, Valium, Vicodin, marijuana, ecstasy, and alcohol I’ll use this as my soundtrack. You should do the same. If you haven’t heard this album before go and do yourself a favor and download it asap. The first disc includes the original album, and the second contains six B-sides, a few covers ( The Kinks!) and a recording of the band’s set at the 2000 Reading Festival. Homme is a bad-ass ginger who I would not want to fuck with at a festival. This Ginger? Not so much.
Highlights: “Feel Good Hit of the Summer,” “Better Living Through Chemistry,” “The Lost Art Of Keeping A Secret”
Your Friday just got that much better. Arcade Fire’s new album has leaked!
With their previous two albums Win Butler and Co. set the bar pretty damn high for their third album, “The Suburbs”. “Funeral” and “Neon Bible” were truly amazing albums that will always hold a special place in my iPod’s heart. “Funeral” was an absolute musical epiphany for me, and I used to melt off hangovers at Santa Monica beach set to the sound of “Neon Bible’s” church organs. I found no irony in the fact that the track that housed those ominous organs was titled “Intervention.” I’ve been talking up “The Suburbs” all summer. It is that one tent pole blockbuster that all the other drops have been leading up to. Knowing that I’ve already had an unhealthy amount of anticipation and set unfair expectations on this album–I tried to dial it down a bit…but The BBC just exasperated the situation this week with their pre-release quote. Speaking about “The Suburbs” the BBC said
“…It is their most thrillingly engrossing chapter yet; a complex, captivating work that, several cycles down the line, retains the magic and mystery of that first tentative encounter. You could call it their ‘OK Computer’. But it’s arguably better than that.”
Wow. Better than “OK Computer.” No pressure there. It’s stupid to even compare it to that. I’m not against comparisons by any means. I tend to compare stuff all of the time, but Radiohead’s “OK Computer” is far more different in tone and style than this (from what I can tell as I give it it’s first full listen). I’m up to track five and I’m already loving it. The frantic energy of the strings on “Empty Room” caught me off guard in the best way possible, especially after the “Free Fallin’ ” slow groove of the Petty-esque “Modern Man.” It’s certainly too early to tell if it will match or top “OK Computer”…but it sounds like classic Arcade Fire so far.
Highlights: “In the Month of May,” “Modern Man,” “Empty Room,” “Half Light I”
Read More from the BBC review here
Note: Arcade Fire will be live streaming their concert on 08/05 @ MSG with “very special guests.” My guesses: David Bowie..and Mark Messier. Check out the trailer here.