Rock/Pop/Etc.

CD Review: Peter Case – THE CASE FILES

Peter Case - THE CASE FILES | ©2011 Alive Records

Distributor: Alive Records Suggested Retail Price: $13.53 It’s hard to review a compilation of demos, outtakes, live tracks and other rarities from a particular artist, because often times that material was never intended for consumer release. Yet, when a solo artist reaches three decades mark, it is time to start digging into the archives for the die-hard fans and Peter Case has done that with THE CASE FILES. While his material from the days as frontman of the short-lived 1980s rock outfit The Plimsouls was angst filled rock and roll the entire way, Case has spent the majority of his […]Read On »

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CD Review: Lady Gaga – BORN THIS WAY

Lady Gaga - BORN THIS WAY | ©2011 Interscope Records

Distributor: Interscope Suggested Retail Price: $12.99 You have to hand it to Lady Gaga. She loves to let her freak flag fly, and she’s done such an amazing job of cultivating this performance-art persona, that she’s become more famous for what she wears, rather than what she’s actually singing. That of course is the big dichotomy her career is facing. She’s clearly pushed the envelope as far as she can with her costumes, and now, she really needs to start bringing the attention back to the fact that she’s not that bad a singer and a pretty accomplished songwriter (even […]Read On »

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CD Review: The Cars – MOVE LIKE THIS

The Cars - MOVE LIKE THIS | ©2011 Hear Music

Distributor: Hear Music Suggested Retail Price: $11.88 The music The Cars produced in their late ‘70s and 1980s run was unparalleled. From the New Wave textures of “Shake It Up” and “My Best Friend’s Girl” to the non-stop hit-palooza of 1984’s HEARTBEAT CITY that featured a long string of hits including “Magic,” “You Might Think,” and “Drive.” However, after 1987’s incredibly disappointing DOOR TO DOOR album, the band decided to call it quits and leave its legacy at six studio albums. Over the years, frontman Ric Ocasek released a steady stream of solo records, with most of them containing at […]Read On »

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Song Reviews: AMERICAN IDOL – TOP 4 SEASON 10 album

AMERICAN IDOL: The Final 4: Haley Reinhart, Scotty McCreery, James Durbin and Lauren Alaina | ©2011 Fox/Michael Becker

After last night’s strange episode of AMERICAN IDOL – Season 10, where the Top 4 contestants sang two songs apiece (one that inspires, the other from the Jerry Leiber/Mike Stoller songbook), it was clear the judges are still all over the map when it comes to criticism and what an IDOL should exactly be (okay, one map, everyone is great EXCEPT Haley). While James Durbin, Lauren Alaina and Scotty McCreery have gotten pretty much a free ride to the Top 4 with nary a critique (especially when they blow hard), Haley Reinhart has had to claw her way into her […]Read On »

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CD Review: Stevie Nicks – IN YOUR DREAMS

Stevie Nicks - IN YOUR DREAMS | ©2011 Reprise Records

Distributor: Reprise Records Suggested Retail Price: $12.99 One of the most fascinating aspects about singer-songwriter Stevie Nicks is how she not has masterfully managed to be both a co-frontperson for the band Fleetwood Mac and also have an equally successful solo career, with each sounding unique unto themselves. Her work with Mac and former lover/partner/bandmate Lindsey Buckingham was seeped in emotional angst, music that was a pop/rock hybrid elevated by Buckingam’s skills as a guitarist and sometimes producer for the band. Her solo stuff leaned more in the rock arena. It was always Nicks at its heart, but she always […]Read On »

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TV Review: AMERICAN IDOL – Season 10 – “The Top 6 Perform”

AMERICAN IDOL: The Final 6: L-R: Haley Reinhart, Scotty McCreery, James Durbin, Lauren Alaina, Casey Abrams and Jacob Lusk | ©2011 Fox/Michael Becker

Cast: Ryan Seacrest, Jennifer Lopez, Steven Tyler, Randy Jackson Network: Fox, airs Wednesdays and Thursdays Original Airdate: April 27, 2011 And then there were six on the world’s greatest karaoke competition, AMERICAN IDOL. After losing two men in a row, will the last females remaining continue to win over the hearts of America enough to stick around? We’ll see. And once again we are stuck doing just one performer for the entire night – Carole King. While the pop legend has a great catalog, why pigeonhole them and the audience into hearing all these songs? I got it that you […]Read On »

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Album Review: Foo Fighters – MEDIUM RARE (Record Day 2011 Exclusive)

Foo Fighters - MEDIUM RARE | ©2011 RCA

Distributor: RCA Suggested Retail Price: $16.99 With the Foo Fighters newest album WASTING LIGHT now in stores, it’s nice to see the band also support local record stores with Record Store Day 2011 and the exclusive release MEDIUM RARE. Essentially a compilation of various cover songs the Foo Fighters have done throughout their career (studio and live tracks), the release was a coveted item for collectors and is now netting as high as $60.00 from some unscrupulous resellers. MEDIUM RARE really proves how versatile the band is as musicians and for David Grohl as a singer. In many ways, the […]Read On »

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Single Review: THE CARS – “Sad Song” 7 inch (Record Day 2011 Exclusive)

The Cars - "Sad Song" 7 inch single | ©2011 Concord/Hear Music

Distributor: Concord/Hear Music Suggested Retail Price: $4.99 It’s fitting that Record Store Day 2011 would include a 7 inch single from 1980s band The Cars who have reunited for the first time since 1988. They debut two new songs that are off their new album MOVE LIKE THIS due out May 10 and it feels like it’s the 1980s all over again. Sure, downloading tunes is easier, but to actually get an A and B side in a nifty sleeve reminds us why going to record stores is such a long lost tactile art in the digital age. “Sad Song” […]Read On »

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Single Review: MICHAEL JACKSON – “Behind the Mask” 7 inch (Record Day 2011 Exclusive)

Michael Jackson - "Behind the Mask" 7 inch single | ©2011 Sony

Distributor: Sony Suggested Retail Price: $6.99 Michael Jackson mania may finally be over. After lackluster sales for his 2010 posthumous release MICHAEL, the fervor following his death (and a resurgence of his old music) didn’t translate into sales for the hodge podge of leftover tunes from his vaults. Some claimed there was too much studio work done to the demos he left behind, others claimed he wasn’t singing on all the tracks. I will say, that there were at least a few songs on the disc that were damn good, and probably should not have stayed in the vault as […]Read On »

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Music Review: Bruce Springsteen – “Gotta Get That Feeling”/“Racing in the Street” 10 inch single (Record Store Day 2011 Exclusive)

Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band -"Gotta Get This Feeling"/"Racing in the Street" ('78) | ©2011 Columbia

Distributor: Columbia Records Suggested Retail Price: $6.99 After the exceptional box set THE PROMISE which provided not only a remastered version of DARKNESS ON THE EDGE OF TOWN, but also through in a bonus disc dubbed THE PROMISE of 21 additional tracks that were shelved in favor of a different approach to what eventually became DARKNESS, now we get a post-script to that side project. Springsteen and his E Street Band are releasing a DVD and Blu-ray on the making of DARKNESS and have culled two live cuts for this special Record Day 2011 exclusive. Eschewing a traditional 7 inch […]Read On »

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