Austin, TX's Mike and The Moonpies have come a long way from playing the dancehalls of their native Texas. On their new LP, Cheap Silver and Solid Country Gold, the quintet is leaving the honky-tonk behind and exploring the sounds of smoothed out 70's Country with the help of their friends the London Philharmonic Orchestra. Recorded at the famed Abbey Road Studios, Cheap Silver is bringing countrypolitan "back" in a big way, and the results are a timeless listen that is also one of the years best.
PLUS! Milwaukee's Buffalo Gospel is serving up the rugged and road-tested Country and Americana that fans of artists like Jason Isbell and Sturgill Simpson are sure to love.
Hot off a tour with Appalachian vocal trio Mountain Man (including a stop at this years Newport Folk Festival), Alexandra Sauser-Monnig didn’t waste any time hitting the road again, but this time in support of debut album as Daughter of Swords.
For their 15th album (and 2nd this year), Australia’s King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard take yet another musical turn, this time into THRASH METAL. Infest The Rat’s Nest has everything: HUGE CRUSHING RIFFS! THUNDERING DRUMS! SCI-FI ECO-DIMENSIONAL HORROR! It even has SATAN!
But it’s that second-to-last point that’s so important. Somehow, impossibly, King Gizzard has made a metal album that not only sounds timeless but speaks to the horrors we’re all going to face as man-made climate change runs its course. Metal enthusiast Casey Rae (William Burroughs and The Cult Of Rock ‘N’ Roll, Dead To Me) joins us as we follow King Gizzard down the highway towards oblivion on an all-new episode of Discologist!
On their seventh album (and first in five years) The Hold Steady isn’t so much “We’re BACK mother****ers!” as they are “Alright. Alright. Alllllright”-ing their way back into our hearts.
Thrashing Thru The Passion finds the band sporting a slightly looser and expanded sound (horns!) and songwriter Craig Finn’s druggy, party-filled universe, a little older, a little beat down, but no less full of life. Join us as we dig into all of the good, bad, and magical highs found on the “return” of one of America’s most celebrated bands.
Sleepwalkers 2014 LP Greenwood Shade was, and remains, one of our favorites of the past few years. Finally five years later their follow up, Ages, is here and it was well worth the wait. While Shade wore its shagginess on its sleeve, Ages sees brothers Michael and Austin York and co-conspirator Alex DeJong polishing up the edges and delivering the power-pop masterpiece we deserve just when we need it the most. Get ready to experience a record that surprises at every turn as Kevin and Eduardo go IN on this instant classic.
PLUS! LA supergroup Grand Canyon has a new EP out, and fans of Tom Petty, Fleetwood Mac, and [checks notes] Guns N’ Roses (?) are going to want to check them out. We’ve got their latest single “Yesterday’s News” to get you acquainted.
Van Halen’s 5150 was a turning point for the legendary party rockers for more than one reason. The replacing of original front man David Lee Roth with rocker Sammy Hagar was what was driving headlines, but the real news was in the music. Revved up, radio-friendly, and raring to go, this “new” Van Halen supplemented often questionable machismo with synths, honest-to-god pop hooks, and, most radically: Feelings.
Washington Post Pop Critic Chris Richards and Broke Royals’ Philip Basnight are joining us as we reconsider one of the most divisive albums of Van Halen’s career, reveal it’s secrets, and more.
From the album cover right down to the final spastic notes, Van Halen's (Van Hagar's?) 5150 is a master class on everything thing that it took to be trashy, cheezy and borderline awful in the 80's. It also somehow they managed to pull it all together despite itself record that, while itdemands your devil horns in the air despite it's assy shell.
For longtime fans of the band, this record was pretty much the end. David Lee Roth hit the road after 1984, and the news that the badn would carry on without him infuriated said fans, espesically when they found out who with.
For folks like me though, who had barely experienced the Van Halen of old, this newer, sleeker Van Hagar was just what the doctor ordered. Sammy Hagar who was familiar to anyone who had MTV at the time thanks to his megahit "I Can't Drive 55" brought a sort of California sleaze to the band that was a sharp contrast to David Lee Roth's Vegas showmanship.
The band sounded greasier than it ever had before. Sure, the record had its future-classic-bombs like "Love Walks In" (which is apparently about aliens...not metaphorical aliens but ACTUAL aliens) and "Why Can't This Be Love". But it also gave the world some absolutely EPIC guitar workouts on songs like "Good Enough", "Best of Both Worlds" and "Get Up" and arguably, thanks to Eddie Van Halens newly invented Floyd Rose locking tremelo system, some of the most innovative work of the bands career.
So is it bad? Oh hell yes it's bad. But it's bad in the very best ways. An album like this takes you right back to that point in your life where music, good or bad, was just beginning to get awesome for you. All the clichés that you'd later pick out, all the horrible cringe worthy lyrics, they just didn't matter. All that mattered was that Van Halen was blasting out of you speakers, scaring the neighbors and turning you into a much cooler person, which is about all you could really ask for from rock and roll those days. All you could ask for, and all you needed.