I can picture myself buying this record as a kid in the sixties and telling my conservative parents: "No, No Mom it's not that hippy music! I swear, just look at the album cover. It's country music." The album cover belies nothing but one spin of the record gives it all away.
From the jump 'Artificial Energy' sounds like it could have been a Beatles song and 'Goin' Back' is a mesmerizing and dizzying track. And throughout the record, ... read more
The name Curtis Mayfield is just about synonymous with politically charged R&B and soul at this point. He would establish this primarily during the 70's after leaving the Impressions behind to launch a solo career. And while the Impressions seem like nothing more than a light-hearted pop group when compared to Mayfield's solo career, Mayfield's activist mentality is far from dormant in his work with the ... read more
8 jazz improvisers get together and see if they can make their instruments sound like weapons, they succeed. The disorienting and at times, frightening chaos found on the titular track somehow seems to be a more devastating critique of the Vietnam era than Bob Dylan or Phil Ochs could ever hope to produce.
The parallels to the coming No Wave movement, as well as noise rock in general, are almost to obvious to point out. But, the sheer ... read more
A lot of the archetypal early rock n' roll is hard to admire in the modern day. What was edgy then is sometimes conservative to the point of boredom nowadays. But the garage protopunk of the Sonics still sounds noisey and visceral even in the modern day.
Gerry Roslie's gritty vocals lead a vicious assault on your ears accompanied by a blaring saxophone and blaring guitar solos. And the lyrical content was enough to make conservative parents ... read more
There really is no one like Rahsaan Roland Kirk. Kirk became blind at a young age and started travelling with rhythm and blues bands in his early teens. He made a name for himself by playing multiple instruments at once. And by that, I don't mean guitar and harmonica a la folk singers, I mean he played multiple horns at once, often in other-worldly sounding harmonies. This is one of Kirk's better albums but missing from it is the political rants ... read more