Category Archives: Music News

Focused specifically on what’s of interest in the world of Rock News.

Monday Morning Musical Musings

Monday Morning Musical Musings – or abbreviated, we could go with “Mo Mo Mu Mu?” I know it sounds stupid, but maybe it will grow on us?

Today a few thoughts on the Handsome Furs, Matt Mays, Y&T and a new Florida band: Innercoastal

I mentioned how much I liked The Handsome Furs a few weeks ago when they released a cool new tune “What About Us,” a catchy danceable song eerily reminiscent of the great alt rock I danced to back in the great Philly after hours club, The Revival 20 years ago.  Their brand new release is “Repatriated” and it is just as good.  I haven’t listened to the entire album yet, but that’s next.  If you like dance rock, check this Canadian duo out now. If your in the Midwest, Texas or California, you may be in luck, as they are touring those areas over the next two weeks.

Keeping with our Canadian theme, one of our contributors from North of the Border, Luc,  just got turned on to a band call Innercoastal. They are a new band from Central Florida who are playing around Orlando. According to Luc, “If you ever get a chance, LOOK THEM UP! I checked it out and liked the ska feel to their music.

I heard Matt Mays on the radio over the weekend and couldn’t help but think how under-rated this Canadian artist is. He’s had a handful of great well-written songs that never got a sniff of commercial airplay on the vast wasteland of US commercial radio.  He continues to put out great rock ‘n roll, despite the lack of attention. Check out “On the Hood,” “Travellin,” “Cocaine Cowgirl,” “City of Lakes” or the just released “Digital Eyes.” Good stuff with a unique sound.

OK – and this one has nothing to do with Canada, but it’s fresh in my feeble mind, and if I don’t write about it now, I’ll probably never remember.  Y&T’s “Summertime Girls.”  Is it the best crank down the windows, cruising to the beach, stereo blasting, sing along, feel good summer song ever?  I just love that song from the hard rockers from California (who still tour today). Lead singer Dave Meniketti never got his just due as an excellent rock voice. Here’s a copy of the video to keep you entertained for a few minutes (just ignore the horrible outfits the band is wearing – that was really the style 25 years ago): Summertime Girls

 

Radio Review – Hair Nation

Tractor Tunes are our 30 minute radio station reviews. So, grab a Schlitz, slide on your headphones, hop on the tractor, and decide if this one is for you…

Sirius XM’s Hair Nation, Channel 39

Hair Nation features “Hair Bands” from the 1980’s, in fact their slogan is “Vintage Rock From the Big Hair Eighties.”

It seems that every time I tune to this commercial-free Sirius XM station, I hear Bon Jovi, Motley Crue and Poison, but they do spread the wealth and dig a little deeper into the album cuts.  It’s definitely not non-stop “Blaze of Glory,” “Dr. Feelgood” and “Every Rose Has a Thorn.” You’ll notice in the playlist below that they played one of my favorite, and under-appreciated Poison tunes.  It’s a good mix between the hits and the rest of the stuff, but the songs really are hit or miss. 

In my opinion, there’s really not enough good hair band music to justify a dedicated full-time station. It would probably be better suited for a recurring weekend show, or special holiday weekend special.

  • Poison – Cry Tough
  • Dangerous Boys – Teasin’ and Pleasin’
  • White Snake – Here I Go Again
  • Badlands – My Last Time
  • Bon Jovi – I’ll Be There For You
  • Cinderella – Push Push
  • Motley Crue – Primal Stream
  • Faster Pussycat – Babylon

Stats:
Date: July, 2011

Music: 98%
Chatter: 2%
Commercials  0%

 

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Thursday Thoughts at the Trough

Just a few random thoughts:

  • In an interview earlier this week with Eric James of The Last Royals, be mentioned Arcade Fire being the band at the top of their game right now.  Hard to argue with that. I love the band and was happy to see them win the Grammy for Album of the Year for their album Suburbs earlier this year.  Although Suburbs is indeed Grammy worthy. I think their 2008 release Neon Bible is better yet.  For fans of the band, SiriusXM’s and the band are sponsoring a free show in Montreal on September 22nd.  If you are not in the area, the show will also be broadcast live.
  • Say It Isn’t So – Van Halen is really planning a tour and new album with David Lee Roth, and without Michael Anthony? No way this turns out good. I’m a big fan of reunion tours, but this one just seems destined for disaster.
  • Former Queens of the Stone Age bassist Nick Oliveri was charged with four felonies after a fight with his ex-girlfriend turned into a four-hour standoff with police. Oliveri was holed-up with his ex-girlfriend inside his apartment. When the 39 year-old was taken into custody, the police found a full-loaded rifle along with cocaine and meth-amphetamines. Not smart – it’s getting easy to understand why he was tossed from the band. He’s looking at 15 years in prison.
  • You’ve heard us mention The Dodos a duo out of San Francisco and their unique version of rock and roll. Well, they’re offering free tickets and downloads at their website.  Check it out at: The Dodo’s 
  • One of our Twitter followers sent us a link to listen to some new music from a Finnish band: Siberian Jay. It’s a little raw and under-produced, but there’s lots of potential there. Check it out, and thanks to FooFightHans for the suggestion. Follow us at Twitter: rarasfarm or Like us on Facebook to keep in touch and get immediate site updates.

 

Monday Night on the Farm – Random Musings

Random Thoughts on a Monday evening.

Today is the 50th Birthday for both Richard Allan Ream and for David Howell Evans.  If you don’t recognize the names, keep on reading…

Cage the Elephant’s “Around My Head” is my favorite song right now. I’ve liked most of their music the past few years, but this one is their best yet.  They are playing on Jay Leno’s Tonight Show tonight (Tuesday, August 9th).  Not sure what they’ll be playing, but you know what my vote will be for.

My Sister-In-Law turned me onto her cousin’s band, Walk The Moon. They made a big showing at Lollapalooza in Chicago, playing three shows over the weekend.  Check out this song, and it’s quirky video on Youtube and see if you can’t get the lyrics out of your head.  Fun Stuff: Walk The Moon’s” Anna Sun” 

I realize that it’s a few years old now, but Mother Mother’s “Hayloft” is pretty damn fun. Sort of like the strange spawn if The Red Hot Chili Peppers and B-52’s had a little baby band.

The birthday boys? You’d know them better as the drummer from Poison and guitarist from U2. Happy Birthday to Rikki Rocket and The Edge!

 

HOB – Orlando Review

The House of Blues – Orlando

This venue located in Downtown Disney became my home away from home in 2009. That summer, I had the chance to see four alternative rock concerts. The wide variety of bands that performed at this venue led to a wide variety of experiences.

The sound quality in this venue is excellent! The voices of the artists are easy to hear and the bass is at perfect volume to where you feel it throughout your body. During changes in acts the venue plays current hits to keep the audience entertained.

There are a few different options for viewing the shows at the two story House of Blues. The upper floor tends to be more VIP seating with nice cushioned booths in a balcony jutting out towards the stage. There is also general admission standing room upstairs and bar seating – for those who are trying to escape the crowds and wish to listen as opposed to watch the show. Downstairs is usually very crowded and depending on the artists performing can become very aggressive. I strongly advise wearing close-toed shoes! The area in front of the stage known as the “pit” is the most crowded of the entire venue, this is an all standing section and is the best way to get close to the stage. Mosh pitting, fighting, and pushing generally take place in the pit so beware!

One of the my favorite aspects of the venue is how many opportunities you have to bond with the bands… many bands chose to stand outside the venue after shows and sign autographs, many also stand at their souvenir tables before they perform. I had a chance to see Boys Like Girls and Parachute at the HOB-Orlando and both lead singers performed their last song in the middle of the pit and stayed around to mix with their fans afterwards.

Fun Facts:

  • Two large bars around the perimeter of the venue. Friendly staff and cups of water are readily available for… free!
  • Tickets can be purchased online, at the box office (no service charge), or day of show if the show isn’t sold out.
  • The bathrooms are covered in band stickers and tend to be small and overcrowded – with the mayhem taking place in the bathroom there is a women or man (depending on what bathroom you are in) sitting by the door offering warm cloths to dry your hands, perfume to freshen up, tooth paste, or an abundance of other items – all for a hope of a tip.
  • Parking is free and within a short distance of the venue, There is a large lot for all of Downtown Disney so depending on the night and attractions some nights are more difficult to park then others.
  • No smoking is allowed inside the venue.
  • Bouncers are placed strategically around the venue and are extremely quick to break up any fights and very helpful in helping people escape the crowds and mosh pits – generally very friendly people.

Bottom Line: This venue will give you an up close and personal experience with some of your favorite bands.

Random thoughts – On the way to DC

Just some random thoughts on a Sunday night:

As I hear more about the tragic news out of Norway, I can’t help thinking of the lyrics to Foster the People’s “Pumped Up Kicks. ” I realize that song probably is a glimpse into some young guys struggles fitting in with society vs. the nut case in Norway. Nonetheless, my mind keeps going there…

Lots of talk about the budget issues in the US gets me thinking about the song “Money.” I knew that Barrett Strong recorded it originally back in 1959, and I have the 45 to prove it:)  But, so many other great versions have come along. Out of curiosity, I looked at Wikipedia and they list over 70 single versions of the classic.  The Who, Beatles and Zeppelin all recorded versions you’ve probably heard. My favorite: The Flying Lizards. Enjoy! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3_iQZiVD_zA&feature=related

I fly out of DC Wednesday and miss by a few hours a chance to see the Eels at the iconic 930 club. If you live in the area, check out the show – it should be a real Hootenany.

So, with Amy Winehouse’s death, there’s more attention to this phenomenon where famous musicians die at the age of 27. Listen to the list of names: Brian Jones (Rolling Stones), Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison, Ron Pigpen McKernan (Grateful Dead), Kurt Kobain and now Amy. And, there are a bunch more only slightly less famous. Lesson for you young rockers: lay off the drugs and alcohol(at least until your 28th birthday).

This weekend I got the new EP from the Last Royals in preparation for a feature on the talented new band from New York. Great stuff – check it out at thelastroyals.com

Finally. We’ve added all of the country’s largest cities to our “On The Road” Section of the website.  Now we need your help fleshing out the info for your fellow rockers. You can find the link at the top of this page, or get there by clicking here: ON THE ROAD.

Radio Review – Underground Garage

Tractor Tunes are our 30 minute radio station reviews. So, grab a PBR, slide on your headphones, hop on the tractor, and decide if this one is for you…

Sirius XM’s Underground Garage, Channel 21

Another journey into one of Sirius XM’s commercial-free music channels.  This station is just a little bit different than anything I’ve heard anywhere else; different in a good way. They describe their music as “The Coolest Rock and Roll Records Ever Made.” HOnestly – it is pretty damn cool stuff.

They dig deep into their music library and constantly unearth cool garage bands we never hear anywhere else, and toss in some deep cuts from more popular bands, as you see below with the Kinks. They also feature newer tunes, such as the ones from Social D and Joey Ramone in the sample below.

Just look at the diversity of artists to see how interesting this station is.

All of the DJ’s truly add to the experience. On this Saturday morning it was Bill Kelly behind the microphone, and he shared interesting and often little-known factoids about each song and artist – definitely high value-add information!

  • New York City – Joey Ramone 
  • Dedicated Follower of Fashion – Kinks 
  • Alligator – Foxboro Hot Tubs 
  • Social Distortion – Machine Gun Blues 
  • Sparklers – Ain’t No Friend of Mine
  • Pop – Down on the Boulevard
  • Otis Redding – That’s How Strong my Love is
  • Grip Weeds – Ready and Waiting
  • Smithereens – Rings on her Fingers

Stats:
Date: 7/9/11
Music: 95%

Chatter: 5%
Commercials  0%

Bonus Tip: Breakfast with the Beatles on Sundays at 9AM.


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Gabba Gabba Hey from the Grave

Heard Joey Ramones’ new release “New York City” the other day. It’s a cool tune reminiscent of late Ramones stuff, and I think we’ll see it become an anthem of sorts for the Big Apple – if it ever gets any airplay, and that’s a big “if.”. This one actually has the potential to be a hit. Interesting stuff considering Joey died more than 10 years ago. Heard it twice on Sirius XM’s, Little Steven’s Underground Garage in the past few days, but can’t find it on the web.  If I recall correctly, this album has been tied up in legal proceedings for about  five years. Sure, hope it sees the light of day.

Found a very cool live Foo Fighters song on Youtube. This one features the Foo’s drummer Taylor Hawkins getting behind the mike and stepping out in front of the band, while Roger Taylor slides into his seat behind the drums, and Brian May joins them on-stage for a cover of Queen’s “Tie Your Mother Down.” It absolutely rocks, and would have made Freddie proud. Check it out here!  I’ve seen the Foo Fighters a few times, and truly believe Taylor could someday front his own band similar to the leap Dave Grohl took after Nirvana.

My current favorite new tune is “Crystal Vases” by The Last Royals. They’re a new duo out of Brooklyn New York, and this first tune is a killer.  If you live around Brooklyn, check them out at Pete’s Candy Store on July 25th. If you don’t live around New York, you are out of luck, as nothing else is planned at this time.