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Now listening to:
Blue Rodeo - Love and Understanding

Upcoming reviews:
Bohren & der Club of Gore - Beileid
Bonnie Prince Billy - Best Troubadour
The Boxer Rebellion - Promises

Upcoming releases:
10/08 Ane Brun - Live at Berwaldhallen
17/08 Death Cab for Cutie - Thank You for Today
17/08 Great Lake Swimmers - Waves, The Wake
17/08 Kovacs - Cheap Smell
24/08 Interpol - Marauder
31/08 Sophie Hunger - Molecules
07/09 Paul McCartney - Egypt Station
14/09 Low - Double Negative
21/09 Villagers - Art of Pretending to Swim
21/09 Christine and the Queens - Chris
28/09 Nick Cave - Distant Sky
28/09 Tom Petty - An American Treasure
12/10 Thomas Dybdahl - All These Things

Latest buys/gifts:
The Breeders - Do You Love Me Now
The Breeders - Cannonball
Black Atlantic - Send This Home
Big Joe Williams - Blues Masters
Alamo Race Track - Live

Upcoming shows:
Broeder Dieleman [Walhalla, Rotterdam]
Frank Turner [013, Tilburg]
Saint Agnes [V11, Rotterdam]
Het Zesde Metaal [Gebouw-T, Bergen op Zoom]

Recently visited shows:
Nine Inch Nails, Black Moth Super Rainbow
Flip & de Noormannen
Benjamin Clementine

9 of my personal favorites:
Anywhen - The Opiates
Afghan Whigs - Gentlemen
Deep Purple - Made in Japan
Ane Brun - My Temporary Dive
Madrugada - The Deep End
Kashmir - No Balance Palace
Noir Desir - Des Visages des Figures
Band of Horses - Cease to Begin
Black Atlantic - Darkling, I Listen

Currently reading:
De Beste Muziek Verhalen van 1945 tot Nu
samengesteld en ingeleid door Leon Verdonschot

Best Kept Secret Festival
Breda Barst
Haldern Pop Festival
Naked Song Festival
Totaalfestival Bladel
3 voor 12 luisterpaal

Willem II, Den Bosch
Roepaen, Ottersum
Mezz, Breda
013, Tilburg
Effenaar, Eindhoven
Rotown, Rotterdam

Complete CD list
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Blue Rodeo
Diamond Mine

posted [31.07.2018]
released [1989]
[sub]genre: Canadiana



If The Band and Neil Young were refused competing, Blue Rodeo may only be tailgazing Cowboy Junkies at the biggest name in Canadian country rock election. In business for over 30 years, having recorded 15 full-length albums, sold over 4 million records and won 11 Juno awards, Blue Rodeo earned that 2012 spot in the Canadian Music Hall of Fame. Strangely enough their Wikipedia page hasn't that much to tell. Formed in 1984 by highschool friends Cuddy and Keelor, the band soon gained a following in the Toronto area. Not just fans but also friends. As a result Keelor's then girlfriend appeared in the music video Try that rocketed to no 1. Thus expectations were high on Blue Rodeo's second release Diamond Mine. Remember it's late 80s. Oversized selfpity ("can't stand the sight of myself, lying in bed all day with the curtains drawn") in the piano ballads House of Dreams and Girl of Mine affirm the timeframe. Bob Wiseman's intentions on adding jazzy interludes (track 1, 4, 9) are unclear. But apart from that Cuddy and Keelor show great songwriting craftmanship. Socially engaged and politically enraged ("I hope that I never find what you call good conscience or peace of mind; as another man dies for God and country"), the boys aren't dodging a fucked up romance ("well I thought she was mine, but she was just passing time"). A great psychedelic live feel on the title track, a set of sing-a-longs with anthemic ambitions and a song that could've been Steve Earle writing (One Day) complete the disc. With the ballads and interludes in the bin an 11 or 12 track wrap up would've nailed it just right.
  1. Swells
  2. God and Country
  3. How Long
  4. Blues Piano
  5. Love and Understanding
  6. Girl of Mine
  7. Diamond Mine
  8. Now and Forever
  9. Percussive Piano
  10. House of Dreams
  11. Nice Try
  12. Fall in Line
  13. One Day
  14. Florida
  15. Fuse
  16. The Ballad of the Dime Store Greaser and the Blonde Mona Lisa

Scrapper Blackwell
Hard Time Blues

posted [08.04.2018]
released [2002]
[sub]genre: chicago and piedmont blues



Though I had my share of blues, I'm still pretty new to the genre. In the nineties BB King, John Lee Hooker, Eric Clapton and Gary Moore took a popularized form to mainstream radio. But it wasn't until Robert Johnson's myth crossed my road that I learned about the pre-war blues founding fathers and mothers: Blind Lemon Jefferson, Charley Patton, Leadbelly, Robert Johnson, Son House, Tampa Red, Big Bill Broonzy and Bessie Smith, but Scrapper Blackwell isn't on any of these lists. Blackwell recorded his main body of work between 1928 en 1935 as a solo artist, but also as part of a duo with pianist Leroy Carr. Their love for music and moonshine brought Blackwell and Carr together. One liquor producing bootlegger during the prohibition and the other liquor lover in search of a guitar player. Their first joint effort How Long, How Long Blues, re-recorded as How Long Has That Evening Train Been Gone? became the biggest nationwide blues hit in 1928. And from there Blackwel was on top of the charts for merely seven years. With Carr Blackwell set the standard for every piano/guitar blues combination throughout the 30s. Blackwell, a contemporary of Robert Johnson, witnessed his Kokomo Blues being reworked by Kokomo Arnold into Original Old Kokomo Blues that subsequently got reworked by Johnson into Sweet Home Chicago. And in modern times Eric Clapton covered his version of Bessie Smith's Nobody Knows You When You're Down and Out almost note for note. Blackwell was known for being withdrawn and hard to work with. A dispute over songwriting credits caused the end of Carr and Blackwell's recording carreer. Both musicians left the studio early 1935 and Carr died 2 months later due to heavy drinking. Blackwell recorded an ode to his accomplice titled My Old Pal Blues, to disappear from the music scene not much after. Scrapper Blackwell played electric guitar way before it was invented. Just listen to the punchy playing on Barrelhouse Woman. Isn't it strange nobody really remembers him these days?
  1. Trouble Blues
  2. Blue Day Blues
  3. Penal Farm Blues
  4. Hard Time Blues
  5. Back Door Blues
  6. Kokomo Blues
  7. Down South Blues
  8. Trouble Blues
  9. How Long Has That Evening Train Been Gone?
  10. I Believe I'll Make A Change
  11. Big Four Blues
  12. It's Too Short
  13. Midnight Hour Blues
  14. Mean Mistreater Mama
  15. Blues Night Blues
  16. Barrelhouse Woman
  17. Rocks In My Bed
  18. Tight Time Blues


posted [08.02.2018]
released [2004]
[sub]genre: progressive pop



It was my good friend Peter who introduced me to progressive rock music. We visited shows of bands like IQ, Spock's Beard, Riverside, Flower Kings and Porcupine Tree amongst others. These bands are part of the so called retro-prog movement and though rooted in predecessors (not really progressive in that way), they blend in other genres - preferable metal - without hesitation. The result may be lengthy and may contain complex structures and obscure lyrics, but is often far more accessible than symphonic, psychedelic and classic progressive rock. Porcupine Tree appealed to me most and I saw quite a few shows between 2000 and 2007. Frontman Steven Wilson suffers from excessive musical ideas, encouraged by like minded musicians he meets along his journey. Aviv Geffen, Isrealic musician, protest singer and political activist is one of them. Geffen who admired the work of Porcupine Tree invited the band to come over and play Israel in 2000. In pursue of an international carreer Geffen suggests a collaboration, which Wilson agreed to. The project was named Blackfield and the two probably never expected it to last for more than one release. By now 5 albums have seen the light of day. The band toured to promote them, but Wilson took the backseat on albums 3 and 4 due to a busy schedule. As Steven Wilson was declared prog-god by certain media and since Aviv Geffen is a rather unknown fellar (to me) and modest appearance, I always thought of Wilson to be the center of the Blackfield universe. Aviv Geffen however is really quite somebody in Israel. Already in 1993 at the age of 17 he resonates the burden of a generation lost with the song Achshav Meunan, a Hebrew original, translated into It's Cloudy Now with the epic lyric "We're the Fucked Up Generation" on Blackfield's debut. It was in 1995 that Geffen played a rally to support the peace process, where he performed Livkot Lekha (Cry for You), a song that prophesied the tragic assassination of Yitzak Rabin later that night. Songs of Geffen became anthems of Imagine-like status. It's Cloudy Now and The Hole in Me make me connect with Geffen. Though we grew up in different contexts it's Generation X pulling my strings and I only allow misery, loneliness and emptiness in on rare occasions. And this is one.
  1. Open Mind
  2. Blackfield
  3. Glow
  4. Scars
  5. Lullaby
  6. Pain
  7. Summer
  8. Cloudy Now
  9. The Hole in Me
  10. Hello