As you have probably heard by now, the Godfather of underground music, Lou Reed, passed on Sunday from delayed complications from a liver transplant. All three of us at LxL have always been fond of Reed and his independent spirit, having included him and his pioneering band the Velvet Underground on numerous lists including our recent best space songs list with the great “Satellite of Love.” We will be giving our entire list over to Lou Reed this Thursday, but for now, as a tribute, I thought I would grace you with “Perfect Day”, a song beside being known well for being used during Ewan McGregor’s drug trip in Trainspotting, well captures the equal parts grace and cynicism that was much of Reed’s music.
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How Music Works
The great Talking Heads front man David Byrne wrote the generically titled How Music Works late last year, but the book is anything but generic. Byrne has never released a auto-biography about himself or the band, but he coyly uses this book and the various subjects in the book to essentially give huge glimpses of his personal story. The title makes it sound like it may describe how music works from a physiological or neurological standpoint, but that’s obviously not Byrne’s expertise. His expertise however, as a 40-year music industry expert is to discuss all the external factors that affect the music that is made – including the venue, the recording process, technology, the trends, and much more.
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Coldplay – Mylo Xyloto
I can’t say that I’ve been completely “in” on Coldplay since the release of X & Y, and it is hard for me to put a finger on exactly why I stopped listening to them. I didn’t really enjoy X & Y all that much, but one mediocre album rarely dissuades me from completely removing a band from my musical consciousness. Never was there a moment where I said to myself “Screw Coldplay”, “They’re sellouts”, or “Chris Martin should strap himself to a bomb, go on stage with U2, and flip the switch”. I think what happened was, even without paying particularly close attention to Coldplay post-X & Y, I knew that they had begun fully transitioning into “arena-rock band” mode, while focusing less on the sparse piano and simple guitar ballads that won my affection to begin with.
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“Mother of Pearl” by Roxy Music
Every so often we will be mixing up our “Review Royale” with not only albums, but single tracks by a particular artist/band. Our first selection for the “Single Track Edition” is the second to last track off Roxy Music’s third album, Stranded. The album was recorded in 1973, just after producer/music legend Brian Eno (Talking Heads, U2, Coldplay) had left the band. Incidentally, Brian himself dubbed Stranded, Roxy Music’s finest work, even though it was after he was even involved in the band. We are not here today to discuss the merit of the album, but what I believe to the best track on the album. A song that takes the listener through a raging party, then sobering up through lyrics that can make you rethink the love, life, and parties forever. The mother of hangover tracks, the mother of metaphorically genius tracks, and a mother for every epic glam rock track in the history of glam rock … “Mother of Pearl”.
Continue reading ““Mother of Pearl” Retro Review Royale”