The Wrecking Crew Review

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In recent years, music documentaries have been covering the unsung heroes of music, from the mysterious artists (Rodriguez in Searching for Sugar Man and Fantastic Man about Nigeria’s William Onyeabor), to the spaces and behind-the-scenes people that create classic sounds. There’s been a recent string of music studio documentaries about the magic of some famous studios, from Dave Grohl’s Sound City to the southern mysticism of Muscle Shoals. A couple years ago, 20 Feet from Stardom even won a “Best Documentary” Oscar for its tremendous history and day in the life of some of the greatest backup singers. The Wrecking Crew! Looks at the biggest hitmakers of all time, L.A.’s recording band The Wrecking Crew. On a larger scale, the documentary looks at the lost art of the session band: musicians that could by hired and relied on in an instant to play anything you dreamed up.
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Love & Mercy Review

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Brian Wilson is surely one of rock’s most interesting characters, a troubled genius that faced incredible creative opposition in his own mind, family, and band. I wrote a review of Love & Mercy, the new Brian Wilson biopic that avoids the usual music biopic storylines, for Books & CultureYou can check it out here.

Bonnaroo 2012 Lineup Analysis

Bonnaroo 2012 Music Festival

The 11th Bonnaroo Music Festival is set to take place in no man’s land Tennessee (Manchester, to be exact) from June 7th-10th, and is locked and loaded in terms of the lineup. The lineup was revealed yesterday, and here are our initial thoughts.
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LxListening: Little Bit of Sunshine

After incessantly listening to Beach Boys’ Smile for two weeks, the Beach Boys have helped me wane off the sunshine and heat as the Indiana landscape slowly turns into an unforgiving frozen tundra. So here are my five songs that are either influenced by the Beach Boys or embody their bright sprit, two things that help me as a slowly drift off into my honey-induced hibernation.

Ready for the Winter
Getting nice and cozy

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Beach Boys Review Royale: The Smile Sessions

The Beach Boys

The SMiLE Sessions

Smile Sessions Box Set

It has been known as “The Holy Grail of Rock ‘n’ Roll” or the “Most famous album never released”. In 1966 and 1967, at the same time as The Beatles were concocting their  career staple Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, The Beach Boys were constructing their own magnum opus known as SMiLE, meant as an ambitious follow up to their first masterpiece, Pet Sounds. But the project was rumored to be scrapped near the final stages due to dissension among the band about the project as well as Beach Boys front man and producer Brian Wilson dissolving due to heavy drug use and mental disorders.  Many tracks meant for SMiLE including staple Beach Boys songs “Good Vibrations”, “Heroes and Villains”, and “Surf’s Up” ended up landing on subsequent albums, but the album was never released as intended. Also, several of the missing tracks on SMiLE got released in the 1993 Good Vibrations box set but not released in album format or in complete.

The Beach Boys SMiLE
SMiLE, the mighty chalice of rock history

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