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#Throwback Thursday – Traveling Wilburys – Handle With Care

When you hear of a Supergroup, 9 times out of ten they never work out. There really only are three that lived up to expectations….Cream, CSNY, and The Traveling Wilburys.

The worst Supergroup list is much more voluminous and include Mr. Big, Them Crooked Vultures, Hollywood Vampires, Lou Reed Metallica, Chickenfoot, The Good The Bad & The Queen, Monsters of Folk, Audioslave, Velvet Revolver, and Zwan to name a few. It’s exhausting just listing that many bad bands. When you go through all these groups rosters it is really depressing  thinking of all the amazing individual talent involved.

The Traveling Wilburys consisting of Bob Dylan, George Harrison, Jeff Lynne, Roy Orbison, and Tom Petty; bucked the historical trend and produced a classic album. The album was written by all five artists, and recorded over a ten-day period in May 1988. Unfortunately this would be the only music the complete Supergroup would produce as Roy Orbison died of a heart attack in December 6, 1988. The group would make another album without Orbison, but it wasn’t the same. It’s one of those “Who knows what could have been” questions when you think back about this group.

To imagine this group touring together and playing Wilbury tunes sprinkled with individual tunes would arguably be the best show ever. Beatles tunes, Dylan tunes, ELO tunes, Orbison tunes, and Petty tunes. All you can do is dream of that tour. Here is their standout tune, “Handle With Care”.

Fun Fact: Tom Petty’s involvement came by chance, as Harrison had left his guitar at Petty’s house and Harrison went to get it and invited Petty to join the session. Sick

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Smith and Cranberry Jam

It has all the making’s of a Back of the Crowd wet dream.
Former Smiths bassist Andy Rourke and ex-Cranberries singer Dolores O’Riordan have formed a band. Two Across The Pond favourites with a New York DJ/producer called Olé Koretsky have come together for a new project called D.A.R.K. [Delores-Andy Rourke-Koretsky, perhaps?] (more…)

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Song of the Week:  Music Band “Fortune Guns”

Life certainly has its ups and downs. Will today bring good or not so good and what vibes allude to either?  That seems to be the premise of the new single from Nashville’s own Music Band. Nashville has really been producing some great bands that stay true to rock and roll. Music Band seems no different. This is a band to watch going forward. Their new album, Wake Up Laughing, is out 4/1 on Infinity Cat.

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#Throwback Thursday – R.E.M./Dashboard Confessional 

An absolute gem from the time MTV still worked on producing music and not Teen Mom/Catfish programming. This performance comes from a MTV show called covers where Michael Stipe joined Chris Carrabba to perform R.E.M. and Dashboard Confessional tunes. Stipe gives an absolute masterclass on how EMO should be performed to the mostly teen audience. You can find the album from this show on iTunes/Spotify, it’s a great listen. Here is Stipe ripping through the Dashboard Confessional EMO classic “Hands Down”.

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Ray LaMontagne – Album Review – Ouroboros

An odd thing happened Across The Pond this week.
While I pondered, weak and weary, over Ray LaMontagne’s quaint and curious new volume Ouroboros, Mrs ATP chirped: “That’s good, who’s that?”

Mrs ATP, whose favourite film is Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves because Bryan Adams bizarrely emerges from Sherwood Forest at the end with a Stratocaster (10th Century vintage, presumably), may finally be coming round to some decent music.

Ouroboros, released on March 4, recalls the classic late ’60s and early ’70s rock records that would never come within a terabyte of Mrs ATP’s iPod. 

It’s named after the ancient symbol of a snake eating its own tail, symbolising the cyclical nature of the universe and a fitting name for an album of largely seamless tracks which winds its way through the rock of ages.

Even the track listing recalls the vinyl records which are still treasured by music purists, with Part One and Part Two standing in for Side A and Side B.

Opening track Homecoming recalls Syd Barrett era Floyd, Simon and Garfunkel, Van Morrison’s Astral Weeks or more recently Beck’s Morning Phase with meadows, sunsets, springtime, feathers and comforting sounds when the lights are down.

Then it shifts into something approaching Cream with Hey No Pressure, with a repeating Clapton-esque riff breaking down into a closing prog-rock keyboard freakout.

The classic rock vibe continues with The Changing Man/While It Still Beats, an eight minute long double header which channels Led Zeppelin, with Page style riffs and echo laden solos, Bonham-esque drum breakout and multi-tracked vocals a la Robert Plant.

Part Two resumes the chillout vibe, progressing into the world weariness of Dark Side-era Floyd with In My Own Way, Another Day and A Murmeration of Starlings.

The guitars are straight out of the David Gilmour songbook, and the titles should tell you all you need to know about their psychedelic folk lyrics.

The album segues straight into Wouldn’t Make a Lovely Photograph, completing Part Two’s four song cycle which defies the artificial breaks of the iPod age, and ending with the prediction: “You’re never going to hear this song on the radio.”
Which brings me back to the odd goings on Across The Pond, and Mrs ATP’s new found musical taste.

Mrs ATP, who listens to commercial radio precisely because it plays Adele on a half-hourly cycle, may be on the verge of becoming a classic rock fan.

We might finally get to see a decent gig together.

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Of Monsters and Men – Concert Review -Barrowlands 25th November 2016

Given that the gig was booked for the night after we’d spent the best part of a day travelling back from (humble holiday brag incoming) Japan, I was a bit worried about either not making it through to Glasgow or passing out mid gig. Thankfully our friends offered to drive through and my mosh pit orchestrating skills weren’t required given that the Icelandic indie folk pop Of Monsters and Men is very much more suited to a sway along at the back type of vibe. Which is exactly where we made a beeline for upon arrival at a packed Barrowlands, within striking distance of the bar, naturally Back of the Crowd. The support act, a Norwegian indie pop band very in keeping with the main act, Highasakite. Well, not literally but they did finish of a uplifting trio of songs, and I’d recommend giving them a listen.
Of Monsters and Men then assembled: nine of them in total including various backstage percussion, all colour coordinated in black, with the irrepressibly rock and roll drummer standing out in particular given he looked like he moonlights as an extra in Game of Thrones or Vikings. I wistfully imagined that his name might be something fitting such as Ragnar. It turns out his name is Arnar, whilst the lead singer, a short rotund man donned in a baseball cap, happens to be called Ragnar Þórhallsson. Can’t win them all.

This tour was promoting their second album, Beneath the Skin, a decent hiatus following 2011’s My Head is an Animal. There was an eerie vibe in the barrowlands half light as they opened: brass came out of the darkness, before the drums began to build into their first number Thousand Eyes. Another new song Empire followed, before Arnar started orchestrating the crowd for King and Lionheart. This was followed by Black Water with the double drum combination given it a very tribal feel. Fan favourite Mountain Sound then allowed for a bit of a “hold your horses now” crowd sing along. Crystals was probably the highlight of the songs from their new album, although a few of the lower key songs in the middle of the set felt like they just merged into one. Though just when it seemed that new song Hunger was beginning to drag its heels it awakened into a powerful crescendo of trumpets, lights and drums, signalling a move towards the finale of Lakehouse, Six Weeks and Little Talks.

The highlight for me was unsurprisingly their biggest song Little Talks. I think the reason why this song is so memorable is the fact that both the lead singer, Nanna and Ragnar, play off each other so well, finishing each other sentences. I’d like it if more of their songs were like this with both female and male vocals interchanging although it’s probably bit more time consuming to write these songs, and maybe it would be a bit clichéd if they did. It also had a killer trumpet solo.

The lead switched to keyboard for the encore of Organs, Dirty Paws, and We Sink. The opportunity to hear tweaked versions of the songs live was certainly worth it. Whilst I have for preference for the upbeat over the introspective, I think the magic is in the variety in composition of the songs, and it will be interesting to see what their third album holds when it comes.

Setlist:

Thousand Eyes

Empire

King and Lionheart

Black Water

Mountain Sound

Winter Sound

Slow Life

Human

I of the Storm

Backyard

Crystals

Hunger

Wolves Without Teeth

Lakehouse

Little Talks

Six Weeks

Encore:

Organs

Dirty Paws

We Sink

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Song of the Week:  Modern Baseball “Everyday”

Following up 2014’s excellent You’re Gonna Miss It All, MB returns this year with Holy Ghost  (out 5/13 via Run For Cover).  Their first single “Everyday” (paired with “Apple Cider, I Don’t Mind” as a dual release) is an emotional roller coaster. The track really hits home at the bridge, ending with the relevant lines “Waking up everyday is all about doing things you don’t want to do”.   Closing with a sense of aspiration, stating  “You’re rewarded — you get to wake up.”

Both tracks are a darker more mature side we have not seen from the band. They really are proving to be the best in their genre.  Holy Ghost should only further emphasize that. Looking forward to them proving us right!  Check out both tracks below.