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Saturday, March 15, 2014

Top 5 from November 26, 2013

Leopard-Skin Pillbox Hat – Bob Dylan from The Bootleg Series, Vol. 4: The "Royal Albert Hall" Concert

A particularly rockin' blues from the “what the audience doesn't want” segment of the show. Also notable for a rather terrible guitar solo (Is that Bob?, it can't be Robbie. There's a song with a terrible Bob solo on Blonde in Blonde which I thought laid to rest any expectation the he would ever play lead again, but, then again, this came first) The song itself is distinguished by being in an otherwise standard twelve-bar-blues form, but having its lyrics organized into four-line stanzas (he fourth line occupying the usually vacant bars eleven and twelve). Dylan didn't like to waste space in songs. The performance of She Belongs to Me and in another couple of spots on the solo first disc of this set has measures dropped here and there between lyrics.

Stuck Between Stations – The Hold Steady, from Boys and Girls in America

Love this song, usually gets me pumped-up and air drumming, singing or at least mouthing the words, volume cranked. I heard it this morning stuck in the back corner of the 71 bus and had to do this all internally. The archetypal Hold Steady song, for me at least - probably as it's one of the first I knew. Kerouac and Berryman are invoked here. The line between Springsteen and Strummer is walked.
(h/t @FakeCraigFinn)

Slot Machine by Emily XYZ w/ Myers Martlett from the United States Of Poetry

Ignoring the Index of Economic Indicators and the statistics that tell me I'm poor, I'm gointoth'store!
I'm gointoth'store! I'm gointothstore!”
Here's to the defeat of another proposed Massachusetts casino!
From the soundtrack album to a PBS show about poetry, some poetry slam stuff like this, along with folks like Allen Ginsberg and Josef Brodsky reciting over music and musicians like Lou Reed and Leonard Cohen dropping any pretense of “singing” to recite their songs. A mixed bag, but mostly enjoyable.

Enter From The East - The John Carter Octet from Dauwhe

This cut from the first suite of Carter's “Roots and Folklore” series (probably the most easily found as the other four albums are languishing in the continuing neglect of the Gramavision catalog, currently Warner's doing) begins with a striking percussion introduction before the groups distinguished soloists take over.

Un Uomo Da Rispettare (Titoli) by Ennio Morricone from Crime and Dissonance

A case for soundtrack albums. The presentation of the music in full is quite stunning. I found the film on You Tube (a “one last job” film set in Germany starring Kirk Douglas) and it chops this piece up and sprinkles it around for its own uses. The music is a bit reminiscent of Gil Evans' late style, the Live at the Public Theater albums in particular.

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