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Written by | December 30, 2012 0:01 | No Comments

Irreplaceable – Beyonce – “To the left, to the left…” . One of the woman’s best song is a bitter break up things. The words refer to the boxes where She wants Him to put the boxes he is filling with his belongings. Apparently, Beyonce has had enough of his two timing. For such a brittle parting it is a catchy singalong and an instant classic. At Roseland a coupla years ago it was performed by the audience. Which kinda sucks – Grade: A

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Lather – Frank Zappa – Who can’t applaud the wonder that was Zappa? The best named man on the plant, defined as he zaps sounds and expectations. So I applaud this piece of jazz lo-fi weirdness with all my heart, just don’t make me listen to it – Grade: B-

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Written by | December 28, 2012 0:09 | No Comments

Yelling for Peace is most likely the best way to do it. No one listened to the hippies or the punks so hey- lets give these hardcore kids a chance. This generation is bombarded with violence. They’re anesthetized to the drama of it all. Ya seen one head get blow off you’ve seen them all

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Wonderful Tonight – Eric Clapton – Released in 1977 (at the height of punk!) this piece of dross is the nadir of Clapton’s career and through its appearance on an early “Miami Vice” episode, the embodiment of the 1980s. Amazingly insipid – Grade: D

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Written by | December 27, 2012 0:01 | No Comments

Popular Song – Mika – Another first rate piece of pop confection by the English (via Lebanon) pop star. Intensely catchy sweet bop one IPOD commercial away from world domination – Grade: A-

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Written by | December 26, 2012 0:01 | No Comments

The Gypsy Rover – The Irish Rovers – A variation on “Gypsy Davies”, an early 1800s Irish folk song, it tells the mythic story of a fine Irish Lady who left behind her family and heritage to follow a Gypsy. This version is all Irish lilt and a strong if soft male brogue, when I was a child (this is the first song I remember ever hearing), I had a prettier version with a woman singer – Grade: B+

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Written by | December 25, 2012 0:01 | No Comments

White Christmas – Michael Buble And Bing Crosby – This isn’t a particularly bad version, it culls a take off a Crosby Christmas special and through the magic of technology adds Buble, who is quickly becoming the American standards singer of choice. But all this forcing dead pop stars out of their graves and making them duet with people without their permission turns my stomach. It is grave robbing – Grade: F

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Written by | December 24, 2012 0:01 | No Comments

Rolex – The -Dream, Cassie – With the advent of new r&b I have been wondering if maybe I don’t like it any more. But The-Dream is one soul singer who constantly knocks me out. This isn’t a great song, lyrics are a little obvious, the synth in the background is a touch light, and Casha Monet, his new find, seems like Ree Ree redux… still it catches your ear with ease and holds it – Grade: A-

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Losing My Religion – REM – This is where it all came together and blew me up big, folk rock with a chip on its shoulder and moodwise an ancestor of new r&b. As for Stipe’s lyric? It rings with desire and disllussion – Grade: A+

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Written by | December 22, 2012 0:01 | No Comments

All I Want for Christmas Is You – Mariah carey – Sure, I prefer the kid in “Love, Actually” as well. But this version, by the co-writer no less, will do. From 1994 and maybe the most recent song to join the Christman pantheon of songs. Over sung, but it’s her call not ours – Grade: A

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Written by | December 21, 2012 0:07 | No Comments

It sure ain’t a happy tune and the matching pictures just evoke more desolation and distress! The video was entirely made by fans who shared for two weeks their instagram pictures inspired by the lyrics of the song, since the band had tweeted and instagrammed the lyrics before releasing the song,.. a totally original way to make a video.

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State Of Grace – Taylor Swift – One of Taylor’s best songs though it took awhile to catch on, the killer pay off, “Love’s a ruthless game unless you play it good and right” has three very very strong words and Swift nails each and every one of them. And the sound is exuberant, it is darkly shaded (which is why it took awhile) but that’s because that “unless” is right on top of you – Grade: A

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Written by | December 20, 2012 0:01 | No Comments

Gospel – Robbie Williams – Big time pop songs and about reuniting with the love of your life years after she dismissed you, indeed never had you, or an extended metaphor about artists and audience and either way, a kiss off that sounds like a history lesson – Grade: A

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Written by | December 19, 2012 0:07 | No Comments

Gangnam style is a song that most people love and dance to. My favourite part is when he says “ohhhhh sexy lady”, it is the only English in this song, and the only thing people can understand

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Eternal Father, Strong To Save – Choir Of St. Mary’s Episcopal Church – Having spent years at English Boarding Schools when just a wee tot, English Hymns play like nostalgia trigger for me. Something compounded by being in the UK right this minute (but not as I write). I always thought it was me who could only ever remember “For those in peril on the sea”, but listening to it here, that’s still all I can remember becausethe words are muffled – Grade: A

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Written by | December 18, 2012 0:01 | No Comments

Are We All We Are – Pink – It sounds like she’s saying olly olly oxen free and I guess that kids game is at the heart of the way Pink deals with love and life. There is something insolent and aggressive but fun loving and bouncy – Grade: A

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Written by | December 17, 2012 0:01 | No Comments

88 – Digsy – A study in being 17 years old and looking back on a hip hop world you were never a part of. This is first rate piece of teen-hop with a dream of a future, or a past not unlike the Reverand’s himself – Grade: A

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All I’ve Got To Do – The Beatles – Easily the most mature song on their second albu. Lennon, of cause, who speeds yp at the break as if, as Tim Reilly once noted, as though the entire claim of love and responsibility is real. Which it might not be with a vocal so fragle it seems bound to crack – Grade: A+

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Written by | December 15, 2012 0:09 | No Comments

Driver Friendly just cheapened themselves so much that there is no turning back unless someone scrubs my brain with bleach and I forget I ever heard it. The worse part is how great it could have been if it weren’t written in the back of a Prius on the way to the studio (or basement)

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Keys To The City – Spider Bags – Not only does it include the line of the year, “I’ve Been cheating on my girlfriend with my ex-wife”, it is also a true loser anthem to never leaving, not running. Incidentally, as Dan mentioned me, not at all what happened to him.

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Written by | December 14, 2012 0:01 | No Comments

The Autumn Carnival (Anton Newcombe remix) – The Dandy Warhols – Remember when there was that second (or is that fifth) wve of nyc rockers spearheaded by the Strokes? nothing much came of it, it was like our version of Brit Pop. The dandy warhols were a messy pro-rock psychedelic dingum then and this, produced y Mr. Brian Jonstown and sworn enemy of all things Dandyish himself, doesn’t begin to sound good – Grade: C

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Written by | December 13, 2012 0:01 | No Comments

Crystalline (Omar Souleyman remix) – Bjork – I’m a simple man, you say remix, I say more bass. but it is 2012 and today things can get weird. especially when dealing with Bjork. The rest of bastards leaves me a little whatever, but this Middle eastern flavored rethinking is masterful; – Grade: A

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Written by | December 12, 2012 0:01 | No Comments

Coming Up – Paul McCartney – Macca goes disco and does a pretty great job of . He wrote an enormously catchy bass lick and had all the other instruments play it for the backing track, then he added the beat and sang on top of it. Easy peasy – Grade: A

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Written by | December 11, 2012 0:01 | No Comments

Ghost – Cat Cosmai – Blue eyed soul by a big voiced woman doing it old style. The song is killer though the back up singers come on a little Supremes though they could have been brought down a little mix. The bridge is a glorious construction, expanding the verse and leading her on. The voice? The voice is special – Grade: A-

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Written by | December 10, 2012 0:01 | No Comments

Border Crossing – Trail And Ways – Berkeley grads sound like Ennio Morricone as played by a run of the mill indie band only even better than that sounds like. Dig the whistle!! – Grade: B+

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Written by | December 8, 2012 0:07 | No Comments

I mean there is Rhianna and Mariah and they’re all well and good but when you get some ‘alt’ bands in on the mix it sounds so much more refreshed and energized. Considering these kids are young enough to still believe in flying reindeer, there’s no doubt that the amplified enthusiasm is sincere.

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Different Sides – Leonard Cohen – No idea why, fter months of being completely indifferent to it, this song hit my musical sweet spot but I think it is the way he sings (croaks?) “frankly” on the “frankly I don’t like your tone” line and the butter gleam in Cohen’s eyes as he he tells her wants to leave the way they have sex alone – Grade: A

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Written by | December 7, 2012 0:01 | No Comments

My Friend – Disco Biscuits – This is a strangely creative art rocker using a bizarre spoken word samples and a buzzing beat in the background. It is like disco if she only ever heard disco on someone elses car radio s you went roaring down the highway – Grade: B+

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Written by | December 6, 2012 0:01 | No Comments

Know Till Now – Jim James – The last time I was duly impressed by Jim James was My Morning Jacket’s 2008 New Year’s Eve at MSG, but perhaps the difference is that James is at his best when he is working out his soul jones, even if he is making it above a psychedelic electronic dream track. Off next years Regions of Light and Sound of God – Grade: A-

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Written by | December 5, 2012 0:01 | No Comments

Only Wanna Dance With You – Ke$ha – This is the one where the Strokes join her and it is a killer track. Nothing much on its mind, but it bounces in perfect elctro pop vein and when julian joins her he doesn’t do much but add background candy but candy it is. Grade: A

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Written by | December 4, 2012 0:01 | No Comments

You Just May Be The One – The Monkees – If nothing else. the reunion concert on Saturdy reinforced what a terrific songwriter Nesmith is and this, off the “we played all our own instruments and wrote all our own songs” Headquarters, received an enormous outpouring affection and the reson is simple: t isn’t just a love song but a cll to Universal love and need – Grade: A

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Written by | December 3, 2012 0:01 | No Comments

Scream & Shout – Will I AM, Britney Spears – Return to form for the BEP leader after years in the wilderness, and always a pleasure to hear from Brit, except that if you wanna pout your hand in the flame you’ll get burnt and Britney will be seen as the savior of this song. Because she is – Grade: B+

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Written by | December 2, 2012 0:10 | No Comments

artists write songs lacking meaning simply because they’ll bring greater success. Although the song is based on a serious subject matter, this does not take away from the fact that this is a great song to move around to. The blend of instruments are immaculate and as the song comes to an end, it still goes out with a bang!

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Girlfriend – Ty Segall – Garage rock with the the most minimalist piano break bang in the middle and a deep in the world of indie sense from the heart of Cali by a man who won’t stop recording – Grade: B+

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Written by | December 1, 2012 0:01 | No Comments

Two Little Hitlers – Elvis Costello And The Attractions – This is prime Elvis, a heart damaged manifesto of emotional fascism building to a denunciation that questions both his and the woman’s shared humanity. And no, I don’t mean “I wouldn’t cry for lost souls you might drown”but “I thought i’d let you down but you were just deflating” -the sort of pun not only he but me and no one else can write today – Grade: A+

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Written by | November 30, 2012 0:13 | No Comments

Behind the chorus’ lyrics of “I, am a lonely hunter” is a passionately strained voice that expresses the darker emotive forces of a grunged out song like a Nirvana hit and with every fluctuating, alien-like electro melody one feels transported to a different dimension of flashing lights, lava lamps, glow sticks, and the copious usage of bongs.

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Long Emotional Ride – Graham Parker – The Rumour give him a harder back bone, but hard than what? Last time I saw him was solo at Joe’s Pub, and he didn’t need much then. So consider this a nostalgia trip mostly in name, and get off on the return of Brinsley Schwartz and the sound of pub rock in transition. Killer emotional wreck rocker, by the way. Grade: A

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Timshel (Africa Mix) – Mumford And Sons – This works so much better than it has any right to, Mumford is almost chanting and the backing track is a xylophone playing an African melody, like the time Vampire Weekend dream of writing – Grade: A

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Written by | November 27, 2012 0:13 | No Comments

Nate Ruess makes me a-ring-ting-tingle.fun. covered “Sleigh Bells” and it’s so good I could cry. I hit ‘play’ and was just blown away. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but whatever expectations I had, they exceeded. Ruess can literally sing anything and fun. makes this song not a lame Christmas tune, but a legit great dance song

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Written by | 0:12 | No Comments

I know people who find him endearing and I respect them so every now and then I give the guy a shot. Why? Why not just rest calmly in the idea that if I ever encountered him I would douse myself in Purell and walk away before I said anything. I suppose because a small part of me is waiting for the light bulb moment when I actually ‘get it’.

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Swimming Pools – Kendrick Lamar – I’ve been waiting for a song off the Dre protege to announce its presence and here it is. The single. It sounds are as strange as dark as you imagine and the rap is spit nasty and fast and the chorus as sad bastard a look at hard drinking as you could possible imagine – Grade: A-

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Written by | November 26, 2012 0:12 | No Comments

Really, the reasoning is that I hate her lyrics so I never even gave her voice a chance. Hearing her on the radio and over stereo systems has led me to strongly disliking her as a whole. I think someone slipped something in her drink to improve her voice for this tune

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Written by | 0:11 | No Comments

Real Ant fans have seen waves of change in his work and this certainly is a tsunami but in a good way. He may have lost his live show appeal but recorded, I think he still got it

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One Of The Boys – John Lennon – From 1977, recorded at the Dakota, and just with acoustic guitar, Lennon takes a scalpel to the boys only rock group world. His personal life dripping into his music but what’s odd is, this song would make a very good rock group song if it had been finished – Grade: A

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