(New York City, New York) – Details have today emerged of a deal between managements of The Darkness and The Strokes to stem the tide of male pattern baldness in The Darkness lead singer Justin Hawkins in time for the release of the pop metal band’s follow-up to 2012 comeback, Hot Cakes.
images-1In exchange for a ready supply of their coarse Mediterranean locks, The Strokes will receive substantial “irony” payments, which will allow them to affect different detached poses in relation to their art. In addition, the band will retain “pop sheen veneer” options, which the leather-clad neo-punkers hope will reverse sliding fortunes as have announced that they are working towards a “return to the scene” in 2015.
imagesHowever, despite the obvious benefits to both sides, the formal arrangements have taken a long time to hammer out, as evidenced by the bands’ respective coolings-off public imagination-wise.

Justin Hawkins was understandably nervous about the move: The history of intra-band, let alone inter-band, hair transplants has not always been a pretty one. For every Status Quo/Rick Parfaitt/Francis Rossi miracle, when blond hair took to brown follicles, there’s ten R.E.M./Mike Mills/Mike Stipe disasters where, after an uncertain and frizzy start, Stipe was forced to give up, shave his head and even, in the mid-2000s, affect a silly blue make-up eyestrip mask.

And don’t let’s even get started on the tragic early 90s cross gender hair transfer between Celine Dion and Michael Bolton.

Accordingly, the be-spandexed lead singer was initially in favour of the less invasive “Scorpions Manoever”, so named for the famously all-balding German heavy metal band, whereby whatever remaining hair is teased and sprayed high with a “thickening” agent. It is said that his similarly thinning haired guitarist brother, Dan, who pointed out how thoroughly ridiculous the group looked by the time of their Love Bite album, persuaded Hawkins otherwise.

Negotiations were no less fraught on The Strokes side with bassist Nikolai Fraiture arguing that irony and pop sheen veneer were “the last refuges of a scoundrel” and would cost the band their remaining shreds of street credibility. He was voted down 5 – 1 by the rest of the band who were intent on avoiding what another member called “the dead end of cult hero-dom.”

As of press time, concerns were growing that Strokes guitarist Albert Hammond Jr.’s hair was not actually growing back.

Published in: on November 26, 2014 at 2:07 pm  Leave a Comment  

The Stories We’re Working On In the Thrifty Vinyl Newsroom

the-register-168-1993-300x191The Stories We’re Working On In the Thrifty Vinyl
Newsroom – It’s All the Music News That Matters

  • Fan Letter Unanswered
  • Franz Ferdinand, Kaiser Chiefs Proud To Continue The Naming-Your-Band-After-WWI-Things Tradition Begun By Sopwith Camel
  • Daft Punk Neither
  • Marshall Electronics To Develop New Amplifiers That Go Up To Twelve 
  • Rolling Stones Purchased By National Trust, Refurbished In Time For Early 2015 Re-Opening
  • Novelty Band Ends Yet Another Fucking Song With “Cha-Cha-Cha”
  • After Death of Lou Reed, Area Man Claims He Is Waldo Jeffers, Was Not Stabbed With Scissors, Had Sex After Mailing Self To Girlfriend
  • Whole Lotta Lenya, a band which covers AC/DC songs in the style of Kurt Weill, admits it only exists for the sake of its nominal pun
  • Our reviewers try to critique the Kinks without using the phrase “quintessentially English”, Jacob Dylan without mentioning his father, Joe Jackson without referring to him as a former “angry young man” or comparing him to Elvis Costello and the new Soul Jazz Studio One compilation without recourse to embarrassing Jamaican patois.
  • Local punk band The Ass-Burger Syndrome breaks up over autistic differences
  • London’s Rinse FM DJ Spends More Time Bigging-Up Various Local Crews Than Playing Music
  • Karaoke Jonathan Richman Technically Much Better Than Original
  • Enya Finally Cracks
  • Air Guitar Amplifier Speaker Pierced As Air Guitar Plunged Through It
  • Nas Releases 4-CD Concept Album Based On Nixon’s Visit To Great Wall of China 
  • Opera Not Over, Despite Previous Understanding Vis-A-Vis Obese Woman 
  • Shy Couple Face Music, Remain Seated
Published in: on November 24, 2014 at 3:26 pm  Comments (5)  

Dave Brubeck Quartet – Newport 1958 (TFL 5059) (1958)

SAM_0613Well-regarded, peak Brubeck prior to his famous rhythmic experiments a couple of years down the road. Still exciting, Ellington-heavy set provides the melodic depth and swing for the academic leader and his jamming soloist/rhythm section. One quid for me.

Published in: on November 23, 2014 at 9:27 am  Leave a Comment  

All Jazz – A Decade of Pacific Jazz (ZET2) (1962)

SAM_0610“In my music, I’m trying to play the truth of what I am. The reason it’s difficult is because I am changing all the time.” — Charles Mingus.

I have some sympathy with Mingus’ sentiment (recently highlighted in the Basement Tapes Complete box set), both in its original intention and as a music enthusiast. Practically, this means that over the years I’ve played in classical, jazz, punk, folk and electronic bands and can listen to Sandy Denny, Studio One reggae or the Stooges and say to myself, ‘This is my favorite-ever music’ and mean it in each case. SAM_0611Or, indeed, in the case of this Pacific Jazz compilation which is not only 100% great, but features a complimentary range of smooth and spiky soul jazz from 1950s California. SAM_0612It is my favorite-ever music. Mean it. And only for £1 a couple weeks ago in Hythe.

Published in: on November 23, 2014 at 9:17 am  Leave a Comment  

Dave Grohl: “My Music Is Too Superficial Now”

Screen shot 2014-11-21 at 15.08.37DAVE GROHL: “MY MUSIC IS SO SUPERFICIAL”     If my new record needs some ridiculous conceit to sell it, that’s a problem,’ says Grohl

Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl has spoken about his children forcing him to listen to his music.

Speaking in a Thrifty Vinyl interview when asked what his three daughters listen to (Grohl’s children are aged eight years old, five years old and three months), Grohl said: “The worst thing they impose on me is the Foo Fighters’ latest album.”

“My current music is a real test in terms of loyalty towards your kids,” the former Nirvana drummer continued. “But at the same time I can still make them listen to my good stuff. I got my eldest two, Harper and Violet, a turntable and a Nirvana box set. So they listen to Bleach and Nevermind. Give a six-year-old a turntable and the ‘Love Buzz’ or ‘Sliver’ singles and I guarantee that within one hour they will be doing what you did when you were six years old, too. Records on the floor, dancing, singing; it’s great.”

Elsewhere in the interview, Grohl talked about what he perceives as the dire state of his current music, claiming that, “my music is so superficial”.

“It’s fun to listen to, to turn up in your car when you’re in traffic, but there’s no substance at all. It’s devoid of any meaning. I’m not just saying that as a 45-year-old rock musician, I’m saying that as a human being. If my new record needs some ridiculous conceit to sell it, that’s a problem.”



Published in: on November 21, 2014 at 3:20 pm  Comments (2)  

The Gil Evans Orchestra – Out of the Cool (MCA-5653) (1961)

"Oh, hi there, sorry you just caught me doing a spot of arranging."

“Oh, hi there, sorry you just caught me doing a spot of arranging.”

Some collectors will grumble that it’s the 1986, digitally-remastered, non-gatefold, redesigned-typeface version of Gil Evans’ classic, but not me. Even though I’m a big fan of his work with Miles Davis, which just preceded this release, I’d never felt compelled to venture into Evans’ catalogue as leader. Out of the Cool it not the blissed-out state of affairs suggested by the title, nor is it, without Davis, as punchy, edgy or as grandly orchestrated in the uniquely updated big band style of Miles Aheadet al. As thoughtfully arranged, dynamic and melodic as those earlier records, Cool remains, if anything, a slightly bluesier enterprise, with plenty of space for some fine improvisation. Reminiscent of Charles Mingus’ Columbia sides. In the end, it is, simply, a terrific listen.

Three quid from Oxfam in Folkestone.

Published in: on October 18, 2014 at 10:51 am  Leave a Comment  

The Hour Glass (UA-LA013-G2) (1973)/ Duane Allman – An Anthology (2CP 0108) (1972)

SAM_0576The liner notes accompanying this compilation of the Hour Glass’s two Lps could hardly be more baldly dismissive, beginning with the opening paragraph (“The music on these two records is not very good”) and carrying on in like fashion from there (“Far from being the story of why the Hour Glass was such a fine band, it tells us more about why they were not“). In fact, writer Ben Edmonds’ attitude towards this charming pop-soul double album has more to do with place and timing than artistry.

A little background. The Hour Glass represents the first commercial output of Allman brothers Duane and Gregg. Despite having been in the business for a few years, the boys were manipulated in classic “I’m-gonna-make-you-a-star”-style into moving to LA dressed up in the hippy gladrags, having songs picked out for them and being allowed to perform only for a few high-profile gigs. As a result, the band was broke and culturally overwhelmed with a sorely misrepresentative repertoire, all of which left them more than a little frustrated and bitter. I think Edmonds’ liner notes reflect the band’s still fresh resentment rather than the music, which is actually quite good, certainly as good or better, thanks to the band’s considerable chops, than most Blue-Eyed Soul of the time. I got this three weeks ago in Hythe for a pound.

SAM_0577Not two weeks later, I picked a companion piece at the Ashford bootfair. Alluded to in glowing terms in Edmonds’ brush off, Duane Allman – An Anthology contains a couple previously unreleased Hour Glass tracks, notably a blues medley highly rated by the band, that indicate where the brothers were headed. SAM_0594In addition to a side’s worth of AB highlights, An Anthology also includes songs which feature Duane as sideman, such as Wilson Picket’s “Hey Jude” and Boz Scaggs’ “Lend Me a Dime”.SAM_0595

Published in: on October 6, 2014 at 12:53 pm  Leave a Comment  

Santana (69015) (1971)


(Columbus, Ohio) – As he listened to the exciting sounds of Santana playing “Everything’s Coming Our Way” on the stereo system at Ohio State University campus bar Inorout, area man Andrew Ricart threw his head back and played vigorous ‘air bass’, mimicking the notes of actual Santana bassist David Brown.

Ricart, who’d downed several shots of Jägermeister by this point, was reportedly pleased with his performance, which culminated in the OSU sophomore straddling two chairs while he aimed his ‘air bass’ in a 360° circumnavigation of the area immediately surrounding the public bar and nodded his head as if to say, ‘Yeah, that’s right.’

“Everyone was diggin’ it, especially the ladies,” he slurrily claimed outside DeSantos Kebabs on Lane Avenue later in the evening as he waited for a veggie gyro. “Oh yeah, I totally nailed it, even that double-time bit [sic] towards the end [of the song].”

Others, however, were quick to point out flaws in Ricart’s act: “He was playing with an ‘air pick’, not his fingers,” complained second year law student, Jon Billson. “How lame is that?”SAM_0593Editor’s Note: I already had a re-issue copy of Santana’s eponymous third Lp (confusingly, the first one was also called Santana; hence this one is often referred to as III or, prosaically, Man with an Outstretched Hand), but got rid of it in favour of this 50p bootfair gatefold edition replacement. It’s a very, very good record.

Published in: on October 3, 2014 at 9:45 pm  Comments (2)  

kode9 + the space ape – “kingstown [vox]” b/w “kingstown [dub]” HYP003 (2005)

The first 10" to feature the space ape; Gordon's previous single was under the pseudonym 'daddi g', swapped presumably to avoid confusion with the similarly named chap from Massive Attack.

The first 10″ to feature the space ape; Gordon’s previous single was under the pseudonym ‘daddi g’, swapped presumably to avoid confusion with the similarly named chap from Massive Attack.

Yesterday comes the news that the space ape, aka daddi g, aka Stephen Samuel Gordon has died. The above 10″ was given to me as a birthday present from my friend Nick, late of this parish, and began (along with DMZ’s “Officer”) a half decade immersion in modern electronic music.

I would come home from work at lunch and crank kode9 + the space ape’s single, “Backward” in particualar as a way of clearing the cobwebs, Gordon’s deep apocalyptic and paranoid intonations paradoxically giving me strength to keep going. RIP.

Published in: on October 3, 2014 at 10:33 am  Leave a Comment  

The Replacements – “I Will Dare” b/w “20th Century Boy” and “Hey Good Lookin'” (TTR-8440) (1984)

SAM_0589On the precise 30th (!) anniversary of the ‘Mats breakthrough Let It Be, a reminder of what a buck could get you in the used record store bins (specifically Magnolia Thunderpussy) back in the late 80s.SAM_0590The Bolan cover is arguably better than the original, the Hank, much less so.

Published in: on October 2, 2014 at 3:51 pm  Leave a Comment  

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