Sometimes you take a chance. It’s not quite like the old days when you would stroll through a record store and something would catch your eye: a name, some art. But it’s close, and as I was flipping through the Record Store Drop releases at my local shop I saw the reissue of the sole record from Ann Arbor’s The Rationals. The hype sticker drew me in as much as the colors on the album art: you put the words “Detroit R&B Garage Band” on your sticker and you’re going to hook me. I’m glad it did because it turns out The Rationals delivers precisely on the sticker’s promise: down and dirty rhythm and blues that has a foot firmly in the 60s while calling out to the more rock-centric power the 70s would deliver.
Continue reading “The Rationals: The Rationals (1970)”
If we’re moving a bit faster to get through all these new records coming it, it’s fitting to start with a short EP. Released a few months after his eponymous rocker I reviewed a few weeks ago, Fried Shallots is a brief but pleasant attic cleaning from Ty Segall. Six tracks recorded over the past few years, including two new versions of songs from previous albums. Does categorizing this as a diversion, an odds and ends assortment lessen the enjoyment I get out of it? Not really. If anything it gives a little more insight into the man’s process what works and what doesn’t when you’re working to sequence and build an album.
Continue reading “Ty Segall: Fried Shallots EP (2017)”
This wasn’t the plan. The plan was to review one of the myriad of new albums coming through the door on an almost daily cadence. But here I am, late Monday night, sipping some scotch and digging through my Fanatic books by Henry Rollins building out playlists (said playlists are public and can be found here on Spotify and Apple Music for those inclined to check out some seriously great music) and the need – nay, the urge to listen to Ty Segall came over me. So here we are, with his 2017 eponymous album playing through the speakers, every gnarled guitar lead and garage soaked riff firing up my brain’s pleasure center like an fireworks display at Disney World. I’m shocked there isn’t already a Ty Segall entry on the site, but what better way to introduce the man than Ty Segall, right?
Continue reading “Ty Segall: Ty Segall (2017)”
Roky Erickson is one of those characters that you can’t help but fall into if you have even a passing interest in psychedelic and garage rock. I don’t remember where my first exposure was, but it was probably on one of Henry Rollins’s radio shows. I followed up on his incredible story, checked out his solo debut The Evil One and eventually moved my way back to his groundbreaking first band, the 13th Floor Elevators. A quick instagram reel from my local record shop showed they had gotten the new reissues of the band’s first two albums. I missed on the debut but nabbed the deluxe edition of their masterful second album Easter Everyday, with new remastered mono and stereo versions.
Continue reading “13th Floor Elevators: Easter Everywhere (1967)”
At some point Castle Face Records stopped being the home of Osees (or Oh Sees, or Thee Oh Sees, or OCS, etc.) and became one of the most dependable labels for delivering rock and roll aimed squarely at my brain. Few labels are consistently knocking out great rock that slides effortlessly into psych and prog but somehow John Dwyer keeps finding them and signing them. Case in point: Grave Flowers Bongo Band, who not only embody everything I love about the label on their sophomore record Strength of Spring, but have the added bonus of being produced by another of my favorite artists, Ty Segall. For some that’s a recipe for garage rock disaster; for me it’s buzzed out sonic bliss.
Continue reading “Grave Flowers Bongo Band: Strength of Spring (2021)”