Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The 15 Albums That Made Me Who I Am (parts 4 & 5 of a 5 part post)

#11 MEAT BEAT MANIFESTO - Satyricon" (1992)

It was the dawn of the 90's and in addition to working my days away at Soundtraks records I was also now a working Disc Jockey. Both at the clubs (Voodoo) and at radio (WUSB 90.1 in Stonybrook). I remember getting an advance tape from Mute records of the new Meat Beat Manifesto album almost a year before the CD came out. I made many copies for my friends and played the tracks on the radio for my weekly show "Night-Trips". For a while there I thought the album would never come out....then it did. It was so far beyond what the group had accomplished on WAX TRAX, this was not Industrial, not New Wave, but something in between. Jack Dangers was actually SINGING, and he had a almost Dave Gahan tint to his voice. The first single was EDGE OF NO CONTROL , but I think CIRCLES would have been a great single. Here they are, in the promo-only single remixes.

#12 BLUR - "Parklife" (1994) / PULP "Different Class" (1995) tie
Ah....BRIT-POP!! The savior of the 90's. Towards the end of the century it seemed that musical trends were consisting of every genre that had come and gone in the century. Whether it be the re-emergence of Ska music, Swing, Mambo or British invasion Rock And Roll. Most of the bands that came in the wake of Brit-pop are long gone (remember Gene ......anyone?) But the boys that led the way will always be remembered. When PARKLIFE came out in 1994 it was a HUGE success.....in the UK.....in America we were putting crap like Right Said Fred on the top of the charts. It's the time I truly wanted to live overseas because the music was so much better. Just listen to LONDON LOVES or END OF THE CENTURY and then go listen to Boyz II Men or TLC or some other piece of crap that we here in the US had to put up with.......England....you got it right on this one...now, Robbie Williams....uh.....America didn't go for him, so chalk one up for us on that one.

Now PULP on the other hand, they had a very long road to fame. They were a unit in the 80's that just never had the goods to really make it, either at home in the UK or anywhere else. Common People and the "Different Class" album changed all that. Jarvis Cocker was a voice of a generation. Remember how he took the stage during one of Michael "the Molester" Jackson's performances and wiggled his sagging butt at the camera. Was it parody? A statement? Who knows....but it made Pulp heroes to many of us....and as far as I know Jarvis never had to pay a small child millions of dollars to "keep it quiet".....I'm just saying........
Pulp: DISCO 2000 (Single only remix)

#13. THE SCOFFLAWS - Debut CD (1991)

Oh, how I loved the Scofflaws. What fantastic times I had back in the early 90's, when the band would pack a small club like New York Avenue in Huntington and we'd all dance and bounce around while Brooks and the boys would fill our heads with the adventures of Paul Getty and Pee Wee Herman and William Shatner. Their debut stands alone as the definitive work by the Scofflaws. Just gather 'round and listen to their version of Danny Elfman's theme to PEE WEE'S BIG ADVENTURE or the wacky SKA-LA-CARTE.

#14. SPIDER NICK & THE MADDOGS ' Voyage To The Palace Of Kali" (1997)

DUH.......This one is a given, right? How could I not mention the band I was in........I remember thinking to myself that I HAD to have an album out before I hit 30, and I believe the final remastering took place in Oyster Bay (Just Nick and myself) pretty close to my Birthday. Just made it....and who would have think it that a small self financed Ska band from Huntington, Long Island would go on to sell 10,000 copies of a self produced, self financed and self released CD. Just try doing that today. OK, it's true NO ONE can do that TODAY, cause people don't buy CD's anymore, but still it was a great feeling to have articles written about you in Newsday, to have kids ask for your autograph or to play 4 gigs in one day (or 10 gigs a week for that matter). There was only a short time frame when it all added up, but for those few years it was a great place to be. I wouldn't change a thing....'cept for my vocals on MINIMUM WAGE. I should have done another take cause I sound like I'm 5 years old , but other than that I wouldn't change a thing. And if anyone cares, here's a track from July 4th 1996. It was kinda like a pre-production recording, but we soon stopped playing this song live and it never made the album.....it's our cover of THE RETURN OF DJANGO and you won't find it anywhere else. and gee......that leaves us with the final album.....

#15. COLDPLAY - "Viva La Vida Or Death And All His Friends" (2008)

The BEST album released last year, hands down, and perhaps the best of this crappy decade , the 00's or the "ODIES" or whatever they call it.....it was a shit decade as far as music was concerned. And like it or not, These guys ruled it. As much as I LOVED LOVED LOVED A Rush Of Blood To The Head, I have to give props to Chris Martin and the rest of the band for TRYING to go places they haven't gone before. ALMOST Every track on the album is a winner , LOST! is perhaps the greatest song on the record and Viva La Vida will be heard non-stop from now until the Earth explodes in 3 years so there's no need to post that track, but the U2-ish CEMETERIES OF LONDON and the Beatle-y STRAWBERRY SWING are fine fine songs as well. I remember how exciting it was when my Fiance, Mary Beth, won tickets to see them perform a free show at Madison Square Garden in May of 2008. I had never seen them perform and I was not disappointed. I hope to one day see them perform again. I know a lot of people slag off Coldplay for being "soft" or "Popular" or whatever....I say they're just jealous. Coldplay are the real deal. And there you have it......15 albums that pretty much sum up who I am and how I got this way. Life is good....peace