Archive for brian wilson

MY WORLD GOES POP

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 10, 2013 by TheManicBlogger

My venture into popular music began with an uncle, 10 years my senior, who was entrenched in the girl groups of the early 1960s. The first songs I remember listening to were the delightfully unsophisticated  “My Boyfriend’s Back” by The Angels, ” He’s A Rebel” by The Crystals and The Chiffons’He’s So Fine“.   I spent numerous hours ingesting  the harmonies and the melody lines of these and other pop classics.

The Ronettes

The Ronettes

And just when I thought I had heard all there was to hear, I discovered The Ronettes. They were amazing. Insanely different. Veronica Bennett, her sister Estelle and her cousin Nedra Talley created a sound so different than anything I had heard before. It was Ronnie’s (Veronica) voice that drew me in. It was Phil Spector‘s production and the now infamous Wall Of Sound that kept me there. ‘Baby I Love You” and “Be My Baby”  kept me listening over and over again. I got my own 45 of “Be My Baby”. I played it and played it. I drummed along with it on pots and pans. I knew every nuance of the song. musically and vocally. I adored Ronnie’s voice and her vocal inflections. I  still do. The power of her voice  blows me away. And so began my epic adventure with rock and roll.

I heard The Beatles many times on the radio before I saw them on The Ed Sullivan Show. It was then that I knew I wanted to be, no, needed to be a musician. I wanted to make music. I wanted to be a Beatle.  A plot was hatched to dispose of Ringo. Why not? I was quite proficient on the pots and pans, and how much different could the drums be? I wanted to be a drummer. I asked for drums for my birthday, and I got a guitar. What the hell. I learned to play and began writing songs.

I dove in to the British Invasion, headfirst. I spent years harboring vinyl from across the ocean. Listening to The Dave Clark 5, The Hollies, whose harmonies were some of the most complex I had heard, and The Kinks, who wrote incredible pop songs and played them like a rock band,  allowed me to intercept the North American bands who were now emulating the British sound. And so, Tommy James and The Shondells, The Grass Roots,  and The Lovin’ Spoonful were added to my ever growing list of must have vinyl. The Beach Boys were added when I heard Pet Sounds. “God Only Knows” is a remarkable song . The harmonies are deep and full. Changes in tempo and time signature reflect Brian Wilson‘s genius. I was set. I was in pop paradise. In 1966-67, as The Beatles experimented with psychedelica, I did as well,  finding  gems in  Blues Image, Spirit, and a host of other insanely talented bands.

The Pretenders

The Pretenders

On my 13th birthday, I received my own drum kit. I had fallen ass backwards into Progressive Rock and was living and breathing Yes; amazing musicians, with the ability to incorporate so many different melodies, time signatures and themes into one perfectly crafted work. Yes led me to King Crimson, Flash and inevitably to Pink Floyd, who made the complex seem simple and the simple sound complete. . How cool was that?  I started a band, but I just couldn’t shake my passion for pop. My fondness for Pagliaro, 5 Man Electrical Band, and Badfinger, created the sound and direction of my musical psyche. New Wave delivered Nick Lowe, Elvis Costello, and The Pretenders. One of my all time favorite bands,The Pretenders were pure pop. Unforgettable melody lines, great hooks, amazingly simple yet catchy riffs permeated each song. And Chrissy Hynde looked so cool holding a guitar.

Gotta Have Pop

Gotta Have Pop

To satisfy my passion, I have always looked for new artists playing pop. Over the years I have found The Pursuit Of Happiness, The Bob Segarini Band, and Sloan. Segarini is pop genius. His ability to hear the music long before it is ever played sets him out as one of the truly great pop song writers. Once referred to as the Canadian Nick Lowe, Segarini’s Gotta Have Pop  is a classic . I have, more recently found some amazing talent out there in bands named The Creekside Strays, The Micronite Filters, The Research Turtles,  Toxic Melons and The Toniks. There are so many more that I have yet to discover. I can hardly wait! Recently a friend of mine who travels The Oregon Trail looking for new music introduced me to No Small Children. I have just started my auditory stalking of this band so any verdict at this time would be premature. He rarely steers me wrong. I will go on record as saying that they have something, and I suspect it is highly contagious as I can’t seem to stop listening. My fondness for all music lies in  melodies and harmonies. It began with the girl vocal groups and is as strong today as it ever was.

https://icantbelievemyearz.wordpress.com/2013/05/28/review-archives/

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TOXIC MELONS

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 29, 2013 by TheManicBlogger

When my friend Frank Gutch, Jr. tells me to listen to something, I listen. Toxic Melons, one of Frank’s latest finds are not Canadian. So I have amended policy and annexed Great Britain. For the purpose of this review, Toxic Melons, if only for a short while, are a Canadian band.

“International Accident”, thtme EP follow up to the Toxic Melons debut album, “Melon Jam”, contains four tracks of power pop perfection.

Conceived by Paul Fairbairn, there are no band members. A varied group of extremely talented friends and musical guests play on this EP with incredible results. Fairbairn himself, writes, arranges and produces all of the material with the musical sensibilities of Brian Wilson and the irreverence of Andy Partridge. Fairbairn is eclectic, if not eccentric! He believes that he can do what he wants regardless of how unconventional it is, and he has the ability to make it work.

International Accident opens with “Diffidence“, a melancholy song that seems to follow no formula. The use of cymbals and tmep2blistering guitar work have one wondering what to expect next. “Passing Reflection“, written about the problems facing our world, presents us with acoustic guitar, keyboards, strings and a xylephone and  places us deep  in Toxic Melons’ world. “Ode to Procrastination” featuring Eric Dove, of Jellyfish fame, is a power-pop/rock song with a a touch of madness created by the unusual harmonies, choral sounds and quirky organ playing. We are treated to “Alex’s Song“, a short accappella piece with unforgettabable harmonies. No detail is overlooked here. International Accident contains imaginative songs with sophisticated arrangements and unforgettably catchy melodies. With the unconvential writing style and advanced production values Toxic Melons sound like no one else. International Accident is a fun listen. It surprises, excites and entertains. It is insanely good!

To hear Toxic Melons, click on the link below

http://www.reverbnation.com/play_now/song_15080732

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