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THE MICRONITE FILTERS-Wizard Blood

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 9, 2014 by TheManicBlogger

11 months after the release of Chasing Ghosts, this Oshawa, On, band released Wizard Blood. With all of the alternative blues-rock stylings I had heard on Ghosts, I assumed that I was in for more of the same on this new release. Sometimes it is nice to be mistaken. This 9 track album on Get Bent Records, produced by the bent brothers, who I suspect are Abel Renton and Dan Reiff, takes the music to places it has not been before.

mf12Keep The Fire Burning Bright“, has a great blues riff and amazing vocals. What a great opening track. It grabs you hard and just won’t let go. The fuzz guitar, and cool harmonica of “Roll On“,  help to create a Mississippi blues tune with a hint of Southern gospel. “Blood On The Flowers” offers a dynamite electric piano solo, great effects, solid drumming, and a very interesting layering of vocals and guitar. The changes and transitions are unexpected and very cool. The haunting vocal track of “Breadcrumbs” enhances the great melody, while the guitar picking and electric piano are wonderful. The rock-blues song “Death Leather Blues” gives us power chords, slide guitar, horns, and an amazing guitar solo. The sound touches on Southern Rock, with its rock beat and blues influences, and I really dig the all-star blues finish. “Whiskey Bottle” is a rock-blues frenzy with psych-rock elements. There are great echo guitar effects, and changes in tempo and time signature. The lyric, “another broken down, bubble gum princess singing out of tune” adds poignancy to the album. Very cool song. The wonderfully melodic instrumentation of “Hellhound On My Trail“, opens up a diverse and complex track. There are great harmonies, beautiful saxophone, and a simple yet powerful solo that, with amazing shades of The Doors, at times. “Po’ Black Maddie” delivers another great blues riff. This song is more mf11up tempo, with nice harmonies. There is a deep south blues coupled with rock elements, that give this a live recording feel.  Despite the somewhat disturbing title, “Blood In My Eyes For You” plays as a rollicking, rocking blues tune that goes on for almost 7 minutes. A sort of Micronite Filters opus! The track has a great rock melody. A well constructed rock song with blues influences. Great drumming, wonderful transitions, and a way cool power rock riff, all combine to make this my favorite track on the album. The electric piano rocks, and the song slows into a dynamite sax solo. A great track with some way cool elements of psych-rock. The song has elements of everything I have listened to over the past 50 years, and it keeps taking me back there. Blood In My Eyes For You should come with a warning: May cause flashbacks.

Ballad Of The Banker’s Son from the Chasing Ghosts album

I like The Micronite Filters. This album seems to be a continuation of the themes of their previous release, showcasing the band’s growth and maturation. I really dig it. Each track feels like an experiment in pushing the limits of their sound. While Chasing Ghosts had me experimenting with this band, Wizard Blood has me addicted.

Check out and purchase all of The Micronite Filters albums.

 

 

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TESS PARKS-Work All Day/Up All Night

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 1, 2013 by TheManicBlogger

tp3I am not really sure what happened, but I suppose that I must have been asleep for the past few years. When I woke, there was Toronto’s own Tess Parks, with an EP, Work All Day/Up All Night released in February 2013, and an LP to be released November 2013. Not certain how I missed this, but boy, am I glad that I found it.

tp1The EP contains 6 incredible tracks destined to soothe your soul and blow your mind. From “Life Is But A Dream“, with its great vocal effects and ethereal guitar, and “Fork Tongue” which gives us an amazing 1967-1969 San Francisco sound with echo and reverb, taking me back to “Psychotic Reaction”. There is a cover of the PsychoticsIf You Don’t Believe Me, Don’t“, which has some of the best reverb guitar I have heard in a long time. “High School” delivers Leonard Cohen like vocals-more spoken than sung, and a sound that seems to have been recorded under water. No, really. Check it out!. “Ego Killer” continues with wonderful vocal and guitar effects, and a very cool riff. In “Spaced On The Commons“, the vocals seem to emanate from under the instrumentation, like a weird dream or a very cool trip. The guitar is again devestatingly cool and there are elements of The Doors, “The End.

tp4Tess Parks & The Good People will be releasing an album, Blood Hot, November 18, 2013. i can’t wait. She is the real deal! Incredibly talented and hot as hell.  I was able to hear “Open Your Mind” from the album and it does not disappoint.  A little rockier than Work All Day/Up All Night, but continuing with the psych-rock sound. More melodic, it has great harmonies and amazing transitions.

The album will be released on Alan McGee’s 359 Music, in association with Cherry Hill Records. For those of you who don’t know, McGee was formerly head of Creation Records and was involved with Jesus and Mary Chain, Primal Scream, and Oasis.  Not bad credentials.

Work All Day/Up All Night is amazing 1960’s Psych-Rock. With an edge. Sort of Psych-Punk. Every track is like a substance induced jam session, and I love it. The layered vocal tracks, shared by Tess and Thom Huhtala, and the varied musical textures create a feeling of weightlessness, of floating. This EP is a flashback for those who were there the 1st time. If you missed it, well, you have another chance. So go ahead. Turn off your mind, relax and float downstream…

http://tessparks.bandcamp.com/

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RTDS

RADIO THAT DOESN’T SUCK. ALL THE TIME.

THE SONG REMAINS THE SAME…

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 24, 2013 by TheManicBlogger

I had spent the better part of a day with a friend, who is certain that Led Zeppelin sits at the right hand of God, discussing music. As his attempts to throw me off my Beatle wagon fell on deaf ears, he resorted to idiocy and asshat-ery. His premise became threaded with examples of Beatle thievery; stealing songs from others and claiming them as their own.  I decided to do some checking into the prevalence of plagiarism in popular music. The findings may surprise you.

george1john1Yes indeed,  George Harrison was found guilty of plagarism.  “My Sweet Lord” was ruled a case of subconscious theft of The ChiffonsHe’s So Fine“.  It cost him a little of $500,000,00 and 75% of the song;s North American sales.  John Lennon‘s “Come Together” was ruled to have plagarized Chuck Berry‘s “You Can’t Catch Me“. Lennon agreed to record 3 more of the writer’s songs as a settlement. Well, John only recorded 2 and the writer sued him. Lennon was ordered to pay $7000.00.

The Doors have been accused of lifting “Hello, I Love You” from The KinksAll Day And All Of The Night“. Staunchly denied by Doors guitarist, Robby Krieger who said that The Doors did lift the drum beat of the song from Cream‘s   Sunshine Of Your Love“.  Johnny Cash‘s “Folsom Prison Blues” is an almost carbon copy of Gordon Jenkins‘ “Crescent City Blues“, which was penned 2 years before Cash wrote his bbsong.  Johnny Cash paid Jenkins about $75,000.00. The Beach Boys‘ “Surfin’ USA” can actually be sung to the Chuck Berry tune “Sweet Little Sixteen“. Brian Wilson admitted to ripping off the melody and Chuck Berry was given co-authorship of the song and a portion of the royalties.

The Rubinoos

The Rubinoos

Other notable mentions include Ray Parker Jr;, writing “Ghostbusters” after stealing the melody from Huey Lewis‘  “I Want A New Drug“; The Oasis song “Whatever” was lifted from Neil Innes‘ “How Sweet To Be An Idiot“; The Rubinoos song   “I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend” was reworked into Avril Lavigne‘s hit “Girlfriend“. And The Rolling Stones‘ “Anybody Seen My Baby?”, lifted from k.d. lang & Ben Mink‘s “Constant Craving” was resolved by giving lang & Mink writing credit. Interesting, but not what I was looking for.

zep

Spirit

Spirit

I had already known that Led Zepplin had ripped off Spirit‘s 1968 song “Taurus” and used it in “Stairway To Heaven” and that Spirit had toured with Led Zepplin in  1969. But there had to be more. And then I found it. An extensive list of Zep-pilfering. “Black Mountain Side“, appearing on the 1st Led Zeppelin album is a traditional English folk song that appears on Bert Jansch‘s 1966 album, Jack Orion as “Blackwaterside“, yet it is credited on the Zeppelin album as a Jimmy Page composition. Pretty slick!!  The same Zepnique was used again on “Babe I’m Gonna Leave You“, written in the 1950s by Anne Bredon (covered by Joan Baez in the 1960s) and credited by Zeppelin as “trad.,arr. Page”. In the 1990s it was changed to give Bredon credit for writing the song. The Led Zeppelin III song, ” Since I’ve Been Loving You” features lyrics taken from the  Moby Grape song “Never“. Is it coincidental that Moby Grape was one of Plant’s favorite bands? HA!

Bobby Parker

Bobby Parker

The guitar riff in “Moby Dick” is a nearly note for note rip-off of Bobby Parker‘s 1961 single, “Watch Your Step“. Jimmy Page was a Parker fan and at one time tried to sign him to Swan Song Records. “In My Time Of Dying“, a traditional blues song that has been recorded by many musicians since the early 1960s, was credited as being written by “Page, Plant, John Paul Jones, John Bonham”.  Great Zepnique. Again. Off of Zeppelin II, “The Lemon Song” borrows heavily from the Howlin’ Wolf song, “Killing Floor“. Credits again attribute the song to Page, Plant, Jones and Bonham. Another Zeppelin II song, “Bring It On Home” was written by Willie Dixon. However Willie Dixon was not given writing credit and Led Zeppelin was sued for copyright infringement. The case was settled out of court.

Jake Holmes

Jake Holmes

Whole Lotta Love“, again from Zeppelin II and the band’s 1st hit single, is not an original composition as the album credits originally claimed. The lyrics were taken from Willie Dixon’s “You Need Love” and this was settled out of court. Released on Zeppelin’s 1st album, “Dazed And Confused” was originally credited as being written by Jimmy Page. However, this is not the case. It was originally written by folk singer Jake Holmes who opened for The Yardbirds while Page was a member. Page arranged a version of it for The Yardbirds but he didn’t record a studio version until 1969 with Led Zeppelin. HA!

So there it is. There are many other cases of plagiarism in music, far too many to mention. This is not intended to slam Led Zeppelin but rather to ask my pal, Mr. K. is Led Zeppelin really a farce as implied on Howard Stern  or just the greatest cover band in music history? In any event, there you have it, my friend. Thievery, pilfering, song snatching, whatever you wish to call it, seems to run rampant on the Zeppelin. Should we start to question if the Zeppelin is actually theirs?

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THE MICRONITE FILTERS-Chasing Ghosts

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 15, 2013 by TheManicBlogger

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There are blues bands, and then there are The Micronite Filters. As a follow up to their 2012 Ep,” The Wrong Side Of The Tracks“, this Oshawa, Ontario band went to the Mississippi hills to record their album. Produced by the legendary Jimbo Mathus and released on the independent label, Get Bent Records, “Chasing Ghosts” contains 10 tracks that redefine blues music.

The Ballad Of The Banker’s Son” has stand out vocals, slide guitar and an unforgettable bridge immersed in rock overtones . “Here She Comes Runnin’“, a Mississippi blues song if ever there was one, has herky-jerky instrumentation during the verse and then settles in the chorous. The band’s ability to play with time signatures is distinctly evident in this song. The title track, “Chasing Ghosts“, incorporates horns with guitar underlays. The saxophone is perfectly placed within the battalion style drumming.  The  bluesy vocals and eloquent melody line of “Ladies Man Blues” are accompanied only by harmonica, trombone and bass drum, and it sounds amazing.  In “Rambler’s Lament“, the rock melody is contrasted by blues guitar with echo effects and feedback. “Train Robbers”, another rock song, swirls amid blues music with a melody line that reminds me of T-Rex’s 20th Century Boy a great guitar solo and beautifully incorporated saxophone. The live recording feel of “When The Lonesome Whistle Blows” creates the perfect backdrop for the twangy steel guitar which emulates the vocal melody line. ” Hit The Hammer On The Nail“, gives us rock chords and blues rhythms, an amazing female vocal line, piano riffs and spectacular drum runs. “Walking Dead Man” has beautiful bell tones playing in the background. The drums are used to accentuate the vocal phrasing, while the fullness of the production creates a very powerful track. My vote for best song on the mf1album: “The Exile And The Canary“, a remarkable rock/blues/psychedelic journey into the Mississippi hills. The electric organ and drums make me think of The Doors until the song changes tempo and direction. The screaming guitars with rock riffs, the echo effect and the haunting vocals made me realize that this isn’t just any ordinary album.

The Micronite Filters are not just another blues band.  The music is raw, gritty, powerful, soulful and infectious. The songs are masterfully crafted. “Chasing Ghosts” is an exceptional album, which should be a contender for Indie Album Of The Year.

To listen to The Micronite Filters, follow the link below:

http://themicronitefilters.bandcamp.com/

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