Saturday, June 4, 2011

Odds and Ends

Each week I use this space to post some mini-reviews, cool tracks, random thoughts, neat news, or whatever else I damn well please.

The Brigadier “Holiday Special” [EP] - Our old friend Matt Williams, aka The Brigadier is back with another EP in his seasonal series. This one celebrates summer and is called “Holiday Special”. Things couldn’t start off better than with the beautiful sunny side up spirit of “When The Sun Comes Out”, which contains just enough crunch in the guitar to give the brilliant harmonies a nice little kick. Not only my favorite off this EP, but one of my favorite Brigadier songs. “Swansong” is a pleasantly melancholy goodbye tune while “A Holiday Romance” is a cute island-flavored song. “Ogmore-by-Sea” is an interesting mix of surf and country guitar. Like holidays, all good things must come to an end, and the Brigadier departs for now with an epic, extravagant ballad entitled “Time To Go Home”. Among his most ambitious tunes, “Time To Go Home” oscillates between breezy orchestration and rocking fuzzy guitar breaks. Definitely a few tracks on here going onto my summer playlist. More info here.

Surprise of the week
New research from Australian scientists will convince you to always have some AC/DC handy if you take out your boat into shark-infested waters. Read why here.

New Chickenfoot record in sight? “Chickenfoot’s second album is almost finished, and we’re hoping to mix sometime in June,” says guitarist Joe Satriani. “It is heavier, and better than the first one, and I can’t wait to get it out there!” Read more here.

In related Van Hager news, Sammy Hager and the third Van Halen singer (Gary Cherone, better known as front man for Extreme) will be sharing a stage tonight. Cherone's new band, Hurtsmile, will support Sammy Hagar and the Wabos at Casino Del Sol tonight. Cherone also commented that Extreme is back at work on a new album. The full story is here.

How about some new Pearl Jam? With Eddie Vedder’s solo record out of his system (“Ukulele Songs”), the band is back at work on new material for their tenth album. Read the full report here, and check out this video from Vedder’s solo outing.

Random iPOD song of the week
From her breakthrough record, “I Do Not Want What I Do Not Have”, this definitive breakup song from Sinead O'Connor leaves me with chills every time. This particular performance is also noteworthy as it shows Sinead in rare form – with hair!