R.I.P. JOE COCKER (1944-2014)

Cocker

Hey Joe… rest in peace, Dude!

Read The Guardian’s obituary

Listen/Watch some classic performances:
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Download some essential Cocker:

Rock’n’Roll Ain’t Noise Pollution [Mixtapes]

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Voodoo Child!

Hey there, cyber wanderers, here’s a bunch of compilations I’ve put together, High Fidelity style, which gathers in digital musical boxes some of my favorite Rock’n’Roll songs ever. Pump up the volume and enjoy these several proofs that AC/DC was damn right by shouting, at the end of Back in Black, that rock’n’roll ain’t noise pollution! I’ve mixed together oldies/classics and contemporary stuff, both for the sake of diversity and to highlight how alive and kicking rock music, in its panoply of forms, still is nowadays. For more than 60 cyber-selections of music I cherish and usually play around with – including Jazz, Blues, Classical, Brazilian and so on and so forth… – check my 8 tracks profile. Cheers!

01) LED ZEPPELIN, “Communication Breakdown”
02) THE BEATLES, “Revolution”
03) BUFFALO SPRINGFIELD, “For What It’s Worth”
04) RIVAL SONS, “All The Way”
05) TREAT HER RIGHT, “I Think She Likes Me”
06) RANCID, “The 11th Hour”
07) TEENAGE FANCLUB, “I Don’t Want Control Of You”
08) JANIS JOPLIN, “Me and Bobby McGee”
09) THE WALLFLOWERS, “Passenger”
10) THE DISTILLERS, “The Hunger”

01. THE BEATLES, “Golden Slumbers/Carry That Weight/The End”
02. THE WHO, “The Seeker”
03. LED ZEPPELIN, “Gallows Pole”
04. THE KNICKERBOXERS, “Lies”
05. THE SONICS, “Strychnine”
06. THE REMAINS, “Don’t Look Back”
07. CHOCOLATE WATCHBAND, “Are You Gonna Be There”
08. THE STANDELLS, “Dirty Water”
09. THE COUNT FIVE, “Psychotic Reactions”
10. LOVE, “7 and 7 Is”
11. ELECTRIC PRUNES, “I Had Too Much To Dream Last Nite”
12. THE STRANGELOVES, “Night Time”
13. JIMI HENDRIX, “Foxy Lady”

01) BLACK CROWES, “Hard to Handle”
02) SUSAN TEDESCHI & DOUBLE TROUBLE, “Rock and Roll” (Led Zeppelin Cover)
03) AC/DC, “Shot Down in Flames”
04) THE CLASH, “Brand New Cadillac”
05) DEEP PURPLE, “Strange Kind of Woman”
06) BIG STAR, “Don’t Lie to Me”
07) PATTI SMITH, “Rock and Roll Nigger”
08) BLACK MOUNTAIN, “Hair Song”
09) THE BEATLES, “Can’t Buy Me Love”
10) WILCO, “Casino Queen”
11) STROKES, “Reptilia”
12) T REX, “Rock On”

01) THEM CROOKED VULTURES, “New Fang”
02) JAPANDROIDS, “The Nights of Wine and Roses”
03) BEN HARPER, “Black Rain”
04) BLACK MOUNTAIN, “Rollercoaster”
05) JULIETTE & THE LICKS, “Hot Kiss”
06) PEARL JAM, “State of Love and Trust”
07) ARCADE FIRE, “Keep the Car Running”
08) BLITZEN TRAPPER, “Gold for Bread”
09) BORIS, “Dyna-Soar”
10) YEAH YEAH YEAHS, “Date With The Night”

Pump up the volume & watch Jeff Buckley’s full concert in Chicago, 1995. What an awe-inspiring musician!

Chicago

Live at Cabaret Metro in Chicago is a live DVD by Jeff Buckley, recorded on May 13, 1995 at Cabaret Metro during the Mystery White Boy tour.

Tracks:

  • “Dream Brother” (Jeff Buckley, Mick Grondahl, Matt Johnson)
  • “Lover, You Should’ve Come Over” (Jeff Buckley)
  • “Mojo Pin” (Jeff Buckley, Gary Lucas)
  • “So Real” (Jeff Buckley, Michael Tighe)
  • “Last Goodbye” (Jeff Buckley)
  • “Eternal Life (Jeff Buckley)
  • “Kick Out the Jams” (MC5)
  • “Lilac Wine” (James Shelton)
  • “What Will You Say” (Jeff Buckley, Carla Azar, Chris Dowd)
  • “Grace” (Jeff Buckley, Gary Lucas)
  • “Vancouver” (instrumental) (Jeff Buckley, Mick Grondahl, Michael Tighe)
  • “Kanga Roo” (Big Star)
  • “Hallelujah” (Leonard Cohen)

Bonus material (click links below to watch)

Personnel:

Jeff Buckley – vocals, guitar
Michael Tighe – guitar
Mick Grondahl – bass guitar
Matt Johnson – drums

“Forever Changes” (1967), by Love, a classic gem of the Sixties Psychedelic scene in L.A.

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Cheers, fellow earthlings! Here’s one of the greatest musical journeys of the Sixties and certainy one of my favorite albums from the “Hippie” era, Love’s Forever Changes. Read an excellent review by Mark Deming and then pump up the volume and press play to trip through this entrancing soundscapes!…

“Love’s Forever Changes made only a minor dent on the charts when it was first released in 1967, but years later it became recognized as one of the finest and most haunting albums to come out of the Summer of Love, which doubtless has as much to do with the disc’s themes and tone as the music, beautiful as it is. Sharp electric guitars dominated most of Love’s first two albums, and they make occasional appearances here on tunes like “A House Is Not a Motel” and “Live and Let Live,” but most of Forever Changes is built around interwoven acoustic guitar textures and subtle orchestrations, with strings and horns both reinforcing and punctuating the melodies. The punky edge of Love’s early work gave way to a more gentle, contemplative, and organic sound on Forever Changes, but while Arthur Lee and Bryan MacLean wrote some of their most enduring songs for the album, the lovely melodies and inspired arrangements can’t disguise an air of malaise that permeates the sessions. A certain amount of this reflects the angst of a group undergoing some severe internal strife, but Forever Changes is also an album that heralds the last days of a golden age and anticipates the growing ugliness that would dominate the counterculture in 1968 and 1969; images of violence and war haunt “A House Is Not a Motel,” the street scenes of “Maybe the People Would Be the Times or Between Clark and Hillsdale” reflects a jaded mindset that flower power could not ease, the twin specters of race and international strife rise to the surface of “The Red Telephone,” romance becomes cynicism in “Bummer in the Summer,” the promise of the psychedelic experience decays into hard drug abuse in “Live and Let Live,” and even gentle numbers like “Andmoreagain” and “Old Man” sound elegiac, as if the ghosts of Chicago and Altamont were visible over the horizon as Love looked back to brief moments of warmth. Forever Changes is inarguably Love’s masterpiece and an album of enduring beauty, but it’s also one of the few major works of its era that saw the dark clouds looming on the cultural horizon, and the result was music that was as prescient as it was compelling.” – MARK DENING

Side A
1. Alone again or 00:00
2. A house is not a motel 03:16
3. Andmoreagain 06:48
4. The daily planet 10:06
5. Old man 13:38
6. The red telephone 16:40

Side B
1. Maybe the people would be the times or between Clark and Hilldale 21:31
2. Live and let live 25:05
3. The good humor man, he sees everything like this 30:32
4. Bummer in the summer 33:40
5. You set the scene 36:04

The History of Rock ‘N’ Roll in 1 Song: Jimi Hendrix’s “Voodoo Child”

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The History of Rock ‘N’ Roll in 1 Song

In his new book, Greil Marcus brings us The History of Rock ’n’ Roll in Ten Songs. But rock only needs one—Jimi Hendrix’s 1968 “Voodoo Child (Slight Return).” – by James Parker at The Atlantic
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The great Greil Marcus, whose rock-critical illuminations—in books like Mystery Train and Lipstick Traces—sent stroboscopic shafts into the black forest of my early manhood, is about to publish a volume titled The History of Rock ‘n’ Roll in Ten Songs.

So naturally my first thought was: I bet I can do it in five.

jmiAnd my next thought was: Nah. Five songs is too many. And also too few. Five is a clutter, a randomness, a gallimaufry.  If it’s not going to be 10, it’s got to be one. The history of rock ‘n’ roll in one song.

And if you want a song that does it all—that includes tradition, the future, outer space, electricity, armageddon, death/rebirth and the first stirrings of music itself—then there really is only one song: “Voodoo Child (Slight Return)” by the Jimi Hendrix Experience.

To write about the sound of Jimi Hendrix, the actualnoise of him? Wow. There’s a theme to beggar your lexicon and freeze you at the frontiers of sense. Still, what’s writing for, if not to fling itself at the unwriteable? So here we go. It’s axiomatic, really: All art aspires to the condition of music, and all music aspires to the condition of Jimi Hendrix.

Plucked out of New York by manager/impresario Chas Chandler, he arrives in London in September 1966, lone guitarist, lanky acid popinjay, sci-fi African-American with Irish-Cherokee blood, his manners almost courtly, his speech a sing-song sequence of half-groans, groovy hesitations, delicate chuckles, fond suggestions and trailing colors, a kind of elasticized stammer. His physical presence is dramatic but somehow only partially materialized—at his edges he seemed to blur into fumes, mental incense. Behind him, for a rhythm section, Chandler puts two Brits: pasty Noel Redding, pudding-faced Mitch Mitchell. An incongruity, a mis-Mitch? Miraculously, not at all. Redding, a lapsed guitarist, is a beautiful primal bore on bass: his earth-snooze, his rooted elemental buzz, will be at the heart of this (new term) “power trio.” Mitchell, meanwhile, is jazz-demented, Elvin Jones-worshipping, breeding polyrhythms in a cymbal-wash of teenbeat frenzy—perhaps the only drummer in England capable of tracking his singer/guitarist into the Hendrixian sound-world.

axisboldasloveAnd that sound-world, as it touches down in Swinging London, is already fully formed. Blues-ghosts electrically summoned, interstellar turbulence; fringed-with-incineration flights and passages of liquid gentleness; a technique that combines towering phallic exhibition with an uncanny, almost ego-less surrender to the possibilities of his instrument. These possibilities converge in the Jimi Hendrix Experience. Having stroked and pelvically jostled his guitar to a state of glimmering, agonized sensitivity, he sculpts the resulting feedback with his shoulders and extra-large hands—while Noel drones massively and nods his Afro and Mitch swarms across his tom-toms. His solos can be astral dramas or inside jokes. At his feet the pale cohort of London guitar heroes—Beck, Page, Townshend—turns paler still. Eric Clapton’s hand, as he lights his cigarette after a Hendrix show, is shaking. (Apocryphal story. But beautiful, and therefore true.) Technology is Hendrix’s medium: amplification, overdrive, the latest gear, the only-just-invented. Roger Mayer, who will design for him the Fuzz Face and Octavia effects pedals, has a background in naval intelligence, testing underwater acoustics. We’ll hold hands and then we’ll watch the sunrise/ From the bottom of the sea. (“Are You Experienced?”)

Hendrix writes whooshing, crazily orchestrated hippie rock with spikes of Dylanoid sense-reversal, but what he is, fundamentally, is a bluesman. As an itinerant R&B guitar-slinger in the early ‘60s he freelanced for (among others) Little Richard and Curtis Knight, acquiring road sweats, road smarts, screaming showmanship, existential momentum. The blues are his school and his laboratory, the spine of his wildness. And he doesn’t just play the blues, Jimi Hendrix has the blues: On at least a portion of his prismatic personality the blues are clanging down all day, a hail of Bibles and grand pianos. It’s one of the more lethal ironies of his art—that in the midst of multicolored stormings, and from an apparent zenith of creativity, he continually confesses his numbness, his down-ness, his separation from himself. My heart burns with feeling, oh but my mind is cold and reeling … No sun coming through my window, feel like I’m living at the bottom of a grave … Manic depression has captured my soul …Because he’s a bluesman, his pain is a historical burden. At a show at Berkeley in 1970 he acknowledges the Black Panthers and then dedicates “I Don’t Live Today”—existing, nothing but existing—to “all the cats that are trying to struggle, that are going to make it anyway.” But his pain is also private. His childhood was rank with neglect; motherless Seattle winters that turned the infant Hendrix blue with cold. “I don’t think they [critics] understand my songs,” he tells a (possibly rather startled) interviewer in 1968. “They live in a different world. My world—that’s hunger, it’s the slums, raging race hatred, and happiness you can hold in your hand, nothing more!”

What else can you hold in your hand? Infinity, according to the visionary lineage of which Hendrix is undoubtedly a part. “To see the world in a grain of sand,” wrote William Blake, “And heaven in a wild flower/ Hold infinity in the palm of your hand/ And eternity in an hour.” Hendrix half-quotes Blake’s preface toMilton, in the manner that he might half-quote an Elmore James riff, on 1968’sElectric Ladyland, during the 15-minute galactic blues jam “Voodoo Chile:” “Say my arrows are made of desire, desire/ From as far away as Jupiter’s sulphur mines.” Mixing old tropes—the blood-red moon, the gypsy’s curse—with space-age lyrical junk, “Voodoo Chile” is a kind of bluesman’s “Ancient Mariner,” an imperiled soul-voyage up and down the neck of the guitar. Steve Winwood’s Hammond organ spookily swirls, and Hendrix takes us on what the critic Charles Shaar Murray calls “virtually a chronological guided tour of blues styles, starting with earliest recorded Delta blues and travelling through the electric experiments of Muddy Waters in Chicago and John Lee Hooker in Detroit to the sophisticated swing of B.B. King and the cosmic blurt of John Coltrane.”

“Voodoo Child (Slight Return)” is the final track onElectric Ladyland, and structurally a reprise in double-time of “Voodoo Chile.” But it is as if the electrified compression of the earlier, longer piece has forced Hendrix through another level of change, and he hails us now—in ringing, supernaturally authorized tones—from the far side of transformation. The intro, those snickering accents flicked from deadened strings, is almost pre-musical—it sounds like something scratching at the inside of an eggshell. Tentative at first, it resolves into a rhythm: aboriginal, radical. Dub from the back of a cave. Miles Davis hears it and falls over backward into a pile of ‘70s funk guitarists. The melody is announced, in notes opulent with wah-wah; Mitch Mitchell flexes his hi-hat; then, with a rattlesnake shake of maracas, Hendrix takes the snarling plunge into distortion—tuned down, E7 sharp 9, the “Hendrix chord.” Noel Redding meets him on the bottom string; rock and roll gapes at the impact, heavy metal kicks at the womb-wall. After three bars the guitar rears up, pluming monstrously with energy; after four Hendrix time-travels, flipping his toggle switch back and forth to create a sound like passing space-freight. Well I stand up next to a mountain, he sings, his voice supremely doubled by his instrument, chop it down with the edge of my hand. No more passivity, acid overwhelmings; no more hanging in the purple haze, not knowing if you’re going up or down. The mind-fragments have formed a new shape. Pick up the pieces and make an island... Noel Redding is rumbling fixatedly; Mitch Mitchell has forsaken his customary top-of-the-kit clattering and fluttering for a kickdrum-driven, Bonhamesque downbeat. If I don’t meet you no more in this world, I’ll meet you in the next one, don’t be late. Farsightedness, death-prophecy, transdimensional challenge—Hendrix is standing outside of music. The mix pans wildly, desperately, as if overwhelmed by its own information, sizzling up into near-deafness before widening downward in a welter of noise.

We haven’t caught up to this yet. We’re limping after it with handfuls of melted fuses. It’s too much, still.

Jimi-Hendrix

Rage Against The Machine: remember their bombastic debut, a groundbreaking Musical Molotov Cocktail…

01 Bombtrack

02 Killing in the Name

03 Take the Power Back

04 Settle for Nothing

05 Bullet in the Head

06 Know Your Enemy

07 Wake Up

08 Fistful of Steel

09 Township Rebellion

10 Freedom

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Review by Eduardo Rivadavia @ AMG ALL MUSIC GUIDE

“Probably the first album to successfully merge the seemingly disparate sounds of rap and heavy metal, Rage Against the Machine’s self-titled debut was groundbreaking enough when released in 1992, but many would argue that it has yet to be surpassed in terms of influence and sheer brilliance — though countless bands have certainly tried. This is probably because the uniquely combustible creative relationship between guitar wizard Tom Morello and literate rebel vocalist Zack de la Rocha could only burn this bright, this once. While the former’s roots in ’80s heavy metal shredding gave rise to an inimitable array of six-string acrobatics and rhythmic special effects (few of which anyone else has managed to replicate), the latter delivered meaningful rhymes with an emotionally charged conviction that suburban white boys of the ensuing nu-metal generation could never hope to touch. As a result, syncopated slabs of hard rock insurrection like “Bombtrack,” “Take the Power Back,” and “Know Your Enemy” were as instantly unforgettable as they were astonishing. Yet even they paled in comparison to veritable clinics in the art of slowly mounting tension such as “Settle for Nothing,” “Bullet in the Head,” and the particularly venomous “Wake Up” (where Morello revises Led Zeppelin’s “Kashmir” riff for his own needs) — all of which finally exploded with awesome power and fury. And even listeners who were unable (or unwilling) to fully process the band’s unique clash of muscle and intellect were catered to, as RATM were able to convey their messages through stubborn repetition via the fundamental challenge of “Freedom” and their signature track, “Killing in the Name,” which would become a rallying cry of disenfranchisement, thanks to its relentlessly rebellious mantra of “Fuck you, I won’t do what you tell me!” Ultimately, if there’s any disappointment to be had with this near-perfect album, it’s that it still towers above subsequent efforts as the unequivocal climax of Rage Against the Machine’s vision. As such, it remains absolutely essential.”

The First Mammal To Wear Pants – Three Animations About Delirious Anthropocentrism

1) Steve Cutt‘s Man (2002)
Music: “In the Hall of the Mountain King” by Edvard Grieg  (1843 – 1907),
Peer Gynt Suite (based on Ibsen’s play)

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2) Pearl Jam’s Do The Evolution (1998)
From the album YieldVideo directed by Todd McFarlane & Kevin Altieri.

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3)  Bruno Bozzetto’s Allegro Non Troppo (1977) 
Music by Maurice Ravel, “Boléro”