WORD OF MOUTH: OTHER MUSIC

by kevin diamond (banner photo by mel mccue)

Ever since I was a teenager, I’ve been hooked on that feeling you get, creeping into the old, musty, dusty, mom-and-pop record shop, pouring over the hastily typed reviews of new albums taped up under the “Staff Picks” section, and selecting a few of them for purchase. It’s like jumping into the frozen ocean without dipping your toe in first, or taking a bite of a new food you can’t even pronounce. Allow me to share my results from time to time in this new section: Word of Mouth. This week, I visit Other Music.

RELEASE BY SHE KEEPS BEES:

SHE KEEPS BEES: NESTS

GIMMIE BY SHE KEEPS BEES:

What a delightful disk. Definitely the best pick out of the three. The fawning praise that Other Music threw at this band was not empty hype. This is duo is like a reverse White Stripes: She’s the multi-instrumentalist/singer, he’s the drummer. Her voice sounds at times like Janis Joplin and other times like Chan Marshell. It’s often double tracked, and carries her woozy melodies and bluesy harmonies beautifully. I think this disc is self-released, so it may be hard to find. Other Music definitely carries it (they seem to be store favorites) and I’m sure it’s available on line. If you come across it, pick it up, no questions asked.

DAVID VANDERVELDE: WAITING FOR THE SUNRISE

I WILL BE FINE BY DAVID VANDERVELDE:

A bit starchy, a bit 70′s AM pop, for my taste. The recommendation said his first album was influenced heavily by David Bowie, whereas this one was influenced more by Lindsay Buckingham. Perhaps I should have taken that as a warning. It’s not horrible, but unmemorable. Since picking this up, I’ve seen him mentioned on many blogs, so I’ll hazard to guess I’d read about him before and just forgot. He just did a cover of Singer/Songwriter from The Stand Ins by Okkervil River, so he’s got good taste. Pick up if you’re feelin’ breezy.

THE LOLLIPOP SHOPPE: JUST COLOUR

YOU MUST BE A WITCH BY THE LOLLIPOP SHOPPE:

I’m always looking for a good re-issue. This one from psychedelic garage rock band The Lollipop Shoppe is pretty decent. The liner notes are interesting, though the sound quality of the recordings feels a bit lacking, could have used a nice remaster. It would probably be better on vinyl, as most recordings from this era are, and would benefit from being played in Mono as well. The music is what you’d expect from the times: Blues influenced, psychedelic, howling vocals, guitar solos. It’s a nice compliment to your Nuggets box set.

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