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Results tagged “Columbia Records” from Rockin' Roll Call

Rock 'n' Roll Call: The Wallflowers - Glad All Over

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Glad All Over

The Wallflowers are much like the Dave Clark 5 used to be - "Glad All Over" and it's on Columbia. This one forces me to use the obvious pun, "I'm glad it's over" but this one really doesn't go anywhere as the band has taken their name for a world view on a series of interchangeable and forgettable examples of lite rock. Only "It's A Dream" shows much of an awareness of a hook.

Rock 'n' Roll Call: The Vaccines - Come Of Age

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Come Of Age

The Vaccines are back with a second dose of pleasurable power pop - that would be "Come Of Age" and it's on Columbia Records. Last year's debut, I thought, was the best album of 2011 - this one's not that good but it's pretty darn close. It's a series of jumpy, pogo pop three minute chiming guitar songs smartly done with cool vocals by Justin Young on tunes such as "Teenage Icon," while "I Wish I Was A Girl" doesn't make a lot of sense but it sounds good - sort of Mitt Romney's performance in the first debate. This band also kicked ass at this year's Coachella back in the spring, so no sophomore jinx for them as the Vaccines still have the cure for bad music.

Rock 'n' Roll Call: Band of Horses - Mirage Rock

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Mirage Rock

"Mirage Rock" is the latest from Band of Horses and it's on mighty, mighty Columbia Records. This is album Number Four from Ben Bridwell and his pards, playing hook-filled indie/college rock. This Seattle band is all over the place and all of them are places your ears will want to be. "Knock Knock" sounds like they're channeling the 1966-era Beach Boys and "Electric Music" sounds like the Dead and "Dumpster World," there but for a break either way, could be all our futures. You may hear a bit of Wilco and some Avett Brothers and all those Americana bands we love, sufficient to get Mr. Ed, Pegasus, Trigger and Secretariat hoofing up a hullabaloo in the stable.

Rock 'n' Roll Call: Bob Dylan - The Tempest

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The new Bob Dylan album is "The Tempest,"and as usual, it's on mighty, mighty Columbia Records. This is #35 for the 71-year-old Bob who must not only deal with the daily weight of just Being Bob - how many thousands of kids are named Dylan - but still rocking out as well. His voice is gnarlier than ever - as if he's gargling sandpaper and razor blades as he channels Louis Armstrong in Tom Waits' garage, but his band - no surprise - tears it up. Not sure who the guitar player is on "Narrow Way," but that one's the rocker. There's also a long 14 minute telling of the Titanic's last voyage and this one ends with Bob's take on the senseless murder of the first Beatle to go, "Roll On John." It's still Bob - the guy that gave us "Who Killed Davey More," "The Masters of War," and "Tombstone Blues" and so many more, but not sure how many times you'll want to listen to this one for fun. Then again, we should live so long and rock even half as hard as Bob who is what's really going on.

Rock 'n' Roll Call: John Mayer - Born And Raised

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Born and Raised

First up, John Mayer has a new one - that would be "Born And Raised" and it's on mighty, mighty Columbia Records. It's pretty easy to hear why Mayer is a top tier performer - this guy is a kick-ass songwriter on top of his game on this one that'll make the Top Five on the year end list - at least. The opener, the ever clever, "Queen of California," is all about missing that pesky ex but not wanting her to know and "Shadow Days" is getting over that ubiquitous Miss Take. Mayer is as sad as Rhett Miller and just as clever with a telling phrase that'll have you nodding in that been-there-done-that moment and he deals most convincingly with those ever embarrassing horn dog urges aimed at your pal's squeeze as on "Something Like Olivia." Then there's "Walt Grace's Submarine Test, January 1967," a mindbender of a tune just right for another Johnny Depp part in another weird and wonderful Tim Burton movie. Great writing, swell voice on perfect songs - Mayer is as good as it gets.

Rock 'n' Roll Call: Passion Pit - Gossamer

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The new Passion Pit is called "Gossamer" and it's on Columbia Records. This one's all over the place - strident vocals and some lame mid-life crisis-too-early lyrics as on "Take A Walk." Passion Pit, once upon a time, slang for a drive-in - I believe none survive in Ventura County. That's too bad because a drive-in was the place to watch a movie from your car and where high school kids earned extra credit in Grope 101. Anyway, Passion Pit is the brainchild of frontman Mike Angelakos, who, once upon a time, did it all with just his keyboards, but now, his songs are embellished by the band that is made up of Berklee College of Music grads, whom not surprisingly perform flawlessly, on what are basically, dippy disco tunes.

Take a Walk by passionpit

Rock 'n' roll call: Manchester Orchestra - Simple Math

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Simple Math

This one's also on Columbia but it's from last year and I'm just getting around to it - that would be Manchester Orchestra and don't tell your math teacher, but the album is "Simple Math," and it rocks in all the ways we want indie bands to do just that. Frontman Andy Hull has the band all over the place, but always most competently as they show off their musical grasp of good songs full of stream of conscious lyrics - some funny wise-guy wise, other head scratchers from left field - all with sterling vocals. The title tune is a gem. Let me put it to you this way: I just bought their first two albums on Amazon. Even though they're from Atlanta, these guys are worthy of their British predecessors from Manchester such as New Order, the Stone Roses, Oasis and the Smiths.

Rock 'n' roll call: One Direction - Up All Night

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Up All Night

That cat-scaring cacophony is probably all those tweener teeny bopper girls screaming at their new temporarily pretend significant others - the boy toys in One Direction - the album is "Up All Night" and it's on Columbia and the direction is straight to the bank. Imagine a nation of Biebers - if one is good - why not five of those squeaky clean Brits? They only want to hold your daughter's hand, still believe in puppy love, are totally paper trained and fully as dangerous as whistling in the backyard, and best of all - they can really sing. These dudes were on "The X Factor," but didn't make the cut individually, but they prove once again, that the whole is greater than the sum of the parts on these supremely concocted pop rock confections, so sweet, little Buffy Cheerleader may get cavities in her ears. "What Makes You Beautiful" and "One Thing" are the so far big hits and "Taken" is a solid statement of how Miss Take only wants you when you're already taken. I'm not gonna listen to these guys forever, but they do sound pretty good for what it is and even though you know you're being taken in, you won't care.

Rock 'n' Roll Call: Bruce Springsteen - Wrecking Ball

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Wrecking Ball

The new one by Bruce Springsteen is "Wrecking Ball" and yup, he's not going anywhere - he's still on Columbia Records. While never my Boss, but still bossy enough for most, Springsteen offers another helping of heartfelt anthem-like rockers. The title tune is evidently, about the closing of Giants Stadium - well, boo-hoo on that - at least they have a team - actually several to choose from on the East Coast. I haven't watched an NFL game since the Rams left in 1994. "We Take Care of Our Own" is more blue collar pride and so it goes as Springsteen once again stands up for what Americans should be all about - just as Ted Nugent is what America should not be, which is vulgar and stupid. Baseline Boss is still basically bitchen.

Rock 'n' Roll Call: Chairlift - Something

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The new Chairlift on mighty, mighty Columbia Records is called "Something" and it is that, but really, not much of anything. The music is too loud for the wimpy and weak female vocals, who may be singing the phonebook for all I can tell or maybe "Heart of Glass" by Blondie, except not by Blondie and entirely too loud.

SOMETHING Out Now by Chairlift
Rockin' Roll Call
Bill Locey reviews music for the Ventura County Star, when he isn't reenacting the history of this great nation or teaching it to incarcerated youth.
He is the tall guy lurking in the back of all the local rock shows.
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