Patti Smith has her first new one in eight years - that would be "Banga" and it's on Columbia. Ably assisted by two of her kids, the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Famer begins with a song, "Amerigo," a song about Amerigo Vespucci, who has been off the charts for several hundred years, but did give America its name and was more than just another stubborn dude who refused to ask directions as he correctly identified the New World as not Asia. She has a kick-butt band behind her, especially guitar player, Lenny Kaye. He blows minds on the rocker, "Fuji-San" and other artsy smartsy, poetic rockers such as "Constantine's Dream," during which the emperor suspected that the empire could have a cross in its future. Smith seems way smarter than everybody but does not seem pretentious and has anyone ever seen her and Iggy Pop at the same time? This one ends with a reverent version of Neil Young's "After the Gold Rush." I can answer that one: Too much traffic - don't move up here. Smith rocks seriously.
Rock 'n' Roll Call: Patti Smith - Banga
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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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