Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Happy Birthday!!

Happy Birthday to Uncle Scott!!!!!!!!!!

We send love, hugs, and kisses!!!!

Good for a chuckle...

Miss J. came to our room a couple nights ago. She stood in the doorway, in the darkness of the hallway with something in her hand. I hadn't been feeling so well that day so she brought me something to make me feel better. Quietly, she explained what she had brought to me. So quietly, in fact, that I couldn't hear what she was saying. I asked her to repeat what she was saying.

Exasperated with her mommy, Miss J declared: "Mommy, I brought you a know....a desert's got two humps on it...."

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Top 3 Surprise Albums of 2007

I was asked a few weeks ago to post something about the three biggest musical surprises of 2007. Well, I'm going to preface this post with two disclaimers. Disclaimer #1: These albums are my biggest surprises of 2007, but the albums may have come ouot earlier than '07. Disclaimer #2: I'm going to list five albums (plus one honorable mention), not three. These albums are in constant rotation in my car, at home, and at work. So here,without further ado, and in no particular order, are my five biggest surprise albums of 2007.
The Shore - The Shore:
This is the best Britpop album Britain never produced. The band is from California, but the sound is pure U.K. I've posted about the album before, but it deserves mention again. The CD was released in 2004 on the Maverick label. The good news is that the band should be releasing a follow-up soon. Stan outs include Waiting For The Sun (NOT the Doors song!), Firefly, Different Ways, and Hold On.

Bobby Bare Jr.'s Young Criminals Starvation League - The Longest Meow:This album is awesome. There is such a wide variety of styles on here. At times it sounds like Marty Robbins started hanging out with Neil Young. The album was released on Bloodshot Records in 2006. According to the liner notes, the 11 tracks were recorded in 11 hours. The 12th track, a Pixies cover, must not be included in that! The vocals are always so heartfelt. It fits perfectly on the Bloodshot label. To me, this is the equivalent of a modern day Flying Burrito Brothers album. Stand out tracks include Snuggling World Championships, Back to Blue, Stop Crying, and Borrow Your Cape.

Back Door Slam - Roll Away:

These guys are a power trio from Britain. The blues-based rock this band makes shows a definite Cream influence. But there's more. There is also a hint of Dire Straits and maybe a bit of Derek & the Dominoes. Guitarist Davy Knowles plays like Vaughan, Clapton, and Knopfler, all rolled into one. I'd take him over John Mayer any day. While Mayer is a better fit for pop music, Knowles voice and playing is perfect for British blues. The album was released on Blix Street Records in 2007. Stand outs include Outside Woman Blues, Come Home, Heavy On My Mind, and Too Late.

Johnny Society - Coming To Get You

I have all but one album by this band. I bought them all in '07 after hearing one song! So, instead of putting all of the albums on here, I'm putting the album with that one song on the list. That song is The Witch's Plea. I'm not really sure how to desribe this band. Their sound is all over the place. Not heavy, not pop, not wussy. I guess they're kinda like a modern Wings. Great songwriting with a sense of humor. It's just a fun album, and a fun catalog of work! The album came out in 2005 on Messenger Records. Stand out songs are (obviously): The Witch's Plea, What Breaks In You Might Break You Through, Don't Talk Me Down, and Bound.

A Shoreline Dream - Avoiding the Consequences:

This band is really cool. I'm a big fan of big, loud, sonic landscapes. Tons of guitars, droning chords and vocals, slow tempos just draw me in. This album has this is spades. The CD almost puts you in a trance, so you may not want to listen to this while driving or operating machinery! It's an album that flows together. It sounds powerful, but not in a Tool kind of way. It's like listening to the ocean. There's a powerful beauty that's very subtle at the same time. It was released in 2006 on Latenight Weeknight Records. Stand out songs are: Laying This One Down Now, Focus The Present, Love Is A Ghost In America, and Pour.

Honorable Mention goes to The Meeting Places - Find Yourself Along The Way. Graet throwback to shoegazing. Fuzzed out, multi-layered guitar, dreamy vocals. That's a winning combination for me.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Happy Birthday!!

It is Mom's birthday today and we all would love to wish her an extremely Happy Birthday!!! Love from the Shea Crew!!