If you have heard of the C.A. Quintet, you probably: (a.) were a part of the small Minneapolis rock scene in the late 60’s or (b.) are a huge music geek who revels in seeking out obscure regional psychedelic records. Or, if you’re like me, you stumbled on them because your friend’s neighbor was in the band. Regardless of how you come across the C.A. Quintet, their album Trip Thru Hell is wonderfully perplexing. The record moves effortlessly from the murky and psychedelic “Trip Thru Hell (Part 1)” to the straight 60’s pop of “Blow to My Soul.” Did I mention they throw in a lot of trumpet? Not exactly standard psychedelic fare, but the end product is both cohesive and original. A good portion of Trip Thru Hell is evocative of the darkness suggested by the title, but there are plenty of bright spots too. Check out “Sadie Lavone” (apparently a bonus track) which at first might be mistaken for a boy meets girl pop song, but takes a weird turn a minute in and ends in a funky psychedelic jam.
Download: C.A. Quintet – Sadie Lavone [MP3]
Summertime is vacation time. Roadtrip time. So sweaty you stick to your chair my God why don’t I live in a more temperate climate time. So where do you go at a time like this? “California! Californiaaaaaa! Here we COOOOOOOOMMMMME!” Excuse me. I believe I slipped into the theme song of the O.C. for a moment. I thought about making every track on this list “California” by Phantom Planet, but I’m fairly certain I am the only one who would think that is funny. So instead, here a legit list of songs about heading out west. Enjoy.
Warren G may always be known as the “Regulate” guy, but his debut album Regulate…G Funk Era, holds more than its famous title track. Though Dr. Dre pioneered G Funk, laid-back funk infused rap, his half brother Warren is an accomplished master of the style in his own right. As a rapper Warren G’s subdued rhyming has more in common with old school hip-hoppers than with his gangsta brethren, but his production is right out of The Chronic playbook: squealing synthesizers, savvy bass lines, and slow tempos. Perfect summertime jams.
The Vatican recently saw fit to forgive The Beatles for wrongs committed against the Catholic Church. The Beatles were guilty of such crimes as: claiming they were bigger than Jesus, having kooky haircuts, and of course, making the the best pop music the world has ever known. In their musical pursuits, the controversy The Beatles fostered was often was linked to the lyrics of their songs. Maybe Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds is a reference to LSD. The fire referred to at the end of Norwegian Wood could be an act of arson. And every school boy knows that Everybody’s Got Something to Hide Except For Me and My Monkey is really about one man’s unsavory love affair with a primate. For decades people have been decoding Beatles lyrics looking for any minor detail that might be inflammatory, but the fact of the matter is, many Beatles lyrics are more blatantly strange. Follow the jump for the Top 5 Beatles Songs with Subversive Lyrics
In retrospect, it was the free tequila at that third South By Southwest party that did it. And there was that energy drink you downed, despite the fact you’d never heard of it (hey, it was free). Of course the Southern Comfort at party five didn’t help either. Nor did the eleven beers between party one and party seven (3 micro-brews, 2 Shiners, 5 PBRs, 1 new crap beer Budweiser is pushing). The fact that this unholy blend of alcohol is now fighting it out with the bratwurst and street pizza you consumed yesterday is only complicating matters. Stomach hates you. Brain not functioning. Unidentified bruises abound. Water and aspirin cannot save you. All this and your friend has the nerve to say: “I’m not hung over at all, I feel great!” Resist the urge to punch him in his stupid face. Go and put on a nice soft record. Follow the jump for 5 Albums that will help you cope with a hangover.
There are few song subjects that lend themselves to expressions of pure happiness. Songs about automobiles seem to be an exception. The sense of freedom that comes from driving a car always seems be a joyful experience in songs. Whether you’re talking about The Beach Boys or The Geto Boys, exalting the virtues of the automobile seems to be a peculiarly American phenomenon. Most songs seem to be about American cars too as, to my knowledge, no one yet has written a great pop song about a Honda Civic. Maybe some day. In the mean time, follow the jump for five great songs about (American) cars.
Admit it: you have the attention span of a coked out squirrel. You don’t want to hear jam bands, experimental noise bands, or ambitious concept albums. You’re a 21st Century, internet-streaming, iPod-shuffling, next-button-pressing, son of a bitch.
I forgive you. Yet I must insist that you occasionally look to songs stretching beyond that holy 3 minute mark to satisfy your fickle rock and roll urges. Here are 5 Long Songs Worth Your Time. Follow the jump for the full list.