30 November 2009

Weekly Records

A new feature for the Regular Express:

Aside from whatever singles/movies/fact/crap I decide to post about, I am also planning to select approximately 5-10 albums per week, give them a couple spins each, and offer an opinion of them. I've been doing this for a little while on my own, and it's allowed me to actively listen to the things I haven't given enough of a chance or new stuff that I've been meaning to listen to.

The records for this week include

Talking Heads - More Songs About Buildings and Food
Felt - Forever Breathes the Lonely Word
M. Ward - Transfiguration of Vincent
Lightning Bolt - Earthly Delights
Fela Kuti - Confusion/Gentleman
Real Estate - s/t

and possibly

Them Crooked Vultures - s/t
Julian Casablancas - Phrazes for the Young

And by the way, I got to see Lightning Bolt last weekend. Best show of the year. I felt like I was under water afterward. Three cheers for tinnitus!

Traveling Wilburys

The ol' Regular Express is back on track.

I thought it apt to start again where I left off way back in June with another Jeff Lynne-related song.

The Traveling Wilburys were a 5 guitar band, featuring the dried up talents of Lynne, Bobby Dylan, Tom Petty, George Harrison, and Roy Orbison. In fairness, the Big O, despite being generally past his career prime, still had every bit of the talent that he possessed in the 50's and 60's, and probably had the most to do with the Wilbury's success upon releasing their first album.

Their first album, Traveling Wilburys Vol. 1, was generally acclaimed and recently reissued with the other volume, Traveling Wilburys Vol. 3 (the second volume is said to be Tom Petty's "Full Moon Fever", for which all the members contributed). I grew up listening to the first volume, but never really listened to Vol. 3 until recently. As Orbison passed away of a heart attack prior to the recording of Vol. 3, the album misses his presence. Lynne and Harrison attempt to ape his vocal delivery, but it simply doesn't stand up to the velvety voice of Mr. Orbison. The album is decent, though somewhat uneven, and doesn't quite stand up to the first volume. If he didn't sound like complete garbage before, Dylan is seriously phoning it in on this one (note the backwards baseball hat on the cover), but the other three were obviously capable enough songwriters, using this outlet to experiment with different 50's and 60's rock styles that prove mostly simple and effective.

My personal favorite from this album is "New Blue Moon", a Harrison-penned track that Dylan takes the verse vocals for. Fortunately, this song is all chorus, and it's probably the only track that Dylan is actually having any fun on. Where many of the other songs sound like watered-down blues and gospel (read: white), this one actually has a bit of real R&B flavor, what with the loose drums and sustained piano and whatnot.

Traveling Wilburys - New Blue Moon

09 - New Blue Moon by regularexpress