The Ron Kane Files

Writing About Music

Friday, January 18, 2008

An Album A Day...

1-18-08 An album a day…

I began 2008 with a lofty ideal: listen to an album a day this year. Doing all-right so far – I have managed to keep up the pace. Some days you get 2, other days…nothing. But it began well.

I went to San Francisco for the week between Xmas & New Year’s – and got a bunch of new CD’s. On the way home in the car, I listened to all of the 2007 Edwyn Collins album, and the new numbered title by LCD Soundsystem (I saw recently that it was deemed “an essential purchase” by no less than the NME). Mind you, that was on Hwy 5, as a passenger – not optimal conditions for listening.

So, after getting home on Jan. 1 – I got down to business: Listening! First Two! Not as many places to listen any more, less time for listening, less optimal circumstances. But damn it, must…try…to…listen! (Think anguished cartoon word balloon words!).

In no particular order:

Peter Gabriel “Ovo” (Realworld UK CD, 2000) – found as a used CD in San Francisco, regular version – “This is an enhanced CD – Please put it in your computer” – yikes! Been a while since a CD told me what to do with it! Oh, it’s 2000 – and it has a video added – will it play in my MD dubbing deck? Yes. Hey, where are the Peter Gabriel vocals? Is that why this wasn’t released in the U.S.? There aren’t many (any?) untreated PG vocals here? Neneh Cherry, Rasco, Shankar, Richie Havens, Elizabeth Fraser…are the vocalists. I can’t believe that I mistook (misunderstood?) Richie Havens as Peter Gabriel! Overall reaction was positive. Did they make an LP of “Ovo”? No LP’s in the Millennium Dome? (Listened mostly in the car.)

Steve Hackett “Watcher Of The Skies – Genesis Revisited” (Guardian US CD, 1996) – found as a used CD in San Francisco. Not a huge (latter day) Genesis fan, so I approached this with open ears. Yes, the guitar playing sounds good. I seem to like it when a new vocalist tackles somethin’ that Phil Collins originally sang. Interesting cast of characters: John Wetton, Bill Bruford, Ian McDonald, Paul Carrack, Colin Blunstone…are the vocalists. A friend told me he mail-ordered it when it was a “Japan-only” release – and was disappointed with it. I am not disappointed with it; not at all offended that Steve would revisit his own previous works. Didn’t much care for the re-working of “I Know What I Like” (as I enjoy the original), and never did much care at all for “Your Own Special Way” – neither the original or this new version. Overall reaction was positive. (Listened while sitting at my computer.)

And so it goes. Let’s see how long I can go on trying to hear a new music title a day. Alas, thus far – all titles I have checked out have been CD’s – it’s the convenience factor at work. I’ll eventually get around to listening to LP’s on my proper set-up, where real evaluations can take place.


Anonymous Jim Donato said...

Never a huge Genesis fan. Only ever had budget US twofer of Nursery Cryme & Foxtrot and The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway from pg lineup. Had Duke and ABACAB from Collins lineup. Had "And Then There Were Three" but immediately got rid of it! No kidding, I have never heard ANY of the others. I infinitely preferred pg solo material [at least through 1982]. I once heard a Hackett solo album, "Defector." It seemed okay. more "rock" than Genesis, which was probably a good thing. But I felt that Genesis were about as good as Yes in the commercial prog spectrum at the time with several, but hardly all albums in my collection at the time. Contract to ELP with all but 2 in my collection at the same time [late 70s]. But I have to admit, I've had NO genesis music in my collection for a LONG TIME, whereas I still have room for Yes' "Drama!"

8:17 AM  
Blogger Ron Kane said...


I am OK with Genesis up to "Selling England...", PG for the first two only - and then some of his newer work. I wish there was a Steve Hackett collection of just instrumentals. I have $1 LP's of all 70's ELP's, and CD's of everything up to BSS. For Yes, I like "Drama" best, then "90125", then "Big Generator". That's about it for the commercial UK prog.


6:27 PM  

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