Album Reviews

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Michael Fremer  |  Nov 01, 2015  |  21 comments
Hunky Dory introduced a kinder, gentler David Bowie after two heavy albums laden with mythological imagery and pleasant dread—not that this album doesn't also include heavy doses of the latter.

Michael Fremer  |  Sep 22, 2015  |  7 comments
Igor Stravinsky was the original rock'n'roller and if you don't think so, you don't know rock'n'roll or Stravinsky!

Michael Fremer  |  Sep 13, 2015  |  0 comments
When I interviewed singer/songwriter Jack Tempchin recently I joked about why older songwriters often lose their creativity.

Michael Fremer  |  Sep 02, 2015  |  39 comments
The story that has been handed down through the decades goes like this: Simon and Garfunkel’s vinyl LPs were originally produced using master tapes. Because S&G became so popular, over time the tapes would show signs of wear, so Columbia engineers would make a copy, toss the original, and begin cutting lacquers using the copy.

Michael Fremer  |  Aug 26, 2015  |  44 comments
Thanks to an analogplanet.com reader I got a copy to review of the two LP deluxe edition of Sticky Fingers (Rolling Stones Records 376-484-4).

Michael Fremer  |  Aug 02, 2015  |  21 comments
This Michael Hedges album shook up the guitar playing world in 1984 the way Leo Kottke's 6 and 12 String Guitars had in 1969.

Michael Fremer  |  Jul 01, 2015  |  7 comments
This minor musical and major sonic gem features the great vibraphonist Gary Burton, Dave Brubeck Quartet drummer Joe Morello (reference only in case you just arrived from outer space) and veteran bassist Joe Benjamin on a jazz session headed by the great Nashville guitarist Hank Garland.

Michael Fremer  |  Jun 29, 2015  |  23 comments
Jerome Sabbagh's The Turn puts his long-running jazz quartet in New York's famed Sear Sound with veteran engineer James Farber at the board. The musicians managed to record to two-track analog tape the more than an hour's worth of music spread over the four sides of this double 180g LP set. That's getting you money's worth from a single studio session.

Michael Fremer  |  Jun 28, 2015  |  29 comments
Taylor Swift’s 1989 released in October of 2014, sold 1.27 million albums in its first week and debuted at #1 on the Billboard Top 200 chart. By the end of the year it had sold 3,660,000 copies, remaining at the top of the chart for most of that time.

Michael Fremer  |  Jun 16, 2015  |  38 comments
The fourth Kinks album was the first on which Ray Davies removes his hard rock shell. It’s clear in retrospect that many artists from the ‘60s rock era were rocking only because that’s what the times demanded.

Michael Fremer  |  May 04, 2015  |  10 comments
The Wichita and Lawrence, Kansas-based Wrong Kata Trio has been playing together since 2010, though the three have been performing in the area for fifteen years.

Michael Fremer  |  Apr 01, 2015  |  6 comments
Squishy, sticky, elastic beats, some so slow and off-kilter that they threaten to fall apart, ghostly falsetto harmonies, cavernous empty spaces between the rhythmic wah-wah pulses and a distant, almost other-worldly sonic perspective announce D’Angelo’s singular sinewy yet gentle vision.

Michael Fremer  |  Mar 20, 2015  |  68 comments
Only one of them had actually ridden a surfboard. They weren’t hot rodders or drag racers and by the time the group formed in 1961 lead vocalist Mike Love was already 20 years old and arguably more a man than a “boy”. Al Jardine was 19 as was Brian Wilson. Brothers Dennis and Carl were, respectively, 17 and 15, so they qualified as “boys”.

Michael Fremer  |  Mar 06, 2015  |  61 comments
Born out of desperation (hence the name), with the release of its eponymous debut album containing "Sultans of Swing", Dire Straits was an instant commercial success. Cynics at the time said the tune made Dylan safe for average folks. The album was eventually certified double platinum.

Michael Fremer  |  Feb 25, 2015  |  37 comments
If you think audio reviewers can be grouchy, search opinions of this performance of Mahler's 9th Symphony, his final complete work before passing away at age 51.

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