Saturday, August 12, 2006

No More Rock 'n' Roll Fun

Today marks the last Sleater-Kinney show...probably ever. They'll be playing in their hometown (well, by way of Olympia, WA) of Portland, OR tonight to some sad sad fans. Their announcement of "indefinite hiatus" came as a huge disappointment for many music fans, but I don't think it was a complete surprise as it's been hinted at a bit in the past few years.

I was lucky enough to get to see three of their shows this past Fall. I was only a minor fan before seeing them live, liking a few tracks, owning an album or two, but never thinking twice about them. Seeing them live changed things and gave me a lot more respect for them. First off, Corin Tucker's vocals are amazing. They are amazing in that she always sounds like she's straining something to get these crazy shreiking noises out of this petite little woman, but when you see her singing them 4 feet from you you realize this really isn't that much effort for her, she just really has a gift, an amazing, if not somewhat odd, voice. Janet Weiss backs those vocals up on drums and harmonica pricelessly with hair a flying...her hair alone deserves a fan club. Carrie Brownstein gets major props from me as I thought she stole the show with her amazing guitar playing. Her guitar is almost like an extention of her and she seems to go into a trance while she plays and shakes and shudders around the stage with each riff. You start to wonder if she's playing the guitar or if it's player her.

They started off as just another vestige of the riot grrl movement, but when the rest disappeared or got day jobs these ladies kept at it, earned the respect of myriads of fans across the spectrums as well as praise from the critics, earning "rock and roll band of the year" in 2001 by Time magazine. There simply aren't enough esteemed and talented rock bands, especially those composed of all strong, intelligent and lovely women like this band. They will be sorely missed.
R.I.P, Sleater-Kinney.

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Thursday, August 10, 2006

Welcome, Jenny!

I'm very happy to announce that we now have a new contributing member here at Curiously Tasty!

My friend Jenny is coming aboard as a "when she has the time" contributing member and I couldn't be more excited. I feel very lucky to have her contribution as she has an amazing taste in music and I can't think of anyone else I would rather share a music blog with. In fact, I look forward to discovering something here as well since she is the one responsible for introducing me to some of the best music I've heard in the past few years. Be on the look out for her posts from now on, she will probably start posting within the next few weeks or whenever she has the time.

Welcome Jenny, we're glad you're here!

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Depeche Mode - Somebody

Unlike most bloggers out there, I don't get all excited over live versions of things. It is very rare for me to prefer a live version over a studio in most cases (there are a few artists that are exceptions to this rule and I don't understand why they even bother making studio albums because the live is just so good...I'm talking to YOU, Dar Williams!).

One song that is an exception is Depeche Mode's "Somebody". This song is an amazing love song that just seems to "fit" so perfectly when you care for someone because it's just so real and not sugary sweet. There's just nothing nicer than someone telling you this is the song that reminds them of you. The live version seems much more heartfelt to me, and there are some notes he holds longer and in different ways that just makes it more special. I suppose there is also something to be said for the audience noise in it as well as you can feel their enthusiasm as well, either way, I love the live version, and though the studio version is nice, it will never beat out the live one as my favorite.

It's a beautiful song and has been covered numerous times by artists I like. In my last entry I spoke of Veruca Salt and Louise Post maintaining it after the other original members left. Well, this Louise Post version of Veruca Salt covered the song for a Depeche Mode tribute album called 'For the Masses'. It's nice, but Depeche Mode does it better (of course), but it's definitely nice to hear a female take on it.

Another cover of it I enjoy is by the Belgian girls choir, Scala. Scala does covers of many popular songs and transforms these rock songs into these amazingly beautiful chorus pieces. This is not one of my favorites by them, but they do an excellent job with it, regardless.

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Monday, August 07, 2006

Nina Gordon: Bleeding Heart Graffiti

Nina Gordon, co-founder of 90's rock favorite Veruca Salt, has a new album entitled "Bleeding Heart Graffiti" hitting the shelves tomorrow (August 8th). This is a long overdue release as it has been put off numerous times and been in the works a few years now. Her last album, first solo effort "Tonight and the Rest of My Life", came out in 2000.

For fans of Veruca Salt, the reviews were mixed. Many fans favor the harder flavor of her fellow co-founder Louise Post's style, but Nina found a bit of a softer side. I always prefered Nina's work. When I really loved a Veruca track and checked the liner it was almost always a Gordon song. Nina has gotten some minor airplay since leaving Veruca Salt with the title single from her "Tonight and the Rest of My Life" album. Louise Post, on the other hand, put on weight, dyed her hair blonde (both of which, admittedly, were only the case right after the initial breakup for the band and her friendship with Nina, they were long time best friends) and is choking out pseudo-punk songs under the same Veruca Salt moniker, despite her being the only original band member left. That doesn't sound like a lot of success to me, but she still has a good deal of fans, while Nina is just making some new ones.

My copy of Bleeding Heart Graffiti is pre-ordered and on its way to me and I couldn't be more excited. The first single, "Kiss Me 'Til It Bleeds" sounds great and I have high hopes for the rest of the album.

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