The Joup Friday Album: Emerald Web – Dragon Wings and Wizard Tales

emeraldwebThe first sound we hear on experimental New Age duo Emerald Web’s 1979 album, Dragon Wings and Wizard Tales, is a whimsical flute floating in the breeze, like some errant minstrel passing by in the forest, inadvertently heralding the arrival of something far grander than he.  It sets the stage wonderfully.

The Joup Friday Album: Jean-Claude Vannier – L’Enfant Assassin Des Mouches

jeanclaudevannierHey guys, it’s scary out there.  And it’s only getting scarier.  So, why not get lost in an oddball record of orchestral pop?

After providing the arrangements on Serge Gainsbourg’s legendary 1971 album Histoire de Melody Nelson, French composer Jean-Claude Vannier followed up that landmark with a record of psych-tinged soundscapes that were like nothing else out there.  Ignored and lost to time upon its initial release, years later the record became rumor to salivating collectors in the know, a legend, a ghost, something entirely too amazing to actually exist.

The Joup Friday Album: The Parasites of The Western World

parasitesA common descriptor that’s often used for music that’s different, or strange, or complex, or lost and forgotten is that it’s ahead of its time, artists creating songs that are so far in front of the game that it’s like they shouldn’t even exist just yet.  And that’s a nice sentiment I suppose.  There’s certainly a touch of endearment in those words, an implication that the art was just so visionary and amazing, that the world simply wasn’t ready for it yet.  But the other implication, and the one that is much more easily measurable, is that it just didn’t sell.  It didn’t make the artists that created it any money, which in turn usually led to shorter careers, smaller outputs, and quainter discographies, these inspired audio tomes lost to time only to end up in some jackass’s record collection and to be written about on some website’s music column.

Endless Loop: The Dream

theeohseesHave you ever had one of those songs that gets stuck in your head for days…weeks…years? Sure you have. These are the songs that always make the cut. The songs on repeat. We all have them. I have a ton. Welcome back to Endless Loop.

“The Dream” by Thee Oh Sees

The Joup Friday Album: Soundgarden – Superunknown

soundgardenTimes are…well…they’re strange right now to say the very least. Everything is uncertain. There seems to be an overhanging fear above us all, ominous horizons, and no end to the darkness gradually spreading out like spilled ink before us. Instinctually, many of us recoil at this impending doom, losing ourselves in comfortable things and memories, a coping mechanism of sorts to shield our hearts, minds, and souls from this bleak world. We wade in nostalgia and bask in the warm glow of old things. We try to remember happiness. And we forget ourselves. At least for a while.

Endless Loop: Reign On

brianjonestownmassacreHave you ever had one of those songs that gets stuck in your head for days…weeks…years? Sure you have. These are the songs that always make the cut. The songs on repeat. We all have them. I have a ton. Welcome back to Endless Loop.

“Reign On” by The Brian Jonestown Massacre

I have been writing this column for a while now, and it’s come as kind of surprise to me how many “favorite” songs I have. They keep coming to me week after week, seemingly with no end in sight. That being said, I sometimes feel like I’m repeating myself, some articles being bathed in a loving, nostalgic hue, others focused on a more cultural significance, and some just meandering off into their own inconsequential tangents.

Endless Loop: The Wooden Song

buttholesurfersHave you ever had one of those songs that gets stuck in your head for days…weeks…years? Sure you have. These are the songs that always make the cut. The songs on repeat. We all have them. I have a ton. Welcome back to Endless Loop.

“The Wooden Song” by The Butthole Surfers

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