The Joup Friday Album: Johnny Marr – Call the Comet

Johnny_Marr_-_Call_the_Comet

As someone who always wanted to be able to play guitar well but never had the self-discipline to learn more than a handful of chords, I have always been in awe of my chosen guitar gods. My big three are the Cult’s Billy Duffy, John Squire from the Stone Roses, and Johnny Marr. Marr has spent the last 30 years standing around waifishly with a “Will strum for food” sign. Dozens of artists took him up on it, from alternative icons like Bryan Ferry, the Talking Heads, and The The, to bands whose profile he raised by signing on (Modest Mouse, the Cribs). Over the last five years he finally embarked on a solo career, releasing three albums under his own name, including the recently released Call the Comet. Oh, and he was also in the Smiths.

The Joup Friday Album: The Paper Chase – God Bless Your Black Heart

paperchase“Good things die all the time.”

Dark and ugly times call for dark and ugly music.

And I’m trying to remember maybe where we were at collectively in 2004 when John Congleton and The Paper Chase released their third full length album God Bless Your Black Heart.  What was the backdrop?  What was in the ether?  Or for that matter, what was in the hearts and minds of the band members who created it at that moment?  On the surface, the record is a scorching, screeching, often disharmonic concept album that seems to be about the end of a relationship, filled with all of the bitterness and resentment that that would entail, each discordant note echoing the declarations of pain and hate.

The Joup Friday Album: Burzum – Filosofem

Burzum - FilosfemWell, Grez recently got in over his head in a high stakes poker game in Vegas and right now, none of us know where he is, so the powers that be asked if I would be so kind as to fill in for him on the Joup Friday Album this week. As a goat busy spreading the word of his Master, I’m a bit booked up, but luckily I found an open slot in my morning schedule and figured I’d turn in a quickie. So, to open up your weekend in a dark and foreboding sort’a way, I give you – Filosofem, by Burzum.

The Joup Friday Album: PIL – Public Image: First Issue

Public Image, LTDWhat do you get when you remove the one member of the Sex Pistols that didn’t buy into the hype? You get the death of the band, whether or not Jonesy, Cook and Mclauren knew it or not. Ronnie Biggs? Come on…

Meanwhile, Mr. Lydon found himself some interesting people to work with when starting his subsequent project, the aptly titled Public Image, Ltd. Jah Wobble is one of the legendary musicians that not only helped catalyze what has colloquially become known as “Post Punk”, but also inspired the first outcroppings of Industrial music, specifically the Chicago sound (a personal modern favorite of Wobble’s that sets him in with some of the Chicago folks he influenced is the criminally short-lived band The Damage Manual). Then there’s Keith Levine and Jim Walker, both of whom I know far less about but turn in fantastic performances on this record.

The Joup Friday Album: Courtney Barnett – Sometimes I Sit And Think, And Sometimes I Just Sit

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As someone whose preferred style of music (noisy or jangly guitars with catchy hooks) is deeply out of style at the moment, it’s rare that any artist comes along who catches my attention enough for me to even learn their name. I can’t think of an artist who has better managed to catch my attention in the last few years than Courtney Barnett. I heard her first single, “Avant Gardener” on the radio and liked it enough to turn it up every subsequent time I found it on the dial, enough to tell myself, “I should really download that EP so I can listen to it in the car,” but not enough to actually get around to downloading it.

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: Dio – Holy Diver

Dio-Holy-Diver1Filling in for Katie J. VanWormer until next Friday, when KJ will return to douse this place with sonic gasoline and write an article about Deicide’s greatest album… no, no, I can’t keep a straight face there. You can tell I’m lying because, well, Deicide doesn’t have a ‘greatest album’, they don’t even have a great or a good one. But then I suppose I should watch whose house I throw stones at today, as I might find myself a guest there later. Like the topic of today’s Fill-In Joup Friday Album.

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