Vinyl Release

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Steve Sutherland  |  May 31, 2019
This debut LP laid down a beat that courses through the veins of rock 'n' roll to this very day. Steve Sutherland pays tribute as he hears the 180g reissue on Sundazed

What's the baddest record ever made? I don't mean baddest as in worst. I mean baddest as in bad-ass, brimming with threat and braggadocio. A few candidates immediately spring to mind. Honey Boy Martin's 'Dreader Than Dread' threatens to shank you and send you to the graveyard. Johnny Cash's 'The Man In Black' is a pretty broody dude. Dr John The Night Tripper's 'I Walk On Gilded Splinters' boasts destructive powers of magic malignancy.

Steve Sutherland  |  Mar 06, 2020
It was a release that had all the pundits scratching their heads for how best to describe it. Steve Sutherland sits transfixed like Alice in Wonderland by this 180g reissue

Let's get this party started with the tree surgeon. Yup, the tree surgeon. To be strictly accurate, $250's worth of tree surgeon because that's how much Don Van Vliet charged Straight, his record company, for the services of an arboriculturalist's services during the recording of the album we're here to celebrate.

Steve Sutherland  |  Oct 01, 2018
It was the 1962 live album that launched the Surfin' genre. Listening to the 180g reissue, Steve Sutherland still wishes the guy on the sleeve was him

Every now and then, it's OK to be wrong. Not often, I grant you, but on occasion a long-held misbelief can be way better than the actual fact. That lyric you misheard years ago maybe, a phrase which has informed your enjoyment of a particular song – until you discover that the words and meaning were something different all along. Sometimes the reality can ruin the thereafter. And it's better to continue with your fantasy.

Steve Sutherland  |  Jun 08, 2020
Steve Sutherland savours the thrillingly nutty flavours of this ripe 11-track offering from the multimonikered Aussie musician, as the album is reissued on 180g vinyl

Back in the 1950s, that perpetual scamp and eminent philosopher Bertrand Russell (then well into his 80s) created an analogy to deal with the concept of faith in the existence of God. He said that if he were to assert, without offering any evidence whatsoever, that a teapot – too small to be seen by telescopes – orbits the Sun somewhere in space between the Earth and Mars, he could not expect anyone to believe him solely because it could not be proven wrong. 'I think,' he concluded, 'the Christian God just as unlikely'.

Steve Sutherland  |  Jul 10, 2019
The 1970 album by the lads from Ladbroke Grove was edited from 'live in the studio' takes. Steve Sutherland listens to a 180g vinyl reissue of their space rock debut

Let us not concern ourselves with debating the greatest album ever made. Or the greatest single, for that matter. Because, let's face it, chances are we won't reach any kind of consensus and most likely we'll be here all day arguing about it.

Steve Sutherland  |  Mar 05, 2019
Thinking back to just after the time of his dad's Anderson shelter, Steve Sutherland dips into the 180g vinyl reissue of a 1968 concept album with sci-fi overtones

Devo have actually got nothing to do with this article, but in the past week or so it's occurred to me that those crazy coots from Akron, Ohio may have had a point all along.

Steve Sutherland  |  Dec 10, 2019
A blend of beauty and violence... Steve Sutherland sets out the claims for this late British folk singer/songwriter's 1973 LP as he hears the album afresh on 180g vinyl

Two men walk into a bar… Ouch! No, not that one. Start again. OK, two men walk into a pub and head straight to the bar. The taller of the two smiles and says to the barmaid, 'We'd like to see the landlord'. She calls her boss over and he looks the pair up and down. They're dishevelled, a bit rough-looking, like they haven't slept or washed in a while, but hey, he's seen worse.

Steve Sutherland  |  Apr 22, 2020
Pinball wizard Steve Sutherland looks back on meeting Her Madge in the early '80s and her career-altering controversial third album, now released on 180g vinyl

She looks a bit lost, standing alone backstage leaning against the wall, watching all the celebrities mingle, clink glasses, air kiss and gossip. Lost and a little bored. Same as me, to be honest. So I cross the room and say 'hi'. She says 'hi' back. To break the ice, I point to the pinball machine, unoccupied, just over there, and ask if she fancies a game. She smiles again. 'Sure.' And away we go at it. As I remember, I won, although I'm sure – if she recalled it at all – she'd disagree.

Steve Sutherland  |  Sep 01, 2018
It was an album the singer hated, while the reaction of the music press was at best lukewarm. All wrong, says Steve Sutherland, who hears the 180g reissue of the LP

'The first time I heard the album, I cried.' It's rare but not entirely unknown for a musician to disown their own work. Lee Mavers wanted nothing to do with his one and only La's LP [HFN Nov '17], claiming the finished article did not represent the melodic visions gambolling in his brain. And Paul McCartney famously baulked at all the lush orchestration Phil Spector lavished on The Beatles' Let It Be.

Steve Sutherland  |  May 22, 2020
Digging into the darker, tragic side of America's history, Steve Sutherland sets the context for this live recording, now reissued as a 50-year celebratory LP on 180g vinyl

Once upon a time there was a country which called itself the United States Of America – a gross misnomer because it couldn't have been more disunited if it tried. It was first largely populated by white people who had landed in ships and stolen the land from its original inhabitants. They then kidnapped and imported boatloads of people from Africa and the like to do all their heavy lifting. These slaves had no wages and no rights.

Steve Sutherland  |  Jan 23, 2020
The sad story of Donny Hathaway's demise is told by Steve Sutherland as he listens to the acclaimed 1972 Atlantic album, recently reissued on 180g vinyl

Did he jump? Did he fall by accident? This we will never know. What's for sure is that late in the evening of the 13th of January 1979 Donny Hathaway's body was found on the sidewalk outside the 44-storey art deco Essex House Hotel at 160 Central Park South in Manhattan, NYC. He had plunged there from his room on the 15th floor. His death was ruled as suicide.

Steve Sutherland  |  Jun 11, 2019
Part concept album, part concoction of West Coast rock and jazz... Steve Sutherland hears the 180g reissue of an LP from 1970 with lessons we can learn from today

If there's a lazier fellow on the face of God's green earth than Jimmy Page, boy, I'd sure like to meet him. Yes, that Jimmy Page, guvnor of Led Zeppelin and hitherto legendary guitar god – it's the 'hitherto' bit that gets my goat.

Steve Sutherland  |  May 14, 2020
A song with a kick, but for all the wrong reasons, as Steve Sutherland reassesses a ska album from 1970, which has recently been re-released on 180g vinyl

We could begin with Plato, or even Aristotle, but Oscar Wilde it is. In his 1889 essay, The Decay Of Lying, the great man took umbrage with the Greeks' philosophy of mimesis which said that all true art mimics nature. On the contrary, quoth Oscar, 'Life imitates art' and that is roughly how it felt – very roughly as it happens – one sunny Saturday lunchtime in April, 1972, when I got my head kicked in.

Steve Sutherland  |  Feb 12, 2020
He just couldn't cope, says Steve Sutherland as he counts out the 'aha's and listens to the recent 180g reissue of the Liverpool band's post-punk debut LP

Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha aha…'

Steve Sutherland  |  Nov 01, 2018
Steve Sutherland tells how the duo tweaked their covers, wrote some originals but finally fell out by the 1970s as he hears the 180g reissue of their debut LP

So many stories, where-oh-where to begin? Maybe we could start on the 14th of July 1973 at that fateful gig at Knott's Berry Farm in Buena Park, California, when Don's so hammered that he's butchering the songs and Phil smashes his guitar in frustration, tells the crowd he's tired of being an Everly Brother and says that they, in fact, died as a meaningful entity ten years before – thus revealing the fraught fabrication behind all those celestial harmonies. It was an acrimony so strong that it kept them full-on apart for the entire next decade.

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