Welcome Back Kotter!!

Hola Amigas y Amigos! It's been a while...

We have been back in our house since May 5, things are slowly returning to normal, we even have new cats on which to lavish affection. They are slowly getting used to us (which ain't easy, lemme tell ya!) and we are getting used to them. Hot summer days are in full swing, so it's time I got off my arse and got some writing done. No special theme this time out, I'm just going to give short blurbs on the new albums I've been listening to lately. Hope you enjoy! Okay Brad, stop wasting everyone's time - give the people what they want....

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The Interrupters Fight The Good Fight : Do you like Rancid? Do you like old No Doubt? Do you like The Specials? Do you like good time, upbeat party music with a good beat? Do I need to go on? Check this one out. They do what they do and they do it well - it's not gonna win any awards, but really, do you listen to awards or do you listen to music? That's what I thought.

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Parquet Courts Wide Awake! : I am with your humble ABOG hosts on this one. What a great record! The bass really pushes things along and the entire vibe of the record reminds me of all the old great punk and post-punk bands like 999, Buzzcocks, and Sham 69. Don't sleep on this one, wake up and stay wide awake! Ok, bad joke even for me. Bonus points for the title track reminding me of Talking Heads. Always welcome. FOTY for sure.

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Mad Caddies Punk Rocksteady : I've always loved cover versions. I always loved it when a band takes a song and makes it it's own. I'm also unapologetic when it comes to a love for ska, be it 1st, 2nd, or 3rd wave (sorry Shane - we'll agree to disagree on this one). Yeah, this isn't ska, it's rocksteady - an important distinction here. But did Mad Caddies ever knock it out of the park on this one. My favorite album by them so far, and they have a lot of great ones. Great summertime music here as well.

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Parkway Drive Reverence : I must have been sleeping on this Australian band before. Took me by storm when I first heard it. Thanks Karl for the recommendation. Heavy and technical and melodic and everything you want in a metal band. I would love to see how this band captures their sound live. It's gotta be great.

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Madball For The Cause : NYC hardcore music. Yes! A genre I happen to love, even if it all sounds the same after a while. This band knocks it out of the park, though. I promise you won't get bored listening to this. Great aggression release and it will get you moving as well. 

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Sarah Shook & The Disarmers Years : It's no secret I love this band. Their first record was aces, this one is great too, if a little too polished, It needs to be rougher around the edges for me, but that is not a knock on the album. The songs are top notch, the band can play, and Sarah's voice is on point. Run, don't walk to get this one.

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JPEGMafia Veteran : Whew. Where to start with this one. Confession: I am an old school rap fan from the 80's thru the 90's. My go-to groups were Public Enemy, Ice Cube, Tribe Called Quest, and Wu-Tang Clan. All groups who used sound and samples to really build a song and make it their own. I love trying to find the sources of those samples, finding out what helped to make those songs great. The rhymes were great as well - I felt like they had something to say. This album is pretty challenging for me: I think there are moments of brilliance buried in there, but it will take me many more listens to parcel them out. I'm not sure if I have the patience to do that however. But then, I'm old and set in my ways. If you have the time to really listen, go for it and dig in. It is definitely NOT background music. Confrontational, for sure.

That's it for this time out. I'm hoping to become more of a regular again now that my life is back to "normal". Look for a new post soon. Oh, and as a challenge to the vocal trio of this group, I am suggesting an album review for them on the next podcast episode. Gentlemen, please give The Rock*A*Teens new album Sixth House a listen. See if it's something you want to recommend....

Other Listening: Alice Cooper Welcome To My Nightmare; Mighty Mighty Bosstones While We're At It; Orange Goblin The Wolf Bites Back; Pennywise Never Gonna Die; Nine Inch Nails Bad Witch