2018 Music Log


Whoa time sure flies. Also any album listed by itself means its from the public library. Although I will probably lean more on YouTube and Barnes & Noble this year, plus Half-Priced Books.

January:

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1. Morrison Hotel, The Doors-9.5 *Barnes & Noble
2. Workin’ with the Miles Davis Quintet, Miles Davis-9.5 *YouTube
3. Relaxin’ with the Miles Davis Quintet, Miles Davis-9.0 *YouTube
4. Cookin’ with the Miles Davis Quintet, Miles Davis-9.5 *YouTube
5. Steamin’ with the Miles Davis Quintet, Miles Davis-9.5 *YouTube
6. Communiqué, Dire Straits-10.0 *Barnes and Noble
7. Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit, Courtney Barnett-10.0
8. Sea Change, Beck-8.0

February

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9. Wheels Of Fire, Cream-9.0
10. Lust For Life, Lana Del Rey-9.5
11. Ben Folds Five, Ben Folds Five-9.0 *Half-Priced Books
12. Whatever and Ever Amen, Ben Folds Five-9.5 *Half-Priced Books
13. Ride The Lightning, Metallica-9.5 *Half-Priced Books
14. Colors, Beck-7.0

March:

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15. Before These Crowded Streets, Dave Matthews Band-10.0
16. Time Out of Mind, Bob Dylan-9.5
17. Fitz and the Tantrums, Fitz and the Tantrums-8.0
18. Standing On The Verge of Getting It On, Funkadelic-10.0
19. Foo Fighters, Foo Fighters *Half-Price Books-8.5
20. Humanz, Gorillaz-9.0 *Barnes & Noble

April:

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21. Gish, The Smashing Pumpkins-8.0 *Half-Price Books
22. Batman Motion Picture Soundtrack, Prince-8.0, Half-Price Books
23. Cults, Cults-9.0, Half-Price Books
24. Sacred Hearts Club, Foster The People-8.5 *Half-Price Books
25. I Told You I Was Freaky, Flight of the Concords-9.0 *Half-Price Books
26. Bad Music For Bad People, The Cramps-8.0
27. Days Are Gone, Haim-8.0
28. American Dream, LCD Soundsystem-9.5

May:

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29. Mothership Connection, Parliament-9.0
30. Brats in Battalions, Adolescents-5.5
31. Mature Themes, Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti-7.0
32. Waiting on a Song, Dan Auerbach-8.0
33. Since I Left You, The Avalanches-10.0
34. IV, Black Mountain-9.0
35. #1 Record, Big Star-9.5

June:

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36. Bleach, Nirvana-9.0 *Half-Price Books
37. Reckoning, R.E.M.-9.5 *Half-Price Books
38. Long Distance, Ivy-9.0 *Half-Price Books
39. Movement, New Order-9.0, *YouTube
40. The Psychedelic Furs-Greatest Hits, The Psychedelic Furs-9.0, *YouTube
41. Gorillaz, Gorillaz-9.0 *Half-Price Books
42. Electric Warrior, T.Rex-10.0 *Half-Price Books
43. Meat Is Murder, The Smiths-9.0 *Half-Price Books

July:

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44. Stankonia, OutKast-9.0
45. Sailing On The Seas Of Cheese, Primus-8.0
46. The Idiot, Iggy Pop-8.0
47. Villains, Queens of the Stone Age-9.0
48. Leave Home, The Ramones-9.5
49. Rio, Duran Duran-9.5 *Barnes & Noble
50. Underneath the Rainbow, The Black Lips-8.0
51. Grateful Dead (Skull & Roses), The Grateful Dead-8.0
52. Private Eyes, Hall & Oates-9.0
53. Rickie Lee Jones, Rickie Lee Jones-8.5
54. Lonesome Dreams, Lord Huron-9.0
55. Melodrama, Lorde-9.0 *Barnes & Noble

August:

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56. Axomoxoa, The Grateful Dead-8.5
57. Rocket To Russia, The Ramones-9.0
58. Old World Romance, Sea Wolf-7.5
59. Hot Thoughts, Spoon-8.0
60. A Greater Understanding, The War On Drugs-8.5

September:

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61. We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace & Magic, Foxygen-8.0
62. The Score, Fugees-9.0
63. Wake of the Flood, The Greatful Dead-10.0
64. Grand National, John Butler Trio-8.0
65. In A Silent Way, Miles Davis-10.0 *YouTube
66. Flowers, The Rolling Stones-8.0

October:

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67. Fables of the Reconstruction, R.E.M.-9.0 *Half-Price Books
68. America’s Greatest Hits, America-9.0 *Half-Price Books
69. Relationship of Command, At The Drive In-8.0 *Half-Price Books
70. Duran Duran, Duran Duran-9.5 *Half-Price Books
71. Reach The Beach, The Fixx-8.5 *Half-Price Books

November:

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72. From The Mars Hotel, The Greatful Dead-9.5
73. New York Dolls, New York Dolls-8.0
74. Wide Awake!, Parquet Courts-9.0
75. Full Moon Fever, Tom Petty-8.0
76. Around the World in a Day, Prince and the Revolution-8.5
77. Fun House, The Stooges-9.0
78. Aftermath, The Rolling Stones-10.0
79. St. Vincent, St. Vincent-8.0
80. Sublime, Sublime-8.5

December:

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81. Piano Man, Billy Joel-9.0
82. Hummingbird, Local Natives-6.0
83. Into The Great Wide Open, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers-8.5
84. Against The Wind, Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band-9.0
85. My Generation, The Who-9.0
86. A Night At The Opera, Queen-10.0 *YouTube
87. 154, Wire-9.5 *YouTube
88. Eat a Peach, The Allman Brothers-9.0
89. Baby Driver OST, Various-9.5
90. Night Drive, Chromatics-9.0 *YouTube
91. The Smiths, The Smiths-8.5 *YouTube
92. Strangeways, Here We Come, The Smiths-9.5 *YouTube

Horrorfest 2016 Presents: The Invitation (2015, Karyn Kusama)


The Invitation and Starry Eyes are both slow burning horror dramas that despite their weaker elements are still solid and worth seeing. They both deal with how damaged people are easily manipulated into going along with concepts and ideas that are harmful to others and to themselves. Both have endings that are a big payoff, and both feature at least one character who realizes what is going on long before anyone else figures it out. I do wonder if maybe it’s California’s history with cults and violence that has resulted in so many horror films being set in that particular area. Noirs such as Chinatown also present the area’s dark side, usually hinting at evil lurking beneath.

Yet The Invitation reminds us also that evil is not so black and white, that is rests in the hearts and minds of people. They can be our friends, loved ones, relatives or people we are acquainted with. Will, the film’s haunted protagonist, understands that all too well in the end. He is cursed with figuring out the reason why his friends and him are at his ex wife’s house, a place that used to be his long ago in a different life. Too bad that he only figures it out later, and that of course the others present don’t believe him. One scene I liked was when Will is screaming in pain, only its internal. His suffering becomes tangible, present to the audience.

While this film takes too long to get going, when it finally does it has a presence that is very engaging. I often wonder if a terrible incident would be enough to push me into coming under the spell of a manipulative individual. Yet I realize that in one way or another it’s easy to be manipulated, to have the illusion of control. That’s a far more unnerving thought than any horror film.

Horrorfest 2015 Presents: God Told Me To (1976, Larry Cohen)


Opening with a killing spree that feels ripped from today’s headlines, God Told Me To feels all too relevant in today’s blood soaked present. The cop who tries to find out why a seemingly normal man would murder people without cause or reason is coldly presented with an eerie sentence where ever he goes: “God told me to.” The opener is chaotic and terrifying, ending in tragedy.

The police fail to see a motive even though others continue to kill, stating the exact reason the first murderer did. The cop, Peter (Tony Lo Bianco) runs up against his own police force and ends up digging into his own past, revealing unanswered questions that might lead to a nightmarish future. At the heart of all of this is a cult leader who may not even be of this world. Cohen frames all of this in stark, realistic and eerie fashon, crafting scenes of pure tension.

Even more interesting is that the film has two particularly strong female characters, played by Deborah Raffin and Sandy Dennis. How they relate to and figure into what Peter is going through establish and ground the movie in a plausible reality. They also realize only too late the deep issues that Peter has, although his wife mediates upon Peter’s obsession with religion. One harrowing scene involves Peter dealing with his perceived sins in a church, a moment that reminds me of the works of Abel Ferrera.

Naturally all of this craziness boils to a shocking and chilling finale. Cohen is an underrated auteur that made different and interesting films, some horror, some crime, often mixing the two and giving us a film such as God Told Me To. Not too many films made in the 1970s have stayed relevant, yet what may be Cohen’s finest creation is still very applicable today. Particularly with the recent killing sprees and the rise of religious fanaticism.

Horrorfest 2014 Presents: Red State (2011, Kevin Smith)


Although half of this film is an action/suspense filled politically charged film, overall it is a horror movie. The film begins with a trio of young men being tricked by a religious fanatical cult in a scene that is terrifying and harrowing to witness. Michael Parks takes over this film as Reverend Abin Cooper, who preaches to a group of people that do not believe in reason or logic. Having to watch a friend of yours die because a bunch of people decided it was God’s will is a messed up moment that happens in the film. From that point on the situation escalates from there, as the cult kills a local cop and draws the ire of the ATF, led by Agent Joseph Keenan (John Goodman). These events result in the ATF and the cult fighting each other in a violent struggle that mirrors the violence that occurred at Ruby Ridge and Waco back in the 90s.

Despite being rather obvious with his political commentary Kevin Smith crafts another well made picture, one that in some ways is different from his other movies. This is the first horror movie he has made, and its a good one, right up with his best films and full of surprises. The ending is a bit of a letdown and not all that funny, yet the rest of the movie has some dark humor and the part where one of the boys that was kidnapped attempts to escape is tense and thrilling. Red State condemns both sides in this film, as the ATF ends up bumbling their way through the situation while the Five Points Trinity Church cult gets many of their members killed instead of surrendering in the first place and avoiding the bloodshed. Michael Parks gives a commanding performance and Goodman delivers something quieter and more insightful, especially near the end with his mediation upon the dark nature of humanity. Oh and the actual ending that Smith decided not to go with would have been far more interesting if even more outlandish than how the movie actually concluded. Huh.

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