Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Still 10 weeks til Todd album

Seems that after all the hype about the new album coming out 'in weeks', and maybe even this month, the New Todd album will not actually be released until 29th/30th September - that's 10 WEEKS away.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Todd on things

Houston Chronicle has a nice piece on Todd talking about the new album, making music (""Now I can lead a sort of normal life, get up in the morning and have breakfast and then go off to a room somewhere and work without me having to become the hermit of Mink Hollow, as it were."), 30 Rock and other things. He also gives some views on his productions:

Bat Out of Hell , Meat Loaf (1977): "I thought it was a parody of Bruce Springsteen...I was just chuckling the whole time, and I'm still chuckling. I can't believe the world took it seriously"
Skylarking , XTC (1986): "That's one that more people got to hear some than some of the others. Even though it was like pulling teeth, Skylarking is one of my favorite records"
Love Junk , Pursuit of Happiness (1988): "There are a lot of bands I thought should be huge, and everybody who's heard them thinks the same thing. Pursuit of Happiness put on a great show and wrote the greatest pop songs. They just didn't have the label that was able to break them or the management to come up with a strategy to get them the attention they deserved"

Skylarking and Love Junk remain big favourites of mine. As is now well known, whilst Todd and Moe Berg got on like a house on fire, Todd and Andy Partridge - er ... were a house on fire and did not hit it off at all, but even Partridge came to admit it was a fine record. “Musician and producer Todd Rundgren squeezed the XTC clay into its most complete/connected/cyclical record ever. Not an easy album to make for various ego reasons but time has humbled me into admitting that Todd conjured up some of the most magical production and arranging conceivable. A summer's day cooked into one cake.”

Meanwhile the Denver Post's reviewer give the Boulder Theatre gig a thumbs up

New Material

Just realised i had forgot to flag up the fact that 'Mad' the first track on the new Todd album is available to listen to over at the myspace site.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

THS - Reviews

The Hold Steady - some of the UK reviews

The Guardian (4/5)

At times, the bloodlust in Craig Finn's growl gets too thirsty. But it's the album's closing lyric - "Man, we make our own movies" - that reveals the secret of this band's special powers. http://arts.guardian.co.uk/filmandmusic/story/0,,2289926,00.html

The Times (3/5) remain less convinced by THS - There is a truth that Finn and Co often hit the sauce but for me, the Scala gig last year was where the music suffered most not the Borderline, which was a fantastic gig.

"Everything about the way they play - especially on the rickety uplift of Yeah Sapphire, Magazines and Sequestered in Memphis - invites you to see them as the E Street Band to Finn's Springsteen, so much so that it would be obtuse to resist. As with the E Street Band, instruments are identifiable, but only as the chunks in their dense sonic tiffin. That's the best thing about the Hold Steady."

On Finn's talent "If he isn't careful, these songs will become consolation prizes doled out to recipients that he may, in time, come to despise."

NME (9/10) meanwhile proclaim "This is a record, and indeed a band, that doesn't simply want to entertain, but to make the lives of its listeners better" and stated that 'Stay Positive' not only confirms The Hold Steady's status as one of the best rock'n'roll bands in the world, but establishes them as one of its most important too. Frankly, album five can't come soon enough."Despite this, reviewer, James McMahon, says the albums low point where the band's "impeccable standards drop", is on what i think is one the album's best cuts - 'Sequestered In Memphis'

The Daily Mirror's reviewer (3/5) says that "Slashing guitars, air-punching choruses and lyrical piano passages are all familiar, but the dazed ballad Lord, I'm Discouraged stands out from the energetic, blustery whole."