Unplugged

JukeBox

Pink Floyd - The Wall (1979)

While many punk fans happily went to gigs to gob at their heroes on stage in the late 1970s, one star – from a completely different genre – decided to spit back.     Roger Waters had grown sick at the perceived lack of contact between the audience and a band who, during the In the Flesh tour, were sometimes playing in...

Paul McCartney - Egypt Station (2018)

Sir Paul McCartney at 76 years of age, a superstar since he was 20, shows no signs of slowing down on his ‘long and winding road’. He has just released his 18th solo album titled Egypt Station and we’re going to take a look and a listen. When you’ve achieved as much as “Macca” (McCartney) in music over the decades, and have...

The Verve - Urban Hymns (1997)

A Northern Soul, the The Verve’s second album was an artistic success but not so much commercial. Launched in the heat of Britpop it did not manage to enter the British Top Ten and barely had repercussion outside Britian. The recording had been chaos and the band decided to separate. But a few days later Richard Ashcroft, their...

Thin Lizzy - Vagabonds of the Western World (1973)

When in 1973 Thin Lizzy went into the studio to record 'Vagabonds of the Western World' they already had two albums behind them that had not gone anywhere, and they were just one of the many bands that flirted with hard rock. Their only glimpse of massive success had been an excellent version of the traditional Irish song Whiskey In The Jar,...

Ray Davies - Our Country: Americana Act II (2018)

Ex-Kink Ray Davies is clearly fascinated by America’s contradictions of excitement and glamour on the one hand, and wild - often brutally violent - behaviour on the other.    Our Country: Americana Act II (released 29 June on Sony Legacy) explores these themes, but it is also part of a much bigger project. In 2013...

Lou Reed - Rock 'n' Roll Animal (1974)

In 1973 Lou Reed had recorded the most ambitious and depressing album of his career, Berlin. An album in which he depended on a number of elite players such as Jack Bruce, Steve Winwood, Aynsley Dunbar, and the Brecker brothers, and also a pair of ace session guitarists Steve Hunter and Dick Wagner. When Reed wanted to introduce the record live,...

Florence + The Machine - High As Hope (2018)

High as Hope (released 29 June 2018 on Republic/Virgin EMI Records) is the fourth studio album by Florence and the Machine, following 2015’s How Big How Blue How Beautiful. Both albums are intimate and theatrical in style, but to write her latest album lead singer/songwriter Florence Welch reportedly quit alcohol, read books and...

Johnny Winter - Second Winter (1969)

Johnny “the Texas Albino” Winter cut his second record for Columbia Records in 1969 titled Second Winter, an 11-song, 3-sided album (2 LPs, the fourth side was left blank) that some consider to be his finest work. It shows the famed bluesman in something of a transitional move towards rock and roll, honky-tonk, and swing, with raging energy and...

Wilko Johnson - Blow Your Mind (2018)

So the man is back with Blow Your Mind, (15 June 2018; Chess/UMC) containing 12 new songs, on an album he never thought he’d live to see.       Ex-Dr Feelgood guitar legend Wilko Johnson returned in 2012 following his ‘terminal’ pancreatic cancer diagnosis by recording Going Back Home with Roger Daltrey, which...

The White Stripes - White Blood Cells (2001)

Anyone who has ever dreamed of making a hit album might look at White Blood Cells (released 3 July, 2001) and wonder how the American duo, known as the White Stripes, did it.       Jack and Meg White spent just one week in a studio in Memphis to produce these 16 songs, which Rolling Stone magazine later placed in...

Dave Matthews Band - Come Tomorrow (2018)

Dave Matthews Band ninth studio release Come Tomorrow (8 June 2018, Bama Rags/RCA) has gone to number 1 on the Billboard 200 chart, reportedly making them the first group ever to have seven studio albums in a row hit that top spot. Not bad for this talented band of musicians whose strength is often considered to be in their live...

The Rolling Stones - Beggar's Banquet (1968)

Beggar's Banquet is the beginning of the fundamental period in the Rolling Stones career. Here they return to the roots of blues, country and early rock but this time with a sound of their own, the sound for which they are still remembered. Recorded in magical sessions between March and June of 1968, while the world burned with student...

Johnny Marr - Call The Comet (2018)

Johnny Marr released Call The Comet on June 1, his third and most self-assured solo outing following The Messenger (2013) and Playland (2014).   In many ways, lyrically, it is a reaction to Trump’s election, Brexit and other recent events such as the Manchester bombing, and is reportedly based on him imagining a better...

Pink Floyd - A Saucerful of Secrets (1968)

Fifty years ago this week Pink Floyd released their 2nd album A Saucerful of Secrets (June 29, 1968). It was the only Floyd album to contain all 5 legendary members, Roger Waters/bass, vocals, David Gilmour/guitar,vocals, Richard Wright/keyboards, vocals, Nick Mason/drums, and Roger “Syd” Barrett/guitar, vocals, and was produced by Norman...

The Kinks Are The Village Green Preservation Society (1968)

At a time when the world had gone crazy with experimentation, the ‘loops’, the tapes played in reverse, psychedelia, and 17-minute songs, Ray Davies decided it was time to get nostalgic, to get lost in the days of our youth and memories of the English countryside on the way to extinction. Here there were no trips, nor LSD, nor long solos or...

Parquet Courts - Wide Awake!

What would Brian Burton, aka Danger Mouse, - who has produced albums for bands as big as the Red Hot Chili Peppers, U2, and Black Keys - get out of producing punk band Parquet Courts’ new record Wide Awake! (Rough Trade, 18 May)?   The answer seems to be a strong candidate for album of the year.     Some...

The Rolling Stones - Some Girls (1978)

By the end of the seventies, the Stones had become - in the eyes of a young, untapped and futureless youth - the maximum example of a dinosaur group. Punk splashed like spit in the face of the great rock and roll bands. Mick Jagger wanted to respond with one of the rawest records of the band, Some girls. Another fundamental fact of the album...

Ry Cooder - The Prodigal Son (2018)

It was always going to be interesting to see where Ry Cooder would head next, following his 2012 explicitly politically-oriented album, Election Special.     At first sight it might seem that Cooder has ‘been reborn’ in true Bob Dylan style, as he references Jesus, wrote and sings the title track, The Prodigal Son,...

Iron Butterfly - In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida (1968)

The 1960s USA were a tumultuous time of civil rights marches, women’s liberation, anti-war movements against the raging conflict in Vietnam, ‘flower power’ and the ‘summer of love’ in 1967 was when hippies (hair grown to the hips) denounced consumerism, protested the capitalistic system, and turned to “mary jane” (pot) and acid (LSD)...