I did a little playlist shuffle on January 1st to get a prediction of how 2012 is gonna be. A musical version of Tarot cards, if you will.

1. Athenaeum – Flat Tire

2. Bare, Jr. – You Blew Me Off

3. Cross Canadian Ragweed – Burn Like the Sun

(Hmmm, seems like its going to be a rough start in the romance area)

4. REM – Every Day is Yours to Win

5. Big Star – You Get What You Deserve

(Well, there are a couple of rays of hope…although Big Star could go either way. I think I’ll take the positive interpretation.)

6. The Byrds – Glory, Glory
(Maybe I should take this as a sign I need to be going to church. The world is going to end, after all)

7. Drive-By Truckers – Why Henry Drinks
(A warning against even thinking about getting back with ex? Don’t worry…ain’t happening)

8. Hellbound Glory – In the Gutter Again
(Another warning against getting back with the ex, ’cause in the gutter is where I’ll end up)

9. The Smithereens – House We Used to Live In
(All right, I get it. STAY AWAY FROM THE EX! Point made. Can we please move on.)

10. The Flaming Lips – She Don’t Use Jelly
(Much like the song, I don’t know what this is supposed to mean)
(AIV Note: Me neither but it sounds uncomfortable. Like sex in the back of a Volkswagen)

11. Justin Townes Earle – Halfway to Jackson
(Great. More woman trouble.)

12. Material Issue – This Letter
(I’m gonna get all creepy/stalkery on someone? I’m embarrassed to say, it would be history repeating itself.)

13. Georgia Satellites – Six Years Gone
(Are we back on the ex again? Although, it was more like sixTEEN years gone. I guess I have to take what the music spirits have to work with.)

14. Paul Thorn – Tequila is Good for the Heart
(Why, yes…yes it is! Especially with all the woman trouble I’m gonna have.)

15. Drivin’ & Cryin’ – Preapproved, Predenied
(I guess I better not expect any pay raises. A nice warning for an election year.)

Overall, I guess same as last year. Romance is gonna be shaky, stay away from the ex, and don’t even think about getting rich. Could be worse, I guess.


I thought I’d bang out a couple of pieces that have been floating around in my Google Docs account in various forms of incompletion and combine them into one post instead of just deleting them. Sometimes it’s hard to find something to say about every. single. cd you like, but I’ll usually at least give it a shot. These are those shots:

The Crooks – Lonesome, Rowdy and Restless
The Crooks are from Austin and Lonesome, Rowdy and Restless is an EP that’s intended to act as a precursor for an upcoming full-length. They have a classic country/western high lonesome sound that’s been run through a modernizing filter. The EP is well worth picking up for 3 dollars and I am looking forward to hearing this full-length.

The Crooks – Downtown

Justin Otto – The $7 EP
Justin Otto is a one man band out of Pensacola, Florida. The Seven Dollar EP is his debut release and you can get it from him for the surprising cost of 7 dollars. The EP is strongest when Justin is playing his original music (there are some odd cover choices on it) and tracks like “Where I Lead Me” and “Sun” leave me excited to see what he does on his debut full-legth scheduled for release sometime later this year.

Justin Otto – Sun

Farmer Not so John
Man, I’d never heard of Farmer Not So John before last month when my friend Beverly played them while guest hosting ninebullets radio. They put out two albums, Farmer Not so John (1997) and Receiver (1998), and they both prove that good music is timeless.

Farmer Not So John – Paper Thin

The Smithereens – 2011
At first. I was just gonna ignore this album. Then, after hearing NPR’s gushing review of the album I was gonna do a “What Not To Buy” post about it. In the end, I was able to muster up about as much passion and effort to review this album as it feels the band did to write it. I’d “try before you buy” this one if I were you.

The Smithereens – One Look At You

Cahalen Morrison & Eli West – The Holy Coming Of The Storm
Cahalen Morrison & Eli West come out of Seattle. The Holy coming Of The Storm really is a fantastic album full of that bluegrass/folk sound you normally hear at the county fair. Unfortunately, every time I sit down to write about the album I just can’t seem to come up with more than those two sentences. So, stream the album below and if you like it, buy it.

Jeremy Joyce – The By And By
This EP came to me via Reviewshine but you can download it for free from Jeremy’s website. Sometimes the EP is straight forward country rock and at others it’s kinda like a 50’s rock record with a little twang. I find it most interesting when it’s doing the latter.

Jeremy Joyce – 18 Wheels


Summer Blinked. For portions of the world, mid 80’s in the day and upper 60’s at night would be summer, but for a Floridian this is open the windows and wave farewell to the hellbeast that is a tropical summer.

For me, with fall comes an overwhelming sense of nostalgia. I’m not really sure what exactly it is about the break in the oppressive heat that makes me run for the music of my youth, but without fail, the first hint of fall finds me scurrying for Violent Femmes, The Smithereens, Thrill Kill Kult and Concrete Blonde albums to blast as I drive down the interstate with with windows down.

Anyhow, my good buddies that I’ve never met, Concrete Blonde, made this trip down nostalgia road even more awesome with the 20th Anniversary re-release of Bloodletting. First….HOLY SHIT! CAN YOU FUCKING BELIEVE BLOODLETTING IS 20 FUCKING YEARS OLD? Fucking hell, me neither, but at least that explains all the knee pains I have when I bend down.

Twenty years or not, driving across the bridge in the upper 60’s with the windows down and “Days and Days” at full volume makes me want a cigarette and a notepad to rail against society in, but then I guess the kids use Livejournal for that these days.

I you’re a Concrete Blonde fan, I’d advise picking up the 20 YEAR ANNIVERSARY (wtf?) remastered release of Bloodletting (buy here), ‘cause “Tomorrow, Wendy” is even clearer, crisper, more angry. Perfect for chilly mornings.

Concrete Blonde – Tomorrow, Wendy
Concrete Blonde – Days and Days
Concrete Blonde – I Don’t Need A Hero

The Smithereens – Blues Before and After
The Smithereens – A Girl Like You

My Life With The Thrill Kill Kult – Kooler Than Jesus
My Life With The Thrill Kill Kult – Sex On Wheelz

Violent Femmes – Good Feeling
Violent Femmes – American Music

What do you reach for when you’re chasing a nostalgia high?