Leor Galil, Reader music writer, is obsessed with . . .
Lukach, “Move” According to Liel Leibovitz of Tablet magazine, an overweight, scruffy-looking rapper named Lukach recently helped revive Israel’s hip-hop scene. The dude hooked me with his single “Move,” a banger whose squelching synths and hollow boom-bap snare give Lukach’s raw flow a sinister edge—no grasp of Hebrew required.
Biz Markie’s playable “Just a Friend” postcard Boston label Get on Down has been on a roll lately with the Fat Boys pizza box and a handful of Wu Tang solo-album reissues, and its project with Biz Markie keeps up that streak. Get on Down recently reissued 1989’s The Biz Never Sleeps as a picture disc, and the package includes a “Just a Friend” postcard with circular grooves pressed right into Biz’s face that will play the tune like a flexi single if you toss it on a turntable. I’m waiting till I have a few close friends nearby before I give the card its first spin.
Bargain Bin Blasphemy A Tumblr user calling himself (or herself) “the Blasphemer” buys old and presumably cheap Christmas albums and pop LPs and gives them black-metal makeover. I never thought I’d say Wayne Newton looks evil, but that was before I saw him on the cover of While We’re Still Young with corpse paint and blood on his face and a battle-ax in his hand.
He asks . . .
Jesse Menendez, Vocalo host and producer, what he’s obsessed with. His answers are . . .
P.O.S., We Don’t Even Live Here The fourth album from Minneapolis MC and Doomtree cofounder P.O.S. is an aggressive sociopolitical look at the state of hip-hop and our country’s love affair with commercialism. Throughout its 11 raucous, punk-infused tracks, P.O.S. makes the assertion that through capitalism and materialism the world has mutated beyond habitation, so much so that it’s like we don’t even live here anymore.
The Internet Radio Fairness Act Musicians have been fighting for fair compensation for generations, and late last year the fight returned once more to Capitol Hill. Online radio stations—including Pandora—are lobbying Congress to pass the Internet Radio Fairness Act (HR 6480 and S3609). If passed, it could cut the amount of money an artist receives from Internet-radio royalties by up to 85 percent. This bill would affect mainstream and indie artists alike, and there’s nothing fair about it. Wouldn’t a better description of this legislation be “We want Congress to lower the cost of running our businesses by cheating musicians”?
We Appreciate Your Enthusiasm: The Oral History of Q101 by James VanOsdol Remember when alternative rock was actually an alternative to something? Before the genre was defined by acts like Nickelback, there were bands like the Cure, and in Chicago one radio station—Q101—chronicled the genre’s rise and eventual descent into commercial mediocrity. We Appreciate Your Enthusiasm captures the station’s behind-the-scenes story from start to finish—Mancow, Sludge, and all.
He asks . . .
Richard Giraldi, Loud Loop Press founder and Rodeo guitarist, what he’s obsessed with. His answers are . . .
The Rolling Stones’ “Sympathy for the Devil” I’ve been on a major Rolling Stones kick ever since I checked out their new documentary, Crossfire Hurricane. It has some really great footage from the ’69 tour, which was documented on the excellent live album Get Yer Ya-Ya’s Out! After revisiting the record, I’d say that the tour’s “Sympathy for the Devil” is far better than the studio version because of its confident, shrugged-off looseness. It’s really just a repeating four-chord groove, but the guitar interplay between Keith Richards and Mick Taylor is something special.
The Meters I was ecstatic to see the Meters nominated for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, even though they didn’t end up inducted for 2013. After living in New Orleans for five years, I got tired of a lot of the city’s music—mainly brass bands—but I fell in love with the Meters and the way they shaped not only New Orleans funk but early hip-hop as well.
James Bond theme songs Skyfall was great, and Adele’s theme oozes a powerful sophistication. A month before the movie’s release, the Sun-Times‘s Thomas Conner posted a killer Spotify playlist of all the James Bond themes. Some are bona fide classics, among them Nancy Sinatra’s “You Only Live Twice” and Shirley Bassey’s “Goldfinger.” But a few of the more recent entries really work for me, including Sheryl Crow’s dark and lusty “Tomorrow Never Dies”—and even though Tina Turner’s “Goldeneye” sounds like it was produced on a Casio keyboard, it’s pretty rad too.