DANN BAKER is freelance editor, writer, and musician living in Brooklyn. His musical projects have included Love Camp 7 and the late, lamented (?) Admiral Porkbrain, a Beefheart cover band.
OCT 2014 | Music
At 25 minutes and change, Neblung Prices latest CD is the approximate duration of one of those early-60s Beach Boys offeringsShut Down Vol. 2 maybe.
OCT 2011 | Music
Bryan Watermans Marquee Moon and Cyrus R. K. Patells Some Girls were conceived in tandem: The authors, both humanities professors at N.Y.U., are friends who share a personal/professional fascination with New York punk/street culture of the 1970s. This twin portrait of New Yorks halcyon rock era represents the fruit of their efforts.
JUL-AUG 2007 | Music
Living up to its back-of-jacket testimonials (from no less than Eno, Kate Bush, and Nick Kent), Joe Boyds new memoir White Bicycles is indeed a must-read, especially for those in need of a hype-free perspective on an over-discussed, over-analyzed, and over-sentimentalized era.
DEC 04-JAN 05 | Music
Conlon Nancarrow is very much in fashion at the moment. The late composer has been referenced in The Wire magazine, Columbia Universitys Miller Theatre is presenting a Nancarrow festival this season, and new-music critic Kyle Gann has come out with a full-length study (available only at Lincoln Center, and priced at $90; you can bet its jumping off the shelves).
NOV 2003 | Music
The Long Goodbye Merge Records
I never knew exactly who the Essex Green were. I think for a while I had them confused with Ladybug Transistor (with whom they shared members). I knew they lived in a big house in Kensington (Brooklyn) and recorded in the basementor was that Ladybug Transistor? And this guy I know played with them on occasionor was it with Ladybug Transistor? Since they were affiliated with the Elephant Six label, I assumed they purveyed a lite, melodic brand of neo-psych-pop not readily distinguishable from Of Montreal, Elf Power, or Apples in Stereo.
MAY-JUNE 2001 | Music
The toxicity of indie rock hypedom is so extreme that sometimes I feel like turning my back on the whole furshlugginer mess: the uncomfortable clubs with wretched acoustics, the zines brimming with smug orthodoxies, the buzz around gimmicky bands-of-the-moment.
FEB 2011 | Music
Its easy to forget that popular music has the capacity to subvert. Thankfully, Ive been reminded of the fact lately by a trio of insightful books, which, by chance (or unconscious design) all point to two particular flash points: Central Avenue and the Sunset Strip in Los Angeles.
DEC 08-JAN 09 | Music
Ive been a fan of Chad and Jeremys The Ark for some time. I discovered the album after hearing Rest in Peace, from their previous release (1967s Of Cabbages and Kings), on the radio.
SEPT 2006 | Music
The cover of Peter Doyles Echo and Reverb is promising as hella red-rock mesa (New Mexico?) into which intrudes a vintage Shure microphone, next to an intriguing subtitle: Fabricating Space in Popular Music Recording, 19001960. Im a sucker for such oblique, scholarly tomes; I mean, now that the Beatles story has been told a hundred times over, whats left? Auspicously, theres a university-press logo on the spine and, of course, no illustrations. Plus, very small type.
OCT 2005 | Music
There is nothing as strange as that which is absolutely ordinary. Yep. It’s a lesson I learned long ago from Eraserhead, Grant Wood’s American Gothic, and the motel portraits of Ed Ruscha.
WINTER 2003 | Music
I discovered Eddie Durham one night not long ago, as I tuned up my radio to the marvelously pedantic Phil Schaap on WKCR-FM.