Search This Blog

Friday, February 22, 2019

Dolly Parton Honored as Musicares "Person Of The Year"

On February 8th some of the biggest names in music including Pink, Willie Nelson, Miley Cyrus, Brandi Carlile, Kacey Musgraves and others honored the legendary Dolly Parton as Musicares "Person Of The Year". The annual gala and concert took place at the Los Angeles Convention Center and kicked off Grammy Weekend in fine form. Musicares provides a safety net of critical assistance for music people in times of need and the event raised nearly 7 Million Dollars for the organization.

“I wanted to thank you for this night,” said Parton. “I truly am honored to be the MusiCares’ Person of the Year. And, the first country music artist to be honored. That’s a great honor.”

Parton was recognized by the Grammy Foundation and Musicares for her Imagination Library program which is a book gifting program she started in 1995 that mails free, high-quality books to children from birth until they begin school, no matter their family’s income.

Dolly explained...“I started that program because of my dad who could not read nor write,”. “But he was one of the smartest people because of that. But, it was kind of crippling to him. I’ve often wondered what my daddy might of been if he had been able to read and write.” She continued “When I started it, I thought it was going to just be in our home county, maybe a couple of counties over but it turned out that we took it all over Tennessee and it went on into Canada, and now we’re all over different parts of the world.”

Pink started off the night with a stunning version of "Jolene", while Brandi Carlile and Willie Nelson quickly followed with “Everything’s Beautiful (In Its Own Way),” which Parton originally recorded with Nelson in 1982. Other highlights included Don Henley and Vince Gill teaming up on “Eagle When She Flies", Norah Jones rendition of "The Grass Is Blue" and Yolanda Adams powerful version of "I Will Always Love You". Dolly closed out the evening with a heartwarming performance of "Coat of Many Colors" accompanied by producer/songwriter Linda Perry on guitar. It was truly a tremendous evening for everyone in attendance.

Friday, January 25, 2019

Five For Friday with Michael Alago

Michael Alago is a true inspiration and amazing individual. His story on how he grew up in the New York City underground music scene to becoming one of the most influential and ground breaking people in the music industry was captured in the documentary "Who The F**k Is That Guy". Michael talks about some of his all time favorite songs in this weeks edition of "Five For Friday" but first watch the trailer for the film which is currently streaming on Netflix.

Alice Cooper "Hello Horray"

June 3, 1973 was my first concert ever. I was 13 years old and it was the last night of the Billion Dollar Babies tour for the Alice Cooper band at Madison Square Garden. This opening number and the whole theatricality of it all altered the course of my entire life.

Lou Reed "Rock 'N' Roll Animal"

In 1974 I got my hands on a copy of Lou Reed "Rock ‘n’ Roll Animal" which is probably one of the more awesome live recordings ever. Never mind that listening to the intro of the song "Sweet Jane" totally blew my mind. Steve Hunter was the guitarist that played the solo on that tune and was a force to be reckoned with. I think I played that song the entire year.

Todd Rundgren "Hello it’s Me"

I heard this tune on the radio in the 70s and hearing his voice for the first time blew me away. There was a yearning quality in it that made me want to hear more of that voice and his music so I purchased the double album "Something/ Anything". The album artwork had a gate fold sleeve and I studied every aspect of it over and over. The songs, personnel, production I wanted to absorb everything about this recording. Remember Todd is God.

Blue Öyster Cult "Don't Fear The Reaper"

At first listen this could’ve been sung by the Beach Boys but of course it was way too dark. I was completely taken by the song the moment I heard it because it didn’t sound like anything else that was being played on Classic Rock radio. There was this grand and emotional sweep to the entire production. The rich harmonies were just so beautiful that i immediately went to my local record shop in Brooklyn and purchased the album "Agents of Fortune". I was now hooked on Blue Öyster Cult.

Aretha Franklin "Respect"

R-E-S-P-E-C-T. In my youth I listened to a lot of Dan Ingram on 77 WABC radio. This might’ve been the first time I heard Aretha and it was the voice of God,the voice of an angel singing like no other. R-E-S-P-E-C-T and sock it to me sock it to me sock it to me sock it to me! Produced by Jerry Wexler and Arif Mardin engineered by Tom Dowd. Man oh man it don’t get no better than this. EVER!

Friday, December 28, 2018

CMM's 10 Favorite Albums of 2018

1. Courtney Barnett "Tell Me How You Really Feel"

I Probably played this album 1,000 times this year. So many amazing songs that really speak to you. The record really cements Courtney as one of the best new songwriters around.

2. Joan Of Arc "1984"

One of the bands best yet. Songs like "Real Punk Kid" and "Tiny Baby" combine experimental elements with traditional songwriting in the finest way possible.

3. Body/Head "The Switch"

This album is full of amazing hypnotic, mind bending noise and I can't get enough. The tracks really take you to another place with each and every listen.

4. Merzbow "Exoking"

Another masterpiece from the king of noise. Amazing tones and beautiful packaging as always.

5. Alles Club "Décollage"

This album is truly EPIC. I really can't say enough great things about it. Highly original and inspiring.

6. Statue "Casper"

Amazing guitar and drum tones fill this album alongside incredible musicianship and song arrangements. Top notch across the board.

7. Guided By Voices "Space Gun"

Another stellar album from the most prolific band in the world. Lead singles "Space Gun" and "See My Field" are instant GBV classics.

8. Frankie Teardrop Dead "All You Need Is Love And Fucking Peace"

One of the most colorful and uplifting psychedelic records of the year. Can't get enough of this one.

9. Netherlands "Black Gia"

Another skull crushing release from this NYC metal/sci-fi unit. Intense and menacing with a twist of new wave energy.

10. Casino Garden "Ride"

A brilliant blend of shoegaze and psychedelia. One of the most beautiful albums of 2018.


Wednesday, December 26, 2018

CMM's 10 Favorite Shows of 2018

1. Dead Boys - Bowery Electric - NYC - 1/28/18

This reformed line up of The Dead Boys has been tearing it up all over the world for the last few years and I've been happy to get to see them play a couple of times. This show was no exception as lead singer Jake Hout channeled the spirit of Stiv Bators in grand fashion while Cheetah Chrome blasted through the blistering riffs that make this band amazing. Can't wait to catch them again in 2019.

2. Desert Daze Festival (My Bloody Valentine, Slowdive, Mercury Rev, Kevin Morby and more) - Lake Perris California -10/12-10/14 2018

There are a lot of Festivals that offer unbelievable line ups these days but none were quite like this years Desert Daze Festival in Lake Perris California. Yes this festival was truly "STACKED" with performances from My Bloody Valentine, Sowdive, Mercury Rev, Kevin Morby, Earth and many many more. I must add that this festival had one of the most laid back feels to it which can be rare these days. Everyone was really respectful and watching the bands was comfortable while the sound and lighting were top notch.

3. Joan Of Arc - Elsewhere - NYC - 10/3/18

This show was a last minute surprise. I had not seen Joan Of Arc in about a year and a half and their latest album "1984" was one of my favorites of the year. I realized the morning of the show they were opening for mewithoutyou. Joan Of Arc performed as a three piece and the set included some amazing new material alongside some of my favorites from recent LP's. This was a really fun set to see.

4. Merzbow (at Hospital Festival) - Knockdown Center- NYC - 12/8/18

Hospital Fest was a tremendous event and I could go on and on about all of the acts that performed but I ain't gonna lie I was there to see Merzbow as I've been a fan for roughly 25 years and had never seen him perform before. His hour long set was intense, colorful and incredibly mind bending. Other highlights from his event included Jesu, Final (Justin Broadrick), and the Prurient/Power Trip collaboration.

5. "Sally Suicide" Suicide Tribute - Bowery Electric - NYC - 1/25/18

Incredible tribute evening to Alan Vega and Suicide which featured performances from Bob Bert, Cynthia Ross, Kid Congo Powers and more. The highlight for me was when The Car's Ric Ocasek joined Martin Rev for a performance of "Dream Baby Dream". A great evening indeed.

6. Turkish Delight (Reunion) - The Middle East - Cambridge MA - 7/20/18

It's not everyday that your favorite band gets back together to do a show after a 20 year hiatus but on July 20th 2018 Turkish Delight took the stage at the legendary Middle East in Cambridge MA. The band played tracks from their two albums "Tommy Bell" and "Howcha Magowcha" as well as a stunning rendition of "Damaged Goods" by Gang Of Four. They even let me join them onstage for a ripping rendition of their classic cut "Go Baby" which was a a real honor and thrill. Such an awesome time.

7. Nine Inch Nails, Jesus And Mary Chain - Kings Theater - Brooklyn NY - 10/16/18

First off Kings Theater might be the most beautiful venue in Brooklyn and one of the best places to see a large scale show. Jesus And Mary Chain put on a solid set of some of their most well known songs which was certainly an amazing way to start the evening. Then Nine Inch Nails put on one of the most breathtaking performances you will see and hear anywhere in the universe. I'm by no means a NIN fanatic but this show really floored me. The stage production, musicianship, sound an overall presentation where definitely next level.

8. Ministry - Irving Plaza - NYC - 12/6/18

Ministry put on a tremendous performance at Irving Plaza in NYC. It was amazing to hear "Stigmata", "N.W.O.", "So What" and "Just One Fix" in a live setting again. The crowd was super into it and the band played the tracks with "pinpoint accuracy". Menacing to say the least.

9. Netherlands - Brooklyn Bazaar - Brooklyn NY - 10/20/18

Simply put this band DESTROY everything in their path. The crushing guitar sound and sci-fi-psych vocals of Timo Ellis are relentless and this performance was one of the most intense I came across all year.

10. Men I Trust - Charlies American Cafe - Norfolk Virginia - 3/19/18

It was great to see Men I Trust in one of my favorite intimate venues. The band played a lot of songs from their recent album "Headroom" and their infectious bass lines and in the pocket drumming had the crowd dancing along while Emma's vocals sounded as beautiful as you can imagine.

Thursday, December 20, 2018

CMM's 18 Favorite Songs of 2018

This year was full of some truly incredible songs from new up and coming artists as well as established bands we already know and love . It was hard to narrow this down but here are 18 of my favorite songs from 2018.

1. Joan Of Arc "Real Punk Kid"

A true anthem. One of the most heartfelt and uplifting songs I've heard in years. Vibrant, intense and powerful.

2. Courtney Barnett "Charity"

Such a catchy track with some of the best lyrics I heard all year. Very uplifting yet melancholy at the same time. My favorite track from Courtney's latest album "Tell Me How You Really Feel".

3. Spiritualized "I'm Your Man"

Incredible dynamics, lyrics that hit home and one of the best guitar solos you will ever hear.

4. Witch Watch "Seconds"

A down right infectious song from this Minneapolis based band. Don't be surprised if you find yourself humming along to this halfway through the first listen. Golden.

5. Superchunk "Eraser"

What a hook. This band just gets better and better with age. Probably sang along to this 1,000 times this year. Sooooo good.

6. Guide By Voices "Space Gun"

Another classic from the most prolific band in rock n roll. Amazing video directed by the incredibly talented Hunter Christy.

7. Mayflower Madame "Premonition"

Another dark, mysterious and truly hypnotic number from Noway's premier psych/goth unit.

8. Jon Spencer "Do The Trash Can"

Pure rock n roll madness. What more would you expect from this garage rock mastermind.

9. Frankie Teardrop Dead "Joy In Division"

Psychedelic, uplifting, mind bending bliss from this London based Psychedelic rock unit. One of the many highlights from their album "All You Need Is Love And Fucking Peace".

10. Valita "Vines"

Powerfully haunting in the most amazing way possible.

11. Casino Garden "Ride"

This song radiates with a unique power and energy like no other. Can't wait to hear what this band does next.

12. Wet Dreams "Bad Boy"

It doesn't get much more rock n roll than this. Do yourself a favor and annihilate your speakers with this one

13. Body/Head "You Don't Need"

A droning, mind bending masterpiece from this experimental guitar duo made up of Kim Gordon and Bill Nace.

14. Deaf Wish "FFS"

So much energy. Killer guitar tones and tons of swagger. Play loudly.

15. Jess Williamson "I See The White"

One of the most well crafted and well performed tracks of 2018. Delightful in every way.

16. Cushing "Snow Angel"

Cushing bring the menace once again with this cagey dirty track from their latest release "Blood Of Cushing".

17. Forth Wanderers "Nevermine"

I love the pace and cadence of this song. A stunning vocal performance that stands over brilliant layers of melodic guitars.

18. Statue "E"

Amazing fuzz guitar sounds, great arrangement and energy. A true gem from the bands latest album "Casper".

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Six Records CMM Wants You To Know

Alles Club "Decollage" LP (

Brazilian-Swiss shoegaze/post rock band Alles Club have released one of the most inspiring LP's I've heard in a long time. The galloping drums that kick off the title track welcome you to a colorful and inspirational world of sound. Soon a symphony of guitars and atmospheric textures fill the speakers while a wash of hypnotic samples round out the sound even more. The faster paced "Quanto Tempo" focuses on Nina Hübscher's incredible voice while "Libélula" is more laid back and psychedelic. "Voando" has a guitar sound reminiscent of "Daydream Nation" era Sonic Youth. It's a really uplifting and fun song to listen to and I find myself going back to this one again and again. "Madrugada" is pure shoegaze as it's layers of reverb drenched guitars and looming bass line are as haunting as they are beautiful. Eventually everything leads to the absolutely stellar sounds of "Canção da Volta" which is highlighted by Isabel Oliveira's stunning vocal delivery. This song explores aspects of jazz, trip-hop, ambient music, classical, experimental and rock all into one song and it's truly amazing. Overall a remarkable achievement for a band that deserves for their music to be heard, enjoyed and respected all over the world. Top LP of 2018.

Goldenaire "Modern Meltdown" E.P. (

Goldenaire show off their amazing musicianship and song writing skills on this new four song E.P. The production, playing and energy levels are all top notch and the songs are all in the two to three minute range so it keeps things moving along swiftly. "Flip Side" is full of melodic, swirling guitars that combine shoegaze nuances with driving rock n roll riffs almost like MBV meets "Repeater" era Fugazi. "Laser Beam" is a hard hitting number that features the intensity of drummer Jeff Meyers alongside Derek Zglenski's rolling bass lines while "Golden Air" has an underlying 80's feel to it that I really enjoy. Vocalist/Guitarist Matt Hanemann shines throughout the entire E.P. but I think my favorite of the four songs is "Nor'Easter" as it channels the likes of The Replacements and Husker Du but with a more atmospheric approach which puts a refreshing spin on it all. I really can't say enough great things about this record. Get into it!!!

Holysun "Don't Care" Single (

Madrid's, Holysun recently dropped this amazing new single and I can't get enough. It's electronic beat, melodic base line and highly textured guitar riff blend together perfectly with the matter of fact style vocal delivery. Truly inspiring in every sense of the word and just as infectious. Hoping to hear an E.P. or LP from this project in the near future.

Oak Meadow "Afterall" E.P. (

Oak Meadow is the brainchild of Boston musician Brian Hennessey. The beautiful guitar based "Concord" really gets things going with it's uplifting spirit and colorful presence. The marching pace of "Set Sail" has a very anthem like feel while the hook filled "Giants" showcases vibrant melodies and glistening undertones that radiate with beaming energy. Other highlights include the keyboard based "Moving On", the though provoking "Away We Go" and the breathtaking "Afterall" which ends with a sea of ambient vocals that really capture what Oak Meadow's sound is all about. High recommended.

RUNSDEEP "Return To Form" E.P. (

Oceanside, California shoegazers RUNSDEEP offer up an impressive batch of songs on their latest E.P. "Return To Form". Opening track "Traders" is driven by a gliding guitar riff and shuffling rhythm that creates a rich, hypnotic effect. "It Knows" also moves in a similar direction but with a little more swagger and hook. It's the type of song that has you humming along by the second verse and I really enjoy the dynamics and tempo changes they create here too. "Been Speeding" has a driving intensity to it while "Sing To Sleep" really mixes it up with an array of fuzzed out guitar sounds and lush atmospheric vocals. Everything winds down with the lulling sounds of "Letting Go" which closes things out in fine form. A truly brilliant E.P. that leaves me wanting more.

Sooner "Stranger" E.P. (

Led by Federica T's delightful vocal delivery, Brooklyn based band Sooner deliver six highly enjoyable tracks on their second E.P. "Stranger". Opening piece "Humid Air" is full of angular riffs that are backed by a pin point rhythm section. The shimmering sounds of "Notes From The Underground" and cinematic tones that make up "Mean" keep you on your toes while "Breathing" and "Lilly (Regrets)" are highlighted by the intricate and blissful guitar sounds that flow through them. At times the E.P. comes off like a soundtrack to a mini series, where each song would be featured in a specific episode. The songs all have their own unique personality but also mesh together to tell a cohesive story in the perfect way. Overall a very promising record that's colorful, hypnotic and warm.

Friday, November 23, 2018

Six Records CMM Wants You To Know

Another Heaven "IE" Single (

"IE", the first single from the upcoming "FOR EVER FOR EVER FOR EVER FOR EVER FOR EVER FOR EVER " EP by Sludgegaze band Another Heaven is nothing short of stellar. It's well crafted song structure, dynamic guitars and lush vocal delivery will have you swooning along in no time and make you feel like you just took a tip through outer space and visited an unknown planet. B-side "(Entry Point to Recursive Loop)" is led by it's powerful bass line and galloping drums that accompany the modulated guitars and vocals well. Quite a nice pair of tracks that are sure to delight fans of effects driven shoegaze rock n roll.

Cupidcome "This Is Kenna's Song" Single (

This song is simply epic. I don't know specifically what the song is about or what the bands mindset was when it was written or recorded but it certainly speaks to me and takes me to a place that I like in my head. It's got a really gritty/filmy type vibe to it all that draws you in and makes you think. Psychedelic folk with a dirge driven, haunting like twist. A true beauty.

FINE CULT "White Glasses" E.P. (

FINE CULT is the brainchild of Illinois native Luke Woodson. The projects latest E.P. "White Glasses" is a hypnotic mix of dark psychedelic melodies, ambient soundscapes and rich shoegaze nuances. It's really the perfect blend of mind bending music. The title track and "Leave It At Home" really set the mood for things while "Your Loops" adds elements of pulsating synths to this ever evolving mix of vibrant sound. Closing piece "She Bends" serves as an amazing ending to everything as it's dark, haunting presence moves like swaying trees just before an unexpected thunderstorm. Highly recommended.

Megahaare "Powsy" LP (

German rock n roll unit Megahaare blast through an eclectic collection of high energy yet quirky songs that come off like a mix between New York City No Wave, Devo and Ohio legends Boy in Love. Stand out pieces like "Sad Knightrider" and "Sunny Day In Antarctica" are both fun and frantic as the unpredictable vocal delivery of Marc Alongina compliments his jangling guitar sound in fine form. There's a deep underlying sense of relentless art that flows throughout this album that is sure to move you. It's that little touch of familiarity that counter acts all the chaos and colorfulness and molds everything together that makes it great.

No Hay Dolor "Laverdada" Single (

Madrid is often described as the "Surf Music Capital Of The World". Now that surf type sound is certainly present on No Hay Dolor's latest single "Laverdada" however there is so much more than just that going on here as the band put together swirling seas of ambient textures and beautiful tones that loom underneath waves of reverb drenched riffs and powerful vocals. At times this has a Sonic Youth/Yo La Tengo feel which I obviously love and there's also a very primal almost tribal attitude to it too that really puts everything over the top. Do yourself a favor and blast this at full volume.

Sea, The Sun S/T E.P. (

Loving this debut E.P. from London based post rock outfit Sea, The Sun. Opening track "Waves" starts with a section of bouncy, intricate and uplifting sounds before doing a total 180 into a sea of guttural darkness that eventually ends with a radiant swell of ambient bliss. "It Felt Like Drowning" combines a similar mood but also takes some drastic turns into more aggressive and angular territory while "Les Dents de la Mer" is a culmination of all of the bands sounds. The track ends with a sonic blast of electronic madness that's like an explosion of immense color. A fine debut from beginning to end. Can't wait to hear what they do next.