Friday, March 25, 2011

Taking off for a while

Well work is getting in the way again and I will be gone for a week or so.  If you have any problems, requests or concerns, you can contact me at

Curty Ray

Thursday, March 24, 2011

The Lolas - Something You Oughta Know - 2004

Something You Oughta Know doesn't stray far from the immaculate bubblegum/
jangle pop assault of the Lolas' previous releases. The Alabama combo are high-scoring students of the genre, and each heady blend of tight Byrds-like harmonies and Cheap Trick swagger is instantly catchy and deliciously transparent -- in a good way. They've got enough Gary Glitter/ELO rave-ups ("Little Deedra"), Nuggets-infused fist-pumpers ("Jungle Girl"), and sugary ballads ("Light Up Every Doorway") to satisfy the rottenest of sweet tooths, and despite the ultracompressed, a little too bright and radio-ready -- for 1977 that is -- production, they all work. Sure, it's just retro power pop and it's all been done before, but if hearing it filtered through the ears and amps of a band whose heaviest lyric is "since you've been gone, my guitar won't stay in tune" doesn't put a smile on your face, then you're just plain jaded. -AMG



Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Kurt Baker NEW SINGLE "Don't Steal My Heart Away" Promo Vid

Which is OUT NOW and available for .99 cents on the following sites!
“Don’t Steal My Heart Away” AVAILABLE NOW on iTunes

“Don’t Steal My Heart Away” AVAILABLE NOW on

“Don’t Steal My Heart Away” AVAILABLE NOW on

Also we’ve got a bunch of cool shows coming up!
April 16th: Just announced will be an In-store acoustic performance at the South Portland Newbury Comics store. It’s record store day! I love records, you love records! Let’s all celebrate the act of record buying! Friends like Grand Hotel and Foam Castles will also be playing!
April 28th: We’ll be rocking Empire Dine & Dance in Portland, ME w/ Steiner Street and more!
April 29th/April 30th : TBA MA/RI/NYC DATES! More info TBA

And a little bonus:
Can't Have Her Back" LIVE @ Port City Music Hall by Kurt Baker and the Kurt Baker Band feat. Geoff Useless, Craig Sala, Josh Malia, Kris "Fingers" Rodgers & Miek Rodrigue. 2/22/11 Portland, Me. Photos by Erika Johnson Photography

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

The Kooks - Konk - 2008

The Kooks' debut album, Inside In/Inside Out, was a sleeper success story, going on to sell a whopping two million copies. It was a fabulous set, but their follow-up, Konk, wipes the floor with it. The title takes its name from Ray Davies' studio, where the quartet recorded most of the set. This direct connection to Britain's past obviously inspired the band to new heights, because the Kooks and this album are positively electrifying. Across a dozen songs (plus a hidden track), the quartet explores pop and rock in all their glory, with every number set apart from its neighbor in sound and feel. The Kooks wanted each song to be "its own little world," and they've succeeded brilliantly. Singer and rhythm guitarist Luke Pritchard is on fire throughout, a bundle of barely contained emotional energy. Vocally he's an amorphous mass of influences -- Phil Lynott, Steve Marriott, Brett Anderson, David Bowie, even Van Morrison among them -- but bar the occasional inflection, he rarely channels any of them directly, capturing instead their spirit and soul. Musically, his guitar adds a decided bounce to everything he plays, even on the most downbeat numbers. His performances are magnificent, but even so, Konk belongs to lead guitarist Hugh Harris, who swaggers like an epic hero right across this set. He struts out like Achilles onto the plains of Troy on the infectious '60s pop/rocking album-opener, "See the Sun." His leads are absolutely incendiary on "Do You Wanna" while adding subtle shades of color to the crash-and-bash "Always Where I Need to Be," and they're positively joyous on the bright, bouncy Beatlesque "Mr. Maker" and utterly irrepressible on the pop/rock perfection of "Down to the Market." Harris' show-stopper, though, is "Shine On," a midtempo '60s-tinged number that pushes the band into new territory, and Pritchard to new heights as well. The guitarist's work on the power ballad "Sway" is equally superb, and showcases his most emotive work. The members of the band's rhythm section are no slackers either -- drummer Paul Garred brings to mind a more disciplined Keith Moon, while bassist Max Rafferty is the Kooks' linchpin with his wonderfully understated work. The album sounds phenomenal, with producer Tony Hoffer giving the entire set a warm glow that heightens the band's retro elements. That glow turns luminous on "One Last Time," an acoustic-styled ballad with all the majesty of Green Day's "Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)," and burns just as brightly on the sway-along "Stormy Weather." Everything about this album shouts masterpiece, a set that will thrill listeners for years, nay decades, to come. -AMG



Monday, March 21, 2011

The Bad Detectives - Get Hip - Let Rip - 2006

The Bad Detectives are a bunch of unlikely musical heroes from the West Country in Great Britain. They write and perform their own material with diverse influences ranging from 60's Brit-pop and kitch 50's novelty tunes. The result is an eclectic collage of catchy songs about old B-movies, rather uncool old cars and Elvis dying on the toilet! They have shared the stage with such British music luminaries as The Pirates and Wilko Johnson and always go down a storm. -CD Baby

Sunday, March 20, 2011

New single "Daybreak" from City Reign released

The song writing pair Chris Bull (Vocals/Guitar) and Michael Grice (Guitar) met four years ago at a Ryan Adams concert, having both recently moved north from London. Having spent years writing and playing in bands going nowhere, the two met Michael Glaze (Bass) and Sam Jones (Drums) to complete the new line up. The band took the name from the Adams song, ‘City Rain, City Streets’.

'Daybreak’ has long been a fan favourite, its original recording being the title track of the band’s early demo, The Daybreak EP recorded with Grammy nominated producer Dan Parry. The band have since chopped down the song’s lengthy outro, leaving the punchy pop classic on the current record.

This is the second single from City Reign and can downloaded  from:
or to purchase physical CDs over at
Daybreak by cityreign

Also the b-side is a live session recording of the song "The Line"

Frosting releases new single Katrina Wells

A refreshing take on rock music in todays over saturated world of cookie cutter bands, fledgling indie projects and one trick ponies, FROSTING delivers a mesmerizing blend of styles, rooted in the rock genre. From hook-laden pop songs to moody, introspective melodies to straight up guitar driven anthems, these "ingredients" of FROSTING blend to create a unique rock and roll sound.

Frosting - Katrina Wells

to hear more from Frosting's "Fresh Frosting" go to:

Friday, March 18, 2011

The Freddy Jones Band - Waiting for the Night - 1993

The Freddy Jones Band's debut album, Waiting for the Night, infuses a bluesy, jam-band sound with Southern rock tendencies. "Take the Time" opens the record with a rolling acoustic guitar lick suitable for a summer drive with the top down. "The Puppet" exemplifies the band at its best, with a driving snappy drum beat, airy harmonies, and a playful electric guitar that eventually bubbles to the surface in the form of a scorching solo. The groovy folk compositions evoke a sense of euphoria and freedom that implores the listener to get lost in the music. The resplendent beauty of "In a Daydream" dreamily matches Marty Lloyd's pacifying vocals with Rob Bonaccorsi's magical guitar work. In between the customary roots rock tracks, the band manages to experiment with other genres like the guitar-laden blues song "The Other Side" and the quirky folk-country ditty "Dixie Dynamite." The Freddy Jones Band's sound is instantly identifiable, and easily accessible, proving that they are definitely onto something special. -AMG



Thursday, March 17, 2011

NEW! "Don't Steal My Heart Away" Single OUT NOW!

Kurt Baker's new track is called "Don't Steal My Heart Away" and it picks up just were the Leftovers left off! Recorded by the amazing Jon Wyman , the track features some amazing performances by Geoff Useless, Craig Sala, Josh Malia, Kris "Fingers" Rodgers and a killer guitar solo from Miek Rodrigue.-Kurt Baker

Buy on Itunes for .99 Cents

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Buster - Buster - 1977

.. In May 1976, Buster released their debut single "Sunday" in England. The band were marketed as the new 'teeny bop' sensations and the record was an immediate success with their young fans although, as rock musicians, the boys felt uncomfortable with their 'teeny' image. Sunday raced into the UK charts reaching No46. Radio 1, refused to play the single due to the fact that they were getting a little tired of "Teeny" bands and a new sound was on its way in...PUNK! RVC (present BMG) which is the Japanese division of RCA released "Sunday" in Japan in January 1977. The single was an immediate top ten hit and the boys turned their attentions to the Japanese markets. Five further singles followed and all were top twenty hits. Christmas 1977 saw the band touring Japan, Philippines, Australia & Germany. In Japan 'Buster-mania' had taken a firm grip on the young Japanese public. -Buster



Monday, March 14, 2011

David Mead - Mine and Yours - 2001

With his sophomore release, the Adam Schlesinger (Fountains of Wayne) produced Mine and Yours, David Mead proves that his stellar 1999 debut, The Luxury of Time, was no fluke. And while there's nothing here as immediately irresistible as, for instance "World of a King" from its predecessor, a couple of listens reveals the same mix of sophisticated, intelligent songcraft and pure pop delight. Mead is the consummate songwriter, much in the tradition of John Lennon and Paul McCartney or Paul Simon, creating timeless, memorable melodies that are fresh and inventive, while still ringing with a certain, inviting familiarity. Nearly every piece is meticulously put together, from the rich, textured arrangements to Mead's thoughtful lyrics: intricate, engaging tunes and warm, captivating tenor. Schlesinger's production follows the same basic idea used on The Luxury of Time, but with even more of an emphasis on the classic pop elements in Mead's songs. Mine and Yours, with cuts such as the dreamy melancholy of "Comfort," the buoyant '60s pop of "Girl on the Roof," and the infectious, rocking title track, shows Mead to be one of the best pop songwriter/performers to come along in quite a while. -AMG



Sunday, March 13, 2011

the commander / When I Lay My Burden Down album release

the commander is the new musical guise of Peder Claesson from Sweden.

Discerning music lovers will remember Claesson as the drummer and chief songwriting force behind The Motorhomes, architects of two of the finest albums to usher in the 21st century, before imploding in the usual mess of record label politics and directional uncertainties. Like any self-respecting musical survivor, Claesson re-focused on his craft and before long found himself behind the drumkit of Stockholm indie-rockers Friska Viljor. As it happens this turned out to be the perfect place from which to replenish his innocence, and with a new unblinkered clarity he found himself gathering together the various home and studio recordings that would fit together to create When I Lay My Burden Down. Working mostly alone in the studio, multi-instrumentalist Claesson achieved the intangible quality of layering sounds that truly evoke the spirit of a band playing live together in the studio.

Opening cut ”Dansmelodi” emerges in a swirling mass of cellos and piano and gives way to ”Gamla Stan”, a song about the pain of leaving a place, with a stunningly anthemic yet wordless chorus. First single ”Never Mind The Haters” builds around an irresistible guitar hook that recalls Claesson’s best writing for The Motorhomes, while the album’s title track steals its chorus refrain from the title of George Harrison’s masterpiece 1970 triple album before descending into a beautiful extended instrumental section. “I’ve got nothing but your tears in case of fire” Claesson sings on the closing track ”In Case Of Fire”, just one of many instances where his bold musical brush strokes dovetail beautifully with a lyrical vulnerability that bears repeated spins.

With When I Lay My Burden Down, Claesson re-asserts his position as a master craftsman of elegant, timeless songs.

The album will be available worldwide on digital music stores such as iTunes and Amazon.

Release date: 28 March 2011

Versions: CD and Download.

Pre-ordering of the CD: starting on March 14 at

Producer: Peder Claesson
Record company: Pristine Music Stockholm

Contact/Press/Booking: Johan Bergqvist / / +46(0)704-017218

Friday, March 11, 2011

Carus Thompson upcoming CD release and tour

The CARAVAN ALBUM Launch Tour hits the UK this week. Carus & his band will be in London this FRI 11th at THE HALF MOON in Putney. Tix from They’ll also play in Pymouth (Thur), Macclesfield (Sat) and at THE JAZZ BAR in EDINBURGH this Sunday 13th.

There are also new shows added for PARIS on Tue 15th March and Carus’ first headline show in Vienna on 22nd March. Check the tour dates for other shows through Austria, Czech Republic, France, Germany & Switzerland.

Very pleased to announce the Australian leg of The Caravan Album Launch Tour. In his first full band tour of OZ in over three years Carus will play ten shows nationally with his new look Australian band – which features ‘true believer’ Jason McGann on drums and Ben Franz from The Waifs on bass. Yanto Shortis, who also co-wrote the album title track with open all shows and play electric guitar in the band. The tour kicks off in Brisbane on the 6th April at The Zoo. Tix onsale now!

6.04 – The Zoo, Brisbane / 8.04 – Brass Monkey, Cronulla / 9.04 – Great Northern, Newcastle / 10.04- Vanguard, Sydney / 15.04- Pelly Bar (Pier Live), Frankston / 16.04 – The Corner Hotel, Melbourne / 24.04 – Republic Bar, Hobart / 27.04 – Grace Emily Hotel, Adelaide / 6.04 – The Settlers Tavern, Margaret River / 7.04 – The Fly By Night Club, Fremantle


The first single from CARAVAN – the rocking “You Can’t Find Me” has gone to Australian radio last week, fingers crossed! The Album will be officially in OZ stores & on iTUNES through MGM Distribution from the 1st April, however a few pre-release copies are avialabel through Music Plug. They are available for shipping right now from

Carus Thompson - 'You Can't Find Me'

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Will Kimbrough - This - 2000

This opens with the majestic, Matthew Sweet-circa-100% Fun "Closer to the Ground." But the album's tone changes throughout, making for a varied, eclectic ride. The airy "Chimayo" comes with shadings of Burt Bacharach, breezy harmonies, and muted trumpets. The sad and slow "Down in My Mind" is a cloistered bit of countrified sentiment, all wrapped up in sparse, bluesy guitar licks. And "Diamond in a Garbage Can" -- with lines like "she's the rotten apple of her daddy's eye," "leaning up against the pawnshop door/I could see she wasn't an ordinary whore," and "she's too sad to be so young" -- is a mid-tempo ramble in the vein of the progressive roots music of the mid-'70s. "Goodnight Moon" ends the set. It's a lullaby-like ode to leaving home with lilting tuba, euphonium, and alto sax by David Jacques. Will Kimbrough's guitar work -- which can also be heard on albums by Kim Richey, Matthew Ryan, Josh Rouse, Amy Rigby, and Jess Klein -- is seamless, and his vocals, which lie somewhere between those of Neil Finn and Gram Parsons, are sweet and warm. -AMG



Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Electric & Eclectic Rarities: Volume 1 (free with any order over $30)

Popboomerang Records are proud of our present you with this album “Electric & Eclectic rarities", a collection of hard to find or previously unavailable tunes from our roster of Popboomerang bands. Melodic guitar pop is a medium rarely well done but Popboomerang have cooked up a storm here, presenting a smorgasbord of b-sides,live tracks, covers & demos.

Nothing on this disc is half baked or underdone although some songs are served up raw or at perhaps medium rare!

Enjoy this hot pop of pop nuggets & head to for more information on all the artists.

Tommy Womack - Circus Town - 2002

In an era where the Regular Guy has either been ferreted out of rock & roll or turned so earnest as to be practically unrecognizable, it's good to have someone like Tommy Womack around. Womack (who previously worked with the bands Government Cheese and the Bis-Quits) writes rock & roll songs about everyday stuff -- falling in love, trying to stay in love, life's ups and downs of all shapes and sizes -- with good humor, a strong dose of common sense, and the smarts to understand when this stuff is funny and when it isn't. Womack also knows when and where to use the right three chords, and his third solo album, Circus Town, faces rough-and-ready roots rock up against country-leaning midtempo ballads, and comes up with a set of 11 winners. "Fake It 'Til You Make It" is a funny song about a job gone wrong, "You Could Be at the Beach Right Now, Little Girl" is the sad and evocative tale of a college flunk-out, "We Can't Do This Anymore" is a sweet but potent cheatin' song, teenage romance gone wrong rears its head in "Nancy Dunn" and "Sleeping with Cecelia," carnies wait out the off season on the title cut, and Womack gives his all-time favorite band a long and richly detailed shout-out on "The Replacements." The presence of the latter song begs comparisons to Paul Westerberg, and while one might argue that these days the former leader of the 'Mats writes more from his head than his heart, Womack shows it's possible to use both at the same time, and in Womack's hands the results are winning. (It certainly doesn't hurt that he has some top-shelf help in the studio, including Will Rigby, Will Kimbrough, and Bill Lloyd.) Funny when he wants to be, heartfelt when he needs to be, and playing like he means it in both high and low gears, Tommy Womack proves that he may be a regular guy, but he's no ordinary Joe, on Circus Town. Points added for the hidden track, which finds Tommy's entrepreneurial instincts dovetailing with his annoyance over drug testing in the workplace. -AMG



Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The Insomniacs - Out Of It! - 1997

New Jersey's mod power pop trio the Insomniacs formed in English- town in 1989 when their previous incarnation, the Tea Club, fizzled out after a year of rehearsals and infrequent gigs. By 1991, the group, made up of brothers David Wojciechowski (bass) and Robert Wojciechowski (guitar) and drummer Michael Sinocchi, released their debut 7", My Favorite Story, on Umbrella Records. The Time Ticks By and Going Out of My Mind singles followed, and in 1994, the band put out its self-titled EP on Estrus, known among fans as "the ghoul record." The next two years brought the Sylvia Gray and Already Down 7" records. The band's first album was delayed by the infamous Estrus warehouse fire, but in 1997, the Insomniacs finally debuted their first full-length of catchy munster rock, Out of It. The groovy, shag carpets and mood rings follow-up, Get Something Going!, arrived on the scene in 2000, and the similarly fabuloso Switched On! appeared in finer record shops in 2004. -AMG



Monday, March 7, 2011

Michael Carpenter - Kings Road - 2003

After four albums in which he tackled either most or all of the instruments himself, Australian pop prodigy Michael Carpenter has finally jumped into the deep end and formed a band, and miraculously he's actually been able to improve his work in the process. The synergy of having other musicians to bounce ideas off of in the studio has allowed Carpenter to better focus his energies on the important stuff (truth to tell, he's still saving the flashy bits for himself), and Kings Rd. Works, named for his new backing band, fairly crackles with pure pop energy. Carpenter is still saving the songwriting duties for himself, of course, and this is where Kings Rd. Works shines brightest. In his liner notes, Carpenter describes this set as an effort to move past his influences, wanting "the records to sound like me," and while this stuff is as smart and tuneful as anything he's ever done, there are fewer aural name-checks of his obvious favorites (Beatles, Byrds, Beach Boys) and a lot more straight-ahead guitar-centric pop/rock. And Carpenter is as strong a lyricist as he is a tunesmith and producer, which is no small accomplishment, and this album is full of wit and high spirits as well as a maturity and hard-won wisdom on what truly matters in love and life that one doesn't often see in a contemporary pop album. Simply put, Kings Rd. Works is a great record from a criminally underappreciated artist, and if you've been wondering why no one makes the kind of album that can tug at your heart as you sing along these days, well, perhaps you haven't been looking at Michael Carpenter. -AMG



Sunday, March 6, 2011

Got this this week

Baby Woodrose is now on Bandcamp Here you can listen to songs from all the Baby Woodrose albums as well as Lorenzo Woodrose sideprojects like Dragontears and Spids Nøgenhat. Also, the three very rare Pandemonica albums and the 12” are now available for download for the first time on the bandcamp site. Pandemonica was a Lorenzo Woodrose solo project which he recorded from 1993 to 1996. Equally as interesting is the three Baby Woodrose download-only albums called Unreleased Rarities 1, 2 and 3. They include alternative mixes, outtakes, demos + rare stuff by Dragontears, Spids Nøgenhat and On Trial. Finally, therë's also the Unreleased Realities download-only album which ended up as the soundtrack to the experimental movie Strange Artifacts of the Celebral Cortex. Bandcamp allows you to listen to the full songs before you decide if you wanna download and the word on the street is that bandcamp will become a serious contender to Myspace - who seem to be dying because of their own incompetence.

Friday, March 4, 2011

The Semantics - Powerbill - 1993

Cult albums are often a bit of a double-pronged fork: they're often "cult" because of elitist music fans or because the music is just so good that even if it's unreleased -- or only released in, say, Japan -- it manages to strike a chord with just the right audience. Powerbill, the 1993 debut (and only album from) Nashville popsters the Semantics, falls squarely into the latter category. The talent that existed in this band is undeniable; they were fronted by future solo artists Will Owsley and Millard Powers; featured Ringo Starr's son, Zak Starkey, on drums; and counted Ben Folds as an early member. That's part of the reason why this is 35 minutes of some of the most perfect power pop of the '90s. Right out of the gate, the opening duo of "Sticks and Stones" and "Future for You" leap off the speakers and crackle with more energy and "whoa-ohs" than should be allowed, and the pace barely slows throughout. Sonically, the connections to both the aforementioned Ben Folds and the first solo Owsley album are especially undeniable. Despite its merits, Powerbill is not exactly groundbreaking music, but that's not what power pop is about anyway: it is about well-crafted, catchy songs, and based on those criteria, Powerbill is an unquestionable success. But even if Powerbill is an excellent bite-sized chunk of radio-ready guitar pop, Geffen apparently didn't think so when they rejected it in 1993. At a time when grunge ruled the airwaves, the Semantics were probably too pop for alternative and too rock for pop radio, and Geffen felt they were unmarketable. At the last minute, the album's release was scrapped, effectively ending the band's career. Powerbill only saw the light of day three years later -- in Japan -- where it was a moderate commercial success. -AMG



Thursday, March 3, 2011

Los Immediatos - Second Chance - 2008

Toledo (Spain) based 4-piece is back with their 2nd lomgplayer, now on another italian label, Teen Sound (the 1st one was on For Monsters)!! 11 tracks in best Sixties style, super authentic & well played. Imagine a mix of spanish beat, US Nuggets style sounds & some mod revival, and out comes the fab sound of LOS IMMEDIATOS!!! Recorded at Jorge Explosion's insane Circoperrotti studio with the help of the master himself Mike Mariconda this is a great sounding journey thru Beat & YeYe history, incl. a superb version of THE GANTS' "I wonder". Soundflat



Wednesday, March 2, 2011

David Myhr “Got you where he wanted” out now!

David Myhr (formerly of The Merrymakers) gives us his new single "Got You Where He Wanted" from his new album Soundshine due out later this year. How cool is that?

More information can be found on David's official website -

Tommy Tutone - National Emotion - 1983

Tommy Tutone were an early-'80s power pop band led by vocalist Tommy Heath and guitarist Jim Keller. The group's first single, 1980's "Angel Say No," scraped the bottom of the American Top 40, yet it was 1981's "867-5309/Jenny" that sent the group to the top of the charts. Peaking in early 1982, the single hit number four and went gold. Tommy Tutone was never able to duplicate that success and the band broke up after the release of their third album, 1983's National Emotion. -AMG



Tuesday, March 1, 2011

The Giant Robots - Too Young To Know Better. Too Hard To Care! - 2006

The Giant Robots are a Rock’n’Roll band and are ready to conquer the World. Born in February 1996 (or was it in 1966 ?), the Giant Robots have already done many gigs in their hometown Lausanne, all around Switzerland, Italy and Germany and they’ve released several records. -The Giant Robots


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