Vinyl Release

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Steve Sutherland  |  Nov 01, 2018
Steve Sutherland tells how the duo tweaked their covers, wrote some originals but finally fell out by the 1970s as he hears the 180g reissue of their debut LP

So many stories, where-oh-where to begin? Maybe we could start on the 14th of July 1973 at that fateful gig at Knott's Berry Farm in Buena Park, California, when Don's so hammered that he's butchering the songs and Phil smashes his guitar in frustration, tells the crowd he's tired of being an Everly Brother and says that they, in fact, died as a meaningful entity ten years before – thus revealing the fraught fabrication behind all those celestial harmonies. It was an acrimony so strong that it kept them full-on apart for the entire next decade.

Steve Sutherland  |  Nov 11, 2019
There's not a dud among all nine tracks here, declares Steve Sutherland as he listens to the recent 180g reissue of Jonathan Richman's proto-punk debut LP

According to that top old egghead Brain Eno, 'The first Velvet Underground album only sold 10,000 copies, but everyone who bought it formed a band'. One of those is a weird young man from a place called Natick, some 17 miles West of Boston, Massachusetts. The little guy's name is Jonathan Michael Richman and he was once so obsessed with The Velvet Underground that he quit school and skipped off to New York to seek them out.

Steve Sutherland  |  Apr 19, 2022
Sondheim and Bernstein's 1957 musical has been reborn as a new Hollywood blockbuster – and a 180g reissue of the original recording. Steve Sutherland reports

The twenty seventh of September 1957, the morning after the night before, and the reviews are in... 'The most savage, restless, electrifying dance patterns we've been exposed to in a dozen seasons... a profoundly moving show that is as ugly as the city jungles and also pathetic, tender and forgiving... flaring scores that capture the shrill beat of life in the streets... The astringent score has moments of tranquillity and rapture, and occasionally a touch of sardonic humour… This is a bold new different kind of musical…'

Steve Sutherland  |  Aug 22, 2019
This band of talented '60s musicians were one of those rare breeds – a British folk supergroup. Steve Sutherland revisits their hit LP from 1969, reissued on 180g vinyl

Way back in the mists of time, before every rapper and R&B star worth his, or her, ice degraded it all by cottoning on to the commercial boost of cramming all their releases with famous guests, there was this strange and rare phenomenon called The Supergroup.

Steve Sutherland  |  Sep 15, 2020
Their 1974 riposte to criticism, which Steve Sutherland finds a mixture of downright goodies with a sprinkling of duds is remastered on 180g vinyl from pure analogue

The Rolling Stones have just released their first original track for eight years. 'Living In A Ghost Town', started some time ago when the band could convene together in a swanky recording studio and hastily rounded off with isolated overdubs. It's getting a bit of a pasting from the online community who are having a lot of fun mocking Mick Jagger and Co for moaning about being stuck at home when they live in mansions with acres of land, hot tubs and snooker rooms, etc.

Steve Sutherland  |  Mar 26, 2021
As the Coventry group prepare their second LP things are already starting to fall apart... Steve Sutherland listens to the half-speed-remastered 40th anniversary reissue

Here they are, Britain's most successful and influential breakthrough band, revered by the critics, adored by the fans, unashamedly copied by start-up bands… But Jerry Dammers, the geezer in charge, wants to mess with the magic and do something quite worryingly different.

Steve Sutherland  |  Sep 03, 2021
Get your Vaccines here on 180g black vinyl (sorry, we couldn't resist), as Steve Sutherland sets out the background story to this UK indie/rock debut album

Remember Joe Lean & The Jing Jang Jong? Of course you don't. No reason why you should. They didn't amount to a hill of beans. To elucidate: they were one of those thousands of bands heaped on the steaming pile of what was rather cruelly described in the mid-'90s as Landfill Indie.

Steve Sutherland  |  Apr 17, 2019
The greatest English pop lyric writers of the 1960s? Steve Sutherland argues his case as he reassesses this mono LP from 1968, recently reissued on 180g vinyl

Afew decades ago I read an interview with Tom Waits where he was asked about the art of songwriting. Tom thought about it for a second, then declared that in fact he found it very easy, thanks to a nine-word magic formula. Those words were: 'Things will be better when we get to Chicago…'.

Steve Sutherland  |  Aug 13, 2021
This month's 180g album reissue takes Steve Sutherland back to the '70s when, after a Knebworth concert, he'd become a Buckley fan and was passing the message on

Who else had a halcyon summer? Mine was in 1974. I'd just left school and was waiting to go to Uni. A few mates clubbed together and bought an old banger and we were off – three months of hi-jinx down to Cornwall and back bookended by a couple of legendary gigs: The Grateful Dead at Alexandra Palace in September; and the first Knebworth Festival, the Bucolic Frolic, in July. For a bunch of lads raised in Wilts in total awe of West Coast Rock, these were not mere gigs, they were pilgrimages, the Knebworth lineup akin to finding the holy grail.

Steve Sutherland  |  Oct 11, 2019
Stax meets rocksteady in this rousing reggae set, which has been described as one of the most uplifting LPs ever. Steve Sutherland listens to the recent 180g reissue

Sometimes things go wrong. Like when I was flown to San Francisco to interview Australian psychedelic popsters The Church and they wouldn't talk to me, over a grudge which to this day remains a mystery to me. Then there was the time I interviewed the brilliant and now sadly deceased Prince Far I and such was the depth of his gutteral growl and the deep slur of his diction that, on playing back the tape recording, neither myself nor anyone else I cared to play it to could decipher a single word he uttered...

Steve Sutherland  |  Nov 12, 2021
Buy this reissue for the title track, says Steve Sutherland, but who was John Barleycorn? The unsparing details will be no surprise to all who have seen The Wicker Man…

Police Sergeant Neil Howie steps inside the bakery. He has flown here, to Summerisle, a small, remote Hebridean island, on a one-man seaplane to investigate the whereabouts of Rowan Morrison, a young schoolgirl who's reported missing. He's been to the school, the church, the library, the pub, the graveyard, even to the Laird of the island's manse, but every local he questions is infuriatingly vague, reluctant to divulge any helpful information.

Steve Sutherland  |  Oct 02, 2019
Wearing his film critic's hat, Steve Sutherland recalls seeing Oliver Stone's movie in the early 1990s and reviews the soundtrack album that's now on 180g vinyl

She hits me from behind so I don't see it coming. I go down and she piles on top of me. People scatter. A couple of glasses smash, dislodged from a nearby table in the melee. She's pummelling me now, and wrestling. And she's laughing. So am I. I think she must be drunk – I know I am…

Steve Sutherland  |  Jul 05, 2021
Steve Sutherland listens to the 1980 live album by the American rock singer/songwriter, now in a deluxe vinyl set with extras, and recalls some of its cadaverous lyrics

Enjoy every sandwich.' It was certainly weird as pay-off lines go, but somehow perfect. Famous last words, or advice from the knowingly soon-to-be deceased, are usually offered up with at least a modicum of deep philosophical profundity – sometimes religious, sometimes self-pitying, sometimes peaceful and sometimes panicked, but invariably they are long premeditated and polished for posterity.

Steve Sutherland  |  Dec 01, 2018
One-take, on-the-money thrills... Steve Sutherland listens to the recent 180g vinyl reissue of a 12-track LP that saw a 'steely figure' of a singer become a superstar

In three weeks short of two years' time, just along the hall from here, the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr, who is in town to support the Black Sanitary Public Works employees, who are striking over higher wages and greater equality with their white co-workers, will step out onto the balcony of Room 306 and be gunned down dead by an assassin later identified as James Earl Ray.

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