Unexpected car repair expenses curtailed my record-buying this month. Spending money on my car pisses me off. Spending money on records makes me happy. It's as simple as that.
From the dollar bins (a few were actually 50 cents):
Ferrante and Teicher, Blast Off! (ABC-Paramount, original stereo pressing). The piano duo of F&T were one of the most popular easy listening acts during the 60s and early 70s. For a time, they released 4 or 5 albums per year. Before they became popular, these Julliard-trained pianists were doing some experimental shit, like putting objects in the piano strings and processing the piano through electronic devices. John Cage was also doing such crazy things. The difference was John Cage did it for Art while F&T were just goofing around.
Kansas, Point of Know Return (Columbia/Don Kirshner). I used to have a visceral reaction listening to Kansas. I don't mean that in a good way. But I had a totally different reaction recently hearing the title song in a State Farm commercial (with the Asian dude air drumming inside his car), sorta like, "Damn, that sounds good!"
Duffy, Rockferry (Mercury/Rough Trade). Duffy, Spawn of Dusty, you have created the best retro soul album this side of Raphael Saadiq. I have no idea what this was doing in the dollar bin.
The Byrds, The Byrds (Asylum, German pressing). Another surprise find in the dollar bin.
Pink Floyd, The Dark Side of the Moon (Harvest). Sometimes I snap up classic records for a dollar or less even when I already have a copy, because you never know if it's a better pressing. If not, I can always sell it for the same or a little more money.
Neil Young, Zuma (Reprise, original pressing). See above.
Rolling Stones, Hot Rocks (London, 2 LPs). See above.
And the rest:
The United States of America, The United States of America (Columbia, 2-eye label, original stereo pressing, $2). A psychedelic album without guitar. Instead, it features a lot of electronic and band instruments. It was made in 1968, about 40 years ahead of its time. As far as I know, its the only album released by USA.
The Temptations, With A Lot O' Soul (Motown, $2). It leads off with the epic "I'm Losing You" and never lets up. It even makes house cleaning fun.
Wilco, A.M. (Nonesuch, reissue on 180-gm vinyl, includes CD of album, new, $18). The first side is as good as any side of a Wilco album. With the larger format LP cover, you notice the radio featured on the cover is actually an F.M. radio. What kind of bullshit is that, Tweedy?
The Innocence Mission, Befriended (Agenda Records, new, $8). The band is true to its name. Is there a place in the world for simple, sweet, lilting music? I say make room for it. It'll do us all good.
Camera Obscura, "The Sweetest Thing"/b-side: "Tougher Than the Rest" (4AD, 7" single, UK pressing, new, $6). This is the second single from CO's new album. The a-side is great, but I'm mainly interested in the non-album b-side, a cover of a great Springsteen song from his most under-rated album. Here's a video of the song featuring the daughter of Tex and Edna Boil on keyboard:
The Jam, Sound Affects (Polydor, UK pressing, includes promo 7" single "Start!"/"Going Underground", $20). This is one of those albums I feel (almost irrationally) I must own. It includes what I consider a perfect pop song "That's Entertainment".
Yo La Tengo, Popular Songs (Matador, 2-LP 180-gm vinyl, includes mp3 download of album, $24). Someday I'll write a post comparing YLT with Sonic Youth and explain why you should really be listening to YLT instead of SY.
Sonny Rollins and Coleman Hawkins, Sonny Meets Hawk! (RCA/Classic Records reissue on 200-gm vinyl, $16). My love of Sonny grows the more I listen to him.
Stan Getz and Joao Gilberto, Getz/Gilberto (Verve/Polydor, stereo pressing, $2). This is a stereo copy to go along with my mono copy. I'm going through a strange bossa nova phase. I'm not sure if I like the music, but feel compelled to listen to it. Has that ever happened to you? Tell me I'm not alone.
Mahler, Symphony No. 3, Solti, London S.O. (Decca/Speakers Corner reissue on 180-gm vinyl, 2-LP German pressing, $25). Care for some heavy-duty weltschmerz anyone? Now I'm thinking, perhaps bossa nova is a self-prescribed antidote for Mahleria.
Mahler, Symphony, No. 8, Solti, Chicago, S.O. (London/King Super Analogue reissue, 2-LP Japanese pressing, still sealed, $20). I'll be picking up some more bossa nova records on my next trip to Amoeba.
Ravel, Piano Music, Record One, Vlado Perlemuter (Nimbus, UK pressing, $2). I bought this because I wanted to listen to "Gaspard de la nuit" for Halloween. I knew nothing of the pianist, who turns out to have actually studied with Ravel, was blind in one eye, and narrowly escaped the holocaust. Every record has a story.