Sunday, October 10, 2004

Guilty Pleasures

I turned 40 this year, and over this and the last couple of years the music of "my era" has come of age for the remastered reissue treatment. Today's selections are all culled from some of the remasters I've picked up, and they're all oldies but goodies that you're either going to love or hate. Now, on with the crusty old dude selections...

First up is Billy Joel. I normally wouldn't call myself of fan - I haven't bought a new record of his at any time over the last 20 years. I did go through a phase in the late '70s though, and that's where Zanzibar comes in. From 1978's 52nd Street, it's a very Steely Dan like blend of jazz and rock. The tune actually includes a jazz breakdown in the middle of it which is pretty smokin'. I think that this era is the man at his creative peak, able to handle all kinds of styles and still craft catchy pop hits. The last album of his I bought was Glass Houses, so I picked up the remaster of that one too. Next up, The Stranger and then I'm done!

I finally got my hands on the remaster of Adam & The Ants' breakthrough album Kings Of The Wild Frontier. From the opening track, Dog Eat Dog, you know you're in for a fun ride. Gone are the art punk pretensions, in are the big tribal beats, hugely twangy, Morricone-esque guitars, and that unmistakable voice. Of course chart domination ensued. These Ants remasters are really sweet - lovely packaging, great sound and loads of bonus cuts.

I took Paul McCartney & Wings' Wingspan into work this week and was amazed at what a crowd pleaser it could be - lots of co-workers seemed to enjoy it, at least those close to my age! Silly Love Songs was a huge hit in 1976, and I remember hearing it on the radio a lot. Sure it's goofy, but it has a great bass line and horns, and I love it. I never actually bought a Wings record - my parents gave me Red Rose Speedway for Xmas one year - so I'm amazed a how well I know all the songs on this complation, words and all.

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