Sunday, February 03, 2008

Catching up

I have been doing a lot of listening to music and watching DVDs lately and I haven't commented here about many of them so here is a quick summary of what's been going on.

Beatles – I'm near the end of the standard part of one of my trip-through-the-albums-in-order journeys. I just heard Abbey Road and Let It Be for the second time in my car which means that I will next turn to the two Past Masters CDs and then on to all the special ones like the Yellow Submarine Songtrack, Live at the BBC, the Anthologies, etc. so I still have a lot of listening to do. This trip has reminded me of how much I enjoy this music and of how much I'm ready for remasters – could they be announced today at the superbowl???

The Reminder by Feist – This CD appeared on many end of year best-of lists so I took a chance and ordered it and I'm really enjoying it. The combination of authentic, roots sounding songs and instrumentation with sometimes highly polished production gives the album a vibe that is different from what I'm used to. The best comparison I can make is Norah Jones' second album but that's not really fair to either of them. Leslie Feist's songwriting is unique and her vocals and very nice. Mostly though this is an album that feels authentic in a way that I really like.

A Place to Land by Little Big Town – I'm just getting into this CD but it is high on my playlist right now. Imagine the Eagles of their first four albums with a slightly more 21st century vibe and you get the sound of this band comprised of two men and two women all of whom sing. Sample the album opener "Fine Line" to see what I mean.

Classic Artists: Yes – This three hour documentary (four by the time you're done with the additional interview footage) on DVD is great for fans of the 70's supergroup that keeps coming back for the faithful to see again every once in a while. It follows the twists and turns of the personnel changes with interviews from the vast majority of key players while keeping it lively and interesting. Not much performance footage but I have concerts on DVD of theirs so I really wanted the overview and interviews. It's a fine addition to any Yes fan's collection.

Lost – I watched the season 3 DVD to get myself geared up for season four and it's great, of course. This is one of my all-time favorite shows. I hope the writers strike doesn't screw it up too badly. The first episode of the new season rocked.

Heroes – I'm still watching the first season on DVD. I like it a lot so far.

Upcoming Phil Keaggy concert – Phil's Master and Musician tour is coming to Calvin College next weekend. A friend from PA was trying to fly out to see it but he was unable to make it so I'll go with my kids. I'm pretty pumped about this concert, perhaps the first time Phil has toured with a band other than Glass Harp in over 15 years.

I've also been reading, mostly professional stuff, but I am partway into the Golden Compass and just can't get into it. Maybe I'll give it another shot before I give up completely.


Joyce said...

LOST! I love LOST. It's one of the only television shows for which I can't predict the ending (usually) - makes it fun to watch.

(Side-Note: my blog, due to some sort of coding error, had to be moved. It now resides at

Isorski said...

Hey Bob - Have you seen the Yes video that came out around the time of the crazy Union reunion tour? It covers the band all the way up to that tour and is pretty good - interviews with eveyone who was in the reunion but not guys like Patrick Moraz, Trevor Horn, etc. I can't remember the name, but it's Yesstories or something like that. On VHS. Didn't see it on Amazon just now so it might be out of print.

A lot has happened since then, obviously, so I am wondering if this is a better overview. It is for sure much longer. I might just get it regardless - I am a huge Yes fan.

Isorski said...

Ah, found it - it was called YesYears. An Amazon reviewer said this is a nice companion piece so I will get it. Thanks for the recommendation!

Bob K said...

Isorski - I do indeed have an old VHS of YesYears and it is also an excellent documentary of Yes. It has more performance footage of the band, it has Trevor Rabin in it (which Classic Artists doesn't have) and it has the rehearsal footage of the Re-Union tour. On the other hand, Classic Artists has Peter Banks and all new interviews with the Band - plus, this is something like 16 years later and, while Yes hasn't been real active in that time, it is nice to have it updated. So, in short, get them both! :-)