Tara has long been building her heavy metal guitar skills, but has only recently gone public, building a huge social media following and now releasing Evil Enough, an album featuring musicians who’ve played with Black Sabbath, Ozzy Osbourne, Yngwie Malmsteen, etc.
Shawn started as a ’60s folk singer, went to England to cavort with the greats of classic rock, and emerged in the ’70s with ten albums of eclectic, progressive music with shamanic lyrics delivered with a twang.
We discuss “Woman” from Second Contribution (1971), “A Christmas Song” from Faces (1972) and “Mr. President” from Furthermore (1974), then play two songs from his new album, Continuance: “C’mon Round” and “Bach to the Fusion.” Opening music: “I’m a Loner (I’m a Drifter)” from I’m a Loner (1964). For more, see shawnphillips.com.
Phil was a core member of Roxy Music through the ’70s and early ’80s, has released 10+ solo albums since 1975 and many collaborations—appearing on around 80 albums in total—with an experimental yet tasteful guitar that’s sometimes mistaken for a keyboard or something else.
We discuss “No Church in the Wild” from The Sound of Blue (2015), which is a cover of the song by Jay Z and Kanye West based around a sample from Phil’s song “K-Scope” from the album of that name (1970). We then talk about “Wish You Well” from 6:00pm (2004) and the title track from Diamond Head (1975). Finally we listen to “Magdalena” from Live in Japan (2017). Intro music: “Over You” by Roxy Music from Flesh & Blood (1980).
For more, visit manzanera.com.
Nick has released 22 albums as The Bevis Frond since 1986, alternating jangle-pop with psychedelia and power-guitar rock… pretty much anything ’60s-flavored.
We discuss “Longships” from Example 22 (2015), “Opthalmic Microdots” from White Numbers (2013), and “Coming Round” from London Stone (1992). We conclude by listening to “Portobello Man” from Valedictory Songs (2000). Intro: “He’d Be a Diamond” from New River Head (1991). Hear more at bevisfrond.bandcamp.com.
As bassist/co-frontman for XTC, he released around 14 albums between 1978–2000, and for the first time since, he has a new release, the Great Aspirations EP now under the name TC&I.
We discuss “Scatter Me” and “Kenny” from this 2017 release, plus “Say It” an 2002 XTC song, and conclude by listening to “Where Did the Ordinary People Go?” the final 2005 XTC single. Intro music: “Making Plans for Nigel” from Drums and Wires (1979). For more, see facebook.com/tcandimusic.
David J. Haskins gained fame with Bauhaus in the late ’70s/early ’80s, gained more fame with Love and Rockets, and has since 1983 released around ten albums plus several EPs and other collaborations.
We discuss “The Auteur (Redux / Reprise)” a 2018 single (featuring Rose McGowan and Emily Jane White), “Vaudeville Ghost Light” from Carpe Noctem (2016), credited to M.C. Nightshade and the Theatre Bizarre Orchestra, and “Eulogy for Jeff Buckley” from Not Long for This World (2011). End song: “The Day the David Bowie Died” from Vagabond Songs (2017). Opening song: “No New Tale to Tell” by Love and Rockets from Earth, Sun, Moon (1987). For more, see davidjonline.com.
Sarah has recorded five solo albums since 1997, starting with traditional folk songs, sometimes guitar instrumentals, and now focusing on originals that mix British and American folk in a style influenced by Joni Mitchell, among others. She has lately pared back her songwriting to ensure that every note counts.
We discuss the title track and “The Silence above Us” from If We Dig Any Deeper It Could Get Dangerous (2018) and “Hardwick’s Lofty Towers” from The Plum Tree and the Rose (2012). Closing song: “Yellowstone” from Walking into White (2015). Opening instrumental: “The Day of Wrath, That Day,” also from the new album. For more, see sarahmcquaid.com.
Aaron was born into show business, staring young in L.A. in the early ’00s with All Hours, then went solo, moved to New York, became an actor, and has now released his first album in seven years, Wry Observer.
We discuss the title track from that album plus “Brooklyn at Dawn” (the intro music is from that too: “The Last to Die in Battle”). Then we look back to “Box Office Stud” by All Hours (2004) and finish by listening to “Bright Lights” from the album Aaron David Gleason (2010). Learn more at aarondavidgleason.com.
Amy has recorded nine albums of emotionally stark but often artistically decorated original folk music, punctuated by cover tunes like the opening music here, Townes Van Zandt’s “Buckskin Stallion Blues,” which appeared in the film Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.
We discuss “Mouth to Mouth” from The Autopilot Knows You Best (2000), “The Nightjar’s Blues” from The Cimarron Banks (2010), and “Natural Arc” from Songs for Creeps (2006), which also contains our closer, “I’m A-Gone Down to the Greenfields.” Visit amyannelle.bandcamp.com.
http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/traffic.libsyn.com/partiallyexaminedlife/NEM_ep_069_2-1-18.mp3Podcast (nakedly-examined-music-podcast): Play in new window | Download (Duration: 36:51 — 33.9MB)On NEM#15, Craig introduced us to his songwriting style: How a hardcore aesthetic informs even his most syntho creations, and how whimsicality and beauty can coexist harmoniously. Craig has since then released the Adult Desire album, and returns to talk to us about the song “Safe Home/Fadeland” and about Continue Reading …
Billy now does press for many of his idols, but began as a drummer in music school and started Ant-Bee in the late ’80s, as a Zappa-esque improv live act and as a Beach Boys–psychedelic solo recording effort. He’s released four albums, increasingly featuring his clients.
We discuss two tracks from Electronic Church Muzik (2011): “Flutter-Bye, Butter-Flye” (feat. Michael Bruce) and “The Language of the Body” (feat. poetry by Gong’s Daevid Allen and layering on parts by Zappa alums). We then look back to two tracks from With My Favorite “Vegetables” & Other Bizarre Muzik (1994): “The Girl with the Stars in Her Hair” and a Beach Boys cover, “Do You Like Worms?” Opening/closing music: “Eating Chocolate Cake (In the Bath)” from Pure Electric Honey (1990). For more info, see ant-bee.com and glassonyonpr.com.
RHEMA as a six-piece band produced an album called Voyage of the Rock Aliens that accompanied their appearance in the film of that name. The band then broke up, but songwriters Marc and Jeffrey continued to work together on various projects, and have finally now produced a proper album as RHEMA called Shine, drawing on their ’80s roots but incorporating modern electronic music textures.
We discuss “Rebel Flame” and “The World Is So Small” and listen to “Life in Front of You” from that new album, and discuss one old song, “Combine Man,” specifically a 2009 Marc Jackson remix. Intro: “21st Century.” For more information, see rhemaband.com.
Arrica has released five albums and three EPs of floaty, poetic, California rock since 2006.
We discuss “Whole Lotta Lows” and “X-Ray Eyes” from Low as the Moon (2017) and “When the Clouds Hang This Low” from Let Alone Sea (2011). We conclude by listening to “On and On” by Dear County from Low Country (2016). Intro music: “Sail Away” from Antebellum (2010). For more, visit arricarose.com.
Jherek started off as bassist in the late ’90s for the Seattle art rock bands The Dead Science and Parenthetical Girls, and has released about five solo albums (and other things) since 2006, the last two being full-on orchestral works.
We discuss the title track from Cistern (2016), “The Nest” featuring Mirah from Composed (2012), and “Blackstar,” featuring Anna Calvi, from a David Bowie tribute with Amanda Palmer called Strung Out in Heaven (2016). We conclude by listening to “Eyes” feat. David Byrne, also from Composed. Opening/closing music: “Automatism” from Cistern. For more info, see jherekbischoff.com.
Richard garnered early fame as drummer for ’60s New Jersey garage band The Doughboys and has put out 11 albums, largely as a one-man band, since 1988.
We discuss the title tracks from Incognito (2017) and Cornerstone (1998) and “Agnostic’s Prayer” from Tiers and Other Stories (2011). End song: “And Then” from Incognito. Intro: “Falling Away” from Hey Man! (1990).
Learn more at richardxheyman.com.
Alejandro started as a punk guitarist for the The Nuns, moved to Austin in the ’80s and became a songwriter with True Believers. He has since put out 14+ solo albums of story-driven, lyrically intense, stylistically varied Texas rock.
We discuss “Beauty and the Buzz” from Burn Something Beautiful (2016), “Sally Was a Cop” from Big Station (2012), and “Pissed Off 2AM” from With These Hands (1996). End song: “Velvet Guitar” from A Man Under the Influence (2001). Opening: “Hard Road” from True Believers (1986). More at alejandroescovedo.com.
Frank has led punk band The Mr. T Experience in the Bay Area since 1985, and has also released three successful music-related books for teens since 2006.
We discuss “Down With the Universe” from King Dork Approximately (2016), “Big, Strange, Beautiful Hammer” from Yesterday Rules (2004), and “More Than Toast” from Our Bodies Our Selves (1993). We conclude by listening to “Even Hitler Had a Girlfriend,” a 2014 single by Dr. Frank & the Bye-Bye Blackbirds. Opening/closing music: “Danny Partridge” from Everybody’s Entitled to Their Own Opinion (1986). Learn more at frankportman.com.
Don has composed and played jazz since the ’50s, was a Frank Zappa sideman through his classic ’60s albums and beyond, and has since released 20+ albums, scored 20 films, and has performed with numerous artists including John Lennon, Lou Rawls, and Nat King Cole. He has also been called “the father of modern synthesis” for his work in electronic music.
We discuss “Winds of Change” (3rd movement, 2001), “Palmer Park” (1975), and “Analog Heaven #7” (1975). End song: “Piano Solo” from TriAngular Bent (2016). Opening/closing music: “King Kong” from Uncle Meat by the Mothers of Invention (1969).
Kaki is a guitar virtuoso who has recorded eight albums and three EPs of largely instrumental work since 2003.
We discuss “Close Your Eyes & You’ll Burst into Flame,” from Everybody Loves You (2003), “Can Anyone Who Has Heard This Music Really Be a Bad Person?” from Dreaming of Revenge (2008) (intro music: “Pull Me Out Alive” from that album), and “Trying to Speak II” (feat. Ethel), from The Neck Is a Bridge to the Body (2015). End song: “Cargo Cult” from Glow (2012).
For more info visit kakiking.com.
David has recorded seven albums since 2000. Usually one wants to avoid the term “Beatlesque,” but David is a Beatles freak who once recorded his performances all 209 Beatles songs over 209 days.
We discuss “Time to Go” from David Brookings and the Average Lookings (2016), “Dead Battery” from Chorus Verses the Bridge (2005), and the title track from Obsessed (2007). We conclude by listening to “If I Don’t Make It Back” from The Maze (2013). Opening music: “You’re Right, It Went So Wrong” from the current album.