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 2,077 good words for Songs From Lonely Avenue

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Andi

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PostSubject: 2,077 good words for Songs From Lonely Avenue   Fri Oct 30, 2009 8:47 am

The sophistication and expertise on display in the writing, arranging and performance of "Songs From Lonely Avenue" makes it arguably the most orchestral and highest quality release of Brian Setzer's career, perhaps only in competition with "Wolfgang's Big Night Out." Lonely Avenue takes the lead, however, in that every song is original. Given its uniqueness - lacking the chopped tops and peroxide blondes that Setzer is known for - like WBNO, "Lonely Avenue" may not be a fan favorite. But I hope the hardcore greasers will give it a listen with a wide open mind: this is excellent, excellent music. The total disregard for radio-friendly runtimes, with six of the 13 songs running more than four minutes in length (and three of those over FIVE minutes!), makes it seem as if Setzer is saying, "this music is so damn good that we're gonna take our time with it, we don't care if it ever touches the radio dial, and you're still gonna enjoy every second of it." (Even WBNO had shorter runtimes, and you wouldn't expect that of classical tunes!)

The film-noir movie feel of "Songs From Lonely Avenue" has been discussed and promoted at length, but when I listen to it all the way through, I hear New York's Broadway and London's West End as much as I hear the cinema. These are dark, expressive show tunes from a musical along the lines of "Chicago." There may be little overlap between Broadway and the Drag Strip, but from project to project Setzer manages to step between the two worlds with ease and grace.

The only thing I miss on "Songs From Lonely Avenue," that I was hoping for when learning of the theme of the record, was a bold, original, big band crime-scene instrumental akin to "Peter Gunn," "Mission Impossible" or the absolutely perfect "Man With The Golden Arm." Perhaps "Guitarslinger" with Joe Strummer rendered it unnecessary, but such a tune would've fit beautifully in this collection of stories. Regardless, the 13 pieces we're given are gifts.

Trouble Train - This song gives us what we expect and crave from Brian Setzer. It's the most Setzer-esque tune on the record, with the driving tempo, slapping bass, inimitable rockabilly guitar and warning vocals to hook you in for the rest of the adventure. Between the mob and the women, our hero is in for some definite trouble ahead!

Dead Man Incorporated - Truly setting the scene for the story and the sound of the rest of the album, Dead Man Inc. sees our hero on the lam, gangsters hot on his tail, simply for being in the wrong place at the wrong time. The foreboding, chugging rhythm is irresistible, and even without the lyrics to guide you, the music is a plot in and of itself. The interplay between the guitar and bass - are those gunshots being exchanged? Then the vibes and guitar provide the creeping, sparse atmosphere as the hero and the bad guy play a game of cat and mouse, eyes wide, looking over their shoulders, sneaking around corners - 'til suddenly the tension is shattered by a hail of guitar bullets, and the chase is on once again. The despairing mob flick horns viscerally punctuate the guns popping and bodies dropping. This song, more than any other on the record, seems to be the setpiece of the Lonely Avenue story.

Kiss Me Deadly - Ah, the long, languid tale of a hot-burning but short-lived, ill-fated love, told in the cool shadows of early April, December and late October. I feel like I should be in a supper club listening to the Orchestra performing this one live. The cool vibes, the cocktail horns. Le Setz in a tuxedo. Women in long, clingy gowns, men in impeccable suits, dancing in an elegant but dark and smoky speakeasy. During my first listen, the chorus line had me concerned that this would have a bit of the lyrical redundancy of "Bad Bad Girl (In a Bad Bad World)," but further listens make it clear that the repeated phrase "Kiss Me Deadly" is practically a necessary urgency. This girl, the kind you can't hold onto, doesn't want sweet. She wants to be knocked off her feet. She wants you to turn up the heat. She wants you to Kiss Her Deadly... a lot. She's a woman after my own heart, and this is among my favorite songs on the record. Like that short, steamy love affair that leaves you blue but still wanting more, I wish this song was twelve minutes long instead of just six.

Gimme Some Rhythm Daddy - How can you not grin when you hear this one?? I admit it, I usually don't love Julie Reiten's vocals. That's not to say she isn't a talented singer, she's just not one of my favorites. But I love her on this song, and she and Setzer - and the whole band - are so obviously having a ball together (that laughter at the end, which I'm SO glad they left in, cinches it). The charmingly nonsensical novelty-swing lyrics about rutabagas, lima beans, alligators and crocodiles, brought right into the present day with the mention of GPSs, internet cafes and lattes, make "Rhythm" way more fun to listen to in the car than should be legal. (As an aside, how come you never heard about lactose intolerance in the 40's?) With instrumentation and arrangement reminiscent of the sonically gorgeous "Swing Kids" soundtrack, complete with a fantastically well-swung acoustic guitar solo, the Orchestra seems to be channeling the spirits of Basie and Goodman as they give a nod to "Shout and Feel It" and "Sing Sing Sing." A GREAT dance tune, if you're into fast-flying lindy-hopping. I cannot wait to see this tune performed live.

Lonely Avenue - Brian Setzer's career masterpiece. Lonely Avenue makes melancholy such a gorgeous feeling to experience - other songs that make me actually want to keep feeling sad are "One For My Baby (and One More For the Road)" and "Angel Eyes." That's some pretty amazing company. Frank Sinatra and the Count Basie Orchestra should have been so lucky to record the song "Lonely Avenue." I would love to see this song performed live, with all 30-odd musicians on stage - imagine what a sight and sound that would be.

King of the Whole Damn World - Royal Crown Revue may be the Kings of Gangster Bop, but they have no choice but to abdicate the title to the Brian Setzer Orchestra, at least for this one precisely executed, hard-boiled promise of treachery. RCR's wise-cracking kingpin, Eddie Nichols, practically approves the takeover, singing the part of the staccato, Hell's Kitchen thug muscle to Setzer's smooth, confident Godfather. If you've ever seen RCR live, you can almost see Nichols jumping from foot to foot in a boxer's stance to the perfectly hard-swung beat as he spits and snarls his braggadocio threats. (For as many times as I have listened to this tune, I thought for sure that was the sound of an iPod click at :37. Now I'm fairly certain it's Nichols' meaty fist making contact with the palm of his other hand in a show of power.) All the while, King Setzer sits coolly in the back, in a big easy chair, smokin' a cigar and lookin' smug. A great addition to this Setz-movie.

Mr Jazzer Goes Surfin' / Mr Surfer Goes Jazzin' - A trio-only pair of instrumentals, Mr Jazzer and Mr Surfer give Le Setz the opportunity to flex both his jazz chops and his blindingly fast surf-abilly fingers while the rest of the band has a little intermission, gets a drink, has a smoke...

My Baby Don't Love Me Blues - A great review by Peter Chianca included just one bit with which I take issue: "Setzer probably indulges his inner crooner once too often; "Lonely Avenue" is a fine misty wee-hours ballad, but "My Baby Don't Love Me Blues" only accentuates the limitations of some of his moon-in-June lyrics." I find the lyrics quite fitting for the style, even if they are delightfully non sequitur in places: "If I ever get to China, I'm gonna dig a hole to Carolina..." More importantly, the reviewer doesn't seem to pay any attention to the orchestration and arrangements. The way flutes and clarinets are used on this song deserves attention, they really lend to the evocativeness of it. I can almost hear the slithering, exotic melody playing in Rick's Cafe Americain in Casablanca, Morocco, or on the African Queen as it navigates the treacherous Ulanga River.

Love Partners in Crime - Chianca's review also notes, "Turns out he makes a better Sammy than he does a Dean, as he shows on the bongo-driven two-minute swing rave-up "Love Partners in Crime."" THAT'S what it sounds like! Sammy Davis Jr! I'd been trying to figure out what "Love Partners" reminded me of, why it isn't among my favorites. (I've always preferred Dean to Sammy.) Sometimes it takes an insightful review to point out things you missed. That said, I love the manic excitement of this tune, with that big glitzy Las Vegas sound. (As a totally unnecessary sidenote, I've often said that if Brian Setzer were to show up at my door and ask me to run away with him, I'd go in a heartbeat. With lyrics like, "give me your heart" and "the time for us baby is now!" this is definitely the song playing during the "run away with Setz" scene in the movie in my head!!)

Passion of the Night - This song, along with "Trouble Train," make me understand Brian's comparisons to "Switchblade 327" and "Drive Like Lightning." Like "Love Partners in Crime," there's a taste of Vegas here, and like "Trouble Train," this has the qualities of another urgent train chase - a runaway train careening through the late night underbelly of Sin City, perhaps? The orchestration is ballsy and driving, but the lyrics are crooning pulp, with lyrics like "Night time breaks and so does my heart, it's beautifully broken in two..." The rockabilly crowd will love it, and hate it.

Dimes in the Jar - Setzer's waltzing, dirty growl advances like a threat, layered with a screamingly clean guitar that mirrors its every insistent and determined note. The horns weave themselves seamlessly through the riffs, alternately swaying and stabbing as the rueful, cautionary tale of the fairer and more insidious sex begins. It's a seductive warning with tasty lyrics sung low and clear in the deepest voice ever to come out of Brian Setzer's mouth. It's so unfamiliar that the line "never got handed a dollar by no one" almost sounds out of tune. But this is one of those Setzer semi-autobiographies, and that sound in his voice is genuine truth and feeling. Unlike other songs on the record, in "Dimes In The Jar" Brian Setzer is not just playing a part. The horns smirk and nod as Setzer knowingly sneers about the wicked woman who wants to catch and fetch some poor unsuspecting soul, until "she gets an attorney and his name is Bernie and he'll string you up like a cat." Setzer's voice rises to its familiar gritty rasp as he proclaims with defiant pride, "Every dime in the jar comes from running from dive bar to bar / Every dime in the jar comes from diggin' and scratchin' and stealin' the gold from the stars." The decidedly un-Setzerlike blues-rock guitar solo carries the song's aggressive admonition so well that Setzer cheers himself on with a "yeah!" in the middle of it. As the story continues, Setzer's chest pounding self-satisfaction in the face of the frivolous spending around him becomes ever more strident. At the end, the drums, guitar and screaming vocals grab you by the shoulders and shake you for the last, "please understand me, ain't nobody handin' me dimes that I keep in the jar." Finally, Setzer roughly lets go, glaring and shaking a fist at you as he slowly stalks off. It's an insistent declaration I am happy to hear over and over again. (Yes, this is my favorite song on the record, hands down.)

Elena - We all know Setzer is a guitar master, but sometimes hearing nothing but him, playing nothing he's "known" for, is what it takes to blow us away. The record ends with Setzer confirming, for doubters and followers alike, his undeniable brilliance on the guitar.
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Andi

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PostSubject: Re: 2,077 good words for Songs From Lonely Avenue   Fri Oct 30, 2009 8:48 am

And with that, Rickabilly, I invite you to start a thread too!!

lol!
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PostSubject: Re: 2,077 good words for Songs From Lonely Avenue   Sat Oct 31, 2009 3:50 am

Wow!!! Shocked
Andi that was an awesome Review, and it's really interesting what other Bands/Songs you mentioned to compare the Album with, because in most cases I thought of the same.
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PostSubject: Re: 2,077 good words for Songs From Lonely Avenue   Sat Oct 31, 2009 7:35 am

Those are 2077 very enjoyable words. You write well Andi.

Thanks for posting your review.
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PostSubject: Re: 2,077 good words for Songs From Lonely Avenue   Sat Oct 31, 2009 9:26 am

Thanks fellas! It's easy for me to write like that with such great inspiration. I'm still really chomping at the bit to hear the multitracks, I think that'll add a lot of insight into the songs that you just can't get hearing them "whole."

sunny
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PostSubject: Re: 2,077 good words for Songs From Lonely Avenue   Sun Nov 01, 2009 4:56 pm

I just happened to check the Fifth Fret (the GuitarWorld magazine blog) to read about Tavo's Nocturne again and noticed that back on October 17, a review of Songs From Lonely Avenue was posted! I'm excited to read a positive review as detailed as mine (even more so, at more than 3,400 words!!) from a guitar aficionado and a Setzer fan who isn't as heavily biased as I am! Check it out here. Here's the text:

I'm a big fan of Brian Setzer. I may not like all of his music, or agree with his statements, but I'm still a huge fan because he's a cool guy. I mean, just look at that picture above. He looks wickedly classy in that suit and, while I've always enjoyed the stripped-down attitude he takes with his Gretsch Hot Rods, I've never really wanted one, but looking at it in that light, and looking at the whole picture in general makes me wonder if I could ever look that cool myself.

Probably not.

When Brian Setzer first hit the scene with a big band behind him he splashed in a big way with "Jump Jive An' Wail," a song I'm willing to bet most people associate with him to this day.

On a tangent, I think it's pretty amazing when a group/band/artist can have a staple song for a generation and then have ANOTHER one for ANOTHER generation. Not two songs that are latched onto by the same generation, not a cover of a song that happens to still hit a note with a new generation, but two completely different songs and styles for two completely different generations. In Setzer's case you have Stray Cat Strut and Jump Jive An' Wail.

But I've never been ridiculously impressed with his BSO days. Each album seemed like progress though and I am a fan of progress. This new album of his made me think that all his years writing charts for the band has finally materialized into something that just... fits.

I pose to you a couple of questions:

1) Don't you hate it when a modern swing band does absolutely nothing modern? When they just rehash the past? I do.

2) Don't you hate it when ANY band has an album where the first song sounds the same as every song after it? I do.

Well, you don't ever really have to worry about that with any Setzer album, but this one in particular shines as a bright example of how things should be done.

It all seems like a theme album but a theme album that is loosely tied together, where you can listen to the songs out of order and not be lost and they all have the same general vibe without sounding like they're all part of the same song.

So what's the vibe?

Noir.

The whole album seems like something you would listen to while walking in the rain, the water dripping off the front of your fedora, or at the very least at night, after the rain, the glow of neon lights reflecting in still puddles collected on the streets or sidewalks while you contemplated your life and surroundings, both the good parts and bad parts.

And it is AWESOME.

To be completely fair, I have never been a huge BSO fan. I really like the Stray Cats, I really like Brian Setzer's solo stuff, but (besides the Christmas albums) I'm just not that big into the BSO. When they hit the scene, the Cherry Poppin' Daddies were right there too with their swing CD Zoot Suit Riot which, though it produced only one hit, was filled with amazingly swing-able, complex and some downright ANGRY songs that all had a sense of urgency to them, where more traditional bands like the BSO or Big Bad Voodoo Daddy were a little more laid back, a little more non-threatening. The music was very similar, but I responded much more to the Cherry Poppin' Daddies and I think I figured out why.

The BSO, as qualified as they are, never seemed to click to me. I never got the impression that this was the perfect music for them to play because it fit them so well.

Until now.

And how odd is it that a big band fronted by a rockabilly cat from the Northeast can make an album that feels like this is exactly what the BSO was meant to do and all the albums leading up to this one was just practice?

Well, I think it's odd.

But let's talk about the album. Let's go through it track by track, with brief rundowns of each.

1) Trouble Train - If you were to look through this album for a song that reminds you of traditional BSO, this would probably be it. It has an amazing start with the drums. It seems that today you can't find drummers who have more than two gears (silent and ON!!!) but this opens up with a nice intro to the cymbals that is not overpowering at all and then goes even more quiet lending some good anticipation for Setzer's opening lick.

2) Dead Man Incorporated - Listening to this song, I was always thinking about skipping forward to the next track because the music wasn't keeping my attention. I didn't though. I was too rapt with the story that Setzer was telling with the story. This isn't a knock on Setzer's music writing skill, we all know it's tough to write songs, let alone songs that blend both well-written lyrics or a good story with a good instrumental backing. It seems like most of the time you either have songs that are really good musically with awful lyrics or really good lyrics and not very strong music. The fact that Setzer so often walks the line of great music AND great lyrics is great, but it means that songs that would normally slide by are deemed "mediocre" musically. The mediocrity stops in the middle though with an incredibly interesting breakdown.

3) Kiss Me Deadly - I ordered this album through the mail without looking at the track list. I knew it was a new Setzer album and I wanted to review it so I didn't pay too much attention to the details until I received it and walking back to my door I saw "Kiss Me Deadly" and stopped. I know Setzer loves to cover stuff but... Lita Ford? I mean, he COULD, but with a big band, how is he going to reinterpret an 80s metal song sung by floor-writhing, leotard-wearing, BC Rich Warlock-playing Lita Ford? The mental image of what could be on the disc was a little frightening honestly, and because of this, it was my most anticipated song.

It is NOT the same song, it just has the same title. Musically, it has the same kind of build as "Santa Rosa Rita" where the verses are a bit of slow burner (not a bad thing) and then a strong chorus and it's a great song. The chorus is as close to a fist pumping chorus as the BSO has ever done in my opinion, and if you want to talk about the style of the song, this is the most noir-dripping song on the disc. The lyrics could have very well been lifted directly from an old detective movie with harsh shadows and femme fatales. It also features a tremolo-heavy solo which I appreciated since I couldn't remember any songs with such blatant use of the effect and it works out really well.

4) Give Me Some Rhythm Daddy - Setzer can do a lot of things really well. He can get great tone, he can write a billion songs in different genres, he can play circles around anyone that gets near him AND he can duet.

Duets get little to no credit because they so often end up being performed badly but when they are really hitting the mark, it's pretty awesome stuff. My personal favorite duet was on John Mellencamp's album "Dance Naked" which featured Me'shell Ndegeocello on the track "Wild Night." They are underrated, but have a lot of potential.

Setzer has had a few times in the past where he's done duets, whether they be sung like on this track or a little more spoken-word like on his Christmas track "It's Cold Outside" when he sand with Ann-Margret. The rhythm is fast, it's very danceable and both Setzer and Julie Reiten are singing in top-notch form. It's just a great song. And my favorite part is the nod to modern times. It isn't like the whole album crashes down musically into modern music or anything, but there's just a wink from Julie that says we aren't in the 30s right now. I really liked it.

And let's talk solos: this one has an amazing one. It's like Setzer was channelling Reinhardt instead of Gallup and for those of us that really focus on his playing and tone, this is something that takes you completely off guard and reminds you why you like his playing in the first place.

5) Lonely Avenue - The first few times I listened to this album, I was thinking that this track left a little to be desired because it was a bit slow but after a while, I got it. This is a standard. It just hasn't been around long enough, hasn't been adopted by enough people to be considered one. Yet. But it would fit in perfectly with songs sung by famous crooners half a century ago. Once you realize that it's a standard and NOT your average toe tapping swing song, or rockabilly-drenched song, you'll see the genius behind it.

6) King of the Whole Damn World - Eddie Nichols pops up on this track. I had never heard his name, but just listening to this track, I am incredibly interested in his stuff with Royal Crown Revue. I'm getting ahead of myself a bit though. This is another duet, but less of a you sing/I sing or we sing together and more of an interesting juxtaposition. Setzer croons and sings his way through the sing while Nichols has a staccato style that is both fun to listen to and a little scary if you think "maybe he's talking about me." You certainly wouldn't want to hear someone plotting your demise, and with this track you're able to and it is a stand out track on this album. GREAT song. Great lyrics, great music, great package all together. I love it.

7) Mr. Jazzer Goes Surfin' - Let's talk tone. Setzer's got it. He's got a couple different versions be they acoustic tone, his rockabilly tone, his more jazzy big band-leading tone, etc. It all sounds good though and this track, the first instrumental on the disc is no exception. It's jazzy but my favorite thing about it is that it's dirty. Too often you hear jazz players go for clean as clean can be cleans and it ends up sounding unauthentic to me, like a guy at a party on his very very VERY best behavior, wearing a nice suit and his hair is done very nicely, but you know him. You went to the bar with him last night and he's a sloppy guy who's a little rough around the edges and now you see him like this and can't help but inwardly say "fake."

That's how I feel about most jazz. But here's Setzer playing jazz that is indisputably jazz but it's got a little dirt to it and because of that it feels more real and the song just goes along and is a great addition to the album, not only because Setzer REALLY knows how to write instrumentals, but because the big band is vacant from this track and the next so it gives the listener a bit of a break or intermission. This breather is appreciated not because the previous material was really bad in any way, but because it will make you more greatly appreciate what's coming up.

Cool Mr. Surfer Goes Jazzin' - If it were possible for you to read with your eyes closed I would say close your eyes but since that is not the case, please keep reading, but do so with an open mind. Imagine driving as fast as you possibly can on tight, winding roads on cliff sides in a convertible. The wind is rushing through your hair, you hear your engine just killing itself, your heart is in your throat, the danger is tangible and it just won't stop. Then the road takes you into a scenic forest where you're going just as fast but now there's different scenery and it doesn't FEEL as if you're going as fast as you were. And then the trees part and it's like you're ejected back onto the cliff-side streets at full force until, at last, you pull over to the side and breathe a ragged breath you never realized you were holding and thank your lucky stars it ended as good as it did instead of in a fiery crash.

That right there, IS this song.

9) My Baby Don't Love Me Blues - If this track were placed in a different place on the album, I would probably love it more than I do. It is NOT a bad song at all, but after the white knuckle excitement of Mr. Surfer you can't help but feel like you've been slowed down QUITE a bit by this track. If you go on with the car analogy from before, this is where your car gets a flat and while you aren't a fan of coming to a halt or changing your tire, it really isn't that bad of surrounding scenery.

10) Love Partners in Crime - This song is fairly quick, but it's deceptive in it's quickness. Let me explain. The vocal melody is fast and urgent. It's awesome. But if you listen to it either with your speakers turned WAY up, or with headphones you'll hear Setzer playing under the vocal melody at probably twice the speed of the vocal melody and the jazzy changes he chooses leave you wondering how he did that. You know jazz players though: they make anything sound complicated, but if this IS a bunch of easy jazz phrases, I don't hear it. It's a great use of the guitar and the song in general is a good one, one that makes you smile and tap your foot (quickly) when you hear it.

11) Passion of the Night - If you've ever heard the Reverend Horton Heat's "Five-O Ford" the intro run of rapid-fire staccato single notes might sound familiar but that doesn't mean it's a rip off at all. Far from it. This is one more of those songs that feature spectacular uses of shifts in time, tempo and urgency. If roller coasters could be a bit more subtle, I would equate this song to one, where at the end you ask yourself "hey! How about THAT?" And when a song can do that, it's a good thing.

12) Dimes in the Jar - I really like this song. It has this feel to it that just seems... well, if Brian Setzer were to ever play a Texas roadhouse, this would probably be the opening song. It doesn't sound entirely like the stereotypical Texas blues, but the breaks separating the verses from choruses have this amazing-sounding riff that sounds like blues guys would have LOVED to use it a LOT through the years, but this is the first time I've had the chance.

And speaking of blues, whereas most of the solos on this album definitely have more of a jazz leaning, this one is definitely rooted in the blues and it sounds good. Does it sound like Setzer wearing a poncho? Not at all. It still sounds like Setzer, but it sounds like a Setzer if he was just playing around in his living room trying his hand at different genres and as with just about everything else, he sounds like he has a huge knack for it.

13) Elena - Most albums end on a note that isn't really anything special. Perhaps it's a song that is a lot like the first one to help signify the end of the journey, or maybe it's where the artist sticks a song that is ridiculously unlike anything else that band has ever made. So MANY albums end on a poorly chosen note, that I had to wait this whole time to hear my first good one.

And WHAT a good one! This song is crazy! In my mind (since I've never talked to him) Setzer knows who's buying his albums and he knows that his guitar playing gets some serious attention so why not give the people something to talk about? This song sheds the Roland echo with it's delicious-sounding pre-amp, sheds his trademark Bassmans and 6120s, sheds his BAND, and even sheds electricity. It's done completely solo, and completely on an acoustic in a FLAMENCO style. Does it fit with the rest of the album? Not really, but when you're listening to it I DARE you to say that that minor detail matters considering the awesome weight of this song. This song reminded me of everything I loved about Setzer. It was like the first time I ever heard him all over again. While listening to it, I never wanted it to end and when it did, I wanted to go out and buy more albums from him, I wanted to play until my fingers bled trying to cop the tones he gets all the time, I wanted to go out and buy an orange 6120SSLVO (a cool guitar, but not REALLY my style).

In the end, isn't all that fanaticism what you want people to experience with the last track?

__________________________________

So in the end you have to weigh your options for buying any album and see if this plays into it. The more and more iTunes grows the more and more album artists need to step up the quality of their music to justify people buying the whole album instead of select tracks.

Is this album worth getting it all? Yes! Hands down yes. This is the best the BSO has EVER been in my eyes (or ears) and even the mediocre songs on the album are lovable with just a little more time spent listening to them.

If you're a collector, Surfdog Records has a package for you that is pretty insane too. I just have the CD, but if you want to go nuts, they're more than willing to accommodate with a deluxe package that will go down in history as defining the word "deluxe." It comes with the album on CD and the album split up on four 12" 45RPM LPs mastered for superior audio quality. It comes with a slipmat for your record player. It comes with guitar picks, a gatefold LP, three glossy 8X10 photos, a 12 page booklet with photos and lyrics, and the big, big, BIG thing that separates the men from the boys:

Every INDIVIDUAL track. I don't mean track one, track two, either. I mean YOU can make your OWN version of this album. Oh, MAN, I wish Surfdog would have sent me this so I could have written about it more but going by the description, it sounds like you can decide if you want to keep the horns and strings, or lose everyone but Setzer making it another solo record. This has some pretty crazy potential and if I had shareware I would probably take a gander to see if anyone has tried their hands at mixing and mastering the tracks and see just how good they were at it. I think perhaps Setzer or Surfdog should put people's creations on their sites for download too and embrace the creativity that they're giving away with this package.

If all that sounds like your cup of tea, Surfdog will sell it to you for 129.99 and there is a bit of a wait so they'll include the MP3s for the tracks immediately so you don't have to wait to listen to the album.

Now, I have to say that the oddest, most unexpected emotion that this album brought up was an absolutely staggering amount of rage directed toward Rod Stewart. Some of you already know, he has pumped out quite a few albums filled with American Standards and while they're good, Setzer an do better. MUCH better. This album proves it. And I say don't worry about that minor detail, Brian! Take him on! I'd buy them because I know your version of "Fly Me To The Moon" will be awesome. Setzer doesn't even need to really improve the songs that much because they're so great but croon for croon, Setzer beats out Stewart in every way.

So in summary, this album is amazing and I would recommend buying it very much!

-Pappy
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Andi

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PostSubject: Re: 2,077 good words for Songs From Lonely Avenue   Sun Nov 01, 2009 5:15 pm

I posted that before I had a chance to read it all the way through. I just read it all the way through. I have never read a review that made me immediately want to listen to a record all over again - particularly not one that I've already listened to hundreds of times. That was bloody awesome.
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PostSubject: Re: 2,077 good words for Songs From Lonely Avenue   Sun Nov 01, 2009 7:25 pm

Hmm more words to describe it than actually appear on the album...hmmm...Ireally think it stands on its own merit and speaks volumes for itself, how many words is this? I've been mistaken before but anyway who's started the screenplay to this.
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sidelake bob

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PostSubject: Re: 2,077 good words for Songs From Lonely Avenue   Mon Nov 02, 2009 12:26 am

Awsome review! Thanks for posting Andi.
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PostSubject: Re: 2,077 good words for Songs From Lonely Avenue   Mon Nov 02, 2009 1:18 pm

Andi,

your words are eloquent. I kept looking for a source thinking you did a cut and paste from some Mag. Very well done, indeed!.
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Andi

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PostSubject: Re: 2,077 good words for Songs From Lonely Avenue   Mon Nov 02, 2009 2:28 pm

Thanks Sharky and Lelle!

Personally I really enjoy reading others' insights and reviews, it literally makes me hear music better, points out things I might not have considered or might've missed completely... that's one of the reasons I really dug the Fifth Fret review. Lots of great points that I hadn't picked up when listening myself (and some great imagery too!)

But that's just me. Reading a buncha words isn't for everybody.
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