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by Tim Hardin

29 Feb 2016


“I have had people who have listened to the material since, and they said they can’t understand why we didn’t get signed. But at the time that we put out that material, people were still expecting long jams.  It was before the so-called New Wave stuff took on and became more pop and what not, the shorter song format.  I just write it off to timing, but I wouldn’t trade the experience for anything in the world…”
—Jack Casady interview in Relix magazine, February 1986

It has been 35 years since San Francisco rock band SVT released their only full length album, No Regrets. Much has shifted in music, particularly rock music, since that time, and this album may have something to tell us, in retrospect, about directions in rock music, generally. More importantly, however, it may be time for a reconsideration of the band’s output, in particular the songs of their lead singer/guitarist, Brian Marnell.

by Evan Sawdey

25 Feb 2016


Maybe you had to be there—but hell, maybe you didn’t.

At the Hideout, an appropriately-named Chicago bar and venue that is so dubbed for being sandwiched (hidden, arguably) between the Chicago river and one of its great highways, a four-act set was performing that evening for a fun literary and vaguely hipster-y crowd. The opening sets were fine, but by the time that New Jersey’s own Miracles of Modern Science took the stage, with mandolin, double-bass, violin, cello, and a tight drum set, the crowd knew they were in for something special, but after hitting the crowd with instantly-hummable pop hooks, chant-along vocals, some beautiful melodic gestures, and a genuine sense of fun and chemistry, everyone in the room turned into a fan (the group went third, and the act that followed played to half-capacity as so many swarmed the band and purchased merch). Realizing they had about ten minutes left in their set though, the “MOMS” took all their instruments out into the crowd and played one hell of a cover of “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” and followed that up with their maniacal, bloody, whimsical gothic horror song that was the secret track off of their first-ever album and was dubbed, tellingly, “Secret Track”. Every band member became a character, their faces and voices stretched into cartoon proportions, and it made for one of the most unique shows that went on in Chicago in 2015.

by Sloane Spencer

23 Feb 2016


Kevin Gordon‘s latest album, Long Gone Time, continues his thoughtful, critical examination of reconciling your love for family with deeply held incompatible beliefs. Country Fried Rock previously featured Gordon following his album, Gloryland. Gordon again recorded with his friend and frequent guitar player, Joe V. McMahan, and funded the album with a personal twist on crowdfunding, detailed in our conversation. We recorded this program in our AirBnB in East Nashville during AmericanaFest 2015.

by Jason Mendelsohn and Eric Klinger

19 Feb 2016


Klinger: I’ll be honest with you, Mendelsohn. I’ve never given much thought to Thin Lizzy. As a sentient human being with a beating heart, I enjoy the song “The Boys Are Back in Town”, and I know I have a copy of Jailbreak on vinyl around here somewhere. I’ve been in a few party situations where a few guys were gathered around the stereo waxing rhapsodic about Scott Gorham and Brian Robertson’s twin-guitar attack. And I remember when Phil Lynott died (30—good God, really?—years ago), and thinking that was a damn shame. Still, they’ve never been a group I’ve really sat down and paid close attention to. Which is also a damn shame, because Jailbreak is a very good album. Fusing Dylanesque and Springsteenian lyrics with harder rock guitars, Jailbreak seems like one of those albums that it’s difficult to argue with. Theoretically, it should appeal to rock nerds of all stripes.

by Joshua M. Miller

16 Feb 2016


This year Tom Petty will celebrate a impressively big milestone in his career: the 40th anniversary of his band Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. In 1976, the Gainesville, Florida-based band released its self-titled debut, a stunning collection of raw rock and roll songs. Petty and his bandmates soon found much success with each following show and album and for good reason: listeners could relate to Petty’s often character and story-driven lyrics about everyday life in America and standing your ground and fighting for what’s important. He also has a knack for writing catchy rock and roll songs like “American Girl.” During its 40 years, the band released an impressive 13 studio albums, including 2014’s Hypnotic Eye. Petty also released three solo albums, including the perennial favorite Full Moon Fever. He also was part of the star-studded Traveling Wilburys and reunited his pre-Heartbreakers band Mudcrutch.

With news that he’s planning to release a previously unreleased collection of songs recorded during the sessions for his 1994 solo album Wildflowers, it seemed as good time as any to look back. Throughout his prolific career Petty has challenged himself to keep things interesting and reinvent himself, while also staying true to himself and not giving in to what a label wants him to do. Narrowing a 40-plus year career to 20 songs can be daunting task (especially if you consider the album deep cuts and B-sides from his 1995 boxset Playback),but here are some of the stand-outs from Petty’s four decade-long career, limited to one song per album.

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Virtual Reality and Storytelling: What Happens When Art and Technology Collide?

// Moving Pixels

"Virtual reality is changing the face of entertainment, and I can see a future when I will find myself inside VR listening to some psych-rock while meditating on an asteroid.

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