Music

The Sights: Left Over Right

Detroit garage/pop/soul ravers may be mellowing a bit with age, but they still know how to keep the party going.


The Sights

Left Over Right

Label: HRM
US Release Date: 2012-06-19
UK Release Date: 2012-05-10
Amazon
iTunes

One of the more welcome returns to the garage scene has been Eddie Baranek, d/b/a the Sights -- one-time almost-saviors of rock and roll (back in the heady days of the early '00s) who bowed out of the game for a while, only to pick up right where he left off with 2010’s Most Of What Follows Is True. Baranek’s one of those effortless masters of garage/pop/R&B/soul -- he’s the kind of guy Little Steven wishes he could clone and add to every three piece combo -- but he’s never rested on his laurels, and Left Over Right finds him expanding his palette on an album run riot with saxophone, trombone and organs galore. With drummer Skip Denomme and multi-instrumentalist Gordon Smith returning from 2010’s line-up, Left Over Right mostly sidesteps Most Of What Follows’ country influence and builds on the horn section that the band introduced on that record. "Fool (I Can’t Stop Making Out With You)" is a joyous blast of Paul Revere-style rave-up. "Prayer", meanwhile, offers Baranek’s Mission Statement over sprightly organ: "I turn bitter into sweet / I can do it in my sleep" and then proves it by deftly chronicling bad relationships on the midtempo piano number "Bad Man", the splenetic "Not As Pretty" and (in the "sweet" column) the McCartney-pop-meets-barroom-swagger of "You Are the Sunshine".

Admittedly, there’s less guitar heroics to be found on Left Over Right than on previous Sights albums (though check out the Big Rock Solo on "Anything to Anyone" to hear that they’ve still got it), but these lifers know that there’s more to rock and roll than six-string theatrics.

7

In the wake of Malcolm Young's passing, Jesse Fink, author of The Youngs: The Brothers Who Built AC/DC, offers up his top 10 AC/DC songs, each seasoned with a dash of backstory.

In the wake of Malcolm Young's passing, Jesse Fink, author of The Youngs: The Brothers Who Built AC/DC, offers up his top 10 AC/DC songs, each seasoned with a dash of backstory.

Keep reading... Show less

Pauline Black may be called the Queen of Ska by some, but she insists she's not the only one, as Two-Tone legends the Selecter celebrate another stellar album in a career full of them.

Being commonly hailed as the "Queen" of a genre of music is no mean feat, but for Pauline Black, singer/songwriter of Two-Tone legends the Selecter and universally recognised "Queen of Ska", it is something she seems to take in her stride. "People can call you whatever they like," she tells PopMatters, "so I suppose it's better that they call you something really good!"

Keep reading... Show less

Morrison's prose is so engaging and welcoming that it's easy to miss the irreconcilable ambiguities that are set forth in her prose as ineluctable convictions.

It's a common enough gambit in science fiction. Humans come across a race of aliens that appear to be entirely alike and yet one group of said aliens subordinates the other, visiting violence upon their persons, denigrating them openly and without social or legal consequence, humiliating them at every turn. The humans inquire why certain of the aliens are subjected to such degradation when there are no discernible differences among the entire race of aliens, at least from the human point of view. The aliens then explain that the subordinated group all share some minor trait (say the left nostril is oh-so-slightly larger than the right while the "superior" group all have slightly enlarged right nostrils)—something thatm from the human vantage pointm is utterly ridiculous. This minor difference not only explains but, for the alien understanding, justifies the inequitable treatment, even the enslavement of the subordinate group. And there you have the quandary of Otherness in a nutshell.

Keep reading... Show less
3

A 1996 classic, Shawn Colvin's album of mature pop is also one of best break-up albums, comparable lyrically and musically to Joni Mitchell's Hejira and Bob Dylan's Blood on the Tracks.

When pop-folksinger Shawn Colvin released A Few Small Repairs in 1996, the music world was ripe for an album of sharp, catchy songs by a female singer-songwriter. Lilith Fair, the tour for women in the music, would gross $16 million in 1997. Colvin would be a main stage artist in all three years of the tour, playing alongside Liz Phair, Suzanne Vega, Sheryl Crow, Sarah McLachlan, Meshell Ndegeocello, Joan Osborne, Lisa Loeb, Erykah Badu, and many others. Strong female artists were not only making great music (when were they not?) but also having bold success. Alanis Morissette's Jagged Little Pill preceded Colvin's fourth recording by just 16 months.

Keep reading... Show less
9

Frank Miller locates our tragedy and warps it into his own brutal beauty.

In terms of continuity, the so-called promotion of this entry as Miller's “third" in the series is deceptively cryptic. Miller's mid-'80s limited series The Dark Knight Returns (or DKR) is a “Top 5 All-Time" graphic novel, if not easily “Top 3". His intertextual and metatextual themes resonated then as they do now, a reason this source material was “go to" for Christopher Nolan when he resurrected the franchise for Warner Bros. in the mid-00s. The sheer iconicity of DKR posits a seminal work in the artist's canon, which shares company with the likes of Sin City, 300, and an influential run on Daredevil, to name a few.

Keep reading... Show less
8
Pop Ten
Mixed Media
PM Picks

© 1999-2017 Popmatters.com. All rights reserved.
Popmatters is wholly independently owned and operated.

rating-image