Today is significant for two reasons:
- I started this blog exactly 3 years ago today and have since listened to and posted about 1,170 different albums. Actually, it’s probably more that that but that’s how many albums are represented within these online pages. Yay me!
- I would have been competing in the EPiC Challenge today had things not gone awry back in April forcing organizers to cancel the event outright (click HERE) and, hence, postpone my big day to next year instead.
Instead, I rode a nice 60k tempo ride this morning, followed that up with a nice nap with Tina the Cat in front of the opening stage of the Tour de France and then I went for a 3100m drill swim. In total this week, I covered exactly 238 kilometers worth of distance. Not bad for a guy who didn’t have anything in particular to train for. So I’m rewarding myself this afternoon with a nice relaxing yoga stretch and core session with some nice mellow tunes a la the newest album by Britta Phillips, ‘Luck of Magic‘.
In case you didn’t know who Britta Phillips is, she is the better half to Dean Wareham and together, they formed Luna. Some of you might also know her as the voice to Jem of the popular animated ‘Jem & The Holograms‘ cartoon series and she has co-starred in the teen rock band movie ‘Satisfaction’, also starring Justine Bateman, Julia Roberts, Liam Neeson. She is also part and parcel with the duo Dean & Britta, as well as other solo projects of which this album is part. All in all, her career has spanned nearly 30 years. Pretty impressive for someone you may never have heard anything about, right?
Anyway, ‘Luck or Magic‘ is her new enterprise released just this past April on Double Feature Records. The album consists of half-originals, half-covers…but it’s all awesome.
The opening track ‘Daydream‘ could easily be a suitable Bond theme with its symphonic underpinnings, retro guitar tones, unconventional melody, and yearning vocal delivery (“I’ll stay here and wait/And I’ll pray for the day”). Another original, ‘Do It Last‘, blends airy trebles with ’70s soul for an equally sensual offering about being the partner that lasts. The originals fall along similar sounds, producing a cool, mellow, and lovely record. One exception is the slightly unsettling closing track “Ingrid Superstar,” named after the former Andy Warhol superstar who disappeared in 1984 and has not been found.
From amongst the covers, a standout is the Cars‘ ‘Drive‘, which expands on the aching power pop ballad’s ringing synths. You’ll never listen to the original the same way – promise. Elsewhere, a shimmering version of Evie Sands’ ‘One Fine Summer Morning‘ retains the 1969 song’s wistfulness, hand drums, and playful bass, adding an inspired flute solo that sounds of the past but isn’t. Other revisions include tunes by Fleetwood Mac (‘Landslide‘), Dennis Wilson (‘Fallin’ in Love‘), and Agnetha Fältskog of ABBA (‘Wrap Your Arms Around Me‘).
It was a fun listen for sure. Made all the better for the fact that there was not a single person in the gym while I stretched. I wouldn’t quite tack it onto my Best of 2016 list, but I’m no worse off for hearing it.
So going back to the total number of posts in this blog over the past 3 years, 1,170. That basically means then that I’ve listened to at least, on the average, 390 albums a year, or 1.968 albums per day. That’s pretty awesome. And among all these albums there is a healthy representation for just about every type of music you can think of: Jazz, Blues, Country/Bluegrass, Funk, Folk, Alt-Country/Americana, Ambient, Prog, Canadian, Christmas, Psychedelic, and just out right fucked up cornball shit that doesn’t quite so neatly fit into any of the above. And not all of it was good either (click HERE).
Man, am I a real musical Renaissance Man or what?