As summer is getting closer to the mark, I've been finding myself hitting rummage sales and thrift shops, anywhere I could buy music for real cheap. One of these stops, was at at a blogging friend RWWackoStu's rummage sale in Sturtevant. There I picked up Oranges and Lemons from XTC. Those who don't know XTC, it is a band that is best described as New Wave meets the psychedelia pop of the Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's and the Beach Boys' Pet Sounds with a twist of REM. Sounds different don't it? It is. Oranges and Lemons is a record exploding with details, while sonically rich and filled with immaculately crafted songs.
This afternoon, my girlfriend and I stopped at the library to check out the book sale that they were having there. Not only we picked up some books and video cassettes for dirt cheap, I picked up a dozen albums for a buck. Two of these were for the Southern prog rock band, the Dixie Dregs. I've heard of these guys before and I was familiar with the guitarist Steve Morse who played for Kansas and Deep Purple. The Dixie Dregs is a complicated band. Mostly instrumental, the Dregs employ a wide variety of sounds to the listener. It's Southern rock with a violin player and a keyboardist. Kinda like an instrumental version of Lynyrd Skynyrd meeting with Kansas, Yes and bluegrass. Hard to explain, yet I like it. To make our day, we ran into OrbsCorbs on the way out.
The band I've been digging SOOO much lately is Badfinger. Although my Badfinger tapes have been silent for the past few years, much of the resurgence was due of interest in john's Rock Roots blog. As I pulled my tapes to listen to, I remembered what I was forgetting-a Beatleque like band with strong catchy hooks and crafty lyrics. Anyone can sing along to their songs! Anyways, Badfinger suffered dearly due mismanagement of the band. Once recording under the Beatles' Apple Records label, the band fell under hard times when Apple Records went under. Unable to secure a new label, the band went under. Because of the financial issues, guitarist/vocalist Peter Ham committed suicide by hanging, followed by the baas player Tom Evans years later. A damn shame, These are f#*king good! If you love the Beatles, you'll like these guys!