New York Music Daily

Love's the Only Engine of Survival

Category: country music

Sweet Megg Brings Her Imaginative, Dynamic Take on Western Swing to a Familiar Williamsburg Haunt

Where Bob Wills started with country and blues and added jazz to the mix to create western swing, singer Megg Farrell starts with swing jazz as a starting point for her latest album, My Window Faces the South, streaming at Bandcamp. It’s a party album, but it’s also an innovative mix of vintage styles. She’s keeping her cowboy hat on for her next gig on Nov 26 at 9 PM at Skinny Dennis. For those who might dread Williamsburg on a weekend night, consider that a lot of the contingent who make that neighborhood such a miserable place will probably still be out of town for Thanksgiving.

Sweet Megg, as she’s known, switches effortlessly between the many types of oldtime Americana she’s explored from the start of her career about ten years ago. She reaches down for a low-key, mistier take on Patsy Cline in the opening number, Faded Love. Fiddler Billy Contreras fires off a deliciously slinky solo midway through, trumpeter Mike Davis and saxophonist Ricky Alexander punching in with bright harmonies over the groove of bassist Dennis Crouch and drummer Chris Gelb.

The band blend dixieland flair and a little jump blues over an oldtime swing beat in the next track, Hesitation Blues. There’s an accordion along with Chris Scruggs’ steel guitar on a balmy version of I Can’t Stop Loving You; then the band pick up the pace with There’ll Be Some Changes Made, with Contreras’ fiddle, Alexander’s clarinet and Scruggs’ scrambling steel front and center.

The album’s title track gets a sly cha-cha intro and some spiraling ragtime piano from Dalton Ridenhour before the horns and the steel pair off. The tricky intro to Sentimental Gentleman from Georgia is there to fake you out: Farrell and the band make hi-de-ho country out of it, if you can imagine that.

They really nail a hazy, wistfully nocturnal atmosphere in their lush, enveloping version of Stardust, fueled by Ridenhour’s steady C&W piano. Farrell and Alexander harmonize in an oldtime swing-infused take of I’ve Got a Feeling I’m Falling as Contreras flickers in the background. And they have fun reinventing the Tennessee Waltz, first with just Farrell’s vocals over animated slip-key piano, then Scruggs comes in sailing overhead.

Likewise, Ridenhour and Gelb give an incisive, imaginative drive to Those Memories of You. They close with Trouble in Mind, Farrell and the group stretching further out into the jazz that brought them here. On one hand, almost all of the songs here have been done to death: credit this inspired cast for breathing new life into them.

Advertisement

Big Halloween Finale, 2022: A Mighty History Book, For Free and More

The last batch of singles here was supposed to be the final Halloween dump, but things are unfolding so fast around the world that today requires another, A free magnum opus, outrageously funny memes and some tunes too. As always, click on artist or author names for their webpages, click on titles for audio, visuals, a quick read and probably a laugh.

Jason Powers is one of the hardest-working investigative journalists on the web. He did a killer piece on Renee Wegrzyn, the recently appointed US genetic engineering tsar, complete with receipts and Hunter Biden connection. Just for today, he’s put the new fifth edition of his book Operation Virus up at his Substack as a free download. It turns into a pumpkin at the stroke of midnight, October 31.

This working history of the plandemic and its origins is long, meticulously linked and has as many footnotes as Bobby Kennedy’s The Real Anthony Fauci. Powers is quick to remind that it’s as much a guide to where the gaps are as it is to what we actually know. Where Sage Hana is the avenging angel of the freedom movement, Tessa Lena is our soul guide philosopher and Mark Crispin Miller is the erudite, polymath department chair, Powers is a dogged, tireless, quintessentially down-to-earth Indiana sleuth. Grab this book now and sink your teeth into it: it’s many days of reading. Then find your own rabbit hole and do your own research and reporting.

MCM has great taste in music and since 2020 has been a prime source of protest songs. Here’s his latest playlist. Highlights: Safe and Free, Jude Roberts’ deadpan, Appalachian-tinged chronicle of how the plandemic destroyed independent businesses, and Safe and Effective, Chris Porro‘s snarky honkytonk tune. Stick around for the surprise ending!

Have you seen the ThinkTwice Team‘s memes? The first batch are spot-on parodies of lockdowner propaganda posters: muzzles, idiot circles, antisocial distancing, the works. There’s one for every divide-and-conquer scheme. If these last 31 months have been hard on you, this will leave you with a redemptive smirk.

Song lyric puzzle: this is Doo Wah Diddy, via El Gato Malo for more laughs:

The Juice Media in Australia have been having a sublimely amusing time with global politics. Here’s Zoe Amanda Wilson and Lucy calling bullshit on the Oz/US nuke submarine deal (thanks to Sage for finding that one).

Meme maven Anne Gibbons on the Hochul concentration camp regulation, its initial defeat and possible resurrection.

St. Petersburg, Florida whistleblower OB/GYN doctor Kimberly Biss drops a truth bomb: miscarriages up 50%, infertility up 50%, cervical cancer up 25% since the lethal Covid injection rollout.

Broken Peach just recorded The Night of the Halloween Specials, a live 23-minute medley: quirkily creepy punk rock versions of Tainted Love, Personal Jesus, I Put a Spell on You, Don’t You Want Me Baby and originals with impeccably choreographed four-part harmonies.

Let’s end this with Funkrust Brass Band playing an inspiring live take of theit latest single, Ignition. Set the night onfire!

Halloween Month Singles, Vol. 1

Today is a big dump of really creepy stuff, but plenty of ridiculously funny video and some calmer, organically-rooted sounds to balance things out. Some songs, some visuals, a macabre video skit and a few short reads, a long album’s worth of entertainment. Click on artist or author names for their webpages, click on titles for audio, video or a quick read.

Soon-to-be-expat New Yorker Daisy Moses offers her usual spot-on, hilarious take on Lizzo using her expert lips and tongue on James Madison’s 200-year-old crystal flute. Too funny: 2-minute read with videos

Investigative journalist Joel Smalley discovers that he’s somehow received not just one but two Covid shots! The UK National Health system says he did but can’t explain how. Too funny. 28-second silent video

The Halloween video of the week comes to us via Mark Crispin Miller‘s weekly chronicle of the casualties of Operation Herod. Is it deadly to be in close contact with Charles In Charge? Scroll down to the third video,

Here’s ex-BlackRock hedge fund analyst Ed Dowd – the first to blow the whistle on the lethal Covid injection’s effect on all-cause mortality – on the Jerm Warfare podcast, via Sage Hana. This is one of her savagely spot-on videos, with a surprise ending

Here’s another funny one: Prof. Freedom’s Covid Religion video – a free download at Unbekoming (scroll down about 3/4 down the page). Plus a bonus chapter from Dr. Mark McDonald’s future classic 2020 broadside, United States of Fear.

Investigative journalist Etana Hecht suggests to a script-reading CDC contractor phone operator that she might want to turn whistleblower. The good stuff, with some VERY pregnant pauses, starts at about 6:50 in the audio of the phone call: scroll to the bottom of the page.

World Economic Forum infiltraitor Jacinda Ardern of New Zealand gets caught snorting blow on camera, thanks to Wittgenstein on Twitter via 2SG on Substack

Turfseer, the king of artsy protest anthems, has a not-so-secret second life as film composer and dramatist. Here’s his cruelly funny, cynical Twilight Zone parody, – Nightmare at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. Will the rebel army make it to the underground bunkers where President Fauci is hiding out with Zuck and Gates? And whose side is that mysterious BLM protestor really on? There’s a surprise ending to this 21-minute video with a good original score

Reliably wide-ranging, inspiring freedom fighter, author and podcaster Bretigne Shaffer gives us a free pdf of her metaphorically savage short story Elixir of Fear.

Need a break from this relentless darkness? Crank up pianist/singer Maria Mendes‘ lavish, symphonic new big band jazz single Hermeto’s Fado for Maria, by the iconic Brazilian composer Hermeto Pascoal. That goofy synth break midway through will crack you up

The MammalsIf You Could Hear Me Now is a front-porch protest song for our time. “The money’s in charge of the black coal barge and there’s no more fish to be fishing.” Thanks to investigative journalism legend Celia Farber for passing this along.

Jude Roberts sings his elegantly snarling ragtime-flavored protest song Fall On Your Sword, Dr. Fauci, “the world’s biggest industry whore” who puts his greedy fingers into every fucking pie.

Americana songstress Monica Taylor delivers Rescues, a down-home red dirt Oklahoma shuffle with banjo and dobro,

Let’s wind this up with a shot of raw adrenaline: Lara Hope & the Ark-Tones ripping their way through their ghoulabilly hit I Drink to Your Health, with a searing Eddie Rion guitar solo

More Savagely Funny Protest Songs, Plandemic Parodies and New Videos From Turfseer

In the spring of 2020, it didn’t take long for songwriter Lewis Papier to get wise to the plandemic. He was outraged – as more artists should have been. So he and a rotating cast of hired guns – who were no doubt overjoyed to play his savagely satirical, often ridiculously funny songs – worked steadily on a series of singles. Recording under the name Turfseer, he would eventually put them up at Soundcloud as a whole album, Scamdemic Songs, in the fall of 2021.

This blog discovered them through Mark Crispin Miller’s invaluable News From Underground feed this past February, when there were a grand total of 33 songs on the playlist. It has since grown to 44! What’s more, there’s a growing collection of videos at Turfseer’s youtube channel, which mysteriously has not been censored. There’s at least one seriously LOL moment in all of them. If you’re bummed out by the prospect of more restrictions and endless doom porn, do yourself a favor and clipgrab these gems before they disappear. Watching the playlist for the first time, there was already a Youtube lethal injection propaganda pop-up ad in place by the third video. Then it disappeared…but sure enough, it was back for the song 1984 Is Here.

As a songwriter, Papier has an erudite grasp on a ton of styles: ornate art-rock, classic country, Beatlesque pop and more. The first of the videos is the Trust the Science Rag. ‘”You must refute and persecute all those who disagree,” Papier insists, over a rollicking piano tune. The video is a particularly apt Fatty Arbuckle/Buster Keaton silent film edit.

Is that one of the Chinese “big whites” spraying an empty bedroom with nameless toxic dust in the video for the darkly orchestrated, ELO-tinged Church of the Pandemic Mind?

The Virus Is My God, a southwestern gothic spoof of Covid true believers, has an irresistibly funny faux spaghetti western plotline: the devil is in the details!

The juxtaposition of the Salem Witch Trials and plandemic imagery in 1692 Was a Very Good Year, another ELO-esque gem, is spot-on. Sheeple University is a doctrinaire, churchy faux-Christian pop parody of wokester extremism: “Learn to bully, throw a fit, just obey and submit.”

The Commandant is one of the most chilling of the big art-rock numbers, with visuals to match: “We invented a monster that you’ll never see, how do you like that you’ll never be free?” O Holy Roman, another art-rock anthem, is just as metaphorically loaded. Turfseer’s insight into historical basis of plandemic brainwashing runs deep, underscored by the eerie folk-pop of The Ballad of Typhoid Mary.

Just Too Good to Be True, a country song, reflects the wave of deaths that followed the 2021 kill shot rollout. Another one from this past summer, You Didn’t Recognize Me, is a gorgeously bittersweet Amy Rigby soundalike, but with one of the most sinister undercurrents in the playlist

The most inspiring number on the original playlist, Forever Freedom Brigade, pops up in the middle of the videos. The Emperor’s New Clothes reflects the despondency that swept over the world before the freedom movement started growing toward critical mass.

Once in awhile Turfseer’s parody extends to music as well, as with the operatic spoof Vaccine, My Love; One Trick Pony, where he makes fun of lite FM piano pop; and In Toba Tek Singh, a searing Bollywood tale of the ravages of plandemic-induced poverty. The musicianship is strong all the way through: once in awhile there’s a sizzling solo, like the big guitar break in My Way Or the Highway Disease.

The playlist ends – at least at this point – on an optimistic note with a country song, Dawn of a New Day. And that, folks, is today’s installment of this month’s ongoing, daily Halloween celebration, which continues through the end of October. There will be more of the macabre, or at least something like it, here tomorrow.

Lara Hope & the Ark-Tones Bring Their Irreverent Retro Rock to the East Village

Lara Hope & the Ark-Tones are connoisseurs of retro Americana sounds, from rockabilly to 60s soul music. They’re playing Otto’s on Sept 24 at 10 PM; for those who might say, “Eww, the East Village on a Saturday night,” keep in mind that so many of the touristy types who made the neighborhood a place to avoid on the weekend have left town.

Out of all the albums Hope and the band have put out over the years, the very best of them all might be their snarky, irreverent Songs in the Key of Quarantine, streaming at Bandcamp. The core of the band, singer/guitarist Hope and her bassist husband Matthew Goldpaugh put this spot-on, satirical ep out during the darkest months of 2020 with a little help from their bandmates.

The first track is Social Distancing Blues:

Can’t give no one a hug
Can’t hold my baby tight
You got to wear a hazmat suit to get into a fight

And it gets better from there.

Bad Time to Quit Drinking is a grimly funny tune: the gist of it is that there are other things you can do to get high. No Time to Get Bored is a shuffle where Lara chronicles all the goofy things you can do when you’re been put under house arrest by a totalitarian regime.

She shows off some snarling gutter blues guitar chops on You Are Essential, a duet with her husband where they send a grateful shout out to the retail and healthcare workers who kept the economy going when many of the rest of us were depersoned during the endless, bleak days of 2020.

She drops her guard for the sad, spare, plainspoken acoustic soul ballad When Will I See My Grandma Again? Then she picks up the pace with Go Big & Stay Home, a scruffy number which seems a lot more cynical than optimistic. The last song on the album is a cover and it’s not very good – and it’s by a corporate rock guy with blood on his hands. He made his drummer take the lethal Covid injection early during the band’s 2021 tour, and the drummer died after one of the first shows.

The band’s latest album is Here to Tell The Tale, a full-band record also up at Bandcamp, which came out last year. Lead guitarist Eddie Rion and drummer Jeremy Boniello scramble through a catchy, diverse mix that starts with a simmering ghoulabilly tune, then dips into smoky go-go sounds, vintage Loretta Lynn style C&W and jump blues.

The last time this blog was in the house at one of the band’s shows, it was in 2018 at an Amsterdam Avenue bar which had neither stage nor PA system. Running everything through their amps, the band managed to keep a noisy neighborhood crowd at this onetime dive under control, no small achievement.

September Singles For a World Waking Up

Today’s mashup includes news, protest songs, videos and ridiculously funny memes. As usual, click on artist or author names for their webpages, click on titles for audio, video, a piece of history or just a good joke.

Let’s start this slowly with Fiona Apple‘s Pale September: it’s her Gloomy Sunday.

But all hope is not lost! Here’s the irreplaceable Steve Kirsch‘s four-minute voicemail to the CDC regarding the underreporting factor in the VAERS vaccine-death and vaccine-injury database. Steve – the MIT-educated author and scientist who has written over 700 articles on the subject – says the multiplier is 41, which has been confirmed by multiple studies. Download and share!

Here’s Van Morrison and Eric Clapton doing their single Rebels, via the other New York daily music source, Mark Crispin Miller’s must-read News From Underground. “Where have all the rebels gone….hiding behind a computer screen?” Clapton’s fast fingers on the frets are back: good to see that the disabling effects of the Astra-Zeneca shot didn’t ruin his career.

Also on the page: Progress, by John Rich, a defiant anti-WEF country waltz: “You can have back your freedoms if you do what we say…stick your progress where the sun don’t shine.”

Anti-globalist metal valkyries Varsiana Foka hail from the Donbass, the Russian-speaking region which has been under fire since the 2014 color revolution in Ukraine. Their latest single is Donbass Is Behind Us (with English subtitles)

The most priceless send-off to Dr. Faulty for his scheduled departure so far is from Merienne Jensen, via El Gato Malo

And here’s the only interview Dr. Faulty wouldn’t do, via the woman who wanted to do it, Emerald Robinson

Tucker Carlson also has some gleefully venomous commentary on the Dr. Faulty departure : the first couple of minutes are a laugh riot

RFK Jr. weighed in on the matter with his usual gravitas: “The omerta is collapsing!” via Celia Farber

Dr. Pam Popper, author of the very first plandemic expose, COVID Operation, says let’s not get too comfortable with the new CDC “guidance.” “Two and a half years ago, the rallying cry was freedom. Now we want justice.”

With the latest developments in the ugly ongoing story of how the Covid shots ravage the female body, Daily Clout maven Naomi Wolf explains the grisly images of a placenta in the womb, overgrown with a spiderweb of accumulated spike protein. “The FDA, the CDC knew, and this image shows you that the lipid nanoparticles are designed to cross the blood-brain barrier, they are designed to get into the placenta.” Start the video at 2:45. For an excellent, succinct review of the backstory – birthrates dropping around the world, an explosion in neonatal deaths and ongoing research on prenatal birth defects – Etana Hecht offers a concise analysis with links.

Let’s end this with some comic relief. Artist Anne Gibbons’ weekly meme is Tedros the chef

And here’s the Sad World/Mad World phone addiction video, via Fran Leader. The song isn’t very good but the video is.

Picturesque Americana Singer Hope DeBates Brings Her Songs Back to a Familiar Williamsburg Haunt

Singer Hope DeBates has been a fixture of the New York Americana scene since the zeros, when it was arguably as popular here as hip-hop or reggaeton. She calls her music “high plains country,” drawing on her childhood in the Black Hills of South Dakota. These days, C&W is harder than ever to find on a New York stage, but DeBates didn’t let the lockdown stop her and has picked up where she left off when the World Economic Forum and BlackRock turned this city into a fascist prison camp in March of 2020. Her next gig with her band North 40, a rotating cast of characters, is on August 28 at 4 PM at Skinny Dennis.

DeBates’ album Moody Country is streaming at her music page. On one hand, it’s a throwback to brooding, often haunting countrypolitan artists like Skeeter Davis. On the other, DeBates can be hilarious. She sings in a nuanced, carefully modulated delivery, beginning with the death-fixated opening track, Leaves Bright Yellow. It’s a grimly vivid, aphoristic midtempo shuffle about somebody who couldn’t pull their act together until it was too late.

The first of the two covers on the record is a wafting, atmospheric cover of Willie Nelson’s Satisfied Mind. Then DeBates reinvents Tom Petty’s Breakdown as a lurid Peggy Lee-style slow drag.

Perfectly Imperfect is a funny, oldtimey-flavored swing tune with a glockenspiel: “You’re not that nice a fella, what makes you think you deserve Snow White and Cinderella?” DeBates wants to know. The last song on the record, Pink and Mean is a Dusty Springfield-style Memphis soul song and is even funnier, a meticulously detailed dis aimed at a first-class bitch.

She also has a video for the slow, thoughtful ballad Champagne and Cowboys: it’s an old story, how wide open spaces and Hollywood hills don’t mix, and DeBates tells it poignantly. She recorded it at a darkened bar, so it’s hard to tell for sure, but it might have been at Bar Chord in Ditmas Park where she held down a monthly residency for awhile. That was where this blog last caught up with her, on a noisy evening in 2015, where she was tucked into the front window with her band and taking everybody back in time to a heartbreak saloon of the mind circa fifty years earlier. With DeBates, there’s no arguing that she owns her retro style.

Northern Noir Band the Sadies Leave Us With What Could Be The Best Album of 2022

Guitarist Dallas Good said that his band the Sadies‘ new album Colder Streams was the best record they’d ever made. They began recording it in 2019. Good and his bandmates had to sneak across provincial borders during the tyrannical Canadian lockdown to finally finish it in the summer of 2021. Too bad he didn’t live to see it. The lethal Covid injection killed him at 49 this past February.

The Sadies put out a ton of good albums, both under their own name as well as backing Neko Case. They started out in Americana, somewhere between Nashville gothic and punkgrass and by the time they wrapped up this one – streaming at Bandcamp – they’d gone in a more electric, psychedelic direction. Dallas Good was right: this is the Sadies best record. More than that, it’s a potent, metaphorically chilling historical document and arguably the best rock album of 2022.

The opening track, Stop and Start perfectly capsulizes the band’s sound in their final days: dense, reverb-drenched layers of jangle, clang, swirl and occasional scream from the Good brothers’ guitars over the precise, swinging groove of bassist Sean Dean and drummer Mike Belitsky. It may or may not be a lockdown parable – either way, it offers guarded hope for a new future:

The sickness comes like a rising sun
Now your war is done, what have you become?
Are you too far down to stop right now?
You can start right now
Stop and start right now

Is it a surprise that the next track – released as a single this past winter – would be titled Message to Belial? “The dark of all ages has come,” the band harmonize somberly over a spiky thicket of reverb guitar.in this parable of a less than sympathetic devil.

Dallas Good’s lingering, twangy lines resonate over his brother Travis’ layers of distantly Beatlesque acoustic rhythm in More Alone, an increasingly angst-fueled elegy for both people and places gone forever:

In this day and age
Rage has become all the rage
We choose to behave
Like wolves left to starve in a cage
We keep going in circles around around
Spinning faster and faster and faster
Go round in the end and then start back down again
Looking forward to another disaster

So Far For So Few is a bouncy mashup of bluegrass and Flamin’ Groovies janglerock, growing more psychedelic and enveloping on the wings of Dallas’ soaring lead lines.

Fueled by stark banjo and some intricate guitar flatpicking, All the Good – with the brothers’ mom and dad Margaret and Bruce Good on harmony vocals and autoharp, respectively – is a throwback to the band’s more acoustic late 90s sound.

Jon Spencer guests on fuzz guitar on No One’s Listening, a scorching update on ominous 60s Laurel Canyon psych-folk: “What you don’t know can’t hurt you anymore,” is the crushingly ironic key to the song. You Should Be Worried, a gorgeously resonant open-tuned front-porch folk tune, has even darker foreshadowing: “I’m not worried about you, you should be worried about me,” the band harmonize.

They go back to scampering reverb-plated garage-psych rock in Better Yet, with a tantalizingly blistering acoustic/electric guitar duel. Then they turbocharge the Nashville gothic with silvery sheets of reverb guitar in Cut Up High and Dry before taking a brief, surreal detour into dub.

They keep the scampering drive going through Ginger Moon, with what’s arguably Dallas’ most savage solo here. In an eerie stroke of fate, the final cut is titled End Credits, an intricately layered, Morricone-esque southwestern gothic instrumental. How tragic to see such a great band go out at the top of their game.

A Harrowing Solo Comeback Album and a Rare New York Show by Cult Icon Nina Nastasia

For about a decade beginning in the late 90s, songwriter Nina Nastasia earned a devoted following for her frequently haunting, painterly work. It’s hard to think of another artist who so perceptively captured the details in the darkness beneath the bustle in gritty New York neighborhoods which became artistic meccas before they were crushed in a blitzkrieg of gentrification.

The city’s decline mirrored Nastasia’s own. By 2010, her performing career had pretty much stalled. As Nastasia tells it, she and her longtime partner Kennan Gudjonsson sequestered themselves a tiny Chelsea apartment, caught up in a cycle of abuse and codependence. The day after Nastasia finally moved out, in January 2020, Gudjonsson killed himself.

In the first few months of the lockdown, Nastasia was able to process what by all accounts must have been inconceivable pain, and the result is a harrowing solo vinyl record, Riderless Horse, streaming at Bandcamp. She’s playing what could be her first Williamsburg show in at least fifteen years at Union Pool on August 20 at 7 PM for $20

It’s been a dozen years since Nastasia released an album, but she’s emerged a stronger singer than ever. Meanwhile, her songwriting has taken a detour into Americana. With her usual black humor, she opens with the sound of a cork popping: this will not exactly be a party, but it’s impossible to turn away from.

The album’s first song is Just Stay in Bed, a spare Tex-Mex flavored tune in 6/8. Just when it sounds like it’s going to turn into a fond love song, Nastasia’s voice grows menacing. Clearly this was a dysfunctional relationship on both sides.

Her vocals rise to fiery accusatory levels over steady strumming in the second track, You Were So Mad, a stoic breakup ballad: “You set a blaze inside our house, you set a blaze and smoked us out.” This Is Love is a subdued heartland rock anthem, a chronicle of “taking turns to follow and lead into the dissonance.”

The narrative grows uglier over Nastasia’s enigmatic fingerpicking in Nature, a plainspoken portrait of violence, and how easy it is to become habituated to it. This dynamic will resonate intensely through the rest of the record.

Nastasia switches to waltz time for Lazy Road, although even in this bucolic calm, death is lurking nearby. She revisits that atmosphere a little later with the bluegrass-tinged Blind As Batsies.

“I keep you alive as best as I can do,” Nastasia sings imploringly, but ultimately “to choose life over illness and leave,” in another waltz, Ask Me. She switches back to a muted Americana sway in the ironically titled The Two of Us, which wouldn’t be out of place on an Amy Rigby record from the 90s:

The simmering rage returns in Go Away: “There’s only one way to for me to give you peace, for me to leave: bury me,” Nastasia taunts. She follows with The Roundabout, an anguished request to bury the conflict under a blanket of denial.

The next track, Trust is the closest thing here to the stark sparkle that permeates Nastasia’s iconic early work. She sings to a ghost, in waltz time again, in Afterwards: “Love is tiresome when you’re older…it makes me wonder about the years that came before, and all the things I must ignore.” As a portrait of a relationship unraveling with catastrophic consequences, this ranks with Richard and Linda Thompson’s Shoot Out the Lights. Time may judge this a classic – just like Nastasia’s earlier albums, particularly The Blackened Air, her most bleakly orchestral release, from 2001.

Singles to Start Your Week With a Smile…and a Mystery Song

OK, maybe with a snarky smile. If you know this blog, you know the drill. Memes to make you laugh, then a self-guided playlist, then maybe something serious to keep us grounded. Click on artist names for their webpages, click on titles for audio and/or visuals. About 25 minutes worth of tunes. Make sure you use a browser like Brave to block the ads at the youtube videos.

Who says the future is so scary? Fran Leader, one of the leaders of the UK anti-fracking movement, shares a vision of “the good reset” – in case you’re wondering, the punchline is at the bottom.

Is it Halloween already?” via El Gato Malo.

Artist Anne Gibbons has a good reason why all pregnant women should join the “rat race” to the DNA-altering Covid injection!

One of the few New York bands who date back to the late zeros and are still going strong, Changing Modes have a new video for Days, a characteristically acerbic, shapeshifting anthem: “These are the days I never spent with you.”

Does anybody recognize this song? If you know the answer, hit the comment button at the bottom of the page. Thanks! It’s a gorgeous orchestral arrangement of an old Hasidic nigun. Via Brooklyn’s #1 freedom fighter Brucha Weisberger, chronicling the ongoing holocaust in Israel.

“If the evidence points back, then why would they screen it?” Lula Wiles‘ frontwoman Mali Obomsawin asks in Television, the Boston band’s swaying psych-folk takedown of corporate media duplicity and false dichotomies.

Crone’s Abyss Road starts out like a peak-era 90s Versus-style downstroke anthem and goes back ten years to a heavier sound. Killer guitar solo!

Denial, by Onyria makes a good segue, a catchy, dystopic stadium rock stomp.

The devil is in the details in Mary Bragg‘s new single, Panorama, an allusive Crowded House-like haunter: “A real life diorama, to a starry-eyed pollyanna.”

Who would expect an oldschool 6/8 honkytonk ballad with a weird shoegaze interlude? But it works. Here’s Suzannah’s Losing Side of Town.

Finally, let’s get the word “philanthropath” into general circulation. Margaret Anna Alice, one of the great freedom fighters who sprang up in the wake of the 2020 totalitarian takeover, came up with that description for Gates, Soros, Bloomberg and the rest of the reptile oligarchs. She also shares the creepy depopulation scene from the late great Rik Mayall’s last film, One by One (scroll down)