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The Big Takeover #84
Essays
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Damien Lovelock

Damien Lovelock 1954- 2019

18 August 2019

On August 3, Australian music lost one of its most loved figures, in Damien Lovelock, vocalist for the iconic Celibate Rifles.

Orchestra Of Distortion - My Bloody Valentine's Loveless

17 August 2019

This week writer Kevin Burke looks into the heart of My Bloody Valentine’s sublime classic Loveless

Running The Voodoo Down - Miles Davis & Bitches Brew

10 August 2019

This week, writer Kevin Burke reflects and discusses the importance of the Miles Davis masterwork Bitches Brew.

The Sixties Cease To Exist | The Beach Boy, The Beatles And The Beast

3 August 2019

Writer Kevin Burke looks back fifty-years and discusses the connection between Dennis Wilson, The Beatles and convicted murderer Charles Manson

What’s Going On? -There’s A Riot Goin’ On!

27 July 2019

Writer Kevin Burke discusses the connection between two of the most remarkable musical statements of the 20th Century.

Inciting The Riot Grrrl - Five Women Who Inspired A Movement

20 July 2019

Kim Deal, Kristin Hersh, Vanessa Briscoe Hay, Kim Gordon and Kat Bjelland, five women who inspired the sound of Riot Grrrl.

Nico - New York’s Gothic Princess

12 July 2019

On July 15th 1988, the world mourned the loss of Nico, the true gothic princess,

Light Years From Home - The Last Testament Of Brian Jones

6 July 2019

Fifty years after the death of Brian Jones, Kevin Burke looks back at the last surge of brilliance from the original Rolling Stone

David Bowie - The Man Who Sold The Future

29 June 2019

Kevin Burke shares his opinion on David Bowie’s game changing album The Man Who Sold The World

The Funk Bible - Prince’s Black Album Explained

22 June 2019

Following the release of the posthumous Originals, Kevin Burke looks back at the unreleased album by Prince that became a cult all of its own.

Ambient Punk - Lou Reed’s Metal Machine Music Explained

14 June 2019

Kevin Burke tries to make sense of the Lou Reed album Metal Machine Music

Silhouettes and Statues: A Gothic Revolution

Silhouettes & Statues: A Gothic Revolution – 1978 -1986

10 July 2017

Cherry Red Record’s 5-disc box set Silhouettes & Statues encompasses the Gothic revolution of the late ’70s to mid-‘80s, capturing the spirit of an essential era in (musical) history.

To Whitney- A Thank You

29 October 2016

A review and some thoughts on Chicago outfit, Whitney.

John “Stabb” Schroeder: In His Own Words

29 September 2016

I had formed this band to make everyone in the world suffer for the hell I’d endured back in high school, so this was the perfect setting to unleash my anger.

RIP John Stabb

8 May 2016
I can’t believe that I’ll never see him at a show (or anywhere else) again, at least on this planet. I hope his soul is at peace. My heart goes out to his widow Mina. There will never be another one like him. Here’s to another one gone from us way too soon, this time at the tender age of 54. RIP John Stabb.

Laugh Through The Evening

19 April 2016

Two very short stories: more sludgy rumination on my salad days. 25 years ago today, nerds from New Jersey spent the night wandering around New York City and I check out CBGB for the first time. Then I recount the first time I got onto the radio.

How To Not Interview Dangerous Birds

5 April 2016

I tried to interview an old Boston band called Dangerous Birds and became thwarted by sinister powers of cunning and treachery. Then a crusty librarian handed me an old photo of a shoe collection from the Korean Airline Disaster of 1983 and their whole lie unraveled, along with my interview.

The First Time I Heard Punk Rock and Hardcore

22 January 2016

I thought about the Dead Kennedys as I sat silently on the bus. I couldn’t understand a single word the singer was saying, it all just sounded like incoherent babble. He sounded like some kind of depraved nerd. At the end of the day, I shook my head in disbelief about punk rock.

Come Flyer With Me: A rant about DIY advertising, money, art, Facebook and dissapearing public spaces in Denver

25 September 2014

Come Flyer With Me: A rant about DIY advertising, money, art, Facebook and dissapearing public spaces in Denver. Recently I was handing out flyers in downtown Denver and a funny thing happened. Almost everywhere I went, I was asked to leave.

Accidental Protégé – An Attempt To Clear The Confusion Over Death In June and Douglas Pearce

26 November 2013

Death In June have been called everything from Nazi-sympathizers according critics to staunch liberals coming from their fans. In reality, the answer is lodged somewhere between the two extremes.

A Tale of Two Record Stores

18 June 2013

A brief essay on music sales. Recently I went into two record stores in Denver and had drastically different experiences. It seems that in the wake of the economic downtown, independent music stores and corporate chains have a much different philosophy on their customers and what those customers want.

This Music: Pieces on Heavy Metal, Punk Rock & Hardcore by Lewis Dimmick

8 May 2013

Remember what it was like to be the youngest person at a show, surrounded by people three times your age? With all of those strange tattooed people with their smelly dreadlocks? Lewis Dimmick hasn’t forgotten what that time period was like, and in this book he explores some of his earliest memories of participating in DIY music.

The Feuerzeig Video Covers Project: “Lisa Says” (Velvet Underground, Live, 1969 Version)

7 May 2013

Recently, the filmmaker Jeff Feuerzeig (Half Japanese/The Duded) decided to document some originals & cover songs I have been performing on an acoustic piano in a 1983, ford Econoline. It’s given me an opportunity to turn people on to a version of a Velvet Underground song that tends to get lost in the shuffle.

WGTB Benefit Show: Rites of Spring, Dag Nasty, Embrace and Beefeater

26 April 2013

Audio and commentary from a WGTB Benefit Show held in Washington DC on December 4th 1985, featuring Rites of Spring, Dag Nasty, Embrace and Beefeater.

Sabbath_Header

Black Sabbath - The Lost Acetates and Early Recordings

23 March 2013

In 2003 an anonymous person uploaded the earliest known recordings of Black Sabbath to a file sharing website. The songs, “The Rebel” and “When I Came Down” quickly spread around the Internet. Both of the songs reveal a young and wildly kinetic Black Sabbath. Both are still technically unreleased.

New Rules For Sound Guys

11 March 2013

I’m sure you know that feeling of being totally excited for a show, and then being swiftly disappointed because of just how terribly the sound is handled. Perhaps, it’s because the venue just isn’t that great, but more often than not it’s simply because of the sound guy.

Charlie Chaplin Is Such A Hipster

22 February 2013

Easily the most dangerous contaminant in music journalism today, after sexism, is some need writers have to single out a band with an attention span as short as their own album reviews.

Calvin Johnson Is Totes Adorkable, You Guys

20 February 2013

Can music writers just stop using words like “cute,” “adorable,” or “twee,” to describe a band’s sound already?

When the Sun Hits mourns Danny Lackey

In Memory of Danny Lackey, Co-Founder of When the Sun Hits Blog

5 February 2013

He had the ability to touch the hearts of people all over the world, simply by being himself. He loved deeply both beauty and music; his passion was experiencing both of those simultaneously, whether he was making the music or listening to it.

Laura Jane Grace

Hyper Masculinity in the Punk Scene and the Bravery of Laura Jane Grace

14 May 2012

Tom Gabel announces transition to new identity as Laura Jane Grace

Trying To Stop The Internet (Good Luck!)

9 March 2012

Commit internet piracy 3x and you are banned from the internet

Save KUSF

Open Letter To President Privett on The Sale of KUSF by The University of San Francisco

23 January 2011

The sale of KUSF is neither popular nor moral, but rather another cave-in to the trickle-down supply-side economics that crassly support an anti-humanist and anti-religious notion of “science and innovation” at the expense of the liberal arts. Ultimately, it’s not even a sound economic decision for you or the University.

The (Hopefully) Last Exploitation Of Michael Jackson

15 November 2010

On December 14th, Epic Records will be releasing Michael, a collection of 10 songs that had to have been unfinished at the time of the King Of Pop’s death. This is a clear case of “can we” versus “should we”.

Happy New Year

30 January 2010

The song begins, to clapped hands, “Happy new year / my dear / it is time to face our fear”. That’s the line I kept singing, like a mantra. It’s a good alternate New Year’s theme, I think – welcome to a new, fearless year.

Jack Rose, 1971-2009

7 December 2009

Jack, you left this world far too early.

Found Music in Newfoundland

4 September 2009

A trip up north goes far in introducing new music.

Telepathe: A Different Sort of Minimal Synth

5 August 2009

A colorful Brooklyn duo with equal parts hip hop and synthpop apparent in their spartan beats are still very much of the moniker, ‘minimal synth’.

Her Virgins

10 July 2009

For an ambitious, up-and-coming outfit, New York City’s Her Virgins are a typical anomaly, fusing dark pop with a glam aesthetic that runs the gamut from Clockwork Orange to rivethead chic.

Remembering the Greatest Speech in Baseball History

4 July 2009

“Fans, for the past two weeks you have been reading about the bad break I got. Yet today I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of this earth.”

Slanted & Enchanted: Not The Album But The Book(Exclusive Video Interview with author Kaya Oakes))

10 June 2009

So Slanted & Enchanted is not exactly “A tragedy of epic proportions!” More of a problem comedy—too realistic to offer the patriarchal cathartic moneyshot. Or, as Kathleen Hanna puts the wait for the Next Big Indie Thing—“It’s almost like this pregnancy where the baby never gets born. I feel like it’s been as if ‘The baby’s coming! The baby’s coming! And it’s five years later. And the woman weights three hundred pounds…and is not having the kid.”

SanFran Music Tech Summit (May 18, 2009)

22 May 2009

There’s a growing movement to re-establish connections between the fractalized digital technology and the already established local music scenes. There’s many more money making opportunities if these connections are seen more clearly as a two-way street, especially as the recording and distribution industries have made severe cuts in their ‘regional offices’ (or more autonomous locally-run subsidiaries) in recent years.

Three SF Bay Area Radio DeeJays

1 May 2009

I think once having the internet in your car is a normal thing, FM stations will suffer heavily, escpeially if commercial free stations such as Soma FM still exist. I’m pretty sure that college stations will continue to broadcast on line and perhaps having these online station options available in cars will finally pull some of the stranglehold away from Clearchannel….Who knows, it might be just what the music industry needs to recover from this current dire situation it has fallen into.” (Elise Nordling)

The Unheard Recordings by San Francisco's Bomb

5 April 2009

Frontman/bassist Michael W. Dean has made Bomb’s rarest recordings available for free from Bomb’s official website.

Automelodi

4 April 2009

Montreal’s Xavier Paradis may have the French connection, but is actually a forerunner in the distinctly North American movement of minimal synth that has been seething below the surface since the 1990’s.

Food, Inc. (PG)

1 April 2009

Food, Inc. is powerful enough to be to the local/organic/sustainable food movement what An Inconvenient Truth was to concern about global warming.

Something Wicked This Way Comes: New York City’s New Dark Sisterhood

23 March 2009

Destiny, Tamaryn, Zohra, Anastasia: New York City’s rising coven of seductive sirens, ladies of the new church of post-apocalyptic song.

Gold Among the Blogs Part 2: The Cows, The Dicks and Vom

22 March 2009

Joe Stumble’s Last Days of Man on Earth blog contains some real treasures while retaining a respect for the artists and their music.

Happy Birthday Charles Gayle

28 February 2009

Here are six of my favorite Gayle albums. Most are imports, out of print, poorly distributed, or combinations of those states, but a look at Amazon shows that they can be found.

Gold Among the Blogs Part 1: SGM's Aggression

20 January 2009

After 18 years, I’ve finally found the album that changed my concept of music forever.