We have something for everybody on this week's archive. Our opening track comes from Philly's Ron Gallo with a new and suitably loud and obnoxious title track called "Foreground Music". During the pandemic, Gallo put on an online music festival called "Really Nice Fest" and Ron also rocks the Arnold Horshack perm. If you like punk, we have the Damned, who follow up our opener with "Neat Neat Neat" from 1978. The first set end with my longtime favorite Dave Edmunds track, from his 1981 Twangin' album, "You'll Never Get Me Up (In One of Those)", featuring the late, lamented combo Rockpile, which Edmunds shared with Nick Lowe for their respective solo records.
Set 2 opens with a 2013 song by Ducktails, "Letter of Intent", which at once has an 80s pop / R&B and proto-Tame Impala feel. Actually I wish Tame Impala was this melodic. We go back to the mid-80s and Killing Joke, who with the relentless "Love Like Blood" took their post-punk sound in a decidedly goth direction with spooky synths and layers of guitars. A different kind of spooky is found on 1962's "Running Scared", a Roy Orbison mini-epic built around the fear of rejection. The quivering voice and orchestration bely the triumphant final line of the song. It took a unique form of confidence to sing in such a vulnerable way, only to hit impossibly high notes at the end. Roy is truly a rock pioneer who sounded like no one who came before him or since.
Our middle set features "THe Full Form" by London singer L.A. Salami, an Afro-British singer that is at once reminiscent of his contemporary Bakar, along with 70s R&B and a little bit of rap and electronica for good measure. The Australian Courtney Barnett follows with the wonderful "Rae Street" from her 2021 album Things Take Time Take Time, paraphrasing her Dad's fatherly advice into a description of a day in the neighborhood. The set ends with a piano-driven waltz from Liverpool England's Clean Cut Kid (featuring Pet Snake), with Wilson-Phillips style harmonies.
Set 4 features Donald Fagen's Karmakiriad-era "Florida Room" (cowritten with wife Libby Titus), a paean to every romantic Florida stereotype for hardened Northeasterners heading to their early-bird specials at the Boca Raton Red Lobster (or Rascal House, one of the more famous local South Florida deli-restaurants where the pickles are plentiful). We follow it with First Aid Kit, two sisters from Sweden who sound like they've just been harmonizing with Dolly Parton at the Ryman Auditorium, with the beautiful "Turning Onto You" from their latest album, Palomino. We fall back to 1968 with Buffalo Springfield's "Four Days Gone", this week's second waltz (we rarely play even one), written and sung by Stephen Stills and released at a time when the band was breaking up and he was up in Laurel Canyon practicing a new kind of harmonic folk-rock with old friend David Crosby and his new British pal Graham Nash.
Set 5 features two songs to wrap us up, a fun neo-girl-grunge tune by Seattle's Alex Vile called "Tiger" (a fresh take on the Breeders and Sleater-Kinney sound), and then a rare original by French dance DJs Ofenbach called "Be Mine", which combines a more relaxing dance beat with catchy guitar, piano, organ and vocals, sounding like fun rock and roll instead of the usual mind-numbing Euro dance beats. And all this music, folks, is guaranteed to inspire you or tire you out. Perhaps both.
This RKH archives are available at the link below as well as on iHeart, Apple, Google and other fine podcasts as well as on Amazon Music. Plus listen to our new shows as they happen every Wednesday at 10 pm ET on radiofairfax.org, TuneIn Radio (Radio Fairfax), and NoVA cable channels 37 (Cox/Fios) and 27 (Comcast).
POSTSCRIPT: We wished a fond goodbye to guitar savant Jeff Beck last week (he's featured on our next show). Unfortunately now we have to say farewell to David Crosby, who was simply a ringleader of the entire LA folk-rock sound, a master of harmonies and intricate phrasings with an amazing range, and a brutally honest personality who lived with and survived his own vices longer than anyone could have reasonably expected. We'll be featuring him soon as well.
Reddy J Kilowatt,
Your Rock and Roll Servant
10:00 PM | Ron Gallo | Foreground Music 10:04 PM | The Damned | Neat Neat Neat 10:06 PM | Dave Edmunds | You'll Never Get Me up (In One of Those) 10:12 PM | Ducktails | Letter of Intent 10:15 PM | Killing Joke | Love Like Blood 10:20 PM | Roy Orbi...