RIAA, meet RICO

Finally, FINALLY we’re starting to treat the RIAA like an organized crime syndicate. Check the latest on a RICO class-action in Missouri, via Slashdot:

“In Atlantic Recording v. Raleigh, an RIAA case pending in St. Louis, Missouri, the defendant has asserted detailed counterclaims against the RIAA for federal RICO violations, fraud, violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, prima facie tort, trespass, and conspiracy. The claims focus on the RIAA’s ‘driftnet’ tactic of suing innocent people, and of demanding extortionate settlements. The RICO ‘predicate acts’ alleged in the 42-page pleading (PDF) are extortion, mail fraud, and wire fraud.

This is a wonderful approach. Continue reading

Are The Killers the greatest band in the world? We find out today…

A lot of bands have released pretty good debut records, only to follow them up with less-than-spectacular careers. The rule used to be (before the FCC, the recording industry and the radio industry conspired to destroy all music) that you learned what you needed to know about a band with its third album. Given how things worked, you often saw a pattern that looked something like this:

  • Debut: Band (or solo artist) has been on the road for awhile, writing and building an audience and developing as a creative and performing force. Continue reading

Okay, I admit it: I love ELO

I know that a lot of purists out there will think much less of me when I say that one of my favorite bands of all time is the Electric Light Orchestra. My fondness for the band probably stems from its ubiquity on the jukebox at the Round Table pizza on Blossom Hill Road in San Jose, California, where my dad would take my sister and me rather frequently. I also distinctly remember hearing “Evil Woman” being played at, of all places, Frontier Village, a now defunct theme park that anyone who grew up in San Jose in the 1970s would remember with fondness.

As I got older, the whole ethos of ELO’s music – that jam-packed arrangements, the often lame lyrics, the Continue reading

A thankful year – more reviews also and as well

Well, Thanksgiving is upon us, and as we gather around our families and celebrate the decimation of a race of people, we need to think back on all the things we are thankful for this year. And with so much change in the air, I think it’s clear who will be on our minds this year. Yes, that charismatic leader who has captured so many hearts. Though some may be resistant to change, it’s clear that a change needed to occur. Of course, I’m talking about the new format of Best Week Ever, with Paul F. Tompkins leading the way. Thank you VH1 for being so brave. OK music time.

Brett Dennen – Hope For The Hopeless – *** – Continue reading

The best band you’re missing

If you havn’t checked out Mando Diao yet, now is the time to get on it. The band is just tying up the loose ends of their upcoming fifth album, and are finishing up their DVD documentary which includes their gig at The Troubadour in Los Angeles.

Continue reading

It’s a Three-for-All!

And now, a few eMusic Recommendifications for your consideration.

We’ll start with Jigsaw Days from The Well Wishers. This new release from Jeff Shelton (ex-Spinning Jennies) is among the top Power Pop releases of the year to date, and in addition to recalling artists like The Posies, Teenage Fanclub, Sloan, Supergrass and XTC, also has moments where it leans a bit heavier into the “Power” than the “Pop.” Like most bands working this genre, Shelton isn’t really looking to do anything new. But he’s doing a very good job cranking out earnest, tuneful guitar pop. Very cool, very recommended. Continue reading

Electing your musical futures…it’s that dumb reviewer guy again

Alright, now that the election is over and the world is saved by Barack, we will all be rich, war will be over, and all we’ll do all day is listen to music. So to get us ready for this Utopia, I present a few records that should be sampled by all. We’ll do a vote on these records, so send me your votes, and I will tally them up, and, as the sole electoral vote, I will choose who gets to win. Onward Democracy!

Built By Snow – MEGA – *** – Continue reading

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