Subterranean Homesick Alien

I wish that they’d swoop down in a country lane

Late at night when I’m driving

Take me on board their beautiful ship

Show me the world as I’d love to see it

Chris Thile

Time to step sideways from your typical progressive artist to bluegrass/mandolin stylist extraordinaire Chris Thile. Thanks goes to Gary Kramer for introducing me to Mr. Thile and his band, the Punch Brothers, doing Radiohead covers. Thile’s crooning and enigmatic voice, his creativity, and the spot-on timing of his band are a natural fit for Radiohead tunes – or they make it seem natural. Here’s ‘Faust Arp’ and ‘2+2=5’:

And you can’t go wrong playing some Punch Brothers on a summer afternoon with a big pitcher of margarita’s. Here he is with Michael Daves live at NPR Music’s Tiny Desk Concert last June:

Great Albums For a Rainy Day

It’s a cool, rainy, overcast day in St. Louis today after a week of temps in the 80’s.  Here are a few albums I like to throw on for days like this one:

Wish You Were Here – Pink Floyd

Young Team – Mogwai

Dummy – Portishead

Classic Yes – Yes

Coma Divine – Porcupine Tree

Start with Kid A – Radiohead:

OMG a New Radiohead Song – Staircase!

Hopefully you recognize I’m being a little over the top in the title, but still, I like the new song and love most of their ‘In the Basement’ recordings.  Not sure what crazy Radiohead forum I was in to give credit, but I ran across a post for a great Radiohead playlist combining ‘OK Computer’ and ‘In Rainbows’.  Start with Airbag and then alternate tracks between the albums with the exception that ‘Fitter Happier’ follows directly after ‘Karma Police’. The prevailing theory on the forum was that the two albums, published exactly ten years apart, were actually purposefully made to be played together.  In any case it flows perfectly.

In other music I saw Robert Plant on his Band of Joy Tour at the Fox last Thursday.  The wife snagged some front row (past the orchestra pit) ticket goodness for us and we thoroughly enjoyed the show. The Fox remains the best place to see a concert in St. Louis, short of Robert and the gang showing up in my basement.  And just a warning; they pour a mean Jack & Coke at the bar but they add up fast to the ‘I could have had a really nice steak somewhere’ level. The latest album, Band of Joy, is pretty good in my opinion and I realized after hearing ‘House of Cards’ live that the whole album seems meant to be heard live rather than from a studio album.  And we all know why most people go to see Robert Plant in concert and they didn’t disappoint. Every other song was a Zeppelin cover and did not fail to get the crowd on their feet each time.  The only complaint I have is that the set seemed very short but I wasn’t keeping track of the time (or was unable to keep track of time, I should say) and could have gone another 30 minutes.  I can only imagine how bad my two day hangover would have been with more time to order another Jack & Coke though.

Robert Plant & the Band of Joy

Robert Plant & the Band of Joy at the Fox