THE FIXX – October 19,2021 Paramount Theatre, Austin, TX

The Fixx were supposed to have the English Beat as their opening band, but they decided that covid was still too bad to go out on tour, and their drummer just passed away before they were supposed to go on the road, so Fastball got the opening slot.


I have never been a fan of Fastball, never liked the song “The Way”, but I was pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed their set. Very well played, and has some great songs, with nice humor and crowd interaction, but I still don’t like “The Way”…lol.The intermission was relatively short, and then The Fixx hit the stage and put on a fantastic show with so many great songs that had the crowd singing along and dancing. I have been a fan since 1982, and have never seen them before, and they did not disappoint at all. Cy Curnin had a great theatrical style that suited the songs and you can tell that he was having a great time, especially finally being able to get back on the road again. I was amazed at how proficient they were and made the songs sound like the albums, but still adding enough to give them a nice spin that added to the song. The venue was just the right size to really feel connected to the band and you could really feel the raw energy that The Fixx created.


All-in-all, this was a fantastic evening, and one of the best concerts that I have ever been to. Cy Curnin’s voice was amazing, carrying notes that you would have thought were long gone because of time going on like a lot of other singers. The whole band is tight and probably a little to cerebral with their lyrics for the carts, which could have caused them to fall out of favor on the charts, but they still have a lot of great songs, thoughtful lyrics, and talent that many others wish they had.



MOTORHEAD – No Sleep ‘Til Hammersmith Expanded 40th Anniversary Edition

The arguably, best live album of all-time has been remastered and expanded with five bonus tracks on the first disc (three of which are previously unreleased from a sound check) and features three previously unreleased full concerts from this tour: Leeds Queen Hall (28/3/81) and both nights from Newcastle City Hall (29 & 30 March). The box set includes 28-page book, poster, plectrum, tour pass, ticket, flyer & badge.

So here we have an album that as soon as I saw the advertisement in CREEM magazine for it, I wanted it…badly. It took me a lot longer than I wanted it to for me to get the album, but man, was it worth it! It was and is amazing all the way through from start to end. The sound of the remaster has improved the clarity and power of this terrific album. The three previously unreleased full concerts from this tour are just as amazing and could have been released to acclaim back then. The shows are blistering and it sounds like Lemmy’s throat is being ripped out, but back then, this band was unstoppable and Lemmy would take no prisoners. No matter how many live albums Motorhead has put out, nothing will beat this for pure destruction. My brother was listening to the radio during this time and the station had a Motorhead show live on the radio, and on TV at the same time in a simulcast and it blew me away, just like this collection does. The booklet with its pictures and information is great, and the other items are fantastic, a great addition to the package. A band at the height of their powers, playing like the world was ending and they had to make a final statement…it didn’t end, but what a statement they made. Thanks boys, ya done good.

MOTORHEAD – Ace of Spades (Box Set / Ltd Ed)

What we have here is the mammoth 40th anniversary release of one of the most iconic albums of all time, and arguably, the best Motorhead album, Ace of Spades. The thought that this would be as amazing of a collection is hard to fathom, but it truly is a work of art.

You get the Ace Of Spades album on vinyl, half-speed mastered and created from the original master tapes, two double-live albums of previously unheard concerts from the Ace Up Your Sleeve tour, a 10” EP of previously unreleased, instrumental tracks from 1980, a double album of B-sides, outtakes and rare tracks, a DVD compilation of rare TV appearances from 1980-81, a live concert from 1981 and a 5.1 audio mix of the original album, plus a 40 page book telling the story of Ace Of Spades through previously unpublished interviews with the people that were there, a reproduction Ace Up Your Sleeve tour program, a reproduction Motörhead Rock Commando comic, and a set of 5 poker dice that can be played on the game board inside the box set lid. Holy hell…what a collection of awesome!

Starting with the original album, you can hear the cleaned up, and louder sounding tracks that are now even more ear-blistering than before. You wouldn’t think that this would make a difference, but it truly has. The blood, sweat and tears that this band put into this album has never sounded this intense and will bring an extra head bang out of you. The two live albums are just a terrific addition to the set, with the new at the time songs, mixed with older tracks becoming head crushing and both hold up to the awesome No Sleep Till Hammersmith album. Although recorded on the same tour, they are both a welcome addition to the live collection of albums that they have recorded. The instrumental tracks and the B-sides, outtakes and rare tracks are a fantastic dip into some stuff that you might not have heard too much before and really show that they were trying to find some cool stuff to give the fans. Hearing Motorhead without vocals is a different experience and the addition of the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre EP is always great to have. The alternate takes of songs that you know so well are also very interesting to see where they started from and what the final mix became.

Jumping from the music, into the other items included is also a lot of fun. The DVD compilation of rare TV appearances from 1980-81, a live concert from 1981 and a 5.1 audio mix of the original album is a nice thing to include. The TV appearances are always a treat since you can tell they really were having a lot of fun doing them, and the concert is something that you will love to watch to be able to see the classic band all together and ripping the songs out. The 5.1 audio mix is also nice for those with that set up; it really immerses you into the inferno of the album.

The 40 page book telling the story of Ace Of Spades through previously unpublished interviews with the people that were there, a reproduction Ace Up Your Sleeve tour program, a reproduction Motörhead Rock Commando comic, and a set of 5 poker dice that can be played on the game board inside the box set lid are really cool and I devoured the book, finding out a lot that I didn’t already know. The tour program and comic were interesting to see since I never had these items in my collection before, and the dice and game are a great added bonus. I also really liked the cardboard replica bullet belt that wrapped around the box set…so cool!

With the band having all passed away, this is a fantastic way to remember them and enjoy an album that has held up and gotten better through the years. The only complaint is that I would have liked a download code for the music, but I’m still happy that this is out there; giving the fans something worthwhile from a band that is just as classic as this album. Long Live Motorhead!

PROUD CREATURE: Opening Creature EP

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Todd Brozman is a multi-instrumentalist and music producer with roots in piano. He started playing piano at age 6 after convincing his mother to buy him a little demo Casio at an electronics store. At Wesleyan University, Todd had a radio show which exposed him to a lot of new electronic music and he got more involved in creating new music, fusing electronics and improvisational jazz. Proud Creature is his solo musical project, presenting ethereal and otherworldly compositions informed by jazz, ambient, electronica and psychedelic music.

The EP is mostly down-tempo and ambient, which I can really appreciate with all the noise in the world. Put this one on and you are transported to another dimension, one with muted colors and weird sights to behold, all while this amazing soundtrack is playing and blowing your mind. The EP shows what he can do when left to his own devices and really gets the layering of many sounds to flow onto one another with such ease and skill that you will want to put the headphones on and be selfish and not let anyone else into your headspace while listening to this EP.

Song after song just gets into your head and makes you want to hit replay on this EP over and over again. For his first solo recordings being so good, I can’t wait to see what he will come up with next.



Luxembourg-based female-fronted alternative rock band Ptolemea has established themselves as a live act with a melancholic, dreamy twist. With a powerful voice, tight grooves and grungy riffs, the outfit delivers their newest EP, Maze.

It’s like the early to mid-90s never went away when you hit play on this EP. While not really being what I would call grunge, more like the glut of alternative bands that came in its wake. I really found myself likening this to Linda Perry’s singing style in 4 Non Blondes. There is a lot of energy in the playing and raw emotion in the vocals that carry this EP.  Priscila Da Costa has a great voice that hits you in the gut and sticks with you. The band is very accomplished and the total package works.

This is an album to throw on and sit in your backyard and have some drinks while cranking it up loud, or hitting the road with the windows down and feeling the breeze hit you in the face…just like this album does.

RAINER LANDFERMANN: Mein Wort in Deiner Dunkelheit

German vocalist and bass player Rainer Landfermann is known for his work with PAVOR, Bethlehem, and his own solo work. Featured on the album are ten dark and highly diverse songs that are pushing the boundaries of the extreme metal genre. You have dramatic low-frequency waves of bowed double basses, tenebrous choirs and somber jazz ballad parts harmoniously join blasting drums and grim avant-garde guitar riffs. The German album title translates to “My word in your darkness”. “The album is about introspection, self-awareness, and – ultimately – about beauty:” says Rainer Landfermann, “its experience, appreciation, and sometimes, the painful loss of it.”

Talk about something different! The vocals go from straight singing, growls to screaming that sounds like someone is being killed, and all in the space of every song. It kind of gets a bit much with it going on over and over again. Some parts remind me of Rammstein, some parts are pure noise, and some of it is just beautiful and sounds like something that you would find on a jazz album and some like on a horror movie. The album jumps all over the place and even has some of the jazz-punk of Black Flag in places…so much to take in and very unclassifiable. Yes, it is metal, but it is so much more too. The album is available both as download and as an elaborately designed limited art book edition, for which Rainer Landfermann teamed up with Russian ballet photographer Daria Chenikova and model Anna Grigoryan, a ballerina at the Stanislavsky Ballet in Moscow, who is also featured on the album cover. For each of the ten songs on the album, they created a gorgeous visualization of the theme and mood of the respective music and lyrics.

While not my cup of tea, this is an album that really takes chances and challenges the listener. I may not be a fan of most of this, but I can respect what he is doing and some of the music on here.


MATCHBOX: The Albums 1979-82

Matchbox was formed in Middlesex, in 1971 playing their rockabilly revival music and have been putting out albums and touring right up until the present. The band appeared in the 1980 film Blue Suede Shoes which detailed the revival of 1950s rock ‘n’ roll music scene at the time. Eventually, time and changing tastes meant the hits stopped coming and the various members went off to do other projects. Then, back in 1996, as the rockabilly and rock’n’roll scenes saw another surge of interest, these five guys got back together again to do a couple of shows, and now, the original band is back touring. This is a 65 track 4 CD box set rounding up all of the band’s recordings for Magnet Records between 1979 and 1982.

Being a lover of rockabilly and not owning any of their albums, this is a perfect way for me to get into the band with their original albums and go from there. They started off kicking and screaming right out of the gate with energy and a thrilling sound that will draw you in. Real rockabilly that quickens your heart and fills you with the desire to get up and dance. Disc one is their self-titled debut for the label which reached No. 44 in the UK chart. It contains the hit singles “Rockabilly Rebel” (No.18) and “Buzz Buzz A Diddle It’”(No.22) as well as the non-charting “Black Slacks.” These are great songs that show that they can write catchy songs that still sound great after all these years. The album now comes with four bonus tracks including two recorded under the name of Cyclone. The second disc is 1980’s Midnite Dynamos album which reached No.23 in the British charts. The title track gave the band a No.14 hit single and the album also includes the No.4 smash “When You Ask About Love.” This album continues the wild ride of the first album and you can see the band getting tighter and the writing getting better. The eight bonus cuts include the No.15 hit “Over The Rainbow/You Belong To Me” as well as two ultra-rare Japanese only singles, “I’m A Lover Man” and “Little Lonely Girl.” Disc 3 is the Flying Colours album which contained the hit singles “Babe’s In The Wood” (No.46) and “Love’s Made A Fool Of You” (No.63).  Buddy Holly’s “Love’s Made A Fool Of You” is a great cover that doesn’t mimic the original, they give it the respect it’s due, but make it their own, and then do the same to Holly’s “You’re The One.” Another winner of an album. The final disc is the 1982 LP Crossed Line, released here on CD for the first time. It features the No.63 hit single “One More Saturday Night” plus their collaboration with the late Kirsty MacColl on “I Want Out.” This album sees the band continuing their progression into one of the finest rockabilly bands around and should have got them more popular around the world since others like the Stray Cats came along and stole the spotlight away from them.

Housed in a sturdy clamshell box, each disc comes in a card wallet depicting the original LP art on the front. The 20-page booklet comes complete with in-depth liner notes plus pictures of all relevant singles sleeves and memorabilia. So, as you can see, this is not only a top-notch collection with bonus tracks and a great booklet but a great bunch of songs from a band that deserves to be heard and played over and over again. This is the kind of compilations that truly showcase a band and gives the listener a true taste of what was going on for the band back then and lets you dig deep into the great music.


Missing Persons Feat. Dale Bozzio - Dreaming

Missing Persons was such a big part of the early ’80s for me, with Dale Bozzio’s style, unique voice and the amazing songs…I was an instant fan. Of course, being a teenage boy, Dale was a big reason I loved the band…I did mention her style, right? Anyways, there is a new album out and let’s get to it.

You get twelve songs and three are originals with covers of The cars, The The, Joy Division and others. Starting off with the cover of “California Dreamin'” all I can say is wow! Her voice is amazing and the band keep the tempo down and it flows so well. New songs “Lipstick” and “Dreaming” are fantastic and I had to hit replay on them to hear them right away. So slinky, sexy and perfect. “We Gotta Get Out of This Place” made popular by The Animals is played slow and similar to the first song and is another cool version. “This Is The Day” originally by The The is a winner sounding as good as the original version and is very ’80s sounding. “Images In Heaven” by Peter Godwin is a peppy track that I really enjoyed and takes you back to the early ’80s with the sound of Missing Persons from back then. Strawberry Alarm Clock’s “Incense and Peppermints” is another fast-paced cover that really works and sounds like it could have come out in 1982.

All-in-all, a great return from an artist that I had hoped would put out something new after seeing her in concert last year for the first time ever. This will fit in perfectly with the earlier albums and will be one to play the hell out of. Great album, thank you for making my wish come true.


The Basement Paintings from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan got together in the winter of 2011 and quickly got to work recording a full-length debut album which was released in March of 2013. The follow-up EP, titled Time Lapse City was released in March of 2014, and their next release was Mystic. The band has a mix of progressive rock, metal, experimental, and post-rock sound that they manage to pull off quite well.

The songs are all instrumental and at times have a touch of Tool in sound, but never enough to make them a copyist, just like adding a touch of salt to your food; it seasons it enough to make it tasty. This band has a lot of talent, they play with such precision and with feeling that you can close your eyes and just nod your head along to the tracks and drift away. Not saying that there isn’t some metal crunch, but the songs just flow so beautifully that you get into a trance-like state listening to it. All of the tracks except one, are all over eight minutes long, the last track is a whopping fifteen minutes long, so make sure that you have the time for this.

With such lengthy tracks, the band has a chance to go places with the listener that they wouldn’t if they were cut shorter in time. Grab a drink, pull up a chair and go on a long journey with these guys and see where you land.


Formed in Madrid in 2006, The Kiss That Took A Trip is the brainchild of M.D. Trello, who stands as the sole member. Since its inception, He has been regularly putting out self-made releases, with the EP Dating Aphrodite (2008) and the albums, Worst Case Scenarios (2009), The Dummy Family (2011), How The Mighty Have Fallen (2012), Electroforest (2014), Electroforest (By Night) (2015), Happiness In The Presence Of Sadness (2016), and Punk Cathedral (2017). This is a mix of experimental, shoegaze, alternative rock and post rock and works together pretty well.

“Copernicus” starts things off with a cool shoegaze sound that really was a throwback to the ‘90s when that was popular, but didn’t sound retro at all. “Whoever Hurt You Has My Sympathy” is another great track that has a woman throughout fighting against someone. The track is a mid-paced groover that really stands out. “The Hays Code” is an overlong instrumental track that could be good if restraint was implemented.

All-in-all, not too bad of a collection of songs that vary from track to track, and will definitely catch your ears. I’m looking forward to checking out more of his music in the future.