Alice Cooper: Love it to Death


Alice Cooper: Love it to Death
Alain DuPuis
In the late 1960s, Alice Cooper had failed to find any commercial success, despite having released 2 albums under Frank Zappa’s record label. Their sound was just too psychedelic, low-fi, and weird for most people. But that all changed in November of 1970, when with the help of Canadian producer Bob Ezrin, the band released the song, I’m Eighteen, to much acclaim. Approaching their music with a more aggressive, hard rock style, the band managed to convince Warner Brothers records that it had commercial potential to release an album, and I’m Eighteen became the first single on their third album Love it to Death, which was officially released in March of 1971.
The band’s popularity and fame only grew from there thanks to their reputation for putting on flamboyant, over the top live performances.
Love it to Death is considered to be one of the foundational albums that inspired the heavy metal sound, and left a considerable influence on hard rock, punk, and heavy metal. Joey Ramone wrote his first song for the Ramones based on the chords to I’m Eighteen, and John Lydon auditioned for the Sex Pistols by miming to the song.
Along with their contemporaries, Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple, and Black Sabbath, Alice Cooper helped shape the future of hard rock and heavy metal for decades to come.
Love it to Death Wikipedia Page
Alice Cooper Wikipedia Page
iTunes
Amazon

The Black Crowes: The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion


The Black Crowes: The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion
Scott Coates
Hard to Handle was the hit song of the moment and I was spinning it as a young DJ at Lloyd’s Recreation, a rollerskating rink and Calgary landmark that sadly recently closed. I was 17 and didn’t realize the ‘hit’ was a cover. A few other tracks on The Black Crowes first album, Shake Your Money Maker, caught my ear but then they kind of disappeared. Their second album, The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion came out but it didn’t really grab me.
Years passed, then sometime in the 2000s, I hit upon The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion again, and, wow… Age and maturity was needed to appreciate this one it seems. Much like Catcher in the Rye read at 15-years-of-age wasn’t fully grasped, this album escaped me during first listens at a young age.
The Crowes second release, it came out on May 12, 1992 and went on to spawn four hit singles. This album reminds me a lot of old Rolling Stones albums and rock albums of the seventies. I’ll stop here and let you decide – sit back – have a listen – and enjoy.
Wikipedia page
On iTunes
On Amazon

Review of Toots & The Maytals: Funky Kingston

Please read Darren Scott’s pick for Toots & The Maytals: Funky Kingston before reading and listening to our reviews below.

Quick Summary: 

  • Would we recommend?
  • Influence us and our tastes?
  • Overall
3.8

Review of Toots & The Maytals: Funky Kingston

As I (Darren) stumbled upon this classic reggae album in a time I needed some brightness, I took it as a sign. I was sure glad I did. This is a very fun and bright album from beginning to end. I have to say I was surprised that two of our members confessed they never really listened to reggae. We found out some funny facts and I think Scott Gregory revealed a bit too much. Ha ha. Listen along with us and we hope you took the time to listen to this fun album.
Find out not only factoids about the album, but also find out things like:
• The sample from a popular artist that Alain identified used Funky Kingston
• What two members identified themselves as not reggae fans but still enjoyed it
• Who makes the worst bong noise impression
Listen up and please leave us a comment.
The Sonic Collective


Our Individual Review Scores
Darren Scott:
Overall opinion: 4
Would I recommend?: 4
Influenced my tastes: 3
Scott Gregory:
Overall opinion: 3
Would I recommend?: 3
Influenced my tastes: 1
Alain DuPuis:
Overall opinion: 4
Would I recommend?: 4
Influenced my tastes: 5
Scott Coates:
Overall opinion: 3.5
Would I recommend?: 4
Influenced my tastes: 2

Toots & the Maytals: Funky Kingston


Toots & the Maytals – Funky Kingston
Darren Scott
I was near Recordland in Calgary on a very cold–like -25C cold–day so I had to go in. I was just looking around at albums when I heard the Recordland staff play Time Tough by Toots & the Maytals. I was completely overwhelmed by the song as it was freaking perfect. It was a freezing day so a nice beach-inspiring reggae song like that made me feel great. But I’ve also had a tough few years career-wise, like many Calgarians, and this really hit home. It again made me feel great to realize that “The Struggle” is real and capitalized. Everyone has their own struggle and you can’t compare to others. Fortunately, music like this can understand you, speak to you, and inspire you to do something. I wanted to learn more about this album.
I bought this album as well as Black Uhuru’s Red album and The Congos The Heart of the Congos album. All three are considered to be some of the greatest reggae albums out there. Ok, I know you are screaming Bob Marley at me but you have to listen to the podcast in order to find out why I didn’t pick him.
Please join me on a month of discovering or rediscovering reggae.
Darren
Funky Kingston Album on Wikipedia

Toots & the Maytals Website – Interesting history on Jamaica here!

Review of Prince: Purple Rain

Please read Scott Gregory’s pick for Prince: Purple Rain before reading and listening to our reviews below.

Quick Summary: 

  • Would we recommend?
  • Influence us and our tastes?
  • Overall
5

Review of Prince: Purple Rain

Though we can easily quote member Scott Coates when he says “This is a masterpiece!”, we will. This truly is a masterpiece. We rarely do a 5 Star rating but we did on this one.
However, this review is great. Find out not only factoids about the album, but also find out things like:
• How awesome or not the movie was
• Who Darren made out with to this album
• Why dancing impaired to Herb Alpert came up
Listen up and please leave us a comment.
The Sonic Collective


Our Individual Review Scores
Scott Gregory:
Overall opinion: 5
Would I recommend?: 5
Influenced my tastes: 5
Alain DuPuis:
Overall opinion: 5
Would I recommend?: 5
Influenced my tastes: 5
Scott Coates:
Overall opinion: 5
Would I recommend?:5
Influenced my tastes: 5
Darren Scott:
Overall opinion: 5
Would I recommend?: 5
Influenced my tastes: 5

Review of Depeche Mode: Some Great Reward

Please read Alain DuPuis’ pick for Depeche Mode: Some Great Reward before reading and listening to our reviews below.

Quick Summary: 

  • Would we recommend?
  • Influence us and our tastes?
  • Overall
2.9

Review of Depeche Mode: Some Great Reward

There is no denying the power and fans of electronic music and the impact of industrial music. However, where did this all start? Alain had previously pick Kraftwerk who were the Grandfathers of EDM and synth music so it seems fitting he picks a natural influenced band in Depeche Mode. This 4th album from 1982 had some big hits but did it stand the test of time? Did we think this was their best album? Listen up and let us know what you thought. Enjoy our last pick for 2017.
The Sonic Collective


Our Individual Review Scores
Alain DuPuis:
Overall opinion: 3.5
Would I recommend?: 4
Influenced my tastes: 3
Scott Coates:
Overall opinion: 2
Would I recommend?:4
Influenced my tastes: 3
Darren Scott:
Overall opinion: 2.5
Would I recommend?: 3.5
Influenced my tastes: 3
Scott Gregory:
Overall opinion: 3.5
Would I recommend?: 3
Influenced my tastes: 4

Prince: Purple Rain


Prince – Purple Rain
Scott Gregory
We only have a couple rules here at the Sonic Collective on how we pick albums;

  • it has to be at least 5 years old
  • it can be of any genre (I guess that’s more of an affirmation than a rule)
  • Has to be an original album (no greatest hits, soundtracks or compilations)

BUT – It can be a soundtrack if it’s entirely original material, composed and compiled for this purpose.
I’m glad we made this caveat, because there’s an album that’s considered one of the greatest of all time, usually ranked first or second behind Michael Jackson’s Thriller for best album of the 80s. It’s a soundtrack to an album of the same name.
The Sonic Collective’s album for January 2018 is Purple Rain by Prince and the Revolution.
The sixth studio album and the first to feature The Revolution, it’s sold over 25 million albums worldwide and is the third best-selling soundtrack behind Whitney Houston’s the Bodyguard and The Bee Gee’s Saturday Night fever.
But, let’s take a moment and reflect on the fact that Meatloaf’s Bat out of Hell, has outsold all three of them. That’s RIGHT. Greg, I miss you.
I’ve put together a little gameplan for this pick to try and really get the most out of this album.
I’ve heard all of Prince’s singles, but never listened to a full album. Apparently this is a real departure from his earlier work, so I think I’m going to start off by listening to the first five Prince albums for context before getting into this album.
After listening to the album a couple times I think I’ll go and watch the movie again. It’s been easily a decade so I can’t even remember most of it, but it’ll be fun to see where the album matches up with the scenes and themes in the movie.
Whether you go all the down the rabbit hole or just want to give the album a couple listens, I hope you join us at the end of January to discuss Prince and the Revolution’s Purple Rain. Cheers.
Purple Rain the album on Wikipedia
Purple Rain the movie on IMDB

Review of DJ Shadow: Entroducing

Please read Scott Coates pick for DJ Shadow:
Entroducing
 before reading and listening to our reviews below.

Quick Summary: 

  • Would we recommend?
  • Influence us and our tastes?
  • Worth the hype?
2.7

Review of DJ Shadow: Entroducing

Ok, first of all, this is a complex album. It is long and full of many experimental songs manufactured by DJ Shadow with basic equipment and lots and lots of samples. Though we didn’t rate it high as a group, there are definitely those who will love this album. It has some great historical value and there is no denying the talent of DJ Shadow. Listen to our reviews and find out what the good, bad and sometimes ugly was about this album.
The Sonic Collective


Our Individual Review Scores
Scott Coates:
Overall opinion: 3.5
Would I recommend?:4
Influenced my tastes: 3
Worth the hype?: 3.5
Darren Scott:
Overall opinion: 2.75
Would I recommend?: 2
Influenced my tastes: 2
Worth the hype? 3
Scott Gregory:
Overall opinion: 3
Would I recommend?: 3
Influenced my tastes: 3
Worth the hype? 3
Alain DuPuis:
Overall opinion: 2
Would I recommend?: 2
Influenced my tastes: 2
Worth the hype? 2

Depeche Mode: Some Great Reward


Depeche Mode – Some Great Reward
Alain DuPuis
1984 was a very important year, because that is the year I was thrust kicking and screaming into this mortal coil. Incidentally, a little known band that you’ve probably never heard of called Depeche Mode happened to release an album that same year, called Some Great Reward, which was important. I guess.
All kidding aside, Depeche Mode is often cited as being an extremely influential music group for the impact they had on the electronic music scene, the pop scene, the new-wave the industrial scene… Lots of scenes. The breadth of their influence is what convinced me that this was the album to dive into this month.
Some Great Reward featured some pretty impactful singles. People are People was culturally significant for several reasons: It topped the charts in West Germany and was ultimately used in the ’84 Olympic Coverage. Remember, this was at a point where the East and the West were at odds on a number of social and political issues. It’s even listed in the Rock n’ Roll Hall of Fame’s most list of 500 songs that shaped Rock and Roll. Other notable singles are Blasphemous Rumours, a song that tackles divine justice, and Master and Servant, a song that looks into sexual politics. Edgy stuff. Especially for the decade that spawned the “satanic panic.”
Full discolsure: I don’t know Depeche Mode’s body of work very well, and the only song I’ve heard from this album is People are People, which I appreciate for its verrrry 80s aesthetic and it’s industrial percussion. My hope is that I find the rest of the album just as awesome as I find People are People.
Check back at the end of the month for our review!
Further reading:
Depeche Mode Wikipedia
Some Great Reward Wikipedia

Review of Tom Petty: Wildflowers

Please read Darren Scott’s pick for Tom Petty: Wildflowers/a> before reading and listening to our reviews below.

Quick Summary: 


Our Individual Review Scores
Darren Scott:
Overall opinion: 5
Would I recommend?: 5
Influenced my tastes: 5
Worth the hype? 5
Scott Gregory:
Overall opinion: 5
Would I recommend?: 5
Influenced my tastes: 5
Worth the hype? 5
Alain DuPuis:
Overall opinion: 4.5
Would I recommend?: 5
Influenced my tastes: 4.5
Worth the hype? 4.5
Scott Coates:
Overall opinion: 4
Would I recommend?:4
Influenced my tastes: 4
Worth the hype?: 4