Väsen have been around for well over a decade, refining their sound and producing a series of delightful albums, first for their Swedish home market and then finding a global audience. Just how far they reach now is evident from the fact they recorded this live disc in Japan. The humor in their sound is more evident live, but the delightful interplay between nyckelharpa, fiddle, and guitar is apparent throughout, right from the opener, "Björkbergspolskan." The material largely draws from their last two discs, which is fine – those albums were two of the best of their lengthy career.
Seeking a U.S. breakthrough, A&M Records held Black's second album, Comedy, back from release until a re-recorded 1989 version of his U.K. hit "Wonderful Life" could be added as the leadoff track. There is also a remixed version of the U.K. hit "Sweetest Smile," which, like "Wonderful Life," previously appeared on Black's debut album, Wonderful Life. Also included were the more recent U.K. chart singles "The Big One" and "Now You're Gone." All of which means that, in its U.S. version at least, Comedy was almost more of a hits compilation than a formal second album. That, however, lent it a certain consistency, and in its newer songs, the album showed Black moving away from the cocktail jazz and doomy lyrics of his debut and toward a more eclectic sound, as well as lighter, more romantic sentiments.
In keeping with the band's imperfect career, The Best From the Noise Years takes an imperfect stab at assembling the best moments from German melodic thrashers Rage…
Stand Up is the second studio album by the British rock band Jethro Tull, released in 1969. Stand Up represents the first album project on which Anderson was in full control of the music and lyrics. The result was an eclectic album with various styles appearing in its songs, yet an album which remained somewhat in the blues rock mould, which would be the last such album from Jethro Tull. The album quickly went to number 1 in the UK charts.
How to Ruin Everything is Face to Face's reflection piece. The bandmembers take a look back on what made them love punk rock in the first place and churn it into an infectious disposition. They spent the 1990s fighting against the mainstream and through various personal and professional shifts inside the band, and How to Ruin Everything emerges as Face to Face's strongest material to date. Frontman Trever Keith is fierce, and his songwriting is now shaped into something courageous and meaningful. He and bandmates bassist Scott Shiflett and drummer Pete Parada ignore current punk-pop sounds for a gnarling rock growl.
Since the Scorpions' career was at its peak, World Wide Live could not have been recorded at a better time. This 19-track album contains all of their early-'80s hits, and while they aren't as energetic on-stage as they are in the studio, the band still perform with a great amount of flamboyance…
Believe it or not, Gold is the first compilation with U.S. distribution to provide a fair and rather thorough glance at Kool & the Gang’s career from 1969 through 1987. Dozens upon dozens of other sets either focus on one of the group’s distinct eras or attempt clumsily to appease those who want “Jungle Boogie” and “Joanna” in one spot. The Chronicles catalog division of Mercury realized that roughly 90 percent of Kool & the Gang’s chart hits can fit neatly on two discs, so this is an ideal package for casual fans who can appreciate raw ’70s funk and slick, radio-friendly ’80s R&B.