Boston

Episode 400: The End (For Now)

Episode 400: The End (For Now)

We’ve run our mouths from a basement in Washington, D.C. for four hundred episodes now, but sadly it is time to say goodbye.

Please join us for a bittersweet final hang in the basement with the people that we hold most dear saying goodbye to this chapter the only way we know how: Talking about Boston’s Third Stage.

Thanks for listening. Y’all are the goddamn best.


Episode 384: Morphine's 'Cure For Pain' at 25

Episode 384: Morphine's 'Cure For Pain' at 25

Morphine’s Cure For Pain is an album that revels in finding hope in the darkest nights of our souls. For twenty-five years the weird magic conjured by Mark Sandman (2-string bass/vocals), Dana Colley (sax), and Jerome Deupree (drums) has remained singular in its sound and remains (oddly) peerless to this day.

This week we’re celebrating their remarkable achievement by taking a deep dive into one of the greatest albums ever made PLUS checking in with friend-of-the-pod, author, musician, and native Bostonian, Ryan Walsh to get a first-hand account of the band in it’s prime.


Episode 354: Ryan Walsh, author of 'Astral Weeks: A Secret History of 1968'

Episode 354: Ryan Walsh, author of 'Astral Weeks: A Secret History of 1968'

Creation doesn't happen in a vacuum, and in Astral Weeks: A Secret History of 1968, author (and Hallelujah The Hills frontman) Ryan Walsh explores every weird, fantastical nook and cranny of Boston that surrounded and seeped into Van Morrison's soul-bending masterpiece. We're sitting down with Walsh to discuss how he brought this story to life, the eternal value of having your mind blown, and a history of his hometown that has remained largely untold…until now.


Astral Weeks: A Secret History of 1968 [Reading THIS Friday at Right Proper Brewery!]

Astral Weeks: A Secret History of 1968 [Reading THIS Friday at Right Proper Brewery!]

Sounds Like:

Nothing. It's a book. A damn GOOD book at that. 

Why You Should Care:

Born out of curiosity and fascination with one of the greatest albums of all time, Hallelujah The Hills frontman Ryan H. Walsh has crafted a modern classic of rock and roll biography in Astral Weeks: A Secret History of 1968. All but abandoning the usual behind-the-scenes insights we've come to expect from your standard music bio, Walsh's profile plunges the reader into a deeply weird, and awesomely psychedelic, exploration of the late-sixties Boston outside legendary singer/poet Van Morrison that ultimately seeped into the creation of his undisputed masterpiece.

Melding equal parts Hunter S. Thompson with the exacting, humanistic eye of Ken Burns, Walsh, through his at times unbelievable cast of "characters," events, and general far-outness achieves that rare feat of bringing history to Technicolor life by putting the reader in the room with the weirdos, heavies, and music legends that drift through this true story's landscape.

You can get lost in the slipstream yourself THIS FRIDAY when Walsh kicks off his book tour for Astral Weeks: A Secret History of 1968 right here in Washington, DC Right Proper Brewery in Brookland (920 Girard St NE, Washington, DC, 2001) from 7pm-9pm. The event is free (you can RSVP HERE) and will be Co-Hosted by David Malitz, of the Washington Post.

Whether you're a fan of Van the man, weird history, or just like great beer, this isn't an event you're going to want to miss. 


Episode 339: Love Hz (A Valentine's Day Special)

Episode 339: Love Hz (A Valentine's Day Special)

With Valentine's Day right around the corner, we thought it was high time to explore the dumber side of love. Throughout history, men have been writing songs about love in a quest to continually pitch their woo, but sometimes - pretty much every time - it just comes out wrong.

Join Kevin, Carrie, Marcus, and Ian as they embark on a journey into the heart of derpness and laugh their way through some of the most egregiously awkward "love" songs that missed their mark, and then some. 


"Aquarian" - Seneca B

"Aquarian" - Seneca B

Sounds Like:

A lofi hip-hop waterfall

Why You Should Care:

Hailing from Boston, MA, Seneca B is creating instrumentals that you should add to your hiking/travelling/otherwise wandering soundtrack. MF DOOM take notice...Seneca B is making the soundtrack to your next album.

With flowers adorning the cover art, “Aquarian” sounds smooth and silky with its melodic guitar and soul-singing sample. If Continuum-era John Mayer were to record music for a New York rap cypher, that would be this track. A perfect beat to deliver a mindful freestyle to, Seneca B shows that her calm and collected style flows with fluidity over an 808. Releasing Soundcloud and Bandcamp singles over the past few months, “Aquarian” is Seneca B’s most recent drop, so hopefully she is preparing for something big.

In the meantime, add “Aquarian” to whatever playlist you listen to when you’re staring at the stars on a summer night.


Episode 290: Reflections Of A Floating World - Elder

Episode 290: Reflections Of A Floating World - Elder

There's really no other way to say it: Music journalism is kind of in the sh@#@er in 2017. We're panling up in the basement to consider how things got this bad, could we all have done anything to stop it, and, most importantly, where do we go from here?  

Elder is a metal/prog band from Boston. We like Elder. Elder has a savage new album out, Reflections Of A Floating World. We like savage things. Seems like a thing we'd need to talk about, yea? 

PLUS! Colin Stetson is back and he's bringing his friends! This time the "heavy metal" wizard is diving headfirst in to metal/prog with his new band Ex Eye (featuring Stetson, Liturgy's Greg Fox on drums, Toby Summerfield on guitars, and Shahzad Ismaily on synths) and  and the results are as wild as you would expect. "Xenolith; The Anvil" is your first taste of this righteous sonic assault that's coming for all of us later this month. 


Episode 235: Naseem Khuri of Kingsley Flood

Episode 235: Naseem Khuri of Kingsley Flood

Kingsley Flood frontman Naseem Khuri has built his career writing songs about social injustice and the importance of sticking up for the "little guy"

On their latest album, Another Other, he's turning his observational acumen inwards to explore not just how we relate to others, but, more importantly, why.

Khuri joined us in the basement a week before America's historic election to talk about the new album, writing introspectively versus observationally, the band's upcoming LP release show in Washington, DC on 11/19, and much, much more. 


THE LIST for July 15th, 2016: A Peek Behind The Curtain

THE LIST for July 15th, 2016: A Peek Behind The Curtain

This week we published our 200th episode of Chunky Glasses: The Podcast. It was a long road full of...well...mostly beer, but the point is we got here by staying true to our "vision", just doing what it is we do, and believing in the power of weird.

In the spirit of that weirdness, this week's playlist is a look inside what has driven the podcast over the years, either directly - you may recognize some of these songs from our outro - or indirectly. In other words here's a glimpse into my head, a view that our crew knows well, that offers the clearest look at how and why we do what we do.  - Kevin


Episode 109: Pile - You're Better Than This / Ryley Walker - Primrose Green

Episode 109: Pile - You're Better Than This / Ryley Walker - Primrose Green

On our latest podcast, we check in on Boston noise rockers, Pile, and their new album You’re Better Than This, then take a long, strange trip with Chicago-based songwriter/guitarist Ryley Walker and his latest van-worthy collection of jams, Primrose Green.

PLUS! Kanye West may have been pegged to headline this year’s Glastonbury Music Festival, but all may not be well in the land of yeezy.  NINETY THOUSAND signatures stong and counting, a petition launched last week by a group of dissatisfied music fans seeks to convince the organizers that soon to be Dr. West may not be the right fit for this annual musical throw-down. Will they prevail? Should Kanye back out? Are music festivals even worth it anymore? We ponder these questions and more on Episode 109 of ChunkyGlasses: The Podcast!


Hoax Hunters - "Smooth Control"

Hoax Hunters - "Smooth Control"

Sounds Like:

Jawbox on speed; The Hold Steady on crank; Superchunk by way of Boston, by way of Richmond; The Dambuilders, because DUH.

Why You Should Care:

If you’ve checked out our podcast earlier this year with PJ Sykes then you’d already know that he’s an ambitious guy. How ambitious? Try making a mini-documentary about covering one of your favorite artists’ songs just a few months after releasing the stellar LP Comfort & Safety ambitious. PJ and the rest of the Hoax Hunters gang (Ben Nicastro, James O’Neill) hit the studio with the blessing of revered Boston noisemakers  The Dambuilders and friends Marty Key (Ted Leo and The Pharmacists) on bass and Richmond, VA’s Anousheh on background vocals to knock out a raucous version of The Dambuilders “Smooth Control” off of their seminal 1995 release Ruby Red.


Boston - "Cool The Engines" [FLASHBACK]

Boston - "Cool The Engines" [FLASHBACK]

Sounds Like: Motherf#$%ing OUTER SPACE!; Eight million guitars at once delivered to your face; the 70’s after it had an accident with a Tardis; mighty fine podcast intro music.

Why You Should Care: All of this has happened before…

Fridays are for flashbacks (or something) and so we’re delivering a DOUBLE FLASHBACK, as that is simply how we roll. This isn’t the first time we’ve posted this track, and much to the chagrin of the team, it won’t be the last. But since we’ve kicked off posting tracks again, just different this time, it seemed appropriate.

What you’re about to put in your ears is either one of the greatest achievements in the history of recorded music or THE GREATEST. Hyperbole aside, in 1986, 70s rockers Boston were well past their prime (when WERE they in their prime, really?) yet saw fit to drag their van-tastic sensibilities kicking-and-screaming into the latter half of the 80s without a hint of irony. Third Stage was supposed to be some sort of statement. But much like the 70s as a whole, its message hilariously missed its own point, as much as it illuminated a few reasons why the 70s were so “groovy” in doing so.

One man. One woman. Learning how to commit. Who the #@#@ is Hollyann?


REVIEW: Kingsley Flood - Battles

Kingsley Flood’s music is frequently referred to as “Americana,” a label that may have worked early in their career. But comparing them to a band like Mumford and Sons is like comparing a 1967 Mustang to a 2009 Mustang: there’s some things that look the same on the surface, but you don’t have to look to hard to find the differences. Putting it another way, one is a fake, plasticized replica of something; the other is Kingsley Flood.

Their new record, Battles, is certainly more electric than their 2010 debut Dust Windows or last year’s Colder Still EP, but the core rock sensibility has always been there.  And to say that a Strokes-esque rocker like “Down” is Americana does a disservice to both the genre and the band, since it’s extremely difficult to pigeonhole them into such categories.

Battles was built on a successful PledgeMusic campaign, and comes as the band is riding a wave of attention. Late last year their hometown saluted them with a Boston Music Award for Americana act of the year (there’s that word again), Rolling Stone and American Songwriter streamed new songs, and MTV dubbed the leadoff single from the album, the blues-rocker “Pick Your Battles”, as “buzzworthy.” (Yes, apparently this is something MTV still does.) (While most of the band has remained in Boston, Singer/guitarist/songwriter Naseem Khuri has taken up residence in the District, meaning our area can now lay at least partial claim to the budding stars.)

Make no mistake, the accolades foisted upon Kingsley Flood are well-deserved. Battles offers a clinic in top-notch songwriting, from the quiet, introspective leadoff, “Don’t Change My Mind” to the country-rocker “Strongman” to the Springsteen-tinged “The Fire Inside,” there isn’t a weak link to be found among the albums twelve songs.


REVIEW: Dropkick Murphys - Signed and Sealed in Blood

“The boys are back and they’re looking for trouble.” So begins the Dropkick Murphys new album, an obvious nod to one of their influences, Dublin’s Thin Lizzy. In fact the “boys” of the Dropkicks are never gone that long, averaging an album just about every two years since their 1998 debut Do Or Die. A comparison can be made to AC/DC, who released an album every year from 1975-1981; the Murphys put out albums on a regular basis, and they rarely stray from the same formula.

In the Murphys case, it’s a clever mix of traditional Irish instruments and electric guitars, all with a hardcore punk mentality and a furious devotion to their hometown of Boston. At their best, they can make you feel like you’ve been drinking in a seedy Irish pub while still in your own living room. And Signed and Sealed in Blood is the band at their best, a rowdy, blistering, and altogether fun record that mixes the banjos and bagpipes with distorted guitars and slathers Al Barr and Ken Casey’s growling vocals on top of it all. 


Episode 16: Rocktober And Everything After

In this, the headiest podcast yet, the gang tells all about the month that almost killed them, fogs up the van and travels back in time, because why the hell not? PLUS!!! New music from Australia's Tame Impala, Sweden's The Amazing, and finally (!!!) Florida's Roadkill Ghost Choir!!!

Episode 16: Rocktober And Everything After"







Daily Listen: Drrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

Look. From time to time this is gonna happen. The last time it was because The Arcade Fire sort of broke our brains. This time it's because The Arcade Fire's fellow Polaris Prize nominee's Braids kept us up late with our brains spinning.

The upside to this is that I can tell you that Braids is absolutely the band you must see right now, especially if you are fans of Bjork, Kate Bush and/or Sigur Ros.

The downside is, well, you know.

We sincerely apologize for this, and promise to return you to the same awesome Daily Listen you've grown to love on Monday...unless Virgin Fest breaks us...which it might. 

Sincerely,

The ChunkyGlasses Family


Daily Listen (s): The Third Stage Thesis - Part 9 - THE FINALE: Hollyann (wait..what????)

Full disclosure: Today is my birthday, and while I generally get to do anything I want to do with the site, today I REALLY get to let loose. What you're about to read (or not) is reprinted in part from some emails I've been sending around for years. I have a problem with Boston's Third Stage you see. The problem is that it's the most ridiculously asstastically awesome of all time. In fact it my be the very "heart of rock and roll" that Huey Lewis and his News spoke of. On the surface, it's a work that will shatter your eardrums and hail the vileist of minions from the pits of hell...like all rock shoud. Look a little closer though and you'll find that it is in fact a work of great tenderness that is overflowing with teachable moments. What those moments are, I still haven't quite figured out, but maybe we can all work through this together to find some sort of enlightenment...in Boston....in Third Stage!

And now I give the official ChunkyGlasses album breakdown otherwise known as THE THIRD STAGE THESIS!

 

I'll just lay it out like this. It's hard being a man. You want to be free. I mean, these ladies are cool and all but in the end they're just draggin us down man. And there's SO many of them. What's a guy to do?

HOW ABOUT WRITE AN ENTIRE ALBUM ABOUT COMMITMENT THAT STARTS AND ENDS WITH TWO DIFFERENT WOMEN!!!!

Part 1 - Part 2 - Part 3 - Part 4 - Part 5 Part 6 - Part 7 - Part 8

Part 9: Hollyann

Wait...what the hell is going on here...WHO THE FUCK IS HOLLYANN???? WHAT HAPPENED TO AMANDA??? AND WHY DOES THIS SONG SOUND JUST LIKE "AMANDA" BUT IT'S CALLED "HOLLYANN"!!!!!! Did Boston open up some hole in the universe, or is our hero just some schmucky dood who didn't need his old lady dragging him down? And while we're on it, why does Third Stage sound like it was recorded in the 70's but didn't come out till 86? 

AAAARG!! More questions than answers!!

 

Boston - Hollyann (from the book of Third Stage, Chapter 9)

 

And that's all she wrote folks. Thank you all for bearing with me. I hope we all learned something today (though I'm still not sure what there is to learn) and I promise that this will never happen again....maybe.

I'll leave you know with the ancient inscription that can be found on the back cover of tome known only as Third Stage. With a few short words, Boston gives us all the keys to the universe...or something. Please accept their gift now. 

It took nearly six years to conceive and complete this album.
No orchestral instruments or synthesizers were used to creat the sounds.
Each individual piece of music relates a human experience.
And together they tell the story of a journy into lifes'
THIRD STAGE. 

Whoa. Fucking deep dudes. 


Daily Listen (s): The Third Stage Thesis - Part 8: Cantcha Say (You Believe In Me)

Full disclosure: Today is my birthday, and while I generally get to do anything I want to do with the site, today I REALLY get to let loose. What you're about to read (or not) is reprinted in part from some emails I've been sending around for years. I have a problem with Boston's Third Stage you see. The problem is that it's the most ridiculously asstastically awesome of all time. In fact it my be the very "heart of rock and roll" that Huey Lewis and his News spoke of. On the surface, it's a work that will shatter your eardrums and hail the vileist of minions from the pits of hell...like all rock shoud. Look a little closer though and you'll find that it is in fact a work of great tenderness that is overflowing with teachable moments. What those moments are, I still haven't quite figured out, but maybe we can all work through this together to find some sort of enlightenment...in Boston....in Third Stage!

And now I give the official ChunkyGlasses album breakdown otherwise known as THE THIRD STAGE THESIS!

 

I'll just lay it out like this. It's hard being a man. You want to be free. I mean, these ladies are cool and all but in the end they're just draggin us down man. And there's SO many of them. What's a guy to do?

HOW ABOUT WRITE AN ENTIRE ALBUM ABOUT COMMITMENT THAT STARTS AND ENDS WITH TWO DIFFERENT WOMEN!!!!

Part 1 - Part 2 - Part 3 - Part 4 - Part 5 Part 6 - Part 7

Part 8: Cantcha Say (You Believe In Me)

Wait just a minute! Something has gone wrong. Alright...look lady...I am pouring my fucking HEART out to you..can't you see that..I have FEELINGS. AND I'M A MAN. REAL FUCKING FEELINGS. AND I'M A MAN. I NEED YOU BABY SO BAD. I'M LOST IN THE WORLD WITH OUT YOU. DON'T GO BABY!!! DON'T GO..WAAAAAAAAAAA..SNIFFFLE..WAAAAAA.

Still a man.

 

Boston - Cantcha Say (You Believe In Me) (from the book of Third Stage, Chapter 8)


Daily Listen (s): The Third Stage Thesis - Part 7: I Think I Like It

Full disclosure: Today is my birthday, and while I generally get to do anything I want to do with the site, today I REALLY get to let loose. What you're about to read (or not) is reprinted in part from some emails I've been sending around for years. I have a problem with Boston's Third Stage you see. The problem is that it's the most ridiculously asstastically awesome of all time. In fact it my be the very "heart of rock and roll" that Huey Lewis and his News spoke of. On the surface, it's a work that will shatter your eardrums and hail the vileist of minions from the pits of hell...like all rock shoud. Look a little closer though and you'll find that it is in fact a work of great tenderness that is overflowing with teachable moments. What those moments are, I still haven't quite figured out, but maybe we can all work through this together to find some sort of enlightenment...in Boston....in Third Stage!

And now I give the official ChunkyGlasses album breakdown otherwise known as THE THIRD STAGE THESIS!

 

I'll just lay it out like this. It's hard being a man. You want to be free. I mean, these ladies are cool and all but in the end they're just draggin us down man. And there's SO many of them. What's a guy to do?

HOW ABOUT WRITE AN ENTIRE ALBUM ABOUT COMMITMENT THAT STARTS AND ENDS WITH TWO DIFFERENT WOMEN!!!!

Part 1 - Part 2 - Part 3 - Part 4 - Part 5 - Part 6

Part 7: I Think I Like It

NOPE. BACK ON THE YOU TRAIN BABY!!!! This is totally the right thing to do...for both of us...really. No I mean it. See how I got my bro's to uber-harmonize? Seriously. Forever baby. That's right. FOR-EV-ER.

 

Boston - I Think I Like It (from the book of Third Stage, Chapter 7)


Daily Listen (s): The Third Stage Thesis - Part 6: A New World/To Be A Man

Full disclosure: Today is my birthday, and while I generally get to do anything I want to do with the site, today I REALLY get to let loose. What you're about to read (or not) is reprinted in part from some emails I've been sending around for years. I have a problem with Boston's Third Stage you see. The problem is that it's the most ridiculously asstastically awesome of all time. In fact it my be the very "heart of rock and roll" that Huey Lewis and his News spoke of. On the surface, it's a work that will shatter your eardrums and hail the vileist of minions from the pits of hell...like all rock shoud. Look a little closer though and you'll find that it is in fact a work of great tenderness that is overflowing with teachable moments. What those moments are, I still haven't quite figured out, but maybe we can all work through this together to find some sort of enlightenment...in Boston....in Third Stage!

And now I give the official ChunkyGlasses album breakdown otherwise known as THE THIRD STAGE THESIS!

 

I'll just lay it out like this. It's hard being a man. You want to be free. I mean, these ladies are cool and all but in the end they're just draggin us down man. And there's SO many of them. What's a guy to do?

HOW ABOUT WRITE AN ENTIRE ALBUM ABOUT COMMITMENT THAT STARTS AND ENDS WITH TWO DIFFERENT WOMEN!!!!

Part 1 - Part 2 - Part 3 - Part 4 - Part 5 

Part Six: A New World/To Be A Man

Lady, just in case you didn't believe me with that last highly senstive (yet still manly) song, let me lay it out for you some more. Organs are sensitive, right? Well I'm gonna throw some of that organ stuff all up in there before I let my guitar do the talking...again. WHOA MAN. COMMITTED LOVE IS GROOVY!!

Wait. What's that? Um....now that I'm all committed what the fuck is this all about? I mean...life is so tempting and shit. Am I doing the right thing. I mean, would a MAN really be settling down like this? Especially when there is so much of me for ladies to enjoy. DAMN YOU CONFUSION!!!! 

 

Boston - A New World/To Be A Man (from the book of Third Stage, Chapter 6)