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Rush Strutter Zep Magik
96 minutes | Oct 12, 2021
Lulu by Lou Reed and Metallica
It’s a podcast of extraordinary magnitude as Arianne joins Kevin and Mike for a meticulous dissection of the 2011 album Lulu. This controversial collab between Lou Reed and Metallica has garnered voluminous quantities of scorn and derision in the decade since its release, but our troika revisits the work from our own unique perspectives, sharing our respective interpretations of every facet of this avant-garde objet d'art. From Frank Wedekind to Kazimir Malevich and from crust punk to Jonathan Coulton, this episode pulls together the spheres of history, literature, and music to determine whether Lulu is a sporting case of jinkies and zoinks, or a caustic concoction of milk and Red Bull.
21 minutes | Oct 1, 2021
Roots of "Lulu"
If you’ve ever found yourself wondering how in the world the 2011 Lou Reed/Metallica album Lulu came into existence, here’s your answer, fish-bulb! This isn’t quite a full episode, so we’ll call it a mini-sode and it’s all about the roots of the aforementioned collaborative endeavor. Included in this discussion (or maybe it’s more along the lines of a monologue) is information about the original author of the Lulu plays, Frank Wedekind, as well as Alban Berg, the composer of the operatic adaptation of the Lulu stories. Interspersed within the narrative are excerpts of ensemble readings from Wedekind’s “Earth Spirit” and a sample of Berg’s Lulu opera, featuring Evelyn Berg. For those who stick it through to the end of the episode, there’s a special, once-in-a-lifetime contest featuring a prize for one lucky listener. All this is prologue for our next full-length episode in which we will be joined by the illustrious and insightful Arianne for a thorough discussion of the Lulu album itself! Watch for it! Related, recommended, and required resources for this episode: The works of Frank Wedekind at Librivox Lulu by Alban Berg at Internet Archive Alban Berg's Lulu and Adorno's commentary - RUINS
77 minutes | Aug 29, 2021
The Shaggs: Philosophy of the World
BRAND FREAKIN’ NEW AND NOW ONLINE! Imagine a crisp page of graph paper featuring a perfectly executed, two-circle Venn diagram that depicts the coexistence between euphony and cacophony. Somewhere on the page, we might find a point representing The Shaggs — perhaps mingling in the bulbous hinterland of the extreme left or right of the diagram, or maybe firmly entrenched amongst the meaty layers where the two shapes overlap. In this episode of the Rush Strutter Zep Magik podcast, we take their infamous and/or legendary album “Philosophy of the World” for a spin and, much like the wonky speedometer on an old Looney Tunes cartoon, we find ourselves asking “Is this trip REALLY necessary?” Link. In. Bio.
52 minutes | Jul 27, 2021
Special Episode: Neal Jones of Without Your Head & Severed Limbs Film Festival
Neal Jones, a.k.a. “Nasty Neal” of Without Your Head Horror and Beyond, joins Mike for a very special installment of the Rush Strutter Zep Magik podcast! In this “mini-sode,” we cover a lot of ground, including: Neal’s extensive experience as a podcaster and online personality, including his work on In Your Head Wrestling Radio, Inside Your Head, and Without Your Head. His evolving body of work in independent horror films, from moderating panel discussions at conventions to experience as an actor and producer. The upcoming online event, Severed Limbs Film Festival 6. Topping it all off, Neal counts down his top five horror soundtracks and scores of all time, discussing what makes each selection special. Severed Limbs Film Festival 6 is showing on YouTube on July 31, 2021, beginning at 5 PM EDT. For more information, visit withoutyourhead.com, or search “Without Your Head” on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube!
81 minutes | Jul 21, 2021
The Rush Strutter Zep Magik Podcast is out for Revenge! In this episode, Kevin and Mike take this pivotal Kiss album for a spin, skipping through the conversational daisies with tangents about The Buzzcocks, the work of composer Edvard Grieg, the novel Steppenwolf by Herman Hesse, season two of Too Hot to Handle on Netflix, and, once again, Jürgen Habermas. There’s also a bit of discussion about the unfortunate exit of Eric Carr from the band, as well as a note on Vinnie Vincent’s extremely brief return to the Kiss family. At the end of it all, Kevin unveils his pick for the next episode, setting the table for what might well prove to be the most offbeat RSZM episode thus far. Related, recommended, and required resources for this episode: Gene and Paul in 1994 Revenge-era outtake in which Gene momentarily loses his mind on Paul. “Unholy” Official video
90 minutes | Jun 22, 2021
Ramones: Rocket to Russia
Blasting back to the heyday of the punk movement, Kevin and Mike hop aboard Rocket to Russia, the third studio album by rough and tumble rockers, The Ramones. Featuring prominently in this consummate discourse on pop culture are gratuitous references to the likes of Walt Whitman, Paul McCartney and Wings, The Fairly OddParents, Jack Kerouac, Motörhead, The Gong Show, and Fibber McGee and Molly. And somehow, Jurgen Habermas horns his way into the conversation yet again. Related, recommended, and required resources for this episode: “Palisades Park” by Freddy Cannon Covered by The Ramones on their Brain Drain album, this 1962 hit was written by Chuck Barris, who is best known for hosting TV’s The Gong Show. “R.A.M.O.N.E.S.” by Motörhead Live in Dusseldorf, 2004
87 minutes | Jun 2, 2021
Rush: Moving Pictures
This episode, the guys are joined by Kevin’s BFF, Andy, for a thoroughgoing discourse on “Moving Pictures,” the 1981 multi-platinum composition by Rush. In their preparatory remarks, Kevin and Andy recall wistful afternoons spent riffing on instruments at their local Sam Ash store and Mike recounts how he initially thought "Red Barchetta" was a song about a combine harvester. They plow through the work track by track with a few impromptu guitar demos along the way and sum up their thoughts on this standout work by the Torontonian trio. Related, recommended, and required resources for this episode: “Red Barchetta” (Live) From the Exit Stage Left home video. “YYZ” (Live) From the 2003 release Rock In Rio
79 minutes | May 7, 2021
Liz Phair: Exile In Guyville
This time around, Kevin and Mike get into the groove with Liz Phair’s debut album, Exile in Guyville. Before they break it down, Mike suffers the embarrassment of mispronouncing the name of our bestest pal, Arianne, and Kevin proclaims the gospel of Ted Leo. The guys discuss the history and artistry of Exile in Guyville, chatting about the album’s forthright lyricism, its evocative guitar work, and its storied association with Exile on Main Street by the Rolling Stone. As Mike's boxer puppy Delphie frolics in the background, they run through the record track by track, comparing notes about the style and substance of Liz Phair’s first big splash. Before signing off, Mike reveals his pick for the next episode. Related, recommended, and required resources for this episode: Brigette Bardot: "Contact!" (1968) Brigitte Bardot wears a Paco Rabanne dress while surrounded by the kinetic sculptures of Nicolas Schoffer. Liz Phair on 120 Minutes (1994) Liz discusses Exile in Guyville and how the album cover was developed. Liz Phair: "Never Said" (1994) Liz Phair's first appearance on The Late Show with David Letterman Liz Phair: "Stratford-On-Guy" (1993) Official video.
94 minutes | Apr 10, 2021
Prince: Purple Rain
Kevin and Mike are joined by RSZM superfan Arianne for a thorough discussion of Prince’s 1984 masterwork, Purple Rain! During the lead-up to their featured confab, Kevin gives props to the Meet My Friends The Friends podcast, Arianne discusses her affection for Dad rock, and Mike runs down some of his favorite Zeppelin influences, including "Mississippi" Fred McDowell. Sharing personal reminiscences and their respective analyses of each track, the trio chats up this multi-platinum pièce de resistance, also touching upon key moments of the film as well as some of the movie's key figures, including Apollonia and Morris Day. Related, recommended, and required resources for this episode: “Baby I'm A Star” (Live) Performed in Landover, Maryland in November 1984. Bruno Mars & Morris Day and The Time - Tribute to Prince Performance at the 2017 Grammy Awards Morris Day on Late Night With David Letterman Originally aired August 30, 1984. “When Doves Cry” Official Music Video from 1984.
77 minutes | Mar 25, 2021
Led Zeppelin: Led Zeppelin III
It’s a hoedown in the tradition of “Bron-Y-Aur Stomp” as Mike and Kevin enjoy a platter of piping hot Zeppeliny goodness in the form of Led Zeppelin’s tertiary offering, Led Zeppelin III. On the way to the proverbial fireworks factory, Kevin praises the pre-Hagar incarnation of Van Halen and Mike talks up his duct-taped Norma-brand acoustic guitar. The guys plow track by track through LZ3, chatting about the rock, blues, and avant-garde facets of this illustrious pastiche, wrapping the show with an offbeat pick and a special co-host for the next big show. Related, recommended, and required resources for this episode: “Immigrant Song” (Live) Video featuring live excerpts from the early 1970s. Robert Plant: Bron-Yr-Aur Live audio from 1970 in which Plant tells the audience about the significance of the place called “Bron-Yr-Aur.” Roy Harper & Jimmy Page Interviews and performances from Old Grey Whistle Test, 1984. "Shake 'em on Down" by Bukka White The lyrics that inspired "Hats Off to (Roy) Harper"
94 minutes | Mar 10, 2021
Kiss: Lick It Up
At long last, Mike and Kevin engage in spirited discussion regarding Lick It Up, the Kiss LP that launched the “We’re never putting the makeup on again, no way, no how” era! Al Castle, Senior Writer for Pro Wrestling Illustrated joins the guys for this roundtable chat about one of the most consequential flashpoints in the continuum of Kisstory. A grab bag of selections ranging from melodic to banal and from provocative to unabashedly raunchy, Lick It Up offers a good deal of material to debate. Along the way, Mike gives a shoutout to the folks at the "All Our Pretty Songs" podcast, Al touches on his longstanding appreciation for the work of Bon Jovi, and Kevin cracks dad jokes and dismisses comparisons between the late Aristotle Onassis and himself. Related, recommended, and required resources for this episode: "All Hell's Breakin' Loose" Official video release. Lick It Up Tour live footage Lisbon, Portugal; October 1983. Vinnie Vincent: Metal Tech Guitar Video Vinnie runs town techniques from the first album by Vinnie Vincent Invasion. "Young And Wasted" live Eric Carr on vocals; from the Animalize Tour, Detroit 1984.
82 minutes | Feb 16, 2021
Thin Lizzy: Jailbreak
For this - the tenth full-length episode of Rush Strutter Zep Magik - Kevin and Mike tee up Jailbreak by Thin Lizzy, a true underrated gem of the 1970s hard rock. Kicking things off, the guys run through some unfinished business from the 2112 and Jimmy Page/Chopin shows, and Kevin recounts his recent reacquaintance with Synchronicity by the Police. Mike shares his enthusiasm regarding the triumphant return of the Bayside High and Drunk podcast and offers a shoutout to the good folks at Trojan City Music for quickly repairing his beloved Vintage-brand Greeny/Moore Les Paul after a late-night mishap. A meandering trip through the track listing of Jailbreak reveals that the guys are as close to the state of sympatico as they’ve ever been on a RSZM review as the guys chat about the life and legacy of Phil Lynott, the enduring influence of Thin Lizzy, and noteworthy covers of cuts from this album by Gary Moore and Everclear. Related, recommended, and required resources for this episode: “The Boys Are Back In Town” by Everclear From the Detroit Rock City soundtrack “The Cowboy Song” by Thin Lizzy Live at the Sydney Opera House (1978) “The Cowboy Song” by Gary Moore and Schott Gorham Live performance from One Night in Dublin (2005) Phil Lynott: Songs For While I'm Away Film trailer
27 minutes | Feb 3, 2021
Mini-sode: Jimmy Page and Frederic Chopin
It’s another solo mini-sode with Mike at the helm and this time around, the topic at hand is Jimmy Page’s rendition of Frédéric Chopin’s “Prelude in E Minor, O. 28, N. 4.” This unusual piece - which Page included on his offbeat soundtrack for Charles Bronson’s Death Wish II - became a staple in Page’s live sets from ’83 through ’88, including his appearances at the ARMS concert series, the numbers he contributed to the Willie and the Poor Boys project, his years with The Firm, and his Outrider tour. This episode covers some of the more noteworthy performances of "Prelude," many of which were performed by Page on his Fender Brown B-Bender Telecaster. Also up for discussion are some notes on the life and work of Chopin and a look at how The Firm used a piece from Gustav Holst’s “The Planets” to introduce their live shows during their first tour. Included in the show are samples of work by Chopin and Holst. Related, recommended, and required resources for this episode: “A Brief History of Fredric Chopin” A short biographical sketch for the YouTube pianoTV “The Guitar Show” featuring Jimmy Page A clip from 1985 in which Jimmy shows off some of his guitars, including his B-Bender “Prelude” by Jimmy Page Performed at the 1983 ARMS show in London “These Arms of Mine” by Willie and the Poor Boys The official video featuring Jimmy Page playing his B-Bender
100 minutes | Jan 14, 2021
As they begin their latest trip around the sun, Mike and Kevin gaze into the far-flung future, discovering a reality in which a clique of sinister collectivists rule with an iron fist, suppressing creativity and individuality, to and fro, all the live-long day, and so forth. It’s the story of the Rush rock opera 2112, as well as the various and sundry lesser-known tracks which comprise the part of that album that used to be known as “Side B.” Before blasting off to the dystopian city of Megadon, Mike recounts his COVID Christmas and Kevin discusses his family’s rich history of surviving gas leaks. The guys talk about guitar gear and revisit the familiar topic of cable news clichés and the most maligned phrases of the American vernacular. By the way, whatever happened to murder hornets? Related, recommended, and required resources for this episode: “2112: Overture/Temples of Syrinx” Performed live in Frankfurt for Rush’s 30th anniversary tour. Alex Lifeson talks about Rory Gallagher Excerpted from a documentary this clip includes Alex’s recollections of their first tour, in which Rush supported Rory. Neil Peart Interviews Canadian politician Jean Chrétien From MuchMusic, October 1993. The Philosophy Behind Rush's Lyrics A mini-documentary by Polyphonic.
26 minutes | Dec 17, 2020
Mini-sode: Music and Social Movements
And now for something completely different: In this “mini-sode,” - a solo effort by Mike - we’re swapping out the likes of Geddy Lee and Gene Simmons with names like Theodor Adorno and Max Horkheimer. Venturing beyond the parameters of our typical rock and/or roll fare, this show provides a brief look at how music has influenced social movements. Spotlighted in this discussion is the work of Bertolt Brecht as well as the role of Jiang Qing in reshaping art and culture during China’s Cultural Revolution. It’s a short side trip down a proverbial rabbit hole, for sure, but it’s also probably an apropos palette-cleanser for our forthcoming talk about Rush’s controversial concept album, 2112. Related, recommended, and required resources for this episode: “Pirate Jenny” by Nina Simone A 1964 performance of the song from The Threepenny Opera. Music of the Cultural Revolution A collection of songs from the Eight Model Operas, converted from flexi-disk recordings. “Questions From a Worker Who Reads” by Bertolt Brecht The full text of a 1935 poem by Brecht. The Red Detachment of Women The complete 1961 film, filmed in the People’s Republic of China.
92 minutes | Nov 26, 2020
The Jimi Hendrix Experience: Are You Experienced?
Rush Strutter Zep Magik ventures through a psychedelic wormhole in this episode, landing upon the hallowed grooves of the 1967 debut album by The Jimi Hendrix Experience, Are You Experienced? Before the trip begins, Kevin shares accolades for Canadian alternative rockers The Dirty Nil, as well as ‘90s staples Better Than Ezra. Mike talks about the greatness of Steve Marriott and Humble Pie and he recounts his experience attending a virtual meet-and-greet with high priest of black metal Jeff “Mantas” Dunn. The guys also chat about guitars and gear, including the line of Joyo effects and the much-touted Mosky Golden Horse overdrive pedal. After recounting the nuts and bolts of the production and release of Are You Experienced? (and somehow avoiding a substantive discussion of the work of Frankfurt School Marxist Jürgen Habermas), they go track by track through this legendary long-player, sharing reminiscences and ratings of this essential work by rock’s most celebrated axemen. Related, recommended, and required resources for this episode: "Foxy Lady" by Ace FrehleyA 1994 solo performance, recorded in Brooklyn, New York. "Hey Joe" by Kiss Performed in 1994 during a soundcheck in Santiago, Chile. "King of New Orleans" by Better than Ezra The first track from the 1996 release, Friction, Baby. "May This Be Love" Behind the Scenes A documentary account of the production of this track.
95 minutes | Oct 20, 2020
Rush Strutter Zep Magik returns with fire and thunder, surveying the landscape of a Kiss keystone, the 1976 album Destroyer. Before they get down to it, Kevin recounts all of the times that he has met Andrew W.K. and Mike discusses his longstanding affection for the founding fathers of black metal, Venom. The guys also talk about guitars and gear, including the super cheap MiMiDi delay pedal as well as the terrific stuff by the good people at Electro-Harmonix. They go track by track through Destroyer, discussing the origins, alternate takes, and noteworthy covers of some of the most important songs in the Kiss canon. Related, recommended, and required resources for this episode: “Party Hard” by Andrew W.K. AWK’s live performance from the 2002 season of Saturday Night Live “Do You Love Me?” by Nirvana A crazy cover from the ’92 Sub Pop compilation Hard to believe: A Collection of Kiss Covers Kiss Wins the 1976 People’s Choice Award for Music Footage of their big win for “Beth,” including appearances by Dick Van Dyke and Goldie Hawn “Venom” by Venom 1979 demo featuring Clive Archer of vocals, from the Sons of Satan album
96 minutes | Sep 23, 2020
Led Zeppelin: Led Zeppelin IV
In this episode, Mike and Kevin wind on down the road and careen headlong into Led Zeppelin’s fabled fourth album. Some call it Led Zeppelin IV, others call it Runes, and the folks who call it Zoso are probably the kind of people who use the phrase “having said that” on a regular basis. Mike recalls buying the LP from a Gold Circle store the summer before his freshman year of high school and shows off his new (slightly cracked) mandolin, favoring listeners with the first dozen or so notes from “Battle of Evermore.” Kevin struggles to remember the riff from “Four Sticks” and reveals his favorite Dread Zeppelin tune. Along the way, the guys go track by track through the album and hash out where they think this multiplatinum masterwork belongs in the grand scheme of the rock and roll ether. Topping it all off, Mike announces his pick for the next episode of Rush Strutter Zep Magik. Related, recommended, and required resources for this episode: “The Beatles - And Your Bird Can Sing” by PowerPop Including the fascinating story of how Joe Walsh learned one of George Harrison's most compelling guitar solos. “Going to My Hometown” by Rory Gallagher The song that inspired Mike to buy a mandolin. Led Zeppelin at Live Aid (1985) One of the most infamous moments in the storied careers of Led Zeppelin... and Phil Collins. “Stairway to Heaven” by Dread Zeppelin Robert Plant's favorite cover band performs the runner-up song from 1987 edition of WTUE's "Top 500."
90 minutes | Aug 23, 2020
Returning to the roots of the show, Mike and Kevin journey back to the heady days of 1982 for a look at the Rush album Signals. Before they get down to business, Mike recounts his recent attendance at a COVID-era drive-in concert by Dayton-area staple The Fries Band and Kevin raves about the music of Jeff Rosenstock. The guys also reflect on the reception they received to last month’s episode in which they covered Pink Floyd’s The Wall. Turning their combined attention to Signals, Kevin shares his reactions to hearing much of that album for the first time and the guys compare and contrast their track-by-track ratings to the rankings offered by UltimateClassicRock.com in their ambitious article, “All 167 Rush Songs Ranked Worst to Best." Somewhere along the way, Mike and Kevin lapse into a protracted discussion about words and phrases that Mike can’t stand and Kevin reveals that he knows a thing or two about Insane Clown Posse. Rounding out the show, Kevin taps Led Zeppelin’s fourth album (call it whatever you want) as the topic for the next show. Related, recommended, and required resources for this episode: Alex Lifeson Isolated Guitar Solos From Signals 1982 Isolated audio from the center channel of the Signals surround-sound DVD. Captain Beefheart on Late Night (November 11, 1982) Don Van Vliet appears on Late Night with David Letterman, promoting Ice Cream for Crow. The Fries Band Official Facebook page of Dayton's premier vocal band. Rush - Analog Kid guitar cover by Michael Bonet A scintillating note-by-note cover of the incredible guitar work
129 minutes | Jul 21, 2020
Pink Floyd: The Wall
It’s a double-sized episode for a legendary double album! In this, the landmark fourth episode of Rush Strutter Zep Magik, Kevin plays his “Magik” card by selecting Pink Floyd’s acclaimed conceptual extravaganza The Wall for review and comment. Before the featured discourse, they discuss the necessity for lighthearted tunes in the midst of these trying times, with Kevin espousing the merits of post-Disney Miley Cyrus and Mike sharing a bit about the musical exploits of his former middle school teachers. Kevin also breaks out his guitar - a Fender American Vintage '62 Jazzmaster – and tries his hand at a few riffs from The Wall. Along the way, the guys wax philosophical about the album’s music, lyrics, and themes while also touching upon the 1982 film adaptation of The Wall starring Bob "I Don't Like Mondays" Geldof. From Bertolt Brecht to Blackie Lawless, Mike and Kevin run down the album's influences and impact as they assess The Wall’s ultimate place in the pantheon of rock and/or roll. Related, recommended, and required resources for this episode: The Bertolt Brecht Archive The official website for Bertolt Brecht's literary estate. History of the Fender Jazzmaster Everything you want to know about Kevin's treasured axe. The Lacey Jane Band (Facebook) Feel-good classic rock from a couple of Mike's former middle school teachers. The Wall (Vimeo) The complete film online.
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