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The Niagara Moon Podcast
48 minutes | Dec 1, 2021
Ep. 108 - "Either/Or"
Elliott Smith - with all his carefully crafted, brooding yet ultimately hopeful pop/baroque/folk tunes - taps into a certain kind of honesty no one else can. As this week's guest Leezy puts it, it's as if he's singing directly to you. Many feel 1997's "Either/Or" is him at his best. Still not famous on a major label, but a little more evolved from his beginnings in the basement, alone with a tape recorder. Either way, it's all great tunes and deeply personal, poetic lyrics. Leezy is an amazing up-and-coming indie pop artist in her own right - definitely worth a listen: https://www.leezymusic.com/ https://www.niagaramoonmusic.com/
47 minutes | Nov 17, 2021
Ep. 107 - "Tusk"
"TUSK!" Fleetwood Mac. 1979. All the rock n roll riches in the world having been attained with "Rumours", there was no direction left to go but weird. Sometimes sublimely relaxing - other times brittle and manic - it's chockful of solid pop, and behind-the-scenes drama, naturally. Tusk superfan Nicholas Krgovich is back on the pod to help me break it all down! Check out his own lovely solo work, as well as Polaris Music Prize-nominated supergroup Shabason, Krgovich & Harris. https://nicholaskrgovich.bandcamp.com/ https://www.niagaramoonmusic.com/
51 minutes | Nov 3, 2021
Ep. 106 - "Pet Sounds"
Perhaps you've heard of it...? It's a little daunting trying to cover The Beach Boys' classic 1966 masterpiece "Pet Sounds". This is Brian Wilson's shining moment, though you wouldn't have known it judging by their US sales at the time... Paul McCartney knew what was up, though. What else is there to say? It's Pet Sounds. Enjoy me and Joe gushing over it. www.niagaramoonmusic.com/
39 minutes | Oct 20, 2021
Ep. 105 - "Steve McQueen/Two Wheels Good"
Adore. That's the keyword with Prefab Sprout's 1985 album "Steve McQueen" (aka "Two Wheels Good"). I adore this wonderful collection of heartfelt, sophisticated, slick yet earnest perfect pop songs - a perfect sonic marriage between frontman Paddy McAloon and producer Thomas Dolby, along with many others... Joining me to revel in the wonder of this vastly underrated band is Joseph Shabason, friend of the pod and fantastic ambient/jazz composer, producer, saxophonist, etc. https://www.niagaramoonmusic.com/ https://josephshabason.com/
52 minutes | Oct 6, 2021
Ep. 104 - "Odelay"
Beck's 1996 classic "Odelay"... This rapping deadpan cowboy slacker can do it all, especially with The Dust Brothers workin the turntables. A lovely balance of kaleidoscopic hip-hop sampling, bizarre lyrics, and solid songwriter hooks. Mark Grundhoefer helps me along as we tap into its nostalgic magic. https://www.niagaramoonmusic.com/ https://www.patreon.com/thecompleteguitarist
47 minutes | Sep 22, 2021
Ep. 103 - "A Live One"
I'm not much of a Phish guy... Mark loves them dearly. Together we explore both the impact of this band and their 1995 live double album, as well as the reasons each of us actually enjoy the music we listen to, dang it. However, I think we can both agree Phish is a bunch of grilled cheese-loving goofballs... https://www.niagaramoonmusic.com/ https://www.patreon.com/thecompleteguitarist
51 minutes | Sep 9, 2021
Ep. 102 - "Remain In Light"
1980's "Remain In Light" by Talking Heads... So far ahead of its time I still don't think we've caught up. David Byrne's insane antics. Weymouth and Frantz holdin down the grooves. Adrian Belew's next-level guitar solos. Brian Eno doing... whatever he does. A mind-blowing blend of art rock, African music and much more in this stone-cold classic. Mark joins me again in an in-depth album discussion! https://www.niagaramoonmusic.com/ https://www.patreon.com/thecompleteguitarist
50 minutes | Sep 1, 2021
Ep. 101 - "Whatever and Ever Amen"
By all accounts I should be a huge Ben Folds Five fan, but I'm just dipping my toes in the water now. He's a beast at piano. A master storyteller. Phenomenal composer. And that band is *on fire*. I can definitely dig it. Mark Grundhoefer is fortunately a Folds expert, so we dive into all the lore for the latest episode of the NMP. I'm presumably now back from my hiatus... www.niagaramoonmusic.com/ www.patreon.com/thecompleteguitarist
56 minutes | Aug 11, 2021
Ep. 100 - "Amnesiac"
2001's Amnesiac by Radiohead raises so many questions... Another album already - right after Kid A? Why is this song backwards? What time signature is this? Do I... like it? A weirder album from an already weird band, broken down by myself and Mark Grundhoefer for the 100th(!) installment of the NMP. https://www.niagaramoonmusic.com/ https://www.patreon.com/thecompleteguitarist
54 minutes | Jul 21, 2021
Ep. 99 - "Gaucho"
The dirtiest elevator music you've ever heard. 1980's Gaucho by Steely Dan was the band's last album for 20 years. And when you hear about the ridiculous amount of time, effort and money that went in, it's not hard to understand why. This jazz-pop opus sounds "perfect", but darkly, uncannily so. A lot below the surface here, and Mark Grundhoefer helps me break it all down! https://www.niagaramoonmusic.com/ https://www.patreon.com/thecompleteguitarist
57 minutes | Jul 14, 2021
Ep. 98 - "Close To The Edge"
Yes in 1972 were at the height of their powers, as made clear with their grand opus "Close To The Edge". Unbelievable that these sounds are from just a band of 5 guys playing in a room. Never losing sight of the pop-song basics, this album goes to space and back. Join Mark Grundhoefer and I on a good ol' prog rock nerdout. And yeah, we get into the Rick Wakeman organ... https://www.niagaramoonmusic.com/ https://www.patreon.com/thecompleteguitarist
54 minutes | Jul 7, 2021
Ep. 97 - "The Party" (Andy Shauf)
Been waiting a looong time to talk 2016's "The Party" by Andy Shauf... One of the greats from the last decade. The novelistic songwriting, the clarinet, the Beatlesque melodies - it's got it all, delivered by a shy quiet guy from Saskatchewan with a very unusual accent. Fellow diehard fan Eric Davis delights in getting into all the nitty-gritty with me... https://www.niagaramoonmusic.com/ https://www.instagram.com/__eric.davis__/
26 minutes | Jun 30, 2021
REPOST - Jenny O. (from 2018)
Jenny O. - another one of my *absolute fave* pop songwriters. Check out her latest album "New Truth" from Mama Bird Recording Co. https://www.niagaramoonmusic.com/ https://www.jennyo.com/
54 minutes | Jun 23, 2021
REPOST - Tristen (from 2017)
Many moons ago, one of my top favorite singer-songwriters Tristen came up to our place in Seattle for a chat. Resharing that convo today in celebration of her latest record "Aquatic Flowers" - out now everywhere. https://www.niagaramoonmusic.com/ https://www.tristen.com/
55 minutes | Jun 16, 2021
Ep. 96 - "Hounds of Love"
There's no other artist out there quite like Kate Bush. She's a musical island unto herself, and it's no wonder she's been a huge inspiration for generations of "artpop" musicians. There are few bigger fans of hers than Attila (back again from last month!), so it only made sense we dig into this 1985 claaaassic! https://www.niagaramoonmusic.com/ https://attxla.com/
56 minutes | Jun 9, 2021
Ep. 95 - "Pussy Cats" (Harry Nilsson)
Harry Nilsson in 1974, produced by John Lennon himself. This beautiful mess of an album saw Nilsson permanently damage both his vocal cords and his career, but at the same time you can't help but appreciate its wildly idiosyncratic sound. As a fellow Nilsson-head, Thin Lear knows what's up - we share both our adoration and puzzlement in great detail. https://www.niagaramoonmusic.com/ https://www.thinlear.com/
41 minutes | Jun 2, 2021
Ep. 94 - "Duke" (Genesis)
Big band. Big sound. Phil Collins. Synths on parade. 1980's "Duke" by Genesis is my official introduction to a band many Moondogs have mentioned to me, but one I knew nothing about. Seeing as it's one of Joe's favorites, he helped break it down for me - and they're pretty, pretty good! https://www.niagaramoonmusic.com/
58 minutes | May 26, 2021
Ep. 93 - "Illinois" (Sufjan Stevens)
A symphonic ode to the great Midwestern state. A raw emotional gut punch. Sufjan Steven's 2005 concept album Illinois is many things, all of them tremendously powerful and affecting. Thank you to Jordan Prince (guest of the hour) for gettin me to take a deeper dive... https://www.niagaramoonmusic.com/ http://www.jordanprincetunes.com/
60 minutes | May 19, 2021
Ep. 92 - "Swing Lo Magellan"
At first it may seem bizarre and even cacophonous, but there's a lot to love about 2012's "Swing Lo Magellan" by Dirty Projectors. Intricate, on-point songwriting, gorgeous harmonies, and the sound of a rock band turned on its head! Enjoy this music nerd outing with myself and longtime pod-buddy Basic Printer. https://www.niagaramoonmusic.com/ https://www.basicprinter.com/
41 minutes | May 12, 2021
REPOST - The Drifter Luke (from Fall 2017)
The son of evangelical missionaries, The Drifter Luke traveled frequently as a child, eventually settling in Washington state by age 9. He loved music from an early age singing bluegrass/gospel tunes with his family in church performance. By age 15, Luke began to focus more and more of his time to writing and creating original songs. With songs tackling ideas like addiction, faith, regret, expectation versus reality, and the seasons of life, The Drifter Luke's music sheds a fresh and compelling light on the human condition. https://www.thedrifterluke.com/ https://www.niagaramoonmusic.com/
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