Wednesday, October 10, 2018

New sets celebrate the legacy of essential '70s recordings

A well-known classic from John Lennon comes to life courtesy of a stellar blu-ray while a rediscovered collaboration between Big Star's Alex Chilton and the dB's' Peter Holsapple set for release on Oct. 12 is sure to please fans of those two groundbreaking artists.

Artists: John Lennon & Yoko Ono
Title: Imagine & Gimme Some Truth (Eagle Vision)
You might like if you enjoy: John Lennon, Yoko Ono, George Harrison
Tell me more: Eagle Vision has released a stellar title featuring both "Imagine" and "Gimme Some Truth" on a single collection (available on blu-ray, DVD and via digital format). Filmed in the summer of 1971, "Imagine" is a freewheeling "video album" that strings together artful films for the 10 songs featured on John Lennon's second solo album Imagine as well as some short video shorts positioned between many of the cuts. Filmed mostly at John and Yoko's home in Ascot, England and in New York, the film features colorful videos for the inspired "Imagine," countrified "Crippled Inside," "cutting "How Do You Sleep?", tender "Oh My Love" and other favorites. Of equal interest is the GRAMMY Award-winning "Gimme Some Truth," a fascinating documentary providing an in-depth look and listen at the sessions that gave rise to the "Imagine" album. The scenes featuring the creation and recording of the songs "Oh My Love" and "How Do You Sleep?" are of special interest to Beatles fans as they showcase George Harrison playing guitar and working with Lennon in the studio. Bonus features on the blu-ray reviewed here include raw studio out-takes for "Jealous Guy," "How" and "Gimme Some Truth." Information:

Artist: Peter Holsapple and Alex Chilton
Title: The Death of Rock: Peter Holsapple vs. Alex Chilton (Omnivore Recordings)
You might like if you enjoy: Alex Chilton, Peter Holsapple, Big Star
Tell me more: The rediscovered tracks that comprise The Death of Rock: Peter Holsapple vs. Alex Chilton make for a joyful listen despite the competing interests of the two artists featured on the 19-track collection. Raw and honest in every way that matters, the genesis of the sessions that yielded this mix of tuneful rock and art damage is likely much easier to process in 2018 than when the cuts were recorded in 1978. Peter Holsapple, who contributes detailed liner notes on the collection, recalls he was chasing the legacy of power pop pioneers Big Star when he left his home in North Carolina and rolled into Memphis and was able to meet and work with that band's co-founder/lead singer Alex Chilton. The Death of Rock is broken down into sections featuring each artist. Holsapple's material is the more tuneful, better capturing the melodic rock style he was honing (just listen to the enticing "Bad Reputation" yearning "House Is Not A Home" and winning garage rocker "The Death of Rock"). Chilton was simultaneously turning his back on the power pop of Big Star's seminal first two albums and was interested in tapping into the burgeoning punk rock movement; indeed his material is loose and intentionally unpolished (as evidenced by a near-destruction of the blues classic "Train Kept A Rollin'," and his low-fi originals "Tennis Bum" and "Marshall Law"). As Holsapple notes in the revealing liner notes: "I caught Alex exiting a world of sweet pop that I was only just trying to enter, and the door hit me on the way in, I guess." Information:

Robert Kinsler

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