Even if La Costa Perdida isn't a great Camper Van Beethoven record, it does illustrate how unique this band still is, 30 years after it formed. And it truly is a kick to hear CVB ply its craft with road-tested assurance and subtly virtuosic musicianship. The bluesy vamp "You Got to Roll" doesn't totally work on record, but it should sound great in a concert setting, where the proggy accents of "Summer Days" and the "Euro-Trash Girl"-like epic "Northern California Girls" will also likely catch fire. In lieu of having great material, at least Camper Van Beethoven can count on being itself better than anybody else. pf
Having multiplied into a six-piece collective brotherhood, Radar Brothers spent the past few years collaborating, meshing their writing styles and recording an album that seamlessly welds together various worlds. The band will release Eight on January 29, 2013. Eight (being their eighth record) may well be Radar Brothers' darkest, hardest rocking, most psychedelic, and yet most intensely personal album to date. Jim Putnam’s knack for melody and surreal lyricisms are well intact, only darker and more personal at times, hilarious at others, poetically inspired at others.
Two golden oldies from two of my favourite bands