Tag Archives: 70’s

What It Is

14 Feb


Any track Pete Molinari releases is like opening a time capsule from the 60s-70s but that timeless essence is really captured on “What I Am I Am.” Channeling George Harrison, the track would fit perfectly on All Things Must Pass. A cross between “My Sweet Lord” and “If Not For You,” Molinari has a certain retro air about himself that carries over to his music.

This particular song has a twangy feeling from the instrumentation to the tone of Molinari’s voice. It’s sweeping and glides along with such an effortless charm that it is impossible not to fall in love with this track. There’s quite a lot going on in the background instrumentation, from rattling percussion to tinkling piano, and there is even an extended solely musical portion that ends the song, but it never takes away from Molinari himself. His vocal performance is a bit George Harrison, but also has some Bob Dylan, and John Lennon to it. Perhaps it is this mix that helps “What I Am I Am” propel itself into throwback territory.

The melody of the chorus, as well as the content of the entire tune, suits that All Things Must Pass feel. “Here what I say/Let your love stream forth my way/ My Lord/Sweet Lord.” There is such a spiritual vibe to this track that I would bet Harrison would give his approval to if he were still alive. And I don’t say that lightly. If you’re looking for something to help cure the absence of Harrison’s masterpiece album, check out “What I Am I Am” and maybe your heart will start to heal.

Discography: A Train Bound for Glory (2010), Theosophy (2014).

Official Website: http://www.petemolinari.com/



How Can You Really Not Love Foxygen

5 Oct

Indie rock band Foxygen, who are known for psychedelic sound, make no apologies for their lo-fi sound in “How Can You Really” off of their third soon to be released studio album “. . . And Star Power.” In fact, the way that Foxygen embraces their late ‘60s/early 70’s sound is what makes them so unabashedly modern.

“How Can You Really” is a hazier version of Todd Rundgren’s 1972 power pop hit “I Saw the Light” with lead singer Sam France delivering delicate yet blurrier vocals than Rudgren. The lightness of the song comes through on the intro which carries itself into the melody, hitting on mellow tones, never steering itself too far into the dark, despite lyrics that suggest otherwise.

At nearly the three minute mark the tune commits an act that is all too rarely heard in music today: A good guitar solo. Ok, there are other instruments at play, but it is the guitar that appears to be having its moment of glory. Let me be clear, It’s not that these instrumental breaks don’t happen in other current groups, it’s just that it is becoming a more rare art form and Foxygen wants to make sure nobody forgets its importance in a song. It may only last around ten seconds, but it is enough to make an impression on listeners.

As a complete package “How Can You Really” is a great leading single and puts its stamp on retro rock in 2014

Discography: Take the Kids Off Broadway (2012), We are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace & Magic (2013), … “And Star Power (2014)

Official Website: http://www.foxygentheband.com


Give Your Love To The Hosts

3 Aug

Right from the start, with its energetic bursts of jingle and borderline synth pop, The Hosts “Give Your Love To Her,” makes a retro statement. But when lead singer Curtis Stoutenburg starts to sing, one is immediately taken back to a different era: 70’s power pop.

The Raspberries “Go All The Way,” comes to mind as each are approached and delivered with vim and vigor . The tune also lends itself to stadium anthem levels, like U2’s “Sunday Bloody Sunday.” And it’s that mix of 70’s and 80’s alternative pop that gives “Give Your Love To Her” a wholly timeless feel.

It may be hard for some listeners to believe that the song was released in this day and age, but it is not simply a copycat of other bands gone by. There is uniqueness in Stoutenburg’s voice, in his inflections, and his range which are heard throughout the track.

Listening to the tune is bound to put a smile on just about anyone’s face, with its bouncing melody and smitten lyrics. So, show The Hosts some love and go on a journey with “Give Your Love To Her.” You won’t want it to ever end.

Discography: Softly, Softly (2014).

Official Website: http://www.facebook.com/thehosts

Move With The Temples

11 May

Within the first few seconds of “Move With The Season” by Temples, one may automatically hear something familiar musically, and dare I say it, be moved.

Its slow burn graze will easily put listeners into a hypnotic trance, a spell that you want to give in to and fall under. Think The Turtles “You Showed Me.” Or “Aquarius/Let the Sunshine in” by The 5th Dimension.

Temples capture magical psychedelia of an era long gone by here, not only vocally and instrumentally but with the message of their lyrics.

“When the time comes move with the season/
Lend your young ears to the sound of day/”

Genuinely sounding as if it could have been released in the late 60’s early 70’s, “Move With The Season” is a song that transcends time, even in this modern age.

Discography: Sun Structures (2014)

Official Website: http://www.templestheband.com

Royally Good

26 Jan

“Monte Carlo” by U.S Royalty is the modern day male equivalent of Fleetwood Mac’s “Dreams.”

Almost everything about this track is evocative of “Dreams,” done in a fresh and updated way. From the simple guitar riff that opens the song, to the stinging electric guitar and to the epic chorus which most strongly hits the nail on the Fleetwood Mac sound by employing a group of voices in an echo like effect. It’s wildly effective and one can almost sing the “Dreams” chorus right over the one on “Monte Carlo” and have it synch up.

Of course the content in each song is vastly different, but it doesn’t matter.

The US Royalty balances the scales of retro and modernity so well, lead singer John Thornley playing his part as the male version of Steve Nicks, that it’s hard to tell if they were aiming for a 70’s sound in the first place, or if this is just what the band wrote naturally.

Check out “Monte Carlo” and come up with your own conclusions.

*Bonus Live Version*

Discography: Mirrors (2011), Blue Sunshine (2014).

Official Website: http://www.usroyaltymusic.com

Take a Trip Down the River with Little Green Cars

29 Sep

“My Love Took Me Down To The River To Silence Me” by Little Green Cars can be interpreted as a lovesick anthem, or a murderous folk tale among other theories. No matter which way you read it, the track channels the harmonies and folk stylings of Crosby Stills Nash and Young (“Teach Your Children Well”) while keeping the song fresh and new.

Faye O’Rourke takes the helm of the track, strong and exotic but also vulnerable and fragile. Reading like a tale of folklore passed around at a local Irish Pub, O’Rourke commands listeners to feel her pain. “This love’s killing me but I want it to” she repeats in the chorus while her bandmates wail like damaged ghosts “But I’m still here waiting for you.” You can’t help but sense the eeriness of the tune which gives it an old world appeal.

Mixed with the 70’s retro aspect, “ My Love Took Me Down To The River To Silence Me” is a song for any generation.

Discography: Absolute Zero (2013)

Official Website: http://www.littlegreencars.co.uk

Make the Right “Pick”

7 Apr

Staccato piano chords and drumbeat help Pickwick’s “Halls of Columbia” get the groove rolling along It’s a slow –down and dirty – bluesy – soul – head nodding – toe tapping tune that feels as if it is an unearthed, unreleased export from the Elton John catalog (Circa “Bennie and the Jets”).

The real star of the track is lead singer Galen Dillard-Disston, bringing forth an adult contemporary sound that is as much Elton John as it is The Black Keys. Disston’s voice bears the weight of the track, nuanced and full of rock n’ roll with a heaping amount of soul.

Wailing its way through “Halls of Columbia” Pickwick is a band that you’ll want to keep your eye on and your ears tuned in to.

Discography: Can’t Talk Medicine (2013)

Official Website: http://www.pickwickmusic.com/