All posts tagged: Darlene Love

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Album Review: Darlene Love, “Introducing Darlene Love”

It was a canny move on the part of producer Stevie Van Zandt — he of E Street Band and “Sopranos” fame — not to try to shoehorn a “modern” sound onto “Introducing Darlene Love,” his comeback vehicle for perhaps the greatest backup singer of all time. After all, if there’s anyone who doesn’t need a reboot it’s Love, whose soulful, booming vocals are, amazingly, just as rich as they were when she first belted out “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)” in 1963. Instead he goes full-Spector for most of the album, and the results are joyous — for Love, who sounds like she’s having the time of her life, for Van Zandt, who gets to indulge his inner Wall of Sound, and for songwriting collaborators like Bruce Springsteen, Elvis Costello and Jimmy Webb, who contribute lush pop confections that could have come straight out of the ‘60s-era transistor radios they probably once kept under their pillows. The two tracks Springsteen penned are definite standouts — in particular “Night Closing In,” which sounds like a …

smile-sessions

Popdose 2011: Mike Duquette’s Top Catalogue Projects

According to crazy people, next year will see the wholesale demise of compact discs as well as the heroic efforts of Jon Cusack saving the world from cataclysmic disaster. With that in mind, you’d think the year’s crop of reissues, box sets and other catalogue sets would be wildly disappointing. In fact, they managed to improve upon what wasn’t too shabby a year before. It felt like a week could not go by without reporting on some sort of vintage-oriented title, and with 2012 fast approaching, the time has come to tick off some of the best and the brightest – arranged in no order but alphabetically. The Beach Boys, The SMiLE Sessions (Capitol) It’s still hard to believe it’s legally possible to buy a set of material from The Beach Boys’ fabled unreleased album, the heartbreaking turning point for a band that should have had more years of transcendent pop music in them. Debate its merits as much as you want: at five CDs and a handful of vinyl, it’ll strike some as too comprehensive or too much like Brian Wilson’s completed …

The Popdose Podcast: Episode 4

Don’t know what to get your friends and loved ones for the holidays this year? If they’re lovers of merriment, obnoxious humor and immature behavior, we can think of no better gift than The Popdose Podcast, Episode 4! Sure, it doesn’t cost anything to give as a gift, but that just leaves you more money to spend on yourself this season. Because let’s face it — you’re worth it. In this episode, our illustrious hosts discuss — you guessed it — the holiday season, from gifts to music and everything in between. You’ll also find out exactly how Cabbage Patch Kids are born. We only wish we were making this up. Please leave us your thoughts in the comments, and if you like the show, please leave a review on iTunes. Enjoy! The Popdose Podcast, Episode 4: Cabbage Section (1:01:45, 70.7 MB), featuring Jeff Giles, Jason Hare, and Dave Lifton. Download from You can also subscribe to the podcast’s RSS feed. Show Notes 0:00 Intro, leading into a varied holiday discussion. We start by discussing …

Soundtrack Saturday: “Gremlins”

Here’s the thing — I love holiday-themed horror films. In fact, one of my favorite Christmas movies is the original Black Christmas (1974). You may think that makes me sick and twisted, but I’m really not; there’s just something about taking “the most wonderful time of the year” and adding blood and gore and evil that fascinates me. I think Gremlins (1984) may have been the starting point for my love of horror-filled holiday fare. It’s the embodiment of my reasons for loving Christmas-themed horror movies: the joyous and adorable turned into the frightening and demonic. Directed by Joe Dante, written by Chris Columbus, and executive-produced by Steven Spielberg, Gremlins begins with struggling inventor Rand Peltzer (Hoyt Axton) trying to sell his wares at a store in the Chinatown section of New York City. There he becomes enamored of a strange creature called a mogwai and decides it’ll be the perfect Christmas gift for his teenage son, Billy (Zach Galligan). He’s told at first by the store’s owner (Keye Luke) that the mogwai isn’t for …