[Music] Vadim Petrenko – RIO​-​Collection /Rock In Opposition/

The Rock-In-Opposition movement had a very short shelf life, but produced some of the most amazing avant-progressive rock bands.  Think of acts like Univers Zero, Henry CowArt Zoyd, the Art Bears, Stormy Six and others.  Their influence was felt far and wide, and you can hear it in the work of former ZGA guitarist Vadim Petrenko.  He has synthesized the influences of his favorite artists and added his own take on the genre.  His work with ZGA was stunning, so I’m looking forward to hear how he develops as a solo artist.

[Music] Ciro Berenguer – El Mar De Junio

One of Eilian Records’ finest releases to date, Argentine-born, Barcelona-based composer Ciro Berenguer releases a very ambient guitar album.

From Eilian’s Bandcamp page:

Ciro Berenguer is a guitarist and composer from Argentina who has lived for many years in Barcelona, Spain.  He likes both traditional and nontraditional ways of playing the guitar: processing the sound through many electronic devices or playing just the guitar alone.  Two facets of his playing expressed in a handful of albums and collaborations, from standard guitar music to a more experimental and improvised way of making sounds, enjoying both approaches.

[Music] Scott Walker – Farmer In The City

The loss of Scott Walker is about as monumental for many as was the loss of, say, David Bowie or Mark Hollis.  Though I had known about his pop music (including the reinterpretation of Jacques Brel’s hit, Le Chanson de Jacky), this song was a revelation.  It was so far removed from pop music that I figured it sounded more like a combination of cabaret music done by experimental or apocalyptic folk musicians.  It was a brilliant career pivot, and he ended up working with some really intriguing characters until his passing yesterday.

[Music] “A-cute-cute in a stupid-ass way”

The last paragraph shows how devolved society has become if you can’t play a wonderful song by one of the most intriguing artists of his generation. So be it. Still, much respect to Ben Zimmer for the read of the day – commenting on the rendering of “stupid-ass,” which seems so non-offensive now, but which must have caused headaches for the censors back in the day.

Strong Language

With the passing of Scott Walker, who found pop-music fame as a member of the Walker Brothers before setting out on an inimitable solo career, the singer’s best-known work has been making the rounds online. One particularly memorable song from Walker was his first solo single, “Jackie,” released in December 1967. “Jackie” was an English-language rendering of Jacque Brel’s “La chanson de Jacky,” translated from French by Mort Shuman (a Brill Building songwriter who would go on to co-create the musical revue Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris). Both the French and English lyrics were quite racy for the time. The English chorus, as unforgettably delivered by Walker, goes:

If I could be for only an hour
If I could be for an hour every day
If I could be for just one little hour
A-cute-cute in a stupid-ass way

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