2013 was such a good year that I'm only now sufficiently recovered to write about it.
Or, 2013 sucked so very hard I've only just begun to unearth the worthwhile nuggets.
Pick whichever one sounds better to you.
In either circumstance Let It Rock! by the Connection is a terrific record. Channeling equal parts early Beatles, Paul Collins, and down and dirty 60's garage rock, the Connection grabs hold of the listener early on and either throttles them or sends them to the dance floor. (depending upon how one feels about dancing.) "Wrong Side of 25" and "Crawling From the Wreckage (Of a Saturday Night)" set the tone for the album with energy, verve and good humor. "She's A Keeper" is a lovely little slice of crystal clean guitar pop, and a serious contender for song of the year. (2013 that is.)
"Nothing About Me" explores the rootsy side of things with aplomb. (That's right. I dropped the "A" bomb. Deal with it.) "Thinking About Leaving" and the Stones-ish "Girls In This Town" pump up the rock quotient to just this side of screaming hot. The latter track in particular gets freight train momentum behind with its piano and horns adding just what we need, so much, in fact, that when they yell "...it don't mean that we gotta be friends!" it's hard not to yell along. (Warning: This will make the wife look at you funny.)
Other standouts include the introspective "Not How It's Gonna Be," the quirky sing-a-long "Melinda," and a terrific cover of the Chuck Berry classic which gives the album it's name.
As if that isn't enough, the physical CD product adds on eight (well, nine, in fact) bonus tracks that rock just as hard.
I gotta say this for 2013, it's still giving.
So, what exactly am I supposed to impart here? Maybe you'd like to know how long it has been since we've had a new album from Cotton...
Artists, if they stay productive enough over a long enough period of time, reach a point where their own back catalog can weigh them down. I...
I had the good fortune recently to spend an hour or so chatting with power pop songwriter and performer Mark Bacino. During our conversation...