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Teenage Fanclub & Opinions on Kanye West

Kurt Cobain called them the the best band in the world. Now Teenage Fanclub joins Jim and Greg in the studio for a conversation and live performance. Then they review the new album from Kanye West and Jim drops a quarter into the Desert Island Jukebox.

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The wait is over…The Beatles have come to iTunes. The famous holdout between Apple Corp. and Apple has come to an end, and the Fab Four's entire catalog will be available for digital download. As Greg explains, both singles and albums will be available, but for premium prices. Because of this, Amazon immediately brought their album prices down. This marks the sixth incarnation of The Beatles catalog being reissued, not including their first foray into the digital world: the videogame Rock Band. Perhaps because of this, Greg thought the announcement was rather anticlimactic. Jim's response is outrage. He can't believe The Beatles estate is asking fans to re-purchase their music yet again. And he notes that the list of artists still not on iTunes is pretty small: AC/DC, Kid Rock and Garth Brooks.

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Teenage Fanclub

Few bands from the early '90s are still going strong. But Teenage Fanclub is an exception. The Scottish power pop band formed in 1989, and, for most of its existence, has maintained the same lineup: guitarists and songwriters Norman Blake, Raymond McGinley, Gerard Love and Francis McDonald. Now they're also joined by keyboardist Dave McGowan. Jim and Greg talk to the band about their roots, their longevity, and the rarity of a band having three chief songwriters. They also ask them about the recording and reception of Bandwagonesque, the band's third record and the one that brought Teenage Fanclub its first taste of success in the States. In fact, Spin Magazine voted Bandwagonesque the #1 album of 1991 - favoring it over Nirvana's Nevermind, R.E.M.'s Out of Time and My Bloody Valentine's Loveless. While in the Sound Opinions studio, Teenage Fanclub performs songs from its new album Shadows, plus an oldie from 1995's Grand Prix.

reviewMy Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy (Deluxe Edition)My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy available on iTunes

Kanye West My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy

Kanye West knows how to get into the headlines. He's bumped heads with everyone from Matt Lauer to Taylor Swift to President Bush. But, it's important not to forget: he also knows how to make music. Jim says, OK he's a jerk…John Lennon could also have been a jerk. But what Kanye West achieves on My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy is nothing short of amazing. He combines Iron Maiden with King Crimson; robotic humming and what Greg calls "classical opulence." Greg compares West to ambitious artists like Brian Wilson and Marvin Gaye, but notes that what separates him is his inability to censor himself. That gives his music both bravado and vulnerability. Both Jim and Greg give My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy an enthusiastic double Buy It.

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“I Put a Spell on You”Screamin' Jay Hawkins

The life and death of John Lennon has been on a lot of our minds these days, Jim included. He recently watched the film Nowhere Boy, which depicts Lennon in his teen years. One of the scenes shows Lennon first discovering a vinyl record by Screamin' Jay Hawkins. As Jim explains, Hawkins was one of the first people to bring“fear and loathing”to rock ‘n’ roll. His 1956 track "I Put a Spell on You" is a classic. It was banned from a number of radio stations at the time, but if it was good enough for John Lennon, it's certainly good enough to add to the Desert Island Jukebox.

Featured Songs

  1. The Beatles, The Long and Winding Road, Let It Be, Apple, 1970
  2. Teenage Fanclub, About You, Grand Prix, Creation, 1995
  3. The Boy Hairdressers, Golden Shower, Golden Shower 12‘’, 53rd & 3rd, 1987
  4. Teenage Fanclub, Everything Flows, A Catholic Education, Paperhouse Records, 1990
  5. Teenage Fanclub, Eternal Light, A Catholic Education, Paperhouse Records, 1990
  6. Teenage Fanclub "Baby Lee, "Baby Lee, Shadows, Merge, 2010 Live On Sound Opinions
  7. Teenage Fanclub, Today Never Ends, Shadows, Merge, 2010
  8. Teenage Fanclub, Star Sign, Bandwagonesque, Creation, 1991
  9. Teenage Fanclub, What You Do To Me, Bandwagonesque, Creation, 1991
  10. Teenage Fanclub, Like A Virgin, The King, Creation, 1991
  11. Teenage Fanclub, Don't Look Back, Grand Prix, Creation, 1995
  12. Teenage Fanclub, Near To You, Howdy!, Columbia, 2000
  13. Teenage Fanclub, The Past, "The Past" Shadows, Merge, 2010
  14. Teenage Fanclub, Is This Music?, Bandwagonesque, Creation, 1991
  15. Kanye West, All of the Lights, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, Roc-A-Fella/DefJam, 2010
  16. Kanye West, Hell of a Life, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, Roc-A-Fella/Def Jam, 2010
  17. Kanye West, Runaway, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, Roc-A-Fella/Def Jam, 2010
  18. Screamin' Jay Hawkins, I Put A Spell On You, At Home, Okeh/Epic, 1958
  19. Blondie, Call Me, Autoamerican, Chrysalis Records, 1980
  20. Soulive, Doin' Something, Doin' Something, Blue Note Records, 2001
  21. Brian Eno, I'll Come Running, Another Green World, Island, 1975

Footnotes

washingtonpost.com Article on Apple Corp. and iTunes techflash.com Article on Amazon pricing teenagefanclub.com Teenage Fanclub's bandpage kanyewest.com Kanye West allmusic.com Screamin' Jay Hawkins