Archive for the ‘Cool stuff’ Category

This is for the Swedes out there. I have just read “Hög standard – Om Sonet, folkhemmet och starten för det svenska musikundret” (Leopard Förlag, 2018) by Swedish journalists Håkan Lahger and Lasse Ermalm. It deals with the classic record label Sonet that roamed the earth as a well respected independent company for decades before the eventual fall that resulted in Polygram taking over the brand in the early 1990s. It really is a wonderful story about men that cared about music, cared about people and saw more highs and lows than most. They basically went for broke in the 1950s and pretty much winged it until the very end. But they were also bigger than the major labels for years since they had such a solid reputation. A handshake was good enough in those innocent days and by the time it crashed and burned (along with the rest of the independents) they had a reputation among their peers on the international scene as absolute top men. A reputation well earned.

The writers of this book worked for years on this project, the result is remarkable.

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It was 50 years ago now (July 17 according to Wikipedia) that Deep Purple released their first album “Shades Of Deep Purple” in the US. It would take a couple of months for a UK release to appear and by then the band was already a massive hit overseas. The album would eventually climb to an impressive #24 position on Billboard, helped by the single “Hush” that peaked at #4. Hugh Hefner invited Deep Purple to his television show Playboy After Dark which was the beginning of an enduring love affair between Purple and America. It should be noted that the first lineup was very much a product of its time and although you have flashes of brilliance on this album, it would ultimately be the second lineup that would really conquer the world. But in America in particular, “Hush” (which was a Joe South cover) remains a mainstay to this day.

It is worthy of note that Purple was first out of the gate of the Big Three – the other two being Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath.

The Japanese hologram phenomenon Hatsune Miku is making waves. The mega show called Miku Expo is coming to Europe with shows in Paris, Cologne and London in early December. The show is visiting several cities Stateside right now and it is a huge success. It all started in 2004 when the Yamaha Corporation presented a music creation software that allowed users to write music and has it performed by Idol style Vocaloids. With “Vocaloid 2” (2007), Crypton Future Media created Hatsune Miku and the Vocaloid became a runaway success. Today the franchise is enormous and the most well known songs (most of them written by Joe Public) are being performed by a live band that flanks the hologram star with a stunning show that makes you think of Disney. The escapism is on a monumental level, but it is well crafted and highly entertaining. And fans will also be able to wave a lightstick in the air in unision, which is considered good fun by many.

Check out an official live clip from Japan 2016 here.

Classic Scooterist

Posted: July 15, 2018 in Magazines, Cool stuff, General

This is a nice cover. UK publication Classic Scooterist (June/July 2018). Late 1960s nostalgia, you half expect Austin Powers to jump into the image doing his thing.

The GG (Guy Gene) approves.

The Tommy Bolin Estate is auctioning off personal belongings of the late Tommy Bolin through the Gotta Have Rock´n´Roll auction site. Of particular interest for fans of Deep Purple is the classic The Ultimate t-shirt that he wore on gigs in the US (Tampa for one) and the UK in february/March 1976, as well as other interesting items.

Check it out here.

Good day

Posted: July 12, 2018 in Classic Rock, TV & Movies, Cool stuff, General

Here is some real culture for you. Got the new Double Picture Vinyl version of the new album from The Night Flight Orchestra (“Sometimes The World Ain´t Enough”) in the mail and later tonight I got a visit from my friend Kalle that has just arrived home to Sweden from having spent a couple of weeks in the States. Got some nice stuff (that is just the way he is), including this ultra cool John Wayne t-shirt.

On the back he is quoted and it says: “Tomorrow is the most important thing in life. Comes into us at midnight very clean. It´s perfect when it arrives and puts itself into our hands. It hopes we´ve learned something from yesterday”.

Many thanks Kalle.

Supporting Commando

Posted: July 12, 2018 in Comics, Cool stuff, General

Longstanding followers of this blog will note a slight change today as I present the new issues of Commando in a new way. I basically still showcase all four issues but highlight one (my pick, depending on what cover I like the most of the batch). The old style of showcasing the new issues (going back to 2012) is now a thing of the past and I have removed all those posts up until a couple of weeks ago as part of the reshaping of this blog that went down recently. There are still a bunch of Commando covers on display in the archives though as I have highlighted certain issues over the years. However, what I did with todays batch is the future, and that is how I will continue to support Commando from now on.

Long may it reign.