Mea culpa: I didn’t know that “When The Lights Are Out,” which will be on the forthcoming Cheap Trick album, was actually a cover of Slade until many an astute reader e-mailed and commented to let me know. I’ll take my 40 lashings with a wet noodle, Ann Landers-style, and embed the British glam pioneers’ version for those of you who, like me, were unaware of its existence until now. Because it’s still quite good, of course! [YouTube / Earlier] More »
Cheap Trick’s “Sick Man Of Europe” is the first single from their forthcoming album The Latest, and by golly, they certainly sound like they’ve been revitalized over the past few years. The riffs crackle, Robin Zander’s voice sounds nearly curdled, and the whole enterprise brings the words “kick ass” to mind over and over again. (I know, I know, not the most erudite assessment, but when one gets bludgeoned, it’s often hard to sound smart in the immediate aftermath.) Another track from the album–the somewhat more traditional powerpop “When The Lights Are Out,” which is apparently a track from the band’s earliest days–is after the jump. More »
We don’t post tour dates that much here at Idolator because we have much more important things to write about, like Katy Perry riding dildo-shaped stage props and what Patrick Stump is doing right at this very moment. But once in a while, a tour comes along that is so extraordinary that it must be covered. As many of you read on Tuesday, I am a Cheap Trick fan. Any new Cheap Trick tour gets me very excited, so that alone is good news. But how about throwing in a little Def Leppard on top of that? Sounds like mass hysteria (haw haw), right? Well, how’s about a little Poison with your… tricked-out… leopard? That’s right, guyliner pioneers Poison are on the bill as well. Can I say Tour of the Century? Sure, these bands are about as fresh as the Fresh Prince now, but how many hits do they have between them? A bajillion? Heck, Cheap Trick’s most famous record is a live record! I bet I would know every single song performed, unless somebody decided to trot out a new one.
Disclosures up front: I proposed to my future ex-wife at a Cheap Trick show, so I guess you could call me a fan. I think that Bun E. Carlos is a great drummer, undersung because he’s not flashy in a band with a lot of flash. This is particularly true given that the band came of age in an era where drummers were adding toms and bass drums; I’ve always found him tasteful, a nice contrast to the antics of Rick Nielsen. So you can imagine that the sortasupergroup Tinted Windows—which counts as its members Carlos, James Iha, Adam Schlesinger, and Taylor Hanson—has me excited.
“Somewhere along the line, the three-minute pop song fell out of favor with young rockers, who instead favor proggy pretensions and Radiohead-style pomposity. The result is often an ambitious sprawl of ‘movements’ and ‘passages’ that seems impressive on the surface but rarely strikes the listener in the heart. Nightmare of You, on the other hand, has landed a bull’s-eye.” A bull’s-eye, you say? Yes, Newsday columnist Rafer Guzman thinks Nightmare Of You’s cover of Cheap Trick’s “On Top Of The World,” available on the band’s MySpace page, is the bee’s knees. The Ultragrrrl fave “completely overhauls the arrangement in favor of a rich, supermelodic style that’s part Britpop, part Broadway. Any smart crate-digger could have discovered this nugget, but Nightmare polishes it into pure gold.” Cheap Trick made “supermelodic?” No way!
A few weeks ago, we noted that Cheap Trick is performing all of Sgt. Pepper’s with the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra. Well, they will now be joined by Ministry’s Al Jourgensen, at least for “I Want You (She’s So Heavy).” More »
Noted Beatles coverers Cheap Trick will
play all of Sgt. Pepper with the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra, and joining them will be Aimee Mann, Joan Osborne, two other dudes, and “an Indian instrumental ensemble” for “Within You Without You.” Meanwhile, noted glasses-wearers The Decemberists are on a tour wherein they play with a different orchestra in every city, and earlier this week they played with the Grant Park Orchestra in Chicago, apparently not very well. (The countdown to Tribune critic Greg Kot getting flamed by Colin Meloy’s girlfriend starts now.) Coincidentally, on the same night Clay Aiken performed with the Syracuse Symphony Orchestra, apparently kinda well. So which one of these performances would you rather see (if forced)? And how long before the Claymates descend and tilt our poll in their hero’s direction?
Last week, we found a vintage clip of Patti Smith playing to an audience of adorably cheery moppets during an appearance on Kids Are People, Too; and now, a tipster has sent along footage of a Cheap Trick performance from the same show. More »