Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Favorite Albums: Bloodletting (Concrete Blonde, 1990)

In my angry and misspent youth, while transitioning from hair metal to darker music like The Cure, an album that has stayed with me is Concrete Blonde's Bloodletting. It is a shame to me that Concrete Blonde did not receive the attention of the masses that similarly dark, proto-emo bands like Smashing Pumpkins received, but I take solace in my belief that fans have never fallen out of love with the band.

Certainly Bloodletting was not the band's only album, but it is the one that has stuck with me more than any other. Mexican Moon (1993) is a good one, but somehow left me less than thrilled. I am not fanatical about the band, and maybe my love is akin to Rush fans who are only interested in Moving Pictures? Sometimes a particular album strikes a chord that leaves all other behind.

Favorite tracks include "Bloodletting (The Vampire Song)", "The Sky is a Poisonous Garden", "Caroline" and "Joey", though all have their appeal. "Tomorrow, Wendy" is a ridiculously sad song that will certainly stick with you. The album is a mix of frantic rock and downer ballads that defy the bubble gum nature of the late eighty's penchant for power ballads and precipitate the grunge movement's dark side but with a more progressive metal feel. The album has been remastered with additional tracks for its 20th anniversary.

Also worth checking out is Johnette Napolitano and Holly Beth Vincent's Vowel Movements, which I have not listened to for years but remember being quite infatuated with for some time.

Here is the video for my favorite, "Caroline". While it is a dark rock song, it hearkens back to another awesome band from the eighties, The Motels and "Only the Lonely".


dfordoom said...

I love Concrete Blonde. True is a song that still blows me away every time I hear it.

Someone else who remembers The Motels! For some reason they were huge in Australia, but never really big anywhere else.

Darius Whiteplume said...

"only the Lonely" is about the only thing I remember. I saw them on some old band vs old band show a few years ago and they were awesome for a bunch of 40/50 somethings :-) Their singer rocks still.

Retro Hound said...

I loved this album too except for the last song that was viciously anti-Christian. I found that such a bummer that it overrode the rest of the album and I got rid of it. I recently ran across a cassette I had made of the CD for road trips (back before anyone I knew could afford a CD player in the car) and was pretty impressed with it once again. Of course, I left off that one song. ;-)

I have the Motels album with that "Only the Lonely" on it. All Four One I think it's called.

Darius Whiteplume said...

The last song is "Tomorrow, Wendy" which for me is a bit all over the place. Being of an areligious persuasion I don't find it too offensive. I am not entirely sure of the lyric's point though.

Asrul "iLham" Sany said...

the music's quite nice. ;-)p

Darius Whiteplume said...

@Asrul - there is definitely some great music on this album. Worth checking out.

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