RIP buriedonmars.wordpress.com

Hello, WordPress fam!

I trust that all is good in your neck of the woods and you’re all having the hap-hap-happiest Christmas since they last aired A Christmas Story on TBS.

I have a bit of happy/sad news for buriedonmars.wordpress.com. It is coming to end. In fact, you’re reading the very last post from this site right now!

Yes, so long! Farewell! It is time to say goodbye!

Yeah, this has been coming for some time. You might have noticed that the ol’ blog is in need of some serious repair. Real-life got to be a bit of a shitshow last summer, so when buriedonmars.com came up for renewal this past August, I allowed it to lax. The site reverted back to a free WordPress theme sometime in October which explains the banner featuring some broad doing yoga in the mountains. I look at this site now and all I see are broken links, a number of series I started but never finished, and a site that lacks focus in general.

I know, a renewal of buriedonmars.com will fix some of the issues, but not all of them.

So, I’m taking this as an opportunity to begin anew. Yes, I’m NOT leaving WordPress but I am changing my location.

I am really bummed out how this blog is all over the place. I started this site with a focus on reviewing Blu-rays before switching to music, then to straight movie reviews, back to music, to a little of everything. I have a tendency to want to write about everything and I end up burning out. Doing weekly reviews on Tragically Hip albums AND James Bond movies was way too much for me, and it looked like it was never going to end there for a while.

But, I learned so much from writing this blog. I’ve tried doing daily posts, writing on current events, short & punchy reviews, and long technical ones. I experimented with just about everything I wanted to on here.

The process I enjoyed the most was the one I used for The Hip series. I took a full week with each album and really absorbed them. I discovered what I didn’t like at first I’d come to love later. And, sometimes, what I did like at first got on my nerves later. I can never unhear that damn cowbell in 50 Mission Cap, but I’m so stoked to have finally figured out the meaning behind those lyrics!

So, that is what I’m going to apply to my NEW site, canadiangrooves.ca. The focus will be on music from Canadian Artists in my preferred genres of rock, metal, and blues. It will mostly be album reviews with some book and movie reviews that fit within the site’s theme. And, there will be no more than one weekly post (sometimes less) as to not burn out.

I appreciate any and all who do end up joining me there. The site just says “coming soon” right now, but it will be up fully by the New Year. It is sad for me to have to let this site go, but with all that I learned here, I’m way more thankful that it existed.

Rest Easy, buriedonmars.wordpress.com

Rest Easy, Dusty Hill (1949-2021)

I knew I was going to listen to ZZ Top during this morning’s commute. I needed their groove as I entered the world’s first full day without them. Yes, ZZ Top will carry on with Dusty Hill’s long time tech, Elwood Francis, filling in but we all know it won’t be the same.

I have full confidence in Billy Gibbons and Franks Beard’s abilities to continue to perform top shelf hard rockin’ southern boogie, but it won’t be the same with Hill’s powerful voice, spinning guitar, and waggling long beard missing.

Now, which album will I listen too? It was early this AM in a pre-coffee fog that I looked at my full set of ZZ on CD and grabbed Eliminator and Afterburner. For most kids my age the synth heavy/commercial peak era was my introduction to the band. Their videos were featured regularly on Video Hits and it is were I fell in love with their sound.

I almost had one of their albums back then too. Almost.

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If I wanted to get an album in the ’80s I had a major hurdle to jump. Being a kid with no money of my own, and there only being one turn table in the living room, I had to convince my Mom to buy it. Michael Jackson, Cyndi Lauper, and Huey Lewis were easy sells compared to the “sleezy” ZZ Top. (Mom had a similar hang up with David Lee Roth.) I almost convinced her with TV Dinners but song wasn’t as big of a hit like the other singles from Eliminator. I think Video Hits only played it twice before it was gone.

I didn’t gain full control of my music until ’89/’90 when I started having money of my own and a cassette player in my bedroom. Eliminator and Afterburner became early entries in my collection. I wish I had kept those cassettes but they would serve no purpose other than to make for a cool photo on this blog. Well, you will have to settle for the CDs I upgraded them to.

But are those the right albums to choose for today?

Hill sang lead vocals on many ZZ Top tunes, but it was usually only one per album. After the success of Tush on Fandango!, they reserved a big rocker for him to belt out on their following albums. Ten Dollar Man, Hi Fi Mama, Party On The Patio. It became a thing.

I remembered Hill sang I Got The Six on Eliminator but I couldn’t remember if he sang one on Afterburner. Again, early AM pre-coffee fog. Plus, with the heavy synth on those albums, I’m not afraid to admit how at times I have no idea what is Hill/Beard and what is a Korg and drum machines. With little time to think, they became my choice.

For some reason, I wanted Afterburner first and as I played it down I realized that any ZZ Top album was right to salute Dusty with. Although Gibbons sings lead for the first four tunes, Hill harmonizes along with him whenever the moment is right. He does for Gibbons what Michael Anthony did for David Lee Roth. Elevating the vocals.

Gibbons is a good, but not great singer. You don’t have to be for rock ‘n roll. Hill was a great singer who knew how to thicken Gibbons voice when a song needed it. His support was prevalent on the ’70s albums but I was surprised to find how subtle and effective the technique is on Afterburner. It is surprising what you can find in a song when you are looking for it. Even if you have heard it countless times before.

After Gibbons wrapped up Rough Boy with a guitar solo that never fails to make my skin vibrate, the next tune, Can’t Stop Rockin’ kicks in. Shit, this is the song Hill sang on. What a brilliant bout of remembrance to hit me in the face at 6:45 AM. Because Hill didn’t stop rockin’ no mater what anyone did or said until he couldn’t do it anymore. Darn right I cranked this! You crank too, please. Rest easy, Dusty.

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Collection Update | July 17th, 2021

Oh my gaaaaad! I’m buying music again? Well… yeah. Deal with it.

I headed over to Canadian Tire this morning with Sarah to pick out a new faucet for the kitchen. We found exactly what we needed within a few minutes and our exit timed nicely with the opening of our local mission thrift. Hmmm…. it might be a good idea to see what music they have. I mean, I’ll need something to listen to while I install it, right?

All of the CD were $2 moosebucks each, unless you spot a red tag. Then it was 75 cents.

The ’90s metal collection got a nice boost:

Pantera’s The Great Southern Trendkill isn’t my fav of theirs but it was the last I needed to complete the collection. And someone dumped out of their Tool collection. I never been much of a fan in the past but I’ll give the CDs a spin. Sometimes having the album gives you a different perspective. I don’t know why. Anyway, if I don’t enjoy these I’m sure someone in our group will appreciate them.

The Canadian collection got a nice boost as well:

The Burton Cummings album is a live concert from the ’90s. It looks like he performs most of his hits on it. I have already listened to The Northern Pikes Neptune and it is solid. Sarah’s keen eye spotted Skydiggers Northern Shore. It is a Deluxe edition with 3 extra CDs of music.

Crazy! If I read the internet right, this was a special order set that was only available on their website in 2012.

I found a couple of soundtracks:

I still haven’t seen Trainspotting but I know a lot of the music from it. Animal House is a pure classic.

Next:

I’ve never seen this John Lennon tribute album before. Should make for an interesting listen. Cheap Trick does Cold Turkey on it. Tom Petty’s Southern Accents and Billy Joel’s River of Dreams are not best album from either artist, but both are fine for a cheap CD addition to the collection.

Rod Stewart CDs are fairly easy to find:

As long as it isn’t one of those albums loaded with old standards, I’ll add it. Vagabond Heart has Broken Arrow and The Motown Song on it so… must buy? Yeah, I think so.

And here is what Sarah got:

I remember buying Adrenalize on cassette when it first came out. I listened to the first two songs on my Walkman, removed the cassette, then gave it to my Sister. I’ve always liked the name Was (Not Was). I don’t really know who they are.

And I found a four back of Jackie Chan DVDs!

Hopefully the quality is good and they don’t look like arse! meh, they’ll still be fun watches even if they do.

Oh yeah, and installing the faucet was a lot easier than trying to figure out what was wrong with the old one yesterday.

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[Random] R.I.P. Kitchen Faucet

I didn’t have time to write much of a post today as I wrestled with the kitchen sink faucet this afternoon. It started dripping a while ago and the temporary fix was to place the tap square in the center to turn it off.

We had a couple of leftovers from the bathroom renos to return to Lowes (hardware store) this morning, and while there I grabbed a new cartridge and set of gaskets to fix the leak. Moen faucets come with a lifetime guarantee, so you can go to any hardware store that sells them for free parts. I picked up a new cartridge and gaskets and set to work on it after lunch.

The instructions and YouTube videos all made taking the tap apart look easy, but after 16 years of service, the integral workings turned out to be corroded. The thing is disintegrating from the inside. Dang.

It will probably be a pain to get a free replacement for it from Moen and we are going to need a kitchen faucet sooner than later. I’ll probably be installing a new one tomorrow.

Well, I did make time for some fun today with an appearance on The Vinyl Collection this tonight. I talked about all of my recent pickups and there are a few surprises backed into the episode as well. At least that was good times!

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[Random] You’re So Vain | Carly Simon | AKA: Listening To A Song You’ve Only Heard Before

I’ve heard You’re So Vain by Carly Simon a million times before. In doctor’s offices, grocery stores, my Mom never switching the radio away from Sudbury’s best mix of soft rock from the ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s, CJMX. But yesterday was the first time I listened to the song on my newly acquired copy of No Secrets. Isn’t it weird when you do this? I thought I knew this song and it turns out I don’t.

I never noticed that eerie bass intro before. Did they not play it on the radio? Perhaps the DJ usually talks over it. The bigger miss is Mick Jagger singing back up vocals. How could I have noticed that before? I thought maybe the radio used a single version that is different from the album track but it appears to not be the case.

Anyway, solid tune. Great lyrics with coffee and Nova Scotia getting a shout out!

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Collection Update | July 14th, 2021 | AKA: Road Trip, Part Deux! The Quest for Less Money!

Yesterday we went walking in the jungle and today we took on a concrete one, Toronto. Our goal? To buy more records! I know, I know, I know. We just went record shopping a few days ago, but this will be our last chance to hit some Toronto stores for a while as our holidays are wrapping up soon. And, looking back at my files, I can see that it has been THREE YEARS since we last visited Sonic Boom or Kops in T.O. Where does the time go?!?!

We arrived in the Big Smoke and found some parking just before noon. We headed to Kops first since they were already open at 11AM:

Kops is in a new location on Queen Street West since we last visited and I got to say, HUGH improvement! Their previous location didn’t have the best lighting and it was near impossible for people to squeeze past each other in the aisles. Now, it is as bright as an Apple Store with plenty of room. What I love about Kops is their section dedicated to Canadian music. It works on me as I end up finding a lot more than I am looking for:

All Canadian! We have such great music here. That Frank Marino album cooks. COOKS, I say. I was blown away (yet again!) by his guitar playing. I grabbed the BTO live album because I wanted to hear them play Mountain’s Mississippi Queen live. They did not disappoint. That Turner can really sing! There are two new songs on the album that sounded really fake live. I looked it up on Wikipedia, and yep, they were actually studio tracks with crowd noise added. Boy, was everyone messing with their live albums!?!?!

I haven’t listened to the Saga albums yet but I’m looking forward to it. We’re spinning The Northern Pikes right now, and it is freakin’ good. The Pursuit of Happiness albums I grabbed for two different versions of I’m An Adult Now. Because, why not? It is a great tune. I never thought I’d get a chance to own Shadowy Men On A Shadowy Planet’s Having An Average Weekend, but here it is on a reissue of Savvy Show Stoppers. Finding this stuff was the best part of the day!

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I did visit some other sections of the store and found:

Stiff Upper Lip completes my North American AC/DC albums on vinyl. It will upset some people when I say my collection is complete without having Blow Up Your Video on vinyl but too bad. You go buy that hot mess, lol

Royal Blood’s middle child How Did We Get So Dark? completes the set until they release more. So, with two collections finished, why not start more? Curtis Mayfield is an artist I have been wanting to get into more as I have always admired him from afar. So, why not start with his two biggest albums, Curtis and the soundtrack to Super Fly? For the Raconteurs, I only need their 2nd album to complete that set. Now, onto Sonic Boom:

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Sorry for the glare. I’m not much of a photographer.

I got to say… I was a little disappointed with this visit as I only got two items:

I guess it is about time I lucked out a bit.

George Harrison’s Brainwashed is his last album from 2004. It is a great one and I rarely see it out there! And who doesn’t love Carly? You’re So Vain sold a plethora of copies of No Secrets. So at least they were quality additions to the collection!

But, man… the place seemed to be a bit tapped out of used stock. I looked for all of my usual bands but…

Plenty of new stuff on the shelves but it was pricey! $56 for Dire Straits On Every Street? Maybe that is why they had 6 copies of it still. $40.99 for the Sabbath with Dio reissues? Not $39.99. $40.99. Bizarre.

Plus, the guy behind the counter was playing his own music. Not music he owns. Music from his band. I thought it sounded like crap but people were coming up to him asking where they could buy the album. They were telling him it sounded like New Order, and Sarah said the same. So, what do I know? He was directing people to his band’s website and I had flashbacks to the convo Ladano was having with Robert Lawson on The Lebrain Train. Both have experience working in a record store and both said the only rule for playing music in the store was it had to be sold in the store. I think they both would have fired Fake New Order Dude.

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[Random] Happy Trails!

Sarah and I had a great hike today logging in over 10 km!

We’ve been on holidays for the past couple of weeks and we always set some time aside to check out the nature trails in York and the surrounding regions. The bathroom renos and getting our arses handed to us during the 2nd round of Covid 19 vaccine has made the trips more infrequent this year, but we had a corker of a day today. We drove 20 minutes to the Little Rouge Creek Woodland trail and soaked in Mama Nature:

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Beyond the fence is a drop to the creek. There is a sign warning of erosion and to not get too close to the edge. As you can see by the trampled on area, most people ignore the warning while they hop the fence to get an ultimate view or take a spectacular selfie. It reminded me of Fascinating Horror’s YouTube video about people falling into the Grand Canyon while attempting to do the same.

I stayed safe and enjoyed the view from the look out, lol

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Collection Update | July 8th, 2021 | AKA: Road Trip!

It was lousy weather today but that couldn’t stop us for making our yearly road trip to Cobourg Ontario for a visit to Zap Records! We made loose plans to go today since it was a full two weeks since our 2nd shot and our bathroom renos are 98% done. The driving was a little white knuckle-ish at times, but we took our time and made it through the rain.

Since it was a weekday, we made sure to bring some change for the parking meter only to find out they don’t use change any longer! You have to download an app onto your phone and pay with a credit card. I guess we just take for granted that everyone has smart phones and plastic money these days. Anyway, this is what I got:

I found some FM and Nash the Slash I haven’t seen anywhere else. Aaron over at Keeps Me Alive is sending me FM’s Tonight on CD already, but this is GREEN vinyl. I couldn’t pass it up! The Motorhead album is a special two disc version of their first, On Parole. The rest is Saga’s World’s Apart, West, Bruce, Laige’s Whatever Turns You On, and two Mountain LPs, Avalanche and Twin Peaks which is a double live. Finally, The Rolling Stones Made In The Shade which I thought was a live album. Turns out to be a compilation. Oops. Well, at least it is a good one!

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On our way back from Cobourg we stopped in at Kops Records in the ‘shwa and I think I did alright:

The Crazy Horse album is without Neil. I’ve streamed it before and it is pretty darn good. I’ve never seen it on vinyl before, so I thought I’d better snag it. They had Aldo Nova, Saga, and a bunch of Max Webster for solid prices, so they’re mine now. I picked up another copy of FM’s Black Noise in hopes that it would sound a little cleaner than the copy I have, but it is mostly fail. Well, it should make for a good gift for only $3 moosebucks.

They also started selling used CDs again. I keep telling myself that I can’t buy them because I don’t really have the room, but the prices are too hard to ignore. Pay no attention to the price tags because they had a whack deal where you if you bought $15 moosebucks worth, they would drop it to 10. So, the three Beatles Anthology albums had $10 moosebucks each on them, but they only charged me $20. Two of them were still sealed! Geez, I remember when they were $35-40 moosebucks a piece back in the day. Anyway, there is too much to go through it all. Just look at the photo and fire away if you have any questions!

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[Random] Rising Power | AC/DC fans.net Houseband

One of my favourite YouTube channels is acdcfansDOTnet and they have been scorching hot lately. For the last two years (or so) they have been forced to post their cover songs on facebook as the powers that be on YouTube keep pulling their work down. Not only have they finally been able to work out a deal to post on the platform, but the singer they added a few month ago can mimic Brian Johnson to near perfection. They have been going deep on the Johnson era as a result, playing the songs that they real deal has ignored for decades.

I know how cover songs are not for everyone, but I find them endlessly fun to watch. Be it a new take or an attempt to mimic the original as closely as one can, I just love to see it when it is done well.

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Collection Update | July 3rd, 2021

Just a couple of records came in this week, both have been pre-ordered for a while.

Every good Tom Petty fan knows how he was not happy with his soundtrack/tie in album for the film She’s The One. I have yet to see the film (I hear it is not very good) but, I’m love the music from it! Many of the songs on the original album were leftovers from the Wildflowers sessions, an album that already received and extensive rerelease last year.

None of the Wildflowers songs are repeated on Angel Dream (Songs And Music From The Motion Picture She’s The One). This album has all of the non-Wildflowers tunes remixed (Reimaged is how thee album phrases it, but they are re-mixes) and four new songs. So, the answer is yes. Even if you have the original She’s The One soundtrack and the extended edition of Wildflowers, you still need this.

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The other album that came in is Hound Dog Taylor’s Natural Boogie. I thought I would never own a copy of it.

Hound Dog Taylor was discovered late in life and he only recorded two albums before he passed away from lung cancer at the age of 60 in 1975. I have his first album, but have not been able to luck into getting his second, Natural Boogie until this week. Thank the vinyl gods for reissues!

I’ll be talking a bit more about these albums later tonight on Bill’s show starting at 8pm. Sarah will also be there to talk about her Peter Murphy records. Stop by and say Hi if you can!

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