(Diversions, a recurring feature on Aquarium Drunkard, catches up with our favorite artists as they wax on subjects other than recording and performing.)
Last month Of Montreal multi-instrumentalist Jamey Huggins released his solo debut A Parallax I via OM’s long-time label home, Polyvinyl Records. Recorded under the nom de tune James Husband, the recording spans five years and multiple locations including James’ (until recently) adopted home of Sweden. At twelve tracks Parallax moves from lo-fi cassette recordings reminiscent of the Pollard/Sprout pop of GBV, on to analog and digital recordings embodying the the past 4 decades of pop music. Below Huggens discusses a mutual favorite: Roxy Music. Tune in next Friday during the second hour of the AD Show on SIRIUS XMU as Husband guest DJs.
I love rock n’ roll, but at one point or another, we’ve all overdosed on The Beatles, burned out on Bolan, and tuned out The Stones. When this over exposure to our favorite rock icons periodically exhausts & overwhelms us, there’s one sure fire palette cleanser of a band to re-ignite the teenage pilot light in the pit of every expanding rock n’ roll gut on the globe. ROXY MUSIC are guaranteed to kick start a lull in the party at any bar, wedding, or after-fest, period. Try this…next time you see someone yawn at a bar mitzvah or bachelorette party, pop on “Virginia Plain” & watch everyone in the room’s foot start tapping and the dance floor double.
It’s not that Roxy were the best band of the 70’s or had the greatest impact or highest output, but when you have Bowie, Lou, & Iggy looking to you for style tips, all the California folkies’ beards blown off by a glam slam from left field, and Jagger & Co. just flat out jealous…you know you’re doin’ something right. …And, oh yeah, throw ENO on the switchboard just to spice things up for a couple of years to help get things off the ground! ENO, Manzanera, Andy Mackay, Paul Thompson…..a string of touring personnel, even little Eddie Jobson (Eno’s unfortunate teenage ‘replacement’) all contributed great performances, but let’s face it…BRYAN FERRY IS ROXY MUSIC. Part sensitive artist, part devastating lady killer. Frightening & feline. Dead-pan & Debonair. Widow’s peak, tongue in cheek. He is like Eddie Munster all grown up & ready to pick your daughters up for the dance!
With Roxy, performance was everything…delivery, essential. However, for those of us unfortunately born well after their brief reign at the top of the pops, the albums & rare videotapes must suffice. Since picking only 5 top tracks is utterly unfair, I’ve devised a simple solution that illustrates the band’s powerful sense of presentation perfectly. One thing Bryan Ferry knew how to do in the studio was to sequence an album to bust right through the front gate. So, my top 5 Roxy tracks are all No.1’s! Not in chart listing, but track order of the first 5 Albums. These recordings are all works of pop art & true heart. Enough set-up. Check out these classics. words/ james husband
MP3: James Husband :: A Grave In The Gravel
+ + James Husband’s # 1’s after the jump…
.: Roxy Music :: Re-Make/Re-Model (from Roxy Music)
.: Roxy Music :: Do The Strand (from For Your Pleasure)
.: Roxy Music :: Street Life (from Stranded)
.: Roxy Music :: The Thrill of it All (from Country Life)
.: Roxy Music :: Love Is The Drug (from Siren)