Rockbird was Harry's second solo album, and came four years after the split of Blondie in 1982. Harry had largely put her music career on hold during the mid-1980s in order to look after boyfriend Chris Stein who had been diagnosed with a serious illness. The album was produced by Seth Justman, a key member of the J. Geils Band. Released in November 1986, there were four variations of the album artwork with the lettering in either green, orange, pink and yellow (with slight variations due to printing techniques).
Jazz singer/songwriter Michael Franks is an artist most jazz fans feel strongly about one way or another. His unique, romantic poet-cum-laid-back hipster approach to jazz signing is breezy, light, and languid. It's also uniquely his own, though deeply influenced by Brazilian jazz, bossa, and samba. Time Together, his first recording of new material in five years – and his debut for Shanachie – is unlikely to change anyone's opinion of him, but that doesn't mean this is a rote recording. Time Together is an airy, groove-ridden summer travelog that ranges from St. Tropez and New York to Paris, France, and Egypt; it journeys through the nostalgic past and finds space in the present moment, with cleverly notated, languorous, ironic observations about life. Franks split the production and arranging duties between Charles Blenzig, Gil Goldstein, Chuck Loeb, Scott Petito, and Mark Egan. The rest of the international cast on this polished 11-song set includes old friends and new faces David Spinozza, Mike Mainieri, David Mann, Eric Marienthal, Till Brönner, Alex Spiagin, Jerry Marotta, Billy Kilson, Romero Lubambo, and backing vocalist Veronica Nunn.
Thanks to its stripped-down, lean production, Vitalogy stands as Pearl Jam's most original and uncompromising album. While it isn't a concept album, Vitalogy sounds like one. Death and despair shroud the album, rendering even the explosive celebration of vinyl "Spin the Black Circle" somewhat muted. But that black cloud works to Pearl Jam's advantage, injecting a nervous tension to brittle rockers like "Last Exit" and "Not for You," and especially introspective ballads like "Corduroy" and "Better Man." In between the straight rock numbers and the searching slow songs, Pearl Jam contribute their strangest music – the mantrafunk of "Aye Davanita," the sub-Tom Waits accordion romp of "Bugs," and the chilling sonic collage "Hey Foxymophandlemama, That's Me." Pearl Jam are at their best when they're fighting, whether it's Ticketmaster, fame, or their own personal demons.
Vs. is the second studio album by the American rock band Pearl Jam, released on October 19, 1993 through Epic Records. After a relentless touring schedule in support of their 1991 debut album Ten, Pearl Jam headed into the studio in early 1993 facing the challenge of following up the commercial success of its debut. The resulting album, Vs., featured a rawer and more aggressive sound compared with the band's previous release. It was the band's first collaboration with producer Brendan O'Brien, and their first album with drummer Dave Abbruzzese. Vs. occupied the number one spot on the Billboard 200 chart for five weeks, the longest duration for a Pearl Jam album. The album has been certified seven times platinum by the RIAA in the United States.
Nirvana's Nevermind may have been the album that broke grunge and alternative rock into the mainstream, but there's no underestimating the role that Pearl Jam's Ten played in keeping them there. Nirvana's appeal may have been huge, but it wasn't universal; rock radio still viewed them as too raw and punky, and some hard rock fans dismissed them as weird misfits. In retrospect, it's easy to see why Pearl Jam clicked with a mass audience – they weren't as metallic as Alice in Chains or Soundgarden, and of Seattle's Big Four, their sound owed the greatest debt to classic rock. With its intricately arranged guitar textures and expansive harmonic vocabulary, Ten especially recalled Jimi Hendrix and Led Zeppelin. But those touchstones might not have been immediately apparent, since – aside from Mike McCready's Clapton/Hendrix-style leads – every trace of blues influence has been completely stripped from the band's sound. Though they rock hard, Pearl Jam is too anti-star to swagger, too self-aware to puncture the album's air of gravity.
Songs of Faith and Devotion is the eighth album by Depeche Mode, released in 1993. The album incorporated more guitar textures than previous releases. Upon its release, Songs of Faith and Devotion reached number one on both the UK and US album charts. To support the album, Depeche Mode embarked on the fourteen-month Devotional Tour.
American Fool is the fifth album released by John Mellencamp, released under the stage name John Cougar in 1982. The album was his commercial breakthrough, reaching number one on the Billboard 200 chart in 1982 and becoming the best-selling album of that year.
Dionne Warwick enjoyed a career revival in the late '70s and 1980s when she teamed with such producers as Barry Manilow, Barry Gibb, and even Luther Vandross. They returned her to the elaborately arranged and structured soul-tinged pop that had marked her finest hits, although the lyrics and compositions weren't as consistent as they were during her Burt Bacharach/Hal David period. This album collects the biggest hits from this second phase of Warwick's career, including such triumphs as "Deja Vu" and "I Know I'll Never Love This Way Again"; it also introduced a new tune, "Take Good Care of You And Me".
Vienna is the fourth studio album by British new wave band Ultravox, first released on Chrysalis Records on 11 July 1980. The album was the first made by Ultravox with their best-known line-up, after Midge Ure had taken over as lead vocalist and guitarist following the departures of John Foxx and Robin Simon, and it was also the group's first release for Chrysalis. Vienna was produced by renowned German producer Conny Plank who had also produced Ultravox's previous album Systems of Romance, and mixed at Plank's studio near Cologne, Germany. The album had a slow start, but the release in January 1981 of the title track as the third single from the album heralded the band's commercial breakthrough worldwide and led to healthy sales throughout 1981. Vienna peaked at number 3 in the UK Albums Chart and reached the top ten in Australia, New Zealand and several European countries.
In an odd bit of programming, Columbia placed the ballads from Miles Davis' February 12, 1964, concert on My Funny Valentine and the uptempo romps on this LP. Davis, probably a bit bored by some of his repertoire and energized by the teenage Tony Williams' drumming, performed many of his standards at an increasingly faster pace as time went on. These versions of "So What," "Walkin'," "Four," "Joshua," "Seven Steps to Heaven," and even "There Is No Greater Love" are remarkably rapid, with the themes quickly thrown out before Davis, George Coleman, and Herbie Hancock take their solos. Highly recommended and rather exciting music, it's one of the last times Davis would be documented playing a full set of standards.