Our October charts are topped by Sam Cooke's awesome civil rights anthem and last testament, which, as Substance McG states in the comments, should be heard by everyone on the planet.
Bonzo Dog alumnus Roger Ruskin Spear weighs in with a mostly instrumental track from one of his hard-to-find solo albums, followed by a rare Public Image track that was bootlegged by departing founder Keith Levine shortly after the band played a brilliant set at the Galleria Design Center in SF. (J Neo Marvin remembers looking down on the stage from several floors above. You could move around all over the place.) More Bonzo goodness follows with their first-ever single, followed by a tender ballad from the waggish James Murphy, one of the finest lyricists of the last decade who we know we'll be hearing more from even if LCD Soundsystem has called it quits.
Continuing down the list we have Ken Nordine with his word jazz fable of epiphany and conformity, a rare, ragged post-punk premonition from New York's False Prophets, a piece of behavior modification hypnosis from the two wackos who gave us Non and Mute, a thought-provoking catchy number from our favorite ex-Chumbawamba member, a spring-loaded song of longing from Corin Tucker's very welcome solo comeback, a poignant ode to air travel from Australia's wondrous Cannanes, and a real oddity: a 70s Brian Wilson production featuring his first wife singing what was originally one of his brother Dennis's sleaziest songs and distilling the core of sweetness inside. Makes you wish all three Wilson brothers were around today to bring out the best in each other.
A flamenco-delic instrumental from a dude we originally met on Myspace (A.J. In Evolution, we're not tired of your tune yet!) is followed by a gem from left field: Slovenian post-industrial satirical totalitarians Laibach bring out the megalomania in the Beatles' swan song. Next we revive an odd '90s collaboration between Ear Candle favorite Alan Vega, Ben Vaughn, and the late great Alex Chilton that offered yet another rough & ready setting for those sensuous Vega pipes. Lou Barlow comes through with what may be his alltime finest moment (a strummy, eerie sound collage tucked in at the end of the second Dinosaur, Jr. album), Neil Young tears your heart out with the pointless finality of death, Jimmy Smith and Booker T give us lessons on how to caress your organ correctly, and Bill Callahan lends his sonorous baritone to the cause of keeping the great Chris Knox's music alive.
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1. Sam Cooke - A Change Is Gonna Come - Portrait Of A Legend 1951-1964
2. Roger Ruskin Spear - My Goodness How (Or The Revolutionary New Concrete Mixer Show) - Unusual
3. Public Image Limited - Lou Reed, Pts 1 and 2 (Where Are You?) - Commercial Zone
4. Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band - My Brother Makes The Noises For The Talkies - Gorilla
5. LCD Soundsystem - New York, I Love You But You're Bringing Me Down - Sound Of Silver
6. Ken Nordine - Flibberty Jib - The Best of Word Jazz, Vol. 1
7. False Prophets - Baghdad Stomp - False Prophets
8. Boyd Rice & Daniel Miller - Cleanliness And Order - Darker Skratcher
9. Danbert Nobacon - Christopher Marlowe - The Library Book of the World
10. The Corin Tucker Band - Half A World Away - 1,000 Years
11. The Cannanes - Marching Song - Cannanes
12. American Spring - Fallin' in Love - Spring
13. A.J. In Evolution (Aka A.J. Fritscher) - A Trip In Barcelona - A Work In Progress
14. Laibach - I Me Mine - Let It Be
15. Ben Vaughn - Alan Vega - Alex Chilton - Do Not Do Not - Cubist Blues
16. Dinosaur Jr. - Poledo - You're Living All Over Me
17. Neil Young & Crazy Horse - Carmichael - Greendale
18. Jimmy Smith - The Champ - The Definitive Jimmy Smith
19. Booker T. & the M.G.'s - Sun King/Mean Mr. Mustard/Polythene Pam/She Came In Through The Bathroom Window/I Want You (She's So Heavy) - McLemore Avenue
20. Bill Callahan - Lapse - Stroke: Songs For Chris Knox