Tag Archives: krautrock

Episode 107: Wait Underwater with Me

Sometimes I wonder if it would be more convenient to just post Spotify playlists instead of recording these episodes. Whenever I start believing this work is in vain, supporters come out of the proverbial woodwork. For example, last week a friend encouraged the audience at his concert to check out my blog. “Jonathon Smith knows your favorite bands before you do,” he announced.

Who knows? Maybe I’ve included songs from of your new favorite bands this week.


  1. “Moonshake” – Can (Future Days / United Artists / 1973)
  2. “Lists, Plans” – A Sunny Day in Glasgow (Scribble Mural Comic Journal / Notenuf / 2007)
  3. “Sea Birds” – Burning Hearts (Aboa Sleeping / Shelflife / 2009)
  4. “Crest” – The Antlers (Undersea / ANTI / 2012)
  5. “Please Let Me Wonder” – The Beach Boys (Today! / Capitol /  1965)

Radio Free Raytown – Episode #107 (8/3/12)

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Episode 99: Separate Torso from the Spine

Brian Eno, c. 1977

Apart from a couple friends, I just don’t hear many people discussing important bands like Sonic Youth, Velvet Underground or Joy Division. Even folks who pride themselves on listening to stuff outside the mainstream (Fleet Foxes, Sufjan Stevens, Sam Bean, etc.) don’t seem to have or desire a sense of musical history. I’m not asking that everyone be a musical savant like me, but it would be nice to see folks do their research and not dismiss some music simply because it sounds old.

This point in probably best illustrated in discussing the work of Brian Eno. The dude is responsible for so much huge, mega-popular music, but folks don’t seem to pay attention to him. It’s difficult to overstate his influence on bands like U2, Talking Heads, Roxy Music, David Bowie and Devo. (If you’re reading this blog, I assume you already have  an unhealthy amount these bands’ music on your harddrive.) Yet rarely do I ever hear anyone talk about Eno’s solo work.

I don’t think it takes particularly artsy person to appreciate (most of) his work. I just think it takes an inquisitive person who wants to discover the source for a favorite band’s inspiration. Alright, enough proselytizing.

Enjoy the show.

  1. “Kurt’s Rejoinder” – Brian Eno (Before and After Science/Polydor/1977)
  2. “Vamos Companeros” – Harmonia & Eno ’76 (Tracks and Traces/Gronland/2009)
  3. “Dem Wanderer” – Cluster (Sowiesoso/Sky/1976)
  4. “What Lies Before” – Highspire (Aquatic/Reverse Reverse/2010)
  5. “While the Cold Winter Waiting” – Trentemøller (The Last Resort/Poker Flat/2006)
  6. “Soul Love” – David Bowie (Stage/RCA/1978)


Radio Free Raytown – Episode #99 (2/18/12)

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Snow Day Rotation

Lately I’ve been researching Brian Eno’s 1970s side-projects and found the albums he recorded with Harmonia and Cluster. (If you’ll remember, I talked about Harmonia in my last episode.) They’re both great examples of ambient music, music intended to be enjoyed equally either in the foreground or in the background. I love this stuff. And not too far removed is some of Eno’s work with David Bowie…

So my brother-in-law lives less than a mile away. His frequent visits to our house provide many opportunities to discuss music with which he’s not familiar. He’s been reading through the February issue of Mojo on our coffee table and saw an article on David Bowie’s 1977 classic, Low. This provided fodder for a lengthy conversation, as well as getting me on a Bowie kick over the weekend that saw me rotating through eight of his albums.

Anyway, I haven’t posted a rotation in a while. Here’s what I’ve been jamming to this past week. I’ll let you play the which-of-these-is-not-like-the-other game.

  1. Sowiesoso – Cluster (Sky | 1976)
  2. Heroes – David Bowie (RCA | 1977)
  3. The Whole Love – Wilco (dBpm | 2011)
  4. Neu! 75 – Neu! (Brain | 1975)
  5. Tracks and Traces – Harmonia & Eno ’76 (Gronland | 2009)
  6. Scary Monsters (and Super Creeps) – David Bowie (RCA | 1980)
  7. Before and After Science – Brian Eno (Island | 1977)
  8. Then Play On – Fleetwood Mac (Reprise | 1969)
  9. Point of Departure – Andrew Hill (Blue Note | 1964)
  10. The Man Machine – Kraftwerk (Capitol | 1978)
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