Brian Bielmann’s Top Ten

Johnny Cash The Man Comes Around

Neil Young Tonight’s The Night

Bruce Springsteen Devils And Dust

Jack Johnson In Between Dreams

Captain Beefheart Trout Mask Replica

TRex Electric Warrior

The Rolling Stones Exile On Main Street

Band Of Gypsys Band Of Gypsys

Ben Harper With The Blind Boys Of Alabama There Will Be A Light

David Bowie Station To Station

Weird War

Illuminated By The Light

Drag City

Illuminated By The Light offers a tongueful of sexy funk from a band that was once called the Scene Creamers. This third and possibly best effort by Weird War features the high-toned vocals of ex-Make Up front man Ian Svenious. And to make your ass shake that much more, Weird War has added Trans Am’s à…ber-drummer, Sebastian Thompson. Danceable and sexable, listening to Weird War can and will help you become a little bit more cool than you already are-even if you’re really cool. Sex up your sounds-get Illuminated By The Light. Fans of Make Up and Prince will funk out to this shit.




As a rule, I used to hate on rappers who smiled. I would only rock such frowning gentlemen as DMX, Geto Boys, and N.W.A. I had a soft spot in my heart for De La Soul in their Three Feet High And Rising stage, and of course Biz Markie. But for the most part, it was all guns, drugs, and money rhymes for me. Well, Common smiles, and I have to say-he’s got a reason to. He’s just released a great new album, especially for summertime. Smile away and listen to the new Common. It’s just simple, sophisticated, easy listening hip-hop with not much talk of dealing drugs or shooting people. Fans of Kanye West and Mos Def will be feeling Be.

Lab Partners

Wicked Branches


It’s great to get a CD from a band like the Lab Partners out of nowhere (actually, they’re out of Dayton, Ohio). This band has shared stages with such notable acts as Black Rebel Motorcycle Club and The Warlocks-meaning that yes, they probably are a pretty cool band. They have the same type of droning and smooth indie-rock sound as the previously mentioned acts, but they also have a subtle undertone of sultry brooding to their sound. Fans of BRMC, The Doves, and My Bloody Valentine will be very pleased with Lab Partners Wicked Branches.

Tristan Prettyman



Not to brag, but I was one of the lucky people to be at the first little house party Tristan played at-she amazed me then, and she continues to do so. Her voice is beautiful, and her guitar playing has become very sophisticated. She’s been lumped into the “surf” scene with platinum artists like Jack Johnson and Donavon Frankenreiter (she really does surf well), but I don’t think that’s her best selling point. Her best selling point is that she makes really good music and she’s hot. Look for any one of these songs to be the next big hit by the end of this summer.

Windsor For The Derby

Giving Up The Ghost

Secretly Canadian

Another band that came to me from out of nowhere is called Windsor For The Derby. This is one of those bands composed of two great musicians communicating across country and somehow making it work-like Lansing-Drieden does. This band lies somewhere along the lines of American Analog Set and Frausdots-with subtle electronics, calming harmonies, and a few rocking moments interlaced.

Various Artists

Bonnaroo Music Festival 2004


The Bonnaroo Music Festival is a huge party attended by thousands of weekend-warrior hippie types, Deadheads, rockers, trippers, college kids, and weirdos. Last year’s festival featured an eclectic mix of bands that rocked to a crowd of tens of thousands. David Byrne, Bob Dylan, The Dead (remaining members of The Grateful Dead), Steve Winwood, Kings Of Leon, Trey Anastasio, Primus, and Ween are just a few of the acts that had the crowd undulating in a patchouli heaven-like a modern-day Woodstock with good music and no Fred Durst being an asshole–look for the DVD, too! It rips.

Three More Bands To Buy …

DareDevil Jane, DareDevil Jane-Sunset Strip-style rock and roll! Just what you need if you miss G N’ R or Buckcherry-like I know we all do.

Continental, What Was Gained From What Was Lost-Beautiful, cinematic, instrumental music. Fans of Mogwai and The Album Leaf will love.

Lords Of Dogtown, Music From The Motion Picture-wicked tunes from the 70s, Hendrix, Foghat, Bowie, Sabbath, Sweet, and more!

E/P Of The Month

Cut City, GSL106-Four choppy, indie-rocking, new wave (without sounding 80s) songs on a clear disc. Good stuff, try to find it.


First Love

John Holland and Jason Hernandez

TransWorld SKATEboarding

Another banger from two of skateboarding’s best filmmakers, First Love features full sections from five different and all equally amazing skaters. Shiloh Greathouse comes correct with some crazy combos, Omar Salazar is my new favorite, Richard Angelidas is full of flow and style, Leo Romero has a banger part, Ryan Gallant skates brilliantly, and of cours, you get the best 16mm skate montages. Attention all surfers, get First Love now.

Double Down

Red Bull

Red Bull took nine of the world’s best surfers out to an unexplored island chain in Fiji and let the hell gates open. They surfed, they partied, they splashed paint on each other, and they judged each other’s shredding. All these guys and girls ripped hard, and you’ll see it. Go to and check it out.