What would a fourth Big Star album have sounded like? A rare and historic artifact of the mid 1970’s the Prix Historix album is finally out on HoZac Records. Prix was the postscript to Big Star, and started off after Tommy Hoehn and Jon Tiven had both been part of the legendary power pop band’s final incarnation. Tommy contributed to the final album Sister Lovers/3rd, and Tiven filled out the last live version of the band on their 1974 tour. The following year the pair recruited Alex Chilton and Chris Bell, and then added Rick Clark on bass as they headed into the legendary Ardent Studios in Memphis to record. Listening to this it sounds like a lost Big Star record with denser production and heavier guitars.
Listen to “Girl” and “She Might Look My Way” and you’ll hear those classic sharp melodies and ringing guitar riffs. “Love You Tonight (Saturday’s Gone)” is another grand mid tempo ballad similar to Radio City, “Take Me Home And Make Me Like It” (one of the Alex Chilton tracks from the Tiven-produced Bach’s Bottom) is another gem; and Tiven’s “Every Time I Close My Eyes” as another potential A-side hit. The band never released anything more than an EP single, and it was previously only available as a Japanese import. There is still quite a bit of filler added, but having this music remastered and available makes it worth the trip. Since this re-release and new interest in the band, Tiven has reformed Prix with Sid Herring (The Gants) and plans to make new music next year. For Big Star fans this is essential.
The Rubinoos “The LP Collection Vol.1”
In the mid seventies, power pop was at a low ebb, The Raspberries and Dwight Twilley were considered leaders of a genre that was losing steam with the record buying public despite notable exceptions (Fotomaker, Hudson Brothers, Ray City Rollers). But The Rubinoos came into this environment with a bubble gum twist to each catchy melody played with a tongue-in-cheek innocence. Album tracks like “Peek A Boo” and “Rock and Roll is Dead” showed both playful humor and solid musicianship. Its hard to find a dud among the fine material here that deserves re-discovering.
This claims to be the definitive vinyl collection of The Rubinoos first 3 classic albums (“The Rubinoos”, “Back To The Drawing Board” and “The Basement Tapes”, which was never released on vinyl before), remastered and adorned with bonus tracks. This collection stops prior to the 1983 Todd Rundgren produced comeback album “Party of Two,” which I expect will be on volume 2. Very Highly Recommended.