FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
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Nick DeCicco

Our Music Year No. 327: Glen Hansard, ‘Rhythm and Repose’

Artist: Glen Hansard Title: “Rhythm and Repose” Year: 2012 Format: Spotify Grade: C Ireland’s Glen Hansard looks like a sad sack on the hand-drawn cover of “Rhythm and Repose,” his debut solo effort. It’s a window into what sort of record it is. Hansard wears his heart in an iPod exercise sling on his sleeve, […]

November 23, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,

Rio Linda outpaces Vacaville in playoff battle

RIO LINDA — Vacaville High watched Marcel Brown and host Rio Linda outrun them in a 31-21 loss in a Sac-Joaquin Section Division II playoff quarterfinals matchup, Friday. The seventh-seeded Bulldogs (8-4) had few answers for Brown, who amassed rushing 224 and three touchdowns, including his last when he took a pitch from quarterback Stephen […]

November 23, 2013 | Posted in Sports | Tagged ,

Service members from Solano County finish basic training

Air Force Reserve Airman Michelle J. Bruce graduated from basic military training at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland in San Antonio. She is the daughter of Tonya Bruce of Benicia. Army Pfc. Andrew Cade has graduated from basic combat training at Fort Jackson in Columbia, S.C. He is a 2012 graduate of Jesse Bethel High School […]

November 24, 2013 | Posted in Military | Tagged ,

Original ‘Star Trek’ episodes endure as they approach five decades

Captain’s log, Stardate 67358.2: While space remains the final frontier, watching a show that’s been off the air nearly 45 years is boldly going where many have gone before. “Star Trek” holds an iconic place in pop culture lore, a legacy that has spawned multiple spinoffs, movies and fans so devoted they have conventions. To […]

November 22, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,

Our Music Year No. 326: The Byrds, ‘Sweetheart of the Rodeo’

Artist: The Byrds Title: “Sweetheart of the Rodeo” Year: 1968 Format: Spotify Grade: B Although late country-rock frontrunner Gram Parsons plays a key role in The Byrds’ “Sweetheart of the Rodeo,” he had already split from the group before the record’s August 1968 release. Originally conceived as a mini-history of 20th century American music, the […]

November 22, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,

Our Music Year No. 325: Randy Newman, ’12 Songs’

Artist: Randy Newman Title: “12 Songs” Year: 1970 Format: Digital Grade: A- Those younger than 40 probably know Randy Newman from one of two places: his work in multiple Pixar films or this “Family Guy” clip. “Family Guy” nailed everything that makes Newman an easy target – his keen skills of observation and that goofy […]

November 21, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,

Our Music Year No. 324: Ty Segall Band, ‘Slaughterhouse’

Artist: Ty Segall Band Title: “Slaughterhouse” Year: 2012 Format: Spotify Grade: B “Slaughterhouse” qualifies as the debut title for Ty Segall Band, but, truthfully, its namesake is such a workhorse that it’s understandable if the difference is indistinguishable to some. Regardless of its artist’s name, “Slaughterhouse” is a visceral and unvarnished invocation of ’70s garage […]

November 20, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,

Our Music Year No. 323: Best Coast, ‘The Only Place’

Artist: Best Coast Title: “The Only Place” Year: 2012 Format: Spotify Grade: C+ Best Coast doesn’t make its love for the Golden State subtle. Between the duo’s name, the state animal hugging a cutout of California’s shape on the cover of “The Only Place” and the title track, it’s hard to miss the Los Angeles […]

November 18, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,

Our Music Year No. 322: Echo and the Bunnymen, ‘Ocean Rain’

Artist: Echo and the Bunnymen Title: “Ocean Rain” Year: 1984 Format: Spotify Grade: B- Few things tell listeners to take an album serious like teaming up with a 35-piece Parisian orchestra. The intent is to underscore the emotional heft that the songs on Echo and the Bunnymen’s “Ocean Rain” shoulder, but several of the compositions […]

November 18, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,

Our Music Year No. 321: Joe Satriani, ‘Flying in a Blue Dream’

Artist: Joe Satriani Title: “Flying in a Blue Dream” Year: 1989 Format: Spotify Grade: B- What the heck? Joe Satriani on harmonica? And banjo? And singing? Really? Singing? It’s all captured on 1989’s “Flying in a Blue Dream,” Satch’s third studio effort. Though an undeniably talented player, there’s a hubris in instrumental guitar albums, so […]

November 17, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,

Our Music Year No. 320: Last Exit, ‘Last Exit’

Artist: Last Exit Title: “Last Exit” Year: 1986 Format: Spotify Grade: A- The first thing to know about Last Exit’s self-titled debut album and all of the group’s material is that it is all improvised. That’s hard to believe sometimes on “Last Exit.” “Crackin’ ” swells and recedes with such precision, it’s too hard imagine […]

November 16, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,

Bulldogs hang on for win against Rocklin

VACAVILLE — The Bulldogs’ defense came up big when they needed to. Twice. On 4th-and-10, Vacaville High defensive back Drew Chitwood had an interception to ice a 26-20 victory at Zunino Stadium against the visiting Rocklin Thunder in the opening round of the Sac-Joaquin Section Division II playoff, Friday. Then he didn’t. The Bulldogs were […]

November 16, 2013 | Posted in Sports | Tagged ,

Our Music Year No. 319: Marvin Gaye, ‘Let’s Get it On’

Artist: Marvin Gaye Title: “Let’s Get it On” Year: 1973 Format: Digital (Spotify) Grade: A- Marvin Gaye is one of pop’s all-time great complex personalities, including his relationship with his father that contributed to his lifelong depression as well as his death. It’s an armchair psychologist’s view, but it makes sense then that Gaye aspired […]

November 15, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,

Service members from county graduate from basic military training

Air Force Reserve Airman 1st Class Saul Agustin graduated from basic military training at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland in San Antonio. Agustin is the son of Socorro Agustin of Benicia. Army National Guard Pvt. J. Roberto A. Da Silva graduated from basic combat training at Fort Jackson in Columbia, S.C. Da Silva is the son-in-law of […]

November 17, 2013 | Posted in Military | Tagged ,

Our Music Year No. 318: Graveyard, ‘Lights Out’

Artist: Graveyard Title: “Lights Out” Year: 2012 Format: Spotify Grade: C Many groups that tip their caps too far in the direction of nostalgia fall into a trap: Blast out of the past and get with the times or get left behind. Sweden’s hard blues rockers Graveyard attempt to find a third path with “Lights […]

November 14, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,

Our Music Year No. 317: Pearl Jam, ’11/6/00 Seattle, Washington’

Artist: Pearl Jam Title: “11/6/00 Seattle, Washington” Year: 2001 Format: Digital Grade: B Pearl Jam continued its 2000 tour after nine people were crushed to death during a performance in Roskilde, Denmark. “11/6/00 Seattle, Washington,” the only one of 72 commercially released shows from the tour to crack Billboard’s top 100, catches the group months […]

November 13, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,

Our Music Year No. 316: Metric, ‘Fantasies’

Artist: Metric Title: “Fantasies” Year: 2009 Format: Digital (Spotify) Grade: C “Fantasies” is the fourth album from Metric, fronted by Broken Social Scene’s Emily Haines. It’s a stab at moving Metric’s music mainstream, resulting in a hooky crop of arena rock songs. The best ones are the least New Wave-inspired ones. It’s no mistake the […]

November 11, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,

Our Music Year No. 315: Mastodon, ‘Call of the Mastodon’

Artist: Mastodon Title: “Call of the Mastodon” Year: 2006 Format: Vinyl (Spotify) Grade: C Atlanta’s Mastodon traveled a long road from its debut EP, “Lifesblood,” to 2011’s fifth full-length effort, “The Hunter,” and yet the two share similarities. Both are crisp, direct and lack an overall concept, which make them distinct in the sludge metal […]

November 11, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,

Our Music Year No. 314: Otis Redding, ‘Otis Blue: Otis Redding Sings Soul’

Artist: Otis Redding Title: “Otis Blue: Otis Redding Sings Soul” Year: 1965 Format: MOG Grade: B For as rapturous as Otis Redding’s performances on “Otis Blue: Otis Redding Sings Soul” can be, song selection holds it back. That isn’t to say Redding picks poor songs. Eight of “Otis Blue’s” 11 tracks are covers, but nearly […]

November 10, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,

Our Music Year No. 313: Soundgarden, ‘King Animal’

Artist: Soundgarden Title: “King Animal” Year: 2012 Format: iTunes advance stream (Spotify) Grade: B- Chris Cornell has a knack for kicking off projects with meta singles. His solo career launched with “Can’t Change Me.” His time in Audioslave, in which he teamed up with musicians from ’90s political rap rock outfit Rage Against the Machine, […]

November 09, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,

Vanden ties records in 55-6 drumming of Fairfield

FAIRFIELD — Vanden tied city records and secured its playoff standing with a 55-6 win against crosstown rival Fairfield at Schaefer Stadium, Friday night.. The Vikings moved to 7-3 overall and 4-1 in the Solano County Athletic Conference with the win, while the Falcons finished the season at 2-8 overall and 0-5 in league. For […]

November 09, 2013 | Posted in Sports | Tagged ,

Eminem grows up, ’36 Chambers’ turns 20

Sequels often sound awesome, but turn out bad, like a deep-fried bacon cheeseburger with Krispy Kreme doughnuts for buns. Hollywood has gotten overzealous with the sequel craze, including the unending parade of parts in the Avengers series. Sequel albums are an even more ghastly breed. The team photo for best part-two albums is all trophy […]

November 08, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,

Our Music Year No. 312: John Frusciante, ‘Curtains’

Artist: John Frusciante Title: “Curtains” Year: 2005 Format: Digital Grade: B One in a batch of six albums former Red Hot Chili Peppers’ guitarist John Frusciante recorded during a lull between RHCP duties in 2004, “Curtains” is unexpectedly fragile and tender. Frusciante recorded the majority of the album at the foot of his couch with […]

November 08, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,

Airmen from county complete basic training

Air Force Reserve Airman 1st Class Saul Agustin graduated from basic military training at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland in San Antonio. Agustin is the son of Socorro Agustin of Benicia. Air Force Airman Justin M. Doty graduated from basic military training at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland in San Antonio. Doty is the son of Marissa […]

November 10, 2013 | Posted in Military | Tagged ,

Our Music Year No. 311: Death from Above 1979, ‘You’re a Woman, I’m a Machine’

Artist: Death From Above 1979 Title: “You’re a Woman, I’m a Machine” Year: 2004 Format: MOG Grade: A- Named after an exchange between a human and a Cylon from the reimagined “Battlestar Galactica” television miniseries, “You’re a Woman, I’m a Machine” is the only album thus far from Toronto-based noise rock duo Death from Above […]

November 07, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,

Our Music Year No. 310: Enslaved, ‘RIITIIR’

Artist: Enslaved Title: “RIITIIR” Year: 2012 Format: Spotify (Spotify) Grade: C+ Norway’s Enslaved deliver the group’s 12th platter, “RIITIIR,” which finds the progressive black metal stalwarts pushing further into prog territory. The songs are longer than the band’s previous material and, as a result, have the effect of feeling cumbersome. The jarring juxtaposition of gruff […]

November 06, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,

Our Music Year No. 309: The Zombies, ‘Odessey and Oracle’

Artist: The Zombies Title: “Odessey and Oracle” Year: 1968 Format: Spotify (Spotify) Grade: A- The massive, enduring popularity of “Time of the Season” will forever eclipse The Zombies’ “Odessey and Oracle,” which is a bit of a shame as it’s an enjoyable, consistent record without that one massive hit. It’s also a good standard-bearer for […]

November 04, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,

Our Music Year No. 308: Ugly Casanova, ‘Sharpen Your Teeth’

Artist: Ugly Casanova Title: “Sharpen Your Teeth” Year: 2002 Format: Digital (Spotify) Grade: C+ If the music of Modest Mouse didn’t give the impression on its own, Isaac Brock is a dude who likes to serve up something you’ve seen before with a bit of a twist. It starts with his voice, which sounds like […]

November 04, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,

Our Music Year No. 307: Quicksand, ‘Slip’

Artist: Quicksand Title: “Slip” Year: 1993 Format: Spotify Grade: B- If Tool were a feral, underfed animal taught to play guitars, it might sound something like Quicksand does on “Slip,” the New York group’s 1993 debut album. Quicksand shows all the bluster and muscularity of the Los Angeles metal group, but in leaner packages. Only […]

November 03, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,

Our Music Year No. 306: Kendrick Lamar, ‘Good Kid, M.A.A.D. City’

Artist: Kendrick Lamar Title: “Good Kid, M.A.A.D. City” Year: 2012 Format: Spotify Grade: A- That Kendrick Lamar’s journey through “Good Kid, M.A.A.D. City,” his major-label debut, leaves him so optimistic is a shock. Skirting the line between fiction and reality, Lamar weaves a story about himself as a teenager living with alcoholics, doing drugs, robbery, […]

November 02, 2013 | Posted in Entertainment-local | Tagged ,
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