new to CDbaby!
ROBIN LANE AND THE CHARTBUSTERS' new CD "PIECE OF MIND"
"ROBIN LANE AND THE CHARTBUSTERS are back, nineteen years now since their last major label recording, with a terrific new release, "PIECE OF MIND." The minute you hear those jangling open chords of "ALL FALL DOWN" on the new release. the record just really pulls you in."
--Bill Delaney, host of HERE AND NOW on NPR, 2003
" Like the many shows that had enthralled millions of hypnotized fans around the country this one was approaching orgiastic levels. It was just another night for Boston's premier proto-punk-new wave-folk-chick-Christian-guitar-rock septet."
--Rock Vanity Journal, 2002
ROBIN LANE--lead vocals and guitars
ASA BREBNER-- guitars
SCOTT BAERENWALD-- bass
TIM JACKSON-- drums
PAT WALLACE-- guitars
back up vocals-- the whole band
ROBIN BATTEAU--violin: all fall down, little bird, psychotic disorders
ANDREW MAZZONE--stand-up bass: little bird -- acoustic guitar: all fall down
SUZI LEE--hammond organ: last one to know
DAVID MINEHAN--lead guitar: talk to you
produced by Robin Lane and Asa Brebner
engineered by David Minehan at Wolly Mammoth
mastered by Matthew Azevedo at M Works
all songs ASCAP
QUOTES ABOUT ROBIN LANE throughout the years:
"Lane's insights are everyday but not banal. They're delivered with the authority of a lived-in life and the kind of perpetual disillusionment that manages to make way for new illusions."
- Rolling Stone
"The feeling the music (Robin Lane and The Chartbusters) gives off is that of unrelieved foreboding, backed up by passion blindly seeking an object-any object...Robin Lane's mission...is to make life real. The terror that motivates her music is rendered palpable; so is hope; so is hope abandoned."
- Greil Marcus
"Robin Lane & the Chartbusters is given sharp distinctiveness by the vocals of the leader, whose dark, strong-but-supple voice can be ominous, desperately tender, and cuttingly illuminating. Robin is always intriguing because her sound suggests even more than the lyrics say."
- Nat Hentoff
"Those mood swings from bitterness to tenderness, have always been part of Lane's songs and she still has a way with an emotionally grabbing tune."
- Brett Milano, The Boston Globe
"Robin Lane sounds for all the world like Kitty Welles traveling down Highway 61 Revisited"
- Kit Rachlis
"Though Blondie's Deborah Harry and the Pretenders' Chrissie Hynde have had more hits and better press, Robin Lane looms as the most talented female artist to come out of New Wave rock."
- Geoffrey Himes, The Washington Post
The ROBIN LANE Biography:
Robin was born and raised in the music and entertainment world of Los Angeles. Her mother was a model and her father, KEN LANE, a songwriter and musical director for DEAN MARTIN. Early on in her teens, Robin began actively singing and performing in the nascent LA folk-rock scene. It was at this time that she began informal collaborations with the band CRAZY HORSE and DANNY WHITTEN, who Robin cites as the critical force in her development as an artist. This association led to her more formal debut - SINGING WITH NEIL YOUNG on his strong early album EVERYBODY KNOWS THIS IS NOWHERE (Robin is the other voice on the song ROUND AND ROUND). Anxious to develop her own music and by her own account too young to fit in to a wild and overwhelming music and show business scene, Robin opted to leave LA for Pennsylvania farm country and finally Cambridge, Massachusetts.
It was in Cambridge in the late 70's, in an environment of cultural and intellectual experimentation that Robin was able to integrate Punk and New Wave influences, East Coast folk, and West Coast rock in her songs and her band -- the legendary Robin Lane and The Chartbusters. The band included ex-MODERN LOVERS Asa Brebner and Leroy Radcliffe who infected Lane's songs and sensibilities even further with their unique and now historic garage sound. Robin Lane and The Chartbusters released three albums on WARNER BROTHERS Records. The first, Robin Lane And The Chartbusters was released in 1980 to widespread critical acclaim. Singles "WHEN THINGS GO WRONG" and "WHY DO YOU TELL LIES?" received extensive national airplay. Their follow-up album, Imitation Life was also well received by the critics including Nat Hentoff who described Robin's vocals on this release as "...ominous, desperately tender, and cuttingly illuminating." Subsequently, the band released a 5-song live EP entitled 5 Live. They toured extensively, opening for The Kinks, The Cars, Split Enz (later Crowded House), Hall & Oats, and XTC, but mostly crisscrossing the country headlining shows of their own.
Despite the very positive critical attention, marketing and management mistakes occurring simultaneously with Robin's conscious decision to focus on her new-born daughter cost her and the Chartbusters their record contract.
During the late 80's and early 90's, Robin turned her attention to songwriting, penning songs for other artists including SUSANNA HOFFS (formerly of THE BANGLES) who recorded Robin's "Wishing On Telstar" on her 1991 release When You're A Boy. In addition Robin performed numerous times as a singer-songwriter opening for artists including Warren Zevon, John Hiatt, Taj Mahal, Tim Finn/Crowded House, Dave Mason, Steve Earle, and T-Bone Burnett.
In 1995 Robin released CATBIRD SEAT -- her solo album and first release in over 10 years. Produced by Robin Lane and Ducky Carlisle, the album shows the charm, wit, energy and special gift for melody that have always marked Robin's work. Catbird Seat is at times stripped down rock reminiscent of Crazy Horse. At others it can best be described as a soundscape -- layers of melody and harmony with imaginative voicings -- painting a picture of sophistication and elegance. It marked an important return by a superb artist.
In 2001 Robin re-formed the Chartbusters and the following year began recording a new CD in Woolly Mammoth studios in Boston. The result, the critically acclaimed PIECE OF MIND, was released in February 2003 and has been followed by numerous shows.
from ROCK VANITY journal
by Tim Jackson, 2002
It was the 80's. Or was it the 70's? The sweating bodies that undulated in a drug and music induced ecstasy could care less. The throaty primal warbling of Robin Lane charged the air and her band the Chartbusters attacked its audience with incendiary guitar and rhythm assaults.
Like the many shows that had enthralled millions of hypnotized fans around the country this one was approaching orgiastic levels. It was just another night for Boston's premier proto-punk-new wave-folk-chick-guitar-rock septet.
Now at last, as if a frozen behemoth of another age had lumbered from the ice to rampage anew, Robin Lane and the Chartbusters is back. Together with punk-rock-God and guitar maestro and producer David Minehan the original band has set forth from the appropriately named Woolly Mammoth Studio to bring to an adoring public more remarkable gems of musical wonder.
Has Lane been fallow all these tears? Hardly. She has spent the past two decades sharpening her skills, honing her songwriting to new levels, deepening her vision, living hard and turning that experience into lyrical visions. Now, back with her boys, new and never-before recorded masterpieces are available on a CD called "PIECE OF MIND"
The astonishing chemistry of the Chartbusters that made for some of Boston rock's most brilliant live moments is back in full charge. Throughout the years the band has continued to work at their respective musical visions and has together shared moments of life and love, hope and tragedy, never losing touch with one another, never losing the keen edge of their combined musical genius. With their new CD they return like samurai warriors focused, committed and ready for battle.
Rock Adonis Asa Brebner has pulled from the ranks of Cambridge's leading guitarists the redoubtable Pat Wallace to replace the one loss to the original group, who is reported incarcerated. The intricate guitar thrashing of the Chartbusters is now deepened in texture through age and experience and approaches previously unrecognized levels of sensitivity and awareness. Despite his dwarfish physiognomy, drummer Tim Jackson provides almost poignant drum rhythms of alarming simplicity, while lumbering giant Scott Baerenwald's bass pulses with a tender sensitivity and substantive sexiness.
Grab this CD and you will feel not only the power that once enthralled millions, if not thousands. To quote English Author and Jewish Leader Israel Zangwill:
"The Past: Our cradle, not our prison; there is danger as well as appeal in its glamour. The past is for inspiration, not imitation, for continuation, not repetition."
Get yours TODAY!
BY BRETT MILANO
Robin Lane (and Willie Alexander)
Music that needs playing
TRUE TO HER MUSE: Robin Lane and the Chartbusters delivered the goods on songs old and new.
King Crimson leader Robert Fripp once summed up his band's on/off existence this way: "When the music needs playing, we come together and play it." The same thing could be said for Robin Lane and Willie Alexander, long-time local heroes who packed the Middle East on Saturday - Lane with a near-original Chartbusters line-up, Alexander with the original Boom Boom Band. Although both were major local figures in the late '70s (and had made their recording debuts a good decade earlier), their sets on Saturday looked to the future as well as the past.
For Lane, it was simply a matter of staying true to her songwriting Muse. Since dissolving the Chartbusters two decades ago, she's recorded with different bands and performed live without one. But she's never found an outfit that fits her as well as this. Co-founder Asa Brebner and new member Pat Wallace do a two-guitar sound that combines lyrical phrases with underlying bite; it's the perfect match for the tough love in Lane's lyrics. The songs she wrote in her 20s have enough emotional complexity to be worth revisiting. For one, the chorus of her hit "When Things Go Wrong" registers love and exasperation, and her voice gets both across.
Although her set was heavy on '70s material, Lane slipped in a few new numbers - notably "Longest Thinnest Thread," a ballad with Dylanesque word streams in the verses and a gorgeous falsetto hook in the chorus. And one of the '70s songs, "In My World" (it was newly recorded for their Windjam album Piece of Mind), sounds more timely now. In its original incarnation it was a protest song without a specific target; on Saturday it was dedicated to George W. Bush.