The news waits for no one -- at least that's what we read somewhere -- so it's perfectly understandable that you, the reader, might have missed out on a musical tidbit, breaking news about your favorite venue, or one of our rants.
So enjoy this digest-style sampling of some of our biggest stories from the week of Dec. 10-14.
Local shock rock legend and all Rock N' Roll Hall of Fame inductee Alice Cooper hosted his 12th annual Christmas Pudding holiday bash at Comerica Theatre in downtown Phoenix last weekend. All proceeds benefited his Solid Rock Foundation. This year Cooper featured Pudding alum Don Felder, L.A Guns, Sebastian Bach, host John O' Hurley, and magician Murray SawChuck took the stage.
While the line-up of openers may have not been all that exciting on paper, Cooper had some tasty ingredients in his recipe this year (See what I did there?) closing out the night with a 10-song performance which featured superstar actor Johnny Depp and guitar virtuoso Orianthi backing him up.
I initially conceived this list as a starting point to further explore one of the biggest albums of the year: "Ayo, if you liked that Grimes record, this shit is pretty good, too." The Korean and Japanese pop influence on Visions made it easy to like, but it was the gauzy textures, unconventional song structures, and understated vocal subtleties that made it addictive.
Last year's weird electronic pop champ was synth theorist John Maus, and now Claire Boucher is an even more prominent figure in the legion of programmers, producers and reformed noiseniks stretching familiar forms. While they might not sit comfortably with every Grimes obsessive, these five albums pulled from various experimental electronic sources to each make a memorably skewed engagement with pop in 2012.
It seems the record store world is in a constant state of shuffle in Phoenix.
Recent months have seen Zia Records move up the road to its biggest location yet, Eastside Records reborn on Forest Ave., and the birth of Scottsdale's The Record Room, which joins wax shack stalwarts like Stinkweeds and Revolver Records in providing vinyl hounds ample crate digging grounds.
But where there's ups, there's downs: Hoodlums in Tempe closed its doors this fall after 14 years, and now Stephen Wilkinson, owner of Rockzone Records in Tempe, says he's closing his store down this month.
--Jason P. Woodbury
So, hey, The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame went ahead and announced their Class of 2013, which this time around includes Rush, Public Enemy, Randy Newman and someone called the "Disco Queen," Donna Summer. Those who were nominated but didn't make the cut included Kraftwerk, Deep Purple, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, and N.W.A.. If you're like me, you're probably making this hand gesture and going back to reading actually relevant news.
But hold on. We all kind of agree the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is an elaborate joke on the gullible, fabricated by the same Christian fundamentalists from the '80s who said there were Satanic messages played backwards on Led Zeppelin albums, right? Right?
2012 isn't even over yet, and we're already feeling sort of nostalgic for it.
We saw a lot of great shows this year, so narrowing it down to the most mind-blowing 20 wasn't easy, but it was a lot of fun.
--New Times Staff
Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.