Episode 396: Van Halen's '5150' [Discologist]

Season 7, Ep. 396

Van Halen’s 5150 was a turning point for the legendary party rockers for more than one reason. The replacing of original front man David Lee Roth with rocker Sammy Hagar was what was driving headlines, but the real news was in the music. Revved up, radio-friendly, and raring to go, this “new” Van Halen supplemented often questionable machismo with synths, honest-to-god pop hooks, and, most radically: Feelings.

Washington Post Pop Critic Chris Richards and Broke Royals’ Philip Basnight are joining us as we reconsider one of the most divisive albums of Van Halen’s career, reveal it’s secrets, and more.

This, dear listener, is what dreams are made of.

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Episode 498: Dezron Douglas and Brandee Younger 's 'Force Majeure'

Season 10, Ep. 498
While the pandemic of 2020 affected just about every aspect of our lives, it was professional musicians who may have been hit the hardest. Without the possibility of tours or even an audience, artists who previously relied on performing their work for a living were forced to re-evaluate how they would get by. For many, this meant a shift to DIY streaming performances, which, while they have the potential to offer uniquely intimate connections to artists, have not proven to be a suitable replacement or method of output. Enter bassist Dezron Douglass and harpist Brandee Younger and their series of shows on Instagram.What began as a simple way to connect to friends and fans over “brunch” became a bright spot to look forward to in the early days of the pandemic. Locked down in their apartment in New York City, the two interpreted an entire history of song revealing almost by accident that no matter what the circumstance, no matter how bleak it got, music and art would find a way.Force Majeure, the resulting album of highlights from those performances, is many things, but above all, it is a gift. For all the darkness we ALL experienced this year, despite all the confusion and pain, Douglass and Younger’s spirit manages to illuminate the world and let the listener know how not alone they really are. A musical journey through our seemingly endless days so filled with beauty, humor, and, most of all, life,Force Majeurestuns, not by being flashy, but by being human.