quinta-feira, setembro 25, 2008

809. South - From Here On In

It's pretty crazy how your tastes change - I've probably gone from liking something to a few years later not liking it and then back again, but even more.

I loved this cd when I got it - this was another one that I was walking around in HMV and they were playing it - and it happened to be on sale, and I had to get it.

Slight tangent, I love small record stores but part of me already misses the real big ones too - where there was an entire, secluded jazz section, a vinyl row, imports galore, a cheesy dj booth...

Anyway, if this had come out in 1998 it would have been on a ton of lists, instead it was released in 2001, I think and had a ton of hype around it. The songs are lush, detailed, layered, etc., and they just sound cliched now - they're still honest, but just over produced, and I don't think with time the over production is something that we'll be able to appreciate.

4.3 out of 10

808. Starsailor - Love is Here

Man sometimes I put this stuff on and wonder how it entered my house. With this one I remember the chain of events. I had picked up a KCRW in studio live CD, and Starsailor had a track on there that wasn't bad (Fever). A month later or so I was at Rockit Scientist and saw the CD for $5. To make matters worse I actually listened to it for a while. When I first got here I couldn't afford to live in the city, I was working freelance only and couldn't commit to an apartment. So I stayed at my dad's in NJ and at Paddi's on the weekends. Waiting for the train during winter in NJ to come into the city is depressing - going back to NJ at night on the train in the winter is depressing too... listening to Starsailor only made maters worse.

Check the sample lyric below:

Don't you know you've got your Daddy's eyes
And your Daddy was an alcoholic
But your mother kept it all inside
Threw it all away

3 out of 10

807. Turin Brakes - Long Distance

You're in trouble when the Max Tundra version sounds more interesting than your own version...

2 out of 10

806. Turin Brakes - Ether Song

Well, this is more of the same though a bit better - a bit denser, layered and mature. It would sound perfect in a Starbucks in West Palm Beach Florida.

4 out of 10

805. Turin Brakes - The Optimist LP

Boy - this falls under a 'what was I thinking' column. I'm sure I had heard one track by these guys before I picked up the used cd. They were english - an acoustic duo on Astralwerks... how bad could it be? Well this cd shows the common man how hard it is to write and play truly engaging music. The songs are well written and played - they sound good, but they don't do anything - it's like meeting two people you know you won't remember in an hour.

3.4 out of 10

quarta-feira, setembro 24, 2008

804. The Dears - Gang of Losers

On Gang of Losers the Dears are less brit dramatic and more gospel almost with some solid rock/pop... I hate talking in such cliched terms but that's the best I can do to describe it. The edge that this cd has over the last is that it's a bit more cohesive than the last release - the songs really belong together as a gang. I'm curious to hear where they go on the next disc that comes out this month.

7.2 out of 10

803. The Dears - No Cities Left

We love hearing things that sound familiar yet fresh and new... with the dears the comparison with the smiths was obvious but at times also unfair. No Cities Left tries to be epic from start to finish but only makes it half way. Still they were able to catch something that would have made even Morrissey say in 85 'shit that sounds good'.

7.5 out of 10

It's too late for me to properly post this...

sexta-feira, setembro 19, 2008

802. Lansing-Dreiden - The Dividing Island

I originally got this for the single "A Line You Can Cross" which to me was a perfect update to an 80's sound I haven't heard since 1983. Overall this album is far more complete than the previous effort in that it's still as varied but not as abrupt. They are an interesting bunch and I want to keep following them because they have the potential to release a very brilliant record that may never be recognized.

I also never saw what the band looked like until today when I looked for their video - which is as 80's as the song - GREAT!

7.8 out of 10

801. Lansing-Dreiden - The Incomplete Triangle

These guys aren't even British but somehow they fit in. The title for this cd is great for an album as varied as this - it does feel as if has three sides: a guitar brit pop side, an ambient esque side, and an electro pop side... all sides come together for an interesting release, that satisfies curiosity but still manages to feel incomplete.

6.4 out of 10


Every landmark album has an enormous ripple effect that often reinvigorates older artists, spawns copy cats and ultimately forces said band to abandon the very sound they became known for in favor of more daring, unknown soundscapes.

Ok Computer gave birth to what I call the 'new pastoral' (full disclosure, the category title isn't mine) - what resulted was a handful of pleasant sounding bands that often just further diluted what was so great about "Fake Plastic Trees". To keep things a bit more interesting I'm also adding bands that sound British and dreamy.

800. Sisters of Mercy - A Slight Case Of Overbombing

I was at my buddy's house years ago in the 80's - Duncan Frew was his name - he put on the Floodland LP that his brother owned and I remember liking it and not liking it at the same time - I was still firmly planted in my metal roots... this greatest hits cd is ok - basically anything off of Floodland is good - ditto with Vision Thing, but the rest is so so.

Duncan was Scottish but he grew up in Rio - as a result he ended up not speaking English or Portuguese well. I googled him but could only find a picture of his folks, here.

Turns out my old physics teacher, Mr. Smith, was there too. He's on the right.

6.8 out of 10

quinta-feira, setembro 18, 2008

799. Joy Division - Still

I don't have too much to say about this posthumous release shy of that the quality varies on the live tracks, Andy Walker was an idiot when I mentioned the album to him, and I recently purchased the original LP because I'm a sucker for packaging - but I really wish I had spent the money on Closer.

7.8 out of 10

Dead Souls

798. Bauhaus - Bela Lugosi's Dead (Single)

Everybody knows this song - Sarah loved it, as well as the band... here's another example of a well known band that I have never explored through individual releases, but only on a track-by-track and greatest hits basis. The single is backed with "Boys", a very 'Love and Rockets' sounding track.

7.1 out of 10

797. Siouxsie & The Banshees - Twice Upon A Time: The Singles

Chad and I would go to Respectable's a lot (which I am sure I've mentioned before) and this cd sounds like many of nights there since I have only really heard these tracks there. I don't own any of Siouxsie's albums, I can't recall being somewhere and having one played for me... anyway, many classics are collected here and they still sound great.

8.4 out of 10

sexta-feira, setembro 05, 2008

796. The Smiths - Best vol.2...

See previous post.

8.1 out of 10

795. The Smiths - Best vol.1...

I will at times buy greatest hits because it's an easy way to get CD quality versions of great songs that can be spread over your vinyl and tape collection... also in this case some of the singles were left off of their full lengths, and were brought back here. A nice CD to have 'in addition too' and not 'instead of'.

8.3 out of 10