Wednesday, April 29, 2009
I actually feel like 2009 has so far been really good for music. Already got a couple records I think could end up in my Top 10 albums of the year. Definitely add on another with Conor Oberst and The Mystic Valley Band's newest, Outer South. Another great set of alt-country tunes in the vein of Bob Dylan, Tom Petty, and Ryan Adams. Got a much more upbeat country stomp to it than the somber, Conor Oberst, which had much more emphasis on the solo part of the project. A perfect roadtrip album, I have a feeling this will be playing a lot in my car this summer.
To All the Lights in the Windows - Conor Oberst
Live Video of "I Got A Reason #2"
"You know a lot can happen after everybody falls asleep. Ask the forest fire, ask the cop walking on the beat..."
Not the biggest The Dream fan, but I stayed on his "Rockin' That Shit" remix for awhile and heard a lot of hype around his newest drop, Love vs. Money. Finally got a chance to hear it these past couple days and it's definitely solid. Everything you'd expect from radio-ready R&B, except The Dream steps up the game bringing in a smart concept and an industrial/jazz feel more reminiscent of Nine Inch Nails than Trey Songz. "Radio Killa"? Makes sense...check it
Rockin That Shit - The Dream
Right Side Of My Brain - The Dream
"Girl I'm in love with you baby and I want you to know that I'm hooked on your body and I'm tryna be yours..."
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
I've had Manchester Orchestra's newest release for a couple weeks now, but have been hesitant to post my thoughts on it. As I made quite obvious in this post, I absolutely love I'm Like A Virgin Losing A Child. However, after a couple listens to Mean Everything To Nothing, I could only muster a similar response that I had to the recent film The Watchmen: I honestly don't know whether I like it or not.
Now spending more time with it, I think I have an answer. It is very, very good. The major thing that threw me off on METN is that Andy Hull and Co. have abandoned a lot of elements from their debut. Gone are the soft wails and twinkling chords, replaced by fuzzed out guitars and harsh growls. Gone is the middle-of-the-night morose mood, replaced by a summer southern swag. Gone are the Brand New comparisons, replaced by critics weighing them against The Smashing Pumpkins. Now that I have accepted all these major changes, I have learned that Manchester Orchestra will always be one of those bands that keeps on changing right when you think you have them all figured out, and that's just how they like it.
Don't fret. Hull's lyrics are still in top form, as is the great instrumentation. It's just different. If you can keep an open mind, you'll slowly begin to fall for this disc too. Give it a chance, ok?
Shake It Out - Manchester Orchestra
Pride - Manchester Orchestra
"Whatever, whatever, I can't speak...I sing!"
Monday, April 27, 2009
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
Something with Doghouse Records has been clicking with me recently. First I got hooked on Weatherbox's American Art, and now I can't get enough of one of the label's up-and-coming artists, Mansions. The product of Christopher Browder, Mansion's newest album New Best Friends is a gem full of reverb-soaked pop tunes that have a certain bite and wit to it. Another noticeable thing about the album is the intimacy Browder creates with songs such as "Holidaze", "Curacao Blue", and "Insulated". Browder's voice, which is eerily reminiscent of early Straylight Run John Nolan, haunts all his tunes in a manner that recalls Kevin Devine's slower tracks. Next lazy late night that comes your way, flip the lights off an let this album wash over you. For fans of Kevin Devine, Jesse Lacey, and Say Anything.
Talk Talk Talk - Mansions
Gotta Be Alone - Mansions
Insulated - Mansions
"'Cause all you do is talk, talk, talk all about yourself, self, self..."
A friend showed me this song about this time last year and I fell in love with it. Perfect surf-pop song that has that Beach Boys-California sway to it. Summer is so close.
West Coast - Coconut Records
"And I miss you, I'm going back home to the West Coast. I wish you'd put yourself in my suitcase..."