Hey kiddos. I've been meaning to roll out a number of album reviews over the summer but got a little sidetracked...sidetracked meaning I got engaged (roaring applause). Godblessher. That all said I figured I'd combine all of the reviews into a very truncated format with some videos to boot. Enjoy.
Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks: Mirror Traffic
Excellent record. Concise and catchy tracks. No long ass jams seen in previous albums. Similar to Pig Lib.
The Joy Formidable: The Big Roar
One of my favorite new bands. I saw them perform Austere on Subterranean. Then the same track live on Conan. I proceeded to but their latest EP and Album (a few overlapping tracks). I'd really like to see them live. They were insane on Conan and I've only read solid reviews of their live shows.
Fucked Up: David Comes To Life
My first summer album pick-up which was highly anticipated as I'm a huge Fucked-Up fan. The album is over an hour long. Its a rock opera of sorts but don't let that throw you off. Its amazing and I'm as jaded as they come. If you've never heard Fucked-Up before then this may be an acquired taste or total distaste (you can hear the hardcore roots in Damians voice). All of the tracks are solid but songs like A Little Death and The Other Shoe come to the top. Madeleine Follin (Cults...see below) guest vocals on The Other Shoe and a few other tracks I believe. All in all a great evolution for this band but not too evolved (see my MoS comment)
The Rapture : In the Grace of Your Love
A few mediocre tracks. I wish they would bring back their early/more rockin style on previous records or at least reminiscent of dance/punk Echoes (which is one the top albums of all time). Its like they lost their drive. Very disappointed.
Wild Flag: Wild Flag
Top notch super group of riot gals who pushed out a equally top notch album. Great to hear Carrie wail while Janet pounds the skins again. Mega pumped to see them in a few weeks.
Mates of State: Mountaintops
I love these guys. Always have. They also seem like a cool couple that I would totally be BFFs with but why oh why cant they bring back the organ more. We need another Team Boo. Don't get me wrong. The album is high energy and pop-tastic but I just wish bands would stop experimenting and go back to the sound that built their fanbase.
Saw a video for Go Outside on MTV2 (below) and noticed that it starred that douchey character that was on Scrubs - The New Class (or whatever they called it). That realization quickly faded as I listened to the song. Incredible. So I bought the album. Very good dreamy pop. An easy listen like that Best Coast record but not something on repeat at the moment.
Washed Out: Within and Without
Once I heard that Washed Out was responsible for the theme song to the Portlandia IFC show I had to pick up the latest record. Not to mention the album was repeatedly in the press. The bad news is that the Portlandia theme song (Feel it All Around) is on the Life of Leisure EP...which I subsequently picked up also. Both are good records if your into the genre...which is electronica I guess? (Dom help me out). I place them on the same bill as M83. Stellar compositions but again...not something I toss into an album shuffle...maybe a few tracks in a playlist.
Iceage: New Brigade
Garbage. Another Pitchfork pumped-up disappointment. Sounds like a cat thrown into a lawnmower...in Denmark.
Artists I need to explore...
- James Blake - Never heard this cat but he seems to be on everyone's must listen list
- Jens Lenkman - Heard one song years ago and it was awesome. That's all I got.
- The War On Drugs - Hot press and recos from my friends (mainly Meg)
- Battles - Mirrored didn't blow me away as much as the critics but I like some of the tracks I heard on Gloss Drop. Should I pick up?
- M83 - Really dug the other records and saw a killer live show. Even if he looks like Ryan Reynold's. The new album is supposed to be kickass
Bands/artists I'm sick of hearing about...
- Das Racist
- Neon Indian
- Jeff Magnum
Going to see Maritime and Wild Flag in the coming weeks. I'll try and throw up some reviews following. Have a great Christopher Colombo weekend.