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Subject: What new music did you listen to in May? rss

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Erik D
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Akron/Family - Set 'Em Wild, Set 'Em Free - They sound like they don't know what they want to sound like. Some tracks are reminiscent of Animal Collective or Deerhoof while others are more alt-country. Still, a fun album with 2 fantastic tracks at the end.

Pink Mountaintops - Outside Love - Gets my vote for best cover art of the year so far. I'm starting to like this Black Mountain side project even more than Black Mountain itself.

Woods - Songs of Shame - Standard lo-fi stuff. Not bad, but not terribly memorable so far.

Floating Action - Floating Action - Easily a top 10 album of the year. The opening track "50 Lashes" may very well end up as my favorite song of the year as well. Perhaps it's because the album found me at exactly the right time. I'm in a big tropical mood lately, so this lo-fi laid back rock album with hints of reggae, ska and surf rock is exactly what I need.

White Rabbits - It's Frightening - Fun percussion heavy syncopated rock from a band that listens to Spoon so much they had Britt Daniel produce the album. While not great, it's certainly good.

Clues - Clues - To date, the guys from The Unicorns have performed as Islands, Tha Corn Gangg [sic], Human Highway and now Clues. The most recent albums, Arm's Way from Islands and Moody Motorcycle from Human Highway were terribly boring. It's nice to see that Clues finally went back to their Unicorns roots and became fun to listen to again.
 
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Green Day's 21st Century Breakdown -- Before anyone gives me any lip, I just want to point out that I've been following the band since 1,039/Smoothed Out Slappy Hours hit the streets. Plus, I'm amazed that they're retained that same sound for so long, and have just managed to get better and better as they go. I still like the rawer sound, but I like these epics that Billie Joe is creating with the new stuff.
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http://halfturkey.blogspot.com/2009/06/project-250-reviewing...

Buffalo Springfield - Buffalo Springfield Again
The Kinks - Something Else by The Kinks
Cream - Disraeli Gears
Love - Forever Changes
The Velvet Underground - The Velvet Underground & Nico


Reviews are at the link
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erak wrote:
Akron/Family - Set 'Em Wild, Set 'Em Free - They sound like they don't know what they want to sound like. Some tracks are reminiscent of Animal Collective or Deerhoof while others are more alt-country. Still, a fun album with 2 fantastic tracks at the end.


How does it compare to Love is Simple? Akron/Family the album is one of my very favorites, but the last record just seemed too much like hippie music for my tastes.

New to me this month is Fever Ray's self titled debut. I've always thought of myself as a person that can't stand electronic music. There have been some releases in the last couple years that I've really liked, but I've thought they were just flukes. With this album I can no longer have any illusions that I've made a full transition.

Also, Grizzly Bear's Veckatimest was released last Tuesday and it's extremely good. The real album is even better than the low-quality leak I've been listening to for the past two months.
 
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Tori Amos - Abnormally Attracted To Sin: I'm a pretty big Tori fan but this album is pretty meh. The Welcome to England single is the best cut on the album for me so far. I'd give it a "C"

Ben Harper and the Relentless 7 - White Lies for Dark Times: I'm a big Ben Harper fan but like Tori's this one feels pretty meh to me. It's OK. I bought version from his website and got a bonus live CD. Have not heard that yet. Nothing on the disk jumped out at me. I'd give it a "B-" after about 2 spins or so.

Chris Isaak - Mr. Lucky. Another fairly average disk, although I like this one more than either Tori's Or Ben Harper's new albums. Nothing jumped out to me as an instantly great sons like Wicked Game or Baby Did a Bad Bad Thing, but overall it is a pretty decent effort. I'd give it a "B+" after about 2 spins or so.

Green Day - 21st Century Breakdown: I like Green Day, don't love them. I really like the Know your Enemy single so I caved and picked this album up. It is good. Not great. I never did pick up their last studio album but I enjoyed every single I heard on the radio. I hear maybe one other strong single on this album. As an album is maybe a strong "B" after about 2 spins.

 
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There's new music?

Check out Jonathan Coulton - he's da bomb!

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Blorb Plorbst
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OK, so it's new to me.

After this striking photo of rockabilly artist Charline Arthur was posted on the always-entertaining-and-frequently-provocative If Charlie Parker Was a Gunslinger, There'd Be a Whole Lot of Dead Copycats I took a closer listen to early Rockabilly artists:

I love the look on the guy's face to her left. I like to imagine that Charline just sang something extremely saucy (not unlikely) and it caught him by surprise,

So this May has involved a lot of listening to Charline, Carl Perkins, Buck Owens, Charlie Feathers, Eddie Cochran, Gene Vincent and Janis Martin.



I also found that ever since Dabrye showed up in my Pandora Triphop/Downtempo/Broken Beat channel -- I thumb up all of his stuff. Worth a listen . . . even if you don't like the style.
 
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Erik D
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travistdale wrote:
erak wrote:
Akron/Family - Set 'Em Wild, Set 'Em Free - They sound like they don't know what they want to sound like. Some tracks are reminiscent of Animal Collective or Deerhoof while others are more alt-country. Still, a fun album with 2 fantastic tracks at the end.


How does it compare to Love is Simple? Akron/Family the album is one of my very favorites, but the last record just seemed too much like hippie music for my tastes.


I can't be too helpful here. Set 'Em Wild is the first full Akron/Family album I have. All the other tracks of theirs I have is a random smattering from their catalog.
 
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Alestorm - Captain Morgan's Revenge... Nothing like some heavy metal pirate thrash to get the blood pumpin' at work. Alestorm is what would happen if Manowar wrote about pirates instead of Norse gods and vikings. Rating: B+

Grails - Doomsdayer's Holiday... Gothic, atmospheric, eerie new age. Reminds me a bit of Godspeed You Black Emperor or some of Delirium's older work (Semantic Spaces, Spheres, etc). Rating: A-

Candlemass - Death Magic Doom... The ultimate Doom metal band, Candlemass just released their second album with Robert Lowe (from Solitude Aeturnus) on vocals. It's a good album, with a mix of doomsy dreadful beats and some changed up tempos. It's not nearly as good as the previous album, the incredible King of the Grey Islands -- but Candlemass fans should still be well pleased. Rating: B+

Finntroll - Nattfodd... Finnish metal hoedown music. About as bizarre and eclectic a mix as I've run into yet, but somehow it all works. Complex interaction of death/speed metal with traditional Finnish folk music. Bizarrio, but enjoyable. Rating: B

Gojira - The Way of All Flesh... Wow. Gojira is quickly becoming a favorite speed/prog metal band. Solid musicianship. Interesting arrangements. Tempo shifts. Bizarre subject matter. Toggling vocals between traditional heavy metal howls and more melodic tones. This was an incredibly pleasant surprise and was listened to heavily in May. Rating: A
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Steve Wagner
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This is the summer of releases for me. Most of my favorite bands/singers are releasing CDs right now.

Here's some new stuff I've been listening to:

Better Than Ezra, "Paper Empire" - This CD is tough for me. Parts of the CD have some of the best songs they've ever written, and then the other parts really suck, especially for them.

Green River Ordinance, "Out of my Hands" - This is there first CD. If I would compare them to other groups, I would say they're similar to Jimmy Eat World and All American Rejects, except that the songwriting is much better than the latter. This CD is a complete CD, all of the songs are great.

Starsailor, "All the Plans" - probably barely known here in the US, but they're getting to be on the same level as Radiohead, at least for me. Everything they touch seems to be gold.

Jimmy Eat World, "Chase This Light" - When I first heard this CD, I didn't really care for it. But it's grown on me.

Jars of Clay, "The Long Fall Back" - Quite a departure from their previous album. Lots of electronic influence on this one. I don't think it's as good as Good Monsters, but it's still really good. The only thing I would say is that the songs seem to sound the same sometimes.

Mat Kearney, "City of Black and White" - He doesn't do any spoken parts at all on this new album and I have to say he's better without it. Although sometimes the songs do sound very similar to each other, his lyrics make up the difference.
 
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Joe Gola
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Bob Dylan: Together Through Life. Hard to describe. Dylan's and Robert Hunter's down-home non-sequitur lyrics are grafted onto familiar R&B rhythms with a happy little accordion added just for laughs. If Dylan's voice gets any more gravelly he's going to start wrecking people's speakers. Overall there's something free and easy about the music; there's none of the fierceness of "High Water" or "Honest with Me," and it doesn't have that gutwrenched sound of "Workingman Blues #2" or "Sugar Baby," but even so there's something very charming about it; I've listened to it a lot, and I feel like I could listen to it a lot more. It's not quite as good as "Love and Theft", but that's a very high bar. Hard to compare to Modern Times, because that one was a bit more hit-and-miss for me; there's nothing on TTL as fantastic as "Thunder on the Mountain," but then there's nothing as sappy as "Beyond the Horizon."

My favorite track is "If You Ever Go to Houston."
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Gola wrote:
Bob Dylan: Together Through Life.


Just included it in my Amazon order (for my 1969 albums) for my wife, who listens to little outside of Dylan. I'm hoping that it's more along the lines of Modern Times (I loved every track in that one) than the previous two.

 
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Not really new, but I got into the Gorillaz this month.
 
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Ooh, let's see...

The Number Twelve Looks Like You - Worse Than Alone: From the reviews I was expecting this to be horrible. I'm glad those reviewers were just idiots. Another amazing tech metal album with an extremely strong jazz influence.

El Gruepo Neuvo de Omar Rodriguez-Lopez - Cryptomnesia: As good as expected, if not better. Cedric's vocals on this album as totally different from anything I've ever heard him do before, very refreshing and sparse. The whole record comes across as a harsher, less melodic Bedlam In Goliath (The Mars Volta). I just wish Zach Hill got more spotlight, but his drumming is still insane.

Capillary Action - So Embarassing: A pretty crazy prog-math rock band with really frantic compositions. Sounds like Dirty Projectors in a blender, honestly.

Agoraphobic Nosebleed - Agorapocalypse: This was a welcome suprise, with much longer, more groove-based songs than normal. Also, Scott Hulls drum programming has gotten seriously sophisticated, as shown in the drum solo that sounds totally organic and live.

Coalesce - Ox: Finally got a chance to hear this album, about what I expected. Very abrasive and nice use of odd meter. Not that memorable, but I'd give it a few more spins.

Sights and Sounds - Monolith: Randomly found this last week. Sounds like Baroness if they went prog rock... basically, I was blown away. Definantly deserves more listens.

Beat Your Kids - pretty much everything they've ever made: Some crazy noisegrind in the vein of AxCx. Good for a listen or two, but that's about it. The vocals don't have the spastic hilarity of Seth Putnam's. At least it's free.

Scale The Summit - Carving Desert Canyons: Epic and beautiful instrumental tech metal. Not as purely metallic as Monument was, but I don't really see that as a problem like many reviewers seem to have.

Blotted Science - Blotted Science: I was actually dissapointed with this. The whole ensemble is extremely technical but the songs started to sound rather same-y after a while. Ron Jkasdhflkajsdfbek's whole tone scale runs were rather interesting though. Good instrumental tech death, but not as amazing as it could have been.

Dredg - The Pariah, The Parrot, The Delusion: Well, it's dredg, so it's amazing... but it wasn't nearly as good as El Cielo or even Catch Without Arms. The album got better as it progressed, but up that leaves me wondering why they put their weakest songs up front (Doesn't get good until aroun track 5). For the wait I was extremely let down with this.

Giraffes? Giraffes! - Superbass: Pretty much what you'd expect, some well done post-rock inflected math rock. My anti-odd time friend actually liked this, so they must have done something right.

Daughters - Hell Songs: Dude, seriously, reviewers have no idea have the time, do they? Totally different from their old material, but it still sounds exactly like them. It's like... a deranged Jesus Lizard. Well, more deranged. Their lead singer sounds exactly like David Yow in some songs, that's for sure. I like.

Discordance Axis - The Inalienable Dreamless: Finally got my hands on this classic album. Top-notch experimental grindcore, absolutely recommended to every single person on the planet. Even if you hate it, you need to hear this album.

Disturbed - Indestructable: A friend burnt me this a couple weeks ago. Sounds closer to Ten Thousand Fists than their old material, but I see that as a good thing. Really solid record.

??? - ???: There was a tech metal band that I listened to because someone said they were practically guaranteed to be tech album of the year. Well, they probably won't be. It was so unmemorable I can't even remember the band's name or the album title, and I listened to it last week. Some interesting bits, but it sounded like more of the same. And hte lyrics were really, really bad. I'd tell you to avoid it, but... y'know... I can't.

Also, I listened to a few songs off of Jeff Loomis' solo album Zero Order Phase on youtube and decided that I must buy it soon. The man is definantly one of the most tasteful shredders in metal right now.

I think that's about it... I think I have a slight problem.
 
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M Hellyer
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Stan Graham and Laura Smith - Scottish folk songs

Rent - Great soundtrack

Tchaikovsky's 2nd and 3rd Piano Concertos
 
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Beulah--"The Coast is Never Clear." Okay, so it isn't new (2001), but its new to me. My kind of indie rock.

Bob Dylan--"Together Through Life." Good, but I like "Modern Times" better. It's on par with "Love and Theft" though, which makes it a good album in any case.

John Vanderslice--"Mass Suicide Occult Figurines." Good singer/songwriter indie rock stuff. Also not new (2000), but new to me. I'd listened to some of his stuff in college, but hadn't heard it about seven or eight years. "Confusion Boats," the first song on the album is a standout, even if the album's most known song is "Bill Gates Must Die."

Diis
 
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Listened to a bunch of old music, mostly downloaded Tweezer EPs that I foolishly didn't buy when they originally came out.
 
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