YTD recordings listened to: 359
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 195
Not good music:151
Buys: 12 (not all 2012 releases)
@@@ Neneh Cherry & The Thing (Smalltown Superjazz). I bought the Steve Albini produced Thing record. I don’t find these guys to be the most amazing exploratory players ever, but I sure as shit appreciate the fire and energy they put out. The sax player has a strong tone and I dig the bass player. I like this record — it’s loose, has a raucous feel, it pushes. I’m not sure I would recommend the dropping of the $14 on it I don’t find the Thing’s playing to be endlessly interesting, but it’s a really good record.
@@@ Peaking Lights: Lucifer. Being marketed as noise pop/dub/lo-fi. I can get with that. We’re starting out with a hammered percussive on the first piece. The second piece is called Beautiful Son, and I find it to have more of a New Age vibe than a dub feel. The third tune, Live Love, confirms that we are entering more of a crystal palace than a blunted weed den. I don’t feel ripped off, just deceived. I don’t know who the genius who tried to slap a dub sticker on this badboy, but he needs a bit of a slap.
@@@ Fiona Apple: The Idler Wheel… (Sony). Quirky and not surprisingly very Regina Spektor-esque. I read a review that called this difficult listening, which I think is more than a bit hyperbolic. The record is not nearly as dark as marketed — she’s not all shiny and happy, but each of the first two tunes contains a verbal hook. She’s an above average songwriter, her voice is fine without being overly emotive. I like the muted drum sound that emerges in songs 4 and 5. There’s not enough dark energy here to produce the sort of catharsis these recordings can produce.
Try John Lennon’s Plastic Ono Band if you would like some dark beauty.
@@@ Justin Bieber: Believe. He’s Wonder Bread passing himself off as a biscuit. That’s right it’s a 2012 version of Elvis Presley, although I believe Elvis was indeed much funkier than Justin Bieber. It’s surreal to hear him conciously try to sound black when he raps on the third tune. His voice is all right, the production is straight club music lite with very few instruments, the lyrical subjects are well…let’s leave it at that.