Seven Music Micro-reviews for Recent Albums in Doug's Collection
Let's clear the stack of music CDs I've wanted to comment on via a set of seven micro-reviews.
Jade Leary's And Come the Sirens: A music album for... Magnatune junkies wanting to add a little rock into their steady diet of World and New Age music. Review in a Nutshell? You know how bands like Alice in Chains had those bridge songs, a bit downtempo, kind of "dark" themed or introspective, with vocals and music a bit more washed out and lyrics designed to transition themes? Imagine an album made up entirely of them. They are adequately done, and several are really good, but the album lacks a needed slice of punch. It rarely elevates itself above "interesting background music". Just One Track? "Tropics" (track 3). Special Note: You can stream the whole album for free if you want.
Electracy's In Here We Fall: A music album for... fans of frat-rock who want a tad more ironic edge in their rotation. Review in a Nutshell? This album was bought with the track "Cosmic Castaway" in mind: an ode to drug use, suicide, and being a winner in your own dreams. However, while all the songs have that same sense of gritty and angry acceptance, most of them are a little too accessible. The electro-fuzz wrapped ironic lyrics make it passably different, though many of the hooks are knee-deep in well-tread territory. Just One Track? "Cosmic Castaway" (track 6).
Iggy Pop's Préliminaires: A music album for... people who like to hear established artists do something different, and/or people who like to hear French-inspired music. Review in a Nutshell? Imagine Iggy Pop singing on an album designed and written by Tom Waits, and there you go. Some interesting tracks, no doubt, but a little bit more of an Iggy Pop infused joie de vivre would have been welcome. Just One Track? "King of the Dogs" (track 3).
Miss Li's Dancing the Whole Way Home: A music album for... people who obsessively collect every song every used in an iPod commerical. Review in a Nutshell? This is a quirky and fun little album from the edge of the neo-cabaret genre. The kind that picks you up and has you singing along. What's more, the lyrics are clever enough to be guilt free and the mixture of backing musics literally includes a little bit of something for everyone. Definitely recommended. Just one Track? Several good ones, and you have probably already heard the really catchy "Bourgeosis Shangri-la", but it would probably have been "I Heard of a Girl" (track 1) that I would have obsessed over in high school.
Ambulance's Ambulance EP: A music album for... those who think they like post- and avant-garde-rock, but aren't 100% sure about the 10 minute songs. Review in the Nutself? I still think that Bells and Whistles is a stronger EP, but this is a little 15-minute album of well-crafted musical notions. They play with a dozen different music concepts in five short tracks, though the distorted male voice gets overused by the end. It would have likely been better had they hushed on a few tracks and let the songs speak for themselves. Just One Song? I have to give some love to "Hey, Beat Takeshi" (track 2), most likely to be loved by fans of "I Am Not Zen".
Muse's The Resistance: A music album for... those who want to hear what Queen would sound like as an alterntive band. Review in a Nutshell? I've pointed out the Queen influence more than once, but let it be known I am not ragging on the band. I like this CD a lot. I'm pretty sure I will eventually drift back to their older material over this, but for now this is a solid album. Definitely does not deserve the "new album by that band on the Twilight soundtrack" some reviewers are throwing at, I suppose because they don't feel bothered to look up anything about the band. Just One Track? I'm going to say "United States of Eurasia [+Collateral Damage]", the most Queen of all the tracks on the album.
The Romanov's ...And the Moon Was Hungry...: A music album for... those who think that femme-fronted bands at ren-faires are the best music, like ever. Review in a Nutshell? Billed by some fans as a "Medieval pop album" and that's not true (thanks, Magnatune, for having actual Medieval music). However, you do get quite singable with an edge femme-pop with plenty of pianos, cellos, harpsichords, and so forth. Most of the tracks have a pleasant mini-epic sweep to their feel, as well, aided, natch, by the backing orchestration. Just One Track? Try out "Fever Pitch" (track 3), including some often awesome vocalization.
Si Vales, Valeo