Saturday, November 21, 2009

Hope Sandoval & the Warm Inventions

I was never a Mazzy Star apologist. I know plenty of folks who are, but to me the band was all promise and very little delivery. In fact, their lack of output has made people protest their greatness way too much in my opinion (same with MBV... they are great but they ain't THAT great, calm down people). So with the rest of the reuniting 90s bands, so returns Hope Sandoval.

And, well, she still hasn't converted me. It's all well and nice and breathy and just dark enough, but I'm still not convinced I should care too much. I mean I get it.. she's attractive and smart and arty. But between the forgettable songs and the onstage tantrums, I just can't see the whole thing being worthwhile. At least Cat Power puts out good records often. Feel free to disagree.

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Friday, November 13, 2009

The Cinematics

I haven't really followed The Cinematics career too closely, but they seem to cross my radar every so often. When I do check their music out, I don't fall in love, but I'm also not turned off.

I think they have talent, and they do have it in them, but most often most of their music gets lost in a post-Interpol haze. Their latest effort has plenty of that as well, but, fortunately for me, I liked it enough to listen to the entire record. By doing so I was pleasantly surprised to find s few songs with more of an Echo and the Bunnymen and/or Edwyn Collins feel. This gives the record a bit more of a sheen of interest than usual, and I definitely recommend "Love and Terror."

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Sunday, November 08, 2009

The White Room

Figured I could take a break from the new music and give you an oldie.

I had never heard of this compilation before, but it was released in 1996 by Q magazine and sounds like something the 96 version of myself would have died for. So does the 2009 version of me to be honest. Can't get much better than this tracklisting:

David A. Stewart and Lou Reed - Walk on the Wild Side
Oasis - Good to Be Free
Edwyn Collins and Bernard Butler - A Girl Like You
Paul Weller and Noel Gallagher - Talk Tonight
Sleeper - Inbetweener
Bobby Womack and Jeanie Tracey - It's All Over Now
Ray Davies and Damon Albarn - Waterloo Sunset


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Thursday, November 05, 2009

Free Energy

I'm not sure I can put my finger on why Free Energy fills the same spot in my mind as other American/East Coast bands like The Strokes and The Virgins, but there's definitely some tonal or melodic common thread here.

Which is not to say they sound exactly like either of those bands. I'd say even with some commonalities, Free Energy still sounds fresh and unique right now. Obviously, the 80s synth sound isn't unique. But Free Energy isn't bringing it o you with an electro dance beat. These synths are more Hall and Oates than Missing Persons, and are much more about having a good time than rocking the house. Obviously, other alluring factors for me are the power pop lyricism and melodies. In my opinion, the more bands we can get that evoke Cheap Trick, Sloan or the Webb Brothers, the better.

And on top of all this, they are on DFA. Proof again DFA has very very few missteps.

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