Tuesday, 30 October 2007

Something to read...

Just found one of the best articles I've read on pitchfork, (we all know some of their stuff is painful too!) and thought I'd point it out to any passers by. This is of special interest to any Brits out there like myself,

Poptimist 9

Monday, 29 October 2007

NaS - Illmatic (1994)

Absolutely definitive album from '94. Slick jazzy beats provide the backdrop for Nas' lyrical genius. Probably my shortest review ever, but the only way to appreciate this album is to have it.


Sunday, 28 October 2007

Ryan Adams - Demolition (2002)

Got my tickets for Ryan Adams back in Nottingham the other day so I've been listening to him a lot again. As a consequence I thought why not up an album, 2002's Demolition which is mainly made up of B-sides and songs which didn't make the cut for the first two-albums, but surprisingly (or unsurprisingly) the record is full of gems, highlighting why this period of Adam's career is regarded as his finest.
Beginning with clean-cut "Nuclear" Adams shows us a different style of song, not present on Heartbreaker or Gold which he revisits a couple more times to great effect. Between these simple rockers' are a varied bunch of brooding country classic and beautiful ballads which showcase Adams ear for melody. Possibly the highlights are the male-female vocals on "Tomorrow" and the plodding street-corner rock 'n' roll on "Tennessee Sucks". The latter in particular shows how well Adams can compose a song, and really bring the most out of each individual instrument.
So, if you're a fan of Adams early work, give this a try as it really is just another very good album, and not a random collection of outtakes!



Saturday, 27 October 2007

Fionn Regan: Cockpit, Leeds, Oct 26th

Looking fairly timid as he entered the stage to the cheers of the substantial crowd you could be mistaken for thinking Fionn Regan was new at this. However, as soon he begins to play, you are immediately reassured that he is the real deal.
Starting slowly on his lone acoustic, fittingly illuminated in a warm orange glow, Regan eased his crowd in before welcoming on stage the rest of his band, assembled from various other bands including Babyshambles. Luckily, the bands performance was very unlike Pete Doherty's men and a tight rhythm section gave the songs the additional lift they needed. An additional percussionist added to the atmosphere and worked really well when he reverted back to the lone acoustic for a couple songs.
Regan's lyrics are filled with clever lines and on the whole, nice and upbeat which left the crowd smiling rather than staring at their shoes. As I was unfamiliar with him before the gig I didn't know what to expect from Fionn Regan but I guess now, I can see what all the hype is about.

Wednesday, 24 October 2007

Normal service will resume...

Just posting to say that, very soon I will be back up to regular posting again so keep coming back. The past month or so has been hectic, starting life in Leeds and my university and although I've heard a load of great music I haven't been rushing to get it on the blog. That leaves me with a lot of cool stuff to review though, so hopefully you'll be seeing it all very soon! I have a request to put out there as well;

Ted Leo and the Pharmacists - The Tyranny of Distance

Josh x

Sunday, 14 October 2007

Silversun Pickups - Carnavas (2006)

With their thickly layered guitar and tight rhythm's the Silversun Pickups are a band that instantly catches your attention but the question is whether they can keep hold of it.
A four-piece hailing from California they got their most early gigs in all the famous L.A. clubs and began to get attention from there. With vocals from bassist, Nikki Monniger, and more often, guitarist, Brian Aubert, the psychedelic melodies are complemented by crashing drums and clever keyboard work, that often involves looping the single guitar to create a layered affect. In my opinion they are one of the best new live bands around, after their set at Leeds absolutely blew me away so aside from checking out this album...try and catch them in a venue near you.
Anyway, I digress. Back to the album. Firstly you will be struck by the riffs and drumming, especially on second track "Well Thought Out Twinkles" but if you listen deeper and further in, then you will start to notice everything that makes this band. The dual, harmonized vocals on "Little Lovers So Polite" collide beautifully with the hypnotic drumming and heavy riff. Haunting synth adds to the ever increasing number of pluses and be sure to check out the awesome bass and drums on "Waste It On".
So, while not a classic, this album shows that Silversun Pickups are a band to keep tabs on and here, they have a really good debut. Definitely recommended for those who are growing ever tired of the jangly Brit-pop that is flavour of the month.


Saturday, 6 October 2007

Band Of Horses - Everything All The Time (2006)

Band Of Horses are essentially alt-rock with country and folk influences but saying just that could nowhere do them justice. They are one of those bands who sounds like many others, but still sound very individual and with this album they have a cool debut that's definitely caught the attention of quite a few. Songs range from faster paced, KOL style, rockers to lazy, slow, winding songs which remind you of The Shins and Iron & Wine. Personal favorites would be the quirky "Wicked Gil" and the stomping "Our Swords".