Thursday, February 28, 2008
Originally a split between Useless ID and the Ataris, Let it Burn was a refreshing EP of fast-paced gems, many of which were subsequently used on End is Forever. Released on the oft-forgotten Kung Fu Records, the Ataris brought their Israeli counterparts into the mix after hearing their demo. In fact, the tour that they launched, and that the Vandals headlined, was my first concert ever. The band was known for playing the first track ("The Radio Still Sucks") twice, a hallmark at their shows which I'm sure has been stopped in favor of more mainstream pieces. Although short, the album does pack a ton of energy, split into manageable short chunks of punk. Download it, and head back to the days where the snare dominated the scene, and Kris Roe's angst-ridden lyrics exploded through the speakers. As a side note, this is only the Ataris' part of the album. Standout Tracks: "The Radio Still Sucks," and "Blue Skies, Broken Hearts...Next 12 Exits"
The Radio Still Sucks
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
If you had to gauge Felipe Coronel's (aka Immortal Technique) rhymes, I'd put it somewhere between "ruthless" and "cut-throat." Lacking political correctness and brutally attacking social problems with lyrical ferocity, Coronel combines his skill with simple, well-timed beats and smooth transitions from track-to-track. No topic is safe from his barrage, from Bush (and everything he's ever done, ever) to the Israeli/Palestinian conflict. If it involves a social/political issue, chances are Coronel has covered it on Volume 2. His lack of a real record label only helps his underground status, as he freestyles without boundaries and limitations on what he preaches. He embraces this as a strength, indifferent to larger, mainstream rappers who may have more popularity but lack the real opportunity to make people stop and think about what they're listening to. More than sick beats and thug rhetoric, Immortal Technique speaks directly to the listener, delivering the message loud and clear. Standout tracks: "Peruvian Cocaine," "Harlem Streets," and "Freedom of Speech."
Monday, February 11, 2008
Days Away's first release on Sargent House, Ear Candy is quite impressive, with a lot of energy packed into it's EP-size. Compared to Mapping..., their instrumentation has grown, as has their post-production. A more distinct indie vibe reverberates throughout the album, which supports Keith Goodwin's progressive pop style. This being their first foray musically since their split from Fueled by Ramen, hopefully it is just a taste of what's on the horizon. Standout tracks: "I'm Sorry I Told You All My Problems," and "I'll be Lost."
I'm Sorry I Told You All My Problems
Sunday, February 10, 2008
I saw them at a show last night with Angels & Airwaves, and they were extraordinary with an obscene amount of talent. I've heard a bit about them here and there, seen them on TV, but never really gave them a second thought, and that was a huge mistake on my part. Their ability to harmonize and rectify their tone across multiple genres of songs showcases a diverse range, from the biting edginess of "Monster" to the refined vocals of "Cardigan Weather." Their finesse does not stop with their vocals, as their overall musicianship is just as impressive as their singing. Last night, Meg transitioned into "Santeria" while playing "Masterpiece" which is completely amazing. I highly, highly recommend this album. Standout tracks: "Masterpiece," "Tell Mary," and "Cardigan Weather."
Friday, February 8, 2008
Sorry for the lack of updates, I've just been pretty busy. As consolation, request to your hearts content, either through comments, or in the box to the left, and I'll do my best to upload the albums tomorrow. Let's say all requests need to be in by NOON (EST) tomorrow. I'll try and have them all uploaded by Sunday. All Time Low album is on its way, as well as that Days Away album.
Monday, February 4, 2008
Most songwriters run into problems when you only rely on a guitar and your voice to convey emotions, stories, and warmth. It becomes very difficult to create a sense of diversification between albums, and more often than not, albums become repetative and dull. Luckily, Jack Johnson has built his fan base upon his own style of surf-acoustic melodies, and while maturing as a songwriter, still delivers what you listen to any Jack Johnson album for: the laid-back appeal. Soft-spoken, each song reverberates with a sense of satisfaction, moving graciously between purely acoustic ballads and band-reinforced tracks. It's nothing new or groundbreaking, but it does have a familiar tone that is what you'd expect from Jack. Enjoy. Standout tracks: "Enemy" and "Go On."