Archives for January 2004

Ween – Quebec

WeenQuebec It seems like Ween has done it all: released nine studio albums, had a lengthy major-label record deal, toured the world, had a MTV hit, appeared on numerous movie soundtracks, cameoed in a movie (even if it was It's Pat: the Movie), written songs for TV shows and commercials, have their own Internet radio station, and the list could … [Read more...]

The Great Depression – The Sargasso Sea EP

The Great DepressionThe Sargasso Sea EP Music is all about feelings. Often our subconscious reactions run counter to our civilized know-how. Sometimes our subjective emotions trump our objective reasoning. Some things can't be described by a formula or a five-word sound byte. I'm awash with the subjective after giving some solid listenings to this … [Read more...]

From Ashes Rise – Nightmares

From Ashes RiseNightmares Jade Tree, better known for post-punk and emo, has released another good hardcore album hot on the heels of the new Paint it Black and Strike Anywhere records. When I say hardcore I mean it; no emo-metal crap on this record. From Ashes Rise is a four-piece from Portland by way of Nashville. Brad Boatright and John … [Read more...]

Putois – The Thinking Fireplace

PutoisThe Thinking FireplaceThe acoustic guitar is a brilliant instrument. It will never cease to be played, and it will never cease to sound wobbly, insecure, and beautiful. To be frank, it is the essential instrument for people who like to be sad. Bob Mason (The man who is Putois) takes this idea and runs on The Thinking Fireplace, making an … [Read more...]

The Bellakun – Cantar Para Espantar la Soledad

The BellakunCantar Para Espantar la Soledad The Bellakun's debut album is a large circle. From the lush opening piano to the last fading chord, all these songs virtually run together to create one long song. In fact, if you put the album on 'repeat' it will flow perfectly from the end back to the beginning, making an eternal loop of remorseful … [Read more...]

Depressive Art – When Spirits Surround

Depressive ArtWhen Spirits Surround If there is one thing I can say about Depressive Art, it's that the band has potential. As this Swedish band professes, "Almost a year has now passed since the five gringos of Depressive Art started their time travel to the late 60s and the sonoric landscapes of psychedelia." Okay I admit I had to look up sonoric … [Read more...]

Matt Marka – Good-bye Gracious

Matt MarkaGood-bye Gracious Someone once said, "The mediocre borrow; the great ones steal." I don't know if Matt Marka qualifies as a Great One, but he certainly has the stealing part down on "Skin Skeleton," the song that kicks off his second solo release, Good-bye Gracious. Marka wails his pained lyric over loose, clanging percussion in a manner … [Read more...]

Oneida – Secret Wars

OneidaSecret WarsBoil my brains, this IS good. Just when 2004 seemed destined to become a fallow uninteresting year for independent-minded sonic mavericks, with another glut of singer/songwriter dullards clamouring to fill the void, along comes Oneida's seriously fucked-up and seriously stunning sixth album. Although limeys, like your writer, have … [Read more...]

Various Artists – Miami Sound: Rare Funk & Soul from Miami, Florida 1967-1974

Various ArtistsMiami Sound: Rare Funk & Soul from Miami, Florida 1967-1974 In 1999, a friend of mine urged me to listen to an unlabeled CD-R he had, claiming it would change my life. For the next 50 minutes, I sat enraptured, listening, smiling, even laughing at points, as DJ Shadow and Cut Chemist regaled me with their collagist masterpiece, … [Read more...]

Girlboy Girl – Forget the Ladder, Climb the Wall

Girlboy GirlForget the Ladder, Climb the Wall You know what they say about first impressions. Well, I'll admit my first impressions of Girlboy Girl weren't all that good. Not being a huge fan of off/on/off key singing, imprecise drumming, and generally slack jangle, my initial reaction went something like this: "Sing on key! Sack the drummer! … [Read more...]