Crystal Bowersox is a new artist that apparently has a bright future before her. The lyrics, the melodies and the musical arrangements all combine in a pleasant experience that remind me of Cowboy Junkies… I guess that is because the bass line is very prominent in nearly every song.
New Order’s latest (and possibly last) album is a true representation of the band’s decline. Peter Hook’s bass sounds annoying, and the overall lack of enthusiasm is palpable throughout the record. I like what Peter Hook has been doing with his new band (The Light), but these tracks are true leftovers from Waiting for the Sirens’ Call, and were only released because apparently the band members were unable to work together on new material. Let’s hope the new formation with a new bass player can revive what once was one of the best bands of the ’80s.
They Might Be Giants are back with their irreverence, high energy and creative writing that keeps the listener engaged throughout their record. There are 26 tracks to this 40+ minute album, so that gives you an idea of how interesting this can get. Their writing reminds me of Toy Dolls somewhat (only the writing, not the sound!), but their lyrics are more “intellectual”–if that is a good word for their songs. I’m hoping this band will tour in Oklahoma so I can have the privilege of seeing them live… it should be a fun concert!
Brad Paisley stands apart from other Country music artists because he is a great guitar player, and does not shy away from nicely done solos in his music. His newest album is almost a gospel record with many more songs than usual talking about religious themes, and a couple even that address social issues–not typical for a Country album! I thought this one sounded different, but not necessarily better.
Bon Jovi’s newest album is typical Bon Jovi: eighties-flavored Hard Rock with social issues and love relationships as main themes. This album shows how they have found their winning formula and are sticking to it… some may call this “lack of creativity,” but I call it “savvy business.” Many successful bands do this (AC/DC, The Rolling Stones, etc.), and fans are very happy that they do. I recently went to their concert and they can still rock the house!
Justin Timberlake? I know… I know… But I said earlier that I have an eclectic taste for music. Well, let’s say I’m not that eclectic. This is an album that is terribly annoying, despite the flashes of talent here and there. I just don’t like this kind of music, and JT’s falsettos make it an even worse experience for me.
The Strokes are back with a very strange album–if you know The Strokes. This is an eighties-sounding record… it’s cool because it is retro, but I’m not sure it would have charted back in the 1980s. What happened to this band? Did they get caught up in The Cars’ recent success? If this is their new direction, I’m curious to see where they will end up… maybe they’ll get better with time and sound like a true ’80s band… or maybe this was just a one-off experiment. In any case, we know they are talented–but they need to get their act together.