My apologies for how slow the blog has been lately. I’ve been sick with a horrible
sinus infection for the last month. I saw an ENT on wednesday, and with massive doses of antibiotics and steroids, I’m finally on the mend, so hopefully things
will get back to normal soon.
- Marillion, “Thunder Fly”: For those of us who pre-ordered Marillion’s upcoming album, they just made mediocre-quality prerelease copies available for download. Overall, I’m very happy with it. It’s quite good; I can’t wait to listen to it in its high-quality CD form. This is a fun track; it’s got a nice bounce
to it, but also has some of those wonderful Marillion transitions. It’s a vast improvement over anything from their last album.
- Explosions in the Sky, “Yasmin the Light”: some Mogwai style post rock. Explosions is one of my favorites of this style of post-rock. This is very typical of them – really excellent.
- Motionless, “United States of Amnesia”: another post-rock band,
whose style is a lot like Mogwai. Not quite as good as “Explosions in the Sky”,
but still very good.
- Red Sparowes, “Buildings Begin to Stretch Wide”: even more post-reck. Yes, I do love my post-rock. The Red Sparowes have a louder, harder sound. Much less derivative of Mogwai than the last two bands. The Red Sparowes are a favorite of mine. In fact, for people who haven’t listened to any post-rock before, the two things I recommend are Red Sparrowes, and “Godspeed You Black Emperor”.
- The Klezmatics, “In Kamf”: The first time I ever seriously listened to Klezmer was back in college. I was really involved in Hillel (a campus Jewish organization), and we sponsored a concert by a NY klezmer band called the Klezmaniacs. Two of the members of the Klezmaniacs are also members of the Klezmatics; this album is the first klezmer album I ever bought. This isn’t one of my favorite songs on it; I prefer the dance music.
- Thee Silver Mt. Zion Memorial Orchestra & Tra-La-La Band, “Goodbye Desolate Railyard”: Yet more post-rock; one of the sillier names that “A Silver Mt. Zion” has used. In
general, I really like ASMZ, but the leader’s voice is awful, and this track has a strong vocal lead. So it’s just an eh. In general, I love this album, just not
- David Sylvian and Robert Fripp, “The First Day”: this is one of my overall favorite albums. I love just about everything Fripp has ever done. Sylvian is excellent, except that he’s sometimes lacking in energy. The two of them together are absolutely stunning. Everything on this album is pure brilliance.
- Victor Wooten, “Happy Song”: a very appropriately named song. Vic Wooten is the bass player from the Flecktones, and he’s an incredible master
of the electric bass. The guy is up there with folks like Jaco Pastorius in
his skill at the bass. This is a catchy, bouncy, happy little song which has some really stunning bass work going on in the back. It’s not a style of music that I’m wild about, but it’s worth it to hear that kind of ass-kicking bass. Once it gets past the intro, into the middle of the song, it’s just dazzling. The first time
I heard this, I was in the car with my wife, and they were playing it on NPR. I was listening, saying “I gotta find out who this is, they’re amazing. The style sounds a lot like Vic Wooten, but I don’t think he’s quite that good”. And then the song finishes, and they start talking to him, and it’s Vic.
- Metaphor, “When it All Comes Together”: Metaphor is a great, unknown neo-progressive band. This is very typical of their sound. You can get their stuff online from bitmunk, which is one of my favorite places for buying music.
- Tony Levin, “What Would Jimi Do?”: a wonderful track from another
bass genius. In a wonderful takeoff from the garbage being spewed by christian loonies, the song is about asking “What would Jimi Do?”