Do you want to know the dark truth...
or do you want to see me whack some dingers?

Apr 12 2007

Slow Show

I am still a bit under the weather today, but since this stuff is growing staler by the day, here are some jumbled and entirely random thoughts on a few recent releases.

The Photo Atlas - No, Not Me, Never
Sounds like At the Drive-In to me, and depending on your views on shouty, over-the-top vocals, that may or may not be a bad thing. I don't usually tend to go for this type of stuff, but I bet they're pretty good live.

The Cinematics - A Strange Education
They sound like the Editors like The Editors sound like Joy Division. And by that I mean, close enough for lazy comparisons by lazy writers. That would be me right about now. Still getting through my first listen of this record and I like it even though it doesn't have the scope or depth of The Back Room. But I bet this record will grow on me with a few more listens. Look around for some MP3's (there are plenty out there) and judge for yourself. Another band I want to see live, although I'll be in Vegas when they play D.C. with The Changes (dagger!) so I'll have to wait until they tour with The Bravery in June.

Bloc Party - A Weekend in the City
I think I said this sucks a few weeks ago, but it has grown on me quite a bit since then. I'm really liking the angular guitar sounds. There are a few great songs here but overall it lacks the copious amount of hooks on Silent Alarm.

Kings of Leon - Because of the Times
This also isn't as instantly catchy as their last record, but it's still really, really good. It has this great, vintage Replacements vibe to it that I'm really enjoying. The thing I like most about this record is they've successfully made "the difficult third album" where they've updated and changed their sound, and it stands up to their earlier work. Which is more than you can say about most bands. Counting the days until I can finally see them live.

Modest Mouse - We Were Dead Before the Ship Even Sank
I just cannot get into this band. Even with Johnny Marr on board. Meh.

The National - Boxer
Moody as all hell and lacking a slam dunk like "Mr. November," but I do find myself looking down at my iPod thinking "This song is great" a few different times with each listen. I'm not sure if this will be the record that ultimately breaks them and makes everyone realize how great they are, but it should be. This album will set the blogosphere on fire when it's released (if it hasn't done so already). The early favorite for 2007's Band of the Year as voted by a bunch of effing bloggers.

Ted Leo - Living With the Living
My first reaction was "Oh shit, Ted made a bad record," but that's not true. It's just merely good, not great. The reggae song and some of the other stuff doesn't bother me as much as other people, I just feel like this record is Ted treading water. Sounded great live though.

Maximo Park - Our Earthly Pleasures
Now, with keyboards!

Albert Hammond, Jr - Yours To Keep
I was really surprised at how much I enjoyed this record. It takes all the great stuff from the Strokes (killer riffs and great drumming) and distills them into a tidy, new package - without the crap production. Bonus. Some of the lyrics are cringe inducing, but that could easily be said about any of the records above. Definitely worth checking out if you're curious.

Travis - The Boy With No Name
I've only heard five songs from this record but they're all great. I can't explain my irrational love of this band, but I've been a fan since their first record. The new stuff doesn't re-invent the wheel but I'm a sucker for Fran & Co.'s happy, fun-time pop tunes. Looking forward to hearing the whole thing.

Posted by Kyle in CD Reviews | Permalink


I really like the KOL album, am fine that it has fewer great hooks that its predecessor. I hear some Pixies in it (Kim Deal should get a royalty check). I have a feeling it'll turn out to be a "sneaky hot" album (to borrow a phrase from The Sports Guy).

Bloc Party has not turned out to be sneaky hot. It's as mediocre and predictable as the first time I listened to it.

Posted by: Glenn at April 12, 2007 12:54 PM

The National are opening for Arcade Fire. Pretty happy I was able to snag tickets to the Philly show.

Posted by: JDS at April 13, 2007 11:45 AM

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