May 2010 Archives

Against Me! - White Crosses

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Against Me! - White Crosses (Sire) [upcoming shows] [audio]

This being 2010, saying anything about a band having sold out is a pretty hollow complaint. They all sold out years ago. White Crosses is about trying to get as much radio and Hype Machine buzz as possible and little else. That's why Against Me! sounds like The Killers now. Well, they sound like The Killers would sound if Brandon Flowers had cut his teeth on punk instead of new wave. "I Was a Teenage Anarchist" might be popular soon, so maybe it worked?
The Heligoats - Goodness Gracious (Greyday) [upcoming shows] [audio]

Chris Otepka is following up his epic The End of All-Purpose EP with an LP that many have praised as one of the best of 2010 (so far). Otepka has recently mastered a balance between the simplicity of a man and his guitar with the layered, soaring sound that his band brings to his songs. Emotionally there's a balance between the nonsensical and the earnest, as his stream-of-consciousness lyrics shift between eccentric and sobering, from energetic to gentle. Goodness Gracious takes the listener on a personal, often wandering, and always stimulating voyage.
Artichoke - 26 Scientists Volume 2: Newton — Zeno (self released) [upcoming shows] [audio]

A concept record about 14 more scientists and each song title is a scientist's name along with the years they existed, contributions to the advancement of science, biological information, and other weird facts. As with all musical labors of love, despite the exhaustive effort it takes to make an album like this, it really means nothing if the end result is not worth hearing. This is quite the opposite; even if you didn't have the track listing, this is an album of quirky indie pop, similar to electropop-era Of Montreal.
OK Go - Of the Blue Colour of the Sky (Capitol) [upcoming shows] [audio]

Of the Blue Colour of the Sky demonstrates how a rock band can grow and change to produce something more powerful than expected. This is, after all, OK Go. The treadmill band. The 'body like a battle axe' band. Here they integrate rock, funk, pop, and psychedelia into a sound that is bigger and more mature than ever before. The sound is experimental by nature, so fans will split on whether this outshines Oh No as their favorite, but it is undeniably a step forward for a band that does more than just make great videos.

Kaki King - Junior

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Kaki King - Junior (Rounder) [upcoming shows] [audio]

Anytime she wishes, Kaki King could melt your face off with a scorching mastery of the fretboard. She's done just that in the past, but these days she's concentrating more on writing layered jangly pop tunes and intimate ballads that both soccer moms and Guitar Center employees can get behind. Junior is King's most accessible album in many ways. If this isn't the one that will win her more fans, she may as well throw down Crossroads-style with Glenn Branca next time.

Krokus - Hoodoo

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Krokus - Hoodoo (Sony) [upcoming shows] [audio]

Switzerland's Krokus has returned with their first album in twenty years and, on first impression, there are a lot of similarities with AC/DC's Brian Johnson's vocal style. The mid-80's hair metal formula (cliche?) is played to perfection—cheesy guitar solos, cliched lyrics, and huge singalong choruses. If you are still bitter about Kurt Cobain ruining everything, this is what you have been waiting twenty years for. While some may consider a note-for-note cover of "Born to Be Wild" to be a bad thing, I consider it a feather in their caps.

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This page is an archive of entries from May 2010 listed from newest to oldest.

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