Thursday, April 21, 2005

Draft: New Music

I have been on the run the last few weeks. Over the last two weeks or so I have been to two different conventions in Atlantic City and another two conventions in Washington DC. During the trips I was able to finish "We Wish to Inform You That Tomorrow We Will be Killed With Our Families: Stories from Rwanda" by Philip Gourevitch. I will write a review of that amazing book tomorrow. Also I have almost completed The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini. I should also have more to say about it this weekend. (Sneak preview: READ THESE BOOKS!)

While my reading has been slow, I have gone a little nuts with music. Over the last two weeks I have picked up: Beck -- Guero, The Futureheads, Sugarcult -- Start Static, and Joe Strummer and the Mescaleros -- Streetcore.

Beck, Guero (metacritic 77, 6.6 from Pitchfork)
I am pleasantly suprised by this album. I am not a huge Beck fan. I liked some of his breakthrough stuff (Gold, Odelay) but not much since. Guero seems to be more of a return to those first albums, although with a little more maturity in the music.

The Futureheads (metacritic 85 , 8.3 from Pitchfork)
I have not really listened to this yet.

Sugarcult, Start Static (not reviewed by either Metacritic or Pitchfork)
After getting hooked on their second album, and loving the single from this album, I had to buy this cd. I wish I had not. It's just ok.

Joe Strummer and the Mescaleros, Streetcore (metacritic 84, 6.9 from Pitchfork)
I have toyed with buying this cd for a few years. I love The Clash. I even liked Big Audio Dynamite. How could I not like this? The reviews were usually favorable. And yet, something kept holding me back. I had a similar experience with Rancid's ...And Out Came the Wolves. After almost a decade, I finally broke down and bought it. Critics argue Rancid is too much like a Clash rip-off, but that's ok for me.

So, after my success with Rancid, I decided to give Joe Strummer a chance. I have listened to the album a few times now, and I am still mixed. I don't love it, but its not too shabby either.


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