Be Here Now: New Album Reviews 1-12-18 – 1-18-18

Written by | January 17, 2018 4:56 am | No Comments


Anderson East – Encore – Neo soul with blue eyes and bad songs – C

Big Star – Live At Lafayette’s Music Room – Memphis, TN – The birth of Big Star as critics darlings (opening for Archie Bell And The Drells) in 1973, songs off #1 Record, songs not yet on Radio City, and some strong covers. Thus are legends born – A

Black Rebel Motorcycle Club – Wrong Creatures – Garage rock UK style… again – C+

Black Veil brides – Vale – from Kiss to Black Sabbath in seven years – C

Booji Boys – Weekend Rocker LP – Excellent pop-punk that sounds like 1977 and clearer and catchier, the early “Doin’ The Pyre” is unbeatable – B+

Borns – Blue Madonna – Less a leap forward and more a leap sideways, the follow up on Dopamine is every thing a follow up should be, consolidated on the melodic powers of Dopamine but with more inner power. The Lana Del Rey song that opens the set is ace and a little later “We Don’t Care” uses the Bo Didley beat to great effect, the rest gets a bit much – B

Camila Cabello – Camila – The former Fifth Harmony has played her hand as well as Zayn Malik, and while some of this is a bore, its best moments, the potential song of the winter “Never be The Same” for one and the Cuban- American theme song “Havana” among them, is sky high – B+

Corrosion Of Conformity – No Cross No Crown – Straight up hard rock and roll head kicking monster riffs, this is a great ride and a fun album and that maybe all it is but it sure is that – B+

Datsik – Master Of Shadows EP – I know it sounds easy, almost a con game, but not everybody can drop the bass and devastate you and Datsik does it again and again here – B

Dave East – Karma – Harlem isn’t the new Atlanta but it is having a moment, and Dave east’s mixtape while a little heavy for my tastes has its moments and always has a strong presence. Too much boujee of course but remember where you are – B-

Francis And The Lights – Just For us – Electronic pop well loved by Chance The Rapper but not by me, he bored me on stage, and this is bland electro soul – C

Joe Satriani – What Happens Next – The guitar hero as flat out bore, somewhere Jimi Hendrix is shrugging – C-

Lil Skies – Life Of A Dark Rose – This is just my style, baby trap meets mumble rap and goes mainstream on this catchy little mixtape spinning in circles of ear candy – B+

Matt Whipkey – Driver – Matt, a rock star if that word means anything anymore, has driven for both Lyft and Uber, and has taken the stories shared and switched idioms, for this deep green and red classic rock album, amazingly consistently, constantly entertaining and enlightening, sometimes destructive, always dazzling songs. “Marian Kowalski, Dec 1994,” “Fred, You’re Dead,” and “Coal Mine” followed by “Winter Tires,” are highlights, “Drive My Car” is just looking for trouble – ALBUM OF THE WEEK – A

Maxo Kream – Punken – I was gonna give him a “B” but this Houston rapper is the real deal, a violent, scary gangbanger who takes care of business with the backstory to prove it:

“My Granny oldest son is Alvin Jr., call him Uncle Main

That’s my favorite Uncle, on occasion he smoke crack cocaine

Petty, thief, and junkie, but he always had my most respect

When I was six, I seen him stab a nigga, and he bled to death”

This is a real thriller of vicarious bad times – B+

Sylvan LaCue – Apologies In Advance -The self-hating Florida mumble rap aka baby trap scene has been mired in self-loathing since the get go, so now they have their own therapists who suggests a 12 step program to self-actualization. Nothing special but “Selfish” is a keeper – B-

Sure Sure – Sure Sure – LA pop band bring the sunshine on first rate dream songs like “Giants” and “Friends” but even at less than 40 minutes it jumps off the deep end before the finale – B-

The Neighbourhood – To Imagine EP – Art rockers meets neo-soul, like Majid Jordan but with even higher hip quotient – C+

Typhoon – Typhoon – 11 member alt rock folk band, it takes a village to be this boring – C

Various Artists – Dr. Demento Covered In Punk – over 30 covers of songs originally aired on the Dr. Demento radio show, as well as new “demented” covers of classic punk tunes. For some reason I thought it would be a little more fun. I mean in theory Shonen Knife covering Weird Al parodying Michael Jackson should be a blast, shouldn’t it? It gets a little tedious – B-



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