The Early Bird: Top New Music Releases Reviewed 11-17-17 – 11-23-17
Some of this is better than we had any reason to hope, I wasn’t crazy about the new Morrissey singles leading up to today’s releases, I split on the Charlotte Gainsbourg singles, and sure I loved Sia but a Christmas album of all new songs is a tricky contradiction, but she pulls it off.
But first, new singles: Bjork’s “Blissing Me” is much sweeter, lovelier, more soothing, and in finest of spirits than “The Gate” -it is exactly what we hoped for on the upcoming Bjork In Love album (Grade: A-) Nobody ask me whether I’ve sipped the Kool Aid when it comes to U2 -so if I tell you that “American Soul” is their second great song (Grade: B+) off their eagerly anticipated for once in 15 years new album, this soul rocker is exactly that. Sure, “Broccoli” was a terrific song but what sold ne on Dram was his terrific opening slot on the Kendrick Lamar gig. I love “Crumbs,” a piece of badass misogyny, he gets big bread,she gets crumbs (Grade: B). G-Eazy has threatened a double on his next album, and if “The Beautiful And Damned” is anything to go by, he better use a lot more of the Billie Holiday sounding Zoe Nash (Grade: C-).
OK, albums. Morrissey’s Low In High School is much better than we could have hoped for, his best since Ringleader Of The Tormentors (an album in which he seemed a little more pro-Palestinian, or at least pro some of the cuter guys who lived there). As usual, he is a reactionary asshole but there is no exit for his Brexit and he has the songs to prove it. Grade: B+. Mavis Staples’ If All I Was Was Black has the voice, the performance is fine electric Gospel,and some of the songs, by Jeff Tweedy for the most part (white boys can’t leave her alone), are OK but mostly they just aren’t there. Grade: C+. Sia’s Everyday Is Christmas is a very successful attempt to imagine Amy Winehouse performing new seasonal songs (Grade: B+). Cyhi The Prynce was all over Yeezus, and this solo album has Kanye West on one song, Pusha T, Schoolboy Q, on this old fashioned rap album No Dope On Sundays, the title track could well end up the best song of the week! Grade: B+. Over an hour of T-Pain but it pains me to say that Oblivion gets way too much, way too early. He is the victim of his own success. It’s been nine years since Thr33 Ringz, and he hasn’t gotten his mojo all the way back. Grade: B-
As always, the weekly round up of singles and albums will appear at some point.
Blissing Me – Bjork – A-
No Dope On Sunday – Cyhi The Prynce – B+
Crumbs – DRAM – B+
The Beautiful And Damned – G-Eazy – C-
If All I Was Was Black – Mavis Staples – C+
Low In High Places – Morrissey – B+
Oblivion – T-Pain – B-
American Soul – U2 – B+