Lacona – 35/half of 70

Lacona – 35/half of 70 / 2007 Self / 2 Tracks / http://www.laconamusic.com /

 

The style of indie rock that Lacona plays is very influenced by the goth style that was largest in the earliest days of the nineties. An emotive set of vocals goes in and other key as the instrumentation creates a very dark and dingy backdrop for the aforementioned vocals. The vocals move in and out of multiple layers. The percussion during this track is not consistent enough to make a driving track, so the efforts forth and backwards make for a song that is unsure of where to go next. Lacona moves into some semblance of a cohesive sound towards the end of the track, but this is fleeting and it is soon after that the band moves back to the sound that started the disc. Continue reading “Lacona – 35/half of 70”

Sick Puppies – Dressed Up As Life

Sick Puppies – Dressed Up As Life / 2007 EMI / 12 Tracks / http://www.myspace.com/sickpuppies / http://wwv.virginrecords.com

“World” is the first track on “Dressed Up As Life”, and it shows Sick Puppies as a new rock band in the same vein as an Evans Blue or a Papa Roach. This means that the band has a post-grunge feel that unites the earlier style with hints of pop-punk and Goo Goo Dolls like pop-rock to make the band’s sound. The first track is strong but it does not distinguish Sick Puppies as being fundamentally different from any other band on the market. It does set up the rest of the disc, and hints of At The Drive-In guitars make the track interesting, but ultimately one that will operate as a lead in to the single worthy tracks. Continue reading “Sick Puppies – Dressed Up As Life”

The Eclectic Collective – The Flux

The Eclectic Collective – The Flux / 2007 Self / 7 Tracks / http://www.ecbeats.com /

The Eclectic Collective started out around 2003 to take the world over with their own brand of rock. This marks their second album, released a year after their debut album “Time Flies”. The first track on “The Flux” is “Ocean of Tears”, and it shows that The Eclectic Collective love blending an older, Eagles type of rock with the more current Fall Out Boy interpretation of emo music. This means that the band relates to a larger segment of the listening populace, and when the act throws in some horns, they increase that possible leadership to include both the ska and Chicago fans. The band lives up to their “eclectic” name from the outset of “The Flux”. Continue reading “The Eclectic Collective – The Flux”

Slide Show Baby – S/T

Slide Show Baby – S/T / 2007 Moraiath / 11 Tracks / http://www.slideshowbaby.com /

“Long Long Road” is a track that starts with splashy drums. That’s a good thing. However, it sounds like the violin that is present during points of this track is created in Cakewalk and pandered as real. While I have no problem with how they have created the lines (real or through a program), it just has a feel that is not completely convincing. This is what happened at points during the Bloody Irish Boys album, but Slide Show Baby’s violin sounds even less realistic than did the BIB’s. Continue reading “Slide Show Baby – S/T”

Seeking the Lotus #5

Seeking the Lotus #5 / $1.50 / 1:00 / 20M / http://www.seekingthelotus.com /

Seeking the Lotus is a zine that tries to educate individuals about Buddhism without going into complicated discussions of philosophy. This is a good thing. Reading like a “Buddhism For Dummies”, albeit with a much more serious and illustrative tone, Seeking the Lotus is a benefit for anyone that wishes to look into what Buddhism is and what it has to offer. Aside from describing the history, past and present, of Buddhism, Celeste (the editor) gives individuals a look into eir own life. Specifically, many of the examples ey gives of hard to understand philosophical tenets concern eir. This helps individuals understand more than merely repeating dogmatic instructions. Finally, Seeking The Lotus is completed with the inclusion of book reviews of works that are relevant to Buddhism. This means that individuals are given a solid primer about Buddhism all in the same of 20 pages. For individuals that want more education, citations are ample, and there are four preceding issues of Seeking the Lotus to read through as well. While I do not know Celeste, I believe that ey would be happy to answer any lingering questions that one may have about Buddhism, or at least point someone in the right way. Unfortunately, it looks like this was the final issue of the magazine (the website is not updated any further), but here’s to hoping that Celeste either has continued with the magazine or will continue in the months ahead. It is much too valuable of a resource to miss out on, even if the reader is anti-religion in all forms.

Rating: 8.6/10

The Morning Pages – The Company You Keep

The Morning Pages – The Company You Keep / 2007 Zealous / 6 Tracks / http://www.themorningpages.com /

For some reason, the first band I think of when I listen to The Morning Pages has to be Led Zeppelin. The music that is present on “The Company You Keep” is couched in an earlier style of rock. The vocals are the focal point of a track like “It Makes Me Cry”, but this does not mean that the instruments bend over completely. Rather, the instruments contribute to the full sound of the band. However much the band sounds as if they are from a different time period, the band’s ability as musicians is enough to make the compositions on “The Company You Keep” sound vibrant, popping freshly in listeners’ ears. Continue reading “The Morning Pages – The Company You Keep”

Moneybrother – They’re Building Walls Around Us

Moneybrother  – They’re Building Walls Around Us / 2006 Sabot / 6 Tracks / http://www.moneybrother.net / http://www.sabotproductions.net /

I never had the chance to hear anything from Moneybrother’s last outfit, Monster. This Swedish rocker starts off “They’re Building Walls Around Us” with a track that is heavily influenced by the disco rock of the seventies. However, “They’re Building Walls Around Us” is a track that has a vitality that shines through to the current; this is heard most during the chorus, when a few extra voices interject at all the right times. Continue reading “Moneybrother – They’re Building Walls Around Us”

V/A – Gypsy Groove

V/A – Gypsy Groove / 2007 Putomayo Grooves / 11 Tracks / http://www.putumayo.com /

I must admit, before sticking in “Gypsy Groove” to my CD player, I had not hear anything from the dance scenes present in Eastern Europe, beyond what was played during earlier Eurovision song contests. Even then, these tracks were ones that I did not pay much in the way of attention to. However, with !DelaDap’s “Zsa Manca”, I regret not giving this genre a little more time. “Zsa Manca” is a track that blends new and traditional styles to make a vibrant and vital dance track, something that is chill while still having a quick beat. Continue reading “V/A – Gypsy Groove”

Paul McCartney – Memory’s Almost Full

Paul McCartney – Memory’s Almost Full / 2007 MPI / 13 Tracks / http://www.paulmccartney.com /

Obviously, this is the new album by Paul McCartney of the Beatles. Individuals should know eir as a former member of the Beatles and Wings, and for being a prolific solo artist in eir own right. However, this is the first time as a music reviewer that I have had a chance to hear McCartney’s work when it was still new (in a reviewing format, that is). The first track on the disc is “Dance Tonight”, and it is a fairly simple track, with little more than a guitar line and a percussive line providing the backdrop for McCartney. Continue reading “Paul McCartney – Memory’s Almost Full”