Slaughterhouse 3 – S/T

Slaughterhouse 3 – S/T / 2006 Abstract Logix / 11 Tracks / http://www.abstractlogix.com /

There is a lot of Primus present in Slaughterhouse 3. This is due to the fact that the band starts out the disc with a self-titled track that has the same eclectic sound as what has been crafted in the past by bands like Primus and To My Surprise. There is a little bit more funk and jazz present than in the latter’s composition, but there is more than a passing comparison to be made. What could be done to increase the allure of this album would be to add a set of vocals at specific times. Continue reading “Slaughterhouse 3 – S/T”

Charles Mingus Sextet With Eric Dolphy – Cornell 1964

Charles Mingus Sextet With Eric Dolphy – Cornell 1964 / 2007 Blue Note / 9 Tracks / http://www.bluenote.com /

I am not the most well versed individual when it comes to blues and jazz music. As one can glean from the artists present in the title of this disc (Charles Mingus and Eric Dolphy), this is a jazz album. The fifties and sixties were an interesting time for jazz music, as it saw the creation of new styles that challenged the norms, while the older styles still had a number of adherents. The work done by the Charles Mingus Sextet/Dolphy is more along the classical jazz side of things. “Sophisticated Lady” shows a breakdown of some of these earlier styles, as the bass that stands as a focal point to the disc bounces all across the spectrum. Without anything more in terms of structure to constrain this instrument, what results during “Sophisticated Lady” is something that is fairly open-ended. Despite the fact that this was recorded live, the confident arrangements that are present during the aforementioned “Sophisticated Lady” sound almost as clear as if individuals were sitting in the stage that day. Continue reading “Charles Mingus Sextet With Eric Dolphy – Cornell 1964”

Young Stunna – The Best of Me

Young Stunna – The Best of Me / 2007 RJM / 19 Tracks / http://www.rjmrecords.com /

There are a number of independent rappers that are trying to ply their trade in the current perio.d So many of them suck that it means finding a halfway decent rapper is a shore in and of itself. Many times, there are a few strong tracks on a disc and about ten times the amount of chaff present. This could be through having too many tracks, having individuals guest on a track that should never get near a mic, and having lackadaisical backing beats that do nothing for the flow of the rapper. Continue reading “Young Stunna – The Best of Me”

Fast Computers – Heart Geometry

Fast Computers – Heart Geometry / 2007 Self / 11 Tracks / http://www.thefastcomputers.com /

The synth lines that start out “Sweden Hasn’t Changed, You Have” will undoubtedly remind individuals of The Psychedelic Furs. The fact that the book has pictures from a library further gives individuals an eighties type of feel. The band shifts things up enough that it does not last; a song like “How Many Times” brings Fast Computers into a very plain type of indie rock that has all of the trappings of a nineties track but is couched heavily in the “That Thing You Do” sound of the sixties. Hints of Blur become evident during this track, and while it does not have the distinct electronic sound to the track that the beginning of the disc did, it allows the band to craft a cohesive sound to “Heart Geometry”. Continue reading “Fast Computers – Heart Geometry”

Chris Letcher – Frieze

Chris Letcher – Frieze / 2007 2Feet / 15 Tracks / http://www.sheergroup.com / http://www.2feetmusic.com /

The opening to “Frieze” starts off slowly with what sounds like a movie quote opening up “Deep Frieze”. However, it is the poppy style of indie rock that Letcher plays that immediately saves this album. There are more than passing comparisons to individuals like Matthew Sweet on “Deep Frieze”, and while the Avalanches meets Kid Koala-like scratching present during the track is an interesting addition, listeners can easily understand the indie tradition that Letcher is coming from. The thing that establishes Letcher as someone to pay attention to has to be the arrangements that end “Deep Frieze”. These arrangements speed up, slow down, and generally add delightful chaos to an already guilty pleasure. By the end of “Deep Frieze”, Letcher is in a good position. Continue reading “Chris Letcher – Frieze”

Buildings Breeding – S/T

Buildings Breeding – S/T / 2007 Mushpot / 12 Tracks / http://www.myspace.com/buildingsbredding / http://www.mushpotrecords.com /

Buildings Breeding play a dreamy type of indie cum pop rock music that will bring individuals back to the shoegazer genre present in the early to middle nineties. The use of clapping during the opening track “Stacking Up Reasons” further closes the sound in on the band, to make it seem as if the band is sitting in a living or dorm room with their fans. The slightly gritty vocals of Chris on the album have a number of influences that present themselves clearly during the songs on this self-titled album, but have enough of Larsen’s soul present to establish Buildings Breeding as a bold new band. Continue reading “Buildings Breeding – S/T”

AJ Rosales – Ultramarine

AJ Rosales – Ultramarine / 2007 Novelty / 13 Tracks / http://www.ajrosales.com /

AJ Rosales has a little bit of a Chris Cornell sound to eir voice during the opening of “Ultramarine”, the track “Alone Again”. The instrumentation may be bouncy and jangly, but there is nothing too terribly new provided by Rosales here. The California Dreams-like guitar line that shifts in and out of solos during “Alone Again” is nice but ultimately is dated. While there may not be anything special during this introductory track, Rosales does come forth confidently. This will help during the wind-swept, blues-ridden “Nominate”. The guitars again do not go into any arrangements that break themselves off from what has already been done before. That is the most major problem that Rosales confronts on eir “Ultramarine”. Any of a number of tracks could conceivably make it onto rock radio, country radio, or whatever Rosales feels that eir music would be best, but there is nothing here to distinguish Rosales from hundreds of other artists doing about the same style of music. Continue reading “AJ Rosales – Ultramarine”

Mando Diao – Ode To Ochrasy

Mando Diao – Ode To Ochrasy / 2007 Mute / 14 Tracks / http://www.mandodiao.com / http://www.mute.com /

I guess there are bands that are still trying to do the retro rock thing. Mando Diao does just that with their “Ode To Ochrasy”. This is the band’s third alum, and it shows that the act has had considerable time to go and polish their sound. While “Welcome Home, Luc Roitaille” is a solid track in its’ own right, the act brings forth more than a small share of rockabilly and ska music into “Killer Kaczynski”. This makes the track into the band’s first single, and while they are not trying to be like the Nekromantix, one can hear the same spastic energy present in both bands. Continue reading “Mando Diao – Ode To Ochrasy”

Kristie Nalley – The Pagan Romantics

Kristie Nalley – The Pagan Romantics / 2005 Self / 12 Tracks / http://www.kristienalley.com /

Despite the fact that all the documentation that I received with the disc said that the album was sanitized, I still felt as if unseen mold and mildew was messing with my breathing. Besides that, “The Pagan Romantics” is an okay album. “Barely Legal” starts out with Nalley’s vocals, and while different elements (drums, and then guitars) give their two cents, the focus is definitely on what Nalley is saying. The production is a little problematic during this track, as it pushes Nalley’s vocals down to a point where they struggle for dominance with the rest of the instruments. It is this that makes the opening to “The Pagan Romantics” shaky, but this is not of a magnitude that will make it impossible for Nalley to come back on subsequent tracks. Continue reading “Kristie Nalley – The Pagan Romantics”

Adrianne Lenker – Live At The Southern

Adrianne Lenker – Live At The Southern / 2007 Lucid / 17 Tracks / 72 Minutes / http://www.adrianne.com /

Adrianne Lenker is an individual that has not reached eir 17th birthday yet. This album was released when ey was still 14 years old, and features eir in the focal point of each and every track in this CD and DVD set. Whether it is providing the vocals or stringing together a guitar line, Lenker is the energy behind the songs on this track. “Dig Down” is the first track on the CD, and showcases a down home, Bluesy type of sound. The only thing that could be construed as a weakness to this DVD is the microphone placement. Continue reading “Adrianne Lenker – Live At The Southern”