Tuesday, September 28, 2010

What is that Noise?

I recently heard that Neil Young was coming out with a new album, "Le Noise", due out September 28. I was so looking forward to hearing it!

Tonight on the way to Office Max for a new mouse... a song came on the radio. As I was listening, I first thought, "WHAT is this station playing?" I couldn't believe what I was hearing on my usually reliable FM station. The song was completely out of character for them.

My 2nd thought was, "Who IS this guy? He's trying too hard...." In the next instant, I recognized the voice - it was Neil Young!

The song was "Walk With Me", (click title to hear track!) but instead I wanted to run away. I know I am probably going to disappoint some die-hard Neil Young fans (myself included!) by saying that the tune was hard to listen to!

Missing from the track were Neil's charming yet quirky signature vocals. Instead it delivered the slash and burn of an over-played guitar. By mid-song, I began wondering if something was wrong with the man. It reads "psychedelic 60's trying too hard to advance to the new millennium but held back by the 70's".

The crying guitar measures seemed totally unnecessary and over-done. I could find no melody compelling me to sing along. The lyrics were insipid-such a surprise coming from the man who did "Needle & the Damage Done".

Some friends suggested that I not post this review until I listen to the entire album, but I call them as I hear them. I can only hope other tracks from the 8 song album, offer more promise and are easier on the ear!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Music-Trends Like Fashion

You've heard the saying, "don't throw out those bell bottoms from the 70's, they'll come back into style again someday"...
So too with trends in music. Many of the new bands are definitely styling some retro vibes.

Image of The Postmarks
Consider the Postmarks - a trio from Pompano Beach, Florida. Tim Yehezkely's lead vocals, and often her own fashion sense (see above photo) make me feel transported to the mod 60's. Jonathan Wilkins & Chris Moll (the other 2 of the trio) are multi-talented musicians, playing many instruments and arranging music with pure genius. Their track "My Lucky Charm" from Memoirs at the End of the World, is magically delicious! Groovy vibes made fresh with their Indie-pop sound.

Irish born songstress, Imelda May, is often described as "rockabilly" but the track "Johnny Got a Boom Boom" from her Love Tattoo album, has that 50's/60's jazz/beatnik sound. Not that I never was IN a beatnik club in the 60's, but I imagine it sounded like this! You can almost smell the clouds of cigarette smoke and hear the clink of bar glasses. The bass provides the perfect backdrop for Imelda's Kool-Kit delivery. She's outrageously sexy while exuding an untouchable class (think Audrey Hepburn as Holly Golightly) This track just settles in, forcing my foot to tap, and fingers to snap. Bongo bango, mingle mangle, ratatat, she's got all that.... (forgive my lame attempt at Beatnik poetry!)