Category Archives: Album Streaming Links

Album Review -JET PLANE AND OXBOW – Shearwater

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Vote for this Review/Purchase on Amazon.com

Visit the Official Website of Shearwater

And as of 01/25/16 the full album is streaming live here:

Dear Music Appreciators,

When I press play on an opening track like “Prime,” the change is almost instant. The music I hear is so appealing it changes my life. The ordinary life becomes the extraordinary life just by virtue of the music, if only for a few minutes. Ironically, I don’t really even know what Jonathan Meiburg is singing about. I can’t easily understand all the lyrics, but it doesn’t matter. In this case it’s all about the music and the feeling. And to me, music like this feels amazing. But why? It’s that electronic hook mainly. It lights up something inside me – some kind of internal recognition receptor turns on and just, like, glows. It’s like something was out there, or maybe it was inside me, and I knew it was there but I couldn’t find it, so I couldn’t say, it but I can recognize it when I hear the band play it.

And that’s just the first song.

And no, they’re not all like that. Musicians can’t be magicians every time. But in the case of JET PLANE AND OXBOW, the power of Shearwater’s opening trick is strong enough to light a path all the way to the end of the album for both the band and their listeners.

Sincerely,

Constant Listener

Album Review – HEARTTHROB – Tegan and Sara

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Watch the video for “Closer” by Tegan and Sara on YouTube

Dear Music Appreciators,

One of the pleasures of reviewing music for the past year and a half has been discovering new bands – but in my case it has been less a case of discovering NEW bands, as discovering bands that are new to me.  Apparently Tegan and Sara have been around since the 90’s.  Didn’t know that.  I’d heard OF them but I’d never really HEARD them.

But let’s dispense with the usual summary/description/analysis stuff and simply say a few words in favor of this record in the hope that you’ll decide to experience it for yourself.

I was working on another review of a more serious sounding and self-important indie rock release, and although the record was pretty good, I was having trouble focusing.  I decided to take a break and try Tegan and Sara’s new dancey pop record HEARTTHROB instead.  Bingo.  Suddenly listening to music was fun again and I didn’t have to work so hard to like what I was hearing.  If some albums are like eating your vegetables and some albums are like eating your fruit, then I would say HEARTTHROB is a nice juicy peach.

Sincerely,

Constant Listener

P.S. As of 01/28/13 Rolling Stone is streaming the entire album here

Album Review – GOSSAMER – Passion Pit

Listen to the new album GOSSAMER by Passion Pit, streaming courtesy of NPR

Passion Pit

Dear Music Appreciators,

Passion Pit’s new album GOSSAMER bounces and pops with color and frenetic energy. Fuzzed out electro bass beats and poppy, high register vocals weave with skittery, electro soundscapes on one fascinating track after another. Fascinating, because for all the get-up-and-dance dynamic there’s an underlying sadness to many of the lyrics – which creates kind of a tasty musical sweet and sour effect. In other words, the album cover is right on target with its depiction of sunshine and clouds.

Sincerely,

Constant Listener

Album Review – HANDWRITTEN – The Gaslight Anthem

Listen to the new album HANDWRITTEN by The Gaslight Anthem, streaming courtesy of NPR

The Gaslight Anthem

Dear Music Appreciators,

I’m new to the Gaslight Anthem. At first listen their new album sounded to me like average rock music with cliché rock lyrics, sung by a passionate, standout rock front man.

But between the first listen and the second listen I found myself thinking about what I’d heard, that little snippets were stuck in my mind (a “whoa oh” here, an “oh sha la la” there), and that for some reason I wanted to hear it all again…

At second listen I found that even if (and “if” being the key word) my earlier criticisms were correct, maybe it didn’t matter all that much.

This is a catchy, driving, relatively unsophisticated, yet easily likeable rock and roll album. These guys get compared to Springsteen a lot. I’d say well, yes, I see that – but if they have to be compared to famous fellow Jersey boys then I feel they’re a little more like a scrappier, punkier Bon Jovi than Springsteen.

Notice the three different guitar approaches that open “45,” the ear tattooing guitar work on the last thirty seconds of “Mullholland Drive,” the throat shredding vocal accents on “Too Much Blood,” the mellow beauty of album closer “National Anthem” – all of these and many more memorable moments contribute to an overall impression that because they’ve clearly got heart, although these guys may not end up on the cover of Time, their music is certainly worth your time.

Sincerely,

Constant Listener