Sunday, November 23, 2008

Listen Up

Does anyone know of a widget site that would give me a shelf of album covers just like the Shelfari one for my books at left? I haven’t found one that will display and rate music the way that one is doing books, so let me know if you are aware of such an item.


Here’s some of the music I’ve been buying and what I think of it.

Queen + Paul Rodgers = The Cosmos Rocks

Um. No. No it doesn’t. As a rabid Queen fan (OK, in Junior High) I was hoping one of my favorite singers of all times, Paul Rodgers would bring something cool to this Freddie-less landscape. Personally, I’d pay to hear Paul read from the phone book, that’s how much I like his voice.

Perhaps that would have been more melodious. I mean, there are a few mediocre tracks here, but that does not a Queen album make. Besides, how the hell are they calling this Queen? Just because you can do something legally, doesn’t mean you should. I think the absent John Deacon is getting the last laugh here.

This music just doesn’t rock. I can tell Brian wrote most of the lyrics, but there is no credit on the songs, so there’s no proof. If this is where Brian wants to go, fine, but it’s not rock, and it’s not Queen. Roger(s), slap him, wouldja?

Since I’m never going to see my $11.88 again all I can hope is that Paul Rodgers was paid handsomely and the check cleared. C’mon, guys. Everyone here can do better.

Grade:C- Below Average.

Def Leppard The Sparkle Lounge

So here’s what happened to Queen! Def Leppard locked themselves in their room and listened to all the classic Queen albums fifty thousand times – no, wait, that was me, circa 1977…

Actually, the Lep has listed Queen as a major influence for years and has included a nod or two to them in their lyrics over the years. Now it seems they have run out of their own ideas and decided to go all out and out Rhapsody the real McCoy.. and in spots here, they actually pull it off. This is no Hysteria, but that’s ok. They are trying to make new and inventive music and I can understand that.

Grade: B- More Pyromania, Less Copymania next time, OK?

Alanis Morissette Flavors of Entanglement

Guess who got a synthesizer for Christmas?

Sorry, but there was way too much techno-funk syntho-sound for my taste here. As usual, the lyrics are solid and the emotion real, it was just the musical arrangements and instrumentation that had me hung up. Oh, and I was hoping for way more dirt on her recent breakup ala You Oughta Know. Guess she went and got all mature on me.

Grade: B- But that’s only because her other albums were so incredibly strong.

AC/DC Black Ice

Now here’s a band that refuses to mature or evolve! They have sounded the same for thirty years. Thank God! At least I got what I paid for. Music to dance, er, drink to.

Grade: B

Coldplay Viva La Vida

I have never listened to Coldplay before, so I plead total ignorance of any other work they may have done. Why did I even show up to this party, let alone years late? Because the title track is so awesome. Love Violet Hill too. Maybe I’ll check out some other albums.

Grade B+

Whitesnake Good to Be Bad

Ah… the Dr. Seuss of Rock and Roll. Dr. Seuss, as you may recall, was challenged to write a children’s book using a vocabulary of only 100 words. Voila! The iconic Cat in the Hat was born.

Coverdale and crew have been using the same old tired lyrics in song after song for centuries. Yet somehow, I keep coming back for more. More Coverdale, that is… If you thought listening to the phone book was silly, I’d pay just to see this guy stand on stage and flip his hair back a few times. And that voice!! Who cares it has nothing profound to say? You want conversation? Call Henry Kissinger. You want sex? Call David Coverdale. (I’d like to.)
Most songs on this album are pretty blah, but there are a few good ones, including Call On Me and A Fool in Love. Suspiciously, they added a second CD of live greatest hits. Even they didn’t think this would sell on its own.

Grade: C Try harder! But tour anyway. Please!

Nickelback Dark Horse

Only the critics consider Nickleback a dark horse. I knew this pony had legs long ago. Of all reviewed today, this is the best effort for the band in question. It continued prior work and expanded on it in fresh ways. What’s not to love about lyrics like ‘you look better with something in your mouth’? Intriguing mix of ballads, ‘message songs’ and smutty rockers. You’ll see me front and center at their next concert!

Grade: A- Not quite as strong as their last effort, but good. Chad, do something with that hair. Wavy is better.

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