Saturday, August 8, 2009

The Sounds of 2009

Hello everyone! Sorry for the absence, but I had surgery on my sinuses and have been out of commission. Subsequently I haven't been out to see a lot of art around town, or movies for that matter. I have lost track of all the art, music, culture, and films happening around town-basically all the things that I am supposed to be reporting on in this forum to you all. Sorry about that, I hope you have managed to entertain yourselves without my advice these last few weeks!

I did watch a ton of DVDs during my recovery, movies like Defiance, or James Bond vs the Nazis, which was a perfectly mildly entertaining and somewhat interesting film. 2.5 Molos Oh, and I saw the first season of Mad Men, which more than lives up to it's reputation as a extremely well-written, intriguing show. Mad men is fascinating. It's not exactly a happy show, in fact it always left me in a kind of perplexing, slightly sour mood, but it's just so damn well done and mysterious I could never stop watching.

Moving on, I wanted to catch you all up on music in 2009. To be honest I really can't keep up with new music in any sort of comprehensive way anymore. There is just too much out there, on the web and at the stores. But here are a few short reviews of things that have fallen into my world of late:

Perhaps the most fun record I have heard in a while is Major Lazer's Guns Don't Kill People...Lazers Do.. It's a delight. Fully of dance hall and sort of reggae/hip hop/ experimental dance fusion songs. But in a kind of mainstream-accessible sort of way. It's fun and has good beats. Plus, you really really must find the video for Pon de Floor online-it will floor you. Features of lot of "passa passa" style dancing. After you watch that video, research passa passa. Kids these days. 3.5 Molos

There is a local rapper Shabazz who is a bit of a mystery. I'm not eve certain that he is local, but that is what I heard. Shabazz released a really good record, Palaces of light, that i picked up a few weeks ago and it's a really tight bunch of dark, clean, slightly thuggish but smooth rap. If that makes sense. Thuggish is probably the wrong word. Tough might be more accurate. I think it's a good evolution of local hip hop, but I'm not at all an expert on the scene, even if i am friends with a white rapper. If you are a fan of hip-hop get the record, that's all I'm going to say about it. 3.5 Molos

Sonic Youth keeps making albums, and I keep buying them. But it's getting a little old. Or they are getting a little old. Although the title of their new album, The Eternal, speaks to this rather directly!
Don't get me wrong, it's good, very good. The band really can do no wrong. But I think they have fallen into a realm of just making music for their fans. Their music is becoming very much variations-on-a-theme, when it used to be they were always pushing boundaries and exploring new unknown sounds. So they aren't innovators anymore, they wont blow your mind with this album. But if you are into their sound, you wont be disappointed. 3 Molos

, on the other hand, has still got some innovation going. Although at times it is starting to feel ever so slightly formulaic...but just slightly. His new album, Jhelli Beam, really encompasses what I trying to say here...songs alternate from blowing your mind, to being more like here's another classic Busdriver-sounding song. Although for such a weird, experimental hip hop artist like him, that's a funny thing to say. If you have never heard of Busdriver, you need to. He's really quite amazing, and this album is tight and delightful despite what I have said above-I think my only issue with him is he's just kind of hard to take a lot of. He's a hard artist to listen to his records front-to-back. Too much Busdriver is a bad thing, a little Busdriver is fucking amazing. 4 Molos

Alright kids, off to your record stores! And if anyone has any great musical suggestions for me, I'd love to hear them.

1 comment:

kitty wu said...

Check out Khingz.