Wednesday, January 11, 2006

In the Mix - January 2005

These are the albums I've been playing most in recent weeks.

Kanye West - Late Registration - I'm not a huge rap fan, but this is one of the best rap albums I've ever heard. Jon Brion's production is phenomenal, and the rhymes are great. "Touch the Sky" and "Roses" are the highlights, but all the tracks are pretty solid.

Tori Amos - Little Earthquakes - Tori does really strong rocking songs, as well as more introspective stuff. I like the props to Sandman in 'Tear in Your Hand' as well as the early 90s rockiness of 'Crucify.' The title track is another highlight.

The Zombies - Odyssey and Oracle - A 60s classic, most notable for the song "Time of the Season," but all the tracks on here are great. It's pop that sounds sunny and dark at the same time, most notably on the excellent "Rose for Emily."

The New Pornographers - Twin Cinema - The New Pornos are unstoppable when it comes to making really catchy power pop. This is my second favorite album of theirs right now, but it's growing on me. I'm looking forward to seeing them and Belle and Sebastian in March.

Junior Senior - Hey Hey My My Yo Yo - 'Taking My Time' is a wonderfully catchy track, and a number of tracks travel in the same territory as classic Michael Jackson. It's really fun, infectious dance pop.

Bruce Springsteen - Born to Run - It lives up to the hype. The title track is exhilirating, but the epic album closer 'Jungleland' is the real highlight, andthe album is notable for the great saxophone solos throughout, sax solos that don't sound like bad 80s sax or porn, not an easy feat.

Patti Smith - Horses - Like Born to Run, this is a 30 year old album that feels more fresh and relevant than nearly any of the rock put out today. 'Gloria' is a fantastic opener and she continues to rip through great songs building up to the ten minute 'Land' number, one of rock's great epics.

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