Sunday, 21 April 2013

Tape Deck Heart by Frank Turner

Rated: A Kind of Magic 

With the first single of the album i thought  that it could be a repetition of old tracks and albums but I was wrong.  This album has two very marked sides: the one influenced by Pop and one that is influenced by Punk but those two genres are very well merged by the intermediary Rock And Roll. 

A slightly different sound from Frank Turner (solo) previous album this is less acoustic and folky and so much more influenced and closely to his other works/bands like Million Dead and Möngöl Hörde but with a little pop beat. Many songs have a very Pop-y style revealing also a new side of Mr. Turner (Losing Days,The Way I Tend To Be,Polaroid Picture,Time Machine) that have little twists that joint them with the most punk side of the album (Plain Sailing Weather,Four Simple Words) and it's rock and roll what pulls them together. Also there are many new sounds mixed to Frank Turner's allure like more piano that gives a lot like a saloon sensation, very charming (Oh Brother,Good & Gone); there's  more electric guitars, guitars and drums glisten more than in past works where voice was more relevant,in the way that drive you through the song, and sound a lot more modern (The Fisher King Blue) and much harder. 

The album is a bit to long so as for the songs but with the time it gets interesting and more likely to the style of previous records . At the beginning the English vibe is putted away and sounds more international, also is a little weak because songs tend to extend far too much, another new thing, and the magic gets a bit lost. As time passes the album turns more heavier as for music and feelings,more melancholia (Cowboy Chords) and cheerfulness that could be labeled as Brit-pop , there's a more personal sensation and more polished sound which are also an improvement,no that old stuff wasn't but is good to put  little more details.At moments it could resembles Weezer or Blue October trying to play folk because of the atmosphere but it's a lot better . 

The album is pretty well built,it is alternating tranquility and sweetness ( Tell Tale Signs ,Anymore,Wherefore Art Thou Gene Simmons) with fun and craziness (Recovery,We Shall Not Overcome). All have a nice little quirks (Undeveloped Film) of rock and roll and "darkness"/mischievousness/playfulness in the most Frank Turner way so the record is so powerful and encouraging, classic from FT, but now with a few more things. The only problem is that is too long that playing back to back with the previous records it would take the charm off. 

Recommend:The Way I Tend  Tell Tale Signs, Four Simple Words, Polaroid Picture, Anymore, Oh Brother,Broken Piano, Undeveloped Film,Cowboy Chords

Bankrupt! by Phoenix

Rated:Lucy in the Sky  

Bankrupt! is a new typical album from Phoenix but with many stronger sounds and transporting music.

It is , and will be, hard to determinate from what decade  this great album comes from and is inspired  because sound so timeless,it is  from 2010's,I know,but doesn't boast it . It is, obliviously, carrying a 00's vibe (S.O.S. in Bel Air) but goes beyond to capture the modern wave but with vintage bits(Entertainment), so it is very interesting,somehow trippy, balmy  and entertaining. With beats that can have a disco/jazzy sensation and that resemble too much to Jamiroquai (Trying to Be Cool) the record have a lot of diversity to offer,it also have rock and roll (Don't) ,a little dose of "Neo Soul"  in 'Chloroform', and the greatest surprise is the scifi style that puts all together, that comes out specially in songs like 'Bankrupt !' which is a track that has a sound like from a futuristic flute and beautiful notes that are also spread in every song of the album.

Even tough there are many joyful sounds there is a strong presence of Pheonix's essence that is trying and playing with new beats that are powerful, encouraging and sweet. There is plenty of fun in the album from the beginning to the very end ,'Oblique City' , which is a song that is a gentle reminder of band's style [in case you didn't heard in previous 9 songs] , the album goes alternating fast tracks (Drakkar Noir) with modernity (The Real Thing) and more tranquil but edgy songs (Bourgeois).

In conclusion Bankrupt! is a very complete album in their very own band style that will make you have fun and have the ability to transport you to an enigmatic magical place. The right amount of synths and everything is so well placed, that in my opinion is the most solid album of the band and is eclectic but yet with band's unique sound.

Recommended: The Real Thing,Bankrupt!,Chloroform,Bourgeois,Trying to Be Cool

Sunday, 14 April 2013

Save Rock And Roll by Fall Out Boy

Rated:We're Not Gonna Take it 

Like a time machine this album take us back to circa 2004-2007 where this band has its heyday.It is good in the way that they can still do the same they did almost 10 years ago but in many ways more it is boring.

The album stars sampling Peter Fox's 'Alles Neu', which is already a song that samples [but does in the way that Plan B did it in iLL Manors] the song  'The Phoenix' is a nice introduction to the album and a proper presentation of what the album has to offer. The album has plenty of Pop mixed with some Punk-y vibe which actually makes the album sound a lot like Miley Cyrus beginnings or Avril Lavingne. The sound of the album also resembles the cover they did of Michael Jackson's 'Beat it' , by the way the album is too much influence of MJ (listen: The Mighty Fall). Another sound that they are "borrowing" is from the band FUN.  the style is in almost every song ( Young Volcanoes, Alone Together,Save Rock and Roll), so all these sounds make the album sound to be for the youth, with many attempts to create anthems but doesn't sound modern or reach the goal, it is just pretentious.

This record is trapped in 2007 and songs seems to be for that generation of teenagers, has moments where sounds a hard attempt to make it a sing-along tunes (Where Did The Party Go,My Songs Know What You Did In The Dark). Fall Out Boy are trying to repeat old tracks and instead of keeping the fans they put in hiatus for a while they're trying to capture the same generation they did in mid 00's but unfortunately that generation has grown up and the band haven't even they're trying to add modernity and electronic beats to the songs they sound old and repetitive.

The idea of the album is alright but it didn't achieved its goal,among the other issues, at some points voice is very weak and instruments playing out of time, is too much of the same over and over the only interesting bit is the duet with Cortney Love, even though it is amateur and off-key, but that is what it lacks in the album more playful and experimentation tracks, band took the easy ride and failed to be innovative because they are just doing exactly the same album that they could have done years ago.

Recommend: Just One Yesterday
No So: My Songs Know What You Did In The Dark,Miss Missing You, Save Rock and Roll,Where Did The Party Go

Mosquito by Yeah Yeah Yeahs

Rated: Music is my Radar 

New YYY's album is a exactly what a 'follow-up' should be. Nothing in particular that is so new but doesn't sound old or repetitive.The band keep their essence and has grown up and did some amazing tracks that will entertain for long time.

Although there a tiny problems, like that Karen O's voice sometimes get lost (Slave, Sacrilege) because music is harder and louder than previous albums,the record is a success because there is the remembrance of Yeah Yeah Yeahs past records and with their always dark but rogue style and now is mixed with little doses of ska (Under the Earth),new-wave,electronic-pop and psycho (These Paths)  and all is without being too obvious nor forced, are just little details that embellish already good tracks.At some moments we can hear like sequels of Fever To Tell and Show your Bones in the less polished tracks like 'Area 52' and 'Buried Alive' and sometimes there are more stylized beats that could have been part of previous band's album It's Blitz like songs 'Despair' or ' Subway', but all this sounds have been reinvented to create an album with many new sounds that still sound a lot like the band.

There is a great vibe of the 80's, that has also been in every YYY's Album, but managed to be very contemporaneous and wilder. The album has its moments of craziness that might sound a bit controlled but could aspire to be complete bonkers as live tracks. The song that names the record 'Mosquito' has elements taken from new wave, that almost sound like Talking Heads but in a more party mode à la YYY's , in my opinion could been more explosive. All the power and energy variates during the album to make it entertaining and there are moments which you will want to get up and dance and in others you will feel overwhelmed,heavy, and haunted.

With their classic but updated style Yeah Yeah Yeahs scored another album that will keep  surprising whenever is played. Perhaps it is not a big highlight but is a great addition to all the nice work the band has done and the last song of the album , 'Wedding Song', is a good fusion of all what the band was, is and hopefully will be. Experimentation has made the album and the band be interesting and fresh,not a doing the same over again but not going out of their line, their essence, always edgy, mysterious and fun.

Recommend: Despair,Wedding Song, Sacrilege,Under the Earth, These Paths,Area 52

Sunday, 7 April 2013

Overgrown by James Blake

Rated: Music is my Radar 

The second album from this young man is much mature that it could appear. Edgier and more aggressive than its predecessor this album has everything that a good record needs, although it has certain monotony,it managed to entertain and be epic, is someone who is playing and having fun.

Old fashioned R&B mixed with kind of futuristic electronic (Life Round Here) makes a modern and not cliche electro-pop/clubbing album. Little bits of experimental electronic  are fussionated with other rhythms to make powerful chilling songs, 'Overgrown' is a great introduction to what is coming,tranquil and overwhelming songs but still full of energy and a cozy sensation. Voice and music have a great balance, no one shades the other, both are really strong and have a mysterious feeling.

Every song is so attached to the other and could it been boring if it wasn't for the twists all over the album, that probably are not so wild but are edgy and very well placed. Every song has a twist, a soul-ish piano (To the Last) , vintage vibes(Dim), synths(Our Love Comes Back) and many variations that are on the same line but is not boring because this arousal,not so random, tiny beats and very the intrigue . 'Voyeur' Is the most daring song and have glimpses of samba and spice up the record a little more and alongside with 'Digital Lion' divides the album, so the album can have it moments of darkness,fun, experimentation and even bits of ,sort of, sexual clubbing behavior and all in little doses.

A very complete and loose/relaxed album from a man that is young but very wise to blend many things without failing and that is trying new things without losing his essence. Overgrown is what a second album should be a perfect balance of what made first record succeed mixed with new sounds that if very fresh and timeless at the same time.

Recommend: Overgrown, Life Round Here,Voyeur,To the Last

Paramore [Self-titled] by Paramore

Rated:Mr. Personality

Well... not as attractive as you expect and too lame to be a self-titled album because the only thing that identify Paramore on the album is that: the title. It seems like the  band has been declining too much and are  so far from firsts two albums, feels like they had lost their essence and  are bit empty or like they are trying to imitate so hard, something is not right.

Paramore stream new single 'Now' and reveal album artworkThe record is not so bad, has its diversity, glimpses of punk  (Anklebiters) and even beats that could be inspired by late 70's early 80's  disco/funk (Ain't It Fun) and plenty of bubblegum pop that almost hit  One Direction style (Still Into You,Be Alone). The album, maybe, needs to be a bit heavy because 'Part II' [almost a copy of Evanescence]is as hard as the album  gets, and is not quite what the band has previously done nicely, there are moments where it somehow sounds like Paramore old tunes (Be Alone) but sounds forced. As a whole the album is very cheesy and faked [Please don't hate me] .

There's a huge lack of naturally and feeling because the songs that are more in the band's style are to repetitive, the band is trying too hard to repeat old  tracks. There's an absence of spontaneity and modernity, or to upgrade. Fortunately they achieved something with the last song,'Future', which is the most "experimental",fashionable and entertaining, the only song that is truly interesting with variations, power and personality.

So to sum-up is an album with little identity,and far too corny, needs more strong songs because starts like a Garbage wannabe,'Fast in My Car'  gives the idea that percussion gonna make a hard record,and probably it should had taken that, but then it all goes down  in 'Grow Up', which is not so bad, but sounds like is  a confusing kids song and from there the album gets weaker. The band should let loose and put their heart on it, the feeling is that it is other band playing to be Paramore attempting to sound like other bands. The interludes are quite something tho.

Recommended: Future
No So Much:Now,Daydreaming,Hate to See Your Heart Break,Fast in My Car