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Be Here Now: New Albums Reviewed 2-17-15


Album Of The week, February 16th, 2015


Next Year People – Colin Hay – The Men At Work lead singer is more a singer songwriter than pop rock star here, and if had a coupla more songs as good as “If I Had Been A Better Man” he might have done a real winner on his hand.  The voice is a little light as well – B-

Love Stuff – Elle King – You thought this was an EDM popstar as well? You can’t judge an album by its cover and this is pretty darn good rock maneuver between rock, folk, and a Billie Holidayish vocal, Maybe she is America’s sweetheart – B

True Romance – Estelle – Remember when she was the next big thing with “American Girl”? Three albums later, she still has the voice and the songs are pretty good, but she sounds a litte unsure of how to sell em. She has released five songs off this and none clicked because the sound is too obtuse for soul and too old fashioned for new r&b. But they are really good, especially “Time Share (Suit 509)” – B+

Ibeyi – Ibeyo – electronica bad vibes by twin sisters from Paris. eh? Oh, its on XL – B-

Smoke + Mirrors – Imaginary Dragons – They were an ordinary rock band who got very lucky when producer Alex da Kid reckoned you could up sales with heavy EDM beats. Here is more of the same, and if it sells it’ll be a good album and if it doesn’t, it won’t – C-

Vestiges And Claws – Jose Gonzales – This guy is the lead singer of Junip… and it shows – C

Guitars And Microphones – Kate Pierson – Not quite simply B-52s without the rest of the band, this is less well crafted disco and much more singer songwriter but well crafted as well. Call it new wave and put “Throw Down The Roses” on repeat – B+

Hold Fast  – Letts – Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros lead singer, produced by Marcus Mumford, so it could be twee folkieness and veers close from time to time, but the songs are very very strong and the production is sweet and clean. An addictive, talented album, all the more surprising if you’re used to a steady diet of Edward Sharpe – ALBUM OF THE WEEK -A-

Easy Skanking In Boston ’78 – Bob Marley And the Wailers – what’s not to like? No, it isn”t Live In London, but the mix is fine, the sound clean and it is Bob Marley Live – B+

Mono – The Mavericks – the follow up to 2013’s excellent Tex Mex Americana In Time  is no better and certainly no worse, with yet more of a patented swing sound made for dancing, but old fashioned dancing. Raul Malo has been doing this for decades but this is only The Mavericks second album since they reformed. It has the ease of professionals doing it right, though a little top heavy with goodies. “What Am I Supposed To Do” is doo wop that the Silhouettes would approve of and then it veers into rock and roll and that’s typical  – A-

Mourn – Mourn – Give these moody hard rock folks one thing,, they don’t mind being unpopular – C

Advice From Paradise – Nedelle Torrissi – Journeywoman indie stalwart steps into the limelight with an excellent collection of jazz and soul lo fisih indie tracks. Brooklyn’s answer to Natalie Prass. – B+

Talent Night At The Ashram – Sonny + The Sunsets – Around five years ago I thought these indie quirk rockers were ready for their close up, but a fluke hit single gave people the wrong impression and now they’re the definition of cult band – B-

Should The Light Go Out – Twin Rivers – Pretty good rock band from Vancouver, vocalist has a patentable sound and the band can go from country to garage rock with ease – B

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