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Be Here Now: Snapshot Reviews Of New Album Releases, May 6th, 2014

Shahid Khan Rules

Shahid Khan Rules

Southsider – Atmosphere – Slug can rap but his songs are too dowdy and naming a song “Kanye West” just points to his problems – C

Childhood Dreams – Ben Harper, Ellen Harper – Who could possible complain about a major rock star making an album with his Mommy? I can. This is so twee and irritating it is unlistenable – D+

Data Panik Etcetera – Bis – The late great indie rock band who gave us The New Transistor Heroes put together some odds and sods from just before they called it a day and it sounds nearly exactly the way it always did: quirky, lively and credible – B+

Soul Power – Curtis Harding – Mixes guitar rock with r&b and quite successfully as well, but like so much of this stuff the songs aren’t quite strong enough. Everything else is in place but modern retro soul can’t seem to make the classics any more – B

All My Friends: Celebrating The Music Of Gregg Allman – V/A –Live long enough and you become respectable and get your own celebration and if you are good enough it will sound as good as this one does – B+

Luminous – The Horrors – I never quite bought into this band but having said that, this is a strring set of soundscape goth rock atmospherics – B

Storyline – Hunter Hayes – He looks so like Doogie Houser, MD – D

The Nihilist – Liam Finn – Neil’s kid (Kid?) gives quirk a whatever name on these nothing special set of pop rockers – C+

I Never Learn – Lykke Li – May I just note in passing that this is another Li album that leaves me stone cold. The extremely popular Swede has a way with a melody but her arrangements are too overworked and strenuous for my taste – C+

Hotel Cabana – Naughty Boy – We’ve been waiting for something to get excited about this week and here it is: Emili Sande’s producer with a handful of excellent soul dance UK syle. The Ella Eyre song is terrific, the (six) Emili tracks all fine, Ed Sheeran over emotes but what can you expect? Hey, there’s Professor Green! And altogether this feels like a state of the art superstar UK soul album – ALBUM OF THE WEEK – A-

All Or Nothing – Nikki Lane – Pretty good Americana with a nice twang to her voice – B

Candy For The Clowns – Nine Black Alps – Crunchy rock with annoying lead vocals that grow on you but not enough – C+

Corazon – Santana – A great guitarist, a handful of Latin American stars and some crap songs – B-

Shine On – Sarah McLachlan – A little less wimpy than usual… a very little – D+

Collabos – Strangulations –Tech N9ne – Lives up to its name and pretty lively electronica – B

Nikki Nack – Tune-Yard – The giveaway is the way they spell their name (I didn’t bother doing it here), kinda silly and annoying but it makes its point – B


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