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The Early Bird: New Recorded Releases 2-11-22 – 2-17-22 Reviewed

Ed Sheeran continues to prove himself a King of MOR and on his later single “The Joker And The Queen” he pours clotted cream mixed with maple syrup and has us gargle with it on a variant on “The Rainbow Song”. The video is just waiting on an exchange of gifts to award it the John Lewis and Partners commercial bathos of 2022. But before you can get too milky and milquetoast, please note that bestie needed a writing credit that wasn’t there on the album before she added her voice (Grade: C-).

In albums, Shamir returns with his gay agenda on Heterosexuality, now front and certain on a hip hop productions, synth pop underlining, industrial strength fresh beats and Shamir’s shimmering falsetto, try the gorgeous “Caught Up” (Grade: A-), George Formby was a big time dancehall (I mean UK dancehall, read Vaudeville here), comedian and comedic singer with either the banjo or the ukulele: considered a working class icon, Formby defined the change occurring between the ruling class and the working poor: consider him a principal on the development between Victoria and the collapse of Rule Britannia and though there is only 24 tracks on “George Formby My Ukulele” still, oh me oh my there, is “Leaning On The Lamppost” (Grade: A), I went to see Spoon at Radio City Music Hall -my fifth concert in a row and I was really tired and I hated them, my review was crap but it wasn’t just me, and despite attempts over the years to make it up I can’t take the indie rockers (rocker, Britt Daniel). Lucifer On The Sofa is another collection seeped in whateverism… maybe try opener “Held” or maybe “Astral Jacket” though that’s a stretch (Grade: C), is Kim Petras the biggest transgendered pop performer? Maybe third after Laura Jane Grace and Anohni. I did see Kim once and she wasn’t ready for Radio City at all, but her debut was good and Slut Pop is better, sex songs for deep house fans (plus she has great legs). Only seven tracks? Maybe she’s still dropping songs but so far Slut Pop it is one of the year’s best (Grade: A-), only four tracks on the first post-breakthrough country gay guy Orville Peck on Bronco: Chapter 1, all good and the western in the sands of Tombstone, er, Daytona on “Daytona Sands” (Grade: B+).

Over at singles, I reviewed Regina Bonelli’s epic version of Gregg Allman’s “It’s Not My Cross To Bear” (here) (Grade: A) , this is how do you do trap on a track where Future finds Valentine’s Day, well, taxing, it’s good enough though all eyes are on his upcoming production on Donda 2 (Grade: B+), I swallowed my tongue and bought a tix to the Jack White “no cell phones” (note to self: bring paperback) after the first song on his upcoming album, “Love Is Selfish”, blew me away, the second song is a more typical blues workout “Fear Of The Dawn” (Grade: B).

Finally, Celebrity Skin is to Live Through This what Siamese Dreams is to Nevermind, and if that sounds like an insult it is more like a positive reassessment, and if I didn’t think so Doja Cat’s find the hook and repeat when necessary on the title track “Celebrity SKin” is great and continues to place nowhere to put the EDM is singer songwriter cross faded (Grade: B+)

The Joker And The Queen – Ed Sheeran, Taylor Swift – C-

Worst Day – Future – B+

George Formby My Ukulele – George Formby – A

Fear Of The Dawn – Jack White – B

Slut Pop – Kim Petras – A-

Bronco: Chapter 1 – Orville Pecker – B+

It’s Not My Cross To Bear – Regina Bonelli – A

Heterosexuality – Shamir – A-

Lucifer On The Sofa – Spoon – C

Slut Pop – Kim Petras – A-

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