Withered Hand/Lykke Li
Seeking Transcendence and Settling for Melody
Withered Hand: Good News (Absolutely Kosher)
Somebody with more youth cred than me should tell a world that takes EMA seriously about backslid Edinburgh Christian Dan Willson, whose wife bought him an acoustic guitar for his 30th birthday so he'd have something he could sing louder than. Quavering wordy tunes that make Belle and Sebastian sound like the Beach Boys, only he has a band and they really are tunes, he surveys his doubt-ridden world with uneasy resolve and disillusioned, self-deprecating wit. A few couplets of a shaky anthem called "Religious Songs" suggest what he's capable of: "I don't really know what the wine was for/cos if it was Jesus' blood wouldn't there be more"; "Well, I beat myself off when I sleep on your futon/I walk in the rain with my secondhand suit on"; "`How does he expect to be happy/when he listens to death metal bands.'" A MINUS
Lykke Li: Wounded Rhymes (Atlantic)
Since neither sex mystics nor Phil Spector fans favor deep thought or articulated emotion, I'm sure the lissome Li has no more to say in Swedish than in the English she writes in. The meaning's in the music, which to her considerable benefit shares the widespread Stockholm suspicion that the distinction between pop and dance music isn't worth troubling yourself over, but is nonetheless pinned for appearance's sake to the shades of yearning that mark it verbally. Philosophically and psychologically, it's pretty silly. But it would be priggish to show the door to a gal who can add so much pseudotribal percussion to a perfect 10 in the tune department. Ah to be young and full of come. Dumb I'll leave to those who think she's got a bead on tragedy and whatnot. A MINUS
At long last acid jazz (Swoon, "Pomegranate garrote"; Henri Lim, ("Aria [Ether Edit]")."
Joe, I have this. Just moved so my CDs won't be here until next week (or so) but I'll get on it when they arrive.
'Is that even possible? Dullness and catchiness are pretty much mutually exclusive concepts in my book. Catchy and annoying, now THAT happens all the time.'same thing backwards: You're being an @ss! ;p (Hehe!) I'll give you one band that will change your mind: Kings of Leon. (End of argument!)
Edit: OK, I'm guessing I should (you deserve) be moar explicit, here—a band can use dull riffs to interesting effects: such as, The Strokes (well, in Is This It [why isn't there a question mark?]) and Nouns. Both use very monotonous, repetitive riffage to exciting, interesting and enveloping effect! I feel that the riffs in (/on? What do we say for records—I feel 'in' makes moar sense!) Father, Son, Holy Ghost could be used to moar interesting effect, although, I am not saying the album is by no means bad/dull! I agree with Joey (to a lesser extent) that the lyrics are good. The track 'Vomit' being one of the better written ones—it could just do with an adrenaline kick!
'...Withered Hand, who deserve(s?) it...'Deserve, I think! (There's a chick in a lot of their the videos!)
I will be downloading the new Weeknd, if only to see whether their ridiculous fame has made them any moar upbeat! (I doubt it..!)
Current listening: the first two Ponys albums. Both the wild debut Laced With Romance, and the 2nd Albini-produced Celebration Castle sound better than ever. To me. Tonight.
If that means 'I don't give a fich,'
Yeah, more or less. I'm used to it. Happens all the time. Caliban is alter-ego. I would tell a little story about how I was given a sign as a grade-schooler that this would be the situation with my life but ... you know.
I've never understand thumbs down anyway. Are they supposed to mean that I disagree with your point, or that I don't like the music you are recommending, or that your avatar looks funny, or that I'm simply a butthead?I don't understand, either. It's a serious lapse. "Up" means I like this. Okay. "Down" means I don't like this? Not clear. This is ugly/stupid/wrong/offends me? Or, equally valid, as has been pointed out, This is sad/tragic development/something I lament?
Anyway, while I'm sure the default mode of thumbs up is not, I'd like to f*ck you, I suspect the default mode of thumbs down is simply F*ck You. And this is indeed a modern-discourse problem.
How about post-a-comment-about-this-comment structures?
"Thanks xgau, for always pointing us to only the best. "
So does this mean you've come around on Merrill, Nick?
Though I'm not as big on Parker as I used to be, I think he also covered the Trammps pretty well, too.Yes! "Hold Back the Night" is my most favorite thing he's ever done, and "I Want You Back" (the studio version) is not far behind.
I'm really interested to hear whether you think WTT is an A− or an A!I think this may limit the options more than is strictly necessary.
If you've got something to say, say it.Hmm, I don't know. While I do wonder about some of the thumbs-downs that I get, I don't think anyone would benefit would from a bunch of posts saying "stb, you're being an @ss". The thumbs-downs are a quick and easy way to state one's disagreement with minimal disruption. They can be used for good or for evil.
I just think Girls' riffs are, while catchy, a little dull.Is that even possible? Dullness and catchiness are pretty much mutually exclusive concepts in my book. Catchy and annoying, now THAT happens all the time.
about the blogger
Starting in 1967, Robert Christgau has covered popular music for The Village Voice, Esquire, Blender, Playboy, Rolling Stone, and many other publications. He teaches in New York University's Clive Davis Department of Recorded Music, maintains a comprehensive website at robertchristgau.com, and has published five books based on his journalism. He has written for MSN Music since 2006.