The continuing saga of a wholly irreverent new way of reviewing albums!
It's like sitting in a room with a bunch of jaded music critics and
getting a snapshot of how they feel about an album. Honesty and first
impressions are the key to the Bargain Basement. (opinions expressed may not hold true after
repeated listenings to albums)
Allred - James Allred
Alan: Downbeat syncopated modern folk. Amazing guitar
playing, nice arrangements. Pink Floyd plays slow psychedelic
folk. William: Leonard Coehn with Al Stewart's voice. Stellar
guitar, spooky songs. Great record. Charles: Vocally & lyrically not interesting. However,
the guitar was salvageable, albeit overproduced. Jack: Nice guitar work, sounds like Bob Dylan.
- Holding On By The Blindfolds We Hide Behind
Alan: Excellent, highly melodic modern rock. Heavy guitars,
pounding rhythms, very lyrical poetry. Post-emo beauty. William: Hard rock emo with over-pronounced Bill Joe
vocal spitting. I'm ambry too, Ed. Charles: Structureless angst-driven heavy rock. Bland,
but not horrid. Jack: Passion and talent without direction. These boys
need structure & discipline and a chorus.
For Sleep - What To Do When You Are Dead
Alan: Excellent modern rock/metal/edgy emo album. Smooth
vocals, chunky guitars, pounding rhythms. Bloody brilliant. William: Not bad agro-pop fixated on death. The accompanying
booklet is instructional. Charles: Music like this makes it "cool" to
cry openly and still have full sleeve tattoos. Jack: Armor For Sleep: the other Jimmy Eat World. I like
the booklet. Very much.
Teeth - The Baby Teeth Album
Alan: 70's style light funk-rock with words that go in circles.
Cool keyboards & awesome drums. William: Canned Grand Lovin' Spoonfunk. Frizzy haired
out of range, tone & style yuck rock. Charles: A Grand Funk trainwreck that leaves me flat
as their vocals. Jack: Too funny to be bad. Too bad to be funny.
Kiss - Come Across
Alan: Dark, sonic Americana - beautiful instrumentation,
nice twangy guitars, coold rums, brilliant lyrics intensely
moody. William: Great bombastic Nick Cave stuff turning to insufferable
Dinosaur Jr. junior. Fantastic lyrics. Charles: Downbeat with gothic country undertones. Fully
the in-style & popular sound for "hip" indie bands.
Bravery - The Bravery
Alan: British garage disco music. Cool programming, cool
sounds, cool vocals. Disco drums still suck. William: "you spin me right round baby right round " Charles: Order a New World Cure DEVOid of originality,
and disco into obscurity. Jack: If you liked this shit in the 80's, your kids hate
Buildings - There Is A Problem With My Tape Recorder
Alan: Quirky sparse atmospheric synthesized ultra-light
drum'n'bass. Very cool sounds & textures. Lullabies for
nightmarish baby robots. William: The opposite of Einsturzende Neubauten. Music
made by and for insects. Irritating nonsense. Charles: Random, yet pleasing sounds of computer fucking
in the CGI generated moonlight. Jack: Crazy, experimental art stuff. I think your tape
player is fine.
Alan: Lush, epic pop music. Soaring vocals, excellent drumming
over OK Computer beds of sound. William: Monoxinal 3% by volume. Do not take Cetacea
if you suffer from depression or whining. Charles: This is the prog pretentiousness that caused
a generation of punks to rise up. Jack: Brit sounding art rock. Very interesting drums.
Churchills - The Odds Of Winning
Alan: Nicely produced modern rock. Perfect synthesizer usage,
great guitar tones. Dnady Warhols Squeeze-Fighting Foo. William: Winston & Ward make sugary Weezer snacks
in Rembrandts swill. Slick produced cup of sick. Charles: These guys should be on the radio! They sound
like everything else there. Jack: Standard pop rock. Not bad, not outstanding.
Peasant - Intentional Grounding
Alan: Dark pop-rock, loosely held together by great piano,
low guitars, and flat vocals. Somehow cool. William: Part Bob Dylan, part Lemonheads. The hero is
the brilliant/ bizarre imagery. Charles: RACTOR lives. Computer generated lyrics and
music from a fabric coated underground. Jack: Too well-read and clever-attempting for their own
disconnected pseudo-intellectual selves.
Eimerman - &I You
Alan: Super 80's-sounding melodic pop. Terrible drums. Daniel
Amos, Crack The Sky - cool vocal recording. William: Not without merit, Herb can turn a tune and
plays well enough but sing like a man. Charles: This is painfully bad, awful, shit. Please leave
the early 80's buried - please. And thanks. Jack: The return of the less talented Cat Stevens.
Escaped - The Escaped
Alan: Good, solid, high energy punk rock. Thick, meaty guitars.
Almost makes me want to fight. William: Like setting fire to the gas nozzle and shooting
flames at passing motorists. Charles: A Clear And Present Punk Rock. Punkrockalypse
Now. How Stella Got Her Punk Rock. Jack: Good old school, angry, punk rock.
Hayes - Go And Give The Guard A Break
Alan: Laid-back rootsy AC rock with brilliant vocalist.
Excellent lyrics, very well-produced, catchy tunes - and on
key! William: Joan Baez electric. She can sing and write,
the band can play. Better than we deserve. Charles: Country rock fusion gumbo done well a la Jane
Siberry meets Deana Carter.
Kings - The Kottonmouth Xperience DVD
Alan: A Hazy kaleidoscope that may or may not enhance your
pot smoking/music listening experience. William: As if the music wasn't grating enough, the video
will give you a migraine. Charles: Mind masturbation for mental midgets. Dope required
for appreciation. Jack: If you smoke, and like KMK, then you will love
this experience enhancing audio/visual experience.
- Dirt Floor Hotel Part 1
Alan: Thick, moody, ambient, downbeat beauty - deep vocals,
intriguing lyric, cool sounds. Red House Painters-ish. William: Deep, slow, echoey and gorgeous. Like a very
depressed Chris Isaac. Incredible. Charles: This band makes me sad and reflective
I love it! I want more. Jack: Warning: do not operate heavy machinery while listening
to this album.
Lucas - Giving It Back
Alan: Brilliant acoustic guitar player - songs of great
poetry, entrancing stories. SUPREME GUITAR PLAYING - wonderful! William: Deft guitar-folk. Enjoyable songwriting and
decent singing. Play all night, but ditch the back up singers. Charles: Yup - a guy and a guitar - yup -uhhuh - yup. Jack: Guitar playing guy singing nice songs.
Paul Jr. Band - Slingshot
Alan: Good, solid jamming bar rock. Hints of Cheap Trick,
Vapors, 77s, Widespread Panic, Nick Lowe. William: And in the center square Lynn Paul. This
guy has the Knack to use Cheap Tricks. Charles: White trash meets Phish. Shake gently, add cigarette
butts to taste. Jack: Cheesy 40-something bar rock.
McKenzie - Nine 9
Alan: Deliciously soulful acoustic folk with beautifully
smoky silk-voiced chanteuse. Excellent songwriting, production,
playing. William: Simple and stirring arrangements, beautiful
voice, lovely folk playing. Quite impressive. Charles: Yup - a girl and her guitar - yup - uhhuh -
yup. Jack: Folky, country, acoustic girl stuff. Nice voice
Brutalism - 2001-2003
Alan: The most aggressive (later) Gang Of Four cover band
I've ever heard. Noisy, fast, hard. William: No metal, clever hardcore rhythms, tasty bass
lines. Like Cro-mags, but lighter. Charles: Wanna-be Swedish hardcore band? Comes up just
short. Jack: Brutal doesn't begin to describe the beating these
Genius - How To Be Popular
Alan: Oddly quirky Jellyfish-style pop music, 80's guitars,
70's harmonies, 90's arrangements. Brilliantly groovy, strangely
cool. William: Sickening jazz-rock with a vocalist emulating
a clarinet. Charles: Is genius self declared? Chicago meets a male
Alanis Morissette and a bored recording tech. Jack: That's a lot of horns, man! Look at the list! Wild,
Pretti - Cuidado Mano
Alan: Amazing guitar player struts his Latin stuff on smooth
tracks. Bosssa nova, jazz, rock brilliance. William: Very well done Brazilian samba, rock and ballads.
The name says it all. Charles: Basic, competent bossa nova. Paul Simon, Santana,
&The Gipsy Kings do guest spots? Jack: Warning: only for people who like getting laid.
Sartain - The Listening Booth
Alan: The one-man quirky indie rock machine. Great piano
lines, enthralling llyrics, cool songs. William: Get out, mom I'm recording! Edgy, punctuated
indie piano. Talent show dropout. Charles: Make like a tree and find a key. Jack: I bet this guy wears corduroy pants all the time.
Sassano - Casting Shadows
Alan: Slightly off-key AAA-bar rock doing its best to sound
like Chrissie Hynde. Passable, not great. William: Straight-ahead roots rock, could do with more
melody and oomph from the vocals. Charles: Angsty, roots rock that just sits there. Shake
and Bake music. Jack: People should sing in their range and avoid
Ani DiFranco rhythms.
American - Strong For The Future
Alan: Fascinating ambient soundscapes moving from minimalist
to near drum'n'bass. Brilliant sounds, cool arrangements, neat
poetry. William: Tripped-out manipulated sounds, soothing and
curious, warped vocal treatment. Charles: Kraftwerk tranced to the gills and dragged into
the 90's. Jack: Silky smooth background music with occasional sonic
challenges & cool vocals.
Day Slide - Held Under
Alan: Very well written pop/rock music, touches of emo.
Good players, good singers = good rock. William: Decent R&B rock. I thought the singer was
black. Annoying guitar bits. Charles: And on the seventh day, they imitated. Jack: Uplifting rock music. Good sound and easy to listen
to songs. Well done, boys.
Stillway - Mell Of A Hess
Alan: Beautiful acoustic instrumental jazz-grass. Excellent
playing, lovely compositions, very sublime tones. Perfect! William: Baroque chamber music, vaudeville, and folk,
expertly & delicately executed. Painfully good. Charles: I learned what an octave violin is. This is
a great record! Jack: Very mellow folk with some jazz undertones.
Of Lights - Suit Of Lights
Alan: Clever lyrical flow on across-the-board musics. They
Might Be Giant Paul McCartneys. Fun, light, cool. William: Plodding dub-punk with stunted vocals giving
way to Himmelman/Costello wussiness. Confused. Charles: I don't know what to say - some good, some bad
- mostly bad.
Alan: Very heavy Australian rock - edgy but smooth, like
Big Sugar, BRMC, Garbage, Bush. Rock'N'Roll brilliance. William: Big dangerous sound like Babes In Toyland doing
Divinyls' songs. Makes me wet. Charles: Thick, meaty rock soup with a whiskey rough
aftertaste and a hint of vegemite. Jack: I wish all rock guitar was this thick and beautiful.
Glow - Rush Home
Alan: Lower indie-rock psychedelia, draws from Joy Division,
Slowdive, Durutti Column, Galaxy 500. Fascinating and cool. William: Early 90's British art noodling. Stay-in-your-seat
rock. Durutti Column VS. Unrest. Charles: Highway hypnosis or identity crisis? Severed
Joy Division Heads in your Wedding Present. Jack: Belle & Sebastian's drugged up cousin. Can't
talk coming down. Spacemen 3, sort of.