Tuesday, December 17, 2013

One-sentence reviews #14

Over and out.


Bill Callahan
Dream River (2013)

(Drag City)

I'm really sorry I missed your birthday, Dad; thanks for the tape.

***

The Avett Brothers
Magpie and the Dandelion (2013)

(Columbia)

Hey, a step in the right direction at least -- but if a resurgence of the once-confessional, once-deeply insightful songs has at least stunted the artificial pandering, the vocals are still getting steadily worse (and entirely shirking the eccentricity of country music is hardly the best answer to its limits).

***

Cults
Static (2013)

(Columbia)

Breakups make us all bland, blind and childish, moping in the bed all afternoon and forgetting to turn off the Television like we're Stuart Price or summat.

***

Curren$y
New Jet City (2013)

(s/r)

Slight Variations on a Theme XVIII -- he's the ultimate troll in his modest way, and good for him.

***

Eels
Wonderful, Glorious (2013)

(Vagrant)

RECOMMENDED - Slipped under the radar, but this is E's best work in nearly a decade -- classic rock crunch and vocal grit and all, he's nearly his old self again only fat & happy, but of course that could be a deal-breaker (also, too many uncertain ballads).

***

Pink Martini
Get Happy (2013)

(Heinz)

!! CAUTION !! - You can get so caught up in the aesthetics of your own obsessive nostalgia that you forget what brought you to it in the first place... or you can listen to this inoffensive dross.

***

Chvrches
The Bones of What You Believe (2013)

(Glassnote)

RECOMMENDED - Actually, I quite like this sprightly and sly electro-pop, but it's the end of the year, I'm worn down and stressed out, and (not for the first time) I can't think of a goddamned thing to say about it. :'(

***

Three more full reviews. Maybe tonight? I don't know. This is hard work.

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