The Cramps-Songs The Lord Taught Us (1980)

My Rating: 59% (D+)

Pitchfork Rating: N/A

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 59% (D+)

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. TV Set
  2. Rock On The Moon
  3. Garbageman
  4. I Was A Teenage Werewolf
  5. Sunglasses After Dark
  6. The Mad Daddy
  7. Mystery Plane
  8. Zombie Dance
  9. What’s Behind The Mask
  10. Strychnine
  11. I’m Cramped
  12. Tear It Up
  13. Fever
  14. I Was A Teenage Werewolf (With False Start)
  15. Mystery Plane
  16. Twist & Shout
  17. I’m Cramped
  18. The Mad Daddy

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Needing some 80’s in your life.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Hilarious I like it.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Not this one.

Final Thoughts:

The Cramps are on a list of 1001 Albums to Listen to Before You Die, and honestly their album Songs The Lord Taught Us didn’t do a lot for me. I understand that there might be some influential merit here, but to me it just sounded like a mix between Elvis and Aerosmith and those have never been guys I’m that into. I personally gravitate towards The Clash when it comes to my old school rock, so hearing these guys just sounded watered down or weak. Ultimately The Cramps didn’t do a lot for me, I wouldn’t have included them on the 1001 list but that’s just from preference and not education.

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Sean Anonymous & Dimitry Killstorm-Better Days (2015)

My Rating: 58% (D+)

Pitchfork Rating: N/A

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 58% (D+)

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Better Days
  2. 54 Bison
  3. They Be Like (Featuring Metasota)
  4. Big Bang (Featuring P.O.S & Lizzo)
  5. Invisible Ink
  6. What Is Your Name (Featuring Haphduzn & Del The Funky Homosapien)
  7. Pack Your Bags
  8. Begin, Begun
  9. Ring The Bell (Featuring Haphduzn, Phillip Morris, Aceyalone & Wordsworth)
  10. Like I Do
  11. Chapters
  12. Je T’aime
  13. Timeless

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Diggin’ for some underground hip hop.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Love the album cover, really unique.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Not really.

Final Thoughts:

I’m realizing with age how much confidence makes a difference in a lot of aspects of your life, and that’s the main problem with Better Days, the artists don’t seem completely confident yet. Not to say they’re bad, but they need some time to feel more comfortable behind the mic. No matter the featuring artist (Del, P.O.S., Aceyalone) the whole thing just is a little off. I can see Sean Anonymous gaining traction with a little more authority in his voice behind the mic, but this feels a little rough yet.

Weezer-The Red Album (2008)

My Rating: 57% (D+)

Pitchfork Rating: 47%

Rolling Stone Rating: 60%

Metacritic Rating: 64%

Average Rating: 57%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Toublemaker
  2. The Greatest Man That Ever Lived
  3. Pork And Beans
  4. Heart Songs
  5. Everybody Get Dangerous
  6. Dreamin’
  7. Thought I Knew
  8. Cold Dark World
  9. Automatic
  10. The Angel And The One
  11. Miss Sweeney
  12. Pig
  13. The Spider
  14. King

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

I don’t know feeling immature and self abusive.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Pretty friggin’ awful.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

No…

Final Thoughts:

Weezer is notorious for being one of those bands that had a few great albums and then just pretty much flopping the rest of their career. They’ve been picked on enough so I won’t be cruel because at the end of the day I do like this band. But damn this album is just so incredibly bad. It’s as if they went to a frat house and just wrote lyrics with that audience in mind. It’s eye-rollingly corny, immature, and sometimes just plain stupid. Even a few of their slow songs really crap the bed, too. Miss Sweeney may be my all time most hated Weezer song ever created, like honestly what is that song? It’s fun for high school but does not age well at all.

People Under The Stairs-The Next Step (1998)

My Rating: 53% (D+)

Pitchfork Rating: N/A

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 53%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Intro / 4 Everybody
  2. Death Of A Salesman
  3. Hardcore (Feat. Smile-Oak)
  4. Wannabes
  5. Ten Tough Guys
  6. Mid-City Fiesta
  7. Slow Bullet
  8. San Francisco Knights
  9. The Turndown (Feat. Assault)
  10. Time To Rock Our Shit
  11. The Tamburo 5 (Feat. Naimad, Assault & Shine 5)
  12. Los Angeles Daze
  13. The Next Step II
  14. D.A.R.E.
  15. Asshole (Feat. Assault)
  16. Play It Again / Outro

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Want to dig for a couple great People Under The Stairs tracks.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Classic Hip-Hop cover. It’s rad.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

No, this was a miss.

Final Thoughts:

Let me start with saying I do love People Under The Stairs, I believe that The Dig deserves to be on the list for 100 greatest hip-hop songs of all time, any true hip hop head would include them in such a list. But here’s the thing, The Next Step is more of a jam session than an actual album. There are very few hooks or even tangible themes throughout the tracks, and honestly it’s a really ballsy thing to do. One of the emcees known for having hookless tracks is MF Doom, and, well with all due respect, to quote Zorak “you’re no doom.” It’s an album that wants to be a De La Soul or Tribe Called Quest release, but isn’t as calculated as those groups tend to be.

Bloc Party-Hymns (2016)

My Rating: 63% (C)

Pitchfork Rating: 50%

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: 55%

Average Rating: 56%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. The Love Within
  2. Only He Can Heal Me
  3. So Real
  4. The Good News
  5. Fortress
  6. Different Drugs
  7. Into The Earth
  8. My True Name
  9. Virtue
  10. Exes
  11. Living Lux
  12. Eden
  13. Paraнso
  14. New Blood
  15. Evening Song

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Needing a chill UK album.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Not doing a whole lot for me.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Nope.

Final Thoughts:

Bloc Party has been one of those bands that makes great songs, but not amazing albums. Hymns is just the next evolution of the band falling from grace more and more. It’s just a boring album, there’s really not a whole lot happening, I can’t imagine the band being all that proud of this contribution, it’s just a big bland mess of sound that offers a couple semi-catchy tunes, but is more disappointing than anything.

M83-Junk (2016)

My Rating: 57% (D+)

Pitchfork Rating: 68%

Rolling Stone Rating: 40%

Metacritic Rating: 66%

Average Rating: 57.8%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Do It, Try It
  2. Go!
  3. Walkway Blues
  4. Bibi The Dog Feat. Mai Lan
  5. Moon Crystal
  6. For The Kids Feat. Susanne Sundfør
  7. Solitude
  8. The Wizard
  9. Laser Gun
  10. Road Blaster
  11. Tension
  12. Atlantique Sud
  13. Time Wind
  14. Ludivine
  15. Sunday Night 1987

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

When you want an uneven synthpop album.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Love it! It’s a great cover that’s just as weird as this band.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Nah.

Final Thoughts:

Here’s the thing with Junk when the tracks hit, they hit hard. There are some truly amazing songs on this album. But as with most electronic albums I’ve come across there is a lot of filler short tracks that weigh it down. Ugh if only they’d cut this album in half and add more like the good songs on the album then we’d have something to talk about.

Pigeon John-Good Sinner (2016)

My Rating: 58% (D+)

Pitchfork Rating: N/A

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 58%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Good Sinner
  2. Knock Out
  3. Rebel Rebel
  4. That’s What I Like
  5. Stick Up
  6. The Tops
  7. (You Gotta) Fight For Your Right (To Party)
  8. All Eyes On Me
  9. Gravity
  10. She’s Loud
  11. Shake It Down
  12. Take Off

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You:

Want a no brainer pop album to not pay attention to.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

It’s pretty sharp, I think it’s a really cool looking picture that makes me really want to get into this album.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Not in the slightest.

Final Thoughts:

Selling out. to me, is when you leave your fanbase to try to make music that’s popular at the time. That’s exactly what’s wrong with Good Sinner, this isn’t the Pigeon John I know and love. This is a Pigeon John that has been shaped by what is popular. The music is catchy for the moment then instantly forgotten. The lyrics are meaningless and radio friendly. I get that you have to make money as an artist, but it’s sad to see one of my favourites (the creator of great tunes like As We Know It and Rock Bottom Again) churn out an album as poor as this. The Identity Crisis continues, please go back to Dragon Slayer and/or Pigeon John Is Dating Your Sister.

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