Said The Whale-As Long As Your Eyes Are Wide (2017)

My Rating: 45% (D-)

Pitchfork Rating: N/A

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 45%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Step into the Darkness
  2. More Than Ever
  3. Heaven
  4. I Will Follow You
  5. Realize Real Eyes
  6. Confidence
  7. Miscarriage
  8. Beautiful Morning
  9. Emily Rose
  10. Lilac and Willow

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Just need to add a couple more Said The Whale songs to your playlist.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Probably the best part of this album.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Not in the least.

Final Thoughts:

Said The Whale has always been a good pick-me-up band for me, singing about Vancouver and Canadian lifestyle in general is an easy way to my heart, but they strayed too far from their core sound on As Long As Your Eyes Are Wide and the result is this disastrous album. First off every song sounds the damn same. Secondly it’s desperately trying to get radio-play, it’s typical mall music without the catchiness of mall music. And the biggest offender is the repetitiveness of the whole thing, good lord sit down and write some lyrics out. As Long As Your Eyes Are Wide is the worst Said The Whale album I’ve heard, I usually like these guys but this was just so miscalculated.

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Rock Plaza Central-Cover Me In Brule (2012)

My Rating: 75% (B-)

Pitchfork Rating: N/A

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 75%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Srexy Brack
  2. Ain’t No Grave (boom boom boom version)
  3. I Wrant You
  4. Monkey and Gecko
  5. Cow and Bird
  6. Pranama
  7. You Don’t Need
  8. Ain’t No Grave (movie version)
  9. Record Brody Crount
  10. Excellent Steel Horse (pseudo-acaprella)

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

I don’t know, high I guess.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

It’s pretty ugly, but I get that it’s supposed to be a Tim and Eric reference.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Sure it’d be funny to own on vinyl.

Final Thoughts:

What kind of psychedelic nightmare trip did I enter when I found this mish mash of an album? Seriously, Rock Plaza Central+Steve Brule+Justin Timberlake Covers=wtf? The whole album is hard to take seriously, I don’t think it is meant to be. It’s a lot of fun though, and certain songs even have the strength to strike a sad chord (I Wrant You), and the seriousness of the instrumentals are still there. I’m not in on the joke though, and for that it’s hard to understand what really is going on on Cover Me In Brule, but regardless we’re still looking at some solid tunes in a weirdly packed concept album.

Mac Demarco-2 (2012)

My Rating: 91% (A)

Pitchfork Rating: 82%

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: 81%

Average Rating: 85%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Cooking Up Something Good
  2. Dreamin
  3. Freaking Out the Neighborhood
  4. Annie
  5. Ode to Viceroy
  6. Robson Girl
  7. The Stars Keep On Calling My Name
  8. My Kind of Woman
  9. Boe Zaah
  10. Sherrill
  11. Still Together

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Ready for a more under-polished Mac Demarco album, but still love his vibe as much as I do.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

It’s funny, but not doing a whole lot for me.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Oh for sure.

Final Thoughts:

Mac Demarco has turned into one of those artists who I’ll pretty much love anything they release, his style is unique, chill, and groovy. He has this unique way of being kind of sad while still being uplifting. 2 is a surprisingly solid album for an earlier release in his career. Not as “clean” sounding as his later albums, but still really catchy, sexy, and so laid back. Demarco knows his audience, he’s found his niche and has slowly crept out of it with his album This Old Dog, which got a lot of radio play, but his heart will always be with the isolated and the weirdos. Somehow he can still cater to a wider audience like my parents, and customers that walk into the bookstore I work at.

Spoon-Telephono (1996)

My Rating: 50% (D)

Pitchfork Rating: 75%

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 63%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Don’t Buy The Realistic
  2. Not Turning Off
  3. All The Negatives Have Been Destroyed
  4. Cvantez
  5. Nefarious
  6. Claws Tracking
  7. Dismember
  8. Idiot Driver
  9. Towner
  10. Wanted To Be Your
  11. Theme To Wendel Stivers
  12. Primary
  13. The Government Darling
  14. Plastic Mylar

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Looking for unedited garage rock.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

It’s pretty meh, doesn’t do a lot for me.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Not in the least.

Final Thoughts:

Spoon has always been an intriguing band to me since I heard their song I Turn My Camera On, I never really checked out their discography, but have decided that I would dig in through this site. Telephono is their first release, and it is a growing pains album, it’s almost unlistenable at moments, and doesn’t reflect their later style that made them catch my attention. The album sounds like a watered down Sex Pistols mixed with a watered down Sonic Youth, if that sounds like something you want to hear than maybe check Telephono out, but if you, like me, like their later radio hits then start at a later album.

The Shins-Oh, Inverted World (2001)

My Rating: 77% (B)

Pitchfork Rating: 80%

Rolling Stone Rating: 70%

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 76%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Caring Is Creepy
  2. One By One All Day
  3. Weird Divide
  4. Know Your Onion!
  5. Girl Inform Me
  6. New Slang
  7. The Celibate Life
  8. Girl On The Wing
  9. Your Algebra
  10. Pressed In A Book
  11. The Past And Pending

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Looking for a really different/unique sounding alt album.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Super unique, I like.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Not this Shin’s release.

Final Thoughts:

The Shins were one of the first alt bands that I got into, I must’ve listened to Caring Is Creepy over 100 times now. This album has a nostalgic hold on me, the artwork will always remind me of my teen years, walking through the high school feeling like nobody understood me (the real me, y’know?) The album itself has a few highlights (New Slang being the other big standout for me) but is kind of boring overall. I don’t know if it was a pioneering album that didn’t age well or if it was just one of those albums I always assumed I loved until I listened from start to finish. At any rate, this is a well regarded album that is not lazy or grating by any sense, just not as wonderful as I remember it being.

Maxïmo Park-Quicken The Heart (2009)

My Rating: 96% (A+)

Pitchfork Rating: 55%

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: 61%

Average Rating: 70%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Wraithlike
  2. The Penultimate Clinch
  3. The Kids Are Sick Again
  4. A Cloud Of Mystery
  5. Calm
  6. In Another World (You Would’ve Found Yourself By Now)
  7. Let’s Get Clinical
  8. Roller Disco Dreams
  9. Tanned
  10. Questing, Not Coasting
  11. Overland, West Of Suez
  12. I Haven’t Seen Her In Ages

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Wanting an album to tune out to.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Pretty not great.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Yeah even though that cover will look stupid.

Final Thoughts:

Maxïmo Park is one of those bands who have found their sound and are content to make albums that kinda all sound the same, for them it works because I like their style and I don’t find it too boring, but I could see why some would be sick of the formula. It sounds like an early 80’s band this time, something like The Smiths or even The Clash at times. Is it groundbreaking? Hell no, it’s really simple, but it’s in its simplicity that it shines. 12 tracks, nothing overly experimental that could rub fans the wrong way, just an album played to plan that I find super easy to mellow out to.

The Raconteurs-Consolers Of The Lonely (2008)

My Rating: 96% (A+)

Pitchfork Rating: 74%

Rolling Stone Rating: 70%

Metacritic Rating: 75%

Average Rating: 79%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Consoler Of The Lonely
  2. Salute Your Solution
  3. You Don’t Understand Me
  4. Old Enough
  5. The Switch And The Spur
  6. Hold Up
  7. Top Yourself
  8. Many Shades Of Black Featuring Adele
  9. Five On The Five
  10. Attention
  11. Pull This Blanket Off
  12. Rich Kid Blues
  13. These Stones Will Shout
  14. Carolina Drama

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Out in the woods.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Creepy and classic, it’s rad.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Oh so friggin’ much.

Final Thoughts:

Controversial statement time: The Raconteurs is the best project Jack White has ever done (White Stripers calm yourselves). Consolers Of The Lonely is an album with so much going on for it: garage rock, ballad, hip hop like vocals, it’s a blender of genres and styles coming together to make one delicious listen. I love love love this album and I wish more people were into it because it’s so damn good. Jack White is complimented nicely by the backup band while still being able to showcase his amazing vocals. The lyrics are really solid and fable like at times. This album deserves your attention and Jack White fans should be ashamed if this isn’t in their library.

Eels-End Times (2010)

My Rating: 86% (B++)

Pitchfork Rating: 39%

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: 71%

Average Rating: 65%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. The Beginning
  2. Gone Man
  3. Mansions Of Los Feliz
  4. In My Younger Days
  5. A Line In The Dirt
  6. End Times
  7. Apple Trees
  8. Paradise Blues
  9. Nowadays
  10. Unhinged
  11. High And Lonesome
  12. I Need A Mother
  13. Little Bird
  14. On My Feet

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Sad and/or lonely.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

It must be from a graphic novelist that I know but I’m too lazy to look it up, it’s aces though.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Yeah it’d be beautiful on vinyl.

Final Thoughts:

Okay, I’m a little pissy at Pitchfork at this moment so let me get that out of the way, we sometimes really disagree with each other, but never has it been so apparent than this album, 3.9? 3.9? Are you high? You can not like the lyrics, but I mean it’s still well made music. 3.9 should be reserved for something extra bad, not a routine album from a reliable artist. Anywhozits. End Times is a really chill album from Eels, it’s a great album to listen to before bed or while winding down. I’ve always enjoyed the way Eels can get at the heart of loneliness and I think this is one of the most lonely sounding albums he’s made yet. There are a few up-beat tracks that I think a wide audience can enjoy (Gone Man, Paradise Blues), but they’ll always be at their best at the really mellow tunes (Line in the Dirt, On My Feet, I Need A Mother).

Broken Social Scene-You Forgot It In People (2002)

Record Review Recommended By: Richard Sandlin

My Rating: 62% (C-)

Pitchfork Rating: 92%

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: 86%

Average Rating: 80%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Capture The Flag
  2. KC Accidental
  3. Stars And Sons
  4. Almost Crimes
  5. Looks Just Like The Sun
  6. Pacific Theme
  7. Anthems For A Seventeen-Year-Old Girl
  8. Cause = Time
  9. Late Night Bedroom Rock For The Missionaries
  10. Shampoo Suicide
  11. Lover’s Spit
  12. I’m Still Your Fag
  13. Pitter Patter Goes My Heart

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Tired and kinda sad.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Meh, doesn’t do a whole lot of anything for me.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

No.

Final Thoughts:

Broken Social Scene is one of those bands that has a huge following, and they consist of dedicated fans who would take a face full of Lovers Spit in defense of them. The problem is they should be better. I mean you have Stars, Metric, and Feist in one band, of course my expectations are going to be high, but it doesn’t quite sound experimental enough, nor does it truly find its voice. The album was altogether a let down for me, there a few really solid tracks, but it doesn’t make up for the pure amount of filler or the fact that it just seems totally misguided. I’m not saying I dislike this band, I’m saying I expected more.

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