Passion Pit-Tremendous Sea of Love (2017)

My Rating: 55% (D+)

Pitchfork Rating: 75%

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 65% (C)

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Moonbeam
  2. Somewhere Up There
  3. Hey K
  4. You Have The Right
  5. Tremendous Sea of Love
  6. Inner Dialogue
  7. I’m Perfect
  8. The Undertow
  9. To The Otherside
  10. For Sondra (It Means The World To Me)

Label:

Wishart Group Recordings

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Half asleep.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Gorgeous cover.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Not in the least.

Final Thoughts:

Damn, I’m getting fed up with Passion Pit, they can’t make a good album to save their lives. Tremendous Sea of Love is the same story, a few really catchy songs that are the reason I got into them in the first place, buried in absolute unlistenable trash. When these guys sit down to make an album I really wonder if they actually think it out or if they just kind of wing it and hope it will work together. Passion Pit has pushed me a little far, I keep getting their new album hoping that this time it will be different, but it never is. I need those few rad tracks, but c’mon work on your albums.

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Parquet Courts-Human Performance (2016)

My Rating: 88% (A-)

Pitchfork Rating: 84%

Rolling Stone Rating: 80%

Metacritic Rating: 82%

Average Rating: 84% (B++)

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Berlin Got Blurry
  2. Captive of the Sun
  3. Dust
  4. Human Performance
  5. I Was Just Here
  6. It’s Gonna Happen
  7. Keep It Even
  8. One Man No City
  9. Outside
  10. Paraphrased
  11. Pathos Prairie
  12. Steady On My Mind
  13. Two Dead Cops

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Having a hard time waking up.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Super cool, I’m a big fan.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

So badly yes!

Final Thoughts:

Parquet Courts took awhile to grow on me, but Human Performance was really approachable. I figured them out and that makes it so much easier to listen to them. So here’s the answer so you don’t have to do the work yourself, Parquet Courts are Talking Heads meet Sonic Youth. It’s impossible not to hear a Byrne influence with the vocals and lyrical content, and the sedated instrumentation is very SY. Human Performance is the album I’d recommend to get to know these guys, laid back, funny, and just a real chill album to put on while playing Monopoly or drinking a beer with friends.

Pink Floyd-The Division Bell (1994)

My Rating: 77% (B)

Pitchfork Rating: N/A

Rolling Stone Rating: 50%

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 64% (C)

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Cluster One
  2. What Do You Want From Me
  3. Poles Apart
  4. Marooned
  5. A Great Day For Freedom
  6. Wearing The Inside Out
  7. Take It Back
  8. Coming Back To Life
  9. Keep Talking
  10. Lost For Words
  11. High Hopes

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

About to go to sleep.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

One of the classics, I’ve seen this cover everywhere.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Yep!

Final Thoughts:

The big argument against The Division Bell is that it doesn’t sound like Pink Floyd, and I could understand the frustration with that, but in all honesty I still don’t know what Pink Floyd sounds like. I’ve listened to a handful of tracks of theirs since high school (Money, Goodbye Blue Sky, Another Brick In the Wall) but besides that I’ve never been too familiar, so when putting on The Division Bell my bias was fairly low, I had little to compare it to so it was a fresh album. I liked what I heard for the most part, laid back, jazzy, epic large vocals, it’s not an amazing album, but it’s a solid one, and I’d be happy to have it in my collection.

P.O.S.-Chill, Dummy (2017)

My Rating: 88% (A-)

Pitchfork Rating: 74%

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: 83%

Average Rating: 82%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Born A Snake
  2. Bully
  3. Faded
  4. Get Ate
  5. Gravedigger
  6. Infinite Scroll
  7. Lanes
  8. Pieces-Ruins
  9. Roddy Piper
  10. Sleepdrone-Superposition
  11. Thieves-Kings
  12. Wearing A Bear

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Feeling like a funky bad ass.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

It’s incredible I love it!

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Yes!!!

Final Thoughts:

P.O.S. continues to impress me, every album of his I dig into I’m reminded of how original and underrated he truly is. Chill, Dummy is an album that made me proud to have been with this guy for awhile, he’s growing as an artist and it’s awesome to see his growth with this album. He mixes in a little bit of his hard-core side on this album, where even the opener Born A Snake makes you wonder if you invested in an early Rage Against The Machine release. P.O.S. is an artist who will be respected in time, with all of the music coming out it’s easy to miss this release, but I think given a few years this will be as well respected as Aesop Rock’s The Impossible Kid.

P.O.S.-We Don’t Even Live Here (2012)

My Rating: 82% (B+)

Pitchfork Rating: 57%

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: 76%

Average Rating: 72%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Bumper
  2. Fuck Your Stuff
  3. How We Land (ft. Justin Vernon of Bon Iver)
  4. Wanted/Wasted (ft. Astronautalis)
  5. They Can’t Come (ft. Sims)
  6. Lock-Picks, Knives, Bricks & Bats
  7. Fire In The Hole/Arrow To The Action
  8. Get Down (ft. Mitclan)
  9. All Of It
  10. Weird Friends (We Don’t Even Live Here)
  11. Piano Hits (ft. Isaac Gale of Marijuana Deathsquads)

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Skateboarding at night.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Simple is always good.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

I own it, it’s one of the coolest looking vinyl I own.

Final Thoughts:

I bought a ticket to go see P.O.S. live when he visited Vancouver, but alas, I had one of the worst toothaches of my life, honestly it was just the worst, so I missed it. But I decided in return I’d dig through some of his albums and I’m stoked on what I’m discovering, or in this case rediscovering. I first heard P.O.S. through False Hopes by Doomtree, I later sunk my teeth into We Don’t Even Live Here and Never Better, finding We Don’t Even Live Here the better of the two. We Don’t Even Live Here is a really diverse album with a Bon Iver feature , lots of aggressive drumbeats, and lyrics that you want to study. P.O.S. is a very talented emcee, not one to make you laugh, but make you think, and any thought provoking emcee is a commodity nowadays.

Playdough-Hotdoggin (2011)

My Rating: 87% (A-)

Pitchfork Rating: N/A

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 87%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Nunya
  2. Rhymer Reason
  3. No Angel
  4. Elizabeth Shue
  5. The Business
  6. Say Sumn
  7. My Cadillac
  8. Franks & Beans feat. Gift Of Gab
  9. 1 Day
  10. Singleminded Female
  11. So What feat. Freddie Bruno
  12. I Got It Like
  13. Ya Heard feat. Mr. Dibbs vs The Black Keys
  14. Follow It
  15. Sunset

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Looking for some clean(ish) hip hop to be funky with.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Hilarious.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Yeah, I doubt it even exists though.

Final Thoughts:

The hardest part of Christian Hip-Hop is being able to be authentic, at least that’s what I see the struggle being. With strict rules to stick to through Christian labels, it’s near impossible to get in one word that may make someone somewhere wince. The freedom, then, with underground Christian hip-hop is what makes the underground scene much more attractive. When Emcees like Playdough put out their own stuff they can have featuring artists like Gift of Gab, a album cover that is very sexual looking at first glance, and an honesty about the life they actually live. Hotdoggin pushes some boundaries, but mostly it shows Playdough’s incredible rhyme scheme while having fun and keeping things weird but authentic.

Pigeon John-Pigeon John Is Dating Your Sister (2003)

My Rating: 100% (A++)

Pitchfork Rating: N/A

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 100%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Highschool Reunion
  2. Life Goes On
  3. Identity Crisis
  4. Deception
  5. Emily
  6. Fox Hills Mallmacks
  7. Originalz
  8. Crazy
  9. Hello Everybody
  10. Orange County
  11. Sam the Goat
  12. 2 Step
  13. What Is Love?
  14. The Art of Falling Off
  15. Alone…

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Looking for a goofy hip hop album that still can be sad at times.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Hilarious, I love it!

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Yeah don’t know if it exists but if it does I want it.

Final Thoughts:

Before I discovered the whole genre of joke rap (Heath McNease and Lil Dicky come to mind), Before I discovered the Good Life Cafe (Jurassic 5, Abstract Rude, Freestyle Fellowship), I found Pigeon John. I heard his song Hello Everybody on a Hip Hope compilation and really loved it. I ordered this album and listened to it repeatedly on my CD walkman walking down my High School’s hallways feeling like the pimpiest nerd in the whole town. Pigeon John Is Dating Your Sister is extremely fun (Highschool Reunion), catchy (Hello Everybody), easily accessible (Identity Crises), and heartbreaking (Emily), it’s a really diverse well rounded album that every hip hop head should indulge in.

People Under The Stairs-Fun DMC (2008)

My Rating: 100% (A++)

Pitchfork Rating: 76%

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 88%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Swan Fever
  2. Step Bacc
  3. Up Yo Spine (Fishbucket Pt. 3)
  4. The Fun
  5. The Grind
  6. Anotha’ (BBQ)
  7. The Ultimate 144
  8. Letter 2 c/o The Bronx
  9. Party Enemy No. 1
  10. Enjoy
  11. Gamin’ on Ya
  12. Critical Condition
  13. The Wiz
  14. People Riddum (Feat. Odell)
  15. California (Feat. Blvme)
  16. Love’s Theme
  17. A Baby
  18. Same Beat (The Wesley Rap)
  19. D
  20. The Mike & Chris Story

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Ready to party or just vibe out to some laid back hip-hop.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Pretty funny, definitely on the better side of their album covers.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Ugh if only I could find it, but yes I want it very badly.

Final Thoughts:

If it’s not obvious that I’m a big fan of People Under The Stairs I don’t know when it will ever be, perhaps when I review all of their albums? Fun DMC is my favourite album of theirs so far, it’s just so much…fun. The title really gets to the heart of the mentality of the group, old school fun hip-hop. It’s like Jurassic 5, but with two emcees who love their craft and focus on their beats to a worrisome level. The lyrics are goofy, the flows are in the pocket, there is little else I need from a hip-hop album than what Fun DMC delivers. Now start re-releasing some vinyl so I can listen to it forever and ever.

People Under The Stairs-…Or Stay Tuned (2003)

My Rating: 86% (B++)

Pitchfork Rating: N/A

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 86%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Yield
  2. Plunken’ Em
  3. Roadbeaters
  4. Fly Love Song
  5. Drumbox
  6. OST Remix
  7. Yo
  8. LA Song (Sensitive Mix)
  9. SF Knights Remix
  10. Take The Fruit
  11. Outrun

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Looking to chill while cooking.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Not their best, but not their worst either. Doesn’t have much of an impact on me at all.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

So badly but these guys are hard to find.

Final Thoughts:

In a righteous world People Under The Stairs are considered as important to the hip-hop scene as Run The Jewels, but we don’t live in a righteous world, so mumble rap is a thing. Double K and Thes One have incredible chemistry, their rhyme schemes match up impeccably over the incredibly chill beats they make in some basement somewhere. …Or Stay Tuned is another fantastic album in an already impressive discography, these two know their craft, their audience, and their flow will never get old to me. People Under The Stairs should be on the radio, they should be referenced by other hip hop heads, but part of their charisma is knowing that they are making music for a small group of fans, and somehow you found yourself to be one of them.

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