Roxy Music-For Your Pleasure (1973)

My Rating: 81% (B+)

Pitchfork Rating: N/A

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 81% (B+)

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Do The Strand
  2. Beauty Queen
  3. Strictly Confidential
  4. Editions Of You
  5. In Every Dream Home A Heartache
  6. The Bogus Man
  7. Grey Lagoons
  8. For Your Pleasure

Label:

Island, Polydor, Warner Bros., Atco, Reprise

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Want a fun album while winding down for the night.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Trippy, I like it.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

For sure!

Final Thoughts:

I know next to nothing about Roxy Music, I only discovered them on my quest to broaden my musical taste by listening through the 1001 albums to listen to before you die. For Your Pleasure was surprisingly fun, if not a little misguided at times, for instance the song Do The Strand got old fast. But when Roxy Music is on their game, which is most of For Your Pleasure, it’s really diverse and consistently engaging. Their song Grey Lagoons would more than likely make it on my list for best songs from the 70’s (not that I’m too well versed in that decade), it sounds like a mix between Supertamp and The Seatbelts, I’m excited to keep explore other albums by these guys.

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FIDLAR-Too (2015)

My Rating: 88% (A-)

Pitchfork Rating: 58%

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: 76%

Average Rating: 74% (B-)

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. 40oz. On Repeat
  2. Punks
  3. West Coast
  4. Why Generation
  5. Sober
  6. Leave Me Alone
  7. Drone
  8. Overdose
  9. Hey Johnny
  10. Stupid Decisions
  11. Bad Medicine
  12. Bad Habits

Label:

Mom + Pop Music, Wichita Recordings, Dine Alone Records

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Having a hard time connection with your generation.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Pretty ugly, but fits their style.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Yeah.

Final Thoughts:

FIDLAR’s self titled album was friggin’ amazing. Here’s this new band singing about Cheap Beer and Cocaine and then they release a music video with Nick Offerman peeing on everything (fake penis and all). It was raw, weird, and it made you feel like you were on this trip with a bunch of crazy stoners. Then Too came out, and it was significantly watered down. If FIDLAR (album) was a bad trip, Too is a hissy fit, the lyricism takes a noticeable dive, but damn if it’s not still catchy as ever. FIDLAR’s Too wasn’t necessarily a misstep, but it went a little too accessible. I think this band will have a hard time finding itself upon its next release, do they want to be raw and unpredictable (please, please please) or do they want to be a band for high schoolers who are finding themselves? Only time will tell.

Redcloud-Hawthorne’s Most Wanted (2007)

My Rating: 100% (A++)

Pitchfork Rating: N/A

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 100% (A++)

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Deep Thoughts
  2. Welcome All
  3. Guns & Roses (feat. Jayo Felony, Eek-A-Mouse, & Tonex)
  4. Boulevard Knights
  5. 405 (feat. Lord Zen & Dannu of Visionaries)
  6. Tapatio (feat. Pigeon John)
  7. Hawthorne’s Most Wanted (feat. Kurupt of Tha Dogg Pound)
  8. The Boombox Saints
  9. Krylon Teardrops
  10. The Time Has Come
  11. Battle Of Little Bighorn (feat. Def Shepard)
  12. My People
  13. Songs They Sang
  14. Death Of A Salesman (feat. Pigeon John)
  15. South Central Farms

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Wanting a really funky hip hop album.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

It’s what got me to buy it, super cool.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

So badly.

Final Thoughts:

There are few albums that I can remember the first time that I listened to, but Hawthorne’s Most Wanted was so jaw droppingly original that I remember first hearing DJ Wise’s crazy intro and getting excited for the rest of the album. Redcloud has made one of the funkiest hip hop albums I’ve ever heard, there are no weak tracks on this project, all the pieces fit together so well. But it’s not just the awesome sampling that makes Hawthorne’s Most Wanted classic, Redcloud’s vocals and lyrics are original, funny, and honest. One of my favourite lines (from Songs They Sang) is: “God’s a blanket I’m Linus, it’s 10 degrees below minus.” Clever writing, awesome DJing, Hawthorne’s Most Wanted is one of my favourite hip hop albums of all time.

Radiohead-OK Computer (1997)

My Rating: 92% (A-)

Pitchfork Rating: 100%

Rolling Stone Rating: 100%

Metacritic Rating: 100%

Average Rating: 98%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Airbag
  2. Climbing Up the Walls
  3. Electioneering
  4. Exit Music (For a Film)
  5. Fitter Happier
  6. Karma Police
  7. Let Down
  8. Lucky
  9. No Surprises
  10. Paranoid Android
  11. Subterranean Homesick Alien
  12. The Tourist

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Going through a breakup and/or existential breakdown.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

I really like this album cover, it reminds me of Saskatchewan and the SSX video games.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

One day for sure.

Final Thoughts:

I’m sure I’ve already proved myself irrelevant by not giving this album a perfect score and putting it as one of my favourites, especially when Pitchfork, Rolling Stone, and Metacritic all gave it a perfect score. When it comes to innovation and importance, I have no doubt that OK Computer is essential. When it comes to this being a great album, well 92% is still a damn good rating so everyone calm their shit. OK Computer is emotional, epic, and groundbreaking. The album flows from song to song with expert care. The experience is truly one of a kind and I think that any music lover would be incomplete without at least listening through this album once.

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.

Run The Jewels-Run The Jewels (2013)

My Rating: 95% (A+)

Pitchfork Rating: 85%

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 90%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Run The Jewels
  2. Banana Clipper (Feat. Big Boi)
  3. 36 Chain
  4. Ddfn
  5. Sea Legs
  6. Job Well Done (Feat. Until The Ribbon Breaks)
  7. No Come Down
  8. Get It
  9. Twin Hype Back (Feat. Prince Paul)
  10. A Christmas Fucking Miracle

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Wanting to get into Run The Jewels, start at part one and keep going through the next two albums, the evolution is fun to experience.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Classic, the next two albums follow the same theme, like the consistency.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Love to!

Final Thoughts:

Run The Jewels are doing something in hip hop that happens very rarely, they’re becoming popular practically based on their incredible flows alone. No doubt the production is amazing, beats are tasty, and marketing has been great too, but when it comes down to it Run The Jewels are successful because of the chemistry between El-P and Killer Mike and their ability to twist together incredible 16’s that are damn near impossible to rap along with, even though you may really feel tempted to. Their first album is not their best, but their worst is better than most rappers best efforts. It’s consistently political, hilarious, and jaw dropping. Run The Jewels are changing mainstream hip-hop, and I am so on board with them.

Roots Manuva-Dub Come Save Me (2002)

My Rating: 50% (D)

Pitchfork Rating: N/A

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 50%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Man Fi Cool
  2. Highest Grade Dub
  3. Revolution 5
  4. Styles Dub
  5. Tears
  6. Dreamy Days SFA Dub
  7. The Lynch
  8. Brand New Dub
  9. UK Warriors
  10. Witness Dub

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Addicted to Roots Manuva and ready to dig for the good stuff.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

It’s a really sweet album cover, it’s a play on the Run Come Save Me cover.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

No.

Final Thoughts:

It’s essentially a remixed Run Come Save Me, sort of. The album has a lot of instrumentals and not a whole lot of that Jamaican styled flow that I want to hear. As usual, Roots is at his best when he’s with Chali2na, seriously if these guys made an album together it would make my brain melt. It’s an album I’m glad that I dug into, but I will probably not sit through again. It had a few jammers, but for most it would be a major miss. Don’t start here with Roots, start with Run Come Save Me, you’ll be happy you did.

Randy Newman-Good Old Boys (1974)

My Rating: 88% (A-)

Pitchfork Rating: 93%

Rolling Stone Rating: 100%

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 94%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. Rednecks
  2. Birmingham
  3. Marie
  4. Mr. President (Have Pity On The Working Man)
  5. Guilty
  6. Louisiana 1927
  7. Every Man A King
  8. Kingfish
  9. Naked Man
  10. A Wedding In Cherokee County
  11. Back On My Feet Again
  12. Rollin’
  13. Marie (Demo)

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Feeling a mix of nostalgia and bitterness.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Pretty boring.

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Yeah it’d be wonderful on vinyl.

Final Thoughts:

Randy Newman is the musical voice of Disney, every time I hear his voice I picture the credits of A Bug’s Life or Monsters Inc. But with Good Old Boys we’re treated to the same voice, with a whole different kind of gravitas. It’s still upbeat and fun sounding at times, but a lot of the songs are about adult subjects like drinking, heartbreak, and rolling doobies. It’s truly an odd experience at first hearing this previously pure artists actual music, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. There’s some sweet sweet self-deprecation tracks that fit really well with his sound. He sounds like a mix between Harry Nillson and Frank Sinatra, but that’s just me trying to rationalize him, to most people he’s Randy Newman, the influential artist, to me he’s the dude who rounded the Disney flicks out.

Roots Manuva-Run Come Save Me (2001)

My Rating: 82% (B+)

Pitchfork Rating: 41%

Rolling Stone Rating: N/A

Metacritic Rating: N/A

Average Rating: 62%

Tracklist (Standout songs underlined):

  1. No Strings…
  2. Bashment Boogie
  3. Witness (1 Hope)
  4. Join The Dots
  5. Black Box Interlude
  6. Ital Visions
  7. Kicking The Cack
  8. Dub Styles
  9. Trim Body
  10. Artical
  11. Hol’ It Up
  12. Stone The Crows
  13. Sinny Sin Sins
  14. Evil Rabbit
  15. Swords In The Dirt
  16. Highest Grade
  17. Dreamy Days

Favourite Song on Album:

Listen to This Album When You’re:

Needing a rap album to listen to while walking downtown at night.

Thoughts on Album Cover:

Super original, love it! Fits the sounds so well!

Want to Own on Vinyl?:

Abso-friggin-lutely.

Final Thoughts:

Any Gorillaz fans will recognize the name Roots Manuva, he gave a spectacular performance on their song All Alone on their crown jewel Demon Days. He’s a big deal in the UK, but kinda unheard of up here in Canada. But he should be played a lot more! His sound can go from anything to fun alt hip hop: ex. Join The Dots to introspective sad rap much like the stuff coming out of Seattle (Grieves comes to mind) such as songs like Sinny Sin Sins where he talks about his Pentecostal upbringing. He can also do songs that capture hearts much like Method Man’s You’re All I Need, Roots has Dreamy Days a ballad like love song sure to be relatable to more than a few. Bring it all together with muddy, dark, and often overpowering beats and we get Run Come Save Me, a hip hop album not to be missed.

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