|08-13-2016, 11:34 AM||#1 (permalink)|
Join Date: Aug 2015
Reviewing every single album on my shelf!
Having a whole bunch of albums standing of a bunch of shelves poses a problem: How can i justify buying all that **** if I don't use it? Thus, I've decided that I have to attempt to appreciate every single album I own and post my thoughts on each on as I slowly chew my way through my 400-500 CD's.
A sizeable review for each is simply too much to expect, so it will just be a bunch of thoughts on each album, but no rating. I don't believe in rating systems, as it seems perverse to try and boil a work of art down to a number. What I will do is indicate whether the artist in question is among my favourites and whether the album in question is among my favourites. Those two do not always apply at the same time.
I'll simply write it like this:
Albums will not necessairly be reviewed/commented on alphabetically. AFter all, what are the chances I'll feel like listening to them in the exact order they have on my shelf? Not gonna happen.
Ok, so that's all as far as the introduction goes. Let's move on to the first candidate!
D.A.D. - Simpatico
D.A.D. is one of very few Danish bands I really like, despite being Danish myself. They used to call themselves Disneyland After Dark, but Disney threatened them with a lawsuit and they had to change it. True story, by the way.
I used to listen to this album all the time back around 1998/1999 while I sat up late at night and drew spaceships with pencil on white printer paper. Basically, every song on this album is etched into my brain for good. The album also had a fair few radio hits back in the day, but I don't think they ever really made a splash outside of Denmark.
Simpatico is a pretty eclectic album. There's hints of metal, lounge music, a pinch of banjo, a song backed by violins and songs ranging from soft rock to wild freakouts. The singer, Jesper Binzer, has a very raspy, throaty voice with a strange sort of tone to it. Sometimes his singing feels slightly Axel Rose-ish, but frankly, I think Binzer blows Rose out of the water with ease.
Another strength of the band is the lead guitar playing of his brother, Jacob Binzer, whose solos are some of the most tuneful and tasteful you're likely to encounter in any rock band. Seriously, this guy would be all over every rock guitarist list if only the band had ever attained international fame.
The drummer and the bass player both hold their own, but they're more functional than part of what really makes the band special. The bassist is most notable for wearing feather boas and using outlandish custom bass designs live. He usually has only two strings on these, which gives away just how simple his playing is.
The songwriting on this album is very strong and I feel like every track is very memorable. It's hard to be neutral in my observation when I've heard the album so many god damn times over the years, but it really is very melodic and sing-along friendly. I never saw a party where this album didn't seem to make a party more lively and bright (D.A.D. was always frequently played at private parties, at least as much as Dizzy Mizz Lizzy (another Danish band)).
The whole album is probably easy to find on Youtube and Spotify, but in closing, I'll post some selected tracks in spoiler tags here:
Spoiler for Empty Heads:
Spoiler for Hate to Say I Told You So:
Spoiler for You Do What I've Just Done:
Spoiler for No One Answers:
Last edited by MicShazam; 08-13-2016 at 07:34 PM.
|08-16-2016, 06:08 AM||#2 (permalink)|
Join Date: Aug 2015
D.A.D - Helpyourselfish
Along with Simpatico, this album makes up the clear peak of this bands output. They're still active to this date and has in the vicinity of 15 studio albums to their name. Before Helpyourselfish they struck me as a slightly silly band, though, and after Simpatico they gradually lost their keen sence of memorable hooks. That is all just my opinion of course. Plenty of people still insist that D.A.D remains an impressively vital rock band to this day and their live shows are pretty much universally considered exemplary.
Helpyourselfish fits right in to the zeitgeist of 1995 in rock music. It is dark, grungey, melancholy and borderline metal. What sets this apart from so many other such albums from that time is just how gripping the riffs and vocal lines are. Some seriously strong song writing is at play here, although the self-aware and silly lyrics are an aquired taste:
I'm down on my knees for crying out low
I'm praying to a god that always says no
The light at the end of the tunnel
is nothing but the burglar alarm
Don't take your garbage
- Anywhere but out..
Before the pup in your heart
- Becomes a dog in your mind
And it's licking my brains...
Sucking reason out
It will be cooking my head
With the lid on tight
I'm all right, I'm habituated
So I tip my hand, afraid to play it..
And then my ribs goes twang
- And off they fly..
It wasn't meant for human eyes
... and so on. It is what it is and I like the lyrics. At least they're not boring. Then there's the solos and they're of course great since Jacob Binzer is incapable of playing a solo that isn't at least moderately gripping. The album mostly consists of a bunch of heavy, sometimes lightly bluesy hard rockers with a metal edge. The last few tracks shake things up a bit with a lighter rock song, an almost thrashy song and a melancholic acoustic track respectively. I feel like the first 8 tracks of 12 are the strongest part of the album, but overall I love this disc.
Last edited by MicShazam; 08-16-2016 at 06:16 AM.
|08-31-2016, 09:41 AM||#3 (permalink)|
Join Date: Aug 2015
If I'm going to make any progress at all, then I have to do something more efficient. From here on out, I'll post bite-sized summaries of my thoughts about every album and I'll try to post all albums I own with a single artist in just one post. For certain artists, I might have to cut it in two or more and of course I'm going to get new albums with bands I've already posted, so a band may appear twice or more.
For a bunch of tedious and not-very-amusing reasons I sort of fell out of buying music and listening to new things for a long, long time some years back. 2009 is a fondly remembered year for me, since that's when I started buying CD's again and where I set off on a quest to expand my musical tastes and listen to all sorts of new things. I've found no small amount of amazing things since then and Waltari was one of the first to blow my mind since I first got into music as a teenager in the late 90's.
They're a kind of strange alernative metal/rock/pop/electronica/progressive band that probably qualify as an acquired taste. The singer has a very nasal voice and a finnish accent despite singing in english. Some elements of their music can also be pretty corny, but I personally love how they aren't afraid to mix all sorts of uncool things together - white dude rap and 90's euro pop beats included.
On to the albums!
This compilation contains their first albums Waltari and Monk Punk, a lot of tracks from an early EP and other oddities. Some of the songs are basically simple punk songs. Many tracks have a sort of a playful, comedic feel to them. I'm not too fond of the more silly tracks, but there's some seriously great tracks hidden on these two jam-packed discs. Curiosity might be one of my favourite Waltari songs.
A really great third album. Lots of memorable tracks and a particular atmosphere that I really love. I Held You So Long feels like a true classic that only ever dodged classic status due to the band being pretty obscure.
A sort of disappointing fourth album. Scored them a hit in Germany with the completely terrible title track. Their cover of The Cure's song A Forest is absolutely awesome, so that makes up for it. The rest of the album has its moments, but it isn't great.
I love this this album! Metal meets pop meets funk. The songs span quite a selection of styles, but there's still a cohesive feel to the album. On My Ice might just be my favourite track by this band. The Stage is the song that got me into the band. I think I just randomly bumped into it on Youtube.
This album has a more polished, more metal, more industrial sound than previous albums. The funk rock is pretty much gone. It's got some interesting songs and a very specific feel to it across the entire disc. It might also interest some people to know that the band Apocalyptica add their cellos to the track Purify Yourself. For some reason I never really "felt" this album like I did most of the other albums. It's a good album with some quality performances, and it is no doubt quite original too, but for whatever reason it feels a bit cold and sterile to me.
A pretty awesome (but also rare) compilation of various tracks from the band's first decade. It's worth getting because several tracks on here are previously unreleased. The song Anybody is one such song, and one of my favourites by the band.
This time the band takes a turn for something slightly more poppy than previously. The mastering on this album is a bit smashed, but it's a fun disc for sure. Highlights include Every Bad Day, Power of Thoughts and Back to the Bottom.
Last edited by MicShazam; 08-31-2016 at 09:53 AM.
|08-31-2016, 09:42 AM||#4 (permalink)|
Join Date: Aug 2015
Stylistically, it feels somewhat like the previous album, but the production style is way clearer and sounds more like a normal rock album. There are also fewer electronic and metal elements on this album. Generally, I like this album. It sort of seems like a slightly less successful attempt at doing what the band did with Big Bang, but the songs are mostly good, so of course it's worth getting. One Day is a great song and the genre mashup medley No Limit - Your Funky Rhythm - Symphony Of Destruction is quite entertaining.
This album is parted into two segments. The first half seems to explore a variety of late 90's musical sub-styles, mostly tending towards stuff that feel like modern metal and rock stylings of that time. The second part of the album is a bit more inconsistent and covers a lot of ground, including a Beatles cover and a bit of pretty odd sounding grindcore. Stand out tracks include Helsinki, Digging Inside and Aching Eyes.
Starts off catchy as hell, then it gets really damn weird, then it gets catchy again, and then it closes off with some euro-techno-traditional-folk-singing-something... What's not to like? I want to say that the entire album is my favourite, but if pressed to narrow it down, I'd mention Get Stamped and Wish I could Heal as standout tracks. Let's Puke Together is pretty cool too and has some pretty amusing lyrics.
The 2nd Decade - In the Cradle
A compilation covering the second decade of the bands output. A lot easier to find than the first compilation, but a lot less essential. Most of the tracks here are available on regular studio albums, but we do get a pretty nice acoustic version of the song Dream.
Very modern sounding, some elements of industrial, more leaning towards metal than most of their albums. This album is significantly less all-over-the-place than their other albums in terms of style, but all the songs are very memorable once you get it under your skin despite how it seems sort of one-note at first (for this band's standards, that is). I must have listened to this album a pretty huge number of times!
A somewhat non-great cover album. At least the cover of the Midnight Oil song Dead Heart is quite awesome. The weird and unexpected song choices is the only thing that really makes this cover album special, though.
This album sees the return of almost every previous member of Waltari for a pretty epic collaborative album. It's one of the more metal oriented Waltari albums for sure. The songs have a modern sound, incredibly catchy hooks, riffs and solos and I'm just all round sold on this disc. Like with any Waltari album, there's a few really odd tracks, but I'm loving it despite a questionable inclusion or two. Favourite tracks include Keep it Alive, Not Much to Touch You and Solutions.
Last edited by MicShazam; 08-31-2016 at 09:58 AM.
|09-03-2016, 06:48 AM||#5 (permalink)|
Join Date: Aug 2015
It's my journal, so I guess I'm allowed to bend the theme a bit?
Since I absolutely love a good solo, I thought I'd post a little sampler of some of my favourites, just to shake things up a bit.
To me, a good solo is like a little song of its own. A really good solo has me waiting impatiently throughout the song until it begins.
The purpose of this journal is still the same as I set out to do, but I thought it might be fun to take a break with the occasional list or other things related to the music I'm into.
This short video simply consists of 4 bands with 5 solos that I think are a something specail. The first 4 are guitar solos, the last one is a keyboard solo.
Featured bands are Stam1na, Holy Moses, Dreaming Dead and Waltari.
Last edited by MicShazam; 09-03-2016 at 06:56 AM.
|09-16-2016, 01:19 PM||#6 (permalink)|
Join Date: Aug 2015
I'm going to list every artist I'm into here and then edit this post in the future. This way I can keep track of which artists I've written about and add new ones. Furthermore, it is allowed to leave comments suggesting which artist from the list I should write about next. (Bands I have covered in bold).
Children of Bodom
Dir En Grey
Faith No more
Karyn Crisis' Gospel of the Witches
Kobra and the Lotus
Primal Rock Rebellion
Type O Negative
Beth Gibbons & Rustin Man
Flotsam & Jetsam
Jess and the Ancient Ones
Martin L. Gore
My Silent Wake
System of a Down
Temple of the Absurd