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Friday, December 9, 2011

Metallica and Lou Reed: Lulu

I consider myself a fairly big Metallica fan, so when this album got released under my nose, I was shocked. Really, Death Magnetic was hyped before its release, with songs being revealed, leaked, and faked with frequency over YouTube. It was a full two months after its release that I even knew of this album's existence, although I wish I had stayed in the dark. Why do I wish this? Because, simply, this may very well be the worst album ever released. Seriously, Limp Bizkit can barely compete with this!
For starters, whoever decided that Lou Reed and Metallica just had to do a collaboration needs to be dragged out behind a barn and shot. The idea is so ridiculous, that it makes Snoop Dogg's collaboration with Buzz Aldrin seem normal. Okay, maybe not, but still, it's strange. What do Lou Reed and Metallica have in common? Nothing at all, that's what!
As for the songs on this album- they are of the worst kind. Long, overdrawn, poorly produced, pretentious and sloppy. The instrumentals are uninspired, although not downright terrible, the vocals are boring and unfitting at all to the music, and the lyrics are just plain STUPID! As a testament to the album's poor production value, Lou's vocals sound like they were recorded before the song was even played, separately. It sounds like Lou is just kind of doing his thing, barely maintaining a connection with the melody, sometimes just going off completely. Lou's voice also sounds terrible, and you really have to wonder WHO exactly thought it was a good idea for him to sing on a metal track. Half of the time it sounds like he's just talking into the microphone. It's horrible.
However boring the instrumentals may be, however horrible Lou Reed's voice is, all pale in comparison to the lyrics on this album. My God. When I first listened to one of these songs on Youtube, I thought it was a joke, honestly. With insightful lyrics such as 'I'll swallow your sharpest cutter, like a colored man's dick.' , 'if I waggle my ass like a dark prostitute, would you think less of me?' and James Hetfield yelling about how he is a table (I have no idea, I really don't), this album didn't have a prayer from the get go. Even if the instrumentals were of Master of Puppets quality, and we had 80s Hetfield singing, this album would still be a giant waste of time. These lyrics attempt to hoodwink you into thinking that Lou Reed actually has something to talk about, throwing in obscure metaphors and ridiculous bars. The lyrics on this are so damn pretentious, but have little actually meaning. Wait, I said little? Scratch that, no meaning. I swear, the word 'dick' is used more on this album than on most rap albums. The lyrics are good for a laugh if you're in a bad mood, but the really bad thing is that Lou Reed is completely serious. He honestly thinks what he's talking about has meaning, and it's sad. 'I would cut my legs and tits, when I think of Boris karloff and Kinski.' What? Seriously, a five year old could make better music than this, and probably have, on multiple occasions.
My recommendation for this album is to listen to it on Youtube, and laugh for the people who actually spent money on this. When I heard another Metallica album was out, after Death Magnetic's step in the right direction, I was pretty excited for their next album. Technically, this isn't a studio album, but a collab. Either way, it's pure horrible. On a side note, Lou Reed wants a Lulu 2- that is scary.

(1 out of 10)

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Jimi Hendrix: Valleys of Neptune

Valleys of Neptune
is the latest posthumous release by the legendary Jimi Hendrix. After years of recycled Hendrix music appearing on posthumous albums, everybody was skeptical of this album. The album promised nearly sixty minutes of unreleased Hendrix music. The album sort of delivers on this promise. Some of the songs have been available in some form, either official releases or bootleg CDs. However, even hardcore collectors and bootlegers will find a lot of new material on this album, and the ones that have been heard before are polished. There are some familiar songs on here, such as Fire, Sunshine of Your Love, and Red House. However, these versions are new. Nearly all of the tracks have been heard before. There are two rare tracks on the album, never having surfaced even on a bootleg. These are Ships Passing Through The Night and Crying Blue Rain. There really isn't too much more to say about this album. If you're a serious collector of Hendrix, then this is a good purchase. If you're more of a casual fan, then this really isn't for you. The songs aren't perfect, and some go on way too long, like Sunshine of Your Love or just feel like a jam (Crying Blue Rain.) While this album is better than previous releases in the sense that the songs feel complete, and not just bad quality Demos.
Overall, this is a good album, but not essential in Hendrix's extensive catalog.


(7 out of 10)

Friday, May 20, 2011

Quick Reviews 5-10

1. Magical Mystery Tour (The Beatles)

(8 out of 10)

2.All Things Must Pass (George Harrison)

(9 out of 10)

3. Surfin' Usa (The Beach Boys)


(7 out of 10)

4. Dookie (Green Day)

(8 out of 10)

5. The Pick of Destiny (Tenacious D)

(6 out of 10)

Thursday, May 19, 2011

The Beatles: Please Please Me

Every band has to start somewhere, don't they? Listening to Abbey Road and Please Please Me are like listening to albums from two completely different bands. One is a pure britpop album, with catchy lyrics, upbeat tempos, and high strung vocals. The other is a mature rock album, with serious themes, slowed down tempos, and even a song featuring Capella singing. That's not to say Please Please Me is bad, it's just not as impressive as their later work. The album is influential, and, as stated by rolling stone magazine, it invented the idea of the self contained rock band, who played their own instruments and sung their own songs, since only six of the fourteen songs on the album are covers. The cover songs, with the obvious exception of Twist and Shout, don't offer too much. I Saw Her Standing There is an amazing song, and one of the songs that would lead to The Beatles' conquering of the american musical market. Ask Me Why, which is a Beatle original, is one of the group's weaker numbers throughout their career, and a failed attempt at a bossa nova type of song. Please Please Me is a good and catchy number, as is Love Me Do. Do You Want To Know A Secret is the first Beatles' song to feature George Harrison on vocals. It is a pleasant song, but not great. Twist and Shout is a cover song, but it might as well be an original. The way that The Beatles changed this average song into one of the best rock and roll songs ever recorded is just amazing. It remains one of the group's most popular cover songs.
Overall, there are some great songs on this album. Most of the originals are good, but the covers aren't too much. A good start to a band which would eventually become a national phenom, and eventually be widely considered one of the greatest bands ever.

(7 out of 10)