Wednesday, May 6, 2009

One Of These Things Is Not Like the Others...

Noble Beast
Andrew Bird
Andrew Bird and The Shins have a lot in common: The music is beautiful and polished, the melodies are inventive, the structures and orchestrations are detailed and clever, the lyrics use big words to say absolutely nothing, and I can't listen to more than three or four songs before my ears get bored. At the same time, it's too technically good to be bad.
Grade: B

Invaders Must Die
The Prodigy
Right from the moment the digitized voice says "We are The Prodigy," two things become abundantly clear: This album is going to be great, mindless fun, and it is going to be compressed as all hell. Dynamic range? No. Not for Liam Howlet. Not since... well, not since ever, really. Oddly enough, for a Prodigy album, it takes time to work its magic.
Grade: B+

Hold Time
M. Ward
You know, without the first track, this album isn't half bad. The first song, "For Beginners," turned me off in ways I can't describe. Twee and awful. Acoustic in that way as if to say, "Hey, look, I'm acoustic!" I hate that. What follows is better than that, though I never managed to shake the feeling that I was listening to little more than good background music.
Grade: B-

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