I think this’ll be a regular thing here at Blast-O-Rama, just a quick handful of thoughts about whatever albums I’ve been listening to lately. Enjoy.
Tokyo Police Club – Elephant Shell (2008)
Tokyo Police Club first bounced on the scene with their 2006 ep A Lesson In Crime. They grabbed me immediately with their combination of disaffected vocals, handclaps, group yelling and catchy keyboard riffs. Two years later, they’ve signed to Saddle Creek, and finally dropped a full length LP. While it’s a painfully-short 32 minutes long, the album takes everything I loved about their ep, and kicks it up to 11. The first single off the record, “In A Cave”, might just be the catchiest song of 2008. Highly Recommended.
Nine Inch Nails – Ghosts I-IV (2008)
I’m what you’d call an anomaly in the world of Nine Inch Nails fandom. While I certainly respect what Reznor did to define the 90’s world of Alternative Rock, I can’t say I really got into him until the release of 1999’s The Fragile. An amazing piece of work, that softer double album is considered by many of his fans as either his greatest masterpiece, or his worst misstep. I fall in the former group, so suffice to say, I’ve been left cold by With Teeth and Year Zero, which emulate the thrash rock that gave him his fame, versus the intricate beauty seen in The Fragile. With Ghosts, however, a 36-track all-instrumental album, Reznor returns to the sound which blew me away all those nine years ago. Sure, the internet is all a flutter over the straight-to-digital release of the album, but it’s good to know that’s truly worth the hype. Recommended.
She & Him – Volume One (2008)
I’m not going to lie. I have a full blown celebrity crush on Zooey Deschannel. It certainly wasn’t helped when I discovered (like most people) she had a beautiful singing voice in the Will Farrell Christmas vehicle Elf. So when I heard she was cutting an album with indie-rocker M. Ward, my interest piqued. Is it a worthy listen? Sort of. Deschannel goes to her strengths, doing songs of a more classic rock sound. Hell, if I didn’t know any better, I’d say this was a lo-fi rock album from the 60’s. As it stands, however, the sound is a bit too much on the ‘cute’ side of things to really get into. If I give the album a few more spins, I may warm up to it, but until then, I can only say….Download it.