Recent comments

  • 0007. L. Bangs' Great Lyric Challenge   14 years 11 weeks ago

    Wow! Correct around the board!

    Shalom, y'all!

    L. Bangs

  • 0007. L. Bangs' Great Lyric Challenge   14 years 11 weeks ago

    Let's see if I can get lucky with a few more! #10 is "Acrobat" by U2, #27 is "Soul Survivor" by the Rolling Stones, #28 is "The House That Jack Built" by the one and only Aretha, and #50 is "His Latest Flame" by Elvis. I'll make a disclaimer about my divining skills on these: if it weren't for your clues Lester, I doubt I would have gotten any of these (or it least would have taken a lot longer).

    Johnny Waco

  • Excellent Fiction   14 years 11 weeks ago

    Actually, I recently had a discussion with a friend of mine who really liked both, but easily preferred The Lathe of Heaven. You are the opposite, I assume?

  • 100 Best American Rock Albums (2000 Edition)   14 years 11 weeks ago

    I'd second the sentiment that this is a great addition to The Listology. Not being nearly the music expert that you or lbangs are, I'll stick to semantics . . .

    At various times the usage of the word "best" vs. "favorite" has come up here. "Best" implying some kind of quantifiable greatness, while "favorite" simply meaning "most enjoyable personally."

    So my question is, did you really mean "best" (and given the work you've put in, I don't begrudge you that), and if so how do you define it?

  • 100 Best American Rock Albums (2000 Edition)   14 years 11 weeks ago

    This list is a remarkable achievement, a massive work that obviously took much time and love of music. I'll throw some random comments down here:

    1) It's pretty hard to pick at your top ten, which is excellent. So maybe Television's album wouldn't rank quite as high on my list, but I won't deny its excellence. Solid. The top two, along with some of the sadly forgotten Sam Cooke's work, are pretty much the cornerstones of American rock, if we limit ourselves to only American albums.

    2) I've got to buy you some Prince, Captain Beefheart, and The Band albums! Unless, of course, you count The Band, the masters of Americana, as Canadian.

    3) Don't ya wish there were more good American trip-hop artists?

    4) I was a bit surprised to see Lady Soul on your list above I Never Loved a Man, and I was also very surprised to see The Beach Boys' 20/20 on here. I had no idea you would place these albums this high.

    5) I still think some of the 90s albums you have chosen are a bit over-rated (particularly the Smashing Pumpkins disc), but you already knew that.

    6) Special kudos for including many older yet brilliant artists and for giving Dylan his due. It is very nice to see Adam Again and Mike Knott grace this list. Also great to see Nuggets represented.

    I could quibble a bit with the ordering, but why? This is a great list, and both your knowledge and your personal taste shine through. A great addition to Listology! Perhaps I'll break from my CC kick long enough to dare to put together a list such as this!

    Shalom, y'all!

    L. Bangs

  • Rock-era genres I like   14 years 11 weeks ago

    I can dig that tune even if I don't sing along. I still tend to see the genres as the same, especially since the blending of different genres is largely what puts the Alt in AltCountry. Still, I can sorta see what you're getting at. I think I'll understand more if I push you with yet another question. What are the "strictly defined conventions" you see segmenting AltCountry into a seperate subset of Americana?

    Shalom, y'all!

    L. Bangs

  • Critics' darlings I don't adore   14 years 11 weeks ago

    I gotcha. Perhaps some comments on each entry would prevent others from making the wrong assumptions I did. It would also make the list a bit more fun.

    Johnny, how about a film list or two?

    Shalom, y'all!

    L. Bangs

  • 0007. L. Bangs' Great Lyric Challenge   14 years 11 weeks ago

    You got it! Another great quote bites the dust! (Play that sentence backwards and it says, "It's fun to smoke Camels"!)

    Shalom, y'all!

    L. Bangs

  • 0007. L. Bangs' Great Lyric Challenge   14 years 11 weeks ago

    Bangs, I do believe #43 is "In the Mouth a Desert" by Pavement. This is definitely one tricky list!

    Johnny Waco

  • CC00040: Talking Heads   14 years 11 weeks ago

    There you go, Johnny Waco; three more tens for the producer Eno!

    Shalom, y'all!

    L. Bangs

  • Rock-era genres I like   14 years 11 weeks ago

    My Dear Bangs, I never took your comments as adversarial; I apologize if my reply connoted that. Regarding Americana vs. Alt-Country: I see Alt-Country as a more narrow term, a genre with more strictly defined conventions. If an album is Alt-Country, it more than likely is also Americana, but not vice versa. For example, Son Volt or Uncle Tupelo are in my mind primarily Alt-Country, but by virtue of that classification, they are also Americana. Lucinda Williams or Shelby Lynne, on the other hand, are Americana all the way without being Alt-Country. Americana is simply rootsy music with an obvious fascination with America and its people; this attitude can take in country (alt or otherwise), but also southern soul, blues, or rock. I'm sure holes could be shot in this division, but that's how my mind's working at the moment.

    Johnny Waco

  • CC00039: Miles Davis   14 years 11 weeks ago

    Thanks! I extend similar accolades to your mighty American Albums lists, and I plan to comment on it soon. I'm still digesting it.

    I am considering adding the years to albums, although this is very difficult and confusing. Jazz critics tend to alternate between dating an album by its release date and its recording date, and I would have to make a judgement call here, not to mention trying to discern when critics have chosen one method over another. Additionally, the dates for albums as old as some of these is highly debated, and I would also have to educate myself more before making calls between certain dates.

    Still, a great idea. I'll look into it more and see if it is feasible.

    I plan to finish the CC list for Talking Heads you suggested and to post it soon.

    Shalom, y'all!

    L. Bangs

  • Rock-era genres I like   14 years 11 weeks ago

    Mr. Bangs?

    I promise I am more curious than adverserial here; I am truly wondering how to draw that line between Americana and AltCountry, a division that baffles me unless Americana tends to conote older music. I perfectly understand (I think) your other divisions, and I especially applaud your division of Alternative Rock from Modern Rock, although I do tend to use Post-Grunge when discribing the latter. Tomato, Tomatoe.

    I await your clarification, Mr. Waco!

    Shalom, y'all!

    L. Bangs

  • CC00039: Miles Davis   14 years 11 weeks ago

    Lester, this list is truly impressive and awe-inspiring; it makes me realize exactly what a committment it will take if I ever want to do more than just dabble in Miles. A suggestion: add years for each of the albums so that we can see the chronological range and favor of his works; I think this would be enlightening and fairly easy to do.

    Johnny Waco

  • Critics' darlings I don't adore   14 years 11 weeks ago

    Lester, I agree with you to a large extent. I don't dislike these artists at the same level; the common denominator is that I think they get a little overpraised. Big Star is the only artist here I actively loathe; the others I actually enjoy to varying degrees. For instance, Madonna is a decent artist, but I think she gets a lot of credit for having the ability to remake herself and stay ahead of the times. On the basis of the music alone, I doubt she deserves the accolades she receives.

    Johnny Waco

  • Rock-era genres I like   14 years 11 weeks ago

    Mr. Bangs, I do have (at least in my mind) clear divisions between some of these genres, even though they may overlap at times. I'll put some definitions and sample artists up with these as soon as possible. Watch this space!

    Johnny Waco

  • Rock-era genres I like   14 years 11 weeks ago

    Hmmm... I would be very interested to see how you divide Americana on this list from AltCountry on your dislikes list. Can you define how you separate the two, or is it more intuitive? Or is Americana basically the AltCountry artists you like? ;)

    Shalom, y'all!

    l. Bangs

  • Rock-era genres I dislike   14 years 11 weeks ago

    Very, very interesting and daring... I would love to see a list of exceptions to this list. For example, I heard a rumor that you pop on a Who album occasionally, even though they are a British Invasion band. I also bet that you can think of at least one Rave / House / Drum 'n' Bass / Modern Rock artist you like (I notice from another list that you like Better Than Ezra). I know you dig Dylan, who at times certainly falls under the Folk and Singer / Songwriter category; heck, the Singer / Songwriter genre was basically created for him! I'd love it if you would work up a list along these lines.

    Shalom, y'all!

    L. Bangs

  • If you enjoy movie trailers as much as I do (they,   14 years 11 weeks ago

    Trailers often do give away the best parts of movie. This bothers me less when it's the best lines than when they give away actual plot points. Studios should stick to the simple rule that no scenes from the second half of the movie should be in the trailer - that would prevent most major plot points from being revealed. It might also have the side effect of more creative trailers, and saving at least some of the best lines from premature spoilerage.

  • CC00010: David Bowie   14 years 11 weeks ago

    It would be interesting to see selected Critical Consensus lists by Producer. If you took Low and Heroes from this list, and Achtung Baby and The Joshua Tree from U2's, Brian Eno would have produced at least four "10" albums. I wonder if any of his Talking Heads work would also warrant a "10"?

  • Some Films You Might Find Confronting   14 years 11 weeks ago

    Yes, now that you mention it, I suppose the icy punishment device does indicate that the scientists are aware of the aliens' acidic blood, and are naive enough to think the beasties won't deliberately spill the blood of their own kind. But, if so, why not make it explicit? Explicitness would have been more effective, I think.

    Okay, how about this. The climax of ALIENS (I mean the second climax, in which Ripley-in-loader fights the queen alien) depends upon both doors of the airlock being open at once. But no airlock would be made so that both its doors could be opened together - at least, not without requiring a very elaborate procedure. Yet Ripley just presses a couple of buttons, pulls a lever, and sucko! I don't buy it.

  • CC00028: Alanis Morissette   14 years 11 weeks ago

    No slight intended. Since I shun newspaper music critics, who I tend to have a rather low opinion of by and large, I am rather restrained to a few on-line sources and to several published criticisms for these list. Supposed, coming out in late 98, was simply too new to be included in most of my sources, and as such, I was unable to calculate a firm critical consensus on the album. As newer sources are printed (a good number of my sources are regularly updated), I will be adding many of the later albums not present on these lists. Supposed will surely be one of them.

    Shalom, y'all!

    L. Bangs

  • CC00004: R.E.M.   14 years 11 weeks ago

    I appreciate the tip about numbering the CC entries, and I will try to convert my lists to that format.

    We seem to be sharing similar thoughts lately. I finished up Peter Gabriel last night, and I posted his list this morning. So, in particular, seems to have slipped a bit in the critics' eyes. Passion was the most polarizing album, with some critics stating it as a favorite and some critics claiming it be a boring rehash of So. Obviously, the former outnumbered the later.

    I almost put Out of Time near the top of the list. I'll share my reservations with you, and I'd like to hear your response.

    I try to use three factors when ordering the list - greatness, accessibility [sic], and the degree to which an album represents an artist's work. Greatness is most important; any album or film that easily towers over the rest of the artists' work (such as George Harrison's All Things Must Pass) will end up at the top. Baring a singular work such as this, I use the second two factors rather equally. I am rather convinced that Out of Time is the easiest REM album to listen to, but I wonder if it is very representative of their work. Other than Green, does Out of Time give a very good indication of what to expect from the rest of the group's body of albums? At the time, I thought no, giving the top slots to two albums that reflected their various sounds well (Murmur and Document) and one unique album that scored too highly to be ignored (Automatic). I am still mulling this over, however. What do you think?

    Shalom, y'all!

    L. Bangs

  • feelin' the need to see   14 years 11 weeks ago

    yeah, jim--i know what you're saying 'bout the trepidation. i've even had $20 in free rentals (from the MCI/Blockbuster deal) and i *still* haven't wanted to rent it. i'm thinking it will end up being an accident when i do...

    sorry i haven't been a better shield! LOL

  • 10 Best 20th-Century American Poems   14 years 11 weeks ago

    I always feel like I should like Adrienne Rich, but I tend to find her wordy at times. I've never read Living in Sin, though. The more I think about it, I do realize I like Margaret Atwood as a poet, as well as a novelist.