Albums Heard: 2006

Tags: 
  • Want: M. Ward, Transistor Radio
  • Up soon: TBA
  • 138. Night Ripper, Girl Talk (8/14/06) $ [The 2006 album equivalent of Kiss Kiss Bang Bang.]
  • 137. /Psychocandy/, The Jesus and Mary Chain (7/31/06) £
  • 136. /Mass Hystereo EP/, Mass Hystereo (7/30/06) £
  • 135. Broken Boy Soldiers, The Raconteurs (7/29/06) £ [I think.]
  • 134. /The Young Gods/, The Young Gods (7/11/06) £
  • 133. Obliterati, Mission of Burma (6/29/06) $
  • 132. I'm Not Afraid of You and I Will Beat Your Ass, Yo La Tengo (6/27/06) $
  • 131. Pink, Boris (6/27/06) $
  • 130. We Are The Pipettes, The Pipettes (6/21/06) ¢ [Really not my thing.]
  • 129. Silver EP, Jesu (6/21/06) $
  • 128. St. Elsewhere, Gnarls Barkley (6/20/06) $
  • 127. Conference of the Birds, Om (6/20/06) £
  • 126. The Grass Is Always Greener, Barbara Morgenstern (6/19/06) £
  • 125. AssassiNation, Krisiun (6/19/06) $
  • 124. Fishscale, Ghostface Killah (6/19/06) $
  • 123. /Streethawk: A Seduction/, Destroyer (6/14/06) £ [Upgraded.]
  • 122. /If There Was A Way/, Dwight Yoakam (6/9/06) £
  • 121. /A Bell Is A Cup Until It Is Struck/, Wire (6/7/06) £ [I've had a stupid little joke I've been trying to find a place for in a screenplay for awhile now, to no avail. It's just a passing mention of a band called Cord, and their album, A Door Is Ajar Until It Is Shut.]
  • 120. /Death Chants, Breakdowns and Military Waltzes/, John Fahey (6/6/06) £
  • 119. /Ruby Vroom/, Soul Coughing (6/6/06) £
  • 118. /458489 A Sides/, The Fall (6/5/06) £
  • 117. /The Loon/, Tapes 'n Tapes (6/5/06) $
  • 116. /La Sexorcisto: Devil Music Vol. 1/, White Zombie (6/5/06) £ [Shoulda waited one more day, huh?]
  • 115. /No Need For Alarm/, Del tha Funkee Homosapien (6/5/06) £
  • 114. /Don't Slander Me/, Roky Erickson (6/4/06) £
  • 113. /Eyes Open/, Snow Patrol (6/2/06) $ [No change.]
  • 112. Occult Hymn EP, Danger Doom (5/31/06) £ [Better than The Mouse and the Mask, I think; I've never heard a hiphop track like "Korn Dogz" before.]
  • 111. Élan Vital, Pretty Girls Make Graves (5/31/06) ¢ [People think this band is actually good?]
  • 110. /The Great Destroyer/, Low (5/25/06) $ [Status upgraded to "Grower".]
  • 109. Eyes Open, Snow Patrol (5/15/06) $ [Kinda says something that I totally forgot that I bought this and heard it. I'm gonna give it plenty of chances, but it can't really compare to the hit parade of the first seven songs from Final Straw. But then, how could it?]
  • 108. /L'eau Rouge/, The Young Gods (5/12/06) £
  • 107. The Great Destroyer, Low (5/12/06) $
  • 106. /History of a Time to Come/, Sabbat (5/11/06) £
  • 105. /Bikini Red/, Screaming Blue Messiahs (5/10/06) £
  • 104. The Difference Between You and Me Is That I'm Not On Fire, McLusky (5/9/06) £ [Wow! Reminds me of Lard, which I haven't actually heard in fucking forever.]
  • 103. /Hominy/, Hominy (5/8/06) £
  • 102. The Mouse and the Mask, Danger Doom (5/8/06) £
  • 101. Rather Ripped, Sonic Youth (5/6/06) $ [I'll say. Wish I liked SY more, but it's pretty good for what it is.]
  • 100. Rocinate, Ester Drang (5/6/06) $ [Pleasant, and that's about it.]
  • 99. /Split the Difference/, Gomez (4/30/06) £ [Ah, good times.]
  • 98. How We Operate, Gomez (4/30/06) ¢ [Possibly better than that, but man, what a letdown. Without Tchad Blake producing, they're kinda just a bunch of hippies.]
  • 97. /Wolfmother/, Wolfmother (4/27/06) $ [No change, although I like it more.]
  • 96. You in Reverse, Built to Spill (4/29/06) $ [Much like Destroyer, Built to Spill needs marinating time. Didn't expect the 9 minute opener to be such a let's-get-up-and-pogo rock song, but there you go.]
  • 95. Wolfmother, Wolfmother (4/27/06) $ [Needs another listen, that's for sure.]
  • 94. The Campfire Headphase, Boards of Canada (4/26/06) ¢ [Generally, I'm not interested in ambient/atmospheric electronica. This is no exception.]
  • 93. Out Here All Night, Damone (4/26/06) $ [Like a mashup of The Donnas & Iron Maiden. Nice. A grower.]
  • 92. Garden Ruin, Calexico (4/24/06) $ [Not bad, but this is my second Calexico, and I don't think they do it for me. But if you like Calexico, I bet this is awesome.]
  • 91. At War With The Mystics, The Flaming Lips (4/22/06) $ [My first Flaming Lips album. Is it blasphemous to suggest that some of the songs -- the "Yeah Yeah Yeah" one in particular -- sound like they were written by David Brent?]
  • 90. /Bring It Back/, Mates of State (4/22/06) £ [$? What was I thinking? This album's great.]
  • 89. Skeleton, Figurines (4/21/06) £ [Like if Modest Mouse recorded in the 70s.]
  • 88. /Duper Sessions/, Sondre Lerche & the Faces Down Quartet (4/21/06) ¢ [No change.]
  • 87. /Everything All The Time/, Band of Horses (4/19/06) £
  • 86. /Dr. Octagon/, Dr. Octagon (4/19/06) £ ["Oh shit, there's a horse in the hospital!"]
  • 85. /Instrumentalyst/, Dr. Octagon (4/18/06) $ [Just not the same without Kool Keith's freaky lyrics.]
  • 84. Arular, M.I.A. (4/17/06) $ [The Neneh Cherry of 2005.]
  • 83. Everything All The Time, Band of Horses (4/17/06) [No rating, cuz I was too busy fucking around with Google Calendar. Good though; definitely a grower if not an outright £]
  • 82. Death by Sexy..., Eagles of Death Metal (4/17/06) $ [Fun, though. QOTSA for Dummies. Not that there's anything wrong with that...]
  • 81. /Worlds Apart/, ...And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead /Laughter's Fifth/, Love as Laughter (4/14/06) ¢ [No change.] [How stupid's that? I can't even remember what album I heard. Where is my mind etc.]
  • 80. /Only Built 4 Cuban Linx.../, Raekwon (4/12/06) £
  • 79. Cuts Across The Land, The Duke Spirit (4/12/06) $ [Probably a grower.]
  • 78. Passover, The Black Angels (4/10/06) £ [But barely.]
  • 77. Worlds Apart, ...And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead (4/10/06) ¢ [Sounded like Bright Eyes with rock muscle to me, but I was a little distracted, so maybe I should give it another shot. Coming up: Second Chance Fridays, when ¢ albums get another attempt to impress me!]
  • 76. /Year of Meteors/, Laura Veirs (4/8/06) $
  • 75. /Twin Cinema/, The New Pornographers (4/8/06) £ [Yet probably their weakest so far.]
  • 74. Tender Buttons, Broadcast (4/7/06) ¢
  • 73. When The Going Gets Dark, Quasi (4/7/06) $ [a.k.a. Featuring "Noise".]
  • 72. Five Songs & A Cover, Foo Fighters (4/6/06) £ [Possibly best heard in reverse order.]
  • 71. End Sessions Vol. 4, Various Artists (4/6/06) [no rating]
  • 70. Ballad of the Broken Seas, Isobel Campbell & Mark Lanegan (4/5/06) $
  • 69. /Gimme Fiction/, Spoon (4/4/06) £
  • 68. Duper Sessions, Sondre Lerche & the Faces Down Quartet (4/3/06) ¢
  • 67. /The World Won't End/, The Pernice Brothers (4/2/06) £
  • 66. /If It Was You/, Tegan & Sara (4/2/06) £
  • 65. The Loon, Tapes 'n Tapes (4/2/06) $
  • 64. The Repulsion Box, Sons & Daughters (4/2/06) £ [Just about as good as I'd hoped.]
  • 63. Bring It Back, Mates of State (4/2/06) $ [A grower.]
  • 62. Any Kind of Pretty, Daylight Basement (3/31/06) £ [It's 1981 all over again!]
  • 61. /Give Up/, The Postal Service (3/29/06) £
  • 60. Noah's Ark, CocoRosie (3/29/06) $
  • 59. /Yours, Mine & Ours/, The Pernice Brothers (3/28/06) £
  • 58. Film School, Film School (3/27/06) $ [Kinda like Editors, only without the hooks.]
  • 57. Descended Like Vultures, Rogue Wave (3/22/06) £
  • 56. Descended Like Vultures, Rogue Wave (3/21/06) [No rating, as I was too distracted to really take it in, but it sounds like a £. Another listen coming soon.]
  • 55. Streethawk: A Seduction, Destroyer (3/18/06) $ [But a grower. I suspect all Destroyer albums need acclimation time.]
  • 54. /Lullabies for an Astronaut/, Kelli Hanson (3/17/06) ¢, down from $
  • 53. The Back Room, Editors (3/17/06) $ [Have you heard "Bullets"? "Munich"? Then you know exactly what to expect. Solid, but ultimately unremarkable. But thanks again, Scott!]
  • 52. /So Jealous/, Tegan & Sara (3/17/06) £
  • 51. /Mass Romantic/, The New Pornographers (3/16/06) £
  • 50. Hearts and Unicorns, Giant Drag (3/16/06) £ [Am I getting soft, or am I just hearing a lot of good albums lately?]
  • 49. Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah (3/15/06) £
  • 48. /Electric Version/, The New Pornographers (3/15/06) £
  • 47. Discover a Lovelier You, The Pernice Brothers (3/15/06) £ [Best song title of 2005: "Saddest Quo".]
  • 46. She Wants Revenge, She Wants Revenge (3/15/06) $ [Disappointing, but not terrible.]
  • 45. /Strictly Commercial/, Frank Zappa (3/14/06) £ [Don't always care for the scatalogical humor or the lame satire -- two anti-disco songs! -- but it's clear that whatever he did, it came out exactly as intended. Was going to go with $, but the fade-out on "Montana" sealed it for me.]
  • 44. /Apologies to the Queen Mary/, Wolf Parade (3/13/06) £
  • 43. /Destroyer's Rubies/, Destroyer (3/13/06) £, up from $
  • 42. Mr. Beast, Mogwai (3/13/06) $ [Possibly a grower; but needs more "Mega-Snake" and fewer "Horses".]
  • 41. Everything Is, Nine Black Alps (3/12/06) $ [Inoffensive. And very, very short.]
  • 40. They Mean Us, The Ladies (3/11/06) £ [Best song title of 2006: "Black Metal in the Hour of Starbucks"]
  • 39. Standing in the Way of Control, The Gossip (3/10/06) £
  • 38. Lullabies for an Astronaut, Kelli Hanson (3/10/06) $ [Like Cat Power? Laura Veirs? Well then, here you go.]
  • 37. Ventill / Poki, Stafrænn Hákon (3/9/06) ¢
  • 36. /Unhalfbricking/, Fairport Convention (3/7/06) $
  • 35. /The Clash (U.S. Version)/, The Clash (3/7/06) £
  • 34. Different Days, L'Altra (3/5/06) ¢ [Starts off well enough, but gets stuck in an emotional rut. Maybe if I were much happier or more depressed...]
  • 33. /Happy Sad/, Tim Buckley (3/4/06) £
  • 32. Gypsy Punks: Underdog World Strike, Gogol Bordello (3/2/06) $ [Technically, this should be a £ -- there isn't a bad song here -- but still, I can't imagine listening to this very often. Way too long, for one thing.]
  • 31. /Natural History/, I Am Kloot (3/1/06) £
  • 30. Funeral Music, Tim Seely (2/28/06) $
  • 29. /Madvillainy/, Madvillain (2/27/06) $
  • 28. One Way Ticket to Hell... And Back, The Darkness (2/26/06) £ [Not quite as good as the first, but at the same time, pretty much the same thing. In other words, you know who you are.]
  • 27. Destroyer's Rubies, Destroyer (2/26/06) $ [but could grow into a £; also, see comments below.]
  • 26. /Logic Will Break Your Heart/, The Stills (2/24/06) $ [Reminds me of The Church, for some reason.]
  • 25. /Something About Airplanes/, Death Cab for Cutie (2/24/06) ¢ [I like Death Cab a lot, but this, their first album, is not their finest moment.]
  • 24. Live at Stubb's, Matisyahu (2/22/06) $ [And I don't even really like reggae!]
  • 23. Underachievers, Please Try Harder, Camera Obscura (2/22/06) $ [Heh, what a perfect title for my birthday. Anyway, not bad, considering I'm not into the whole Belle & Sebastian thing.]
  • 22. Demon Days, Gorillaz (2/21/06) $
  • 21. Picaresque, The Decemberists (2/17/06) £
  • 20. Some Stupid with a Flare Gun, Ass Ponys (2/16/06) £ [Dumb name, great album.]
  • 19. /Funeral/, The Arcade Fire (2/15/06) £
  • 18. M83, M83 (2/14/06) ¢
  • 17. Laughter's Fifth, Love as Laughter (2/13/06) ¢
  • 16. /Final Straw/, Snow Patrol (2/11/06) £
  • 15. Everything Ecstatic, Four Tet (2/10/06) $
  • 14. I'm Wide Awake, It's Morning, Bright Eyes (2/10/06) ¢ [Not bad I guess, but really not my thing.]
  • 13. Black Sheep Boy Appendix, Okkervil River (2/9/06) £
  • 12. /Silent Alarm/, Bloc Party (2/9/06) ¢
  • 11. Me First, The Elected (2/8/06) £ [Glitchy electronics and slide guitar! Seriously, what's not to like?]
  • 10. The College Dropout, Kanye West (2/7/06) £ [Although the anti-education stance is baffling.]
  • 9. /Levitate/, Idaho (2/6/06) $
  • 8. We Have Sound, Tom Vek (2/5/06) $
  • 7. /The Futureheads/, The Futureheads (2/4/06) &#162 [The artpunk version of "Baby On Board".]
  • 6. Destroy Rock & Roll, Mylo (2/3/06) $ [but could grow into a £]
  • 5. In The Clear, Ivy (2/2/06) &#162
  • 4. Feels, Animal Collective (2/1/06) $
  • 3. Black Mountain, Black Mountain (1/31/06) $
  • 2. Tiny Cities, Sun Kil Moon (1/30/06) £
  • 1. /Paul's Boutique/, The Beastie Boys (1/29/06) £
Author Comments: 

I have a backlog of music, both mine and given to me, that I hadn't gotten around to, because I wanted to listen to all the unheard stuff that was already on my new laptop. ANYWAY, I finally did that, and now I can get to it. I plan to listen to one complete album every day until there's none left. Let's see how it goes, shall we?

Also: check out this list, organized by rating.

/heard before/

Quick 'n Easy Rating System:
£ (thumbs up)
$ (thumbs sideways; probably only liked 1/2 the songs. But not bad by any means.)
¢ (thumbs down; which may mean it's bad, or more likely, just wasn't my thang-thang.)

Tiny Cities: Red House Painters cover Modest Mouse? Hmmmm...

Yeah. I know absolutely zip about Mark Kozeklenananak or whatever his name is, but I liked this. I get irritated with reviewers (i.e., Pitchfork) who wail and gnash their teeth and scream "You can't cover Modest Mouse!". Jeez, it's just music...

Are you kidding? Art-music ensemble Bang on a Can covered Brian Eno's ambient Music for Airports album. You can cover anything!

A cover of Music for Airports? Now I have, indeed, heard everything.

[croak]

So ... what did you think of "Feels?" Did you ever get to listen "Sung Tongs?"

I still brood over the fact that I missed Animal Collective AND Black Dice in concert in 'iladelph. :-(

This was my first exposure to Animal Collective, after listening to the song "Grass" quite a bit. I liked it -- I think I like the upbeat stuff ("Did You See The Words", "Turn Into Something") better than the slower, droney kind of stuff (like "Daffy Duck"). So I don't know what their old stuff is like, if it's more like one or the other.

Thumb Down for Bloc Party?, that makes me sad.

Sorry -- I've listened to it nearly 3 times now, and I just don't get the hype.

I'd like to take that Oberst kid and choke him ... or at least make him stop releasing multiple discs a year.

Dear Conor Oberst,

I don't know if you've heard of it, but there's a new method of artistic expression that's become popular in recent years. It's called a "novel". One of the advantages of the novel (or "book") is that it doesn't require music to go along with the words. Maybe this is something you'd be interested in?

Sincerely,

kza

Sorry y'all, but I like me some Oberst. Maybe I'm secretly emo.

Dude, say it ain't so on you being emo.

Apparently, Steve, your love of Oberst is a heartbreaker.

Don't worry. I still hate Fall Out Boy. :-)

Christ -- I know someone must like them, but I can't imagine anyone not wanting to, how did Sicinski put it? Pelt them with garbage.

that Beastie Boys album is a total classic.

Aint it, tho? I used to have it, oh so long ago, but lost it sometime in college, then recently got it again through a friend's iPod. That was my first listen in over ten years.

So, about that new Destroyer album: When I first started getting into the New Pornographers, I also got my hands on Destroyer's Streethawk and This Night -- and I couldn't even finish them. So I stuck them in th back of my hard drive and went on with my life. But as the years passed, my favorite member of the NPs slowly evolved from Neko Case to Carl Newman to Dan Bejar, and I started orbiting the Destroyer catalog. But I'd download a free song and it just wouldn't click with me. Finally, the new Destroyer came out last week to rave reviews, and what's more, the word was this was a more accessible album than previous efforts. I downloaded three (!) songs from Salon, and once my disappointment that it wasn't the Destroyer album I really wanted to hear (i.e., one produced by Carl Newman) passed, I was surprised to find them very, very good. Someone on a blog somewhere compared Dan Bejar to coffee -- an acquired taste -- and I couldn't agree more. (Which I guess makes the NPs a super-sweet iced mocha, and This Night some kind of intense Turkish espresso.) Anyway, the new album is pretty good, and probably a grower, and I recommend that anyone interested download "European Oils" and "Painter in your Pocket" from Salon.

We couldn't disagree more on the new The Gossip. I rated it my worst album of the year so far.

You have to hear the new Matisyahu, it's absolutely incredible. I'm not a big fan of reggae either but he's just got so much passion behind his dub that I'm fascinated with it. I think he's proof that Rasta and Judaism are the same thing because he changes no lyrics from what another reggae artist would do.

What didn't you like about the new Gossip?

Oh, and I'll probably end up getting the new Matisyahu sometime in the future. I think my wife likes him more than I do!

I'm just giving it another listen right now to recheck my thoughts. Thusfar, all I can figure my initial nausea was based on was her voice mixed with the combination of classic music genres makes it feel really derivitive. I'm not big on the garage rock revival in general though.

Ah, see, that intersection between 50s/60s style emoting, garage rock and dance rock is pretty irresistable to me.

Fair enough. Why only the dollar on the new Mogwai?

Well, I did designate it a "grower", which means it could turn into a £; it certainly feels like a cohesive, thought-out album, one for the ages. But after one listen, it also seems like it slows down too much by the end, and I just wasn't ready to take the plunge and call it one of the best of the year.

But the Destroyer album recently went £, so there's always hope.

I can see you're not going to like the She Wants Revenge CD in my crystal ball based on your comment. I think we'll never be swapping CDs via mail. :)

Ha! Actually, you very well may be wrong -- I have nothing against pastiches, or even out-and-out ripoffs, if they can bring the pop goodness. (For example, I really really loved Andrew W.K.'s first album.) That's what I'm hoping for here (I bought the SWR, believe it or not -- it was only $7) -- the CD equivalent of candy sampler: yummy, disposable, and very very bad for me :-) We'll find out tomorrow!

Oh, and I keep forgetting that SWR is Justin Warfield's latest project. The album gets the benefit of the doubt because of him.

What did you think of Bloc Party's "She's Hearing Voices." It's a whole album of that song. :)

Andrew W.K.'s first album is my guiltiest pleasure!

Whew -- I didn't like the Bloc Party album, but I did like a few songs. I checked, and that's one of the few I liked!

You haven't heard the new Yeah Yeah Yeahs, have ya? It's...okay IMHO.

Not to bash the idea of a Zappa 'greatest hits' CD, but his best work and his most commercial work are almost always mutually exclusive. That said, I respect any ostensible 'greatest hits' collection that has the gumption to put "What's the Ugliest Part of Your Body?" right up against "Dancin' Fool."

Eeep... "Ugliest Part" isn't on my version of the album.

Wow, really? Maybe I'm misremembering it.

Are you thinking of Strictly Commercial's companion album (the name of which escapes me) that has all the stuff not safe for radio?

Actually, no -- I was misremembering. It was "Let's Make the Water Turn Black" that I was thinking of. D'oh.

And I do believe the album to which you refer is "Have I Offended Someone?"

Ah, right. Yeah, that song is pretty jaw-dropping.

But until I expand my Zappa knowledge, my faves are "San Ber'dino" and "Dirty Love".

Am I getting soft, or am I just hearing a lot of good albums lately?

You're complaining? :-)

I can send you The Editors album if you want.

I agree with you re: The Editors album.

One thing I want to throw out there: Okay, I get how the singer's voice is similar to Ian McCulloch's, but why the Interpol comparisons? I'm sorry, this early 80s U2, thru 'n thru.

And another thing, while I'm ranting: I'm the last person to complain about lyrics, generally; but some of these are pretty dumb.

Interpol Editors are more about emotion than lyrics, but I have to admit to being shaken a little when he just keeps repeating You don't need this disease like it's a rallying cry.

And You Will Know Us By Our Godawful Long Name

And the sad part is every one of their songs is about as long as complicated as their name - yet somehow also as creative.

Did you hear Art Brut's superfun "Bang Bang Rock and Roll" yet? I don't see it listed but maybe I'm missing something (what else is new?).

Oh, and I feel the same way about the Black Angels album.

I've only heard snippets of Art Brut on iTunes, but I like what I've heard. It's the kind of album that ends up in my friends' collections, so I suspect I'll hear it sometime this year. :)

I'm listening to the Flaming Lips album as I scan through the web, and actually laughed at loud at your comparing Wayne Coyne to Ricky Gervais' character from "The Office." Bravo. ;-) It's all about street cred for the Lips at this point, though I do like their previous two albums a lot.

I'm glad someone thought it was funny!

Martin gave me Yoshimi (which I've heard nothing but raves for), so I'll be getting to that. One day.

Now that I've listened to the new SY a couple of times, I'd say that I like it fine (and a lot more than their last few albums), but it's a far cry from the stuff they were doing in the eighties.

And to think, as good as "The Difference..." is, "Mclusky Do Dallas" is even better.

Also, don't worry -- nobody's heard Lard in forever. There's a reason for that.

And to think, as good as "The Difference..." is, "Mclusky Do Dallas" is even better.

You lie!

Not at all. I can think of three songs from "Dallas" off the top of my head that trump anything on "Difference" ('Lightsabre C***sucking Blues,' 'Collagen Rock' and 'What We've Learned'). Also, "Dallas" doesn't end with a soggy song like 'Support Systems.' Don't get me wrong, "Difference" is great, but "Dallas" is immortal. Like Thor.

Listen to the new Snow Patrol! I mean, don't wait. You know the scene in "Garden State" where she says "this will change your life?" It's like that!

Alright, I only rank it the #5 CD of 2006 so far but it's seriously the best CD to come out in months!

You know, I'm almost afraid to, since I totally fell in love with Final Straw and after the Gomez Incident, I'm wary of new CDs from bands I like.

On the other hand, I will, in all likelihood, own this within a week anyway, because my wife loves Final Straw probably more than I do.

Even if you're disappointed by most of the album as a whole, there are about three songs that are some of the most amazing tracks of the year.

From what I've heard, Elan Vital is a rather dramatic departure in style from PGMG's first two albums (both of which have at least a handful of good to very good songs on them).

I'll have to take your word for it. What I'm hearing is a band that doesn't know who they are or what they want to be.

I hate ... Pretty Girls Make Graves ... so much ... tears of rage form when I think about them.

Yowza!

They seem a bit too middle-of-the-road to inspire hatred. I'd save my hatred for the bands that really deserve it. Hippie jam bands or contemporary country anyone?

I just caught Tapes 'n Tapes live, playing with Cold War Kids and Figurines, and to be honest, I thought Figurines were the best out of all of them (so in response to your "$" for "The Loon," I'm in complete agreement).

And Figurines didn't dress like it was the 70's, more like the '90s: Flannel everywhere (well, they are from Copenhagen, so that might have something to do with it).

Finally got a chance to listen to "Destroyer's Rubies." It's so well done but there's just something missing to me. There aren't really any hooks in most of the songs (except "Priest's Knees"). It also feels like they know how good it is so they make every song epic.

By the way, I'm about to leave for the Pitchfork festival here in Chicago and I think half of the bands that you've reviewed CDs from are playing it. So thanks for the recommendations since I probably wouldn't have heard a few of those bands otherwise before the concert!

You don't think there are any hooks in "Painter in Your Pocket" or "Watercolours into the Ocean" or "European Oils"? Interesting. "Priest's Knees" is one of the last songs I'd think of in terms of hooks.

Pitchfork festival? As in the website? I didn't even know such a thing existed! I'm jealous :-) Please report back.

By hooks I mean more vocal than sonic. About the only lyric that I can't get out of my head is the "west coast maximalist" line from "Priest's Knees."

Yep, as in the site. It split off from the Intonation Festival so now we've got two big two day indie love fests in Chicago. :) Silver Jews and Os Mutantes are the two headliners but Destroyer, Tapes N' Tapes, Art Brut, The Futureheads, Yo La Tengo - they'll all be there. Oh and Mission Of Burma which I am really psyched to finally see after all these years.

I'm going to take pictures so I'll post a link to those once they're ready.