Friday, April 09, 2004

#18) The Feelies - Crazy Rhythms (released in 1980, I got this on used cassette at Arboria my freshman year of high school)

Review that made me want to buy Crazy Rhythms: “Among the formal breakthroughs managed by the Velvet Underground was something called the drone strum. As perfected by Lou Reed, this strum didn’t syncopate to emphasize the backbeat the way rhythm guitar usually did – in fact, it barely syncopated at all, tending more toward chopped, evenly-accented eigth notes dropped squarely on the beat. And it was this nervous chink-chink-chink-chink-chink-chink-chink-chink that gave the likes of “I’m Waiting For The Man” and “White Light/White Heat” their anxious edge. That same strum is at the heart of the Feelies’ sound on Crazy Rhythms.” (J.D. Considine, The Rolling Stone Album Guide (1992)

Most accurate description of the album’s sound I’ve read: “Pink Flag played at Marquee Moon length.” (Eric Weisbard, The Spin Alternative Record Guide)

Liner note percussion credits (in order of appearance): timbali, sandpaper, claves, snare drum, tom-toms, can, temple block, shaker, bass drums, boxes, castanets, drums, maracas, drum kit, bell, coat rack, pipe, cowbell, sleigh bells, woodblock, kit drums, spasmodic drums, anchor drum, random tom-toms, shoes, reverbed sticks, percussion

Most annoying aspect of owning Crazy Rhythms on cassette: the four minute gap after “Forces At Work” before it switches over to side two.

Word I most often use to describe the “drone strum” sound, which is not making its first or last appearance here on my countdown: caffeinated

Possible reason I think I underrated this album when I finished this list at the beginning of the year: I gave up soda cold turkey two or three weeks ago (I don’t drink coffee) and this album is working like a patch.

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