Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Spent the last few days hanging out with music-lovers-not-critics, hearing stuff like Steve Reich, Captain Beefheart, J.S. BACH, the Dreamies, the Plastic People of the Universe, Felt, the Dentists, and Kanye West, whose album tracks are a lot better than some of the singles (I know at least one of you will be happy to hear me say this). Decent speakers are something I've never had and I really need to get them. I bet I'd go through fewer cynical moods about music if I wasn't listening to CDs and MP3s through tin cans.

I'd also have fewer James Murphy-esque funks if I'd remember to listen to the radio more often. Heard Akon's "Lonely" for the first time last night, and I almost wish I was still annoyed by Kanye so I could say that this track finally uses the chipmunk voice right. I don't remember digging any of his earlier singles, so I wish this was just a one-off and that his name was Akorn. They followed it with "Harder To Breathe," where Maroon 5 injects Rob Thomas into the Lenny Kravitz blueprint and winds up with something that doesn't resemble fart. Ok, it resembles fart - I found it exceptionally repugnant for months - but its a masterpiece of studio fonk, vicious and tacky. I heard the new Rob Thomas track yesterday too. I'm not sure just HOW great it is, but I'm all for his decision to go Timberlake on us - it's saucy! Not sure I'm ready for the eventual video though, as the man will never have a decent haircut. I should go cold turkey on those things anyway, but then I'd never have caught "Mr. Brightside." Maybe I'll make an exception for Sophie Muller and Spike Jonze.

The new Will Smith track, which followed Robbie Tommy, is unwarranted. He's a fine actor, but self-expression hasn't proven rewarding lately. He should drop some kind of nostalgiac A Grand Don't Come For Free narrative about the West Philadelphia playgrounds where he used to spend most of his days. Especially if he's gonna sound like a milquetoast Kurtis Blow.

Big props to William, Tyler, Harlan, Jefferson and Marty for keeping my ear open.

No comments: