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rayword45 05-3-2018 12:38 AM

Re: Recommend me some 2018 albums halp
Day 453: Virtue by The Voidz (Album Choice: Gravity Kitten)

Truthfully, I think I have heard about three or four Strokes songs, and two of those were songs I was forced to cover for a band. This isn't caused by any disdain for the band or any of its members. As a matter of fact, this isn't caused by any emotion. I just don't care enough to check out The Strokes, and if I ever do I've gotta work up that care. So for a first album from Julian, perhaps this is a bit weird, but whatever. At least I don't have any expectations whatsoever, that's gotta count for something, right?

This first song is dividing me internally. It's catchy, the textures are great, and I fucking love that brief breakdown of broken chords. I don't have any actual complaints about this song, but it's not something that rings with me on an emotional level. In fact, it seems kinda sterile, like "we're cool, aloof and indie" sterile. That's the reason I hate bands like Vampire Weekend. Also, the autotune is unnecessary.

The general "weird out" vibe they seem to be going for is one that probably wouldn't hit me the way they intended regardless of anything, seeing how I'm guessing my taste in weird is far more esoteric than their average fan. This liberal autotune and general vocoding that seems to be a large basis for the album's atmosphere is really only bringing this album down. I'm willing to bet I'd enjoy this a lot more if the vocals were simply rawer, since strained performances and wild performances are two of my favorite kinds of singing. Outside of that, this is baby's first bizarre, with any actual moments of oddity only lasting a few seconds at best only to be brought back around to the riffs.

Speaking of the riffs, the heavy metal-aping Pyramids of Bones was probably the first track I legitimately enjoyed. The guitar is simplistic and, again, the weird-for-weirdness-sake shit really doesn't add anything, but fuck it this one is catchy in a hypnotic way. The duo of songs immediately following keep the hypnotic and the "we're better and more enjoyable than the first two tracks" while completely stripping away all traces of metal, leaving some groovy, sauntering jams that leave you in a trance. This is good stuff, especially the unfortunately-titled multitrack crooner ALieNNatioN. I guessed the capitalization the first time I typed that out and got it wrong, proving just how bad this title is Jesus Christ dude what the fuck were you thinking?

For someone who spent so much time shitting on the first 5 minutes of this album, I seem to be enjoying it so far. All Wordz Are Made Up is the first time in a while I'm completely unimpressed by a track, since it seems to want to dial up the weird yet again to nobody's benefit and generally just sounds like a shitty Talking Heads wannabe. Hey, it seems like all the tracks I don't like so far are the singles minus the one I mentioned liking. What radio stations play this shit?

...And nevermind (oh yeah, I'm spelling it like that, SUCK IT) what I just said about singles, this acoustic track is fucking terrible. No wonder this guy kept most of his album aseptic as fuck, THIS is what he sounds like emoting? Hell no.

Okay, now we're back to the fun stuff. Wink brings back that slow mesmerizing atmosphere while maintaining its own unique, bouncy sensibility. My Friend The Walls is perhaps the first time the weirdness feels less than forced to me. It's not one of the better tracks on this album, it's really rather middling, but that fact alone gives me an immense respect for it.

This is my least favorite kind of review, the "let's talk about nearly every track yet somehow have it be holistic" kind. Thus I'm stopping myself short and gonna stop typing here until I'm finished with the album.

And now that I am finished, I'm not sure if I wanna revisit this album as a whole or just the tracks I like. This is pretty middle of the road for me. The songs I like I really do enjoy, but this thing is hit-or-miss as fuck, which is basically a guarantee when you go for a genre blender approach like the one here. For such an eclectic approach, however, it's pretty easy to break this up into what I do and don't like. The slow songs are easily the best here, especially, to mention one more song by name, the song that I said "especially" for before. And especially dirge-y closer Pointlessness, which may very well be my favorite track. Outside of that, the second most common kind of song here is noise rock slop, which together are equally as hit-or-miss as the album as a whole. Then you have the tracks either trying to be weird for weird's sake (but not really being THAT weird), or being "different" like that shitty acoustic song. Fuck those songs.

And fuck finals.

Best Track: I mentioned two different tracks as serious highlights, and I can't pick either one. I'm amazed that the singles make up my two favorite tracks and three of my least favorite tracks.
Rating: 6/10

rayword45 05-6-2018 07:55 PM

Re: Recommend me some 2018 albums halp
Day 454: Xuvetyn by Lovesliescrushing (Album Choice: penancestare)

Shoegazy ambient. In its attempt to sound ethereal, the album comes across as earnest but there's a certain self-awareness lacking, particularly in the more abrasive interludes, that makes this feel like less than a cohesive whole. But those bits are brief and the rest is silken and gorgeous, if mildly repetitive. I prefer my ambient to explore worlds and atmospheres, not riff on variations of a theme.

Best Track: Blooded and Blossom-Blown
Rating: 7/10

rayword45 05-7-2018 01:06 AM

Re: Recommend me some 2018 albums halp
Day 455: 2012 - 2017 by A.A.L (Against All Logic)

Holy motherfucking shit I cannot wait to go home after 4 more nights. Let's play some house to celebrate! And also because it'll help me focus.

Well, it did indeed help me focus... I dunno why I started the sentence like that, sounds like I'm about to have something negative to say but I don't. Maybe I'm a plebeian and the fact that I just called myself has turned me briefly suicidal. God I hate that word. This shit grooves like a motherfucker and does not relent. The shorter tracks are kinda hit-or-miss but those long tracks hypnotize. Incredibly warm and organic-sounding album.

I don't have anything else to say. Fuck finals.

Best Track: I Never Dream or You Are Going To Love Me And Scream
Rating: 8.5/10

PixlSM 05-9-2018 07:36 PM

Re: Recommend me some 2018 albums halp
did you listen to singularity yet

rayword45 05-17-2018 01:43 PM

Re: Recommend me some 2018 albums halp
Day 456: Hit Vibes by Saint Pepsi

This is an album I know I listened to like 3 years ago but never bothered to review. Don't think that's a good sign. Might do some more of those that I've forgotten later on.

It's groovy, but otherwise pretty sterile and boring. I'm also completely uninterested in any satiric value here, what's new? Vocals did this man a wonder.

Best Track: the name of his future pseudonym
Rating: 6/10

PixlSM 05-18-2018 03:24 PM

Re: Recommend me some 2018 albums halp
oh yeah listen to the new beach house as well

rayword45 05-26-2018 11:23 AM

Re: Recommend me some 2018 albums halp
Day 457: Veteran by JPEGMAFIA

Is that a Motorbass sample in Baby I'm Bleeding?

That is all I've managed to write after listening to this album for like the tenth time. Great album, exactly my kind of experimental, although I have some gripes with the mixing at certain points.

Best Track: the only one I named
Rating: 8.5/10

Wayward Vagabond 05-26-2018 01:27 PM

Re: Recommend me some 2018 albums halp
have you reviewed splendor and misery by clipping. you have too many reviews for me to check

rayword45 06-4-2018 01:45 PM

Re: Recommend me some 2018 albums halp
Day Fuck You: ye by Kanye West

The Kid Cudi song is best by default. Moist and warm chicken sandwiches.

Outside of that, this album is 50% good, 50% boring. Any time it gets really empty in the production, it falters, particularly towards the first half. But then the other half of this is engaging with great features and whatnot. Not going any more in depth.

Best Track: Well, Yikes is the SECOND best
Rating: 6/10

rayword45 06-6-2018 04:23 PM

Re: Recommend me some 2018 albums halp
Day 459: Clean by Soccer Mommy

This is what evolution sounds like, I suppose. Compared to the warbly, watery recording of the last release of hers I reviewed, this actually sounds like it was recorded in a studio with a full band! Normally, I'd see that as detrimental to my enjoyment but I'm not gonna jump there yet.

The songwriting unmistakably hits a few of the same beats, but this whole thing is definitely more power pop thanks to the fuller production. There are a decent amount of more relaxed cuts, but they're far and few between (highlight Blossom (Some Subtitle) comes to mind). Thankfully, I've adjusted my expectations and now I'm less here for lo-fi and more here for catchy melodies. And catchy this is! It's not flawless front-to-back (what the fuck was the point of that interlude?), but there's at least enough consistency to justify repeated listens.

Not the greatest or most unique album ever, but a decent, worthwhile listen nonetheless. I hope to see further evolution over the years. Still ain't paying no $60 to see her live with Liz Phair. To be honest I haven't listened to Liz Phair in many years now lol.

Best Track: Last Girl
Rating: 7/10

rayword45 06-12-2018 04:16 PM

Re: Recommend me some 2018 albums halp
Day 460: Kids See Ghosts by Kids See Ghosts

Jesus Christ this album is both frustrating and disappointing as fuck, and I like it more than ye! Nearly every track here comes agonizingly close to greatness but there's something just stupid in the song that brings it down.

Take Freeeee (is that the right number?) for a prime example. I was bumping the hell out of those first 20 or so seconds, and then the title word is spoken... is this supposed to be trippy? Atmospheric? Its just fucking stupid and unnecessary! Or those goofy ass laughs in the first track, or some really cringy lines in the title track, ah whatever. The biggest exceptions to this are Reborn, probably the best overall track even if it's too long, and the closer which is nowhere near greatness, in fact it's fucking awful.

I still enjoyed it but writing about this album makes me mad. Plus, it's not as good as 2015 Cudi.

Best Track: I said it before, but 4th Dimension is also close
Rating: 7/10

rayword45 06-13-2018 02:58 PM

Re: Recommend me some 2018 albums halp
Day 461: Rausch by Gas

I liked Narkopop, I really did, but it seems a lot of people didn't. Those people are idiots.

This album is far more repetitious than any other album from this project, but that's not a bad thing, as it lets an atmosphere develop fully. I'm not sure this needed to be the full 60 minutes, though, some of the shit in the first two tracks could've been lopped off.

Still, I enjoyed this. Good for walking when you're in the midst of a minor, despondent crisis.

Best Track: The fifth one
Rating: 7/10

rayword45 06-24-2018 03:27 PM

Re: Recommend me some 2018 albums halp
Day 462: Rock Island by Palm

Meant to review this a while ago but I'm lazy. This is a good album, while simultaneously being one of the most disappointing albums of the year. After the structured yet chaotic noise bursts of Trading Basics... their next LP is just math rock Animal Collective? What the hell is this progression?

It's not BAD, mind you, and I give them props for managing to incorporate MIDI steel drum without sounding cheesy as fuck. Bands need to progress and grow, but this feels less like progression and more like "playing it safe", maybe not an entirely accurate descriptor but the amount of pop here is not what I'm looking for.

Some of these songs are great math pop, for what it's worth. The first song is gorgeous, Composite has the dude singer sounding his most Panda Bear-esque, and Swimmer is a highlight with its uniquely jazzy sound. Uniquely being the key word here, because this album is too samey.

I'm excited to see where this band goes next, but I hope they make their next one a little more dangerous.

Best Track: Pearly
Rating: 5.5/10

rayword45 06-28-2018 03:55 PM

Re: Recommend me some 2018 albums halp
Day 463: DAYTONA by Pusha T

Am I gonna review all these Kanye-affiliated albums? Almost definitely not, but I felt at least obligated to listen to this one because beef, and because I hate Drake.

I enjoyed this more than the releases that Kanye (why do I bother with this bold shit?) actually rapped on, but only marginally. Some of the same issues occur, like when the songs don't exactly sound cohesive, even if the individual parts sound marvelous on their own (the sung part in Santeria (fuck Sublime) and Come Back Baby).

Ignoring this fact though, this still feels a lot more satisfying than the other two albums with the aforementioned affiliation, avoiding the demo-esque feeling of ye (well, for the most part, funny how the song we hear the producer rap on is the one that somehow feels the least complete) or the felt missed potential in Kids See Ghosts. I shouldn't just judge this comparatively, though. Standing on its own, this album has very little filler even if some parts don't gel and stays enjoyable and engaging for the length of a South Park episode, unlike South Park. Good album.

Best Track: the first one
Rating: 7.5/10

mead1 06-29-2018 10:59 PM

Re: Recommend me some 2018 albums halp
You fucked up, KTSE is the best of the five kanye-produced albums easily imo

rayword45 07-10-2018 01:40 PM

Re: Recommend me some 2018 albums halp
Day 464: Oil of Every Pearl's Un-Insides by SOPHIE

Down the hype train we go.

My reaction upon starting this album was pure boredom.

Then, the second track started and ooooh, what is this Throbbing Gristle gone dance stuff? I quite like it actually! And toss in some extra pop and marketing sterility to the third track for even more enjoyment! I could grow to like this, even if it does drag on a tad too long.

And then we're back to being unimpressed. Is this meant to be synth soul or something? It's just boring. Although the pseudo-guitar line in Infatuation is pretty dope.

The last few tracks go back to that noisefuck that I so do love, although all of them suffer the same problem of bloat, especially the nearly 10-minute closer. Middling album with a handful of greats, overhyped indeed.

Best Track: Faceshopping
Rating: 6/10

yo man im awesome 07-10-2018 02:18 PM

Re: Recommend me some 2018 albums halp
I don't think you've done part 1 yet, but BTBAM's Automata II drops this Friday, maybe do a review for them both when it comes out?

rayword45 07-13-2018 08:36 AM

Re: Recommend me some 2018 albums halp
Day 465: Dandelion Gum by Black Moth Super Rainbow (Album Choice: Earl S.)

I tried listening to this band like 5 years ago when I was going through my Animal Collective phase in high school, but couldn't bring myself to give a shit about them. Nowadays, I also don't give a fuck about anything Avey Tare and company do, so all expectations have been erased! Besides that, I wanted to give this another shot because of a certain Nardwuar interview, and because I've been putting the Silicon Valley theme on repeat.

The first song is incredible. Then this album proceeds to be about 20 versions of the same song of varying quality, going between ass boring and enjoyable but never again reaching those heights.

So overall, meh. Not gonna bother going into more detail.

Best Track: Forever Heavy
Rating: 6/10

FirstMaple8 07-14-2018 10:58 PM

Re: Recommend me some 2018 albums halp
Hold your Colour

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