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Monthly Archives: August 2010

140 Characters:
This is a review of Brothers by The Black Keys in less than 140 characters: It’s all about great songs.

140 Words:
This is a review of Brothers by The Black Keys in less than 140 words. It’s still great.

Many bands are all about sound, tone, vintage amps, etc. to the point that other aspects of writing, performing and art suffers. The Black Keys are pretty much the contemporary leader of vintage rock and blues, but, as appealing as the the warm and cozy tones and production are, this album is all about great songs. Something the copycat bands struggle to, uh, copy. I had thought they’d never do as well as Attack & Release. I was wrong. What if Hendrix had recorded an album for Motown? Album of the year.

The Black Keys - Brothers

This is a list of the highlights from the album:
Everlasting Light
Tighten Up
The Only One
Never Gonna Give You Up
(I almost wrote: “All of them”)

Haiku:
This is a haiku
About The Black Keys, Brothers
Album of the year

Haiku:
The Black Keys, Brothers/
What if Hendrix recorded/
One more for Motown?

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Male Bonding – Nothing Hurts

140 Characters:
Male Bonding, with melodies emerging from noise and reverb, extends the tradition of bands that made Sub Pop great.

140 Words:
Male Bonding’s album Nothing Hurts extends the tradition of Sub Pop bands that made the label great.

Dreamy reverb-laden effects obscure the major key pop hooks while feedback and crashing cymbals actually serve to highlight the guitar riffs played with reckless abandon. It’s great to hear music still made like this.

This is for you if you like: intros with drum stick four-counts, the punk side of post-grunge, melodies that emerge through noise with repeated listens, garages more than studios, loose and energetic over meticulous precision, analog over digital (footnote: not just tape hiss vs absolute silence, but tape stretch vs perfect synching), Sonic Youth more than Pearl Jam, Bleach more than In Utero

Male Bonding - Nothing Hurts

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Highlights (really tough to decide):
Year’s Not Long
Your Contact
Crooked Scene
Nothing Remains

Haiku:
To know Male Bonding/
Is finding a melody/
In reverb and noise

Male Bonding’s album/
extending the tradition/
of great Sub Pop bands

Dommin - Love Is Gone

Dommin

album- Love Is Gone

140 Characters:
Dommin’s Love Is Gone presents tales of disillusionment about relationships through the lenses of goth, pop, and metal.

140 Words:
Dommin work their magic through the lenses of the dark crooner: part goth, part pop, part metal.

Band namesake, Kristofer Dommin, possesses a voice that fills the speakers and is as much an instrument as any guitar or keyboard on the album. But as much as Kristofer’s heart-wrenching tales of disillusionment about relationships could be construed as a solo artist’s work, Dommin sound very much like a band, as I can attest from their intense live show.

Although one of the producers, Logan Mader, is known for his work with Machine Head and Soulfly (guitar/producer), and Five Finger Death Punch (producer), Dommin’s album, Love Is Gone, explores a range of keyboards, processed beats, atmospheric soundscapes and sludgy guitar chords.

For lovers of HIM, Type O Negative, Danzig.

Highlights:
My Heart, Your Hands
Love is Gone

Haiku:
Dommin’s Love Is Gone/
presents tales through the lenses/
of goth, pop, metal

Haiku:
Kristofer Dommin/
Fills the role of dark crooner/
disillusionment

Googled - Ken Auletta

Book: Googled

Author: Ken Auletta

140 Characters:
Googled is alarming without being alarmist; it’s a surprisingly frank history of Google that paints them as the ultimate frenemy.

140 Words:
Ken Auletta, the writer who coined the term “information super-highway,” has written a new history of Google.

Googled is surprisingly frank; it’s alarming without being alarmist, and informative without being dry.

If Google is the 800 lb avatar in the digital room, it’s best not only to know who they are, but how and why they are here. With clear and engaging language, and mining nearly countless interviews and references, Auletta paints Google as the ultimate frenemy, the girlfriend you can’t live with and can’t live without.

Auletta takes us from the creation of Google and their engineering mindset, to the wave of panic they’ve caused in traditional media companies with their belief everything digital should be free and accessible, to possible scenarios where all can co-exist.

And if for some reason you weren’t paying attention yet, well….

Haiku:
Auletta’s Googled/
Reminds us, Don’t Be Evil/
Frenemy, Google

Haiku:
Google’s history/
As ironic as it seems/
Googled is a book