Sunday, October 30, 2005

I'm back! Liz Phair and Switchfoot cd reviews!

I’m so sorry that I’ve been on hiatus for a while. It’s not that I gave up on the blog, just because lately I’ve been so damn busy that I couldn’t find time to write reviews for my recent listens. If I worked for a newspaper, I should have been fired a long time ago ;-) . These reviews come to life so damn late, I know, but I hope you’re still around and keep supporting me. Remember to add a comment if you’ve got something to say. Here you go. Keep checkin’ back, I still got plenty to post, including all-new cd reviews of Ashlee Simpson, Franz Ferdinand, Alicia Keys, Santana and more.

Liz Phair/ Somebody’s Miracle

To be honest, I used to have no idea who Liz was when she was an indie rocker, it was only she released those two catchy pop rock singles ‘Why Can’t I’ and ‘Extraordinary’ (which were both added to film soundtracks) that I knew her name. However, her new album didn’t quite live up to my expectations. It’s a clear failure. The songs are mediocre, her vocals somehow sound terrible. There’s almost no potential hit that can score as much as ‘Why Can’t I’or ‘Extraordinary’, except ‘Count On My Love’, which should have been the first single off the album instead of ‘Everything To Me’. It all seems to be an uninspirational, boring mess. Too bad that Liz can never really popular although she tried to change her directions. This time around, she seems lost, maybe what she should do next is go back to indie stuff.

Rating: 2/5 stars
Trackworthy: Count On My Love, Giving It All To You, Everything To Me, Table For One.

Switchfoot/ Nothing Is Sound

What do Liz Phair and Switchfoot have in common? Well, they both receive mainstream attention with big soundtrack hits ( remember ‘Dare You To Move’ from ‘A Walk To Remember’ and ‘Meant To Live’ from ‘Spider-man 2’?) . And neither of their new albums impress me. Except the outstanding track ‘Stars’, the rest of the album can be as boring as the bible (sorry if that offends). Most of the tracks are just bland, they sound like they try too hard to be emotional and rocking and religious at the same time. If you want to learn some diddly-doo lessons from the lyrics, the first thing you have to get through is the music. I just hate it when you get all hyped up for an album and then find out it isn’t as great as you think it’s supposed to be. This sophomore effort won’t ever get near the 2 million copies mark of their debut, those are my words.

Rating: 2/5 stars
Trackworthy: Stars, The Shadow Proves The Sunshine, The Setting Sun, Politicians, We Are On Tonight.

PS: BTW, have a creepy, wacky Halloween, folks! I’ve just finished The Simpsons ‘Treehouse of Horror’ back-to-back marathon, and man, great toon stuff right there.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Sheryl Crow and Sarah McLachlan new cd reviews

Sheryl Crow – Wildflower

A brand new effort from Crow since her greatest hits album, and this time, she does sound different. Slower, lighter, and more bittersweet. Could Lance Armstrong be the reason for this change? Guess so. Still good old Sheryl Crow with nice vocals, lots of guitar playing, and lyrics about loneliness, feelings of life and conscience. There are many decent, emotional tunes that are just perfect for chilly nights, leaving you wanting for more. The title track Wildflower is a little delicate number, while Perfect Lie, Letter To God and I Don't Wanna Know are touching, along with the rockin', inspirational Live It Up. Although there's no song that can top her old hits, they still prove that Sheryl's one of the best female singer/songwriters out there.

Rating: 3.25/5 stars
Trackworthy: I Know Why, Perfect Lie, Good Is Good, Letter To God, I Don't Wanna Know, Wildflower, Live It Up.

Sarah McLachlan – Bloom: Remix Album

At first, it doesn't seem right as all for a Sarah McLachlan remix album. This is her second remix album, and as a big fan of her, I still don't understand why she wanted to do this. The term 'Sarah McLachlan' and 'dance music' just obviously don't match. Even though the remixes tend to be more like chillout than hardcord techno stuff, they're still so mediocre. How can you expect to hear an angelic voice singing heartwarming lyrics in loud beats and techno tunes? To be honest, it takes me a week to try to get through all of the tracks. They just sound so wrong and mismatched. It's like she just threw a song for each dj and let them do what they wanted with it, and the djs didn't seem to put much effort into their work. The remixes really just passed through my ears, even the wil.i.am remix (wo, he's everywhere now) of Just Like Me (feat. DMC) doesn't do any good either. This album is a such a bad cash-in, the worst album of Sarah it is.

Rating: 1/5 stars
Trackworthy: Not much. Try 'Stupid (Hyper Remix)' and 'Train Wreck (Sly & Robbie Mix)'.