Saturday, September 16, 2017

We travelled so far (Mary Chapin Carpenter) (LP 144)

Mary Chapin Carpenter The Age Of Miracles (CD Zoë Records, 2010) *** 

Genre: Country

Places I remember: Virgin Megastore Dubai Mall

Fab, and all the other pimply hyperboles: I Put My Ring Back On

Gear costume: Iceland is spookily good, We Travelled So Far and Zephyr will always remind me of driving in the Tiida with Jacky from Al Ain to Dubai.

Active compensatory factors: Because of that association with driving around in sunny Al Ain, it's my favourite studio album by MCC. 

It starts off with four terrific songs but things then get a little too hushed and maudlin for a bit (something David Crosby also suffers from periodically). Iceland gets the mix right before a strong close. 

Where do they all belong? Party Doll and other favourites is still the best way to approach her particular genius. 

It's got live stuff, studio gems, and beautiful cover versions of Mick Jagger's Party Doll and John Lennon's Grow Old Along With Me. It is superb!

Monday, September 11, 2017

Nobody listens to silence (Ryan Adams) (LP 142 - 143)

Ryan Adams Easy Tiger (CD - Lost Highway, 2007) ****
Ryan Adams Ryan Adams (CD - PAXAM, 2014) ****

Genre: Americana

Places I remember: Kings Recording (Abu Dhabi)

Fab, and all the other pimply hyperboles: Pearls on a String (Easy Tiger); Trouble (Ryan Adams)

Gear costume: These Girls (Easy Tiger); My Wrecking Ball (Ryan Adams)

Active compensatory factors: Easy Tiger (as in slow down big boy) is a return to a Heartbreaker style sound that is easy on the ear. Some memorable songs and some great picking from The Cardinals make Easy Tiger a stand out in the vast Adamsverse.

Ryan Adams is a great companion album. It's a more electric sound with some great organ from Benmont Tench. That and other things give the album a strong Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers sound at times.

With all his outrageous gifts on display, the first five songs - Gimme Something Good/ Kim/ Trouble/ Am I Safe/ My Wrecking Ball are completely wham bam.

Because of his profuse output, Ryan Adams can be maddeningly inconsistent but when he gets it right, as he does on these two albums, he's hard to beat!

Where do they all belong? Some live stuff and the awesome Taylor Swift cover album to come. The late twenty teens have been fertile ground.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Cosmic trip (Air) (LP 141)

Air Le Voyage Dans La Lune (CD - Virgin, 2011) ****

Genre: Progressive rock

Places I remember: The Warehouse (Hastings)

Fab, and all the other pimply hyperboles/ Gear costume: Cosmic Trip 

Active compensatory factors: I wouldn't file this under 'soundtracks' on my shelves (and I haven't) as it's more 'inspired by' than anything.

I have a soft spot for the hippy trippy progressive sounds of Air. They are one of many bands inspired by the progressive, experimental sounds of Pink Floyd. And that can't be bad in my book (of rock).

They have definitely carved out a distinctive sound of their own and for my money (it's what I want) they are at their best when going the cinemascopic route, as they do here.

Where do they all belong? That's it for Air. Next stop in the prog department is on the heavier side of things - with some prog metal!