Loud Noise and Pictures

Music and Photo Blog. It’s a new concept, so bear with it…

Posts Tagged ‘white noise

2008: An Aural Journey

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I’m not gonna sit down and do a “Top Albums of 2008” type list – I didnt listen to nearly enough albums to make judgement calls. Case in point – my former country music loving little sister recommended Fleet Foxes album to me ages ago and I still havent given it a spin, despite Nath raving about it (see previous post).

So instead, I’ll simply list a heap of albums I gave a bit of a spin this year and how they struck me…

Motley Crue – Saints of Los Angeles
This didnt get much of a rotation. The music sounded as good as ever, but the lyrics were for the most part laughable glimpses of what was for the bad boys of old.

The Drones – Havilah
Kinda disappointed I hadn’t discovered these guys earlier. Listening to this album made for a damn good drive to Sydney one day. Sounded like if Tom Waits singing old colonial Australian tunes.

The Ting Tings – We Started Nothing
I kinda liked ‘Thats Not My Name’ then I got sick of it. Then I heard the whole album and kinda dug it all. Not great, but I’ve enjoyed it when I’ve had it on this year.

Bliss ‘n Eso – Flying Colours
Aussie Hip-Hop certainly is gaining momentum, and this got a good solid months workout in my car. Several standout tracks and a little filler. Bullet and a Target was one of my favourite songs all year.

Tame Impala – Antares Mira Sun
Nath had hyped these kids up something fierce – and they delivered. Shame its such a short EP/LP/Whatever. Swirling 60’s inspired psychodelia, and other cliches – long story short, I loved it.

The Living End – White Noise
If youve heard The Living End before, you know what to expect from this album. You can listen to it (especially when the singles come on the radio) but its a bit of a trek to get throught the whole CD.

Ladyhawke – Ladyhawke
‘Paris Is Burning’ certainly piqued my interest in Ladyhawke, but when I put the album on, it was pretty disappointing. There was one or two other songs that were ok, but the album was not what I was expecting.

Empire of The Sun – Walking on A Dream
I listened to the whole album on www.thevine.com.au and it was ok. That whole retro-revamped 80’s sound got really old really quick as this album got on. Can’t say I’d rush out to get it.

Sparkadia – Postcards
Ok, anyone who knows me, knows that I am a big fan of these guys. Postcards has never been too far from my ears since it was released. Its even better live – go see a Sparkadia show – then you’ll know.

Eagles of Death Metal – Heart On
It’s funny, this album doesn’t sound that different from their others. But it doesnt make this seem old, it just makes the others seem timeless. Good hard rockin’ party tunes-a-plenty. Lovin’ it!

Kings of Leon – Only By The Night
My first listen, I hated this album. Since then it has become my most listened to album of ’08. Sure its not the gritty southern alt-rock of the previous efforts, but it’s darn catchy. It’s another case of indie-rock band loses indie rock cred when too many indie kids make them so popular non indie kids love ’em and they are no longer indie.

Metallica – Death Magnetic
Thank god for Rick Rubin. Metallica return to their roots with some decent metal tunes. I listened to this album for about a month solid after it was released. Haven’t really had it on since.

Portishead – Third
Listening to Third only made me want to listen to old Portishead. Third is ok, but – you know. It’s no Dummy.

The Black Keys – Attack and Release
Same could be said for this effort. The ‘drum and guitar’ staples from the Akron, OH boys got a working over by Dangermouse and the addition of a few other instruments. I dont think they really needed it. I haven’t listened to this as much as I did Rubber Factory.

MGMT – Oracular Spectacular
By the time I got around to listening to this, I think I was nearly sick of the singles. Its a shame, cos its a pretty decent album. I just wish it didnt inspire more flouro clad freaks at festivals to look and act weirder than normal.

Tapes ‘n Tapes – Walk it Off
A pretty underrated album with a pretty understated sound. It’s not the best thing you’ll hear all year, but there is plenty of worse albums getting alot more play – which I’m afraid to say is also the case in my collection.

Smashing Pumpkins – American Gothic
Ok – you thought I liked Sparkadia! Seriously, this is a sweet and pretty piano driven EP that if you’ve seen their recently released doco ‘If All Goes Wrong’ you’ll understand where the songs come from, but scratch your head why the other dozen of similar sounding, equally great songs were omitted.

Guns ‘n’ Roses – Chinese Democracy
Has anyone bought this? Serously. Does anyone care?



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For the last few days I’ve been talking with some guys about starting a band making some experiemental dance/noise gaze something-whatever-core music. One of the guys threw Atlas by Battles my way and I haven’t stopped listening to it. I dismissed Battles about 6 months ago at the Big Day Out because I wanted to see Tucker (who was amazing, both times I saw him) and almost went to the Battles sideshow just to see Tucker, but it was on the same night as The Police. Sting won.

Anyway, that was a stupid decison in hindsight because now I’m having kittens over Battles, not to mention I had to sit through a very awkward hour watching Fergie mangle everyone’s faces off in the booking mismatch of 2008. Where am I going with this? Towards Pivot, who have a new album out called O Soundtrack My Heart on August 18th on Warp. Didn’t I Furious keeps getting stuck in my head, and you can download that on their website anytime you like. They also made Band of the Day! Woo hoo!

When I was down in Melbourne I bought a shitload of vinyl, one of which being Cryptograms/Fluorescent Grey LP/EP by Deerhunter. These guys also have a new album called Microcastles coming out soon, which isn’t bad because they were apparently breaking up or something as of late last year. Hit up their blog for many mixtapes as well as this link showing you the sonic assault of My Bloody Valentine (“will he EVER shutup about them?” “No Honey, he won’t.”) which begs the question: Do the people hold their hands over their ears because it’s expected of them, or because it’s really THAT loud? I’m not questioning the fact that MBV is louder than Bryn Terfel with his nuts in a vice, but it almost seems like a courtesy to show the band “Hey! I can’t fucking hear!”.

Despite all that, I really admire the guy still bopping his head along to the noise. Dude, wicked.

Another (apparently – I can only tell from photos) amazing live show is by Saul Williams. His latest one produced/co-written/released/flogged to death by Trent Reznor is about to get a physical release hopefully in July. On the album is five extra tracks, one of which being a reworking of another song off the album, one being a re-release from his first album due to the song being in a Nike commercial, and another being from the NIN remix album for Year Zero (I ain’t gonna be the one to retype that l33t speak shit here).

Pitchfork put up one of the new songs World on Wheels, and it’s a catchy little ditty. Also some tour dates, but none for Australia.

Anyway, back to work.