Thursday, December 11, 2008

Hit It & Quit It: My Week at My Stereo

Mercury Rev Snowflake Midnight. Wow, was there a worse album made by a band I really like this year? If so, I haven’t heard it. I’m a big Mercury Rev Fan and I think their last album Secret Migration was a real return to form. But this one? The fey, psychedelic-lite is a little too precious for me. Senses On Fire is worth downloading, but outside of that, it’s a syrupy slog. I gave it a couple of spins and was straining through it the second time around.

Dungen 4. Love the Dungen I’ve heard, but haven’t picked up an album since their first. This one is all over the map. When the Swedish psych-pop starts getting heavy and outré, I’m all over it. I likes me a little grit. At times, especially early in the cd, things are a little lite and precious. I feel like I’m being transported to a spa in Stockholm in 1976 and I’m a little frightened. I guess I’m having trouble digesting lite and precious psychedelia these days. Pretty good all and all, though.

Vivian Girls. Wow. Don’t get the hype on this one. Can’t sing. Can’t play. It’s like third rate Heavenly or Tiger Trap! Maybe if I was 19 I’d find this charming, but I’m old and crusty, and not even the lecher in me is moved. One or two of these songs might be nice popping up in shuffle, but even in its brief 25 minute entirety it overstays its welcome.

Deerhunter Microcastle. Based purely on hype I picked this one up. I’m apparently one of the only idiots left in America who can’t find the time to listen to something free on MySpace, Youtube, Pitchfork or wherever. But whatever, I still make the rash, blind purchase. I suppose it keeps me young. After two listens, I got to say, I’m down. Definitely heavily influenced by 80s/90s indie rock. I hear a lot of Sebadoh(?!), Sonic Youth, Yo La Tengo, Stereolab. But in small doses, mixed in with some freshness as well. Not overly produced, lots of interesting sounds and textures mixed in with some good songs. Occasionally weird. Occasionally expansive. Not precious. I like.

Neil Young Sugar Mountain. I’m a fool for Neil digging through the archives. This one is from Ann Arbor 1968. All acoustic, immediately post Buffalo Springfield. The great numbers are great. Amazing versions of Birds, On The Way Home, Mr. Soul. Some of the lesser songs are lesser, but hey, it’s Neil. It’s all good. His between song banter, which is plentiful, is goofy, weird, self-effacing. He’s still honing his persona. Don’t know if that’s a good thing, but there it is. I listened to it on DVD as well. Apparently the audio is better, but I don’t know if I’m rigged for primo dvd sound. But, I will say, I checked out the “trailer” for the monstro $300+ archive release forthcoming. And the trailer is awesome, awesome, awesome. Funny. Great looking footage. Even Journey Through The Past looks good, which it must not be. I’m a cheapskate, so I doubt I’ll plonk down for the archive, but yow, it looks great!

Deerhunter, Nothing Every Happened

Mercury Rev remixes the rock out of the best song on their record!

My Favoite Dungen Song from the first album.

Not the Neil Young trailer I saw, but still!


Jay said...

Vivian Girls hype is completely inexplicable. Other than the singer being marginally "cute", there is no there there. I even saw them live 2 weeks ago and it was a total snooze; every song was derivative of the one before it, which was itself derivative of bands that weren't that special to begin with. We must be in a musical low point if this seriously is getting a second look by anyone.

Danny Plotnick said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Danny Plotnick said...

You warned me, but I bit anyway. I was operating under the principle that me and you like the same bands, but not always the same records by those bands. So I gave it a whirl. Yikes. On the other hand, I love the Tilly and The Wall stuff you pointed me too. Now that's music!

banjokev said...

Diggin your takes Danny. Love the Deerhunter tune. I get so overwhelmed sometimes trying to find new stuff. Whenever I go to Ameba (luckily we have one down here in LA too) I always wind up in the Zappa or Eno areas looking for a used copy to complete my collections. Someday I'll figure out bit torrents. But still, who to download without spending hours searching through rubbish. That Dungen video is a class act. And I can never have enough Niel. Keep it coming ...