East Bay View (a blog about several things)

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Friday, April 04, 2008

Top ten: Real time

1. Peter Bjorn and John, "Objects of My Affection": What do you know, they do have a great song. I'll forgive the odd ESL rhyme for an "In My Life" rewrite that isn't so starry-eyed as to attribute it all to one love -- though love's never far from their minds. Really, they do care about the young folks. But they're glad to have grown up.

2. Okkervil River, "Our Life Is Not a Movie or Maybe": Terrific-sounding lyrics, filled with repetitions and internal rhymes. Also a neat rhythmic pattern which puts notes you expect on the 1 on the 3, which, coupled with his fourth bar windup minimises the dead time without voice (without needing to, you know, hold long notes and stuff). Plus the "bad movie" simile: how literary! I mean cinematic!

3. The Go! Team, "Grip Like a Vice"/"Titanic Vandalism": What's the name of this nation? Is this the Cosmic Force? Is this the Funky 4 + 1? Is this the BBC? I thought it was the U.K.

4. Kalima Pierre, "Olingi na sala boni"/"Bomba na motema": The revelation of the Roots of Rumba Rock compilation. Everything you could want in mid-Fifties Congolese rumba is here - a brass band! Thumping drums! And on "Olingi na sala boni", out-of-tune vocals!

5. Kings of Leon, "Knocked Up": They may have have less than chaste reasons for keeping the car running. But they're still heroic.

6. Wu-Tang Clan, "The Heart Gently Weeps"/"Wolves": The album is a patchwork, like every other Wu albums, so the memorable tracks are the well-hooked. "The Heart Gently Weeps" while "Wolves" is lover-not-widowermaker George Clinton's field guide to canids. Raekwon and Ghost elevate the former, while Meth more surprisingly adds value to both.

7. Alicia Keys, "Like You'll Never See Me Again": With ritual song sacrifice left to Idols these days, big R&B ballads are better sung now than in decades, and Keys sings these as well as anyone save Beyonce.

8. The Vandermark 5, "Speedway (for Max Roach)": This month's Vandermark: psycho-electrocello!

9. Three Tenors of Soul, "All the Way from Philadelphia": I barely know the Stylistics, and had look up Blue Magic and the Delfonics -- but everyone knows Hall & Oates!

10. The National, "Fake Empire": It's hard to have false consciousness if you're not fully conscious.

Twelve more: Gary Allen, "Watching Airplanes"; Band of Horses, "Is There a Ghost"; DJ Khaled ft. Akon, T.I., Rick Ross, Fat Joe, Baby & Lil Wayne, "We Takin' Over"; The Go! Team, "The Wrath of Marcie"; Happy Apple, "Very Small Rock"; Les Savy Fav, "Patty Lee"; Little Boots, "Stuck on Repeat"; Magnetic Fields, "California Girls"; Kalima Pierre, "Na mokili moko te"; Rich Boy ft. Andre 3000, Jim Jones, Nelly, Murphy Lee & The Game, "Throw Some D's Remix"; Jill Scott, "All I"; Wu-Tang Clan, "Sunlight".

All this group needs to do to be listenable is replace all their members: Klaxons.



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