Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome back Steven Sourman: the beige face of backwards looking music journalism.
I say, these Riot Radio fellows obviously have some doubts about their own music taste because they have asked for my expert advice on some of their favourite albums. I notice there’s no Prince amongst them so it looks like I’m in for a rough ride. Still, what do you expect from a bunch of people that refuse to fear modern music like the not-as-good-as-vintage-jazz juggernaut that it is? Anyway let’s have a look at these “albums” they have asked me to review (I say “album”, but Dark Side Of The Moon is an album – I doubt any of these could be synced in a non-ironic way with a Judy Garland movie):
Best Coast – Crazy For You
Hahaha, Riot Radio. You are joking with this one, surely? This sounds vaguely like any one of a number of albums from my collection of obscure late 50’s/early 60’s, Phil Spector influenced, out of print 45’s collection. Why would I not just go on TradeMe and buy a bunch of those at collector rates of up to $200 apiece than listen to this modern rubbish? You’re going to have to do better than that, I’m afraid.
Nirvana – In Utero
Well, while not really in my comfort zone (where are the 16 minute tapping solos in 7/8 time signatures?) this one is generally considered a classic, so I won’t bag it too much. But I really wish Kurt Cobain had included more organ solos in his music: Jim Morrison recorded five albums before he went off the deep end, while Nirvana only managed three. I think we can agree that there is an incredibly forced point to be made there.
The Naked And Famous – Passive Me, Aggressive You
A New Zealand album amongst all these albums from more reputable countries? Now I know you’re playing games with me. This sounds like a bunch of hipsters who put on their hipster clothes, went to their hipster studio, picked up their hipster instruments and decided to record some hipster songs. And as much as I understand what a hipster is, which isn’t much, that cannot possibly be good thing. If that’s not enough to pass judgment without even bothering to listen to the music properly, then I don’t know what is.
Oasis – Definitely Maybe
Pop music from Manchuria? Now I’ve heard everything. I thought we’d taught these fellows a jolly good lesson in World War 2, yet here they are releasing life-affirming rock music. I’m not even going to bother listening to this one properly: if you like Oasis, then the terrorists win.
At The Drive-In – Relationship Of Command
(Mike Riot Radio’s Favourite Album Of All Time)
What is this, I don’t even… (*composes himself*)… Hmmm, this is OK, I suppose. A bit like… (*twiddles thumbs*)… The Sex Pistols mixed with… (*twiddles thumbs some more*)… Sonic Youth and… (*gives up and looks up a random band in
iTunes CD collection*)… Dave Dobbyn. But seriously, where are the melodies on this album? Did Bob Dylan scream and jump around and collaborate with Iggy Pop and grow an afro on his classic albums? I think you’ll find he didn’t.
Stone Roses – Stone Roses
(Dan Riot Radio’s Favourite Album Of All Time)
Ah, now we’re talking. Guitar solos and released before 1990 – I’m in heaven. Admittedly, the singer can’t really sing, but the songs sound a lot like The Beatles, thus providing me with a convenient – some might say lazy – point of comparison. There’s some nice long guitar bits here too – and if there’s one thing to be learned from the success of Led Zeppelin it’s that the longer the solo is, the better – so I definitely like this. Unless hipsters like it too, in which case it is complete hipster garbage. Someone let me know in the comments, please.