Tag Archives: Haim

The Good: 2020 Albums Countdown (30-14)

11 Dec

#28

Eminem (2 amazing 9 good 2 alfred talking(3 tot); and hated 4 of 17  =

11.8% awesome; 

52.9% good songs; 

Awesome good avg = 32.35%

23.5% hated = 

Awesome – hated = neg%

Good – hated = 29.4% good

Awesome good avg – hated = 8.85%

https://kit10phish.wordpress.com/2020/11/30/eminem-music-to-be-murdered-by-album-review/

I had to deliberate long and hard to decide where to place the album on the list.  It contains probably the best rap song of all time (yup, I said it) and also a really powerful song, that’s ne of the best of anybody this year.  Unfortunately, it also contains that Eminem-brand misogyny, violence, and toxic masculinity, as well as a denial of white privilege.  I used to overlook those things a lot because I was younger, and I could think of the guy’s real life upbringing and struggles and somewhat justify all that toxicity.  Rap is a historical record of racial politics and socio-economic struggle.  But also, it’s 2020, and these issues are at the forefront, and Marshall Mathers has had plenty of time to get counseling, perspective, and education.  So I could not bring myself to rate it in the Awesome grouping for those reasons.

#27

Alanis Moressette (3 awesome; 3 good; OK; 1 meh; 2 dislike OF 11 = 

27.3% awesome; 

27.3% good; 

9.1% meh; 

18.2% dislike

Awesome – dislike =

9.1% awesome

Good-dislike =

9.1% good

Awesome good avg – dislike = 

18.2%

https://kit10phish.wordpress.com/2020/12/11/alanis-morissette-such-pretty-forks-in-the-road-album-review/

I feel like half of this album is my favorite.  It’s a more mature version of Morissette, though she’s still got that edge I’ve always loved.  She is honest and emotional, independant, yet in this album, there’s more vulnerability then I remember on prior works.

But then half of the songs fall into the “trite” category.  Maybe a little too saccharine for my liking.

#26

T.I. (3 awesome; 9 good; 3 ok; 2 meh; 2 dislike of  20 = 

15% awesome; 

45% good; 

Awesome good avg = 30%

15% meh; 

10% dislike

Awesome – dislike = 5% awesome

Good – dislike = 35% good

Awesome good avg – dislike =

30%)

Taylor Swift

Evermore (1 awesome; 10 good; 3 ok; meh; 1 dislike of 15 (so far)

6.7% awesome; 

66.7% good

Awesome good avg = 36.7%

93.3% OK & up

6.7% dislike

Awesome – dislike = 0

Good – dislike = 60%

Awesome good avg – dislike 30%)

DON’T FREAK OUT THESE ARE FIRST IMPRESSIONS & SOME ALBUMS TAKE MANY LISTENS TO APPRECIATE

#25

Kelsie Ballerini (11 of 13 good; 1 strongly dislike message = 

84.6% good 

– 7.7% dislike = 

76.9% good)

https://kit10phish.wordpress.com/2020/12/14/kelsea-ballerini-kelsea-album-review/

I have this little theory that Taylor Swift went around and did some (uncredited) featured work on all her friends’ albums.  Like just for fun and because she can.  I talked about it on the Selena album and on Katy Perry, and I thought I heard some contenders in this album too.  I heard her on those other 2 albums, then made my theory, then listened  for it on this album.  Song candidates:

1) The Other Girl- the parts where it says, “They know about me” and also “red dress” line.

2)  and/or Love and Hate

3)  and/or Hole in the Bottle (the layered voice could easily be TS, and that last laugh?  If that’s not Taylor, then it sounds identical.  

#24

Smashing Pumpkins (awesome; 3 good; 1 ok; 6 meh; dislike of 10= 

30% good; 

40% Ok & up)

I mean, they haven’t given me all that much to say about the album.  It’s Ok, nothing really stands out except for the progressive track title spellings.  Not bad, could be more noteworthy next time around.

#23

Nada surf ( AWESOME 6 GOOD 1 OK MEH of 9 = 

66.7% good; 

77.8% ok and up )

https://kit10phish.wordpress.com/2020/12/04/nada-surf-never-not-together-album-review/

Not the “Popular” sound at all!  Far from it.  It’s actually more of a Death Cab for Cutie sound.  I was surprised this one ranked above my honorable mentions list.  It’s mellow, but not boring, and they gave me just a taste of their 1990s sound, but mostly had a new vibe.

#22

John Legend ( 4 good 3 ok of 16 =

25% good; 

44.8% ok & up)

https://kit10phish.wordpress.com/2020/11/28/john-leg

end-bigger-love-album-review/

There were many songs on this album that I didn’t like something about.  But each of those disliked songs had at least one redeeming factor, or this entire album would have been ranked lower.

#21

Katy Perry (5 good 7 OK of 12 = 

41.7% good

100% OK & up)

https://kit10phish.wordpress.com/2020/11/25/katy-perry-smile-review/

#20

Bon Jovi (2 awesome; 6 ok; 4 meh of 13 = 

15.4% awesome; 

46% ok; 

Aweseome + good avg=

30.7% good)

https://kit10phish.wordpress.com/2020/12/10/bon-jovi-2020-album-review/

Bon Jovi wins easiest, most genuine segway into current events.  He does a seamless job of staying true to his own sound, and having an album that discusses all of today’s issues.  He hits on:  Political ugliness, the division in the country, war, racial justice, covid, and I applaud him for taking it on, and doing it well.  Every artist has a responsibility to do that right now.

#19

Rufus Wainwright (2 awesome; 3 good; 3 ok; 4 meh; dislike of  12= 

16.7% awesome;

25% good; 

Awesome good avg = 20.87%

66.7% ok & up)

https://kit10phish.wordpress.com/2020/11/29/rufus-wainwright-unfollow-the-rules-album-review/

#18

The Strokes (1 AWESOME 5 GOOD 3 ok of 9 = 

11% awesome; 

55.6% good; 

Awesome good avg = 33%

100% ok & up)

https://kit10phish.wordpress.com/2020/12/02/the-strokes-the-new-abnormal-album-review/

This is one of those albums that just might be too cool for anyone listening to it.  I’m glad to hear some more true alternative genre, but some of the experimental sounds are just too much.

#17

Haim (4 awesome; 5 good; 7 ok;  meh; dislike of 16 = 

25% awesome;

31.3% good; 

Awesome good avg = 28.15%;

100% OK & up)

https://kit10phish.wordpress.com/2020/12/05/haim-women-in-music-part-iii-album-review/

I tried to listen to Haim before, because I heard a lot about them.  But I just didn’t really connect.  But some of their stuff was good on this album, and it made me want to listen to more of their catalogue again.

#16

Chris Stapleton (3 awesome; 6 good; 1 ok; meh; dislike of 14 = 

21.4% awesome; 

42.9% good; 

Awesome good avg = 32.15%

71.4% ok & up)

https://kit10phish.wordpress.com/2020/12/01/chris-stapleton-starting-over-album-review/

#15

Miley Cyrus (3 awesome; 8 good; 4 ok; meh; dislike of  15 = 

20% awesome; 

53.3% good;

Awesome good avg = 36.65%

100% OK & up)

https://kit10phish.wordpress.com/2020/12/14/miley-cyrus-plastic-hearts-album-review/

This album is awesome–but not really because of Miley herself.  She pairs with standouts and covers some favorites.  But whenever it’s Miley, by herself on her own track–it doesn’t really hold up.

#14

Lauren Alaina 

Getting Over Him

(2 awesome; 4 good  of  6 = 

33.3% awesome; 

66.7% good)

https://kit10phish.wordpress.com/2020/12/12/lauren-alaina-road-less-traveled-album-review/

Overall, I was disappointed.  If your EP is made of a few really great songs, put it out.  But if the songs are not perfect, either edit til they are better, or add some stunners and make a full album.  Also, the two things I liked best about her past album, was Alaina’s positivity and good messaging, and her vocal strength.  This EP showcased neither.

Yet, here it is at the top of the ‘Good’ list, because it’s out of 6 songs.  So maybe it’s the smartest way after all…

I didn’t realize Alaina had put out two EPs until (embarrassingly late) the day before I was ready to publish the finalized list.  Why not just make them 1 album?  So to all the people I said edit and put out an EP if you need to–never mind on that.  Spotify made it a complete pain in the ass!  It was hard to see them.  Hey Spotify developers, if you’re reading this–puh-leeze make all kinds of music chronological.

Haim: Women in Music Part III Album Review

9 Dec

I tried to listen to Haim before, because I heard a lot about them.  But I just didn’t really connect.  But some of their stuff was good on this album, and it made me want to listen to more of their catalogue again.

Las Angeles:  References to California Dreamin’, a pretty solid instrumental breakdown, and lamenting about the superficiality of LA.

The Steps:  “You don’t understand me” is such a a memorable refrain.  These gals know how to put together songs that will get stuck in your head!

I Know Alone:  The way this song could be a commercial jungle reminds me of Savage Garden’s “I Want You” and that’s an awesome thing.  If you’re writing is so catchy it’s mistaken for a jingle–that’s good.  And the production has a lot of little tid-bits to spice up the track.

Don’t Wanna:  This could very well be–Fleetwood Mac.  Not the Stevie Nicks-centered songs, but that other gal.

Another Try:  I like the chorus, as it is layered and pleasant to listen to.  My favorite thing about this song is the horn that peeks through. 

Leaning on You:  Beautiful harmony.  I know I keep saying on every song, they remind me of someone else.  But this one is reminiscent of an Indigo Girls song with the harmony and the guitar strums.  It’s rich and layered, yet stripped down.

I’ve Been Down:  It’s almost talk-singing, and that reminds me of Sheryl Crow’s “All I Wanna Do…is Have Some Fun” which is always good. 

Man from the Magazine:  “I don’t wanna hear,  ‘it is how it is’. . .  ‘it is what it is’” is an example of what Taylor has been talking about.  Just because you signed some $hitty contract as a nobody, doesn’t make it right for artists to never own their own creative output for life.  The industry needs modified.

All that Ever Mattered:  Inside the album, this song is catchy, with some of the best instrumentation of all.  But on a playlist, that screaming noise is jarring.  

FUBT:  This track has a hollow (acoustic?) sound to it that reminds me of being in a restaurant that has a featured band.  Aren’t those the BEST restaurants?!  But it’s not the best acoustics.  It’s better when more instruments filter in on the breakdown.

Hallelujah:  Sung angelically, I imagine this song brings chills to the skin and tears to the eyes when taken in live.  It’s original but still meaningful.

Summer Girl:  It’s a remixed version of the first song with a bit more jazzy vibe.  The repeated phonemes are super-catchy just as PopVerse told me they should be.  I like this version better, but both hold up.  And they’re different enough to each warrant their place as album bookends.

The Bottom 9 of My Top 50 Albums of 2017 (is that enough numbers for you?)

7 Jan

#41-HAIM
Is that an all-caps name? I don’t really care for this band because it’s too 1980s. I can’t get past that retro sound.

haim

#42-Ani DiFranco
I usually loathe her because I think she thinks of herself as clever. I almost didn’t even listen to Binary because I can’t take her pretention. But the few songs that made my list are pleasantly discordant, and Ani actually bothers to sing, rather than just talk through them like she has in the past.

#43-Fastball
The one hit wonders are back with Step into Light. They sound much the same, actually, and I liked, “Best Friend” and “I Will Never Let You Down.”

#44-Foster the People
There is such a thing as too much hipster. It’s Sacred Hearts Club. I could live with “Static Space Lovers” and “Lotus Eater” but the rest are only good if you’re the type of person that shops at pawn shops (ironically) and has a handle bar mustache. Too much!

foster the people

#45-James Blunt
Two songs made my cut with “Heartbeat” being the better.

#46-Dolly Parton
I didn’t get the memo about I Believe in You, and I really hate to rank Ms. Parton so low on any list. But this album must be aimed at children? It’s…nice. But I’m not really sure what is happening with it—it’s not for my age group. But I think Dolly Parton is a really good person, and I’m glad she’s putting some good advice and lessons within her songs. It’s just not terribly listenable if you’re out of pre-school.

#47-Seal
Don’t get me wrong—I think it’s smart to jump in the mostly empty genre of swing. Why should Michael Buble reap ALL the spoils of a whole category of music? I feel like Seal’s foray into Sinatra-inspired music isn’t the best fit. OR it could be the Jim Carey effect. Either way, a few of the songs are good, but I’m mostly left thinking, imposter.

#48-Lee Brice
A little too saccharine for me. But listenable.

#49-Lana del Ray
I don’t really care for “dream rock.” It’s too slow, and boring. It’s not stoner music like Jack Johnson, nor is it soft rock (since even that has a hook or a tune). It’s flake music. Like a space-cadet music. Honeymoon is the same as usual. I can’t even be bothered to listen to the lyrics or tell you if the songs are cohesive. It’s just too slow to catch my interest.

honeymoon

#50-Rascal Flatts
Too much. It is whiny! And Trying too hard, and disingenuous. They are trying to recapture earlier fame, but the content isn’t believable or relatable. Very disappointing of an effort–I suggest they sing about what they’re actually feeling, instead of trying to contrive emotion in order to pander.