Tag Archives: review

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.

Bon Jovi: 2020 Album Review

10 Dec

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.

Limitless:  It’s an upbeat and exciting opener.  Well, it took a long time, but Bon Jovi’s voice is shot.  The shimmer & jitter have impacted the vocal quality throughout.

Do What You Can:  Speaks to the anxiety of our nation right now.  It’s a reminder to stay vigilant and social distance, but that doesn’t preclude helping a neighbor or stranger.  America needs to hear it.  It’s nice to have a covid song that stays within the band’s typical sound, where the writing is not forced.  

American Reckoning:  “Our conscience has been looted, and our soul is under siege.”  Bon Jovi discusses our racial tensions and how history repeats.

Beautiful Drug:  Extending syllables “lo-ah ah ah ah uv” does a lot to make a song catchy.  It goes all the way back to our first infant babbling of phonemes like ba ba, na na, etc.  It’s used effectively in this tune, and was the first song on the album that really caught my attention.  And though I think the sentiment is naive (for where we are as a country) I can appreciate the optimism.

Story of Love;  I totally tuned out of this one.  The song tells of relationships between parents and children, which is nice.  It’s a little too melodramatic, though.  The instrumentals in the last third of the song redeem it.  I was about to take it off the list, but it goes out pretty nicely.

Let it Rain:  Good beat to start.  I can tell it’ll be exciting.  The sample is cool, and just a bit overused.

Lower the Flag:  A somber tone.  This is really meaningful, and genuine.  I like the idea of limiting the jingoism a bit.  We can be more moderate is what Bon Jovi suggests.  The fast part is catchy and I like it.  I’m not sure about the call outs, but it doesn’t ruin the song.

Blood in the Water:  I don’t know…  I can see he’s going for a relevant song , but it’s too much with devils and sharks.

Brothers in Arms:  I think this song represents Bon Jovi’s catalogue best.  It’s rock and a little gritty.  And it’s a message we’re all related and need to stick together.  And hello, is this miraca that I’m hearing–it’s pretty much the best.

Unbroken:  This song is Ok.  I like how the cadence is like a hymn and the subject is military.  But I just–maybe it’s too much religious imagery for me?  I’m not sure what exactly, i don’t care for that makes it a meh for me.  

Do What You Can (duet):  It’s a livelier, country version of the first song, and it sounds good as a duet.

Shine:  A nice ballad.  Excellent harmonies, and good guitar works. I like when artists use volume to convey importance and emotion.

Luv Can:  The sentiment of love speaking when words don’t work is a nice one.  He uses some phrases that I think he used in other songs before, so I’d like new material.  The breakdown is also kind of 1980s.  The “love is like a rolling thunder refrain” is nice, and perhaps the best portion of the song.

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.

Jason Mraz: Look for the Good Album Review

9 Dec

This is a very light, and optimistic album.  And I have an ethical dilemma about supporting a “look for the good in everyone” or “make love not war” narrative, when it’s a matter of ethics violations, suppression, human rights, and life and death, as is going on right now.  It’s the right message for a different time.  Sorry (not sorry), but this hippy-dippy $hit ain’t gonna cut it right now, and it’s a pretty privileged position to be coming from when people are literally dying in the street.  At this time, I say, Jason, read the room.

Also, not to get too down on the artist of my first concert experience, but I really dislike the genre of reggae.  So each song was judged on my opinion, rather than on it’s own merits as I usually would.  Because there’s no way I’m putting even a good reggae song on my playlist!

Thirdly, listening to reggae I do not like made me wonder if there’s some sort of listener effect (scientifically speaking) where your opinion remains consistent.  For example, because I didn’t like 2 reggae songs in a row, am I more likely to hate that third song too?  Even if it’s not raggae? And this is only broken with an extreme like of that third song?  I was wondering because of the true reggae songs, I think there were 3-4, yet I really didn’t like any of the songs that followed….

My Kind:  It has a ska thing going on that I like.  

You Do You:  This one delves past untimely messaging into cheesy territory.  Though I will say Tiffany Haddish’s part is the best thing about the entire song.

Hearing Double:  This might be a cute little song of the repeat was used more sparingly.  As is, it’s fucking annoying to hear EVERY word twice.

Gratitude:  I had this rated a “meh” but honestly, the chorus singing “meow meow meow” made me increase the rating.  I like the idea of being thankful also.

Kelsea Ballerini: Kelsea Album Review

8 Dec

Oveshare: Totally relatable by the anxious (me)

Club: I like this gal.  She’s just like me.  I can totally understand not wanting to take part in a superficial meat market with drunks who want meaningless hook-ups.

Homecoming queen?:  I like to see Ballrini normalizing the homecoming queen and showing she has the same problems as the rest of us.  Sidenote-the homecoming queen from my Senior class, was genuine and nice, lived in poverty with trashy parents, but was beautiful inside and out (like the type of beauty that catches your eye in the yearbook).  Shout-out Kimberly!

The other girl:  This one has a definite Taylor Swift catchiness to it. It addresses a cheater.  But the scarlet letter bit, though it sounds like it could be on Reputation isn’t female-positive.  WOMEN, PLEASE STOP FIGHTING WITH THE OTHER WOMAN AND START HOLDING MEN ACCOUNTABLE FOR THEIR SHITTY ACTIONS! 

Love me like a girl:  Titles are lowercase.  I am going to say it about folklore and also the Black Eyed Peas, but playing with capialization in song titles is totally annoying–and I’m not going to play (in this review).  This song is sort of a throw-away love song.  It doesn’t really SAY anything new, and it’s repetitive.

Love and hate:  The most beautiful background so far, with the strings.  I like that it could be a love song, or interpreted as a political song (that’s how I’ll take it).  It’s a nice little song.

Bragger:  Probably the edgiest song.  I like the sycopation, and the bigger beat.  The hand claps, mmm, could leave, but they’re not super-distracting.

Hold in the bottle:  I love to hear a drinking song.  Especially by a female.  Another relatable tune, but not trashy or “too.”  And the guitar is fun–like a Brad Paisley song.

Half of my hometown:  Very sentimental.  Tells a detailed and complete story.  A perfect duet–Kenny Chesney blends well and fits the song without overpowering (of course he does).

The way i used to:  A really good example of our thoughts when we’re drunk after a breakup.  So many doubts, trying to play it cool, curious about the next romantic encounter/girlfriend, but still kinda hooked.  Ballerini does a wonderful job conveying those inner thoughts out loud.

Needy:  I don’t like how the female is capitulating to the societal expectation that women can’t demand what they want in a relationship.  It’s nothing to be ashamed.  Women shouldn’t be afraid to hide who she is, or tell a man what she wants/needs.  Feminism fail.

A country song:  I like the sentiment of going back to your roots, back to your hometown, family, and friends.  And writing to cope with the good and bad.  This bridge also reminds me of Taylor Swift as it lists things faster.  

La:  She is very down to Earth about LA (an allegory for fame).  Am I using “allegory” correctly?  I like that she tells us the grittier side of fame.  Lines like, “I’ve got some famous friends that I could call, but I don’t know if I’m cool enough, and what’s worse than spending time alone, is one of them not picking up.” really show the feelings of fame, but the insecurity (that we all feel) that being famous can’t fix.

Kenny Chesney: Here and Now Album Review

8 Dec

It feels to me like Chesney knows the exact combination of elements to make a winning record.  And he’s combined them (as he always has) to make a good record.  What I’m not getting, is a lot of genuineness, authenticity, or enthusiasm for making music.  It all seems very detached and formulaic.  Also, this party guy is wearing thin, and feels a bit disingenuous to me.  I’d like to see an album with more introspective, that I can tell Chesney feels.

Beautiful World:  I thought this was a duet, and liked the layering of voices.  It’s either uncredited or Chesney layered over himself, but whichever is the case it sounds good.  I also like the sentiment of the song.

Guys Named Captain:  The song is too saccharine, but the twist at eh end is effective.  It’s the best thing about the song that it turns out it’s about Chesney’s own father.

Alicia Keys: ALICIA Album Review

7 Dec

Truth Without Love:  It has a discordant sound I don’t like.

Time Machine:  The base is the exceptional part of this song.  The chorus has a funk sound.

Authors of forever:  It’s down-tempo, and chill.

Wasted Energy:  I immediately liked the 4 count low piano note.  And I immediately didn’t like the vocalizations that followed those.  This is another track that is intentionally discordant.  The verse is sung in sharp of something, so it’s displeasing to my ear.

Underdog:  My favorite song on this album so far.  I like the marching beat, and the lyrics are truthful, yet hopeful.  It’s like a softer Phillip Phillipson.  Calypso on the bridge, make it interesting, and the “um ba doo, um ba doo, um ba um ba umba do” makes it catchy.

3 Hour Drive:  It’s a nice duet.  Not much to speak of.  More low-key songs.

Me x 7:  Women should be told more often to put themselves first.  And that it’s ok to put yourself first. 

Show Me Love:  This transported me back to 1995.  With Brandi, Monica, TLC, SWV, sexy females with a more R&B sound.  

So Done:  A song about being authentic to yourself, and not losing yourself in any relationship is one I can get behind.  The pace is super-slow, and I wish it was more interesting, but I do like the lyrics.

Gramercy Park:  A continuation of the sentiment from the last song.  She gave up who she is to be in this relationship.  Keys changed herself to be more palatable to this partner.  And now the partner found someone else–ironically nothing like what Keys created her image to be to please this person.

Love Looks Better:  The only song on this album so far that has made me excited.  The piano is a carnival here.  It’s finally got some beat, and some stuff going on, vs. the super-mello stuff prior.

You Save Me:  Quiet song.

Jill Scott:  A retro 1960s sound.  The singing reminds me of a whispering Janice Joplin.

Perfect WAy to Die:  The singing style reminds me of Keys’ prior works more than any other track on the album.  The song doesn’t capture my attention.

Good Job:  It’s always nice to hear you’re doing a good job and what you’re doing matters.  Points for positivity on this album.  It’s a good surprise after more than 3 minutes in, to find out the song is a shout out to everyone working for us in 2020:  Teachers, first responders, etc…

Three Hour Drive:  Another duet that’s nice, but not all that memorable. 

I guess the album is good, though it’s not my cup of tea, apparently.  I wanted higher energy, less slow, less chill.  But even for those who like this easy-going music, I think the album could have benefitted from some editing.  Don’t keep every song just to have a more substantial album.  Cut weak songs–even if it turns into an EP.  Or single.  

Miley Cyrus: Plastic Hearts Album Review

6 Dec

Plastic Hearts:  The song has a lot going for it:  Good beat, catchy chorus, cool guitar break-down, but Cyrus’ voice is not one of them.  It sounds a little rough-especially for her age.

Angels Like You:  I can immediately feel the emotions in the song.  Cyrus successfully conveys, sadness and regret.  I like how she addresses her shortcomings, and the media’s perspective.

Prisoner:  This is one of the best songs on the album to listen to, yet I dislike it because there’s a lot that’s formulaic and cliche’ about it.  It’s too 80s, the guitar is too, the cadence is something I’m sure I’ve heard somewhere else (“Get Physical”?).  I want to hear MILEY, not a collection of previously successful elements.

Night crawling:  This has an awesome beat, synthesizer, and of course featured artist in Billy Idol.  It’s very 80s without being cliche;.  

Midnight Sky:  I love the deep tones in this one.  Also, I think it’s pretty strong lyrically.

High:  I’m relieved this isn’t a straight up weed song, since that’s pretty much what I’ve heard of Cyrus as of late.  It’s a really nice, country-skewing song, actually.  With some of the best singing thus far on the album.  I find it pleasant that the track is stripped down from all the 80s stuff in the prior songs.

Hate Me:  It’s a good break-up song.

Bad Karma:  I really love everything about this one except the backing “uh huh-uh uh huh” which is so annoying.  The beat, and the “fuck you” lyrics are amazing, as is Joan Jett participating and the word, “heartbreaker” in the chorus.  All very bad-ass and clever.

Never Be Me:  Too quiet of a song to follow the last one.  The only good part about it is the “fire” break-down.  Needs more.

Golden G-String:  When Cyrus can’t rely on famous featured artists, the songs are a little meh.  This is a stab at an introspective quiet piece, but it’s a little flat.

Edge of Midnight:  I mean, I’m not going to stand here and critisize a mash up with Stevie Nicks-a fucking legend.  Cyrus sings her part with a lot more passion then she had in the version without  Nicks.  And obviously, Nicks is cool and awesome and amazing–though her voice is shot (and perhaps always was).

Heart of Glass:  It’s a cool, and raw rendition of that Blondie classic.  The only reason I can even tell it’s not the original is Cyrus’ accent (speech impediment?).  It’s a good job.  Maybe Cyrus should stick to covers since that’s where she seems to excel most.

Zombie:  As soon as I heard the opening beat, I immediately knew this Cranberries song.  And I thought–she better not fuck this up!  This is a sentimental favorite of mine, and I wouldn’t want to hear it damaged.  Cyrus executes it well.  I don’t care for her more growly reading of the lyrics, but the song is full of power and emotion, and cool guitar licks just as it should be.  OK, the guitar might be better in this version.  I wan’t going to add a remake to my Spotify list because obviously the original song is superior and a favorite, but now I will based on guitar.

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.

Alanis Morissette: Such Pretty Forks in the Road Album Review

6 Dec

Ablaze: I always feel intellectually elevated by Morissette’s lyrics. She uses complex words that are still accessible. This is a love song from mother to children. I like how she addresses each child, the boy and the girl, but it’s not sexist. She likes different things about them and wants different things for each, but not once is there a heteronormative view.

Reasons I Drink: This song is very catchy, and I like to see a matured, even keeled, yet still highly relatable human version of Alanis.

Diagnosis: A quiet piano-driven song with beautiful violins peppering in to evoke emotion.  I like how she’s still fiercely independent. She is saying she’s the one who has to live with this, and “…  call it what you want I don’t even care anymore.  Call me what you need to make yourself more comfortable.”  It’s such a powerful lyric and sentiment about embracing your mental status, no matter what others think or say about it.

Missing the Miracle: I don’t like how this song starts–a little too saccharine in the singing. It seems to be a poem.

Losing the Plot:  I like the darkness of this song.  The music itself has the wonderful deep bass sound that drives home the fact Morissette is digging deep emotionally and lyrically.  The piano trails off, which allows the listener to tune into the lyrics–it makes the song more thoughtful.  I also like the sentiment and word order of, “I am reaching the end of super-womaning.”  This might be one of Morissette’s best songs of her career (top 5).

Sandbox Love:  Too light for me.  It’s a little superficial musically and too optimistic(?) lyrically.  I see what she was trying to do here, but I think the song would have benefitted from more variation, and some heavier instrumentation somewhere.

Her:  I have to listen a 4th time to figure out what this song is about and what it’s saying. 

Nemesis:  Another song with darker music tones–I really like the sound she’s going toward.  

Pedestal:  I like the message and symbolism throughout this song.  And the strings are beautiful and melancholy, which fits the vibe nicely.  Now that I’m hearing a bridge, I think that’s maybe what those lighter songs I didn’t care for needed.  They needed something to break them up a little.  This bridge adds a sense of desperation, drama, and emotion.  

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.

Joan Osborne: Trouble and Strife Album Review

5 Dec

Take It Any Way I Can Get It:  Good message of female independence and chasing your goals despite haters and opposition.

What’s that You Say:  Retro and funky.

Hands Off:  Guitar is the best thing about this song.  But also I like the sentiment.

Never Get Tired (of Loving You):  How is this guitar sound made?  It’s what gives the throw-back 1980s funk vibe and the string/keyboard interlude contributes to the feeling of that era.  And the baseline is what I suppose the 1970s sounded like.

Trouble and Strife: Immediately liked the tempo of the song.  And it reminds me of a Jonny Cash song–she talks through it, but it tells a specific story.  The guitar breakdown is fun, but it would be better if it was more complex and faster.  And i liked how the guitar stepped down to end the song.

Whole Wide World:  meh.

Meat and Potatoes:  I can see what she was trying to go for here.  But it’s a lot of food metaphors for a small pay off line, “on the side” for me.  I do like the instrumentals here, very much.  In fact, even though I don’t care for the song’s lyrical content, the guitar saves the day.

Boy Dontcha Know:  A song about sexism.  It’s not quite as catchy as, “The Man” but I can appreciate Osborn’s take.  And lyrically, it goes harder than Taylor Swift.  It’s good that more and more female singers are broaching the topic of misogyny.  

That Was a Lie:  As a continuation of the last song, Osborn addresses expectations.  A winning line is, “This is how you know you finally earned your place, when there aint no difference between a mask and your face.”  Guitar sounds awesome at the end.  

Panama:  Oooh–that piano.  The hummm.  One of my favorites on the album, despite the repetitive lyrics.