kandr3s

Andrés Cárdenas

🇨🇴 Thinking out-loud about Free software, privacy, Football & Rock music.

Tags: 💿 La Discoteca


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🎵 Listened to Any Other City by Life Without Buildings

Album rating

Any Other City

Life Without Buildings

2001 · pop rock

The Spotify algorithm added a different track from Any Other City by Life Without Buildings on every “Discover Weekly” playlist of mine for a month straight so I decided to give the whole record a listen and it was as if I have heard it a bunch of times already. It’s the trademark alt/indie-rock sound, the spoken word passages and even rapping attempts, maybe this was it in the early 2000’s, but 2 decades later it feels as if everyone has done it.

I did listen to it a couple more times though because it is extremely catchy and there are absolute gems on the record: “PS Exclusive”, “The Leanover” and my favorite “Let’s Get Out” with its…

“Ting ting, look around… just information!”

Patti Smith and Lenny Kaye vibes all the way.

One thing I was surprised to discover is how the band Dry Cleaning sounds like a “tone-down” version of this that’s actually currently touring. Make sure to check them out too.

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🎵 Listened to Nightclubbing by Grace Jones

Album rating

Nightclubbing

Grace Jones

1981 · art pop

The main goal of the listening journal was from the beginning to expose myself to new music and while I knew of Grace Jones and her transition from model to recording artist, I never actually listened to her music. Let alone expect it to be so good. The songs on Nightclubbing are as smooth as they come.

Yes, it borrows from a lot of places, but it creates a slick aesthetic. There’s something incredibly visual about this album. Perhaps it’s the iconic album cover, or is it Jones’ monotonous voice? I don’t know but where Marianne Faithful went heartbroken, Jones went with the catchy hooks. And where Iggy Pop went dark and gloomy, Jones went crazy with the effects.

It is one of those albums that just lives in a world of its own.

Updated: 2023-05-11

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🎵 Listened to Carsick Cars by Carsick Cars

Album rating

Carsick Cars

Carsick Cars

2007 · rock

Today marks a month since I last updated the Listening Journal. The goal was to listen and post about a new album every week. I’ve done the listening part since the beginning of the year but I fell behind with the writing. Today I’m attempting to catch up.

I am not sure how I first came across Carsick Cars, but from the moment I listened to their break out song Zhong Nan Hai this trio of Chinese Rockers have been blasting on my speakers almost every single day. It’s not common for me to overplay singles but I am guilty of that on this case.

So I decided to check the full album and found out they wear the spirit of Rock’n’Roll on their sleeves and even toured with Sonic Youth. I couldn’t praise the simplicity, energy and passion these guys bring to their performances more, but such a limited “color palette” gets old pretty quick.

So while I wouldn’t recommend the album I’ll keep coming back to their amazing live performances like this one: You Can Listen, You Can Talk.

Updated: 2023-03-28

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🎵 Listened to Link Wray's self-titled album

Album rating

Link Wray

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1971 · country

By the time this self-titled album was released in 1971, Link Wray, of Shawnee roots, have had his breakthrough instrumental “Rumble” banned from radio, gone through one or two odysseys running for his life escaping the Ku Klux Klan, had one of his lungs removed after serving in the Korean War and of course, had been credited with inventing the power chord.

On this album he brings the sound that built his reputation as a raw, bluesy, and hard-hitting rock ’n’ roller and mixes it flawlessly with a bunch of Americana styles, including some “preachy” bits that perhaps did the man no favors as the album didn’t do well commercially or critically.

But the same soulful displays in songs like God Out West and Ice People are what I personally enjoy the most, the whole album and Link Wray’s catalog leave me wondering: Why isn’t the work of such a legendary figure in Rock more recognized?

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🎵 Listened to Praise a Lord Who Chews but Which Does Not Consume; (Or Simply Hot Between Worlds) by Yves Tumor

Album rating

Praise a Lord Who Chews but Which Does Not Consume; (Or Simply Hot Between Worlds)

Yves Tumor

2023 · neo-psych

When I first listened to Yves Tumor’s Gospel For a New Century I was fascinated. And then the album turned out to be a beautiful, emotional and passionate record that showcased many influences and an aesthetic craftsmanship in blending them all together in a way that felt completely the artist’s.

I loved “Heaven to A Tortured Mind” but also thought there was an “unfinished air” to it. I thought at times the melodies felt more like vignettes than finished songs. But my excitement for whatever Sean Bowie did next was such I’ve been quietly waiting for Praise a Lord Who Chews but Which Does Not Consume; (Or Simply Hot Between Worlds).

And oh my, have they delivered?! A must-listen.

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🎵 Listened to Big Science by Laurie Anderson

Album rating

Big Science

Laurie Anderson

1982 · art pop

Wow.

I was initially familiar with “O Superman” which is undoubtedly the standout track, but the rest of the album is just as sonically intriguing. I didn’t expect to come across an absolute classic that effortlessly transports to an otherworldly soundscape.

Armed with a vocoder, her hypnotic spoken-word poetry and just the right amount of electronic instrumentation, Laurie Anderson’s philosophical musings on topics ranging from technology to sexuality, remain relevant as Big Science contemplates the nature of reality and identity.

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🎵 Listened to The Money Store by Death Grips

Album rating

The Money Store

Death Grips

2012 · hip hop

I’m not sure if it’s that I just don’t get this or it simply doesn’t resonates with me, but I just don’t get it 🤷🏽‍♂️ (yet)

I’ve Seen Footage actually reminded me of The Northern Boys’ viral hit Party Time, for example. As someone slowly trying to make his way into Hip Hop I can’t say whether this will stand the test of time sonically. As for the lyrics they already sound dated. Perhaps this is one of those albums that require a specific “mindset” which I lack at the moment? I feel like there’s nothing I can say about it. I was supposed to choose between this and The Roots’ Phrenology. Perhaps I chose incorrectly.

But you never know, maybe eventually this will click for me, who knows? I remember not finding My Bloody Valentine’s Loveless particularly good the first few listens and now I consider it a perfect album. And there are not many of those around. So, for the time being I couldn’t recommend The Money Store but some day I will?

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🎵 Listened to This Stupid World by Yo La Tengo

Album rating

This Stupid World

Yo La Tengo

2023 · art rock

What can be said about a band that’s consistently released solid records over the last 3 decades that hasn’t been said already?

Yo La Tengo prove once again that the Rock N’ Roll formula just works. No bells nor whistles, keep it simple, bring it the passion, spread some catchy guitar hooks here and there and you’re all set.

Opening their most recent album is “Sinatra Drive Breakdown” that most definitely takes me back to the softer bits of The Velvets’ masterpiece “Sister Ray” while “Apology Letter” feels like a nod to the Loaded years.

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🎵 Listened to Let's Start Here. by Lil Yachty

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Let's Start Here.

Lil Yachty

2023 · neo-psych

I first became aware of Lil Yachty most recent album on r/LetsTalkMusic all I read into it was “rapper goes rock” and I wasn’t very interested, then Fantano’s review showed up in my feeds and I still didn’t bother to watch it really, it was until read J. Hubner’s blog post that I became interested. Here’s a snippet:

So when my 19-year old daughter texted me over the weekend and asked if I’d heard the new Lil Yachty album, my initial reaction was “Huh?” But instead, I replied “Well, I’ve heard of him.” So she proceeded to tell me to give it a listen as she thought I’d like it. Given that I’ve bestowed many musical recommendations to my kids over the last few years(with many even sticking) I figured I’d at least give it a cursory spin just to say I listened. What I found, to my surprise, was that Lil Yachty’s new album Let’s Start Here. is pretty great.

Complex Distractions.

To get it right out of the way: it uses a bit too much Auto-Tune for my liking, that’s my biggest complaint of the album and the one aspect that makes the second part of the record exhausting to get through.

A comment I’ve seen thrown around a couple of times is that the opening track “the BLACK seminole.” is the sequel to The Great Gig in the Sky and that is a perfect description. I also mentioned it’s the kind of song Waters wishes he’d come up with these days.

Lil Yachty has crafted a tremendous homage to the bands of yore with an amazing blend of Rock and Rap that appeals to music fans across 3 generations. With everything being niche nowadays that’s a win anywhere.

It comes as a (non) surprise that Mac DeMarco and MGMT’s Benjamin Goldwasser are part of a long list of collaborators for this project, particularly in “drive ME crazy!” where the pair brought in their psych pop baggage adding to the many flavours of Let’s Start Here.

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🎵 Listened to Dangerous Acquaintances by Marianne Faithfull

Album rating

Dangerous Acquaintances

Marianne Faithfull

1981 · art pop

Other than Nico’s studio albums, a couple of Patti Smith and Joni Mitchell records I can’t barely think of any women in my music collection. I think the main reason for this is that since I came from a vocal music background I used to pay too much attention to lyrics and it being a woman perspective, female vocalists didn’t really click for me.

So I guess one could say my music collection is mostly a sausage party, but I really want to remedy it though. So during this  year-long journey one of the albums chosen each month will feature a woman. 

This week I’ve been listening to this Marianne Faithfull album because she’s one of the few women already in my music collection. I think it’s safe to say that Faithfull developed her style with 1979’s Broken English, the quintessential heartbroken woman album.

Dangerous Acquaintances is the follow-up record. It retains the laid-back and easy-going flow, the guitars seem to have gone a bit catchier and even though Marianne’s voice still shows a broken woman in search of new beginnings as heard on “Sweetheart” and “Tenderness”, it’s lacking the gut-punching lyricism of the previous album. So while enjoyed this album I would suggest newcomers start with Broken English.

Andrés Cárdenas