Wednesday, September 2, 2009

New Column: Nothing In Common

I can't believe it's been another week already. I have four or five First Listen posts ready to go, but just haven't found the time to scribble them down. I need to make a better effort here.

Anyway, I am keeping up with my regular gig at This week's missive contains my thoughts on three very diverse albums: Owl City's one-man electronic poptopia Ocean Eyes, Mew's towering weird-prog excursion No More Stories Are Told Today I'm Sorry They Washed Away No More Stories The World is Grey I'm Sorry They Washed Away, and David Mead's wonderful acoustic love letter Almost and Always. These three have absolutely nothing in common (hence the column title), except for the fact that I really like them all.

Click on over to read, then come back here to post comments.


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  2. If money's an issue on the Beatles remasters, maybe you should do one or two per month.

  3. Hey Kevin,

    Believe it or not, that wouldn't work out for me financially. The big box set is about $170. The albums individually are $14, except for the White Album and Past Masters, which are $20. (On average.) That'd be $195 or so for the albums one at a time, and I wouldn't get the bonus DVD. It's weird, but dropping the $170 all at once is actually the better deal. And yes, it's strange being me.

  4. A Bazan/Imogen Heap column would be awesome.

    I bought all three of Mew's albums a couple weeks ago, as I planned to do when the new one released, and have been listening to them all as one piece, Frengers-Kites-No More Stories.... and I love them. Why Mew still isn't quite breaking out huge in the indie scene is beyond me. Maybe it is the cover art. But I kind of love that about them. So epic, yet they tend to get a little overlooked nonetheless. Makes them feel like they're still "your personal band", right?

  5. Hey Jonathan,

    I've heard Mew described as baffling, and I think they confuse at least as many people as they charm. That's probably why they haven't broken bigger. Also, Frengers, Kites and No More Stories are their third, fourth and fifth albums, respectively - the first two have not been released in the U.S., as far as I know. That makes it harder for me to think of them as my "personal band" - I was late to the party, and I don't know their roots.

    Bazan and Heap reviews are coming. I really liked Imogen's album. Back and forth on David's. You?

  6. I think Bazan's album is very good. It seemed a little lightweight at first, but the lyrics drew me in. After more listens I've grown really fond of almost the whole thing. There's a touch of nearly every project he's done in the past here, and personally I feel these are his most honest and heartfelt lyrics he's written yet. One or two songs I feel a little blasé about, the title-track is one.

    I like Imogen's album too. Her style of singing and lyrics content feels a little generic for my tastes, but she's got such a talent for great pop craftsmanship, I can let go and just enjoy it anyway. She's sort of in the same category as Coldplay for me, artists I would not normally care about but find myself enjoying a lot anyway.