Sound Opinions
Contact
Reviews
Events
Donate
About
Listen
See
Read
  
  
Sound Opinions, being the scholarly work it is, has provided footnotes to help you navigate through the show's vast maze of musical knowledge.

Because, let's face it—sometimes even we have no idea what the heck Jim and Greg are talking about.
Songs featured in this episode
Join the Mailing List
Contact Us

 


02-29-08 Footnotes
Show 118: Reviews of Michael and Janet Jackson, Erykah Badu and more, Jim’s Desert Island Jukebox pick
Listen to the MP3 Stream of this show: (link)
Download the Podcast: (Download the MP3)

1 This week music lost one of its great producers: Teo Macero. Macero is responsible for the inventive recordings of jazz great Miles Davis. Before Macero came along Davis would record what was essentially a live jazz performance. But, Macero introduced the idea of using the studio as a tool to extensively edit extended jam sessions with Davis and his fellow musicians. Artists like Radiohead and Prince are still emulating this style of recording today. To pay tribute to Teo Macero Jim and Greg play “Black Satin,” from Miles Davis’ On the Corner Sessions.

2 This season's big records are starting to be released, beginning with the 25th anniversary of one of the greatest selling albums of all time—Thriller. Michael Jackson is the latest artist to try to re-market his music to a new generation. So in addition to the original album, listeners also get remixes of his hits with artists like Will.I.AM and Kanye West. It’s an interesting concept, but neither Jim nor Greg think that any of the remixes are successful. They also agree that while Thriller is a classic, it’s not even Jackson’s best album. They give Thriller 2008 a Trash It.

3 Onto the next Jackson…Janet also has a new album out called Discipline. After listening to the S&M-inspired title track, Greg explains Janet appears to be erotica-obsessed on the entire album. He thinks she’s become more and more one-dimensional over the last decade and wouldn’t recommend anyone purchase this latest effort. Jim agrees. He doesn’t think there’s anything wrong with an adult woman exploring her sexuality, but Janet’s exploration is overdone and sad. Discipline gets two stern Trash Its.

4 Next up is This Gift, the second full-length album from Sons and Daughters. The Scottish quartet first gained attention after opening up for fellow Domino artists Franz Ferdinand. Now, with the help of producer Bernard Butler, they’ve really come into their own. Singer Adele Bethel has been moved into the position of front woman, and the updated roots sound, influenced by X, has a more pop sensibility. Jim and Greg agree that each track is a hook-filled winner. They give This Gift two Buy Its.

5 After releasing albums by Paul McCartney and Bob Dylan, Starbucks’ Hear Music label is finally putting out music by someone under 40. Sia is an Australian singer/songwriter who made a name for herself by appearing on various TV soundtracks and providing vocals to groups like Zero 7. Now she’s released her third album Some People Have More Problems. Greg is very impressed by the artist’s soulful singing, but he has major problems with her songwriting. He describes the record as a boring, overproduced, tarted-up pop record with one of the worst covers he’s ever seen. He gives the music and the art a Trash It. Jim completely disagrees and can’t believe that a Feist fan wouldn’t get Sia. He finds her lyrics to be filled with smart social commentary and gives it a Buy It.

6 Ever since 2000’s Mama’s Gun, Erykah Badu fans have been waiting for a follow-up. Jim and Greg are included in that anticipatory group. She’s finally back with New AmErykah, Pt. 1: 4th World War, but Jim and Greg warn that listeners should not expect the same sound. Badu has taken “neo-soul” to an even more neo level. Greg describes it as a murky, psychedelic sound that owes as much to Miles Davis and Herbie Hancock as it does traditional soul artists. While it’s not an easy listen, it’s worth your effort according to Greg. Jim asks the listener to imagine Badu jamming with George Clinton, Curtis Mayfield and a psychedelic band somewhere in New Orleans. If that sounds like something you’d like to hear, both hosts urge you to Buy It.

7 The final album up for debate this week is In the Future from stoner rockers Black Mountain. Jim and Greg describe the genre as something you either get or you don’t. So if you’re the type of listener to get down to the heavy, psychedelic metal sounds of bands like Kyuss and Fu Manchu, you’ll find this record to be pure, headbanging joy…at least according to Jim. Greg is also a fan, but he’s impressed with how smart the band is and how relevant their lyrics are. Whether or not you choose to pay attention to the lyrics, both critics recommend that you Buy It.

8 While Jim was home sick last week he gave some thought to great songs about fevers. He came up with “Burning For You,” by Blue Oyster Cult and decided to add it to the Desert Island Jukebox this week. Jim describes Blue Oyster Cult as the thinking man’s heavy metal band of the ‘70s. In fact, the lyrics to this song were written by rock critic Richard Meltzer. There are a number of interpretations, but for Jim it was the perfect antidote to his ills.



Songs Featured in Show #118
Miles Davis, "On the Corner," The Complete On the Corner Sessions, 2007
Miles Davis, "Black Satin," The Complete On the Corner Sessions, 2007
Michael Jackson, "Beat it," Thriller 25th Anniversary Edition, 2008
Michael Jackson, "Billie Jean," Thriller 25th Anniversary Edition, 2008
Janet Jackson, "Discipline," Discipline, 2008
Kinski, "Semaphore," Airs Above Your Station, 2003
Sons and Daughters, “This Gift,” This Gift, 2008
Sons and Daughters, “Gilt Complex,” This Gift, 2008
Sia, “Little Black Sandals,” Some People Have Real Problems, 2008
Sia, “Academia,” Some People Have Real Problems, 2008
El Guincho, “Fata Morgana,” Alegranza, 2008Erykah Badu, "Amerykahn Promise," New Amerykah, Pt. 1: 4th World War, 2008
Erykah Badu, "The Healer," New Amerykah, Pt. 1: 4th World War, 2008
Black Mountain, "Stormy High," In the Future, 2008
Black Mountain, "Tyrants," In the Future, 2008
Blue Öyster Cult, "Burnin' For You," Fire of Unknown Origin, 1981
Electric Light Orchestra, “Telephone Line,” A New World Record, 1976
The Beatles, “Here, There and Everywhere,” Revolver, 1966
Greg Sage, “Return of the Rat,” Hype! 1996
Mott the Hoople, “All the Young Dudes,” All The Young Dudes, 1972


Site Map

Main Page

The Staff / Record Reviews / Message Board / Desert Island Jukebox / Audio
About Sound Opinions / Photos / Links / Mailing List

  Contact Us
888.859.1800