If you love music and can remember escaping in a new album or listening to your old favorites, then why not do that on a record player?
We have got so used to the perfection of digital sound and the rush of our busy day, that we have forgotten what it’s like to appreciate the depth of sound and the patience of enjoying an album cover to cover.
Get yourself a drink, put the needle on that record, sit down and enjoy.
Artist – Miley Cyrus
Album – Younger Now
Released October 2017
Genre – Pop & Country and Western I think
Well I was surprised this wasn’t the usual pop diarrhoea I was expecting. I read that this was probably her best album, well that means the rest must have been really bad.
This album has so many ups and downs, it just doesn’t flow. The good tracks like Younger Now, Malibu, Week Without you, Thinkin and Bad Mood clearly stand out by a country and western mile (see what I did there). She actually has a Stevie Nicks style about her music. Its just as shame because the other songs just drag on tediously through the album. The track Rainbowland featuring Dolly Parton is just awful, that’s 4 minutes 25 minutes of my life I’ll never get back.
Favourite tracks: Younger Now, Malibu, Week Without you, Thinkin and Bad Mood
Worse tracks: Rainbowland
Marks out of five: 2½
Food/Drink to have while listening: Curly Wurly because that’s how the album goes
Artist – Wolfheart
Album – Tyhjyys (apparently ‘Emptiness’ in Finnish)
Released – Mar 2017
Genre – Thrash Metal
All Justin Bieber fans move on, don’t even attempt the listen to this album.
It’s been a long time since I listened to any thrash metal and not a lot has changed. When I started listening more than 30 years ago I hated the annoying pointless grungy roaring vocals. The youth would tell you, listen to the passion and feel the power in the voice dude, ‘what a load of old crap‘, it was ridiculous and made no sense then and it still doesn’t. I’m sure the vocalist Tuomas Saukkonen thinks he’s talented, it’s such a shame because musically wise the band are good. I enjoyed listening to the riffs and the introduction of other instruments such as the flute on track 4 The Flood. However, the problem was just as I was enjoying the music, Mr. Saukkonen pops up and ruins the song. I think the band seriously should consider getting rid of the singer and replacing him with a garbage disposal unit; the vocals would be the same.
Favourite tracks: Shores of the Lake Simpele, The Flood (until the annoying vocalist)
Worse track: Any with the vocalist, a real shame because I quite liked the music
Marks out of five: 3 for the music
Food/Drink to have while listening: Marmite because you’ll either love it or hate it.
Artist – Fleetwood Mac
Album – Rumours
Released Feb 1977
It’s hard to believe this was 40 years and Fleetwood Macs 11th Studio Album, almost a decade since they made their debut.
I first remember hearing this album in my sister’s clothing boutique shop in Coventry, England (who’s clientele included Kevin Keegan, but that’s not important to this review!) Whenever I went into the shop these songs just blew me away. Every single song on the album could’ve been a chart topper. I remember school friends only talking about Fleetwood Mac once the song “The Chain” was used by Formula 1 for their programme, and still is to this day. As I get older and read more about the band and looking at the inside sleeve of the vinyl LP seeing their smiley faces, you do wonder how this album ever got made; with them all bickering and bonking each other. But it was made, and if you’ve never heard the album before take a listen, preferably on vinyl and I guarantee it will become one of the best albums you have ever heard (assuming you like real music). Great melodies, simple lyrics and just good songs.
Favourite tracks: Trust me the whole album is brilliant
Worse track: Absolutely not a single one
Marks out of five: 5
Food/Drink to have while listening: Whatever you like……… just sit back turn your phone off (yes, I said OFF)
Artist – Foo Fighters
Album – Concrete and Gold
Released Sept 2017
Foo Fighters to me have always been an OK band but this album blew the “Foo”k out of me. Throughout the album you can hear so many musical influences; track 9 – Sunday Rain, wouldn’t be out-of-place on the Beatles white album, to track 5 – La Dee Da, which if that’s not a Led Zeppelin riff going on in the background then I’m a monkeys uncle. And while we’re on it track 11 Concrete and Gold, well that is so Pink Floyd.
And the fact that Foo Fighters released also on vinyl….. gets two big Simon Cowell like thumbs up from me.
Favourite tracks: Sunday Rain, La Dee Dad, Concrete and Gold
Worse track: None
Marks out of five: 5
Food/Drink to have while listening: Beer screw the food
Artist – Dua Lipa
Album – Dua Lipa
Released June 2017
This week reviews Dua Lipa, which is quite a cool name. I’m not saying that the record company took one look at her and thought she will look great in the videos, but…..
The album will be great for its target market of the under 12’s.
The vocals are ok, verging on annoying in places. The track lost in your light has some funky 70’s style beat and is easily the best track on the album. The rest is tolerable pop music; sentimental clap trap.
Favourite tracks: Lost in your light
Worse tracks: Choose from any after track 10
Marks out of five: 2¼ (¼ is for a cool name)
Food/Drink to have while listening: Bubblegum and Diet Coke
Getting back to vinyl feels right. Hardly opening one of my thousands of cd’s these days. Although, I am still a bit addicted to iTunes and my wireless speaker. But let me tell you, the smell of records, the process of opening that sleeve and lifting the needle, listening to tracks in the order they were intended to be played, reading the album cover to cover and the depth of sound…. is magic.
If this is what ageing is all about; bring it on!
In this blog I will be reviewing albums in a short, sharp, funny and sometimes grumpy manner. Hope you will enjoy reading. All recommendations welcome.