Chris Bell – I Am The Cosmos

★★☆☆☆ = Eh, fine

What’s it sound like?

Straightforward 70s pop-rock like big star.

Thoughts
A little soft lyrically, his natural whine a bit off-putting. Rockier numbers like ‘I got kinda lost’ are great.

Felt it was missing something, guess Alex Chilton is needed.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Chris-Bell-I-Am-The-Cosmos/release/713533

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Chris Bell – I Am The Cosmos

Description: Album Review of Chris Bell – I Am The Cosmos


Rating: 2 out of 5

 

Linda Perhacs – Parallelograms

★★★☆☆ = Good!

What’s it sound like?
60/70s folk. It’s described as psychedelic folk, maybe a bit spooky but this feels pretty pure especially when compared with today’s genres.

Thoughts
A classic folk record. Folk only goes so deep for me but this is well crafted music.

She’s got a pleasant singing voice, engaging and honest. There’s a captivating quality that reminds me of Nick Drake’s softness. Guitar is high in the mix and lifts her voice. Songwriting is impeccable with memorable melodies and lyrics. Any fans of the genre should seek this out.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Linda-Perhacs-Parallelograms/release/1373131

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Linda Perhacs – Parallelograms

Description: Album Review of Linda Perhacs – Parallelograms


Rating: 3 out of 5

 

It’s A Beautiful Day – Live At The Fillmore ’68

★★☆☆☆ = Eh, fine

What’s it sound like?
Lively 60s rock band (think dead and the band) with strings.

Thoughts
It’s OK but overall they aren’t up to their peers. I think this would’ve been a blast live but doesn’t hold up to the test of time.

More Info
https://www.discogs.com/Its-A-Beautiful-Day-Live-At-The-Fillmore-68/release/6294763

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It’s A Beautiful Day – Live At The Fillmore ’68

Description: Album Review of It’s A Beautiful Day – Live At The Fillmore ’68


Rating: 2 out of 5

 

Pinegrove – Everything So Far

★★★★★ = Classic, essential listening

What’s it sound like?
Alt rock, has a 90s vibe to it.

Thoughts
Personal favorite band of mine. The songwriting can get repetitive but there’s a heartfelt sincerity that’s created in their music. The lyrics are key to this feeling, he sings with an uncertainty that illustrates a mature approach to life. I hear someone taking experiences as they come, learning and sharing them.

On this collection you hear the band evolving over a couple of albums. The earlier stuff, featured on the later half, is maybe a bit more drawn out, lyrics expanded and unrefined. It’s as if an epiphany is explored musically. I find the newer material is a bit more polished and crafted into some very memorable songs. If you like the band then this is a must have.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Pinegrove-Everything-So-Far-/release/10175309

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Pinegrove – Everything So Far

Description: Album Review of Pinegrove – Everything So Far


Rating: 5 out of 5

 

Pinegrove – Cardinal

★★★★★ = Classic, essential listening

What’s it sound like?
Young alt rock band with personal exploratory singing.

Thoughts
Pinegrove is one of my favorite new finds over the past few years. Something about this band really just clicks for me. Maybe it’s the familiarity of the chord driven songs with lyrics that I connect with. Either way they’re entire catalog has gotten repeat listens and is a+.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Pinegrove-Cardinal/release/8117868

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Pinegrove – Cardinal

Description: Album Review of Pinegrove – Cardinal


Rating: 5 out of 5

 

Bill Callahan – Sometimes I Wish We Were An Eagle

★★★★☆ = Quality release and suggested listening

What’s it sound like?

Singer songwriter with a full band and string arrangements. Fantastic voice. He’s got a somber / sober style, this is the kind of album you’d turn on after a dramatic breakup that took all weekend and now you’re walking in the park on a nice autumn day and you just wanna hear something grounding so you turn this on and you realize it’s gonna be ok. The world keeps turning.

Thoughts
I’ve been meaning to listen to this guy since he’s been a favorite of Mark Richardson. I’m impressed. The music is beautiful for a style I wouldn’t typically listen to. His lyrics are spot on and share a wealth of knowledge. I plan to visit more.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Bill-Callahan-Sometimes-I-Wish-We-Were-An-Eagle/release/1728088

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Nico – Chelsea Girl

★★★★☆ = Quality release and suggested listening

What’s it sound like?

Folksy 60s new York singer songwriter with dramatic string arrangements. No bass or percussion, Nico’s distinct voice is at the center of it all, singing lyrics about friends, life, change, stories of new york (especially convincing considering she didn’t write any of the lyrics).

I like the dark textures of ‘it was a pleasure then’, an electric guitar is employed to do general noodling and effects before breaking into some dissonant soundscape. It’s particularly effective given the album had been entirely acoustic.

Thoughts

This album has aged very well. Nico’s nonchalant character feels very New York and the album carries a feeling of walking around the city. Her vocal range is limited but her distinct masculinity is appealing.

I see this continuing to have a ‘cool’ appeal for future listeners through her association with the velvet underground. My only previous exposure to Nico was on the VU’s debut, surprised to know a number of the singles.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Nico-Chelsea-Girl/release/2443457

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Campfire Songs – Campfire Songs

★★★★☆ = Quality release and suggested listening

What’s it sound like?

Avantgarde campfire sing-along

Thoughts

An album to get lost in and wonderful introduction to the band. Animal Collective’s early trademark strummed guitars and chant like vocals are the core of the album. The sound is defined by it’s lo-fi recording technique that somehow provides both a boxed in but outside. An ode to the human experience of singing together, it definitely has the effect of transporting you to the moment.

I’d like to include this as part of my piece about our ‘desire to be outside’ and how self mythology strives for this.

More Info

https://www.discogs.com/Campfire-Songs-Campfire-Songs/release/475021

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