Tuesday, August 7, 2007

I've heard it all before...or have I???

Thought I should mention projects to look forward to in the second half of 2007 that might be worth searching out. The jury is still out on the quality of these offerings, but their names have been bandied about, nonetheless (this is just a taste):

Madonna-I confess...
Kylie-welcome home.
Siouxsie-ruler of them all.
Goldfrapp-cannot wait...
M.I.A.-break the mold!
Roisin Murphy-utterly fabulous
KT Tunstall-what a sweet girl & talented to boot
Duran Duran-c'mon guys, it's your last chance. If Timbaland can't help you...
Annie Lennox-more fun than Bare, I hope.
Dido-should be very interesting with Jon Brion on board.
Hard-fi-the single is OK, so hopefully good.
PJ Harvey-always a surprise
VHS or Beta-sounds promising...
BWO-single is great, and hopefully much better than Halcyon Days.
The Cure-worrisome without keyboards. Is Robert Smith losing it?
Hot Hot Heat-single is great-these guys are good fun.
Dot Allison-intriguing
Darren Hayes-surprisingly intriguing from a pop perspective
Dave Gahan (Depeche Mode)-liked the last one, but really wanted another Depeche record...
Junior Senior (for the US/UK)-party CD of the year?
Martina Topley-Bird-sublime and haunting...more please...
Babyshambles-can you get it together Pete??
British Sea Power-hopefully a bit darker than the last effort
Dexy's Midnight Runners (22 years!)-Kevin Rowland, is your head on straight?
the Prodigy (with lead singers back)-Hallelujah!
R.E.M. (rocking again)-we'll see...Monster, anyone?

early 2008...supposedly:

Basement Jaxx-with Yoko Ono! Paging Grace Jones...
Shirley Manson-sorely underrated rock goddess goes solo
Annie-where have you been?
Massive Attack-SO long between albums, but Live With Me could suffice for a while...
Belle & Sebastian-Camera Obscura is on your heels...
Franz Ferdinand-Can't wait to see where they go next...
Coldplay-oh well, they had to work with Eno eventually.
Underworld-why so long? 4-5 years and the whole world changes...
Radiohead-does Thom Yorke have another solo record complete & ready to go?
Nine Inch Nails (part 2)-Part 1 was excellent.
Divine Comedy-always love Neil, and would take just about anything.
U2-Paging Bono...
Moby-supposedly dance-y. Hurrah!

artists that have mentioned recording, but where are they in the process?:

Saint Etienne-just did a big show in the UK, but is there an album coming?
Guillemots-fantastic Mercury Prize nominated, but very quiet in the US
Doves-??? (how long does it take?)
Peter Gabriel-always working, rarely releasing
ABC-they say it's done-where is it? 10 years is a long time to wait...
Portishead-what did I just say about 10 years? Especially when you only had 2 CDs...
Neneh Cherry-stalled? maybe nobody cares??
Morrissey-on tour & always recording it seems, new deal with Warner in the works?
Daft Punk-played Lollapalooza, but where is the album to erase Human After All?
OMD-touring and recording (hopefully). This could be inspiring...
Avalanches-has it been that long?
Michael Jackson-seemingly always in the studio somewhere...do we care anymore?
Courtney Love-scarifying.
Roxy Music-you have been promising this for 3 years now. 26 years since Avalon. Do we care?

where are they now???:

Fiona Apple-one internet sensation and then...disappears for long periods...
Kate Bush-one double CD in 12 years, she says she doesn't want to wait so long...time is ticking
Human League-say they'll never record again after Secrets (their best) tanked--a shame
Jem-Dido soundalike--maybe she sounds too much like Dido?--trying to fix that??
Mark Hollis-MIA
Boy George-what a mess...can he prove he was a major talent again?
Terry Hall-longer and longer gaps, his discography is all over the map
Ian Broudie/Lightning Seeds-very quiet for a while (including solo)--we want you BACK!
Tears for Fears-Curt did a quiet solo CD...where's Roland? Thought you were back together??
the The-Matt hasn't made a classic in 15 years. Such immense talent--where are you??
Yello-usually pretty quiet anyway
David Sylvian-even quieter. 9 Horses was good, and he's touring. A solo in the works???
David Bowie-heart attacks can really slow you down. Been a while though. Where's an album?
Toni Halliday-Curve split & the Killers called. Any chance of solo, as you are married to a millionaire?
Elizabeth Fraser-great on the Massive Attack tour, but no solo Liz or Cocteau in 10 years? 2long
the Sundays-these guys just disappeared...where are they now?
Siobhan Fahey-promises of solo stuff, but few deliveries. Singles were great, where's the CD?
New Order-may be a while with all the fighting
The Darkness-Justin out of rehab yet?

A quick rundown of what to expect and what never to expect, apparantly.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Win some, lose some...

I have been thinking of following up my original post with an "upgrade/downgrade" list of other titles that have been released this year. These are reflections of my opinions, yet I hope that they can help you (the reader) put things in perspective when considering what to spend your hard earned cash on. So, here's the list:

UPGRADE (I enjoy these very much, and they are definte leaps in quality over previous efforts):

The Cribs
Tracey Thorn
Sophie Ellis-Bextor
Siobhan Donaghy
Peter, Bjorn & John
The Pierces
Kim Wilde
The Rosebuds
White Stripes
LCD Soundsystem
Groove Armada
Sarah Nixey
Modest Mouse
The National

(other great albums from artists without previous track records):

The Bird & the Bee
The Fratellis
The Good, the Bad, and the Queen
The Pipettes
The Long Blondes
Kate Havnevik
Charlotte Gainsbourg
The Mary Onettes
Mark Ronson
St. Vincent
The View
A Fine Frenzy

OK... (Neither upgrade nor downgrade, just pleasantly good):

Tori Amos
Marc Almond
Rufus Wainwright
Jarvis Cocker
Maximo Park
The Editors
Bloc Party
Suzanne Vega
Chemical Brothers
Keren Ann
Crowded House
Art Brut
Maroon 5
Kaiser Chiefs
Polyphonic Spree
Sondre Lerche
Kings of Leon
Apples in Stereo
Blonde Redhead
Astrid Williamson
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club

(and others from new artists that were OK):

Au Revoir Simone
The Cinematics
Paolo Nutini
The Klaxons
The Feeling
Calvin Harris
Daniel Agust

DOWNGRADE (artists who have done better with previous efforts):

Sinead O'Connor
Dolores O'Riordan
Bryan Ferry
The Stooges
Clap Your Hands Say Yeah
Paula Cole
The Bravery
Joseph Arthur
Fountains of Wayne
Brett Anderson
The Magic Numbers
Marilyn Manson
Avril Lavigne
Kelly Clarkson
Mandy Moore

I could go into specifics, but for now, this will have to do. Some of these may end up on the best/worst list at the close of 2007, and more will be explained then. For now, feel free to soak it in. Thanks for reading!