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Played This Week

July 3, 2009

Mos Def – The Ecstatic: I was thinking about doing a proper review for this one, but it’s being reviewed everywhere and all the reviews basically amount to the same thing: Mos is back in fine form, and this is an excellent record. I can’t really say anything that hasn’t been said already, but Mos always brings lots of charisma and cool, and he sounds fab over top of the great production here. It’s an eclectic record, with lots of groovy international sounds going on. There’s an international sensibility to the entire thing, really, and it’s a step above. Definitely worth checking out.

*****

Jason Molina – Pyramid Electric Co.: This came out not long after the final Songs: Ohia record (2003’s Magnolia Electric Co.), and was Molina’s first release credited to his actual name. The two Electric Co. records couldn’t be further apart, and where Magnolia went full-band rock, this one went stripped-down singer/songwriter. It’s just Molina in a room, very sparse and plaintive. It’s a lonely record, and it doesn’t rush, requiring you to take time and listen to it. Like his other solo album, this one is only available on LP (with a CD version included), but it is on iTunes. Not one of his best-known releases, but a real gem.

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