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Played This Week

July 31, 2009

Dirty ProjectorsBitte Orca: This is pretty undeniable stuff. Of course, I’ve been late to hear it, and until now I’d heard a lot of good things about it, which raised my interest in, but also suspicion of it. Finally hearing the whole thing though, it is really good. It gets the balance between catchy and intentionally obtuse right, and with all the interesting arrangements, guitar and vocal work going on, it definitely deserves the praise it’s been getting. It’s bands like this which illustrate the distance between the indie world and the mainstream sometimes, insofar as everywhere you look, this album is getting great reviews and people seem really into it, but, it’s not likely that it’ll catch on with a bigger audience. Certainly a record to check out if you haven’t heard it, though.

***

Sonic Youth – The Eternal: Another record it’s taken me a while to finally listen to, and even though the responses to this one have been mixed, it doesn’t do anything wrong. There’s been a sound shift on this record, which can be heard throughout. The vocals, for one, sound quite melodic, with more harmonies used. The bass too, as Mark Ibold’s playing sits in the songs differently than Kim Gordon’s did, adding a new character. Some big riffs, some dissonance, and Steve Shelley pounding along steadily in the back, it’s all here. It’s no doubt one of the more direct rock records they’ve ever done. The title makes more sense the more you listen, too, as many elements of the Sonic Youth edifice are present, adapted once again into something new, but familiar.

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