Don’t Waste Your Time or Time Will Waste You

Some of my co-workers and I started sharing some of our favorite music. We’ve been doing it for a while, but now we’re actually reviewing them and sharing those reviews with one another. So here are the two albums that were suggested to me this week.

A note on how I rate things. One star means I don’t think it qualifies as music. Five stars mean I wish I wrote the thing. Most music for me is a three.

Muse – Black Holes and Revelations (2006)

I got into Muse after this album came out. But before all the Twilight fans became Muse fans because one of their songs was in the first movie.

I really got into this and their next album. They are all great musicians and they can write some pretty good songs. I used to love them.

Used to.

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I’ve Had Enough of Your Tainted Love

I work in my company’s marketing department. We also take care of PR and most internal communications. In an article in our most recent company news magazine, one of my coworkers made allusions to a song I had honestly never heard before: Pharrell Williams’ Happy. Apparently it’s a huge hit.

So of course our friend Weird Al has made a parody of it on his newest album. And it’s tacky.

No really, that’s the name of the song, Tacky.

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I Got My Mind Made Up

Some of my co-workers and I started sharing some of our favorite music. We’ve been doing it for a while, but now we’re actually reviewing them and sharing those reviews with one another.

As some of you may know, I play music. So when I listen to music, much of the time I listen for things to try, to push my skills and make me better. There are some musicians – like Chris Thile – who are so good, I get discouraged that I’ll ever be that good. One of those musicians is Django Reinhardt on guitar.

The man was born to gypsies and grew up on the streets of Paris. When he was a young man, he got caught in a fire and burned his ring and pinky finger on his left hand. But he didn’t let that hold him back from his playing. Not only did he invent and pioneer gypsy jazz as a genre, but using only his first and middle finger, he is still a better – and faster – guitar player than 99 percent of the guitarists I’ve heard. Just watch 20 seconds of this and you’ll understand what I mean:

 

He died in ’53, so pretty much all of his work was singles; before recording musicians thought of albums as anything more than collections, like greatest hits. Since it would be hard to make sure my coworkers – who use a random assortment of iTunes, Spotify and Google Play - all listen to the right album, I’m going to share a different artist who has albums like we tend to think of them, but I couldn’t let Django go unmentioned.

Before we get to my coworkers’ suggestions, though, this is one of my favorite Django Reinhardt songs. He led a jazz group for 14 year called le Quintette du Hot Club de France with violinist Stéphane Grappelli. Here’s a collaboration between the Quintet and singer Beryl Davis called Undecided:

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Just Livin’ Up my Dreams

Some of my co-workers and I started sharing some of our favorite music. We’ve been doing it for a while, but now we’re actually reviewing them and sharing those reviews with one another. So here are the four albums that were suggested to me this week.

A note on how I rate things. One star means I don’t think it qualifies as music. Five stars mean I wish I wrote the thing. Most music for me is a three.

Living Colour – Vivid (1988)

My first thought was that this is not at all what I was expecting. Frankly, I thought I wouldn’t like it as much as I do. Only Open Letter (To a Landlord) had elements of what I was expecting, but it also had some face-melting guitar and a steady groove.

Second, I thought I’ve heard this before, even though I know I haven’t. It took me a couple of days to realize these guys are the less manic precursors to Them Crooked Vultures. The opening track especially reminded me of the Led Zeppelin-Foo Fighters-Queens of the Stone Age supergroup’s Elephants.

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That Funny Feelin’ Again Winding Me Up Inside

Some of my co-workers and I started sharing some of our favorite music. We’ve been doing it for a while, but now we’re actually reviewing them and sharing those reviews with one another. So here are the four albums that were suggested to me this week.

A note on how I rate things. One star means I don’t think it qualifies as music. Five stars mean I wish I wrote the thing. Most music for me is a three.

Kiss – Destroyer (1976)

When my coworker shared this, he acknowledged the fact that this might not be Kiss’ best album, but it is one that he really loves.

I’ve never actually listened to a whole Kiss record. I’ve only ever heard their hits on the radio from time to time. Continue reading

Everybody Got to Deviate from the Norm

Some of my co-workers and I started sharing some of our favorite music. We’ve been doing it for a while, but now we’re actually reviewing them and sharing those reviews with one another. So here are the four albums that were suggested to me this week.

A note on how I rate things. One star means I don’t think it qualifies as music. Five stars mean I wish I wrote the thing. Most music for me is a three.

Gorillaz – Demon Days (2005)

Anyone who knows me knows that I don’t really like the Gorillaz. I feel like they’re the epitome of over-produced music. I’d take organic mistakes any day. Obviously, a polished performance is better than a garage band who has jammed together once. But, I’m putting my prejudices aside and giving this album an honest listen. Continue reading

Is it Me You’re Looking For?

Some of my co-workers and I started sharing some of our favorite music. We’ve been doing it for a while, but now we’re actually reviewing them and sharing those reviews with one another. So here are the two albums that were suggested to me this week.

A note on how I rate things. One star means I don’t think it qualifies as music. Five stars mean I wish I wrote the thing. Most music for me is a three.

Savage Garden – Affirmation (1999)

First let me say that I don’t know that I’ve ever actually heard Savage Garden. One of my friends was in a band that covered the title track off this album. I really like both versions, but for different reasons. And as I listened to the original, I think my friend’s band changed some of the words; some of the things Savage Garden say aren’t what my friend and his band mates believe, so I think they changed the words to match their own beliefs. Continue reading