Album reviews 9/7/21

DJ SS Presents- Bass Sea: Drum & Bass Sounds of the Summer: I think I alluded to listening to a lot of drum & bass on a website recently. This is the site I was talking about. (It’s kind of janky; keeps logging me out and forgetting what I put in the checkout cart. But it’s otherwise a good way to explore new music.) Now, normally I don’t review collections. I review albums. But boy, is this really great? Every other song was a fantastic example of drum & bass, be it liquid or… uh, whatever other d’n’b types exist, I’m sure! Point is, I really liked this and I think I would listen to it again. That’s not easy to do with a various artist collection! 8.5/10

Four Tet- Sixteen Oceans: I’ve listened to and enjoyed Four Tet’s music before, but he may not be the artist for me. This is very minimalist and bizarre. He’s clearly not tied to any one genre. It’s just weird and mostly boring. Let’s move on. 4.5/10

Superturtle- Student Flat Reunion: I heard one of their songs while going back through A Little Bit for Charity (possibly unnecessarily). I thought it sounded cool, so I checked out their page and spent the next few hours wading through some really bizarre alt rock. I would not be surprised if They Might Be Giants are on the list of these guys’ influences, but that’s also overselling them a bit. Everything they do is just really off-kilter in ways that are less than charming. But this album does contain the one song of their I liked (ironically, the one with nonsense for the chorus), and the music overall is a bit more charming than the rest of their catalogue. But I wouldn’t rush out and, y’know, listen to said catalogue over the course of an evening or anything. 5.5/10

The Faithful Sidekicks- Sales of Interest: Dig that DuckTales font on the cover. So these guys are a nerd comedy duo, and this is a concept album tackling standard nerd culture topics — Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, the Princess Bride, etc. — from the angle of commercialism. It’s pretty funny. I will say that their habit of the guy singing for a bit, then the lady cutting in with spoken word only works when either the music doesn’t stop, or it stops so they can do a short skit. Otherwise, it was a tad annoying. But the songs are amusing once you’ve recognized what they’re talking about, not to mention what they’re parodying. 6.5/10

Bob Dylan- Blonde on Blonde: Okay, time to show my pleb card. I have never understood why people like Bob Dylan. I would blame this on myself having a hard time understanding music lyrics, except that once you actually figure out what he’s saying, they still don’t make sense most of the time. To say nothing of his voice being so utterly strange I only really see it as a vector for parody. That being said, strip away the layers of poetry and deep folk meanings, and what do you get? In this case, some pretty decent music. I mean, the “Everybody must get stoned” song that starts this off (I guarantee no one remembers the title “Rainy Day Women #12 & 35”) is top-tier pop Dylan. He’s having fun, and across the record, he’s trying out a whole lot of things, most of which were really worth experimenting with. I don’t know if I’d call this accessible per se, but it’s definitely early Dylan at his most enjoyable. 7.5/10

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I'm a goddamn pony.
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