NEWSFLASH: According to the Avalanches website they are currently clearing samples for their new album to be out towards the end of the year! Can’t wait for this one.
Kasabian – West Ryder Pauper Lunatic Asylum
This is an album I had been looking forward to for a long time. I was so excited to hear what new sounds the psychedelic indie electro rock band had come up with. After a few listens though it hasn’t consumed my every waking hour like I thought I would – don’t get me wrong it’s a really good album, but West Ryder just isn’t amazing. I may be guilty of putting too high expectations on the album, as some of their older songs, namely Club Foot, Processed Beats, LSF (from their self titled debut), Shoot The Runner, Empire and Me Plus One (from 2nd album Empire) are some of my favourite songs ever and I HIGHLY recommend you listen to them.
From Kasabian (2004):
Download (Right Click Save As);
From Empire (2006):
Shot from Vlad The Impaler
There are similar moments of brilliance on West Ryder as well, with the 60s-influenced Cream-sounding track Fire being the obvious stand out and one of the best songs I’ve heard all year. As good as the song is, I feel like they could’ve done a lot more with the small break at 2:35 by extending it and creating a bigger build-up. To me the track sounds pretty similar to what Tame Impala have been re-creating – so if you like them you’ll no doubt like Fire. Other songs worth noting are the catchy as hell tracks Where Did All The Love Go? and Take Aim, while the bass-heavy pump-up track Vlad The Impaler is fun and features Noel Fielding from The Mighty Boosh in its weird/scary/funny/creepy film clip.
I have a feeling this album would sound better in its live translation, so I’ll be eagerly awaiting their eventual tour to Oz. While it doesn’t really have many strong singles, it is a more cohesive from start to finish than its predecessors. All in all it’s a really solid album that’s definitely worth listening to, Kasabian fan or not; however it didn’t quite reach my expectation of being THE album of the year.
Phoenix – Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix
Another album I have been desperately waiting for. This time the end result did live up to my expectations. I would go so far to say that Phoenix’s latest effort is agonisingly close to my idea of a perfect pop album. Everything about it is just so catchy and uplifting (though not in a cheesy house sort of way) that it instantly lifts your mood and compels you to tap your feet. That’s not to say you are bombarded with monotonous single after single after single. The album’s beauty is in its ability to vary the feelings throughout the album and take you on journey rather than leaving you nauseous from travelling in circles.
When I first saw the track list I was extremely disappointed to see that Twenty-One One Zero was nowhere to be found (one of the first tracks I posted here and one of my favourite songs ever). But on first listen I realised the sly dogs had simply re-produced the song to give it a more electronic feel and renamed it Love Like A Sunset – phew. This is an album that everyone could enjoy – even your friends with really bad music taste – so do yourself a favour and get it.
White Lies – To Lose My Life
These guys are a London band, who have had enormous success over in the UK and a fair amount of airplay on Triple J. They make melodramatic synth-rock, with lyrics that are almost always gloomy in subject-matter, yet the singer’s voice is so strong it never lets the music become depressing. It is also an extremely well polished album for a debut effort. I’ve read they put on a great live show, so make sure you check them out if you’re lucky enough to be going to Splendour.
Freeland – Cope
Freeland’s new album delivers exactly what you’d expect in terms of quality (high), but the sound might not be exactly what you thought it would be. The heavy electronics are all still there, but this follow-up album has a much rockier tinge to it. It also sounds like the drums have been performed live, which I’m sure is a result of Tommy Lee’s publicised involvement with the record. The band also has a full time vocalist now, who suits their sound well. These are all positives in my book. The standout track is the lead single Under Control which is a politically charged heavy pop song. Another highlight for me is the track Mancry, which shows he can create a good builder of a track that leaves you wanting more.
If you went, what did you think of Datarock? Don’t be afraid to leave a comment, I would love it if you did and comment on anything for that matter, feedback is always good – positive or constructive.
If you like the songs I’ve posted you should definitely get their respective albums.