Since I seem to be covering my favorites in various media lately, why not music?
Return to the Sea – Islands
Amazon.com insisted that I wanted this album. Their music-pushing is a little annoying, but Amazon knows me all too well. I wasn’t too familiar with the Unicorns, from whom Islands apparently sprung, but they’re from Montreal, and maybe that’s about all we need to know. Even expecting to like this album, I was pleasantly surprised at just how listenable it is. There’s something good-naturedly bratty about its sound, which is fun.
Live Through This – Hole
Maybe you remember that Courtney love used to be known for her band in addition to her late husband and drug problem. This was actually one of the first CDs I ever bought (maybe the second), when I was about 14. Having lost it long ago, I just bought it again recently, after hearing that Ms. Love is working on a new album. Listening to it again, I’m not convinced that its subject matter is appropriate for a 14-year-old, but it’s certainly just as good as I remembered. A very tight, cohesive album, at once very pretty and disturbing.
Very curious to hear what’s coming next from her.
Neon Bible – Arcade Fire
This was another case in which it seemed like every media outlet was insisting that we all want this album, the follow-up to the hit Funeral. So I put off getting it until everyone shut up about it, and now I admit I feel a little late to the party. It’s dark, epic, and completely deadpan, which is refreshing. Maybe like a soundtrack to a hip and modernized Les Miserables. It seems that you just can’t go wrong with Montreal music these days. Is something in the water?
Wild Like Children – Tilly and the Wall
This one is a couple of years old, but I just recently got it. It’s upbeat indie-pop, with the unique accompaniment of tap-dancing throughout. I have to say, the tapping schtick gets to be a little much for me to listen to the album straight through, but it’s charming nonetheless – the songs themselves are clever, and certainly deserving of points for originality.
Also looking forward to the new Cornelius. (Anyone heard it?)