Feb 012011

Blame it on Samberg!

I’ve made a pledge for 2011 to listen to and comment on more NEW MUSIC. It’s important to listen to NEW MUSIC and see if any of it’s good, if any of it makes me want to continue to seek out more NEW MUSIC. Right? Without further ado, here are some very quick hits, to see if I can’t kickstart a year of NEW MUSIC reviews!

Destroyer, “Kaputt”

Destroyer, the band led by New Pornographer Dan Bejar, has a new album out called Kaputt. It’s getting a lot of feature reviews, all of which focus on synths, sax, and—one potential saving grace—late-period Roxy Music. I like Roxy Music enough to have dug their later period almost as much as their middle period (but not half as much as their first 3 albums). I associate Bejar’s typical sound as being “Bowie-esque,” so that should be close enough to make a venture into late-period Roxy Music gelatinous funk-lite worth checking out. Let’s see… Here’s the title track from Destroyer’s latest.

Analysis: This video is funny and ridiculous, but is this guy concerned with anything but outdoing the telegraphed video smarm of Andy Samberg? The lyrics are really stupid (and stupid for trying to be funny), and there’s little of musical value. And the song is over 6 minutes long! Ha, ha. This is a decent joke. Fuck you, Samberg.

Gang of Four, Comcast

Gang of Four, Content

This album, which I’ve been checking out right here, right now on Rock Town Hall, is stronger than I was expecting, but it is tough, with a limited palette like the one Gang of Four chooses to use, to make more than 2 albums and still find a way to say what you have to say, no? It’s a wonder when artists like X get 3 albums worth of excellent material out of their own limited palette.

Analysis: Without the barren production of the first two albums, what’s to keep Go4 from sounding like U2 or Duran Duran? There’s a jackhammer brightness to this album that would probably work great live but is the aural equivalent of a restaurant with sleek gray, black, and rose decor in 2010. I’ll overlook the album cover, which looks a Comcast credit card. The hell with digital reverb!

Bern Kelly, “Malorie”

I kind of dig this, Nashville musician Bern Kelly’s retro, public-domain video for the single off his new album, The Damage. A goofy, slightly New Wave/power pop vibe pervades. Unlike that Destroyer video, this could stand on its own without the visual gags.

Analysis: It’s the musical equivalent of a $7.99 gag gift you might pick up as a stocking stuffer at Urban Outfitters and chuckle over for a couple of years, like a good “bathroom book.” Contrast with that Destroyer video, which is more like the loosely knitted, trendy sweater you’d pay $34.99 for the privilege of wearing once before remembering why the ’80s drove you to spend a few weeks thinking you might actually like snorting coke.


  4 Responses to “Insta-Review: KingEd’s Got a Brand New Bag of Stuff”

  1. misterioso

    KingEd wrote: “It’s important to listen to NEW MUSIC and see if any of it’s good, if any of it makes me want to continue to seek out more NEW MUSIC. Right?”

    Sounds like your trying hard to convince yourself, KingEd. Can’t fault you for that. I gave the Destroyer cut 30 seconds of my time, which is roughly half a minute more than it deserved. The Bern Kelly song is perfectly ok if not terribly memorable. But if I heard it again I wouldn’t be angry.

  2. sammymaudlin

    Andy Samberg is HI-larious. Fuck you King.

  3. For your benefit I hope Ed doesn’t see what you said to him.

  4. mockcarr

    OK, one long sketch for the Chairy payoff.

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