and his band The Shins
have just pooped their sophomore release Chutes Too
. In what has been a rather dull year for music releases, receiving this album a few
months ago restored my faith in the music Buddha. THANK YOU LORD. Itís common
knowledge now that......well, we all know most bands never live up to their hyped first
release well.....BREAK OUT THE CHAMPERS, I think The Shins have cracked the
This album stands tall next to Oh! Inverted World
with the uniqueness and inventiveness of James Mercer's melodic sensibility, which simply cannot be overstated. On Chutes Too Narrow, as with its predecessor, Mercer makes brilliant use of his formidable vocal range, writing soaring melodies every bit as original as they are memorable. Thereís not a dull moment on this record. Right from the beginning, James etches out Kissing the Lipless
that has everything from meaningful/meaningless lyrics (Iíll let you decide) to a fresh catchy tune..... and carries all the way to the mellow riffs of Those To Come
, 34 minutes later.
Itís not just a good example of indie pop done right, itís also a powerful testament to pop music's capacity for depth, beauty and expressiveness.
Shins - Kissing The Lipless 192kbps 4.5mb
The Shins - Mines Not A High Horse 192kbps 4.8mb
The Shins - So
Says I 192kbps 3.9mb
Shins - Young Pilgrims 192kbps 3.9mb
After the death of guitarist, Mary Hansen
late last year, Stereolabís
picked up from where
they left us 2 years ago with the release of a new maxi ep entitled íinstant 0 in the universeí
which was leaked/released a few months ago. To put it simple, this sounds pretty much like
anything Stereolab have done since Emperor Tomato Ketchup
. Itís not a bad thing but itís
not a good thing either. They seem to have stopped trying to push the limits with
experimenting and settled for your next cocktail space jazz party soundtrack.
Why am I doing a post on it then? Even if this ep is a little woozy and sounds like it came
straight from 2001's cutting room floor, It has some very nice moments, for instance
which starts off with Laetitia Sadier's ever-distinct alto and is nu skool Ďlab
to a tee. Even without Mary to add complexity, these tracks do hold up, even if they have
lost that edge.
This leaves Stereolab fans wondering if these cocktail space jazzy folk will the do a 180
degree turn or go into their next long player with an unchanged idea, due out Australia Day 2004.
Stereolab - Ď...Sudden_Stars' 192kbps 6.4mb
Stereolab - Jaunty Monty and the Bubbles of Silence 192kbps 5.7mb