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Music => Music => Topic started by: BlackDragonSlayer on August 06, 2017, 10:03:26 AM

Title: BDS Presents You With Unsolicited Musical Opinions!
Post by: BlackDragonSlayer on August 06, 2017, 10:03:26 AM
Reviews of soundtracks, albums, EPs, standalone pieces; top 10 lists, bottom 10 lists, and just plain unordered lists. You don't want it? We have it all!

Chuck by Chuck Berry

(https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/c/c4/Chuck_Berry_-_Chuck.jpg)


Chuck is the twentieth and final studio album by Chuck Berry, released in 2017. Of course, going into this, there's a lot of emotion and certainly high expectations behind it, being an album that was so hyped from such a legendary artist—and the final album nonetheless.

The album's three singles, "Wonderful Woman," "Big Boys," and "Lady B. Goode," are the epitome of Berry's classic style found in songs like "Johnny B. Goode," "Roll Over Beethoven," "Sweet Little Sixteen," "Around and Around," and many more. However, unlike the other three, the "intro" to "Lady B. Goode" feels somewhat tacked on and like it could have been given some more, if only a little more, variation, which is only a slight blemish on an otherwise fine song. On the other hand, most of the other songs, especially the two covers ("You Go To My Head" and "3/4 Time (Enchiladas)"), diversify the sound of the album, though not entirely in a bad way. The only song on this album I actively dislike is "Dutchman," which does absolutely nothing for me, isn't very compelling to listen to (and is, in fact, quite confusing), and doesn't have good enough instrumentation to, in my mind, justify the entirely spoken—not sung—lyrics. Though the fact that "Wonderful Woman," the very first song on the album, is also the one I consider its best is a tad disappointing for the consistency of quality of the album, as I mentioned before, it is most definitely not the only good one.

Overall, it feels and sounds almost entirely like I expect a modern Chuck Berry album to sound, and that only makes Berry's timeless sound and groove all the more wonderful. It leaves us with several songs I feel are worthy to be among the artist's best, and that's saying something for someone consider to be one of the pioneers of rock and roll.


Track List Overview:
1. "Wonderful Woman" – 5:19
2. "Big Boys" – 3:05
3. "You Go to My Head" (Haven Gillespie, J. Fred Coots) – 3:21
4. "3/4 Time (Enchiladas)" (Tony Joe White) – 3:47
5. "Darlin" – 3:20
6. "Lady B. Goode" – 3:00
7. "She Still Loves You" – 2:55
8. "Jamaica Moon" – 3:50
9. "Dutchman" – 3:47
10. "Eyes of Man" – 2:27
Total Length: 34:51
Track listing information from here (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chuck_(Chuck_Berry_album)#Track_listing).

Tracks in Platinum are the one I consider to be the absolute best of the album.
Tracks in Gold are ones I consider to be among the artist's best.
Tracks in Red are ones I consider to be standout tracks on the album.


Consistency: 7/10
While tracks like "Wonderful Woman," "Big Boys," and "Lady B. Goode" certainly represent the work that Chuck Berry is most known for, a few other tracks stray from the overall "sound" of the album, which is not entirely a bad thing.

Quality: 9/10
"Dutchman" is the only real blotch in this album, but only because it's not much of a song. Even the two covers on the album are great.

Overall Rating: 8.5/10
Any fan of Chuck Berry's works, or fans of oldies in general, will be sure to enjoy this album, a final note from the legendary Chuck Berry.


Reviews so far
1: Chuck - Chuck Berry

2: Imaginary Friends - Freezepop (http://forum.ninsheetmusic.org/index.php?topic=9548.msg382354#msg382354)

3: David Bowie (1967) - David Bowie (http://forum.ninsheetmusic.org/index.php?topic=9548.msg382620#msg382620)

4: David Bowie (1969) - David Bowie (http://forum.ninsheetmusic.org/index.php?topic=9548.msg382982#msg382982)

5: The Dark Side of the Moon - Pink Floyd (http://forum.ninsheetmusic.org/index.php?topic=9548.msg383545#msg383545)

6: ★ - David Bowie (http://forum.ninsheetmusic.org/index.php?topic=9548.msg383654#msg383654)

7: The Man Who Sold the World - David Bowie (http://forum.ninsheetmusic.org/index.php?topic=9548.msg383871#msg383871)

8: Electric Warrior - T. Rex (http://forum.ninsheetmusic.org/index.php?topic=9548.msg386678#msg386678)

9: Animals - Pink Floyd (https://www.ninsheetmusic.org/forum/index.php?topic=9548.msg415332#msg415332)
[close]

Reviews by score
David Bowie (1967) - David Bowie - 6.0
David Bowie (1969) - David Bowie - 7.0
The Man Who Sold the World - David Bowie - 7.2
Chuck - Chuck Berry - 8.5
The Dark Side of the Moon - Pink Floyd - 8.9
Electric Warrior - T. Rex - 9.2
Imaginary Friends - Freezepop - 9.5
★ - David Bowie - 9.8
Animals - Pink Floyd - 9.8
[close]

Non-reviews
Songs I Hate: Christmas Edition (http://forum.ninsheetmusic.org/index.php?topic=9548.msg391894#msg391894)
[close]
Title: Re: BDS Presents You With Unsolicited Musical Opinions!
Post by: BlackDragonSlayer on August 09, 2017, 10:13:19 AM
Imaginary Friends by Freezepop

(https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/1/17/Freezepop_imaginary_friends.jpg)


Imaginary Friends is the fourth and current most recent album by the band Freezepop, released in 2010. Now, if you'd ask me what my favorite band that nobody has heard of is, my answer would be, of course, "Freezepop." Now, you may be wondering, "Freezepop-who?" I was first introduced to the band through the 2001 PS2 game Frequency, one of my favorite rhythm games of all time. The game, and its sequel, Amplitude, were also great for young people (such as myself) to discover a bunch of artists they hadn't heard of before. While most of the tracks were either original for the game, or otherwise forgettable (or sometimes both!), one song that I definitely did not forget, and will likely never forget, is "Science Genius Girl" by the aforementioned Freezepop. Just listen to it! (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cm2lvtJHya8) It's dope. That song should tell you all you need to know about the band. And if that's not enough, I... guess you could just look them up.

Anyway, uh, back to the main point. As the years went on, I gradually found myself looking for more and more Freezepop. At first, it was just their early works, but as time went on (fairly close to the present, actually, though I don't remember the exact time period), I found Imaginary Friends. And it's pretty great. Overall, since their first album, I feel that the band has really, really developed—and of course strengthened—their overall sound, and it's rather like fine wine. Although I don't always like a lot of electronic or synth music, there's something different to me about Freezepop. While I can't exactly put my finger on what it is, I think it has at least something to do with the lead singer's voice. It's so crisp and smooth, exceedingly succulent. It just works so well with the brilliantly crafted music behind it—which, at times, is reminiscent of music you'd expect to find in a video game (one of their older songs is even called "I Am Not Your Gameboy"), Frequency aside. Their often-zany lyrics make it hard to take them too seriously and makes their music even more fun to listen to. However, some songs do present exceptions to the "zany lyrics" typical of their songs; the song "Magnetic," the absolute powerhouse—so to say—of the album and my favorite Freezepop song, is a love song about, what else, attraction, and aside from a "science-y" mention or two, is played fairly straight.

I don't really have any songs on this album I dislike at all. Writing this review, in fact, strongly piques my interest about a particular thing. And I must say, thinking about this idea does quite restore my faith in modern music. Simply put: there may be junk and sad trash all around us at the top of the charts, but what lies in the shadows, waiting to be discovered, is perhaps what will truly be appreciated and remembered in the years to come.


Track List Overview:
1. "Natural Causes" - 4:37
2. "Lose That Boy" - 3:26
3. "Doppelgänger" - 3:41
4. "Special Effects" - 4:06
5. "Strange" - 4:21
6. "Magnetic" - 4:20
7. "We Don't Have Normal Lives" - 4:12
8. "Hypothetically" - 3:30
9. "Imaginary Friend" - 4:26
10. "Lady Spider" - 3:20
11. "Hot Air Balloons" - 3:22
12. "House of Mirrors" - 4:59
Total Length: 48:20
Track listing information from here (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imaginary_Friends_(Freezepop_album)#Track_listing).

Tracks in Platinum are the one I consider to be the absolute best of the album.
Tracks in Gold are ones I consider to be among the artist's best.
Tracks in Red are ones I consider to be standout tracks on the album.


Consistency: 9/10
From start to finish, this album is strong. The album, in my opinion, doesn't have many low points or any particularly weak songs. All around, the consistency is strong with this album.

Quality: 10/10
The band's sound, it seems, has developed strongly over the years, and has perhaps reached its pinnacle in this album. "Magnetic," in particular, is an amazing and super catchy song.

Overall Rating: 9.5/10
If you like any sort of electronic or synthpop music, I highly recommend you check out this album, as well as the rest of Freezepop's works. And this rating isn't even taking into account the bonus "Secret Companion" disc's content. That's worth a whole review in itself.
Title: Re: BDS Presents You With Unsolicited Musical Opinions!
Post by: BlackDragonSlayer on August 13, 2017, 06:26:11 AM
David Bowie (1967) by David Bowie

(https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/c/cb/Bowie-davidbowie.jpg)


David Bowie (1967) is the debut album by David Bowie, released in, of course, 1967 (surprise, surprise). All artists, of any kind, have to start somewhere, I guess, and this definitely is a somewhere. To be succinct, this album is kind of a mishmash of things. It's not completely trash, but it's not very good or cohesive either. Most of the songs are very short, with only one song ("Silly Blue Boy") being significantly over three minutes, with the shortest being just under two minutes. With fourteen songs in total, this shows, in part, that quantity does not always equate to quality. The other part of that equation, of course, are the songs themselves. Most of the songs are silly in nature (especially "The Laughing Gnome," which, while not featured on the original release of this album, was released around the same time, and has been featured on "special edition" re-releases), or more accurately, have an almost "storybook-ish" feel to them (which should be clear enough from the names of most of the songs), especially because of the lyrical content. Bowie's voice absolutely dominates each and every song, but mostly because of the weak, oftentimes-flat and uncompelling music behind it, and usually not because of the strength of his own voice (though you can tell he really tries on songs like "We Are Hungry Men," a song which perhaps reflects more of what he wanted to be writing about at the time). If you're expecting the strong, wild instrumentation of later albums, you will not find it here.

However, I must say, by and the far the most interesting song on this album is the aforementioned "We Are Hungry Men," which, while still not holding a candle to the rest of Bowie's works, is a song that has strong dystopian or apocalyptic overtones ("Anyone found guilty of consuming more than their allotted amount of air / Will be slaughtered and cremated / ... / Let me explain my project dear / Show you how I'll save the world / Or let it die within the year") that are found plentifully in albums like Hunky Dory, The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars, and Diamond Dogs (especially that last one). With the exception of "We Are Hungry Men," (for previously-described reasons), and maybe "She's Got Medals" and "Please Mr. Gravedigger," this would actually be a decent children's album, though I could probably find others albums I'd recommend more for that purpose. And if you want Bowie in a better "storybook" setting, I suggest you check out the 1978 David Bowie Narrates Prokofiev's Peter and the Wolf.


Track List Overview:
Side one
1. "Uncle Arthur" - 2:07
2. "Sell Me a Coat" - 2:58
3. "Rubber Band" - 2:17
4. "Love You till Tuesday" - 3:09
5. "There Is a Happy Land" - 3:11
6. "We Are Hungry Men" - 2:59
7. "When I Live My Dream" - 3:22

Side two
8. "Little Bombardier" - 3:23
9. "Silly Boy Blue" - 4:36
10. "Come and Buy My Toys" - 2:07
11. "Join the Gang" - 2:17
12. "She's Got Medals" - 2:23
13. "Maid of Bond Street" - 1:43
14. "Please Mr. Gravedigger" - 2:35
Total Length: 37:07
Track listing information from here (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Bowie_(1967_album)#Track_listing).

Tracks in Platinum are the one I consider to be the absolute best of the album.
Tracks in Gold are ones I consider to be among the artist's best.
Tracks in Red are ones I consider to be standout tracks on the album.


Consistency: 4/10
Almost nonexistent. It's playful and rather cheesy, but quite all over the place.

Quality: 6/10
It's not absolutely awful, but there's a good reason why this is not the album that brought Bowie into the spotlight.

Overall Rating: 6/10
Needless to say, this is a mostly forgettable album compared to the majority of Bowie's later works. But, of course, much, much better is to come in the next years...
Title: Re: BDS Presents You With Unsolicited Musical Opinions!
Post by: Bespinben on August 13, 2017, 09:29:27 AM
I'm not David Bowie

Title: Re: BDS Presents You With Unsolicited Musical Opinions!
Post by: MaestroUGC on August 13, 2017, 04:57:31 PM
BDS, we need to talk music sometime, our tastes are nearly identical.
Title: Re: BDS Presents You With Unsolicited Musical Opinions!
Post by: BlackDragonSlayer on August 17, 2017, 07:31:46 AM
David Bowie (1969) by David Bowie

(https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/b/b9/DavidBowiePhilips.jpg)


David Bowie (1969) is the second studio album by David Bowie, released in 1969. What a surprise. This album is also known as Space Oddity (named after its first and most notable track), and has been re-released before under that title, to distinguish it from the previously-reviewed 1967 album. This album, as a whole, tends to have much less of a "hard rock" sound and more of a softer kind of rock (one of the listed genres of the album is folk rock, which would seem to reflect or support this observation). In the video for "Space Oddity," Bowie is even seen playing an acoustic guitar, and unlike, for example, the later "Starman," the acoustic guitar sounds as if it dominates the majority of the song, while "Starman" features much more apparent and distinct heavy electric guitar segments (then again, what do I know? I'm just a casual).

"Cygnet Committee," the album's longest song, is a particularly interesting one as well. It starts out as a slow, somewhat ominous song that gradually builds more and more layers and—though I'm not certain if the tempo of the song increases at all, or if it's just the increasingly impassioned vocals and addition of more noise from the instruments that has that effect—increasing energy throughout the piece, ending with a repeated cry of "We want to live! We want to live! ... I want to live! I want to live! ... Live! Live! Live!" It's very confusing, but again, pretty interesting overall. Worth nothing, the similarly-lengthed "Memory of a Free Festival," which closes out side two (just like "Cygnet Committee" closes the first side) and the album as a whole, follows a similar structure (even ending on a repeated "chant," this time with the lyrics being "The Sun Machine is coming down, and we're gonna have a party"... whatever that's supposed to mean). I'd say the latter of these two songs is the better one, though both are some of the most notable songs on the album aside from, of course, "Space Oddity."


Track List Overview:
Side one
1. "Space Oddity" - 5:16
2. "Unwashed and Somewhat Slightly Dazed" - 6:12
3. "Don't Sit Down" (Hidden track appended to "Unwashed and Somewhat Slightly Dazed") - 0:42
4. "Letter to Hermione" - 2:36
5. "Cygnet Committee" - 9:35

Side two
6. "Janine" - 3:25
7. "An Occasional Dream" - 3:01
8. "Wild Eyed Boy from Freecloud" - 4:52
9. "God Knows I'm Good" - 3:21
10. "Memory of a Free Festival" - 7:09
Total Length: 45:13
Track listing information from here (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Bowie_(1969_album)#Track_listing).

Tracks in Platinum are the one I consider to be the absolute best of the album.
Tracks in Gold are ones I consider to be among the artist's best.
Tracks in Red are ones I consider to be standout tracks on the album.


Consistency: 6/10
This album is quite varied, both in the styles of the songs, their lengths, and quality. For example, "Space Oddity" is clearly the best (and most iconic) song on this album and none of the other songs rise to the same level, though most if not all the songs on the album are fairly good overall.

Quality: 7/10
Even if this album is certainly an improvement over the last album, this is still very much one that shows the relative inexperience and stylistic experimentation that many early bands and artists tend to have.

Overall Rating: 7/10
This album is a step up over the previous album, but still a bit of a far cry from later albums. But never fear! It's not going to be too long until we start getting into the definitive classics!
Title: Re: BDS Presents You With Unsolicited Musical Opinions!
Post by: BlackDragonSlayer on August 21, 2017, 12:05:02 PM
The Dark Side of the Moon by Pink Floyd

(https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/3/3b/Dark_Side_of_the_Moon.png)


The Dark Side of the Moon is the eighth studio album by Pink Floyd, released in 1973, often considered not only one of the band's greatest albums, but also one of the greatest albums of all time. It's only fit to review it now, given the occasion. And, as somewhat of a side note to this review, I should add: as you might or might not have gleaned or guessed from my "consistency" sub-rating, I'm usually at least somewhat partial to concept albums because of their unity and flow, and this one is no exception.

Overall, I'd say it's a very thoughtful and enthralling album if you really let yourself get into it—and you really should—and you can clearly envision, or at the very least get a faint idea of, the whole creative process and craziness (perhaps not surprising given the album's themes) that went into it. Like another album I will eventually review in due time, this album often feels like an adventure of sorts. The musical highs and lows of the album (both in terms of which tracks I consider better/worse, and the structure of the individual songs themselves; "The Great Gig in the Sky" is a good example of the latter), as well as the numerous non-traditional usage of sound effects spread throughout the album deftly and (at times; it's never really a wild or "in your face" sort of album, I might add) subtly convey turning points of this "adventure." But talking about all this reminds me... I should probably listen to more Pink Floyd stuff. Though I'm familiar with all three parts of "Another Brick in the Wall" and a few other snippets here and there, there's still so much I haven't listened to. Perhaps getting this review out will give me a good starting point to work from?


Track List Overview:
Side one
1. "Speak to Me" - 1:30
2. "Breathe" - 2:43
3. "On the Run" - 3:30
4. "Time" (containing "Breathe (Reprise)") - 6:53
5. "The Great Gig in the Sky" - 4:15

Side two
6. "Money" - 6:30
7. "Us and Them" - 7:51
8. "Any Colour You Like" - 3:24
9. "Brain Damage" - 3:50
10. "Eclipse" - 2:03
Total Length: 42:49
Track listing information from here (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Dark_Side_of_the_Moon#Track_listing).

Tracks in Platinum are the one I consider to be the absolute best of the album.
Tracks in Gold are ones I consider to be among the artist's best.
Tracks in Red are ones I consider to be standout tracks on the album.


Consistency: 9/10
So many songs segue perfectly into each other, the absolute best instance of which is the final pair of songs, "Brain Damage" and "Eclipse."

Quality: 8/10
In no uncertain terms, this is, at times, a very "out there" album. But what it does well, it does very well.

Overall Rating: 8.9/10
Is this the greatest album of all time? No, not in my opinion at least. Is it a great album? Certainly, yes.
Title: Re: BDS Presents You With Unsolicited Musical Opinions!
Post by: E. Gadd Industries on August 21, 2017, 01:27:36 PM
Okay, there HAS to be something behind this analysis with "Eclipse"; if not, this is a crazy coincidence XD
Title: Re: BDS Presents You With Unsolicited Musical Opinions!
Post by: BlackDragonSlayer on August 21, 2017, 05:18:15 PM
It's only fit to review it now, given the occasion.
I originally had in mind to review an entirely different, unrelated album, but then I realized: wait, I might as well make the most of this opportunity.
Title: Re: BDS Presents You With Unsolicited Musical Opinions!
Post by: E. Gadd Industries on August 22, 2017, 12:58:34 AM
I originally had in mind to review an entirely different, unrelated album, but then I realized: wait, I might as well make the most of this opportunity.
Oh... RIP I guess I overread that phrase
Title: Re: BDS Presents You With Unsolicited Musical Opinions!
Post by: BlackDragonSlayer on August 22, 2017, 07:14:56 AM
★ by David Bowie

(https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/9/97/Blackstar_%28Front_Cover%29.png)


★ (otherwise known as Blackstar) is the twenty-fifth and final studio album by David Bowie, released in 2016. What, you thought I was done with the eclipse theme? No; we're doing a super eclipse double features, fools! I'm going to milk this event for all I can!

Blackstar is an album about many things. More obvious, it is an album about mortality and the imminency of death. But it is also about a career, a life, and, most importantly, the music itself, and (indirectly) how it can be used in so many ways, to bring so many different people together from so many different paths and backgrounds. As has been said by Bowie himself, "Music has given me over 40 years of extraordinary experiences. I can't say that life's pains or more tragic episodes have been diminished because of it. But it's allowed me so many moments of companionship when I've been lonely and a sublime means of communication when I wanted to touch people. It's been both my doorway of perception and the house that I live in." And even to the end, that message can be found in his music. The power of music is present all around us in our lives—what music we like and listen to, how it has shaped us throughout the years and continues to shape us, even how it might (in ways both expected and unexpected) change the course of our lives (something I'm sure many of us at NSM might understand)—and when words alone may be inadequate to convey ourselves, music is there for us.

Interestingly enough, I must add the the title song ("Blackstar") isn't one I was as thrilled with the first time I listened to it; being such a massive piece, it's not exactly the most approachable of songs, but it's really one of those songs you grow to appreciate the more and more you listen to it. It's a beautifully crafted, eerie piece—its structure akin to a three-movement symphony, though it lacks an expected "fourth" movement, perhaps cut off suddenly, before you expect it—and you can really tell when you take a moment to slow down and listen to the little intricacies of it. The part roughly around the middle (the beginning of the second "segment") is my absolute favorite part; it feels like the the audio representation of holding your breath in tense anticipation of what's next. It's brilliant that music can even make you feel that way in the first place.


Track List Overview:
1. "Blackstar" - 9:57
2. "'Tis a Pity She Was a Whore" - 4:52
3. "Lazarus" - 6:22
4. "Sue (Or in a Season of Crime)" - 4:40
5. "Girl Loves Me" - 4:51
6. "Dollar Days" - 4:44
7. "I Can't Give Everything Away" - 5:47
Total Length: 41:13
Track listing information from here (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blackstar_(album)#Track_listing).

Tracks in Platinum are the one I consider to be the absolute best of the album.
Tracks in Gold are ones I consider to be among the artist's best.
Tracks in Red are ones I consider to be standout tracks on the album.


Consistency: 9/10
Strong all throughout, this album uses it style and genre to great effect.

Quality: 10/10
Two absolutely amazing songs in "Blackstar" and "Lazarus" with the rest of the lineup being strong as well.

Overall Rating: 9.8/10
After experiencing a resurgence with his preceding album The Next Day, Bowie came back swinging with his swan song and one of his greatest albums; alas, good things, it seems cannot last. We must cherish what we have now and what we have left behind. Perhaps, it is as it has been said: The light that burns twice as bright burns half as long...
Title: Re: BDS Presents You With Unsolicited Musical Opinions!
Post by: MaestroUGC on August 22, 2017, 05:33:39 PM
Perhaps I was alone in my initial assessment of "Blackstar", as I found the song immediately captivating despite its length. But as I gained the views of others they agreed with you more that since the song was so titanic compared to his other offerings it's a bit hard to take as an album opener, especially considering how it was intrinsically tied with his death for many people. And you mentioned its structure which, as someone who listens to classical music constantly, I understood his overarching goal with the song. That said I have many more thoughts about this album because I consider it one of the finest musical offerings of all time, much less that of Bowie's other works, I may elaborate elsewhere at a later time.
Title: Re: BDS Presents You With Unsolicited Musical Opinions!
Post by: triforced1 on August 22, 2017, 05:44:49 PM
I'm digging this. Also, we have similar tastes in music. You planning on doing the other Bowie albums too?
Title: Re: BDS Presents You With Unsolicited Musical Opinions!
Post by: BlackDragonSlayer on August 23, 2017, 05:37:58 AM
Perhaps I was alone in my initial assessment of "Blackstar", as I found the song immediately captivating despite its length. But as I gained the views of others they agreed with you more that since the song was so titanic compared to his other offerings it's a bit hard to take as an album opener, especially considering how it was intrinsically tied with his death for many people. And you mentioned its structure which, as someone who listens to classical music constantly, I understood his overarching goal with the song. That said I have many more thoughts about this album because I consider it one of the finest musical offerings of all time, much less that of Bowie's other works, I may elaborate elsewhere at a later time.
Interesting analysis/commentary! Also, I think I'm a bit harsher on my ratings here than I am in my video game thread (while, simultaneously, a bad review of an album will likely be more sparse because in most instances, I'd be expressly seeking out an album to give a bad review); right now, I can only think of two albums I would give a perfect 10 (one of which is a compilation album so... kind of cheating? :P), either because of a deep personal connection, or because I was so absolutely blown away by it.

I'm digging this. Also, we have similar tastes in music. You planning on doing the other Bowie albums too?
Thank you; glad you're enjoying it so far! Also, yeah, that's my plan. Right now, the general plan is "two Bowie albums, one other album, repeat," most likely in chronological order, with an exception here and there (if I review his EPs, soundtracks, and live albums, for example, they will most likely be reviewed at a far later time).
Title: Re: BDS Presents You With Unsolicited Musical Opinions!
Post by: BlackDragonSlayer on August 25, 2017, 09:12:16 AM
The Man Who Sold the World by David Bowie

(https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/2/23/TheManWhoSoldtheWorld.jpg)


The Man Who Sold the World is the third studio album by David Bowie, released in 1970. Quite the departure from what listeners may have come to expect from the last album, this one has more of a hard rock feel than either the albums directly preceding it and the ones coming directly after it, yet this sound is still rather rough around the edges. Bowie definitely revisited this style, at least somewhat, in later albums, something I'll touch upon in later reviews.

However, the title tracks strays a bit too far from this sound, and that hurts the song, and turns it from one that could easily hit the Top 20 to something that might be a Top 50, or maybe even a Top 40, for me. I'm more of a fan of the Nirvana cover of this song because that version gives it the grit and somber tone the song deserved, instead of the weird "foreign" or "exotic" sound it had (for similar reasons, I'm not a fan of the Midge Ure version of the song, as in several places, it seems to essentially exaggerate the aspects of the original I don't like; I believe Bowie released another version of the song later that has somewhat of a "darker" tone to it, but in my opinion, it still somewhat misses the mark). In addition, I'm not as much of a fan of the album's opening track, "The Width of a Circle," as I feel it's a bit too "long-winded" for its own good, and after the first four-or-so minutes, quickly loses my interest, but despite that, the song has a strong start. "She Shook Me Cold" is probably the worst song on the album, and makes the transition to the title track all the more drastic. The album ends on a positive note with "The Superman," a song which, though it has some better recordings, if memory serves me correctly, is still a pretty good song.


Track List Overview:
Side one
1. "The Width of a Circle" - 8:05
2. "All the Madmen" - 5:38
3. "Black Country Rock" - 3:32
4. "After All" - 3:52

Side two
5. "Running Gun Blues" - 3:11
6. "Saviour Machine" - 4:25
7. "She Shook Me Cold" - 4:13
8. "The Man Who Sold the World" - 3:55
9. "The Supermen" - 3:38
Total Length: 40:29
Track listing information from here (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Man_Who_Sold_the_World_(album)#Track_listing).

Tracks in Platinum are the one I consider to be the absolute best of the album.
Tracks in Gold are ones I consider to be among the artist's best.
Tracks in Red are ones I consider to be standout tracks on the album.


Consistency: 7/10
Though the second half of the album is slightly weaker than the first, the album is generally consistent overall, especially in the style of each song. However, the title tracks throws a bit of a curveball to the otherwise-consistent genre.

Quality: 7/10
Though a further improvement over the last two albums, this album still has a few shortcomings that hold it back from greatness. Aside from those mentioned above, "All the Madmen" and "Black Country Rock" are pretty good songs that are greatly overshadowed, in my opinion, by much of Bowie's later works.

Overall Rating: 7.2/10
Overall, I would consider this album "okay," if slightly overrated. It's a bit too "hard" and rough around the edges, yet its title track isn't really rough nor hard enough, which is exactly what it needs to be.
Title: Re: BDS Presents You With Unsolicited Musical Opinions!
Post by: BlackDragonSlayer on September 19, 2017, 05:24:47 AM
Electric Warrior by T. Rex

(https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/e/e5/T_Rex_Electric_Warrior_UK_album_cover.jpg)


Electric Warrior is the second studio album by the band T. Rex (in their incarnation under that name), released in 1971. I'm a couple days late from when I wanted to do this, but hey, better late than never, right?

The album is one of the most notable of the glam rock genre, which started around the year this album was released and continued to have prominence throughout the mid 1970's. This particular album, though it sometimes verges on the more mellow side of glam rock (particularly due to singer Marc Bolan's somewhat soothing, relaxed voice), is definitely a strong example of the genre and a great starting point if you want to listen to some more 70s music.

I don't actually have much else to say about the album, so I'll keep this review fairly brief. This is definitely an album you should listen, or at least check out a song or two from; of the songs, "Mambo Sun," "Bang a Gong (Get It On)," and "Life's a Gas" are probably the three I'd recommend most from the album, though from the rest, it's hard to pick favorites! "The Motivator" is probably the worst song of the album, if only because it's pretty much a not-as-good version of another T. Rex song "Hot Love," one that's included on the bonus tracks for one of the reissues of the album.


Track List Overview:
Side one
1. "Mambo Sun" - 3:40
2. "Cosmic Dancer" - 4:30
3. Jeepster" - 4:12
4. "Monolith" - 3:49
5. "Lean Woman Blues" - 3:02

Side two
6. "Bang a Gong (Get It On)" - 4:27
7. "Planet Queen" - 3:13
8. "Girl" - 2:32
9. "The Motivator" - 4:00
10. "Life's a Gas" - 2:24
11. "Rip Off" - 3:40
Total Length: 39:02
Track listing information from here (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electric_Warrior#Track_listing).

Tracks in Platinum are the one I consider to be the absolute best of the album.
Tracks in Gold are ones I consider to be among the artist's best.
Tracks in Red are ones I consider to be standout tracks on the album.


Consistency: 8/10
Though not as "out there" as other examples from the glam rock genre, the album sets its style well.

Quality: 9/10
Though this album doesn't contain all their best hits (the bonus tracks—not included here—go a long way by adding "Hot Love," which is a great song), it's still very solid overall.

Overall Rating: 9.2/10
Among the most notable albums of 1971, Electric Warrior definitely gets a strong recommendation from me. If you're interested in the glam rock movement—which you should be—this is definitely the album to listen to.
Title: Re: BDS Presents You With Unsolicited Musical Opinions!
Post by: BlackDragonSlayer on December 27, 2017, 04:54:09 AM
Songs I Hate: Christmas Edition

So, the Christmas season has come and gone. The winter chill may still be in the air, but gone is the warmth of holiday cheer that wells up within each and every one of us when we feel Christmas coming round. Corporations are done with Christmas, so shouldn't we be too? Greedy consumers swarm Walmarts across the nation looking for the inevitable post-Christmas sales. And corporations rake in the money. After musing about this exploitation of the Christmas holiday, I'm feeling particularly bitter and miserly today, so this is the perfect time for me to talk about today's subject: Christmas songs I hate. Yes, that's right kiddos, not all Christmas songs are pure and perfect. There are song bad ones. There are some annoying ones. And then there are some that make you want to rip your ears off. Ouch. Of all shapes and varieties, here are a few songs I want to call out in particular for being overrated, without any further ado.

#1: "Last Christmas" by Wham!

I do not like this song. I do not enjoy this song. I hate this song. I will not listen to it in a cab, I will not listen to it in a mall, I will not listen to it at home, here, there, or anywhere! What, may you ask, is the reason for my passionate hate for this song? Well, let's break it apart, piece by piece, and see what the problem is...

1: "Last Christmas, I gave you my heart." Ooh, sounds painful. Oh, wait, this probably isn't supposed to be taken literally. Ah, well, moving on.
2: "But the very next day you gave it away." Well, that's a pretty scummy thing to do to someone you love. Let's see where this leads.
3: "This year, to save me from tears." Now, this is going somewhere. What are you going to do this year? Not give your heart away to people so carelessly? Realize that you're a whole and complete person by yourself? The tension is palpable.
4: "I'll give it to someone special." I... I... I... what. You'll... give it... to someone... special. So what you're saying is... last year... you didn't give it to someone "special." You practically just gave it to some rando who you probably shouldn't have given it to. Wow. I mean, really. Wow. This person is really the sharpest knife in the drawer. We're dealing with a real winner here. Totally didn't bring this situation onto yourself. But I mean, we... we can redeem this, can't we? Just have to go a little further, and...
5: "Now, I know what a fool I've been/But if you kissed me now/I know you'd fool me again." SWEET HOLY FRICK FRACK. We're trapped here, we've hit rock bottom. We can't go back, cause there's bad lyrics back there, and we can't go forward, because what comes next might possibly be worse. I don't know if the speaker of this song if supposed to be one of those protagonists you don't root for, but dear God, I do not root for this person. Keep this person far, far away from me; almost as far as you should keep this song away from me. They are unhealthy and probably a bit bipolar. This is not what Christmas is about.

This song is a thinly veiled love song masquerading as a Christmas song. It's an awful, horrible song, and every time I listen to it, I die a little inside; what's worse is that it gets even more awful when you hear a version by any artist other than Wham! I don't know how that's possible, but it is. The song gets even more unbearable. I don't want to associate anything about this song with Christmas, and from now on, I will try my best to repress all memory of this song. Goodbye.

#2: "The Christmas Song" by Bob Wells and Mel Tormé

Now, after the vitriolic fire I just got finished spewing above, you may wonder what pure, unadulterated hate lies in store for this song. Happy to say (or possibly disappointing, depending on your perspective), this song isn't one I hate with a burning passions. Rather, I simply have a few issues with the song and find it rather overrated.

1: This song has the gall to call itself THE Christmas Song. Seems rather preemptive and uppity of them. A Christmas Song isn't good enough for them?!!?
2: I'd just point out that having somebody literally nip at your nose would probably hurt. Or be very awkward. That line conjures some weird, un-Christmassy images for me.
3: Saying "folks dressed up like Eskimos," is blatantly racist and I refuse to believe they couldn't have substituted it for something else.
4: EVERYTHING about the lines, "And so I'm offering this simple phrase/To kids from one to ninety-two." Ninety-two? NiNEtY-TwO!?!!!! It's like nobody had ever lived past ninety-two years old when this song was written. "Hey, ninety-two rhymes, so let's use that!" Maybe you should rewrite the song to make something more sensible work!? Huh huh huh? Ever thought about that, bub? What, according to this song, is supposed to happen when someone becomes ninety-three? You're just gonna tell em to screw off because Christmas isn't for them, and they should just lay in a hole and freeze to death, because apparently ninety-three year olds can't have a merry Christmas? This line is just lazy writing and it completely taints the song for me, much like with Last Christmas. With a line like that, seriously, how did this song even become that popular!? I'd like to imagine I'm not the only one who wants to bang my head against the dashboard every time I hear this song come on the radio. It's a dumb line! It's mind-numbingly stupid! It's inane! I don't like it! I don't like it one bit!
5: Nat King Cole's version is pretty much the only version of this song you're going to hear. Because it's hard to make this song sound anything other than the mess it is if you don't have a voice like Nat King Cole.

Okay, well, that was more than a "few" issues. More into the territory of a "couple" issues. Uh, well, anyway... moving on?

#3: "It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas" by Meredith Willson

Ok, to be fair, I don't really hate this song at all. It's an okay song, it's decent. But there is one line I would like to point out for your consideration.

1: "And Mom and Dad can hardly wait for school to start again." Wow, that's just... wow, that's sad. Apparently, for these parents, Christmas is not a happy time to spend with their family, free of all care, worry, and responsibility, but a time to be dreaded and the end of which is eagerly anticipated. What are these parents going to say when their kids are all grown up and out of the house? I bet they'll miss them then. I bet they'll miss them when they're old and crippled and can't take care of themselves any longer. I'll bet they'll miss them when they're taking their last breath and just want to see their children one last time. But they're not there. The children are gone. They couldn't wait to get as far away from you as possible, because you were never happy when they got out of school for Christmas break. You were never happy with them. Ever. And that's not the meaning of Christmas. No, no, not at all.

We, uh, actually got pretty dark here really quickly. That was, uh, actually, not my intention. I'm going to call it a day and end things here, before they get any worse. Goodnight everybody, and have a happy New Year!!
Title: Re: BDS Presents You With Unsolicited Musical Opinions!
Post by: BlackDragonSlayer on October 28, 2019, 03:47:13 AM
Animals by Pink Floyd

(https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/7/74/Pink_Floyd-Animals-Frontal.jpg)


Animals is the tenth studio album by Pink Floyd, released in 1977. Like other Pink Floyd albums released before and after this one, some of the songs are long. Really long. In fact, if the first and last song were not included, the album would only have three songs but would still be almost 40 minutes long. That being said, I'm glad those two songs are included, because together, they bookend the album fantastically, a short and sweet message drawn from Roger Waters' relationship with his then-wife. The whole album is credibly jaded and depressing, about all kinds of horrible people (the eponymous "Animals," divided into three different categories) who inhabit the world, but the two parts of "Pigs on the Wing" reveal that there's still a glimmer of hope in the world.

All the songs on this album are super great, and it's really hard to pick a favorite out of the middle three. I think that's a good testament to how strong the album is. With the exception of the two parts of "Pigs on the Wing," I don't think this is really an album that you listen to individual songs of, which might be a downside to some people because of the time commitment, but then again, when you have songs that are all longer than ten minutes, time's always going to be an issue.

As a last note, I also love the way Waters sings "charade" in the third song.


Track List Overview:
Side one
1. "Pigs on the Wing (Part 1)" - 1:24
2. "Dogs" - 17:04

Side two
3. "Pigs (Three Different Ones)" - 11:28
4. "Sheep" - 10:20
5. "Pigs on the Wing (Part 2)" - 1:24
Total Length: 41:40
Track listing information from here (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Animals_(Pink_Floyd_album)#Track_listing).

Tracks in Platinum are the one I consider to be the absolute best of the album.
Tracks in Gold are ones I consider to be among the artist's best.
Tracks in Red are ones I consider to be standout tracks on the album.


Consistency: 10/10
Being a concept album, all of the songs pretty much share a common theme. The two parts of "Pigs on the Wing" offer a touching counterpoint to that theme.

Quality: 10/10
Every song on this album is amazing, which is good because there are only five of them. Both parts of "Pigs on the Wing" put together is probably my favorite Pink Floyd song.

Overall Rating: 9.8/10
This is absolutely a fantastic musical experience and I think it's very much underrated to the casual listener. Definitely my favorite Pink Floyd album. I can't wait for them to finally announce and release the planned remaster.