Friday, February 20, 2015

Music Library FINAL Catch-Up: Rs and Ss

Continuing with the brevity in service of finishing this damn project for once and for all.

The Ramones - It's Alive (1979). Somehow playing the songs even faster gives them an extra edge of immediacy. One of the best live albums ever.

The Red Paintings - The Revolution Is Never Coming (2014). Very enjoyable album with the bombast of Titus Andronicus, but like that band, they never cross the line into bombast for its own sake.

Charlie Rich - The Complete Sun Masters (1958-62). The man was a genius from the very beginning.

Terry Riley - Copenhagen 1970 (with Don Cherry), Koln 1975 (with Don Cherry), Shri Camel (1980), and Songs for The Ten Voices Of The Two Prophets (1983). Although none of these are among my favorites of Riley's work, they all are quite interesting and full of surprises.

Run The Jewels - Run The Jewels 2 (2014). One of my favorite hip-hop albums of last year.

Doug Sahm/Sir Douglas Quintet - Together After Five (1970). Man, I love Sir Douglas's ability to blend Tejano and conjunto music with 60's garage and soul.

The Seldom Scene - Long Time... Seldom Scene (2013). I had thought this was going to be a career overview, but it's a new recording. Modern-day bluegrass generally sort of bores me with all of its infinitesimal variations on the same formula, but this album was very listenable due to the excellent song choices ("Hickory Wind" in particular) and the easy familiarity of the musicians with each other.

The Sex Clark Five - Strum & Drum (1987). By all rights this should be a stone classic in every music lover's collection. Garage, power pop, Southern jangle, and noise rock all swept up together.

Shudder To Think - Ten Spot (1990), Funeral At The Movies (1991), and Pony Express Record (1994). I had always heard that these guys were interesting, but I never confirmed this until recently.

Silkworm - L'ajre (1992). Those moments when these guys let loose and play some damn dramatic guitar are the best.

Silver Scooter - Orleans Parish (1999). From Austin's underappreciated power-pop underground.

Sturgill Simpson - Metamodern Sounds In Country Music (2014). Another favorite from last year. Simpson doesn't completely overhaul the formula, but he tweaks it in fascinating ways.

Sonic Youth - Confusion Is Sex (1983). Replacing a very old, worn-out cassette.

Regina Spektor - Soviet Kitsch (2004). Spektor can do no wrong.

Splitsville - The Complete Pet Soul (2001). There's a few good songs on here, but mostly I thought this was overmannered.

Spoon - They Want My Soul (2014). And another favorite from last year, one of the best Spoon albums in a long while. I may say the same thing with every release, though.

St. Vincent - Actor (2009), Strange Mercy (2011), Krokodil 7" (2012), 4AD Session EP (2012), and St. Vincent (2014). She's an amazing talent, and her increasing rock star status is well-deserved.

Sun Kil Moon - Benji (2014). This is such a weird album, a work of intense mystery. Mark Kozelek may be more confessional here than anyone has ever been, but he achieves it by throwing away line meter and rhyme and delivering the lyrics as if they were emerging fully-formed from his head. Which should be awful, but he somehow makes it work. I listened to this more than any other album last year.

Sun Ra - Other Planes Of There (1964). Another Sun Ra album to drink deeply from.


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