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A Bugged Out Mix By (2CD)
Klaxons - CD
25 New from
Klaxons are a band that few will be unfamiliar with by the end of 2007. There pioneering album Myths Of The Future has won all kinds of acclaim (Mercury Prize included) the highlights of which are being used to soundtrack pretty much every single Channel 4 show ever shown.But with a sound that has obviously impressed a lot of people, where do Klaxons themselves draw inspiration from?A Bugged Out Mix By Klaxons is probably the most eclectic dance mix I have ever heard in my life, including Blur, Josef K, Wu Tang Clan and Roy Orbison. By mixing these vastly differing songs together, Klaxons give a few clues to their own sound. For every song that is gritty and noisy, there is one to match with beautiful melodies and great pop sensibilites; much like the band themselves.A wouldn't say that these 2 CDs would be an ideal soundtrack to a massive party, but for is a great soundtrack for a brisk walk or just hanging out.A great album for those interested in the roots of that Klaxons sound.
Battles - CD
25 New from
Battles is a band that are well and truly the sum of their parts. They comprise ex Helmut musicians and an experimental jazz artist. On paper...it really shouldn't work as well as it does.The first track that caught my attention was the single 'Atlas', a pounding call to arms of a beat, peppered with vocoded samples and chugging guitars.Some journalists have referred to this band as 'math-rock', but that doesn't really fit in with the way I have understood the band so far. Sure, it combines a lot of the clinical beats, time signatures and pendulum accuracy that are key characteristics to the genre, but there is a lot more in these songs than an awkward rhythm. There is, by turns, heart, warmth, aggression and an almost obsessive desire to create an album that cannot be directly linked to any particular influence and has no particular forebear (as of yet).A standout album that is really an inspiration of what can be achieved with imagination and skill.
Noise Won't Stop
Shy Child - CD
18 New from
I saw Shy Child live recently and felt compelled to get as much music of theirs as I could. What is immediately amazing about them as a band, is that there is only two of them. One plays the 'Key-tar' and the other plays the drums. Depite this they sound so full and sonically accomplished.The stand-out track is definitely 'Noise Won't Stop'. This song has a jerky 'samba-esque' feel to the beat during the verse, before kicking into a shout along riotous chorus.Shy Child are the best kind of new band; they bring something completely fresh and different to the table of the bands being lazily labelled 'nu-rave' by journalists. They have the beats, melodies, intelligent and often heart-felt lyrics and best of all, they really pull it off on stage as well.A really worthy debut album.
Cansei De Ser Sexy (Special Edition) (CD & DVD)
CSS - CD
The first thing that gripped me about CSS' debut album is how much it reminded me of the New York disco scene of the late 70's to the early 80's. This was refreshing as it is a genre which hasn't been repeatedly revived hundreds of times since is carnation (see Bloc Party et al angular guitar from Television and Gang Of Four).The genius though is derived through lead singer Lovefoxxx's lyrical imagination. The song titles give away the topics fairly easily, but this is no bad thing. This is a band who wear their agenda on their collective sleeve. This band is about fun, love, sex and dancing and I for one welcome a group who aren't doom laden or lovelorn.This album is like the soundtrack to every debauched night out you will ever have and utterly essential to anyone who enjoys danceable beats, hummable tunes and tongue-in-cheek lyrics.Their live shows are also energy-filled spectacles that really show that these guys aren't all talk.
American Dad!: Volume 1
17 New from
Those who watched and loved Family Guy (I think thats probably everyone reading this), were undoubtedly excited about the prospect of another Seth Macfarlane project.Unlike Family Guy, American Dad doesn't rely on the comedy device of the absurd flashbacks and the fantastical situations Peter Griffin found himself in.What lies at the basis of American Dad is an animated reaction to the political state of 21st century america. The jokes about George Bush's government come thick and fast, with the lead character (Stan) being an exaggerated symbol of republican america's attitudes towards world affairs. Topics raised include immigation, terrorism, religion and homeland security. This might sound too heavy for a comedy show, but all subjects are dealt with in an ironic way. The comedy (clearly aimed at liberals) comes from the bigotted Stan and his prejudices.I enjoyed this series but felt that often it missed the mark. It lacks the immediacy of shows like Family Guy and The Simpsons and doesn't feel like a progression from these family based animations.The Smith family aren't too far removed from the Griffins, which makes me feel that this project may be slightly lazy in writing terms. The jokes aren't as funny as the aforementioned shows and it doesn't make as bigger impact on the viewer.A truly exceptional show would not be centred around an american family with 2 point 4 children and a talking pet.If Macfarlane starts any new projects, perhaps he should be more progressive in the basis of the show and focus on creating something altogether new and exciting.That said, this is still a show which deals in the kind of adult humour that made Family Guy such a resounding success.