Hey everyone! Looking at the title of this post, I'm reviewing the albums that I've been meaning to buy, but have decided to check out from the library and download on my computer for the time being. No, I'm not screwing these bands over by not buying their albums; Yes, I will buy all of these albums at a later date (Trust me everyone). The Crazy thing is that I've heard most of the songs off of these albums, but I just never got around to buying them all (darn new releases!). I had to sort and stack the CD's at work this weekend (I work at the library alright?) and while I was putting them away, I thought "Hey! I can just check out the CD's that I haven't bought yet and get them on vinyl!" It might save me money, it might not but I think that I have a pretty good idea.I checked out 6 of these this time around, so expect 6 reveiews from me in the next week.
First up is Titus Andronicus' The Monitor.Keeping with the The Sound Collection Review principle, I haven't heard this album all the way through. Because I haven't heard them all the way though yet, you are reading my first reaction to the songs on this album. Alright, enough background, here is the review.
I have heard of Titus Andronicus, but I haven't listened to a full album from them before. Because I haven't, I thought that The Monitor would be a good album for me to check out to see if I would like it, and to buy later, once I found out that I liked it. I heard that this album is loosely based on the Civil War. I completed an intense American History Course, so I will fact check if I need to (I don't think that i will)
A More Prefect Union
I'm noticing that this song (I don't know about the whole album) is a mix beteween Punk and experimental (I don't want to be wrong here, I'm just getting this vibe). Lyrically, this song sounds like a bunch of those old Civil War songs mixed in with some distorted guitar. I like this. One question though, why is it 7 minutes? When I was looking at the track listing I thought "Why is this opening track so long? Heck, why is this album so long?". I'm thinking that this is because this is a "slight" consept album, but I like it.
Titus Andronicus Forever
Wow, looks like they just went along to the next song! I like that. I guess that this song can stand by itself too, but I just like it when songs merge (it makes the album go by faster). I like how they are inserting Civil War era quotes into their songs. That is pretty neat. Its like aditional background lyrics. As for this song, they are quite simple, but I like it.
No Future Part Three: Escape from No Future
Right to the next song again! Looking at the name, I can assume that this song is a part of a trillogy, and I like trillogys. But this song is coming off as sad for some reason. Mabie this is a song about depression? It just sounds like it is. Anyway, can you spot the refrences?
Four songs in, and I'm liking how this album is flowing from one song to another (this is always an added plus). I looked into the lyrics a little while this song was playing and I can't 100% confirm it, but "There will be parties, there will be fun" is a part of a Billy Bragg song (its on his first album, I knew I heard this somewhere). Any band that adds in the lyrics of annother musican or artist knows what they are doing. Another added bonus to Titus Andronicus. So far this is my favorite.
A Pot in which to Piss
Wow, the feedback is transferring too! Nice. Looking on the lyrics, the narrator is thinking about the past and is saying that the things that did not mean anything do mean something now that they are looking back on it (ooh sounds like my life...) The more that I listen to it, Titus Andronicus sounds more and more like Billy Bragg. This is a good thing because, Billy is Brilliant. Going back to the lyrics "They're all going to be laughing at you" is a quote from Stephens King's "Carrie" (great movie, even better book) and the last little part at the end is a Walt Witman Poem.
Four Score and Seven
The lyrics on this one are light and deep at the same time. This might be one of those songs that you have to hear to understand, so I'm going to let the song speak for itself.
Theme from "Cheers"
This song is broken into parts (one and two are in this song, three and four are in the other).This song vaguely reminds me of early Fugazi, Embrace, or something that I've heard before. (I just can't really put my finger on it), and I'm liking this in this song. It's kind of long, but I feel like it is probably the best song on the album (at least for me). Its loud, is has some slow parts, and the lyrics are petty good too.
To Old Friends and New
This song is making me depressed, it must be the lyrics and you know, all of that other complicated "the music can change your emotions and stuff" song. Again, you just have to just listen to song because I can't annalise it that well. I'm sure that you can find this song on Youtube or some other place online.
This song isn't too complicated, but they went all out in the musical section (do you hear that saxaphone?). I call these "buffer songs". They are just what they sound like, they are beteween too depressing songs, and they try to lightnen the mood a little. In our case, it helps lighten the mood before a 14 (!) minute song.
The Battle of Hampton...
And what do you know, the last song on the album is the longest song on the album. Hey, I like this! I knew that I would. Looking at the lyrics that I always do, I think that this song is song is like the "end" of the album. Like the story is coming to an end, the battle is coming to an end, and things are just finished. I can't really explain it, you just have to listen to this song to understand it. Anyway, I feel like I'm picking up small hints of Sonic Youth (Yeah I know, but look, its super long, it has hints of Punk and experimental stuff in it, and it also has storyline lyrics). Great song.
Overall, the lyrics play a large part in this album. They explain a lot about the songs, but at the same time, the lyrics aren't really about "large complicated issues" but at the same time they are. This is the mark of a good concept album. Although I didn't think that I would like this album at all (don't ask me why), I did enjoy it and I think that you will too; before you listen though,I think that you should listen to this all the way though though, it is an album that you have to listen to once before you take it piece by piece.