The 2nd, 3rd and 4th music review for new music in 2010! WHAT. I know crazy. Here goes nothing.
One Life Stand ***1/2
Our favorite nerd-dance-rockers are back with their low-key, soulful disc. Doesn't have "that" song to represent the album, you know, something like "Ready for the Floor" or "Over and Over, but the songs are smooth and relaxing. "One Life Stand" and the closer "Take It In" are good songs, but don't have the same hookiness to them. Other songs work well, too, but as mentioned before they lack those heavy, jerky beats that made us love them in the first place. Then again, I've noticed nobody really likes a new Hot Chip album when it first comes up. Maybe by the end of this year, I'll learn to love it.
These New Puritans
Hailing from England, These New Puritans combine punk, electronic and hip-hop on their compelling second album. I can't really write anything else about it, though. Lotta stomping beats, chanting about war, and an orchestra of woodwinds. It's a pretty great album that's something of the hip-hop post punk album. I guess. I still recommend it despite this relatively unexciting review.
The Monitor ****
The second album from these Jersey punks is a whopper. If you thought their modern classic from 2008 The Airing of Grievances was epic, then you'll probably be blown away by this one. A concept album of sorts about the Civil War parrelling modern times, the album is certainly one of the year's most interesting releases. At 65 minutes, with the average song lasting more than 6 minutes, The Monitor is a sloppy album, but goddammit that's what makes it great. For a band like Titus Andronicus, technical precision or sounding focused is the least of their worries. What they do best is that they manage to capture the anger and ferocity of the best rock songs. From the new "Your Life is Over"chants of "The Enemy is Everywhere" and "You Will Always be a Loser" to astonishingly epic closer "The Battle of Hampton Roads", The Monitor is fucking ferocious and like Grievances, god damn inspiring. They're too compelling to criticize; if you do, you probably have no soul.