Friday, June 02, 2006

Edwin McCain finds American tradition

Every now and again, a musician comes along that reminds you of the first time you heard The Beatles.

Edwin McCain doesn't really give you that feeling, but does promise to make you forget all those others who did.

This album at first came across as country to me. As you probably imagine, I wasn't pleased as I am not a fan of the fad country has become. The joke before was crying about your wife, dog, or rent, and then drinking and driving your pick up to make up for it. Or the other joke, what do you get if you play a country music song backwards? You wife, truck and huntin' dog back.

Well forget all the jokes, The Beatles, and anyone who sounded like them or reminded you of Revolver (although I love that album). Edwin McCain is for real.

His album, Lost in America, displays hope of music still having heart (you know, that thing that actually wrote songs before pop music sneaked in through the window and sliced it's arteries with a Pussy Cat Dolls' CD).

By far, the best song off this album is the closer, Babylon, which Edwin didn't write. But don't hold that against him, because his raspy voice will capture you, just a few seconds after the electric guitar does, and about a minute and a half before the flawless blues rooted solos redefine the structure of the album.

I highly recommend illegally downloading Babylon, and if you like, you may want to try purchasing this album and helping out the underdog.

Listen or Order album here!

For Promotional Use Only

I was a lucky school boy yesterday.

I walked into the Kernel because I had no where to go in Lex Vegas. My apartment wouldn't be ready for me to move in for another two hours. So I just cleaned up the photo department and revised our photographer list (as we had two new photogs).

Crystal Little (summer editor of the Kernel) asked me if I liked the Chili Peppers...


She gave me the new album. The one I rated as being freaking fantastic. I all ready had it, but I thought I could easily find someone else who would enjoy it half as much as I do (which is still 100%).

After this she told me to come look at what else she had, because there were a ton of albums she was about to, dare I say it...toss!

(The features section gets free albums sent to them by the artist's record labels in hopes that we will write good things about their album, and encourage purchases.)

I gained so many good albums yesterday. Even if they weren't things that I was interested in, there were so many good bands that I had not heard of.

Some of the most striking albums were:
  • RHCP - Stadium Arcadium *
  • Snow Patrol - Eyes Open *
  • Drag the River - It's Crazy
  • Men Women & Children *
  • Less Than Jake - in with the out crowd
  • Edwin McCain - Lost in America *
  • The Flaming Lips - at WAR with the Mystics *
  • The Trust
  • Moth - Immune to Gravity *
  • MercyMe
  • Ashton Allen - Dew Drops
* first impression was an amazing album, which stands out from the heaping amount of random albums laying accross my floor.

So I decided as a tribute to the albums, I will do at least a review of these albums listed, and probably a few more. Why not promote these bands, eh? After all, it is their company's will to sell and promote that I received all their albums for free!

So sit back, and prepare for what is to come! Awesomeness.

If nothing else I expect all of you to download the one recommended song I give from each album. If you refuse, you're basically wasting your ability to hear.

The Flaming Lips

Looking for something to lock your lips to?

Look just a bit past the Milky Way, take a right at the first red light, and somewhere in there you'll find The Flaming Lips' new album, at WAR with the Mystics.

Blowing right past pop culture's expectations, at WAR with the Mystics is the lime for your Corona, the match in place of the lighter, or the medium rare instead of the well done. The whole CD seems like half cooked ideas at first, but merely 45 seconds into songs you can't wait to start the whole album over again.

The first song on the album, The Yeah Yeah Yeah Song, started playing through my system, and was twice as annoying as the name (especially since that stomach cramping band actually called the Yeah Yeah Yeahs). But after just a minute of play, I was excited to be listening to this album and from this song on I promised myself (as I often do with new albums) that I would not skip through the songs.

I believe skipping through songs forces you to take the work as the artists didn't plan for. After you know an album by heart, it is more acceptable...but what if we had taken Tommy by The Who and just skipped around?

Now, The Flaming Lips are no The Who, but they're definitely Guess Who worthy (and they wrote American Woman...[feel free to stop reading if you really thought Lenny Krappitz wrote that song]).

My Cosmic Autumn Rebellion is one of my favorites off this album. The lyrics are great. They're by far some of the most symple, and easily read lyrics I've heard in a long time, but that's partially what made it so enjoyable. As with much of this CD.

You dont' have to wondering if you're getting it. You do. It's good music. It's bold. It's fresh. It's "mystical".

The Flaming Lips have taken music as it is on MTV, put it in an empty coffee can, waited for the chlorine to evaporate, added their touch of vanilla extract(or whatever makes music good...not popular. I imagine it would be something like vanilla), baked it for 7 hours at 450, and as if there had been a recipe all along, we have a great album packed with 12 powerful tracks.

I would recommend that no matter your taste in music that you illegally download some of this album. And if you are shocked, violated, or just freaked out by how good this sounds, think about doing ONE of two things:

1) Buying the album from your local music store. Supporting the band. Helping their record companies see their fans, know they're good, and call back for another album (and back the Lips' wallets too).


2) Illegally download the ENTiRE album. Whatever. I don't care.

Enjoy whichever path you take.