Cassettes Won't Listen - Evinspacey
Jason Drake the mind behind Cassettes Won’t Listen had his business head screwed tightly on when naming this album. Before its release the publicity around the album was already rife. Kevin Spacey, who the album was named after, felt it necessary to issue a cease and desist letter which in situations like this is a PR persons dream. As the industry insiders would say, ‘any publicity is good publicity’.
The album actually has nothing to do with the actor at all. Drake explained in interviews that the name was originally meant to allude to the open space he was acclimatizing to after moving from Brooklyn to Southern California. It also wasn’t the first time he’d been on the receiving end of a cease and desist letter as he’d previously pissed off Guns N’ Roses after making remixes from Chinese Democracy and mixing them with Ludacris acapella takes, all before the G n R album had it’s official release.
Evinspacey the album (nothing to do with an actor of a similar name) is the follow up to the 2008 album Small Time Machine which garnered a fair amount of attention for Drake after he decided to turn his bedroom hip hop making machine into something more elaborate after including live instruments and picking up the mic.
His latest offering is an electro indie affair incorporating hip hop beats and a vaguely Death Cab for Cutie style vocal (in tone not in lyrical content) smothered in squeaks and spacey synth sounds. The best songs on the album in my opinion ('Wave To The Winners', 'The Night Shines & Stuck') all have slightly dark undertones and are surrounded by slightly more generic summery pop songs like the first single ‘perfect day’.
It’s a decent release and a large step towards Drake becoming further established as an electro pop artist. Personally I’d like to see him pushing more boundaries and breaking more rules in his music. I think then we might see his next album making much larger strides into our collective consciousness.
Purchase and listen
Iceage are a punk band constantly accompanied by a frenzied buzz, writ large in blood, vomit and excrement (maybe). A Danish newspaper called them "teenage punks full of anger and anxiety" – probably enough to get all other right thinking Danish teens interested. They are the talk of the blogosphere and, if some online tastemakers are to be believed, these Danish teenagers are the saviours of punk (whatever that means). [read more]
Freak folk’s most recent wave may have long since crested, but Meg Baird, one sixth (depending on how you look at it) of psych troupe Espers, is back with Seasons On Earth, her first solo effort since 2007’s Dear Companion. The Philadelphia native’s newest release sees her still firmly ensconced in the folk/country niche, with a few more guests than last time around, although you’d be hard pressed to guess it. [read more]
Admittedly, on paper it doesn't look great. Between a name dying to be emblazoned in hot pink neon and a remarkable fixation on sultry synthesizers, at a glance that Canadian duo New Look appear little more than a throwback; you'd be forgiven for predicting a cloying, hairspray-scented time-vacuum hardly worth a roll of the eyes, let alone a rolling-up of the blazer sleeves. The reality of their eponymous debut album however, is pleasingly to the contrary. [read more]
Listening to Hot Head Show’s debut album, The Lemon LP stimulates time consuming, and ultimately fruitless, experiments to track, catalogue and rationalise the potential influences, or borrowed sounds one might detect across the LP’s reasonably concise thirty four minutes. Primus or Les Claypool (with whom the band has a touring relationship) is perhaps the most obvious, but it is hard to stymie further, ever-more eclectic suggestions. [read more]