To really hear an artist's work, you must look past the hit singles. The entire album is worth hearing to truly get a glimpse of it all in one body of work. Here are some of the albums I am listening to this week.
Garbage - Not Your Kind of People (2012)
Garbage is an rock band featuring Shirley Manson on vocals (formerly of the band Angelfish which was featured on a previous entry), drummer Butch Vig (one of my favorite producers), guitarist Duke Erickson, and bassist Steve Marker. This latest album was recorded right here in Atwater Village and Silverlake, and marks the return of Garbage, their first album is over 7 years! This album was recorded on Garbage's own label STUNVOLUME. What is great about this album is that it reminds me of their work around the Version 2.0 album, more rocking, less pop like Beautiful Garbage. They also had some recent shows right here in Los Angeles at the El Rey theatre and a KROQ show. A must hear! Here are some essential tracks.
I Hate Love:
AFI - Decemberunderground (2006)
AFI have always been a band that has kept people guessing. They started out as a hardcore punk band with a dash of Misfits-style horror punk, then a more poetic band who occasionally covered bands like The Cure and Minor Threat, then when Butch Vig produced their album Sing The Sorrow, they started working with techno beats, strings, and brought in a new dimension into their music and a more gothic edge. Decemberunderground was their followup to that album. I especially love the newwavish song 37mm, which I believe was intended to be a Blakq Audio song (Davey Havok's and Jade's electronic sideproject) and the song The Missing Frame also brings back a bit of an 80s sound. There are hard songs on here, mellower songs, songs that feature electronic beats, but all songs have something to offer. Here are a few of my favorites.
Bad Religion - Stranger Than Fiction (1994)
Bad Religion's major label debut. This was the last album to feature guitarist/founder/cosongwriter Brett Gurewitz (who would later return to the band when they came back to Epitaph) and it's one of their best records. Incomplete is still one of my favorite songs of all time and a great opener to the album. Horray for Me lyrically is just brilliant. The song Television also has an appearance by Tim Armstrong of the band Rancid. This is not just another punk record, this one is something else. Signing to a major label did not make them a sellout. They even got some MTV play for the songs Infected and 21st Century Digital Boy. An essential record for anyone.
Horray For Me:
Meat Puppets - Meat Puppets II (1984)
Many people know of the Meat Puppets and this album in particular, thanks to Nirvana. The Meat Puppets appeared on Nirvana's Unplugged album and Nirvana covered 3 songs from this album, Plateau, Oh Me, and Lake of Fire. I like Nirvana's versions but these are wayy more interesting, though Kurt does have a better voice. This album is a mixture of punk, country, rock and everything in between. The band themselves say they were intoxicated and high while recording this and honestly, it shows. Though they lack vocally, that is what makes this album so great. It's so out there, and lyrically brilliant. Here are some of my favorites: