spring music preview ’09.

so rolling stone has recently released their spring music preview, showcasing bunches of albums coming out in the next six months or so. here are the ones that caught my eye for one reason or another.

1. bob dylan – together through life (4/28)
bob dylan is an enigma to me. his music isn’t exactly campus-walking music to me because i wouldn’t necessarily call him all that good. like technically good. he was revolutionary, ground-breaking, all that, but he played simple guitar tunes and sang his lyrics through a weird wail. not saying it’s bad, but i just wouldn’t call him a virtuoso. so i wouldn’t say i’m excited about a new bob dylan album, and i certainly won’t go get it right away, but it will eventually find it’s way into my itunes library.

2. ben harper – white lies for dark times (5/5)
this is more noteworthy just cause ben harper is a artist i respect, even though i hardly ever listen to him. he’s one of those artists that i know is incredibly talented, his live shows are out of this world, he has a very cool style, but i’ve just never really focused on him or his music. i have his live at mars album but that’s it. and the main reason i have that album is cause of his sexual healing cover (so freakin’ sexy). so for me, seeing he’s got a new album coming out is more like “oh. i bet it’ll be good” but that’s about where it ends.

3. dave matthews band – big whiskey and the groogrux king (6/2)
this is almost the same as the ben harper release for me; i almost wish i was a bigger dave fan so i was more excited about it. when i was around 15 though i fell in love with the dave matthews band and absolutely ate up all of their albums. for the last 5 years or so though, i haven’t really listened to them at all. so this album i’m kind of iffy about. maybe one day in the future i will find all my old dave cds and put them on my computer and introduce them to my kids and fall back in love with their music. at that point i will probably get this album and not like it as much as under the table and dreaming.

4. ok go – title tbd (august)
i guess i can’t say i’m excited for this one either, but i’m interested to hear how it sounds. their first album was great and i never really got into the second one more than like three of the tunes, but i think i would’ve liked it had i really spent time on it. but when lead singer damien kulash says this album sounds like “purple rain through broken speakers,” that’s definitely enough to intrigue me.

there were a bunch of other albums that made me say “hm interesting” but nothing i was excited about. even these four i’m like “eh.” other ones i noticed but don’t care about were eminem’s new album, lil’ wayne’s, 50 cent’s, green day’s, jonas brothers, mos def, black eyed peas. i have thoughts about all these, but only like a sentence long so it wasn’t even worth writing them down. on second thought that’s wrong. here’s what i think about those 7, respectively:
– you can rhyme like nobody but that doesn’t matter when you don’t rhyme about anything substantial and your music is SO childish.
– you had the biggest album last year but none of the songs were good. how does that work? i hope this new “rock” style you’re exploring shows everybody that you actually do suck.
– no one cares anymore. what happened to the no more solo albums pledge if your album lost to kanye?
– stop trying to make epic punk music. those two words don’t belong together.
– you got your fame from the DISNEY channel. how can you look at yourselves as real artists?
– i wish i liked your music more. you are a great emcee but your stuff’s just not accessible to me.
– holy cow you guys stopped being good before you ever even started. pump it was kind of a fun song, yet nothing good came before it and nothing good has come since. your new song is awful. how are you still popular?

the other thing of note in the rolling stone article is how many old artists are releasing new albums. elvis costello, dmb, depeche mode, bob dylan, steve earle, flaming lips, green day, willie nelson, sonic youth, wilco, neil young. these people have all been around for at least like 15 years, some much much longer than that. that’s incredible. and at the same time, disappointing that really none of them i’m big fans of.

so that’s about it. really kind of a disappointing year. last year i had coldplay, ben folds, al green, john mayer. some of my absolute favorites. this year…nobody. sucks. guess it’ll give me time to focus on my surplus of older music.

-jon

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