Noise 101: CD reviews for Feb. 14
Big changes have been going on with Two Hours Traffic since they dropped Territory back in 2009. They dropped guitarist Alec O’Hanley for former band member Andrew MacDonald. Nathan Gill was brought in to play bass. Joel Plaskett was dropped as the producer. All of these changes are clearly heard on Foolish Blood. Gill brings a more rhythmic bass section for the band to work with, and the songs are clearly are written around that. While a couple of songs sound a little similar because of this, it is more of a growing pain than a glaring issue. Still at the front is Liam Corcoran, who keeps Two Hours Traffic from stalling. With all these changes, Foolish Blood brings a fun, rocking album that should tease fans with what the new band can do with more time spent together.
— Nathan Ross
Mature Themes, Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti’s ninth album, is a very raw and charming piece due to its low-fi nature. It’s like if you found some mystic musical and lyrical relic in your uncle’s attic that has been matured like a fine scotch. It’s a scotch that goes down smooth. It’s floral, it’s effervescent, it’s herbaceous, it may even have a little petrol. The lyrics come across well, artistic yet insane, and at times even oddly pervy. You can tell Ariel Pink is intelligently guiding you. No matter where this album takes you and the oddities you encounter on the way, you’ll always feel supported. “Baby,” a cover of a song by Donnie and Joe Emerson that is the caboose of the album, only fits because of its antique feel. It’s a gift from the past and it is arguably better than the original, which is a statement that can also sum up the album: it’s better than nostalgia.
— Logan Pollon
All That Echoes
Josh Groban. He is perfect. And his newest album, All That Echoes, does not fall short. When the sound of his beautiful, melodious tenor hits your ears, you’ll be writhing in your chair, begging for more. While some of the songs, such as the opening track “Brave” and “Happy in My Heartache”, have more of a pop sound, there are still moments that show off his amazing range, with songs such as “She Moved Through The Fair” and “Sincera.” Josh’s voice is enchanting, his music slightly reminiscent of a Dancing With the Stars episode – which is good if you’re in the mood for dancing. If not, close your eyes and pretend you’re in Italy, or perhaps at a very nice Italian restaurant. At any rate, there’s no denying his amazing vocal range. He’s Michael Buble, but with actual talent.
— Holly Triebwasser