Noise 101: CD Reviews for September 12
Hall of Fame
Getting Our Our Dreams
With catchy songs like “Ashley” and “Beware,” featuring Miguel and Lil’ Wayne respectively, Big Sean’s second studio album Hall of Fame is chalk full of big name collaborations. Though sometimes caught up with clichés and shallow lyrics, songs like “10 2 10” and “First Chain” (featuring Nas and Kid Cudi) make Hall of Fame a solid album about Big Sean’s journey from the shady streets of Detroit to making it big with the help of his mentor, Kanye West. In his sophomore album, Big Sean proves that while he has a long way to go to reach real hall of fame status, with his hard work and dedication, he’ll be sticking around.
– Amanda Paterson
Stony Plain Records
With his sixth album Western Star, Albertan folk-country singer Tim Hus looks to join friends, Corb Lund and Ian Tyson, as a Western Canadian legend. The album, dedicated to his mentor — the late great Stompin’ Tom Connors — is a decidedly Nashville country sound that strays away from the melodic folk melodies of Tyson, or the hardline lyrics of Lund. The album begins to hit its stride with “Pheasant Huntin’ Day” — an ode to bird hunting dogs on the prairie — and then really starts to move with the country blues song “Halifax Blues”, which explores the usual country staples of broken hearts, women and boozing. This album continues the familiar local Hus sound, but fails to deliver to the level of his counterparts — Tyson and Lund. If you want to hear him play, he is best heard in local pubs throughout Calgary with a beer in your hand — otherwise buy the Tyson album.
– T.C. Vaughan
With track names like “As I Am in Tim Hortons, I Realize I Hate Tim Hortons” and “Luke Skywalker is a Whiney Baby,” Mission Accomplished is B. A. Johnston’s ninth album. Released only 18 months after his last album, Hi Dudes!, Johnston is back with songs about eating waffles in heaven, blowing his GST cheque at Giant Tiger and hacking his Roger’s box to steal cable. Full of self-deprecation and humour, Mission Accomplished is surprisingly catchy and fun. It could easily be the soundtrack to a drunken night with friends and the hangover the next day, or those days when dropping out of school and quitting your job seems like the best idea.
– Becca Paterson