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Sunday, October 09, 2005

#404 - Essence, Lucinda Williams

"Subtle and often stark, Essence is an unusually quiet and frequently downbeat set that depicts a fragile emotional vulnerability which rarely makes its presence felt in Williams' music; there's an unadorned longing in songs like "Blue" and "Lonely Girls" that's new and deeply affecting, and the leaf-in-the-breeze quaver of Williams' voice on "I Envy the Wind" is as heart-rending as anything she's ever committed to tape." (allmusic guide)

#403 - Station To Station, David Bowie

"The perfect combination of Bowie's pop instincts and avant-garde inclinations. "Golden Years" is the rare disco hit that FM rock radio continues to embrace, while most of the disc is a bracing mix of cold Krautrock, American Soul, British reserve and otherworldly sonic experimentation. Bowie's cover of the old standard "Wild is the Wind" is priceless." (real music guide)

#402 - Entertainment!, Gang Of Four

"Forget about all the indie bands that ape the Gang of Four. What's really important is that this 1979 debut is still as resonant and powerful as ever. White funk rhythms, blasts of off-kilter guitar, and lyrics that matter-of-factly show how the rules of commerce have conquered our personal lives. (OK, professor -- this always rocks!)" (real music guide)

#401 - Junta, Phish

"The original album is even better (than added live track), of course, with great sound and better playing, not to mention the typical wild and woolly Phish humor spilling out all over the lengthy tracks. Highly recommended whether you're starting to discover Phish or are backing up to the beginning." (allmusic guide)

#400 - Fight Songs, Old 97's

"Texas troubadours Old 97's moved farther away from their traditional C&W sound on their 1999 release, Fight Songs, instead incorporating warmly distorted guitars and crunchy rhythms into their brash pop songs. Thankfully for fans of the band, the terrific songwriting is still there, but the sound is a little more polished than the twang-a-billy bombast of their previous album." (allmusic guide)

#399 - Hail To The Thief, Radiohead

"Guitars churn and chime and sound like guitars more often than not; drums are more likely to be played by a human; and discernible verses are more frequently trailed by discernible choruses. So, whether or not the group is to be considered "back," there is a certain return to relatively traditional songcraft." (allmusic guide)

#398 - King Of America, Elvis Costello

"This 1986 album is easily one of the highlights of Costello's long career. Both his vocals and dazzling lyrics are in peak form. The recording focuses on organic instrumentation, drawing on folk, country and Roots Rock. The songs "Indoor Fireworks" and "American Without Tears" are certainly some of his best, if not the best of the era itself." (real music guide)


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