Sunday, July 6, 2014

A Second Spinning (Round 1)

I've been buying albums like crazy ever since I was in 3rd grade. There's been albums I've loved and albums I've hated. Some from local bands, some from big names and even more from my 8 year Christian Music age. I've decided to take a stack of 20 albums that I disliked in my collection each month and give them another listen to see if over the years my opinion has changed.

Here's my breakdowns and reasons why

My Opinion Didn't Change On:
Toad the Wet Sprocket: Fear - In college I was downloading random songs and discovered an acoustic version of the song Walk on the Ocean by Toad the Wet Sprocket. They were a band I always knew the name of but didn't know any songs by (it wasn't until a few years later that I discovered they wrote the song Good Intentions which I always loved). I picked up Fear for that song and was disappointed in general. For starters I preferred the acoustic rendition and found that the only other song I liked was the other single All I Want. The only thing that changed this second time was that I found a 3rd song I liked  (In My Ear)

Violent Femmes: 3 - I also bought this album in college. I was just getting into the Violent Femmes (although I had been a fan of Blister in the Sun and Add It Up for a while at this point), this however was the first Femmes album I ever bought. I purchased it because of the song Fat (which I had heard in the film Super Size Me earlier that year). In the end I thought Fat was the only good song on the album. The second time around I heard two or three other songs I enjoyed but in general I still think this is the worst Violent Femmes album I own.

I appreciated the Album More but still don't love it:
Fanmail: 2000 - Fanmail was a pop punk band on Tooth & Nail records. I was a big fan of their first album The Latest Craze but was disappointed by their second (and last) album 2000. The only songs I liked were their Backstreet Boys cover and the closing acoustic song Other Side. This second time around I actually enjoyed the whole album but it's a pretty forgettable record and still lacks the catchy hooks found on their debut.

Audio Adrenaline: Bloom - Audio Adrenaline at one time was one of my favorite bands. As I started to shift away from Christian Music I became less and less interested in them. Eventually the only album I enjoyed by them was Underdog. I decided to revisit their 3rd album (their first as a straight up rock group), there's definitely a ton of songs that I still enjoy but in general the album still feels very cheesy to me.

Sum 41: Does This Look Infected? - Arguably their most popular album this has been one of my least favorite Sum 41 records. I'm not sure why since Still Waiting is one of my favorite songs from the band. Upon a second listening I found that I enjoy all the songs but much like the Fanmail record I think in general the songs are too forgettable.

The Juliana Theory: Emotion is Dead - I got into Juliana Theory when I found them on a tooth and nail comp. I purchase the record and found I only enjoyed the song I heard on the comp and never listened to it again. The only reason I decided to go back and relisten to this was in the last year I've fallen in love with their debut album Understanding this is a Dream. Relistening I found a ton of great songs but there's just as many bad songs. This would have been a great EP.

Outer Circle - Just like Juliana Theory I found Outer Circle on a tooth & nail comp and just like Julianna Theory I ended up only liking the song from that comp. I enjoyed this album more this time but like Sum 41 and Fanmail it's pretty forgettable. I literally listened to this album twice yesterday and the only song I remember is the one from the comp.

Shaded Red: Red Revolution - Shaded Red I discovered through a late night christian music video show I used to watch. I loved the song and found the album on sale at a concert. I ended up only liking maybe 3 or 4 songs on it. I recently joined a group called "90's Christian Recovery Group" and a question was posed of what albums do you still love from that time period. ALOT of people mentioned this album and I gave it another listen. I definitely enjoyed it more and will probably listen to it again sometime soon but in general there's just too many boring songs (4 of the 12 tracks to be exact).

Ben Folds Five: The Unauthorized Biography of Reinhold Messner - Ben Folds is one of my favorite musicians, I got into Folds around junior year of High School and bought the first 3 Ben Folds albums and his solo album in one month. I fell in love with 3 of those albums but was always disappointed by their 3rd (and for many years final) studio album. It had too much filler. When the album was good, it was incredible but still all these years later I still hate the random points where it drags. However I can't avoid the fact that I'll always revisit this album simply for Army, Narcolepsy and Lullabye which are three of the best songs Folds Ever wrote.

Social Distortion: White Light White Heat - I bought this album for one song and one song only. When the Angels sing. The first time I heard that song (on The Box of all places) I feel in love and saved up to buy the record. I don't know what my 12 year old brain wanted from this album, I guess I wanted 12 songs that sounded liked When The Angels Sing… technically I did get that but I guess I just genuinely wanted to hear When the Angels Sing 12 different times. This is actually a pretty great album. I'll probably revisit it soon but I still think that When The Angels Sing is the highlight of the whole album.

I really enjoyed the album more than I remembered:
Tom Lehrer: An Evening Wasted With Tom Lehrer - I got this album for free from an old man that used to come into the store I worked at in my local mall. I forget why, I think we were talking about old comedy stuff like Spike Jones and he told me I'd really like it. The only thing I remembered about the album was the song The Elements. Listening to it again I found myself laughing out loud multiple times. Tom Lehrer might have some of the best timed deliveries during his banter between songs.

Begin to End: Lonely EP - I actually knew I was gonna like this album still. It was a weird choice. Begin to End was a band my friends formed in college. I wanted to listen to it as if it wasn't an album from my friends band and just an album I bought. I still like the album a ton.

Hootie & The Blowfish: Musical Chairs - I bought this at Blockbuster (yea Blockbuster used to sell CDs) the year it came out (I want to say 1998) because I was obsessed with the song I Will Wait. In the end I only liked that song and never listened to it again. Now that I'm a little older and really like more folky music I can totally appreciate everything this album was trying to be.

Silverchair: Neon Ballroom - I got this album for my birthday the year it came out. Much like most people my age I loved the song Ana's Song (Open Fire) but what really made me love this album was the less popular single Anthem For The Year 2000. I was pretty disappointed in the rest of the album but now listening to it I feel like I just didn't like that it wasn't as heavy as their previous albums. To put it simply this is one of the most beautiful and sincere albums ever made.

Element 101: Stereo Girl - It took me a long time to get into Element 101 but when I finally listened to their debut album I was head over heels for it. I immediately bought their other albums and was completely let down. I'll be revisiting their 3rd album later I'm sure but I honestly can't understand why I was disappointed by this album, it's just as fun and catchy as their debut.

Rage Against the Machine: The Battle of Los Angeles - Much like Element 101 I have no clue why I disliked this album so much. It's probably still my least favorite of Rage's discography but when your worst album is still arguably a 4-star album theres' nothing to complain about.

Ghoti Hook: Two Years To Never - I can understand why I disliked this the first time around. Ghoti Hook was always a goofy pop punk band, however this record was a very serious album and also a straight up rock album. Much like how younger fans hate Blink's later work (only to look back at it in their 20's with a stronger appreciation… or maybe that was just me) I can get this album more. What Ghoti Hook was singing about in their mid-20's wasn't what a 15 year old wanted to hear… but at 28 this is exactly the type of album for me.

Jason LeVasseur: Watching the Girls Go By - My freshmen year in college I went to every live performance on campus. I loved Jason LeVasseur's set and bought both of his albums. From the first time I heard the song Steps on Saint Patricks I loved it. Maybe I loved it too much and held the rest of the album up to it's standard. It's the stand out track of this album but upon revisiting it I found about 6-7 songs that I loved (and found myself singing along with by the end of the song). Not sure how easy it is to find this record but if you can dig it up I recommend do so!

Love The Album Now
Lisa Loeb: Tails - As I become a fan of softer music more and more it's understandable that Lisa Loeb's bittersweet masterpiece was stand out to me. I bought this for two reasons Stay (the reason everyone bought the album) and Do You Sleep? (The single people forgot existed)… those were the only songs I ever listened to on the album I think. Now I listen to it and just hear 13 great songs about love and heartache.

Blind Melon - I always loved the song No Rain but what made me buy the record in High School was when I heard the song Change. Blind Melon was a weird group from the grunge era because they hardly classify as a grunge group to me, they're more a rock group with blues influence. I suppose that's why I disliked the album when I heard it. I either wanted an album that was all blues like Change or a grunge record with two slow tracks. However now I listen to this album and think "every song could have been a hit single." Much like Kurt Cobain and Brad Nowell I can't help but wonder what great songs we'll never know due to Shannon Hoon's tragedy death.

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