Oscar Round-up

Had you going there for a second, huh? No, this blog will not be mentioning the Oscars in any way. Nope, I won’t mention the horrible mash-up during the best song nominees presentation, nor the bizarre attempt to revive the corpse of the musical. That would just be insulting to your intelligence. I mean we can all think for ourselves, we don’t need any corporate oversight committee telling us where we should get our entertainment. So here are some alternative viewpoints on what’s good in music. Now, I have to get to the movie theatre…to…see…Slumdog Millionaire…yes, master…must obey…

Mark Olson & Gary Louris – Ready For The Flood – *** – Cool to have these fellows back, and it’s great to hear them together, each adds so much to the other. The songs themselves, are good, but don’t really reach their full potential, some sound too alike, and there’s not a lot of variety.

The Soundtrack Of Our Lives – Communion – *** – This band certainly likes to record a bunch of songs. Their second consecutive double-disc collection, it is good, but you get the same feeling at the end that it’s a bit much. You can find plenty of songs that probably didn’t need to be here, and for all of it, there is not really one really good takeaway song that really captures the magic I felt from some of their earlier material.

Salim Nourallah – Ciphers From Snowing – *** – Good record from Salim, great, mid-tempo pop, definitely an energetic step down from the last album, but still good.

Fiction Family – Fiction Family – *** – Fairly good record from members of Switchfoot and Nickel Creek…two bands I love. The result is mixed. There are some great tracks, such as the lead-off track and a few others. But some go on a bit long, and are not very memorable. Still, it is not an unpleasant record.

Bishop Allen – Grrr… – *** – More from Bishop Allen. And it’s clear they are still good at what they do. It is an enjoyable, interesting record. There are a lot of bands around that kind of sound like this, but I think Bishop Allen is one of the best right now.

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