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Wilco- Schmilco album review

Written by Staff. Posted in Music, Reviews

Wilco – Schmilco
By Joe Swymeler

schmilcoSchmilco is the 10th album by Wilco. It was released on September 9th of this year on Dbpm records. For everyone who has never heard of Wilco, they’re a Chicago based alternative rock band led by lead singer/songwriter Jeff Tweedy. Tweedy was once a member of the band Uncle Tupelo in the late 80’s and early 90’s, but formed Wilco out of Uncle Tupelo in 1994. Wilco is most well known for their 2002  album Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, which is widely known as one of the best albums of the early 2000s and maybe alt. rock in general.

As I mentioned before, Wilco has been around since 1994, and they have a pretty large catalogue of albums over the past 22 years. Usually by this point in time, bands that have been around for that long aren’t as good as they used to be. Recently I’ve read some articles about Wilco, with one of the biggest points that comes up being that Wilco has become a “dad rock” band in a way. I think that’s interesting because usually the term “dad rock” refers to bands that your dad would listen to. You wouldn’t think an alternative rock band like Wilco would be categorized within the same grouping as The Eagles, Led Zeppelin, and The Rolling Stones, would you? Well in a way I can see it, being that most of the members of the band are in their mid to late-40s and Wilco has been around for quite a while. However, while other bands that have been around for a good 20 years tend to get a little stale, this is not the case for Wilco, and certainly for Schmilco either.

Borrowing the album name inspiration off of Harry Nilsson’s album Schmillson, Schmilco is a delightful album that will please first time listeners and longtime Wilco fans alike. Pretty much the whole album has an overall acoustic, folky, and softer sound to it, with heavy use of acoustic guitars and other simplistic instruments. It has a very easygoing and almost nostalgic tone to it, with Tweedy telling stories of his past as well as his family. It also has straightforward lyrics that makes the album very easy and approachable to listen to. It’s not as complex as some of their other releases in the past, but that isn’t very much of a problem. My personal favorite tracks are “Quarters,” which is a nice song with a great fingerpicking style which I love. “Normal American Kids” which is the first song on the album, is a simple tune with what I think are the best lyrics on the album. It’s an instantly classic and beautiful song that was a great choice for an album opener. Other standout tracks include “Locator,” “Someone to Lose,” “Just say Goodbye,” and “If I ever was a Child.” Overall Schmilco was an excellent album that I enjoyed a lot. I would recommend this album to people who love folk music and nostalgic songwriting.

 

Bon Iver’s 22, A Million: Album Review

Written by Staff. Posted in Disc Jockeys, Music, Reviews

22, A MillionBON IVER: 22, A MILLION – Jagjaguwar

By Wes Davis

    Ranging from broken acoustics layered with harmonious vocal chords of “29 #Strafford APTS”, reminding us of For Emma, Forever Ago, to the well produced and distorted autotune of “10 d E A T h b R E a s T ⚄ ⚄” building off of Bon Iver’s self titled album, 22, A Million fills you with the raw emotion that Bon Iver is known for and instrumentation that further secures the band’s place in history. After five years of anticipation Bon Iver teased us with the release of three singles: “22 (OVER S∞∞N),”  “33 ‘God.’”, and “10 d E A T h b R E a s T ⚄ ⚄” to then release 22, A Million. This album doesn’t have the seamless flow that Bon Iver produced for their self titled album, however, 22 A Million starts similarly as ‘Bon Iver’ with track 1 building and dropping to allow track 2 leeway to contrast to the prior with distorted bass and percussion. The majority of the songs incorporate Justin Vernon’s (band leader) pitched-shifted voice, such as 715 – CR∑∑KS, where it is Vernon’s voice a capella, autotuned and chorded. The autotune and highly processed digital sounds echo that of early 2000’s but strewn across Vernon’s heartfelt and anxious lyrics and melodies reach the level intimacy only known from For Emma, Forever Ago.

    Much like in Vernon’s experience of isolation when writing his 2008 album, 22 A Million was written on a Greek amidst many panic attacks. Track 1 reflects this early stage of writing, while the entire album mirrors his anxious and ethereal lyrics with the scarce and absorbing melodies. 22, A Million is not the classic idea of set structured songs but an interpretation of feelings and emotions thrown together with inharmonious sounds and noises, such as “21 Moon Water” which fades pristinely into “8 (circle)”. From there the album closes with a gospel feel and banjo riff in  “___45_____,” showing that Bon Iver holds its folk roots of For Emma, Forever Ago and finally “000000 Million” gives us bittersweet chords, a familiar feel that we know and love.

    

 

Top Ten – Wes Davis

Written by WCYT Staff. Posted in Lists, Reviews

WAVVES – V

Written by WCYT Staff. Posted in Music, Reviews

 

 

The alternative American rock band Wavvewavves-vs has recently released a new album titled “V” as of October 2nd. “V” is a collection of upfront song titles like “Way Too Much” and “My Head Hurts”, with equally as raw sounds from guitar and vocals. Nathan Williams, Wavves’ lead singer and songwriter, Takes no time to perfect his vocal melody, his sounds are real and organic. He uses combination of shouts and moans for a gritty alt rock feel, keeping “V” honest and upbeat. This album is an ideal soundtrack for a road trip with friends down to San Diego California, where the band first originated in 2008. “V” engulfs you in youthful rock music with a carelessly scratch guitar and drum banging.  An easy favorite track from this album would be “Heavy Metal Detox”, standing out from the rest of their messier melodies. If you are at all interested in the band Wavves or their new album “V”, they are currently touring in the UK, but will be stopping by in St. Louis Missouri in early December. Also check out some of their other recent albums made within the last 5 years, such as “Afraid of Heights” and “King of the Beach”.

Protomartyr – The Agent Intellect

Written by WCYT Staff. Posted in Music, Reviews

protomartyr-agent-intellect

Protomartyr is an American post-punk band formed in 2008 in Detroit, and is a seasoned band with 3 full length albums and 1 EP to date. The Agent Intellect, their newest album to date was released on October 9th 2015. Protomartyr keeps their cool and collected tone throughout this album as well as on their last to, so nothing new has really changed for the band. Joe Casey, the lead singer of Protomartyr still talks about his verses more than he sings, which is not a terribly bad thing. It’s helped the band grow and mature, and be fairly different overall. Not to many songs stood out in the album to me as being interesting, or wow, but the ones that did stand out were just that. Songs that really stood out to me as individual tracks on The Agent Intellect with The Devil in His Youth and Pontiac 87. While the most riveting song on the album has to be Cowards Starve, which really shows insight into the bands career as a whole, with lead vocalist Joe Casey putting in a real “I don’t care, or couldn’t care less about anything, anymore” vibe that strives to be a very depressing tone. Each song buzzes on to the next, with fairly nice transitions in between to keep a listener interested. I also thought that Dope Cloud was a pretty special song on the album as well, which seems like a very well written poem, brought through with a slur of words and moments of desperation and sadness that roll together with verses harmonizing on top of that. In the end, I would give The Agent Intellect a solid 7 out of ten. I really did enjoy some of the songs that the band had produced, but a majority of them I just found to be too oversimplified. Although, the songs I did enjoy were outstanding, and sounded more like a deep introspective poem that I just wanted to read over and over again until my eyes exploded. The overall vibe that this album gives off is very mysterious, unexpected, and at times soothing. I hope the best for Protomartyr and I do hope to hear more of what the band creates in the future.

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