Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Nirvana - Nevermind

Although this may be an old album since its being reissued for a 20 year anniversary edition it seemed fitting the review it. Nevermind was the album that brought the American grunge band into the public eye and stormed mainstream music and its very obvious why. Smells Like Teen Spirit opens the album as the biggest and most well known song from the band, and even though you'll get the hardcore fans saying how its 'not their best' its still an incredible song to listen to. In Bloom follows opening with heavy chords and a loud bad-ass drum beat. The sound throughout the song is so simple yet so easy to get hooked to and play on repeat. The guitar solo isn't so fast that it finishes before it starts but it fits so well into the song and causes such a reaction that I kinda want to go into London and smash up some buildings. The second most recognized song Come As You Are changes the heavy head banging style from the last two songs with but Kurt Cobain's voice still sounds as raw without sounding like he's shouting. On the strength of the first three songs alone, the rest of the album could just be the sound of some one shitting into the microphone and it would still be a masterpiece. Breed needs to be played on full volume, with some huge fucking speakers although the guitar and bass sound to murky which hides the progression of the song. Lithium has a mix of a simple guitar and drum pattern with Kurt proving more variety with his voice but it is long before they reach the chorus. The lyrics are blunt and honest "I like it I'm not gonna crack" talks about when Kurt was given Lithium to stabilize his mood by a christian family he was living with. Polly features an acoustic guitar and vocal over-dubbing broadening the style of the album. Stay Away is possibly one of the angry-ist sounding song sound with distorted vocals giving a rough texture where the guitar seems to blend in with the guitar. Endless, Nameless interchanges from Kurt screaming with messy drums and guitars to a clean guitar riff and drums. This is an album you can play over and over again and still hear new things. The brilliant producing by Butch Vig on first listen can make it sound like it was recorded on a 99p cassette they found in a gutter, but its only when you really listen, you realize how absolutely amazing this album is.

Rating: 10/10
Song to buy: (Apart from the whole album)
In Bloom


For fans of: Everyone and Everything

Tuesday, 9 August 2011

Cube (1997)

For a movie with such an original plot, its really a shame how they pulled it off. The basic story line is, seven strangers wake up in a strange cube system with no recollection of how or why they are there. It doesn't take long for them to realize that some of the cubes that are connected via doors are trapped with various covert lethal devices however these are cryptically marked. The characters we meet include a cop who takes the role of the main character. In pretty much every movie there is whats known as the protagonist, the main person who the audience can relate to in some way and support throughout the movie. The problem with Cube is, the audience never really likes any of the characters, because we never really know anything about them. The main guy starts as the leader and quite a reasonable rationalistic person who just wants to get out so he can see his kids. As the film progresses he turns into a total asshole the audience hates him. The other characters suddenly change personality from a cynical selfish office worker to a likable selfless man which just confuses and bewilders. When we get introduced to the mentally handicapped man, he becomes a nuisance to the group but by the end he's the audiences favorable character. He can't be the protagonist in the film as we can't relate to him in any way and it takes half the movie before we even meet him. Where the film goes wrong again is the reasoning. Throughout the entire film the audience desperately wants to know why they are there and who's responsible. Various ideas are thrown around but the only real reason they can find is that there is no reason. I admit it must be hard to find a reason as to why some one would build a gigantic structure then put a bunch of strangers in but its just lazy film writing not to give something. The great thing about this film however is the suspense created, it fails at being really a horror film as there's no element of realism grounded in the film, but even when they move from cube to cube the movie creates a perfect effect which a lot of films fail or come short of doing, with a movie like the Cube it had to be done right and they did it pretty spot on. Don't get me wrong this isn't a bad movie but I couldn't find myself loving the movie and felt a little let down by how promising the plot was.

Plot: 10/10
Acting/Characters: 3/10
Effects: 6/10
Ending: 5/10
Overall: 6/10


Monday, 8 August 2011

Foster the People - Torches

Irritating labeled as 'Indies next big thing' Foster the People have grown from a few song circulating the internet to adverts, radio and festival slots. Their debut Torches begins with Helena Beat a dancy electronic engulfed song, it sounds promising but the chorus vocals make it sound rather messy. Next comes Pumped Up Kicks which is the lead single on the album, they manage to create a brilliant sound when moving from verse to chorus. The lyrics aren't exactly poetic genius anywhere throughout the album however they never really stoop to the 'Swagger Jagger' level and to be honest, in a feel good summer album you don't exactly want your perspectives on the universe mind fucked out of recognition. The album continues without huge amounts of variations in sound but enough to stop it from sounding same-y. Colour on the Walls (Don't Stop) seems perfect for singing along at festivals even though Marcus Fosters vocals sound a tad winy in the chorus. Waste is possibly the best song musically on the album but also the worst lyrically "I'll help you see it through cos I just really wanna be with you" sounds like it was pulled from a Justin Bieber album. Houdini is deservedly the best on the album with a big sound that never sounds messy or simple but retains a great depth in the sound. Overall its not mind blowing stuff lyrically but its undoubtedly perfect for the summer which has to make you think if this band can only make summer songs but that review will have to wait for their next album.

Score: 7.5/10
Song to buy: Houdini
For fans of: MGMT, Phoenix, Two Door Cinema Club