Our music review archives go back 20 years now. In that time various library staff members have reviewed a huge range of material, across every genre in our collection and, since we used to have multiple copies of titles, we still hold a lot of these items in out off-site storage facility.
Due to a catalogue upgrade the links from our old, archived HTML Music & Film web-pages no longer worked, so they became unavailable to browse some time ago. However, since from February 1st of this year we are running a one year trial where all CDs will be free to borrow, we thought it was a good time to go back and revisit some of these old reviews for a new series called ‘CDs From The Vault’.
Back to black / Winehouse, Amy
Winehouse’s debut album ‘Frank’ was a somewhat patchy Jazz/R&B affair, but her latest album hit big with critics, especially in the U.K, and won the Brit award for Best Female, beating out strong competition from Lily Allen & Corinne Bailey Rae. Her Macy Gray-esque voice may not appeal to everyone and the album, while touted as influenced by 50’s and 60’s Girl Groups and Motown sounds somewhat forced in places, trying to deliberately emulate a classic sound rather than achieving it naturally (like Corrine Bailey Rae with her original material, or Joss Stone on ‘The Soul Sessions’ with cover songs). Still it has some good songs with some complex takes on life and relationships like the title track and ‘You know I’m no good’. (Mark)
No, you c’mon / Lambchop
The flip-side to accompanying CD ‘Aw C’mon’ finds Lambchop’s typically allusive, cryptic lyrics immersed in Glen Campbell, strings, chomping piano and bright, poundy instrumentals. ‘The Problem’ is an ironic title for one of Wagner’s least pessimistic takes on the chance of love yet, whilst ‘Shang a Dang Dang’ reiterating chug-title infectiously rants. ‘The Gusher’, another instrumental slows to a crawl and playfully uses the ‘Mary Tyler Moore’ theme song, ‘we’re gonna make it after all’. This is Lambchop at it’s lightest, in fact a million light years from previous downer-but-still-excellent release ‘Is a Woman’. Wagner, on the inner sleeve opines optimistic. ‘YOU ARE IMPORTANT BE GOOD TO EACH OTHER.’ L (Monty)
The life pursuit / Belle and Sebastian
A great indie pop album from these Scots. Song highlights the upbeat ‘Sukie in the Graveyard’ and ‘The Blues Are Still Blue’. (Richard)