New Music

Oh yeah.

The Flaming Lips’ Embryonic is the most fantastic thing they’ve done, alongside The Soft Bulletin and that bitchin’ song from At War With The Mystics (“The W.A.N.D.”). I have a great amount of enthusiasm for this album, and I am not one of those Flaming Lips people that shake themselves silly to “Do You Realize??” and slobber at pinwheels and rainbows. Still, if I saw “Watching the Planets” (from the new album) performed live, I would probably tremble, fecal confetti erupting, gloriously.

Seriously, I can count the amount of times I’ve even made it through the entirety of a Flaming Lips album on one hand, but this, this I will have on constant rotation for some time, I think.

More importantly, though, is the simultaneous release of this gem:

Being Baroness’ Blue Record, which I have been listening to constantly for the past month or so. (It leaked some time ago. Fear not, as I’ve pre-ordered the 2-disc set. It comes with a t-shirt!) This is music that will suck out eyeballs and melt brains. It’s better prog-metal than “Crack the Skye,” which released earlier this year. It’s better than Baroness’ previous effort, Red Album, which opened with “Rays on Pinion,” now one of my favorite songs, period. It is fucking good.

There is an amazing breadth to Blue Record, a wonderful oceanic feel to the whole thing as it ebbs and rises. There are high energy rock-outs (“The Sweetest Curse,” “A Horse Called Golgotha”), sludgey, suffocating compositions (“Swollen and Halo,” “The Gnashing”), and then, as if to appear from nowhere, eyes of the storm like “Steel that Sleeps the Eye” and “Blackpowder Orchard.” Baroness is a monumentally flexible band, and naysayers who deny metal the ability to be anything but loud riffs and drum-slamming owe themselves the Blue Record.

And I also checked out this stomach-turning thing, you know, because it leaked:

The damn thing is packed with great artists like Grizzly Bear, Bon Iver, St. Vincent, Lykke Li, and Amadou & Mariam, which is baffling given than it’s fucking New Moon. (Twlight may genuinely be one of the most acidic, horrible films I’ve ever seen, and drove me and my Robert Pattinson-eager girlfriend to drink ourselves silly just to plod through the miserable, miserable “story.”) Still, I listened to Thom Yorke’s “Hearing Damage,” and it’s actually pretty awesome. Sounds kind of like sinister chiptunes. Too bad I have to stare at that embarrassing album cover whenever I queue it up in iTunes. Alas.


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