Tuesday, January 06, 2004

Mini-review-ish odds & ends:

I really, really fucking hate Black Eyed Peas (the hip-hop group, not the dish, mind). I mean, "Where Is the Love" is enough of a travesty, and was so ubiquitous in '03 to make me hate it tenfold over what I might've had I been able to avoid it. But good Lord, the followup, "Shut Up," might actually be worse. It almost makes me long for the artistry of City High. Or even a comeback by Wyclef. [I feel safe making that statement, as I don't expect either return to really happen.]

Yes, I know that Kenny Chesney's hack-ish, and that he basically has two songs: uptempo and ballad. [The notable exceptions, i.e. songs that actually stand out 'cause they've got something, are "Young" and the perfectly-titled "She Thinks My Tractor's Sexy."] Yes, I know that his new "There Goes My Life" is a bit hackneyed. But it's got a twist you don't see coming - at least, I didn't - and that gets me every time. [His singing's improving, too, with a bit more nuance in his pallette.] So sue me - like my Grandma used to say, you can't get blood from a turnip.

The Diary of Alicia Keys gets better with each listen, expanding on the promise of Songs in A Minor. And "Heartburn" has got to be the least-Timbaland-sounding Timbaland production I've ever heard. [That's a compliment.]

Got my Mom Michael McDonald's Motown album for Christmas, and you know, it's actually pretty solid. McDonald's smoove tenor pairs well with most of his selections - I guess Motown's the new songbook, eh? If anything, he plays it a bit too safe - would love to hear him take on "Cloud Nine" or "When Did You Stop Loving Me, When Did I Stop Loving You," but I guess that's a bit outside of his target demo. Probably a solid B of a record.

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