Thursday, May 01, 2008

Counting Crows - Saturday Nights & Sunday Mornings

How can a band (Counting Crows) honestly think they can string their fans along into thinking every album after their first (and best) is going to be as good as that original (August and Everything After; 1993), when each subsequent release is consistently disappointing? Basically, Counting Crows have been cashing checks on credibility from 15 YEARS ago. I know they are great live and they have a catalog of songs that is large enough, and good enough to get away with not putting out solid albums. But it's pretty disgraceful in many ways. With each album, there is a glimmer of hope that the band can catch lightning in a bottle again and produce a gem of an album equal to the one made over a decade ago. I'm not old enough to say I was a Counting Crows fan from when they started, but it's hard to deny that August... is one of the least dated albums of the 90's. It's really hard not to like this band, even after some of the crap songs they've put out because you (and me) cling to the ones that are awesome and totally overshadow the shitty ones.

With all this said, it's been 6 long years that Counting Crows fans have been waiting for a studio album to counteract the acidic taste left over from the pop-heavy Hard Candy (2002). Thankfully Saturday Nights & Sunday Mornings assuages some of that feeling. It's been long enough to mostly forget the missteps and remember the nostalgia the band evokes from their fans. The new album tries desperately to regain that credibility that was previously lost. Unfortunately, there are few certifiable "hits" on this record. It's better than the last release, but it had to be right? They couldn't keep going downward, right? They had to try and get back to what they did best, right? Well, some songs give fans just enough hope to think, "Hey, maybe they can put out a record as good as their first couple in the coming years." STOP. Stop thinking this. It's not going to happen in your lifetime. What you can look forward to is more albums that are pretty alright, and maybe even decidedly mediocre. This album is in one of those categories, and I would classify it as, "just okay." If someone asked me if they should buy the record, I would offer to let them borrow my "copy" and listen before buying. It sees them return to form on a few tracks but something is just off. Normally a strong lyricist, Adam Duritz is really narcissistic on a few tracks that is really off-putting after a couple listens. Overall, Counting Crows fans may be duped into thinking one of their favorite bands is "back." So, if you like being strung along, go for it, but I'm done setting the bar so high.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Coachella - Day 3

Coachella...the hottest desert party outside of Dubai returned this past weekend to Indio, CA. Luckily, I was able to go for at least one day yesterday (Sunday) thanks to my cousin and a trusty Main Stage wristband. I know it wasn't the "best" day lineup-wise, but whatever. You just have to know where to look. I got some sweet pictures, and great video. Enjoy...there will be more to come as it's all uploaded.

the Cool Kids:

I'm From Barcelona:

Holy Fuck:

Does It Offend You, Yeah?: