Today, CW San Diego correspondent Ryan Bradford joins us again to offer his two cents on the singles that sent him over the moon.---
"Racer X" from Japandroids
I saw Japandroids in October and they played this Big Black cover (apparently, it's in their repertoire along with Mclusky's "To Hell With Good Intentions". The cover itself is good, but hearing it gave me an exciting, new appreciation of Steve Albini's long-gone Big Black. Japandroids trade the original's psycho-sexuality for speed on this recorded Daytrotter version. http://hypem.com/track/993908
"Smoke" from Lucero's 1372 Overton Park
I couldn't help but swell with pride when 1372 Overton Park came out. Unlike a lot of artists these days, Lucero's career has been based off paying dues, hard work, constant touring and genuine fan-appreciation - and their major label debut, a culmination of that hard work, is their finest to date. The album's opener "Smoke" is like a thank-you note, a slow burner that both rewards fans with a lovely ballad and promises to take them to exciting places (via the album's welcome horn-section).
"Bay of Pigs" Destroyer Bay of Pigs EP
I'll be the first to say that I have musical ADD, but I'll also be the first to say that at a staggering 14 minutes, "Bay of Pigs" is one of the best songs I've heard in a long time. The retro-ambient is pretty enough, but once it hits the 5-minute mark, the song kicks up up and doesn't let go. People throw out the term "musical journey" a lot when discussing long music; this is a rare case where the journey is worth it. "I'd Do Anything for Love" this ain't.
Guilty Pleasure Track: "Hatefuck" The Bravery
As if to prove that they're not softies, the radio/ballad-friendly Bravery put out this caroonishly-grotesque single with and a "raw" companion video to boot. It's such a train-wreck, but you can't look away.
Jamie's Picks of the Day:
I love the Flaming Lips and I'm sure eventually this entire album will wind up as one of my all-time faves. For now, only a few tracks bowl me over with each listen, including this here number:
Screaming Females managed to both blow up and operate under the radar this year. Expect to hear more of them in 2010. This is my fave track off of their 2009 release, Power Move.