New music releases for the week of 05/15/2012.
Web2Carz Senior Writer
Published: May 15th, 2012
ore sad news in the rock world this week, as Donald “Duck” Dunn, bass player for Booker T. & The M.G.s (and also The Blues Brothers, Sam & Dave, Wilson Pickett, and others) passed away at the age of 70. Sadly, as more and more rock musicians reach septua-and octogenarian age, rock deaths will be a much more frequent occurrence, making that mythical band in heaven more kick-ass by the day.
Best Coast / The Only Place
THEY SAY: New album from low-fi garage surf band from California.
WE SAY: Rock critics and indie rock fans love to elevate mediocre bands to ridiculous levels, often mistaking lazy derivativeness for clever irony. Such is the case with Best Coast, a band that combines the worst aspects of The Beach Boys with the worst aspects of garage-rock-indie-trendy genre du jour.
Willie Nelson / Heroes
THEY SAY: Hundred-millionth or so album from country music legend, featuring contributions from many country luminaries.
WE SAY: One doesn’t really expect a new Willie Nelson album to be good, one merely marvels at the man’s tenacity and his ability to continually write songs despite (or because of) his near constant intake of cannabis sativa. Williams is joined by such disparate artists as Kris Kristofferson, Andre Williams, Lucas Nelson (his son), and yes, Snoop Dogg.
Conor Oberst and the Mystic Valley Band / One Of My Kind
(Team Love Records)
THEY SAY: Live recording of Oberst and his band, available as a CD and a live DVD.
WE SAY: As his folkie alter-ego, Bright Eyes, Oberst made some of the most middling, overrated folk music to come out of the early 2000s' so-called “freak folk” movement. But Oberst has never been freaky, and that’s his problem. He’s a mainstream artist working in a semi-underground genre. He does it competently, but there’s not much originality.
Lisa Marie Presley / Storm and Grace
THEY SAY: New album from the former Mrs. Michael Jackson, who just happens to be the daughter of one of the most famous people in the history of the world.
WE SAY: It can’t be easy making music in the shadow of your ridiculously well-loved dad, Elvis, but Lisa Marie gives it her all. Her new album, produced by the brilliant T-Bone Burnett is a strong collection of downbeat middle-of-the-road rock. Not the best thing ever, but pretty decent stuff.
Tenacious D / Rize of the Fenix
THEY SAY: The D is back, after the spectacular failure of their film The Pick of Destiny.
WE SAY: What does it mean to be a joke band when the culture is littered with so many joke bands—some purposely joking, some not so much? If you’re Tenacious D, it means you try to step up your game, musically. Rize of the Fenix features Foo Fighter Dave Grohl on drums, and with songs like “Low Hanging Fruit,” “They Fucked Our Asses,” and the title track, Tenacious D proves it's still as aware of its own ridiculousness, and the ridiculousness of rock, as ever.