Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Quick new release hits - Angels and Airwaves, Noel Gallagher

So I listened to the new Noel Gallagher self-titled record (Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds) and it was pretty decent. I think bands like Oasis and Pixies are always going to be a "the whole is more than the sum of its parts" sort of thing. Noel is always going to do his thing, and I think he's a good songwriter. He doesn't have the most dynamic voice or stage presence, but he gets by, you know? The song I liked most off the record was "The Good Rebel". I dug the tune & vocals & harmonies. "Dream On" is also a good listen. "AKA...What a Life!" sounds like a lite version of his Chemical Brothers collab. It's not that the songs aren't catchy - I'm not sayin' that. But if you've been paying attention to the Noel-fronted tracks during the Oasis years, I don't think you'll be surprised by anything here, except maybe "The Good Rebel". Whether that's good or bad is a decision for you to make, right?


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The new Angels & Airwaves album is called Love, Pt. 2. The band gave away Love, Pt. 1 last spring in what has been a long run-up to the release of the movie Love. (Part 1 doesn't seem to be available for free anymore) While listening to Pt. 2, it struck me that I wasn't hearing anything that was grabbing me. I really dug the first three AVA albums with all their anthemic bombast. It was especially surprising to hear from one of the Blink-182 brats (and I mean that in the best possible way about them).

Listening today, though, I really like the opening song "Saturday Love". They've really got that U2 "Where the Streets Have No Name" chiming echo guitar effect down.

There's definitely a mood of stretching themselves it feels like, though. Tracks like "Moon As My Witness" feel different somehow. There are a more atmospheric outros/intros, but I suppose there have been those on other albums as well. This record is similar, but different. I'm sure that's helpful.

I'd recommend the other three AVA records before this one (We Don't Need to Whisper, I-Empire and Love, Pt. 1), and highly. But this one's not bad, just not quite as inspired.

I *am* looking forward to seeing the movie, though. It sounds like a cool concept.

ThePunkSite.com has my favorite interview with AVA, where the interviewer zeros in on the progression of the themes of the first three albums. I think it's really cool when there's a connection between a fan and artist like that.





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