Thursday, May 7, 2015

I’ve got a couple of crates full of old vinyl albums that I haven’t listened to in years due to lack of equipment to play them. Over a period of about a year and a half I revisited each album on the internet or bought the CD and ranked the songs. I also recorded some brief thoughts, rated the album, and posted the results on Rolling Stone’s 100 Greatest Artists comment section. I’m recycling and categorizing/grouping the posts on this website.

Ok, so this one came after the “vinyl” days so I reviewed the CD.  And given the quakes in California I figured now would be a good time for the link. Natalie Merchant covers both ends of the “emotional” spectrum well. Some very uplifting songs and some very sad songs. On this album, “Wonder” and “Beloved Wife” respectively are good examples. Some good songs on this album but it’s a little heavy on the sad songs, some of which sound similar.
Scale of 1 to 10:  B +

1- Wonder
2- San Andreas Fault
3- Where I go
4- Beloved Wife
5- Carnival
6- River
7- Seven Years
8- I May Know the Word
9- Jealousy
10- The Letter
11- Cowboy Romance

Ok, so this one isn’t in the “vinyl” crate, but my CD is approaching the age of 20 so I decided to throw it in the mix. I suppose it depends on your personality whether or not you feel it’s healthy to occasionally wallow in self-pity. This would be the album if you should find such an occasion. Top to bottom, this album is excellent when put in that light. Anyone who was over the age of twelve at the time is aware of the influx of female songwriters toting acoustic guitars during the 90s. Sarah McLachlan is one of about three among that group that is worthy of HOF status.
Scale of 1 to 10:  A

1- Witness
2- Building a Mystery
3- Adia
4- Full of Grace
5- Angel
6- Last Dance
7- Sweet Surrender
8- Do What You Have to Do
9- Black and White
10- I Love You

Under the Table and Dreaming
The Dave Matthews Band gets dismissed. Under what premise I’m not sure – I wouldn’t consider them “pop”. This is another album that isn’t exactly in the crates but my cassette (which would eventually be replaced with a CD) is old enough to qualify. Except for “What Would You Say” I was lukewarm on this one when I first bought it (shortly after its release). Their sound was too different at the time, I guess. Consequently it got limited play in my “primetime” rotation. But about ten years later I bought it on CD, threw it in the car, and it grew on me as I listened while driving. In a big way. Solid all the way through but no one “great” song so it just crosses the threshold of the highest tier. The first four songs on my list are interchangeable followed closely by five and six.
Scale of 1 to 10:  A –

1- What Would You Say
2- The Best of What’s Around
3- Typical Situation
4- Ants Marching
5- Satellite
6- Pay For What You Get
7- Lover Lay Down
8- #34
9- Dancing Nancies
10- Warehouse
11- Jimi Thing
12- Rhyme & Reason

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