Album Reviews
by Tom Beninate
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Artist: Adele
Album:
25
Year Released: 2015
Rating:

Adele got a lot of songwriting help on this CD. But these tracks simply do not carry the weight that her previous record did. Vocally, she aced it (in her own unique emotional way). As usual, either the songs hook you in or they don't.
Key Songs: "Hello", "Love In The Dark".
Artist: Ought
Album:
Sun Coming Down
Year Released: 2015
Rating:

These guys wrote a number of crisp, original riffs and then layered subpar verses onto them. Their dissonant guitar approach is effective buy way overdone. This band ought to get a better producer.
Key Songs: "Beautiful Blue Sky".
Artist: Dead Weather
Album:
Dodge And Burn
Year Released: 2015
Rating:

You get a lot of cool riffs and a fair amount of originality on this record. Their sound is raw garage. Unfortunately, there is a hint of goofiness that makes the atmosphere less serious.
Key Songs: "I Feel Love", "Three Dollar Hat", "Impossible Winner".
Artist: Chvrches
Album:
Every Open Eye
Year Released: 2015
Rating:

This CD gives you a representation of this past decade of pop music. By now, this genre has been so overworked. Still, this band's polish comes through with a great mix. The tracks are generally good but there is nothing unique.
Key Songs: "Keep You On My Side".
Artist: Ryan Adams
Album:
1989
Year Released: 2015
Rating:

Taylor Swift (and friends) wrote, recorded and released the CD 1989 in 2014. Ryan Adams took that album, rearranged it and this is the result. Unfortunately, Adams sanded down the original polish and dulled Swift's excitement. Too bad.
Key Songs: "Style".
Artist: Rihanna
Album:
Anti
Year Released: 2016
Rating:

Successful commercial albums normally contain hits, great songs, fine performances and originality. This record contains none of the above. Rihanna can hit home runs, but here she's swinging to get on base.
Key Songs: "Kiss It Better", "Never Ending", "Close To You".
Artist: Loretta Lynn
Album:
Full Circle
Year Released: 2015
Rating:

Once again, Loretta Lynn shows us how to do traditional country music. This is not about the latest top 40 fads and trends. This is about heartfelt living and singing. There is a mix of Lynn's writing, other songwriters, and traditional country tunes. This is simply a good album from the beginning to the very end. .
Key Songs: *Too Many To List*.
<prev ... next> ... review index ... page 25
Artist: Sia
Album:
This Is Acting
Year Released: 2016
Rating:

Overall, the songs on this album are not bad. But with a lack of hooks and originality, it is hard to differentiate between the tracks. Too many verses and choruses sound similar. Sia has written better music in the past.
Key Songs: "Alive".
Artist: Elton John
Album:
Wonderful Crazy Night
Year Released: 2016
Rating:

Even the once great Elton John cannot make this average set of songs shine. John and his band puts on an excellent performance on several tracks. However, these mainly hookless tunes were not relevant 40 years ago, let alone today.
Key Songs: "Guilty Pleasure", "Tambourine".
Artist: Waxachatchee
Album:
Ivy Tripp
Year Released: 2015
Rating:

This record needs work. Although there are some interesting concepts, it is not enough for a full CD. Too many of these tracks share the same attributes.
Key Songs: "Air".