LxListening: Catch Up Time

catch up time, baseball, up, time, clock
So many good albums are released over the course of a calendar year that we don’t even pretend to be thorough in our coverage of current music.  Its even harder for someone like me to absorb the amount of music I would like to, whereas Wes and Todd are human encyclopedias of all things past, present and future music.  Wes in particular is usually able to listen to an album once and form an opinion I usually agree with, but would take me upwards of five or six listens to form.

Due to my mongoloid nature of absorbing new music, it often takes me weeks, or even months to decide that I like an album, sometimes putting it on the shelf for quite some time after a first listen, only to give it one more shot and come around on it.  Due to my deficiency, I would like to bring to you a song from five albums that I’m pretty sure we won’t be able to review in whole, as a sign of respect that they are more than worthy of review.  Some have been released this week, some are weeks old, and some months, but all these artists are worthy of note.  Let these five tracks be your Friday Sizzurp.
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LxListening: Music from Treme

treme wallpaper

To be honest with you, I wasn’t completely sold on the first season of Treme, David Simon’s follow-up creation to his smash hit The Wire.  The acting and shooting was pristine, but the pace moved at such a crawl it was hard to become engrossed in so many characters whose story-lines were going nowhere quickly.  The real star of the show was the city itself and the musical scene captured by Simon and his crew.  While watching an expose on the styles and history of the music of Louisiana is interesting in and of itself, it simply wasn’t cutting it as a compelling dramatic tent-pole on HBO.

So, when I finally got around to starting season two, I was not at all excited.  It was kind of like watching one of those Academy Award nominees that you know is going to be worth watching, but is a little hard to pump yourself up for.  Surprisingly, by the end of the first few episodes of season two, I found myself hopelessly caught up in the characters Simon set up throughout season one.  The musical backdrop is still there in full force, the stories of each character take center stage, giving the show a more human feel.  With all this drama, the music of the show snuck up on me and I am now simply obsessed with everything roots, blues, folk, jazz, and hip-hop that New Orleans and Louisiana have made a mark on.

I bring to you today five of my choice favorites I’ve discovered throughout season two of Treme.
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LxListening: Hip Hop Anonymous

hip hop anonymous t-shirt

Until the Killer Mike’s R.A.P. Music (which I gave a smashing review to) was released a few weeks ago, I had been thoroughly underwhelmed with what hip-hop had to offer so far in 2012.  Then El-P, who produced R.A.P. Music along with Killer Mike, released his own album, Cancer 4 Cure, which gave another shot of adrenaline to the rap game (and Todd reviewed on Wednesday).  Now, Black Hippie member Ab-Soul has dropped a bit of a bomb of his own with Control System (which I hope to review next week).  This is a veritable bump, set, spike from the previously lagging rap game in a month-long span.  Unfortunately, David Banner was not able to hold serve with his release last week, but I decided to include one of the better songs from his disappointing Sex, Drugs & Video Games, along with a classic to top it all off.  So let’s just say the hip-hop is flowing again, I’m off the wagon, and there are no more Hip-Hop Anonymous meetings needed for the severe withdrawal I had been going through.

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LxListening: Girls

songs about girls, Neil Diamond

In all actuality, this Friday’s edition of LxListening contains songs that have “girl(s)” in the title, instead of just songs about girls.  This theme could also probably have innumerable sequels because as we all know, musicians’ favorite lyrical subject is romantic entanglements with the opposite sex.  I decided also to select one “girl” song from each of the past 6 decades for your listening enjoyment.  So whether girls are black, drunk, or fat-bottomed, they all deserve a song.  Enjoy!

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LxListening: I’m a Wu-Tang Man

wu-tang clan, wu tang, symbol, logo

For some reason I have found myself listening to the work of the members of The Wu-Tang clan a lot recently.  Mind you, I have not been listening to any collaborative Wu-Tang albums, but instead the solo works of the various members, which is quite an overwhelming endeavor.  I really like Wu-Tang, but it is difficult to sift through some of the muck and mire that has been by the various members over the years.  For instance, say I wanted to get a greater base of knowledge on Inspectah Deck’s body of work.  I have to then decide which of his FIVE studio releases I am going to try to dig into.  I can look at other people’s ratings of his albums all I want, but rap is just such a crap shoot anyway, there is no way I am going to be successful finding what I’m looking for. 

Since I am just starting to make progress of Wu-Tang solo albums, most of what follows is more of a list of some of my all-time favorite Wu-Tang member’s offerings, and not so much any hidden gems that I have found.  Maybe once I am all the way through the solo catalogues I will be able to offer a LxListening Wu-Tang sequel.  Enjoy.

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