Top Ten Thursday: The Sophomore Slump

The sophomore album.  There is almost always exponentially more anticipation and expectations for a band or artist’s second album.  We at LxL thought that those expectations would lead to a lot of massively disappointing second efforts.  Interestingly enough, after a lot of research, we were pleased to discover that the sophomore album failure rate is really not all that high.  Despite this welcome discovery, there were still enough clunkers to make a list of the most disappointing follow-up albums.  Note that this list does not contain the worst all-time sophomore albums, but instead the albums that did not live up to the expectations brought on by a great or promising debut.  As always, fill in the blanks with any albums we may have left off the list, or call us out for albums you think should not have been included.  Enjoy!

10. Raekwon – Immobilarity

raekwon, album, cover, art

So your two best friends are RZA and Ghostface Killah, and you’ve just released your debut smash, Only Built 4 Cuban Linx.  What should you do next?  I’ll tell you what you don’t do.  You don’t bypass one of the greatest hip-hop producers since the genre’s genesis (RZA).  You also don’t fail to utilize a rapper that fits snugly between Biggy and Jay-Z in the holy triumvirate of New York rappers (Ghostface).  Fail.

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Rocket Juice & the Moon Review

Rocket Juice & the Moon

Rocket Juice & the Moon

Rocket Juice & the Moon album cover art

Damon Albarn is a man who has worn many hats. In the last ten years, he has released albums with four different bands (most notably Gorillaz and Blur), all projects which have been more than respectable. Flea from Red Hot Chili Peppers fame is another person who has started spreading his wings, having played with Thom Yorke’s super group Atoms for Peace and now with this new project with Albarn. Rocket Juice & the Moon is a space funk super group from Damon Albarn, Flea (bass), and Tony Allen (drums) from Afrobeat legend Fela Kuti’s band. For their self-titled debut release, the funk trio also pulls in plenty of guests from rappers to brass bands to world music artists, for what is no doubt a fun listen but not much beyond that.
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