Havoc & Bright Lights
For some reason 2012 has become the year of the powerful female singer-songwriter releasing an album after a long hiatus (Fiona Apple, Cat Power, Sinead O’Connor) or trying to come back from a disappointing effort (Regina Spektor, Norah Jones). Alanis Morissette is trying to capitalize on this trend with her first album in five years, Havoc and Bright Lights, and I fully expect Natalie Merchant and Sarah McLachlan to pile on as well. In all seriousness, I haven’t listened to an Alanis record since Supposed Former Infatuation Junkie (her sophomore album), and was shocked to learn she has released three albums in the interim between Junkie and Havoc. Alanis recent work has literally been more of a part of my consciousness through her appearance on a couple of seasons of Weeds, than she has been through me listening to any of her recent music.
This is strange, because I’m not sure Alanis ever did anything to lose me as a fan. I still revisit Jagged Little Pill, and the magnificent “Uninvited” quite often. I think more than anything, her past three albums have not gotten any singles press, and she just kind of faded out of my view. That is all about to change, and I am going to lift my blinders to Alanis Morissette for better or for worse.
Continue reading “Alanis Morissette Review: Havoc and Bright Lights”
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
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.
Continue reading “Top Ten Thursday: The Sophomore Slump”
For some reason we decided to list the top ten break-up songs the same week as Valentine’s Day. This is awfully cynical, but most relationships do end up in a break up, so deal with it. The discussion on which songs should make the list was uncharacteristically emotional for a LxL meeting, and ended with Wes quite sore over several subjects and Todd reduced to a puddle of salty-teared emotion. The end list did end up quite interesting though, with several classics, and a fair bit of 90’s girl pop. Let’s see if I can give all these songs justice without crying into my ice cream.
Continue reading “Top Ten Thursday: Break-up Songs So Good You Might Want To Break-up Just to Get the Full Effect”