clipping., "Nothing Is Safe"
There was probably a time in my life when I would have regarded clipping. askance. I've long been OK with noise in my music, having picked up an affection for industrial as a teenager that continued forward with noise rock, various gnarly forms of punk, etc. And, of course, hip hop has been a staple of my listening for even longer. But for a long time, I thought I didn't like pretension in music. It led me to avoiding things like prog rock, various forms of art rock, all kind of ambitious music for a long time. Or, at least, things that were ambitious in particular ways that set me off.
It took me a while to sort out that pretension isn't always a bad thing. Reaching as an artist is a good thing, even if that experimentation doesn't always work. clipping. is unrepentantly pretentious, aggressively experimental, and endlessly brilliant. Young Josh might not have given them the time of day, but Young Josh could be really stupid.
Flaming Lips, "Watching the Lightbugs Glow"
After King's Mouth saw the band begin heading back to their more dayglo psych rock ways, they fully re-embraced that approach with American Head. It's a gauzy love letter to Wayne Coyne's youth in Oklahoma. Oh, and drugs. Lots of drugs. Musically, it's their best work since The Terror, and in an entirely different direction. Unexpectedly, this is one of the best albums from last year.
Future of the Left, "Singing of the Bonesaws"
That backbone, that rhythm, is so friggin' good. This is the kind of thing that Future of the Left do so well, and their best songs usually have this kind of structure.
Johnny Cash, "I Still Miss Someone"
Live albums suck! Except when they don't! I don't really know enough about Cash's discography to know if there are studio albums that I should be listening to, but the live prison albums really rule.
Eddie Holland, "Just Ain't Enough Love"
Gonna let Eddie take us out here, just let that Motown sound roll over us.