Albums I have listened to this week:
The Rolling Stones
The Rolling Stones (1964)
This is essentially a covers album, except for the song I have chosen to add to my playlist. Apart from the reason of it being their only original, it was actually my favourite, which makes me wonder; why did they release an album full of covers? Yes they are a lot rockier than their original versions, but if this song by Richards & Jagger is so good, then why didn't they try harder? Anyways, this is rather tame for the stones we know and love today, I'm looking forward to their later releases.
BEST SONG: Tell Me
Buck Owens And His Buckaroos
I've Got A Tiger By The Tail (1965)
Well this is VERY country. Can't get more so than this album. Oh and yes, I did like it. Not as much as Marty Robbins, but I still had a good time listening. I chose this song as my favourite because it was slow, relaxing and so incredibly low I couldn't believe it. Not sure why, but for just a second I thought I could make it to those notes and gave it a go myself. I couldn't. Not even close. I really liked the lyrics of a few songs on this especially "Wham Bam", "Cryin' Time", and the title track. They made me laugh because they were so odd.
BEST SONG: Streets of Laredo
Jerry Lee Lewis
Live At The Star Club, Hamburg (1965)
I liked this one, but I wasn't in love with it. I'm kind of getting bored of hearing the same older songs being covered in a slightly different way. That said, 'Great Balls of Fire' is a classic and I just couldn't deny choosing it as my favourite. No point pretending that I preferred one of the other songs just because they were new to my ears. So here's the one I added to my playlist, the most obvious, predictable track, and I don't even care.
BEST SONG: Great Balls of Fire
Here Are The Sonics (1965)
Well what can I possibly say about ANOTHER album saturated with the SAME covers. Yes, this one may have more distorted guitar and slightly shoutier vocals, but damn just give me an original album. What is the point in releasing this? Surely fans are going to have a record collection of 20 albums all including the same exact songs? Can't even comment on this one really because it's not even their stuff. Everyone please stop covering 'Good Golly Miss Molly'.
BEST SONG: Have Love Will Travel
Bringing It All Back Home (1965)
I have mixed reactions for this album. Part of me thought it was really cool because the lyrics are so strange and original. Another part of me thought it was super boring because of the amount of words used- I literally couldn't keep up with some of the songs. Then a tiny slither of me though that certain songs could have been Beatles' ones...were they stealing? Probably. White people steal everything. I preferred the previous, less rambling album.
BEST SONG: Mr. Tamborine Man
Otis Blue: Otis Redding Sings Soul (1965)
Okay so I'm going to be such a hypocrite here. After going on and on about hating it when artists cover classic songs; this collection is amazing. Otis could sing 'Mary Had a Little Lamb' and I'd love it to the grave! He just can't do anything wrong in my eyes. Hearing him cover 'Respect' was a blessing and a half; beautiful. His rendition of 'Change Is Gonna Come'; stunning (and added to personal playlists). But I chose this one as my favourite because it's flawless and there was no way in hell I was going to ignore its perfection. I love you Otis Redding. You are one of the GREATS.
BEST SONG: My Girl (duh)
The Beach Boys
The Beach Boys Today (1965)
Well I can see why this album didn't do as well as the next one did. None of the songs really stood out and there was just this kind of 'meh' feeling towards every track. Maybe I'm being particularly negative today, but I was a bit disappointed hearing such a mediocre album from a group I love so much. Am I a true Beach Boys fan if I don't like this album? Potentially not. But I did really like the little speech clip at the end. I'm pretty sure they were all sitting eating takeaway food...an activity that is close to my heart.
BEST SONG: She Knows Me Too Well
A Love Supreme (1965)
To my now jazz-trained ears, this was rather different to the stuff I had heard before. The improvisations were super complicated, ones only extremely virtuosic musicians would have been able to create on command. I wasn't really a fan, but I did appreciate it a lot. There was a heavy use of timpani, which added drama and in the third track there was a 3 min long double bass solo at the end. I though that was weird. And a bit too long. I like double bass, but really only as a little decoration to a song...not an entire section played completely by itself.
BEST SONG: Part IV- Psalm
Live At The Regal (1965)
I've said before I'm a fan of blues, I'm just not able to listen to an entire album of it and not get bored. I think maybe because I'm familiar with the actual notation of blues that all I can hear throughout each song is the same chord progression and bass scale. B.B King is undeniably excellent, but I found it hard to pay 100% of my attention to this album. However, I have become quite interested in listening to live albums. There's something about the applause and the minor mess-ups that makes such talent seem more human.
BEST SONG: Sweet Little Angel
Rubber Soul (1965)
This is a much more pop album, getting closer and closer to the modern genre. It made me laugh when I heard the exact same backing vocals in 'You Won't See Me' and then the one directly after... who's idea was that? You can't listen to this with just one earphone; you'll only hear either guitar or vocals. I hate stereo. There's a cool little french bit in 'Michelle'. Not sure why though. And of course I couldn't help but draw comparison with Bob Dylan: similar lyrical themes. I really love 'Norwegian Wood', but chose this because it was new for me.
BEST SONG: You Won't See Me
Bert Jansch (1965)
I only have one word that wholly describes this album: boring. I could hardly distinguish one song from the next and zoned out for a lot of it. The guitar playing was nice...wasn't a fan of the voice. I don't have a lot of good to say about this one. I guess when you're competing with the likes of The Beatles and Beach Boys, maybe there's just no way to stand out. I chose this song, not because it was my favourite, but because it was one of the shortest. There was one 50 seconds long, but I thought that was too mean.
BEST SONG: Do You Hear Me Now
Mr. Tamborine Man (1965)
Sorry Bob Dylan, I'm going to say that their version of 'Mr. Tamborine Man' was so much better than yours. I'm not even mad that they stole the song, it's that good. I must admit these guys sound very Beatle-esc, the music is similar (bit more folky) and the gang vocals are basically The Beatles all over... I really liked this. I've listened to 'Mr. Tamborine Man' so much this week. However, I felt that after positioning such a banger as the first track; the rest of the album just wasn't quite as good in comparison. But 'We'll Meet Again' was a nice track; I added it to my personal playlist.
BEST SONG: Mr. Tamborine Man (heck yeah)
Highway 61 Revisited (1965)
I've become more used to the ramblings of Bob Dylan. I (of course) enjoyed 'Like A Rolling Stone', then didn't get into any other song until the fifth track. This one took me by surprise because I was going to choose 'Like A Rolling Stone', but decided to be somewhat less predictable and go with that one instead. I also liked 'Queen Jane Approximately'. I think I favour the more melody-focused rather than speech-focused tracks. Don't get me wrong, his lyrics are amazing, just sometimes too much for my measly ears to follow.
BEST SONG: Ballad Of A Thin Man
My Generation (1965)
When I worked in this small pub (for a short while), I knew this man who was a huge music fan. Every single day we spoke, he would make sure to mention his love for The Who. I had never really investigated much about them, apart from 'My Generation', I hardly knew the songs. Unfortunately, I was actually rather disappointed with this one. Between the covers and several attempts at ripping off The Beatles; the only song I really vibe to is 'My Generation'. Maybe I'm just not getting it, but I honestly don't see the hype (yet).
BEST SONG: My Generation
This one is my favourite Beatles album so far. It had a variety of songs, and by this point I feel like they hard really perfected their sound. They were on quite a roll; releasing Rubber Soul just five seconds ago and then back at it again with the bangers. I sort of liked every song, except 'Love You To'... the weird Middle Eastern instruments there were just out of place and not even worth it. My top two were obviously 'Yellow Submarine' and 'Eleanor Rigby', and I chose the latter because I had completely forgotten it existed.
BEST SONG: Eleanor Rigby