So, we move onto batch number three and what a mixed bag it was. This collection of albums covered the absolute dire (Katy Perry) to the sublime in experimental (Sonic Youth) with a little bit of everything in between as well for good measure. I’m at the halfway mark of this experiment and it is turning into a really cool one which is opening me up to so much wonderful music. You really can never stop allowing your mind to explore new things. Enjoy!
TITLE: Astrid Gilberto – Gilberto with Turrentine
HIGHEST CHART POSITION: N/A
Astrid Gilberto is one of my favorite samba and bossa nova singers. In 1971, she teamed up with American saxophonist, Stanley Turrentine to record a delicately cute record of cover versions of then well known numbers. Gilberto has a plethora of albums to explore from a career that has spanned over fifty long years! If you ever get a spare Sunday morning then, may I suggest you put some Astrid Gilberto on your Spotify and allow yourself to be swept up by one of the most beautiful voices you will ever hear!
TITLE: Jacques Brel – Chansons ou Versions Inédites de Jeunesse
RELEASED: September 23 2003
HIGHEST CHART POSITION: N/A
Chansons ou Versions Inédites de Jeunesse is a collection of early recording from 1953/54 that captures a raw and edgy Jacques Brel before he hit his straps. There is a distinct energy on this release, disc number 16 of a massive retrospective box set that came out in 2003 to celebrate the life and music of Brel, born in Belgium yet famous for his French compositions and cover versions. Brel passed away in 1978 at the tender age of 48. One can only imagine what other wonders he would have released had he lived another thrity years or so. Brel is a most splendid singer and his husky vocals are unlike anything else I have ever heard.
TITLE: Katy Perry – Witness
RELEASED: 9 June 2017
HIGHEST CHART POSITION: Number 1
If there is an album that qualifies for “worst album of all time” then this is it! I have absolutely nothing kind to say about this over produced, grim 80’s rip off of an album. Naturally, it charted all over the world because, let’s face it, too many people listen to horse shit music and “Witness” is worse than horse shit music. I can’t even begin to describe just how bad it is. I guess, if you are a mentally challenged teenager incapable of thinking for yourself then “Witness” is the record for you. Otherwise, consider the listening experience to be a painful one at best. Perry tries to rip off the 80’s look with a rather poor album cover and the music inside the album is best left for elevator music. Yes, it is that dire!
TITLE: Sonic Youth – Washing Machine
RELEASED: 26 September 1995
HIGHEST CHART POSITION: 39
Yet another “classic” album that I should have listened to by now. As far as records go, “Washing Machine” is one of the most adventurous, creative and challenging records produced in the 90’s. Actually, make that the past 40 years. It oozes class and dignity from the opening bars of “Becuz” all the way through to “The Diamond Sea”. The record was made at Easley Studios in Memphis during the early months of 1995 and has gone on to become an album everyone needs to hear at some point in their life. Thankfully, that moment has arrived now for me.
TITLE: Queens of The Stone Age – …Like Clockwork
RELEASED: 3 June 2013
HIGHEST CHART POSITION: 1
Queens Of The Stone Age are a band whom I have always admired but failed to fully explore their back catalogue of albums on offer. I know they are all good because the right friends have made the right noises about them over the years so listening to “…Like Clockwork” was a lot of fun from beginning to end. The record was a long time coming and at one point, Trent Reznor was going to assume the producing role. Sadly, he didn’t. Still, this didn’t stop QOTSA from producing one of the best albums I have heard in many years. Off the back of this alone, I will now look to explore the remainder of an extraordinary legacy.
TITLE: The The – Soul Mining
RELEASED: 21 October 1983
HIGHEST CHART PLACING: 27
Over the years, I had heard a lot of hype about this album and to be honest, I felt disappointed by the time it finished last Sunday morning. It’s even listed in the book, “1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die” and garnered treasured positions in the many best albums of the 1980’s lists. Perhaps, I just couldn’t “get” the songs contained within? Either way, it’s a record I may try and revisit but i’m not sure if that will change my original point of view?