Roadrunner Records - Slipknot's hard-hitting, aggressive metal anthems are getting…
- Posted on Jul 4th 2008 12:00PM by Adam Horne
Mercury City: 'The Heat From the Sun' (Album): This band seems to take a lot of cues from the late-'90s alt-rock playbook. Having an entire album that sounds vaguely like Dishwalla's 'Counting Blue Cars' may not necessarily be a bad thing (that song was huge!) but the problem is, the hooks just aren't here. These guys channel other big-chorus-loving power pop acts like All-American Rejects (on 'Simple as It Seems') and U2 (on 'Hysteric'), but the melodies never break out of generic territory. If it's any consolation, this band would sound perfect over one of those shots of Lauren Conrad staring blankly into the distance on 'The Hills.'
YV feat. Polow Da Don: 'I Gotta Dolla' (CD single): On more than one occasion, I have gone head-to-head with hip-hop haters, defending the genre as an art form worthy of respect. I insist that if you look beyond the radio-friendly hitmakers (read: Polow Da Don), you'll find the lyrical genius of GZA, the beats-as-poetry of Madlib or the rhythmic playfulness of Pharoahe Monch. But tracks like 'I Gotta Dolla' just make me look bad. I know there is an audience for this, but its value goes no further than being a satisfactory club banger or a 30-second ringtone.
Donavon Frankenreiter: 'Pass It Around' (Album): Expectations were low when I popped in this nondescript disc of an artist I'd never heard of. I must say, I was pleasantly surprised. Donavon Frankenreiter plays laid-back folk in the vein of Ray LaMontagne or Amos Lee -- a down-home brand of Americana. It's musical comfort food. Frankenreiter's mature voice is not overbearing with theatrics, and he avoids using hammy high school choir vibrato. This is the type of album that will appeal to everyone, from soccer moms to Jeep Wrangler-driving frat boys, and everyone in between. Including me.