Just a Reflektor

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To be honest, I needed to listen to the title track a few times before I ever even gave the rest of the album a fair chance. I’ve never been a huge fan of Arcade Fire until recently. I even went through Arcade Fire’s albums chronologically to compare. While Suburbs is a spectacular album, Reflektor is with out a doubt their best work.

The more I listen to the album, the more I fall in love with it. Reflektor is like “Sell your soul to the Devil” good. There is definitely a theme played throughout this record. Reflection: deep consideration during meditation, an image, representation, or counterpart. With the dark you have light, materials that are shiny and fracture easily, a mirrored image.

The songs dissect the meaning of reflection. They make you contemplate life and then dance and have fun, dance and have more fun, and end in contemplation. The design is magnificent. The album cover is black ink printed on a reflective material that has a rainbow sheen in the light. The inside slip covers: one dark, one light. The vinyl labels, one black, one white. Nothing can be reflective without light for we would not know light without the darkness. The icing on the cake: the end of the album is a reflection of the album being played backwards – play it in reverse and it is the album forwards. Mind = Blown.

I am going to see Arcade Fire’s Reflektor tour, live at the United Center in August. I will be sure to share my experience!

Paul McCartney’s “New” album

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I first heard “Appreciate” on the radio in the car with a few friends of mine. I turned it up and almost couldn’t believe my ears. I knew immediately that it was Paul McCartney, but had a difficult time figuring out if it was old or new. After looking the song up, I found it was part of Paul McCartney’s album titled, “New.”

This song sounded like classic 1960’s Beatles music in combination with today’s electro-pop sound (which really isn’t new to the Beatles). I thought to myself, “Wow, it’s really awesome that he can create a song that reaches such a wide range of listeners!”

I also really liked the sound of “Queenie Eye,” it has kind of a “Magical Mystery Tour” feel to it. I watched McCartney perform “Everybody Out There” on an awards show and thoroughly enjoyed it.

I also immediately recognized the cover artwork of Dan Flavin or at least the artwork of someone heavily inspired by Dan Flavin…bonus points for being in the know!

It May Be Old, But It’s New To Me

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First, please play this song and tell me whether you thought it was new or old (assuming you have never heard this song before).

 

The song is “Tusk” by Fleetwood Mac. I’ve heard this song a time or two before on the radio, but never caught the band or song title. I “Shazzamed” it when I heard the song on XRT, Chicago’s best radio station, and saw it was none other than Fleetwood Mac. WHAAAT?! I thought this was a NEW song!

This just goes to show that Fleetwood Mac has succeeded in creating timeless music.

 

Jack White

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I wouldn’t say Jack White is a new fave. I’ve been a huge fan of Jack White since “Seven Nation Army,” my freshman year in high school, to be exact. I’ve enjoyed The White Stripes, Dead Weather, the Raconteurs, as well as some of his other albums he’s produced, like Wonda Jackson (now that’s an old lady who can rock). A few years ago Jack White released “Blunderbuss,” and I loved everything about it. I first heard the album in the music store I was working in at the time. Then I bought the vinyl record for myself. Opening a new vinyl record always gets me excited, it’s like taking a book worm to buy a new hard-back book. I carefully peel the plastic wrapping off, and slowly open the vinyl and pay close attention to overall design and font usage. I smell it, I touch it all over and notice the appropriate simi-gloss spot varnish on a decent matte album cover. I put the first record on as I inspect all the other elements to my newest addition…His wide range of music styles and ability to move one’s soul from one spectrum to another is magical.

A couple of years back, I had the pleasure of watching his set at Chicago’s Lollapalooza. The first half of the show was played with an all-male band dressing in a 1940’s garb. The second half of the set was played with a female band. The Chicks totally rocked harder. The finale brought the entire band together for a spectacular performance. The best part is when they show the point of view from the artist looking over the crowd and the sun setting behind the skyline on the side screens.

I am very excited to hear what the mastermind has on his upcoming album, Lazaretto, drops Tuesday, June 10. You can Pre Order the album here.

Jack White’s Ultra LP

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Jack White’s new album, Lazaretto, is set to be released in June. It’s being referred to as an Ultra LP. Let me tell you, this is monumental in the history of vinyl records. Nothing like this has ever been done before. Jack White and Third Man Records achieved not one, but SIX new features. Please watch this video to see for yourself – prepare to have your mind blown!