New and Reissued Music

Sufjan StevensThe Avalanche
Ah, Mr. Stevens, such high hopes I had for you. How can you follow up a masterpiece like Illinois? The answer is, not so easily, and the truth is you really shouldn’t do it not with an album of tossed off B-sides like this. Or maybe I’m wrong and this release is genius thinking, because if anyone criticizes him, he can just say, “well this isn’t my best stuff”. And if people love it, then he can say, “you see even my turds are golden”. Anyway, I digress. I know the people wanted more, and we were looking forward to this one, but this album should have stayed “on the shelf” as they say. There are a couple tracks here that I like, and I don’t think they would have been out of place on Illinois, including The Avalanche, Adlai Stevenson (which is different from the one on the Kill Rock Stars comp), Henney Buggy Band, Saul Bellow and all the alternate versions of Chicago. When it’s all said and done, this is a decent B-sides album, and seeing as how he never really “intended” to put it out, I will not let this minor release tarnish his reputation in my eyes. That’s all I gotta say, still looking forward to the next proper release from Mr. Stevens.

Howie BeckHowie Beck
This is a good record.

Shapes and SizesShapes and Sizes (Asthmatic Kitty)

IrvingDeath In The Garden of Blood and Flowers

Serena ManeeshSerena Maneesh
Buyer’s remorse.

Oxford CollapseRemember The Night Parties
Not heard it yet.

The Pogues – Rhino Reissues
Hell’s Ditch
Peace and Love
Red Roses For Me
If I Should Fall From Grace
Rum, Sodomy and The Lash

As always, reviews to follow at a much later date, or possibly never.

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