1. ...And You Shall Know Us By The Trail Of Dead: source tags and codes
Pitchfork gave this record a 10/10, which is no easy feat for a bunch of cynical, jaded music snobs. So I sorta felt compelled to pick it up, although I didn't really give it a full run-through until this morning's hellish commute. It's good; it's ambitious; it's also a bit aggressive for my personal taste. I'm sure it'll grow on me, though. But it has its work cut out for it in that regard, because I also bought:
2. Jim O'Rourke: Insignificance
I don't really know what happened; Friday night, after work, the woman and I got taken out to dinner (excellent tapas at Sala) and then, in a bit of drunken bravado, I demanded that we walk to Other Music so I could see if they had the ...Trail of Dead album. Which they did, for $11.99; so that was exciting, and yet I needed to spend more money, although I didn't know what else I wanted. Until I remembered that I had wanted to hear the new Jim O'Rourke, which came out a few months ago.
Folks, this record is amazing. Had I gotten it in time, it surely would have been my top record of 2001. It's a simple, bare-bones rock record, but with really great songwriting and a fantastic vibe. Pitchfork, at the time it came out, only gave it an 8/10, but it must've stayed around in their stereos because it make their top 20. [Not that Pitchfork is the ultimate say on anything, of course.] I can assure you that it will stay in mine.
3. Mahavishnu Orchestra: The Inner Mounting Flame
I had bought this record as one of the woman's V-Day gifts; it was on her amazon list, and I must say I was surprised that she'd even heard of them. I've always been a huge (although unmotivated) admirer of John McLaughlin, and so over the weekend we popped it in. Jesus Christ. It's fucking amazing. Great grooves, great players, great energy. And McLaughlin's a monster. Great stuff.