Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Video: Underworld "Ring Road"

It has been nearly a year since Underworld unveiled their long anticipated comeback album Oblivion With Bells to a public that has proved itself largely indifferent. Perhaps it didn't quite fit in with current musical landscape or reach the heights of the band's best material but it is fair to expect more of an online buzz for a band with their following. I suspect the reason is that we have another mishandled album on our hands. The lead single "Crocodile" was not the greatest intro to the album because it never quite lifted off like you expected (suffering from too much of the same riff) and it seems like I have seen nothing else about the album since it's release. A quick browse through itunes offers an explanation: they didn't release any further singles to the general public. Personally I was waiting to write about the album until "Beautiful Burnout" got an edit and a single release but I never saw it. Apparently that happened ages ago but was only promoted to djs despite being the album's most likely breakout track. Given that Karl Hyde's voice anchors Oblivion With Bells like nothing Underworld has released since Underneath The Radar this approach of exclusively chasing the Beatport crowd seems entirely wrong. "Ring Road" is a decent single choice with Hyde's daft spoken poetry bringing everything together. It sounds quite like Beaucoup Fish's "Bruce Lee":

: A live album is due from the duo in November so stop by their site for all the info.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Shuffle Blog

Neon Neon "Trick For Treat"

The better of Stainless Style's hip hop tracks has a truly oddball rap from Spank Rock that has something to say about Oprah and her cable network Oxygen before going into a riff on the album's subject John DeLorean. Saved by the killer falsetto "she got me dreaming like a Michigan boy" hook which I've just learned is sung by Har Mar Superstar. Still one of those tracks that works better in the context of the album.

Chemical Brothers "Spring"

This b-side from "The Boxer" single is unusually melodic as the Brothers noodle about touching ever so lightly the edge of psychedelia. A fans only affair but not a track without rewards.

Ladytron "Tomorrow"

There is something very familiar about this Velocifero track. Probably something to do with the album all sounding very much the same. It works but not as well as the song where she sings about loving a computer.

The Whip "Trash"

Are these guys on Modular? Apparently they are signed to Norman Cook's Southern Fried Records which I suppose means that label has diversified quite a bit. It has a great build to it and that's not the sort of thing you get every day in a rock record.

Underworld "To Heal (And Restore Broken Bodies)"

This Oblivion with Bells interlude just got an expansion for the Songs for Tibet-The Art of Peace Music Project compilation that makes it sound even more dopey as it wallows in new age spiritualism. Of course it's the sort of track I would have written off as completely harmless a decade ago so maybe it's just me.