Thursday, February 17, 2005


Coldplay- Parachutes

Dear Coldplay: You know how the music press started calling you guys ‘Radiohead Junior’ pretty much right out of the gate? On “OK Computer,” Radiohead names a song after a character in Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy (Marvin, the “Paranoid Android.”)
So what do you guys do? Name the first song on your debut album after the Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy’s slogan (“Don’t Panic.”)

Coldplay- A Rush Of Blood To The Head

Most likely to induce guilty pleasure singalongs when the roommates aren’t home. Obvious (to me) Hitchhiker’s rip aside, I thought that ‘Parachutes’ was a pretty good record- Jesus, is ‘Yellow’ ever a good one- just a little bit monochromatic over time. The first time I heard ‘Clocks’ was in the local hot dog shop with Damian- following that listen, I went and bought the record (it’s a funny song, isn’t it? Really repetitive like Lungfish, of all bands, with the main keyboard bit lifted directly from New Order’s “Bizarre Love Triangle.”) Granted, I think it’s probably two songs too long, but I still enjoy the hell out of it- more varied, hooky, occasionally doleful. For whatever it’s worth, ‘In My Place’ is probably my favorite.

Ornette Coleman- Free Jazz

Hey everybody, watch the indie rock kid try and review a seminal jazz album!
I bought this reissue several years back- part of the celebration of fifty years of Atlantic Records. They could have celebrated by getting some better album designers. The packaging for the reissue series looks very nice indeed- each CD comes in a smaller replica of the original cover art, which is then put into a post-recycling embossed cardboard case- but sliding the CD out of the faux album inevitably causes all sorts of scratches to appear. More function and less fashion, please.

Anyway, the album. Totally insane. Ornette Coleman took two quartets into separate rooms of a studio, and each quartet played. Big names that even a patent amateur like me knows- Eric Dolphy, Don Cherry. As each quartet plays, one in each speaker, you can either try and follow along with one, or both, as they play off each other. It’s a lot to take (in.) Then at the moment you think you’re head’s going to explode from it all, both quartets manage to link up for a glorious minute or so. Then, back to the chaos. Awesome.


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