Music Reviews

Category:  Music Reviews
Wednesday, September 4th, 2013 at 11:30 PM

Diarrhea Planet

I’m Rich Beyond Your Wildest Dreams

Infinity Cat Recordings

By the time that this sentence has been read, there is a good chance that you might already be judging Diarrhea Planet due to the band’s, um, interesting name. Yes, a name like Diarrhea Planet is bound to earn a few chuckles here and some disapproving head shakes there, but where the moniker may be questionable, there’s no disputing that “I’m Rich Beyond Your Wildest Dreams” rocks hard. The Nashville, Tenn. sextet employs four guitarists on their sophomore full-length album, and the string-work certainly doesn’t disappoint, with plenty of anthemic solos peppering the 13 tracks. While songs like “Ugliest Son” go for the jugular, “I’m Rich Beyond Your Wildest Dreams” is at its best on the more wistful tunes, with “Kids” hitting a high when singer Jordan Smith bellowing “we’re just kids” over a deluge of guitars. There’s still room for the band to grow, but this album is rich with rewards. - Alex Bieler - 4 Stars

No Age

An Object

Sub Pop

For those who haven’t listened to No Age before, “An Object” marks a suitable introduction to Dean Spunt and Randy Randall’s noisy dream-punk project. However, if you’ve been listening to the Southern California duo’s work over the past half decade, something seems off. “An Object” seems tired compared to the prior releases, with trademark sonic blasts being pared down to the point of the album sounding fairly quiet and Spunt’s vocals seeming tired at times. The all-out thrashing thrill ride of 2010’s “Fever Dreaming” won’t be found here. Single “C’mon, Stimmung” tries, but it never manages to be that go-to song for the noisy bliss that No Age can bring to the table. Of course, all of this doesn’t mean “An Object” is a bad album by any means, just one that can’t quite measure up to the rest of No Age’s impressive catalog. - Alex Bieler - 3 Stars

Franz Ferdinand

Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action


Sometimes it seems rather odd that Scottish dance-rock troupe Franz Ferdinand has been around for a decade, yet when your mind transports you back in time to the first time you heard “Take Me Out,” suddenly the difference in time is all too real. With many of their early- to mid-2000s counterparts failing to live up to their early success, the Franz foursome still manage to make fun, danceable tunes in their fourth full-length album “Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action.” Lead track “Right Action” feels right at home in the Franz Ferdinand catalog, with a catchy guitar hook bouncing along to a marching beat, one of many songs that will make you feel at home in a smoky club, regardless of any actual dancing ability. The 10 tracks are by no means groundbreaking or essential, but least Franz Ferdinand is still making fun music instead of flat-out clunkers. - Alex Bieler - 3.5 Stars

Nine Inch Nails

Hesitation Marks


In some ways, 2013 has been: The Year of the Opposite. Daft Punk did an about-face, shifting from machine-based creations to focus on human-produced sounds, and Kanye West opted for sparser beats with less production and fewer cameos – both resulting their most raw and potentially daring efforts yet. Trent Reznor continues that trend, adopting a minimalist approach to the production here. His relentless pursuit of sound construction results in a remarkably clean, tight album – a work that balances lusciously thick swells with simple yet driving beats, all while providing ample room for Reznor to explore his trademark themes of disconnectedness. “All Time Low” captures Reznor’s blending of catchy hooks and beats with his introspection, as he ponders, “Everything is not okay… we lost ourselves along the way,” over one of the album’s happier sounding songs. Reznor’s creating – maybe with hesitation, maybe without; regardless, the end result is beautiful. – Ben Speggen - 4 Stars

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