A blog

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

6. Love is a Losing Game by Amy Winehouse
(from the album Back to Black, fifth single)
There's so much to like about this track. The verses are tight and the songs scans well. There's not an unnecessary word or syllable uttered. It's an economical track to be sure. The vocal phrasing and tone is very effective. Every beat, every cadence is carefully meted out and miserly put into place. Lovingly too since it's an homage. But more than that, Amy's observing the world that's around her, so it's an equally astute portrait of life lessons learned. And the visuals are just as crafty-yet-effortless as the song is.

5. Peacebone by Animal Collective
(from the album Strawberry Jam, first single)
Inhabiting a nurturing space so stand back and watch what happens.

4. Competition by Dragonette
(from the album Galore, unreleased single)
This appeared ready to take America by storm on an earlier indie EP. Fast-forward to the majors: Mercury UK botched it and has now dropped the band, who have returned to Canada, where their first single "I Get Around" ended up being a bit of hit in 2007 anyway. Basement Jaxx fucks the Divinyls -- a sluttily, heavily borrowed pastiche that turns every trick in the book into moderately successful pop gestures. The racy conceits that come across as actually felt rather than posited postures are the true winners. Namely, what you see here and the gem of an album closer "You Please Me."