Inside Llewyn Davis
It is kind of hard to review a soundtrack without seeing the movie. The context may be very important for a soundtrack. Certain songs may be felt more deeply when accompanied by the attached story. So, with that caveat in place, I am going to go ahead and review the original soundtrack for Inside Llewyn Davis. I kind of figured it wouldn’t hurt, since a lot of people may want to pick up the whole album on the strength of the Oscar Isaac and Marcus Mumford rendition of the traditional “Fare Thee Well”. In addition, many people just don’t see many movies, particularly Oscar-bat like Inside Llewyn Davis, so a review may be the only exposure they get.
“Like A Rolling Stone”
In 1965 Bob Dylan released “Like A Rolling Stone” as a single from his album Highway 61 Revisited. The song instantly created a buzz and was considered to be a very controversial pick as a single. Clocking in at six minutes and thirteen seconds, it was one of the longest pop singles to ever be released. Not only that, but this was the first time the mass public had heard Bob Dylan in his new electric format on a full LP rather than his traditional acoustic/folk. His die-hard fans may have been irate, but the move proved successful as Bob Dylan was able to garner a larger fan base and put out an album that is widely regarded as his best work ever. And not only that, but many (even the almighty Rolling Stone magazine) dean “Like A Rolling Stone” to be the greatest rock songs of all time. Now a mere 48 years later, the infamous song finally gets a music video. And what type of video does one of the greatest songs of all time warrant? Well one of the greatest music videos of all time of course.
New York based musician Ryan Lott aka Son Lux has quietly been making some of the most forward-thinking electronic/post-rock music around since 2008. The young musician has taken on his music with a real entrepreneurial spirit, with his songs taking the most unique twists, and exploring all expanses of the musical universe. Despite being highly imaginative, Son Lux’s music has left me a little cold in its abstractness until this year with his third release Lanterns.
Ever wonder what Bruce Springsteen bottoming out looks like? Here it is ladies and gentleman. “High Hopes”, the lead single from Springsteen’s album of the same name, is an abomination for a number of reasons. But before taking The Boss to task, let me give you a little background on the upcoming album. High Hopes, the album, is essentially a b-sides collection of material re-recorded with various members of The E Street Band, along with Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine fame taking the place of LxL favorite Steven Van Zandt on eight of the twelve tracks. Other artists have worked this formula fairly well, but if “High Hopes” is any indication, Springsteen is going to have far less success with a common formula.
Nearly two years after the release of “Bad Girls”, one of M.I.A.’s biggest singles to date, as well as a slew of three additional pre-releases, we now finally have the mother album to go with these albumless tracks, Matangi. After the non-success of her last album, MAYA (which I personally thought to be great) M.I.A. hit a creative wall, in which she was not only struggling with studio execs pressuring her to make another Kala, but was also suffering from some mild writers block. The good news is the frustration between artist and studio didn’t seem to have too much of an effect on the overall outcome of the album. After a trip to India she found inspiration from her Hindu roots in the goddess Matangi, the Hindu Divine Mother that governs music, knowledge and art. Fairly fitting I’d say, and her inspiration has led to yet another solid effort from our favorite English-Sri Lankan dub/electronica/world/hip-hop artist.