Archives For GooseRadio Music Review

GooseRadio Reviews 2010 — Relive the year in Kanye’s Tweets here>>

Because Twitter has tainted the way we write, we’re trying something new this year, reviews for our top 10 albums in 140 characters or less. Why? Because we’re hip and modern (and because Alex can’t come up with anything clever to write). Enjoy!

*Album titles link to albums on ITunes…

10) The Arcade Fire – The Suburbs

That line from Thoreau, “Most men live lives of quiet desperation,” pretty much sums it up.

Favorite Track: “City With No Children”

9) Sleigh Bells – Treats

See, your music doesn’t have to sound like a cat being run over by a car to be critically acclaimed. It can be both original & accessible.

Favorite Track: “Infinity Guitars”

8 ) VersaEmerge – Fixed At Zero

Fixed At Zero is dark, layered and infinitely more interesting than anything being put out by Versa’s Warped Tour peers.

Favorite Track: “You’ll Never Know”

7) David Gray – Foundling

After last year’s profound Draw the Line breathing in all of life’s heavy questions, Foundling is the quiet exhale.

Favorite Track: “Holding On”

6) Jars of Clay – The Shelter

Simply put, The Shelter is about the love God has for us and the love we’re to show others because of it. (Read Ryan’s different take in his Review Here)

Favorite Track: “Call My Name”

5) The Gaslight Anthem – American Slang

Thank God for The Gaslight Anthem. They make great rock music. Period. No guy-liner. No political sermonizing. Just Rock N Roll. ‘Merica!

Favorite Track: “American Slang”

4) Jimmy Eat World – Invented

Jimmy Eat World continues to do what they do best; create soaring, heart-on-sleeve anthems that get stuck in your head forever.

Favorite Track: “Movielike”

3) Sara Bareilles – Kaleidoscope Heart

Sara Bareilles is charming, witty and sarcastic, all while being vulnerable lyrically and full of hooks musically. She’s pop’s saving grace.

Favorite Track: “Hold My Heart”

2) The Hold Steady – Heaven Is Whenever

Craig Finn’s characters are usually making the wrong decisions, but somehow, he infuses hope and joy into their lives and these songs. (Full Review Here)

Favorite Track: “Hurricane J”

1) Audrey Assad – The House You’re Building

Intelligent and poetic, Audrey Assad sings with a conviction that can only be described as…true.

Favorite Track: “Known”

Reminisce with the Top 10 Albums of 2009 Here>>

I’d planned on doing some things around my apartment as I turned on Chapman’s new cd – thought I could have it on as background music as I went about my day. By the middle of the second track, I was glued to my couch, a complete wreck…

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We summarize and disect the week that was. Minneapolis radio personality & GooseRadio contributor Alex joins me to discuss Obama’s trip to Copenhagen, Sarah Palin’s new book, and Matt Damon’s new film The Informant. He also answers the age-old question – why are musicians always so sad?

Then Aaron White of Faith & joins us in our “Geek Beat” feature. Aaron profiles the new Zombieland movie, of which he was treated to an advanced screening. Aaron explains how the movie is surprisingly funny and even… hearwarming?! Also discussed – the new ABC prOgrUm “Flash Forward”.

Finally, Twin Cities’ radio legend & current college professor Mark Seignious joins us from his son’s football game. Mark tells one of the funniest stories you’re going to hear – how his friend fell asleep in the Atlanta airport and wound up launching a loud repudiation of former President Jimmy Carter’s recent statements in his sleep. Also covered is the Obama speech at the UN & new Christian musician Sara Beth Geoghagehan (more info on her after ‘the jump’).

New Artist Sara Beth Geoghagehan (Go-hay-gen) —

Here she is On Facebook & here’s the story from World Magazine mentioned by Mark during the podcast.

There’s something in David Gray’s voice on Draw the Line, his 7th studio album, something unpolished and raw that gives the music a depth and feeling that’s not always been there. It’s not always easy to pinpoint exactly what he’s singing about, the lyrics are brilliant and puzzling all at the same time, but you know that whatever it is he’s trying to convey, he really feels it, and he wants you to as well.

Draw the Line teeters back and forth between subdued tracks like the melancholy “Kathleen” and fuller, more robust offerings like the excellent “Jackdaw” and the lead single “Fugitive.” There are even moments when Gray seems to be channeling his greatest influence, Bob Dylan, especially on the title track. However, the most compelling moment on Draw the Line is the closing track “Full Steam”, a vaguely political anthem that’s actually a duet with Annie Lennox.

Throughout Draw the Line there’s a heightened awareness of the human condition in all of its depravity, frailty and mortality. Cryptic lines like “It’s not the flesh we’re after but the howlin’ ghost within” give way to more direct assertions like “If the ground should open up and swallow me it would not stop the minute hand from ticking off.” When you couple that with the Biblical references and strange allusions to God found on the record, Draw the Line makes for a very interesting listen indeed.

There are no love songs or easy answers found here, but what is here is very real. Real truths and feelings conveyed in moving, beautiful ways. Gray’s prior release, Life in Slow Motion, had a sheen, almost a slickness to it, but that’s all been stripped away on this record and we’re left with something quite remarkable.

Alex Whitworth - GooseRadio

If buying albums was a drug habit, I’d be an addict. Hang with me here, you see, once I’ve listened to an album and a “high” has been achieved, I move on to another band/album/genre looking for a similar, nay, greater rush of emotion and enlightenment. Thus far, 2009 has had a pretty low occurrence of highs. So, it was a welcome and pleasant surprise to happen upon the debut from fun., Aim and Ignite. For the uninitiated, fun. is the new project from Nate Ruess, formerly of The Format, a painfully underrated emopop act that transformed itself into an eclectic pop band on their second, and final release, Dog Problems.

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“Intentionally inorganic” is the phrase Derek Webb uses to describe his latest effort, Stockholm Syndrome, and while his signature acoustic sound may have been replaced with electro-beats and computer-synthesized bells and whistles, the allure of Webb, with his bold, often shocking statements, is still firmly in place.

In fact, its one shocking statement in particular that seems to be making this Webb’s most intriguing and controversial offering to date, but more on that in a moment. Overall, Stockholm Syndrome doesn’t veer far from Derek’s usual topics de jour of social justice and liberty in the Spirit, and perhaps the most moving moment on the record occurs during “The Proverbial Gun”, an analogous tale of a murderer being set free despite his crimes, in which he strains his voice to sing the word “free” over and over.

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