Saturday, June 3, 2006

Variety pack

What have I been listening to recently?

The short version, 1-10:
Jeremy Soule—Guild Wars: Factions: 8
Jeremy Soule—Oblivion: 6
No Doubt—No Doubt: 3
The Avalanches—At Last Alone: 7
Snow Patrol—Eyes Open: 8


Well, to start, a bunch of Jeremy Soule. Jeremy Soule is probably the best-known game music composer, and I like his work a lot. I've been listening to the Guild Wars: Factions and Oblivion soundtracks (only in-game for the latter). His Morrowind and Oblivion soundtracks are really understated for the most part, and work better in-game than they do for standalone music, but if you just want something to go on in the background, they're great. The work he's done for Guild Wars: Factions is more animated, and there are some really great tracks on the Factions soundtrack, available at DirectSong. (Click Guild Wars: Factions and then Listen at the top.) It's got a great Asian theme. Check out the Factions theme, Assassin's theme, and Day of the Jade Wind, all of which have sound clips available. Day of the Jade Wind reminds me a lot of the music from the Battlestar Galactica miniseries and first season, with percussion in front and everything else in back.

I also checked out the self-titled No Doubt CD. I don't really like it, and there aren't any tracks that I recommend. It's from back when they were trying to be a full-on ska band. Anyway, pass. Not worth the six bucks or whatever I paid for it.

I got The Avalanches—At Last Alone from eBay, and after waiting for it to arrive for two months and many emails with the seller, it's finally in my hands. It's a B-sides and remix album from a group that makes music entirely from random samples of sounds to begin with. Bizarre but entertaining stuff. Electricity (Dr. Rockit's Dirty Kiss), Since I Left You (Cornelius remix), and Everyday are all excellent. That Electricity remix is incredibly catchy. The full versions of those songs are hard to track down if you don't want to put down way too much money for an EP, but don't miss the Frontier Psychiatrist video if you haven't seen it. That's a pretty good example of their music; if you like that, you'll like their easier-to-find full CD, Since I Left You.

And then, of course, the new Snow Patrol album, Eyes Open. It's good, but I definitely liked their most recent album, Final Straw, better... this one is definitely better than their first two. Eyes Open is slower than their previous albums, and exudes less raw excitement. But, there's plenty of rock amusement to be had. Check out Make This Go On Forever, Set the Fire to the Third Bar, and You're All I Have. I think that most people reading this would probably enjoy at least one of those.

Also, on occasion, Nelly Furtado's single Promiscuous. Timbaland and Nelly are okay rappers, but I'd rather hear her singing. The music is entrancing, though.

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