Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Reviewing the Un-Reviewable

Note: all quotes from SuperHeavy band members are credited to USA Today. If you are one of those that always skipped reading instructions in school, then you might think I pulled an interview with the band out of my ass, which is alright with me... 

"As much as we love buying an album of rap tunes with this guest and that guest, we know it's all rap. This record goes in other areas..."

Mick Jagger, Joss Stone, Damian Marley, AR Rahman, and Dave Stewart - five incredibly talented musicians from four different countries that have united to create one of the most difficult to explain albums, no movements, of this decade. Appropriately named SuperHeavy, the group debuted their first album earlier today, and it already has press and bloggers boggled. We were already aware that their combination would be unique and ultimately be a combination of island tin drums, instruments from Asia we've never heard of, badass vocals, and of course the powerful kick drum that is Mick's neck vein. So despite anticipating some sort of surprise, we're still blown away by this project. Welp, here's my best shot at this decades most un-reviewable album...

Miracle Worker is by far the best song on the album, and the band seems to know it. The song serves as the subject matter for their first music video and has been talked about by everyone for weeks. Incredibly diverse in sound, Miracle Worker is the poster song for the groups effort to create "more than a group," Dave Stewart notes, "It's more like an attitude and a movement toward a new way." Watch the music video below, and witness not just a ridiculous, yet predictable wardrobe choice by Mick, but also some of the coolest sounding noises ever put together (Warning: don't fall victim to Damian Marley's outrageously captivating hair. Well, maybe you can for just a little while; I estimate his average shower length at 45 minutes, and that's sticking strictly to grooming). 


There are only a few other tracks that stand out and make a positive step towards the group's goal of creating a new musical movement - Unbelievable, Beautiful People, Rock Me Gently, and Satyameva Jayathe. Well either they're better songs, or I can't listen to Mick's iconic voice for 53 minutes straight. Both are very likely, and are probably related. It's my feeling that after the previously mentioned songs, the rest don't incorporate that wholesome quality that results from a culmination of culturally varied music. On half the album, Marley's "propulsive reggae-meets-hip-hop sensibility dominates the overall sound," and on the other half, Mick's legendary vocals lead the way. There's not nearly enough of Joss Stone. That girl is flat out sexy, and in my opinion, is what makes the band worth listening to. Although Slumdog Millionaire's AR Rahman draws curious ears in, it's Stone's bluesy voice somehow pulls each culture together. 

So here's the deal: Go ahead and purchase Miracle Worker, as it's simply a great song. I would hold out on SuperHeavy's debut album. If you have Spotify, stream it and keep it. If this band sticks together, wait for their second album before forking over any credit card information; it will be finer tuned, worth the wait, and Damian Marley's hair may make for an epic sophomore album cover...

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