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rough 2 or so weeks

i feel like i've been sprinting the last couple weeks just trying to get past midterms, tests, lab presentations, etc. didn't help with that storm knocking power out and putting people's lives on hold, things were still hanging over my head.

i'm glad to say that i made it out intact for the most part. i have one more take home midterm i have to hand in on monday. i'm not particularly happy with how the tests all went so far... i don't think i did spectacular cause my focus just hasn't been with me since october began... but i don't think i did terrible either, so i'm ok with it. still lots of deadlines to be met, but i can return to my normal more relaxed go-with-the-flow personality instead of staying up all night to cram for tests.

so the sabres are playing tonight against the thrashers. game downtown's sold out, should be a really great environment. should they win, they will break the nhl record for most consecutive wins at the start of a season (though the sabres had a couple shoot-out wins to start off the season this year, and technically the leafs did it with actual wins as SO's weren't implemented until recently). the sabres are also on the verge of selling out their season already. quite a turnaround from the dark days of rigas ownership. even when they reached the conference finals and cup in the 98 and 99 seasons support for the team wasn't as great.

with the team on the up and up, other things are moving around in the city too, such as developer bashar issa proposing a new building replacing the hsbc tower as the tallest building in buffalo. issa is currently also redeveloping the statler towers. both projects are going to be done without public funds, and completely privately financed.

interesting to note too that ub's bioinformatics/life science complex should be fully operational with researchers moving completely into its labs as early as next month. here's a video from the center... it's kind of weird to see some of my professors in it.

so... onto the sloan. just some historical stuff that dug up. it was kind of interesting to read what the members of the band had to say about their second full length album 'twice removed', which is also my favorite one by the band. it's weird to think that patrick hated the album so much, cause one of my favorite classics is 'i can feel it'.

so the new album is quite a departure from the last two... which i think many people didn't care too much for. i on the other hand liked action pact quite a bit. it was a solid rock album, good for driving on the open road with the windows down on a nice summer day. pretty together was hit or miss... i liked half the album, mostly songs that were written by chris and patrick. the new record has sloan experimenting more with sounds, rhythm, and styles a little more. jay turns in some great songs, but i don't think it measures up to his output on between the bridges (poor boy being my yardstick for jay). it does retain a better cohesiveness like btb in the sense that some songs flow right into the next, which works well. case in point, i didn't like 'who taught you to live like that' when i heard it as a single... on the album though, the first track 'flying high again' which was a collaboration between all the members of the band runs right into 'wtytllt' without a break, and makes for a better listening experience. 'wtytllt' also works as a song a whole lot better once the entire album comes into play. andrew also turns in some songs of note on the new album. it's rare that i like how andrew's songs and will actively want to listen to them. most times, i don't mind listening to andrew songs in the background, but i don't go seeking them out. on this album though, there is a more than the usual amount of andrew material that i would probably seek out.

i really like how the album starts off with flying high again, and every band member having a little blurb to sing.

wtytllt gets a little better on each hearing for me. the rhythm is good, i like the piano in it, i'm not so big on some of the lyrics.

i've gotta try is an andrew song, overall it's a good song, though i don't particularly like the intro to the song. it gets more enjoyable as the song progresses. i think though, the blending of the first 3 songs makes this group much stronger.

everybody wants you is the first song that i really like on the album. it's got this acoustic rhythm guitar in the beginning of the song that is replaced by an electric. there are elements of the song that remind me of the clash. ahhh... there's also the great harmonizing that sloan is known for... on this one it's patrick and chris. the tempo of the song is good, rhythm changes, chord progressions, and time structure make for an interesting listen instrumentally.

listen to the radio is another one of patrick's ballads. it was an initial favorite, but after listening to some of the other tracks it's dropped a few. it's nice, and good, but not as strong as some of his other ballads. the synth is kind of interesting in that it's different, but i think it might be stronger without it. still a good one though, with patrick songs, even if they're not great... they are still better than most of the stuff out there... at least for me.

fading into obscurity. i really like this song a lot. i like how it's divided into a couple of sections, with different styles. i never really gave too much thought on lyrical word play until i was in a relationship with someone who absolutely loved chris' lyrics. the more i thought about it, the more i appreciated it. chris has some of the coolest lyrics around... lots of word play in this song... makes for an amusing... and entertaining listening experience. the end of the song is especially catchy.

i can't sleep is ok. it's not so bad because it's only a minute long, but if it didn't have that drawn out sound and vocals at the end of each phrase. i like the instrumentals on the track.

someone that i can be true with starts off pretty good, but ends up being ok only because of the repetitive nature and though chris can come up with some great lyrics for some songs, the lyrics to this song are kind of ridiculous towards the end of the song. it's not a terrible song, but i've heard better. i do like how it blends into the next track though... it makes it a little better.

right or wrong by jay... goot harmonizing, good instrumentals, above average. i particularly like the piano that goes along with this song.

something's wrong... first solid song by andrew on this album. i like the band's backup vocals on this song. interesting elements from classic rock. a little short... but it leaves you with a sense that you'd like to hear more... which isn't necessarily a bad thing.

ana lucia... from what i've read it's about sloan's manager's baby. lyrics are cute. how cool would it be if you had a rock song written about you? good song. rockin heavy guitars.

before the end of the race... first jay song on this album that i really like. the mix of instrumentals are really good on this track.

blackout is another andrew song that i like. solid rocking out, almost feels like it could've been included on their navy blues album.

i understand. this is a great patrick ballad. some lyrical elements aren't the best, but... the chorus is frickin catchy... especially with the harmonizing and handclaps! i like how patrick likes to put in horns on his songs. perhaps cutting it a little shorter would be better. good song!

you know what it's about, this and the next track golden eye kind of go together. both have elements that i like. however, of the two... golden eye stands out with better instrumentals and rhythm, though the lyrics are kind of weak.

can't you figure it out, is another jay song that is quite good. it almost feels like it could've been included on btb. love the guitars and beats on this song. catchy chorus... good moving bass line.

set in motion is kinda funny, i think my fav part of the song is the chorus.

love is all around is a different kind of sound for andrew i think. it works. i do wish though that he would stop using that effect where his voice sounds like it's 10 feet away from the microphone.

will i belong. i don't care for this song much.

ill placed trust. this is as solid a patrick song as any. i listen to this when i drive to school in the morning... cause i'm usually late getting out the door... and it pumps me up to start the day... cause lemme tell you... these days... i haven't wanted to start many of em.

live the life you're dreaming of. i like this song a lot. it's a chris ballad. "maybe i can make it happen, i can help you work and love." good chorus, and use of all member's vocals. classic harmony.

living with the masses is possibly my favorite andrew song on this album. i like the chorus a lot, and andrew sounds like he's actually close to the microphone on this one.

hfxnshc... frickin halifax, ns hardcore.... great patrick song... lots of energy, "new beat generation!"

people think they know me... it's kinda eh, but i think the chorus to the song saves it.

i know you... what's with the knowing song things with that thing? it's kinda slowish in the beginning... but speeds up. the song definitely gets better as you listen to it.

last time in love. good catchy song by chris. i like how he plays around with the down beats on this song, and changing of the times. good harmonizing... classic use of sloan handclapping. grooving bass line.

it's not the end of the world. the most folk sounding track of the album... see below.

light years... it's got catchy piano in it... it's an ok jay song... not my fav on the album though.

another way i could do it. the middle portion of this song rocks the hardest... but overall the track is quite good. i'm trying to think of who this track reminds me of... but the name is not coming to me at the moment.

so there you go... that's my review. it's quite a lengthy album... and there's a lot of variety on it. i think as a cohesive album it's not as cohesive as some of their others because of the variety. however they do try and blend things together with fading on the song... which does work for some of them. in terms of the quality of the music... there are definitely more hits than misses when taking the album as a whole. there are only a couple of songs that will be able to come off this record as singles. it's hard to assign something out of 10 for the album... because i think it depends on what kind of day i listen to it on. in terms of the concept of the album though... i'd have to give it a 9/10. i guess i'll have to wait a couple years to see how high this ranks amongst their discography, which so far looks like this: twice removed, one chord, btb, action pact, navy blues, smeared (which i like a bit... but i think many of the songs would be much better without the distortion), and pretty together... however i don't forsee it taking down twice removed as my top pick. also... hearing the songs live in the future may have some impact on how much i like the song.

everyone have a good weekend!

Comments (4)

K:

Glad you're surviving the school craziness!

Props to you for reviewing the whole album!!! Quite the monumental task.

I like the vastness of the CD because I'm still always discovering new things.

I love love love all of the Jay songs. I agreee that he really shone on Between The Bridges. However, I think he's lived up to it here.

I can't believe that Light Years isn't your fave. It's in my top 10 of most listened to songs.

I like all of short songs. I love artist who pack a good punch with a song under 2 minutes. I agree with you that "I Understand" is a great song, but could have been shortened.

I agree with your 9/10 rating. :)

k: surviving... yes... but just barely. only 5 more weeks until the semester is done... i'm looking forward to it... but also not... cause before then i have to write 2 10-15 page papers, have finals, etc.

christy: jay has some great songs on this album... but i feel like overall as a group... his btb tracks were stronger... though there are tracks on nhteoi that i would say are just as strong individually.

maybe i just have to listen to light years some more. the thing is... there are so many tracks on this album that want my attention =].

the whole under 2 min song thing... i think has contributed greatly to my appreciation of andrew songs. they really are quite good on this album, but not in such a large dose that it feels like they're just kinda plodding.

i'd like to see a couple people review it actually... like you and t.c. if you guys get a chance... just to see what you focus on... get a different perspective... if you guys have time that is.

You may have to wait for summer vacay for me to do a track by track review.

Oh wait, Christmas vacay is coming soon... so maybe if you're lucky... :)

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on October 28, 2006 12:17 PM.

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