Nick Lowe, Labour of Lust [Yep Roc]

The second solo effort by Rockpile bassist Nick Lowe may have been anchored by the saccharine single “Cruel to Be Kind,” but Lowe shows a gutsy, gritty side on the remainder of the recently re-mastered Labour of Lust.
Author:
Publish date:



The second solo effort by Rockpile bassist Nick Lowe may have been anchored by the saccharine single “Cruel to Be Kind,” but Lowe shows a gutsy, gritty side on the remainder of the recently re-mastered Labour of Lust. A heaping platter of country-fried power pop, the album is stuffed with Lowe’s tasty licks, served up with all the sass of an overworked lunch lady. Lowe’s roadhouse swagger on “Cracking Up” is downright delicious, and he spices up “Big Kick, Plain Scrap” with some NOLA-flavored funk. Elvis Costello bass man Bruce Thomas guests on “American Squirm,” kicking out Attractions-worthy lines that prove he and Lowe are like-minded bass brothers.

Image placeholder title

Related

Review: Jeff Berlin: "Low Standards"

Jeff Berlin follows up his previous CD, High Standards, with the same unique trio instrumentation: Himself on bass guitar, Richard Drexler on piano and upright bass, and ex-Headhunter Mike Clark replacing Danny Gottleib on drums.

The Avett Brothers I And Love And You [American]

When producing this North Carolina folk-rock band’s latest, producer Rick Ruben was likely reminded of his work on the 1994 Tom Petty album Wildflowers. Like Petty on Wildflowers, the Brothers brilliantly blend rock intensity with folk jangle, making timeless tunes with memorable melodies. Bob Crawford brings up the bottom, moving serious air through his upright. His contributions are at times stark and spare, leaving sonic space for brothers Seth and Scott Avett to play off each other. The Avetts have a knack for lyrical elegance and harmonic style, and their band, rounded out by cellist Joe Kwon, seems to have mastered the art of framing the Brothers’ work.

Vampire Weekend Contra [XL]

The idea of a bunch of upper-middle-class kids from New York City playing grooves rooted in African popular music styles like Congolese soukous and kwassa kwassa might sound anywhere from suspicious to abhorrent, but Vampire Weekend’s earnest indierock take on those genres absolutely works. Down low, Chris Baio plays it cool for much of the band’s sophomore record, but where he does eschew minimalism for chops—like on “Holiday,” a rollercoaster ride of a tune—it’s sublime. “Cousins” is another workout, with bewildering 16thnote flurries that will leave you wondering how the heck he does it. It’s definitely a disc worth checking out.

Nick Beggs: Prog & Proud

“WHEN STEVEN FIRST MIXED THE RECORD, I thought the bass was too quiet,” says Nick Beggs, recalling the final stages of his work on Porcupine Tree mastermind Steven Wilson’s new progressive rock opus, The Raven That Refused to Sing.