New album by my favorite band (six years in the making). The album came out late March, and I always listen to a new album for a week, and then let the songs mix with the other music on my iPod (iPod Touch by the way) before I make any final decisions on it. It has been long enough and I am ready to do a track-by-track review. I purchased the deluxe version (two extra songs) from itunes and also received two more songs for pre-ordering.
Saturday Nights and Sunday Mornings
1492: This is a song that was originally meant for Hard Candy, but Adam said they could not get a fast enough version for the album. Let's just say that the bootleg version of this song I had years ago was one of my favorite CC songs. I love the lyrics as well as the hard beat and the speed of the song. 1492 is a great song, and I too want to be a cowboy.
Hanging Tree: Somehow I ended up on a Delta flight last November that had a preview of Saturday Nights and Sunday Mornings. This song was on the list, and lets just say I fell in complete head over heels in love with this song. I love the way when it goes to the chorus the music actually feels dizzy. I also heard a quote Adam said about this song, "this song is about being a Judas to yourself." It is so true that usually you are the one holding yourself back. This dizzy life is just a hanging tree.
Los Angeles: The first song on the album that I had never heard. And as it started, I thought, what is this...rock country? I am not really much of a fan. And then it starts to go, "I am altrady there..." and I was bobbing my head. And then "if you see that movie star and me..." and I was trying to sing along with a song I had never heard. I had to pull out the lyrics. Needless to say, this song has become my favorite on the album, and I don't think anything will eve change that. This song could be a top-5 CC song for me. I also think this song is a definite #1 on the radio if they would release it. I tell you, Los Angeles, it is a really great place to find yourself a taco.
Sundays: My wife has this theory about Counting Crows records. She does not like the #4 song on any of their albums. She does not like this song at all. She has problems with the lyrics, it talks about rubbers and says bad things about mothers. I think the chorus is awesome and that I gloss over the main lyrics and just focus on the chorus, I have no problem with this song, but it is not one of my favorites.
Insignificant: This is another song that I had a live version of. The live version was much harsher, faster, and I think overall better. Not that I do not like this version of the song, I just think that I have heard a better version, and it is a live version. Can't wait to see them play the song live. I also have a small problem with the rhyming of insignificant and different. They do rhyme, I guess, the iteration by Adam just seems a little too much on this song.
Cowboys: This song was released early and the first time I heard it I thought this song is way too long and Adam was trying to write too much into a song. Then I kept listening and thought, this song needs this speed and the lyrics to prove how disappointed someone can be in themself. This is about how you feel like you are not worth what you already have, and no amount of talking will change how you feel deep down inside yourself. This is a list of what I should have been, but I'm not.
Washigton Square: This is another older song, that I have had (and loved for years). With this song you hear the way Adam feels when he finally understands that not only does everyone leave him, but he leaves everyone too. The only thing he really has is himself and the scenery around him. The harmonica on this song is awesome too. I dare someone to listen to the song more than 5 times and then say it is not awesome. Follow this freeway out into the air, I wanted to find me, I am traveling homeward to washington square.
On Almost Any Sunday Morning: This song is just haunting. As you listen to it, it feels like a song from August, where the music is light and Adam just sings over it. But you can also tell how much CC has learned from their 15 years of playing together. Not this time. Make a time to find your way. I got a little further today.
When I Dream of Michealangelo: I love this song. This is another song I had already heard, but I think this is great. I can imagine Adam walking into the sistine chapel and walking out humming this little tune. The one part I do disagree with is how Adam says we are never as close to God as we think we are. I dont think that is right. We can be as close to God as we want. And when he reaches out his hand to us, it is up to us to either take it or not to.
Anyone But You: This song is good, not great. It has great lyrics, but the music is like carpet. You think it is nice, but carpet it just carpet, you dont really remember it from house to house. The musci I think is what holds this song back from being great. A song full of Adam saying a bold statement and then taking it back in the same sentence. I think about you, I think about everything. See how he starts by making a big statements telling someone that they are on your mind. And then follows it up with, but I think about everything.
You Can't Count On Me: The radio single. I hated this the first time I heard it. Could not stand it. Now I sing it all the time and love to hear it. This song will grow on you, and the doctor has no lotion to make it go away. I can see why it is the single. If you give this song a chance it is good. It just takes multiple listens to hear it.
Le ballet d'or: This song is an example of what my wife says, "Adam doesnt know how to end something." The first parts of this song are great and I love it. But it never ends. This is a 5 minute song, but feels like 10. I say, get your point across and have fun, when something gets tedious it is time to stop. Adam does not get that. Sometimes it turns into a 10 minute epic version of round here. Other times you get a barely above average song like this one.
On a Tuesday In Amsterdam Long Ago: Love this. Have had it on my ipod for years. It was a really bad recording, so I had to strain to hear it. And I always did. When this song came on I would really listen to it. It has great lyrics and music. Come back to me. This is the song I am playing at my wifes funeral. Just so you know, the other song at her funeral is Come Back by Pearl Jam. Also, her and I always talk about the songs we would play at each others funeral, so it really isnt that morbid. I dont plan on attending a funeral for her for quite some time, but I did already promise her that I would let her go first (hopefully that is not too morbid for you).
Come Around: Loved the first time I heard it. This song is an example of why I love CC. Great music, the guys are playing their instruments. There are all these hidden musical gems in here. It is like Hangin Around - a party song that Adam wants you to think just happened, but really listen to it and it is processed and put together to perfection, every clap and background vocal placed exactly where it would impact you the most. Same here, the piano, the drum, all the other isntruments I do not know. Keep changing and new ones start and end and let others take over. This song is a master class on how tot put together a song.
End of the regular album.
I will be back tomorrow to talk about the bonus songs that I recived for buying the version of the album I did. Just so you know, it is a very worthwhile two extra dollars. My overall grade for this album: 5 stars out of 5 stars. 10 five star songs. The lowest song is 3 stars. Pretty good. If you give this album a chance, you will love it to.
1 year ago