Lots of new music this week -- two of them were gifts and one was used-- made me really happy.
Liz Melendez Band: Sweet Southern Soul: This was one of the gifts. I saw her with some friends in Atlanta. She was great. Most of what she did must have been off of this cd because I was familiar with it. Her guitar work is just blazing; she reminds me of one of the great Southern rock bands -- the Allman Brothers, maybe. The standout cuts on this cd are Drink From My Cup, Again and Again, and Justice
Liz Melendez Band: Mercy: This was the second gift. It is the debut cd for the Liz Melendez Band. I wasn't as familiar with the music on this as I was with Sweet Southern Soul and I haven't listened to this cd as much either but it is good. Her band makes really good driving music.
Nickel Creek: Why Should the Fire Die?: Totally new Nickel Creek and without Alison Kraus. I haven't had much of a chance to listen to this yet but I do like the three songs I've heard -- it's been my car cd so I've only gotten to really hear parts of songs at one time. It's a little more "poppy" than previous Nickel Creek but they've maintained that difference that attracted me to them in the first place.
White Stripes: White Blood Cells. I'm going back in time with the White Stripes, I guess. So far, they have yet to disappoint me. Hotel Yorba is the standout song on White Blood Cells, combining the White Stripes' rock edge with a 60's bluegrass sound. We're Going to Be Friends has an infectious hook that I like, while I Think I Smell a Rat is just great Jack White. This is what I love about this group -- that ability to go from punk to blues to 60's rock and everything in between -- there's Mexican movie music in the background of I Think I Smell a Rat.
Ryan Adams: Cold Roses: Ryan Adams has been recommended to me since his days with Whiskeytown. I always meant to get around to listening to him but I never did until now. While some of the reviews of Cold Roses haven't been favorable, I like it. I was expecting a rockier sound but instead I got a song like Magnolia Mountain, with its country flavor. I find I'm listening to Cold Roses almost as much as I've been listening to the White Stripes.
Killers: Hot Fuss: This was actually an accident. I keep meaning to drop my cd club membership and I keep forgetting. I forgot to reply that I didn't want this. Turns out I'm glad I forgot. I was actually familiar with many of these songs from the radio, which is amazing because I rarely listen to the radio. I like Smile Like You Mean It and Somebody Told Me. The Killers put me in a really rockin' mood.
Weezer: Haven't had much chance to listen to this yet but I'm liking Buddy Holly and The World Has Turned and Left Me Here. Weezer is not one of those cds that I immediately liked everything on the first listen, but I think it's going to be one that's going to stand the test of time for me. That's even better than liking it immediately -- discovering new things on each listen.
Carol King: Living Room Tour: This is the last one; in fact it's probably the last one for a long time. I love Carol King's voice, which isn't really at it's best here, but this cd is still fun to listen to. I could have lived without the introduction -- a singing "hello there." She could've used that time to sing one of her songs. And, although I like the songs in the medley on the first disc (Take Good Care of My Baby/It Might as Well Rain Until September/Go Away Little Girl/I'm Into Something Good/Hey Girl/One Fine Day/Will You Still Love Tomorrow?), I really wish she'd given each song it's own treatment -- except for Go Away Little Girl, which she could've left off completely.