When I lived in Texas, I went to a number of rock en Español concerts, and without fail, someone would be wearing a Caifanes or Jaguares t-shirt. So when I ran across this retrospective at Goodwill, I finally gave into curiosity. I really dig the mix of British post-punk with Latin rhythms.
Nakamori Akina, AKINA BOX 1982-1989
I downloaded this 18-disc boxed set after finding NEW AKINA Etranger on vinyl, then discovering Fushigi while looking Nakamori up on Wikipedia. One of the first Japanese CDs I ever bought was CRUISE. I’ve always found the melancholy of Nakamori’s voice more appealing than Matsuda Seiko.
The Gaslight Anthem, The ’59 Sound
With the record and thrift stores shut, I’ve been listening to past purchases with which I didn’t spend much time. The ’59 Sound seemed like a big deal at the time of its release, but the snippets I heard seemed a bit too earnest for me. I picked up the album at Lifelong to see if I was wrong about it, and I was.
downy, untitled seventh album
I had barely caught up with the band’s fifth album, and they’re already on their seventh? There was an 8-year gap between album four and five, and downy has released three albums since 2013. Where did the time go?
Play this album next to Janet Jackson’s Control, and you wouldn’t be faulted for thinking they were born in the same era. Sam Sparro evokes the R&B sound of the 80s with such affection it makes me nostalgic for a style of music against which I actively rebelled at the time.
The Damned, Machine Gun Etiquette
I picked this album up at the thrift shop solely on the reputation of providing the name for Japanese garage rock band Thee Michelle Gun Elephant. And I don’t really like Thee Michelle Gun Elephant. But I do like this album quite a lot.
Jay Som, Anak Ko
I heard this album playing at Sonic Boom around the time of its release. I had intended to listen to it in full on a streaming service when I got home. That never happened. Nearly a year later, I snagged a copy at the thrift shop.
Andy Gibb, Shadow Dancing
This album probably came to symbolize what sucked about disco, but I don’t think it’s been given its due credit. There is some fine writing on this album, and its commercial success shouldn’t be a knock against it.