Friday, May 30, 2008

In the Dashboard This Week - Mason Jennings, the Cat Empire

A couple of weeks ago, we had this as our Lightning Strikes featured CD. The label wanted to use it ahead of his City Hall show, and all we had at the time was an advance single ("Fighter Girl"), so we played that all week. At the time my impression was "Best Lou Reed song I never heard." Now that I've got the album and have spent plenty of time with it, the needle leans more toward a Jonathan Richman appeal in its deceptively simple lyrics and straightforward arrangements. In case you're wondering - that's a good thing. Faves: "I Love You And Buddha Too," "Your New Man."

Next we go down under for one of my favorite new bands of the past year (new to me, at least. You may have known them for ages. What do I know? I get flannel pajamas in the mail), The Cat Empire. We (music lovers in the US) have gotten too far away from music being a publicly-owned culture, so it's a welcome thing that Cat Empire sounds like a band that you might hear at a charity party or very expensive wedding. In its mix of r&b-ska-jazzy-occasionally Weillish-party mix, it's got heart. And brains.

Sound: Flash player from Cat Empire's website (check out "The Chariot" & "So Many Nights")

1 comment:

Lightning 100's Lt. Dan said...

The Cat Empire is great live! Caught their show at the Mercy Lounge recently and thought it was out of this world!