Music review: Tom’s Story, Foo Fighters, Suede

Jackie Dosmanos

Posted at Feb 15 2016 10:11 AM

 

Hey guys! We've been playing a new song recently. This one's called "Feathers" and it's really fun playing this song! Enjoy!Here's my birthday treat to all of youuu! -D

Posted by Tom's Story on Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Tom’s Story
"Tom’s Story"

This Pinoy post-rock three-piece breaks out in a big way. They dive headlong into pre-existing norms then pump them full of heart and fire with irresistible play-as-you-go fervor.

On their debut album, the dense guitars generally slide from frenetic blitzkrieg to melodic shimmering splendor and the prolific conversations among the instruments lead often times to jazzier zones. “VL Raza” takes tight and sharp turns between mellow and furious, the ferocity erupting to jazz fusion razzle dazzle. Preceding tracks “Dream” and “Light” proceed from ecstatic bursts of opening noise to placid tones for the rest of their middle-of-road drive.

In the context of its precedents, final track “Mugatu” is an unexpected surprise. Its mix of rock dynamics, ethereal textures and psuedo-shoegaze atmospherics ripples from brash to sensitive at the flick of a minor chord.

Wordless to a fault, Tom Story’s natural rhythm is upbeat and there’s only so much buoyancy you can coax in a post-rock setting. There are times when the album echoes a few Western influences but at its peak, the band reaches escape velocity to a whole new level. It’s A for effort and B+ for being a cut above their instrumental peers.

*****

Suede
"Night Thoughts"


Darkness of the soul has always been the staple of UK Britpop standard bearers Suede’s mind games. The band provides arty glam rock to propel singer Brett Anderson to more lurid yet very tantalizing depths.

After a string of hit albums in the ‘90s, Suede went on a decade-long hiatus and reconvened again in 2013 for the critically lauded "Bloodsports" album. In sound and lyrics, the new "Night Thoughts" pushes the last album to bloodier, flashier heights. It’s reconfigured glam rock as only Suede can do.

You ask yourself what do night thoughts bring and Brett sings, “…his clothes are covered in dew/As she writhes in twisted sheets” Another song goes, "The keys are falling from her coat/ As I weave my fingers around her perfumed throat." And in yet another, he laments, “She puts her faith in the moment/Outsiders/He puts his faith in the moment.”

Those moments pass with thoughts of bloodlust, sex, desolation and decadence, the stuffs in which Suede carved out a niche in Britpop’s long reign. With their latest album, Suede has an arsenal of gritty sounds to launch their bloody thoughts to the stratosphere. Exhibit A: “When You Are Young” opens with orchestral flourish before it hits its stride in loud guitars over Brett’s aching voice. Exhibit B: “Pale Snow” is a melodic ballad that roars to a Crazy Horse-like noise rock heroics. Exhibit C: “Outsiders” echoes with the omen and thunder of the late Lou Reed circa The Velvet Underground.

Suede’s trump card is astutely keeping their metal tendencies in the service of kinetic glam rock. Fans of the style and anyone who loves melodic hard rock will find Night Thoughts richly rewarding.

*****

Skrillex & Diplo
"Skrillex and Diplo Present Jack Ü"

The beat is king in this collaboration between EDM top dog Skrillex and globe-trotting rhythm ace Diplo. There’s reggae, rock, R&B, bossa and a lot of soul in their latest meeting of minds.

They’ve also lassoed in cool guests to give their heady beats some pop crossover prospects. Keisza sends her love in “Take Ü There” before the beat goes every which way. Aluna George’s “Mind” is a sensitive ballad that aims for a Top 40 singles slot. “Hold me close I wanna feel your heart” she croons on the way to Skrillex’s bumpy sonic collage. Bunji Garlin delivers a grand reggaeton performance traipsing around a smashing clatter borrowed from Psy.

The entire formula is bottled in the opener "Don’t Do Drugs Just Take Some Jack Ü" where all the fun and beats on loan from other artists are at their dance-friendly best. "Present Jack Ü" proves Skrllex can produce decent bangers and clangors out of a patchwork of global musical influences in tandem with a hit machine like Diplo.

*****

Foo Fighters
"Saint Cecilia"

Dave Grohl is back, unleashing all the passion and fury he kept inside while sidelined by a broken leg he sustained last year. The band’s latest release "Cecilia" is just a five-song EP but it covers just about all the bases to make a statement: Alternative rock remains a potent force!

Start with the middle track “Savior Breath” where Dave and company combine hardcore velocity and face peeling volume for a tight metalcore juggernaut. Forward to the final track “The Neverending Sigh” which breaks down to sections of Nirvana-ish grunge, punk and rock and roll.

Go back to the opening title track with its proclamations of faith in the patron saint of musicians.

The only aberration is the slow mover “Iron Rooster which nevertheless resonates with Neil Young’s “Cowgirl In The Sand.” The EP is an impressive holding release in between albums and at five tracks, captures the band at their tightest jam. It could be a signpost for the next resurgence for the Foo Fighters.