SHARK SANDWICH – Fast Album Reviews for Those on the Go
March 29, 2019 – Vol. 90
Music reviews come in all sizes, but you’re busy and do not have time for flowery language… or sentences, really.
Spinal Tap gave the world the greatest album review of all time:
Welcome to our “Shark Sandwich” — razor-sharp reviews that sum up an album in five sentences or less.
C Duncan – Health
Scottish multi-instrumentalist C Duncan returns with his third full-length, Health. Unabashedly pop, but packed to the rafters with interesting swells, psychedelic flourishes, and emotional vocal delivery, this is no teeny-bopper throwaway. This is a thoroughly adult effort, and it is the perfect companion for adults adulting. Far from a put down, think of the coolest restaurant you know and you can easily imagine hearing Health there. Act your age, and listen to Health. Smash car windows with a brick while you’re at it if you must, but you aren’t fooling anyone.
Rating: 4 out of 5 whistles
Best Song: “Health”
Son Volt – Union
Son Volt gonna Son Volt. Always a true statement, and if you have been following Jay Farrar and co. since 1994, a compliment. Union is a provocative title for an album that wrestles with unity in uncertain times, while acknowledging that said times are driving us apart. This album bleeds Woody Guthrie, and is folk as fuck. Union might be just what you need to hear in 2019, or it might enrage you, depending on your existing disposition.
Rating: 4 out of 5 whistles
Best Song: “Broadsides”
Lion Babe – Cosmic Wind
Multi-instrumentalist Jillian Hervey and DJ/producer Lucas Goodman make up the retro futuristic R&B/soul duo, Lion Babe. Cosmic Wind, even with honest, relatable lyrics, is ultimately clubby. Still, the overall feel is so chill that it is like being at a club in which you probably don’t have to worry about drugs or fights too much, and you can have a conversation without shouting. Perhaps that is the point, too. Try communicating with each other without shouting –something to think about.
Rating: 3.5 out of 4 whistles
Best Song: “Can I See It” (feat. Bilal)
Thayer Sarrano – Wings Alleluia
One part shoegaze, another couple parts Southern gothic, a dash of folk, some classic country, and whatever else she damn-well pleases, Thayer Sarrano has emerged this spring with a hell of a record. Wings Alleluia is the album that every singer/songwriter strives for, but rarely hits. Definitely a “lights off” affair, but Sarrrano isn’t unleashing a darkness to swallow you whole. Instead, she reaches out to the listener with hope. She isn’t just a musician, she is a guide.
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 whistles
Best Song: “Totem”
Ty Segall – Deforming Lobes
Ty Segall (and the Freedom Band) make a lot of noise on Deforming Lobes. It’s like White Light-era Velvet Underground time traveled to the 90s to punch Dinosaur Jr. squarely in the face. The MC5 and Television meet in a dark alley… These are the descriptions that come to mind, for better or worse. It doesn’t necessarily matter much just what the guy is yelping about, so much as it adds to the din of being trapped in a garage with a live hand grenade, and 4,000 guitarists plugged into the same Marshall stack.
Rating: 3.5 out of 5 whistles
Best Song: “Love Fuzz”
Lead-In Image – Composite
- Album and sleeve – Courtesy of imagefactory / Shutterstock.com
- Main album cover – Courtesy of Blablo101 / Shutterstock.com
- Album collage – C Duncan – Fat Cat Records; Thayer Sarrano – The Guildwater Group; Lion Babe – Lion Babe Music; Ty Segall – Drag City Records; and Son Volt – Transmit Sound.