I don’t know if it is because of the holidays, but November was just flat out not good for music.
Though the pickings were scarce, there were a few good ones. I appreciated Fearless Records‘ latest Pop Goes Punk compilation, which features hardcore and pop-punk bands covering Top 40 singles. I wouldn’t say these are really good, but they are fun. My favorites are Set it Off’s version of Arianna Grande’s, “Problem” and Volumes’ cover of the Drake song, “Hold on We’re Going Home.”
The comeback album from 00’s indie band Copeland also deserves a listen, as the last release came in 2008 with You Are My Sunshine. Copeland was a band I was sad to see go, but am glad to have back — especially with such a brilliant and beautiful new album, Ixora. The album features piano-driven alternative rock that sounds like a mix of Andrew McMahon (Something Corporate, Jack’s Mannequin) and the Transatlantisim days of Death Cab for Cutie. Ixora has a capturing sound with loud, bright guitars and piercing drum beats, reminiscent of The National. Check out these tracks: “I Can Make You Feel Young Again” and “Erase.”
Now for the bad.
Dare I say it, but I really wasn’t a fan of the latest Foo Fighters album Sonic Highways. After reading countless glowing reviews, I can’t really see what all the hype was about. I love the Foo Fighters and the HBO series that lead up to the release (also titled “Sonic Highways”), but the anticipation just didn’t live up to my expectations. Sonic Highways features eight songs that seem to sound exactly the same. Usually very dynamic, the Foo Fighters sound tired on this album. I just hope this doesn’t mean they haven’t entered a greatest-hits era already.
I’m a huge fan of the entire Pink Floyd discography (The Wall being my favorite album, thanks for asking), but The Endless River (new album of unreleased material) was also a major disappointment. When it was announced, I was picturing a full-fledged selection of tracks that sound just like vintage Pink Floyd. However, the majority of The Endless River is instrumental and features only one song with the band’s iconic vocal sound. I always loved the stories Pink Floyd’s songs told along with its piercing music, yet without the vocals it just sounds like soothing sounds to sleep to.
To make matters worse, Nickleback released yet another album, No Fixed Address. The singing block of Ramen noodles with a face (Chad Kroeger) has managed to produce a Southern drawl in his vocals — even though he’s Canadian. Not cool enough to be Metallica, yet not country enough to justify a sound like Florida Georgia Line, the band is back with another headache-inducing album. And although people keep telling Nickelback to stop, the band keeps trying. So if you’re looking for a really good laugh, at least this album could provide it.
Caleb Dennis writes “The Scene” for the Colorado Daily every Thursday. Follow him: Twitter.com/TheWriterCalebD