5 ALTERNATIVE ALBUMS TO CONSIDER FOR A GIFT
A review by Gerswin Reynolds
Deftones – Diamond Eyes (2010)
Diamond Eyes was Deftones’ comeback album after bassist’s Chi Cheng’s accident in 2008. The album received both critical and fan acclaim, and it’s easy to see why; the album is as accessible as it is artful. Deftones have always been known blending pounding riffs and throat shredding screams, with ethereal soundscapes and sensuality, and this album is no different. Heavy tracks like “Royal” and “Rocket Skates” will keep fans of the older material moshing in the pits, while songs like “Sextape” and “976- Evil” will take the listener to dreamy pastures. The album has a cohesive and otherworldly sound that is enjoyable so many years later.
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Circa Survive- Blue Sky Noise (2010)
One of the biggest things going for this album is its massive hooks, thanks to singer Anthony Green’s sugary sweet voice. His wonderfully imaginative lyrical themes fit well with the band’s surreal music landscapes. This third outing by the band explores post-hardcore, progressive rock, and psychedelic rock but never strays too far away from being radio-friendly. Stand out tracks here are “Imaginary Enemy,” and “Spirit of the Stairwell,” offer both a healthy balance between all the styles on the disc.
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Queens of the Stone Age- …Like Clockwork (2013)
From the moment the listener hears the first notes of the song “Keep your eyes peeled,” it becomes clear that this QOTSA release will be a great ride. …Like Clockwork is QOTSA’s first album in a while and the time away has allowed the band to focus its efforts on solid song writing, churning out hits like “My God is the Sun“, “I Sat by the Ocean,” and “Smooth Sailing.” The songs here are great to just drive around to, as many of the songs in the band’s discography. Guitar riffs are as wild and imaginative as one might expect from the band, making this the album on the list for guitar players.
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Mew – And the Glass Handed Kites (2005)
Mew is a band from Denmark that has been making incredible music that’s earned the praise of music critics everywhere, but they have been overlooked by mainstream audiences for quite some time. The band can simply be described as dreampop and avantgarde, but those are just abstract words. Perhaps they are the best words. Many of Mew’s songs have pop structures of verse/ chorus/ verse/ chorus to balance out the intricate playing from the band. Each song on this album slides effortlessly into the next. The album has a distinct vibe that, very much like a dream, can be strangely beautiful. This is mirrored in the lyrics of the album that is often expressed in vague metaphors or stories.
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Kidneythieves- Trypt0fanatic (2010)
This little known band has been around since the late 1990s writing a blend of electronic music and rock music. Fronted by singer Free Dominguez, the band’s harder industrial sound is smoothed out by sweet female vocals, which provides another dimension to the music popularized by a male artists like Trent Reznor, Skinny Puppy, And Ministry. Trypt0fanatic comes eight years after the band’s breakout album Zerospace and combines the best of their music with great production. There are lots of interesting bits of electronica and drum and bass sprinkled between the guitar licks, and songs are never overwrought by both sides of the musical spectrum. The hooks are catchy, and the songs never get too aggressive for the average listener.
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I am proud to host a review on 5 alternative albums suggested to our readers by noteworthy musician Gerswin Reynolds. To find out more about Gerswin, sneak peek into his music background and bio at:
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