TheBigBlack’s 2007 Non-Metal Top 10

Non-Metal Top 10

10. Soundtrack – I’m Not There

Soundtrack - I'm Not There

A double CD soundtrack to a Bob Dylan biography, that is made up of Dylan covers, including one by Eddie Vedder, and a lost Dylan track by the man himself from his ’67 basement sessions at The Big Pink. If this statement gets you as sexed-up as it does me, I don’t need to say anymore. If it doesn’t, you deserve nothing further written about this album anyway.

 

9. Robert Plant & Alison Krauss – Raising Sand

Robert Plant & Alison Krauss - Raising Sand

We all have a soft spot for Robert Plant. Hey was the bare-chested dude that sung ‘There’s a lady whose sure, all that glitters is gold…’ after all, so how could we not? His solo albums since the Zepp years have always been a bit of a gamble, as the quality has varied somewhat, but this one is a winner. Now, before you run out with your wallet in hand, I do have to mention 2 other factors that come into play – 1. It’s a duet album with American bluegrass artist Alison Krauss, and 2. It is essentially a country ‘tinged’ album… you have been warned.

 

8. Bad Religion – New Maps Of Hell

Bad Religion - New Maps Of Hell

Bad Religion are the elder statesmen of the punk rock genre. They were around before some of their recent genre-buddies were born, and will probably be there long after they are gone. Why? They are better than them – It’s that simple. Everytime they release an album, it is like a handbook on how to play modern punk for all those young bucks that think they have worked it out for themselves…

 

7. Foo Fighters – Echoes, Silence, Patience And Grace

Foo Fighters - Echoes, Silence, Patience And Grace

I am finding I am tiring a little of the Fooeys of late. I think Dave’s songwriting is better on this album than the last couple, and a few of the tracks caught me… but I fear I am finding it a bit too predictable at times. Don’t get me wrong – it is still a great rock album, with all the typical Grohl licks and vox, but that may be the problem for me really. “Dear Diary. I fear this may be the last time I will write about the Foo Fighters…”

 

6. Grinderman – Grinderman

Grinderman - Grinderman

Let me start with this statement – Nick Cave bores me, always has. I will drop my guard to say that I don’t mind some of the very early Birthday Party and Boys Next Door stuff, but only due to that delightful post-punk smell that seemed to hang on all his product. Then he packed up his guitar, and started writing ballads, and apparently the world was a better place for it… Well, he found his strat again, and he has decided to strum it a bit – and created a wonderfully dirty and raw album of guitar rock that will cause you mother to cringe. Let’s hope the new album with The Bad Seeds follows suit.

 

5. Chevelle – Vena Sera

Chevelle - Vena Sera

I have always avoided Chevelle because I thought they were one of those bad nu-metal clones. Turns out they are not. The are a Tool clone instead – and with the lack of any quality Tool / Maynard product in recent years, this is my new drug of choice.

 

4. Colin Hay – Are You Lookin’ At Me?

Colin Hay - Are You Lookin' At Me?

Ah, Colin Hay. What a legend. Don’t say “Who?” He’s the dude from Men At Work. Colin has been churning out quality solo (mostly acoustic) works for years now, mostly hard to come by being released on small labels – but I finally found one the year it was actually released, not 5 years later (as it normally happens). This is warm and rich, and his voice is more magic now than ever before. This guy should be in the rock ‘n’ Roll Hall Of Fame.

 

3. Eddie Vedder – Into The Wild (Original Soundtrack)

Eddie Vedder - Into The Wild

It seems Mr Vedder has taken the advice of his mum and started his own business. This is his first solo album away from the magnificent Pearl Jam, and it’s quite a good little listen. It’s a soundtrack to the Sean Penn directed ‘Into The Wild’. Mostly acoustic (and only about 35 minutes long), it is a very easy listen, and nothing like his Pearl Jam writings. ‘Hard Sun’ is one of my songs of the year. Oh Eddie – Again I will ask, when will thee marry me?

 

2. Smashing Pumpkins – Zeitgeist

Smashing Pumpkins - Zeitgeist

Billy – I tip my hat. I thought you would be in this year’s Dishonourable Mentions, but you have done the Pumpkins name proud. This pumps through some heavy stuff with a very typical Pumpkins sounds, and throws in the obligatory Corgan ‘nice’ songs to touch the heart strings (and send you to the skip button…). It’s all very sing-along worthy and addictive.

 

1. Porcupine Tree – Fear Of A Blank Planet

Porcupine Tree - Fear Of A Blank Planet

Porcupine Tree at number 1? Surely not. Yeah – It’s predictable I know, but just listen to them and you will see why. Gone is the radio-friendly stylising of ‘The Sound Of Muzak’ and ‘Lazarus’ – this is very much a return to the Tree’s more progressive mid-period work. The theme of the album is the apathy of youth to the world around them due to technology, and lyrically it is all very dark throughout, with music to match.

Honourable Mentions

Bob Dylan – Dylan

Bob Dylan - Dylan

I would have included this because it is Dylan. Unfortunately, I can’t include it as it is a compilation. Again, who wrote these damn rules?

 

Bryan Ferry – Dylanesque

Bryan Ferry - Dylanesque

An album of Dylan covers recorded by Bryan Ferry anyone? I did like this, although the only real thing lacking was that the songs were actually all Ferryesque – none of them had the Dylan flair…

 

Mountain – Masters Of War

Mountain - Masters Of War

Another album of Dylan covers? And this one with an Ozzy Osbourne duet? I think it gets mentioned!

 

Korn – MTV Unplugged

Korn - MTV Unplugged

I don’t usually care too much for Korn, but this is actually quite good. It has a couple of great moments like the duet with Amy Lee and the one with Robert Smith of The Cure.

 

Neil Young – Live At Massey Hall 1971

Neil Young - Live At Massey Hall 1971

Attention Neil Young fans – prepare for a religious experience. This is AMAZING. It would be in the 10, except it is live, and it was recorded 35 yeas ago, so it’s kinda disqualified…

 

Rush – Snakes And Arrows

Rush - Snakes And Arrows

All these years later Rush are still churning out a consistent product. Good on them.

Dishonourable Mentions

 Crowded House – Time On Earth

Crowded House - Time On Earth

Yawn. It must be trendy to destroy your own legacy at the moment? Read on for more examples, but possibly none as bad as this snorefest.

 

Linkin Park – Minutes To Midnight

Linkin Park - Minutes To Midnight

This actually starts strong with one of the fastest/heaviest tracks the band has ever recorded, and then dives into U2 influenced ballads. I never thought they were that good before, but I expected better than this.

 

Marilyn Manson – Eat Me, Drink Me

Marilyn Manson - Eat Me, Drink Me

Should be titled ‘Buy Me, Bite Me’. Eating shit from a dirty nappy is more appealing than sitting though this one again. Manson turns emo.

 

Rose Tattoo – Blood Brothers

Rose Tattoo - Blood Brothers

This is not Rose Tattoo. It’s a bunch of old men that got together with a young guitarist and tried to use the name of a great institution to carry a very mediocre album.

 

Silverchair – Young Modern

Silverchair - Young Modern

What the fuck? Is that a young Freddie Mercury in a tank-top up front? Where is Daniel Johns? Bring him back.

 

The Stooges – The Weirdness

The Stooges - The Weirdness

This is a legacy gone bad… If it wasn’t bad enough that we had to suffer the woeful Buzzcocks reunion album recently (with it’s polished and overdubbed production sounding like a Blink-182 album), now we get the legendary The Stooges doing the exact same thing. Gone are the pre-punk grooves of the legendary early albums. The trademark guitar tone is now polished, and the lyrics could be better written by a high school student. This is possibly the biggest disappointment of the year for me.

 

Queens Of The Stone Age – Era Vulgaris

Queens Of The Stone Age - Era Vulgaris

Hmmm. It would seem the Josh Homme creative well has finally run dry. Yawn.

2 thoughts on “TheBigBlack’s 2007 Non-Metal Top 10

  1. mk

    That better be a song lyric from your favourite 2007 disc or there will be trouble.

    Oh and it better be a metal release \m/

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