The Slush Pile, or purging the playlists

At some point, I’m going to have to make a trip to the store and pick up something for the commute to work. I’ve had the same CDs in the pack for quite a while now, and it’s time for something new.

But I’m not inclined to stock up on new listening without first doing a bit of housekeeping on the current listening. So these albums will have to go into the slush pile.


Miscellaneous and unnecessary, especially in the wake of World World World.


I didn’t get around to listening to this EP during the Christmas season, so I think I’ll wait till the next round of holidays.

CHARA, kiss

CHARA, dear, this music is rather introspective. Your engineers do not need to compress the damn thing to holy hell.

Enya, … And Winter Came

Enya recorded a Christmas EP that was available from Target a few years back. I didn’t buy it, but I found it on the Evil Sharing Networks. Oddly enough, I didn’t find it too gimmicky. Now that Christmas release has been supplanted by this album, and I find myself wishing it were still available.

Guns N’ Roses, Chinese Democracy

I had a feeling this album would be dated before it even saw the light of day. I bought a copy anyway just to be part of the cultural Schadenfreude.

Joan Jeanrenaud, Strange Toys

After a quarter century interpreting the works of other composers, Jeanrenaud has spent the last decade coming into her own as a composer herself. The music of Strange Toys is often haunting and sparse, with loops serving as foundation for improvisation. It’s actually a good album, but I’m far too accustomed to hearing Jeanrenaud tear into some wild pieces.

John Adams, Hallelujah Junction: A Nonesuch Retrospective

This release screams "book promotion". The liner notes are little more than excerpts from Adams autobiography of the same title, and the works are presented as excerpts. Even in slices, it’s clear Adams has a broad view of music, using the rhythmic intricacies of minimalism as a foundation for something more cosmopolitan. I think I would have more to say if I heard these pieces completely. But in these small doses, I’m not sure I heard enough to get me on the Adams bandwagon the way the budget 5-disc set Phases did with Steve Reich.

Pelle Gudmundsen-Holmgreen, Kronos Plays Holmgreen

No. I don’t get it.

Stewart Lewis, In Formation

Lewis did an interview with the Advocate promoting his tour with Jake Walden and Tom Goss, wherein he criticized gay (male) audiences for having narrow music tastes that focused primarily on the club. He wanted to let listeners know gay guys can sling guitars too. If the Dead Betties, Bob Mould, Matt Alber and Tommy Keene are any indication, yes they can. But Lewis? His debut album In Formation certainly attempts to go for an edgier sound — given the obvious compression of the recording — and he’s not a wispy folkie like Dudley Saunders or Garrin Benfield. But his music is too much watered-down Melissa Etheridge for my taste.

Spangle call Lilli line, PURPLE

Yeah, I’m sticking with ISOLATION.