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Thursday, April 14, 2011

2. The Strokes: Is This It

I was all set to talk about the new disc from The Strokes, Angles, which came out in March this year.  I had been eagerly awaiting its arrival as this band hadn't recorded an album since 2006's First Impressions of Earth. Listening to Angles, though, reminded me of how incredibly amazing their 2001 debut, Is This It, really is. Angles will have to wait until a later post as Is This It takes center stage today.

Bands such as Kings Of Leon, Franz Ferdinand, The Killers, The Libertines, and Arctic Monkeys might not have existed and been successful if The Strokes had not reinvigorated the idea that rock n' roll is supposed to be a blasty-blast.  Is This It was at or near the top of every major poll naming the best albums of 2001. It's also been tabbed as one of the greatest albums of all time by both Rolling Stone and NME...in all, way too many accolades to name.

The album starts off slow and with a super bass line in the title track and then "The Modern Age" picks up the pace and lets us hear how The Velvet Underground (an obvious influence) might sound today. The Strokes are one band that allows you to hear their influences, yet reminds you every second how original they are. "Barely Legal" is the first of many Strokes songs that sways you with a rollicking, sing-song chorus. Another stand out track follows in "Someday"...a fun story and another great chorus: "Oh my ex says I'm lacking in depth/I will do my best/You say you wanna stay by my side/Darling your head's not right...".

"Hard To Explain" was the album's first single and must have been a big hit in The Killers' households as they tried their best to recreate this sound on their 2004 debut album, Hot Fuss. "Last Nite" was another one of the original singles and "Take It Or Leave It" closes the album with a bang...Julian Casablancas chanting the title with frenzied spirit. The worst part about this whole experience is that it only lasts about 36 minutes.

Please listen to this album and tell me how much you enjoyed it.  I can't imagine anyone being disappointed...Have you ever been misled by this blog before? I've included the video for "Someday" for your listening/viewing pleasure.



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