Thursday, March 26, 2015

Record of the Month

I figured I'd do a monthly 'what I'm listening to' kind of thing. This could be viewed as a lame placeholder kind of post. And probably it is. But it's my blog! So there! 

After years of absence, I was thrilled to see that the Mavericks have an album, Mono, out only two years after their reemergence.

While I do like the band, they can be hit and miss. Like their last album, In Time, had strong points, but were heavy on the Mariachi-like songs. There's only so much I can take of that.

I'm not sure I get the throwback to recording Mono in mono. It is certainly a more unique approach these days. And I get that the Mavericks can be a little throwback of a group themselves, but things were recorded in mono eons ago for a reason.

Sonically, the mono leaves the music a little mono usually does.

But there are troubles with the songs as well. Raul Malo's voice is fine - as always. The song selections or executions themselves?  Ehhhhh.....a little to be desired.

The problem might be that the Mavericks have done most of this before - and better. In a way they've painted themselves into a corner where they are happy to be. And many a time, I'm fine with them being there as well. But there isn't much new here.

I really like the opening number, "All Night Long", even if it sounds familiar. I like the big-bandish "Stories We Could Tell" if nothing else, for the newer approach.

Malo is great with a slower, vocal-driven song. He succeeds with "Let it Rain (On Me)". It kind of fails on "Fascinate Me".

There are late '50's and early '60s (mono years for sure) aspects to the disk: "the Only Question Is", "Stories We Could Tell", "Summertime (When I'm With You").  They hit their marks, but like In Time where the band over did it with the Mariachi stuff, with Mono they over do it with this vein.

Mono is all very pleasant, just not very special.

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