Three albums to lift you from your Thanksgiving food coma:
! John Zorn – The Last Supper: Film Works XXII (classical)
Zorn draws on ancient polyphony and modern harmony to create a gorgeous film score. The resonance of five voices and occasional drums opens a sacred space that alternates between the transcendent and the primal, a sort of A Capella “Rite of Spring.”
Listen to John Zorn “Dance for the Vernal Equinox”
! The Fireman – Electric Arguments (rock)
Paul McCartney’s bravest album in decades. The sound is bluesier, grungier than anything I’ve heard him do. McCartney pivots from songwriting to music making, more concerned with sound than melody – the sound is tremendous.
Listen to The Fireman “Nothing Too Much Just Out of Sight”
* Waylon Jennings – Waylon Forever (country)
A posthumous set of heavy country played with Waylon’s son Shooter. The set verges on epic rock, with covers of Cream and Neil Young among the more country-fried numbers. Waylon’s voice looms large, proving again why he was one of the best to ever pick up a microphone.
Listen to Waylon Jennings “Waymore’s Blues”
Killers – Day and Age (rock)
Killers hit the scene about 20 years too late. Their blend of rock, dance floor beats, and easy pop hooks would have made its way onto thousands of “best of the ‘80s” mix tapes. For today’s musical sensibilities, it’s still irresistible.
Listen to Killers “Human”
In the blog: This year’s overlooked gems. And stay tuned for a special guest review next week of the long-awaited Guns N’ Roses Chinese Democracy