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Chase This Light
Chase This Light
Price: $12.54
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars album of the year, November 26, 2007
This review is from: Chase This Light (Audio CD)
"Futures" is easily one of my favorite albums of all time. That one caught me at a really tough time in my life, and the songs spoke to me like almost no music had ever done before. Every song on that album means something to me, and i absolutely love each and every one of them. After that album I went back and bought "Clarity" which was said to be the best album these guys ever recorded. I was underwhelmed. It was a different sound, less emotional, less catchy, and maybe just because of what "Futures" meant to me, far less powerful. In the years since, I've become somewhat fond of both "Clarity" and "Bleed American", though it was always individual songs that caught me on those albums, not the work as a whole. Not like "Futures". "Stay on my side tonight" was the closest. There it became clear that more than anything, I loved the fresher, softer, slightly more produced new sound of Jimmy Eat World. "Disintigration" was a masterwork, as good as most of "Futures", and the other three were great too. A different sound, but that same power, that same amount of emotion.
When I got wind of "Chase This Light" being released, my first feeling was one of high anticipation. Very few bands had ever been able to reach me like they did in fall 2004, and I was pumped to hear the first full album since. As the release date drew nearer however, i became less sure. Live versions of "Big Casino" and "Electable" reached my collection and i was less than impressed. "Big Casino" was decent, but "Electable" soundled like a muddled out of tune mess. I got to thinking that there was absolutely no way this could top "Futures".
Well, I was right, but at the same time, I've been immensely impressed and pleased with this album. "Big Casino" turned out to be one of the catchiest songs of the year, and that trend continues throughout the first five tracks. "Electable", wow that one blew me away. What started out as sub-par has grown into one of the best rock songs on the decade. It rocks harder than anything the band has done since "Bleed", and it serves a nice break from the midtempo rock songs. The bridge is nothing short of sublime. A true anthem. Thats not to lessen the worth of tracks 2-4. "Alway Be", the second single, is one of my favorite songs on the album. Not only does it boast the catchiest chorus on the album, the lyrics are also brilliant. "Gotta Be someones Blues" is the weakest track on the album. It just doesnt really fit well with the mood, and i would much rather have seen "Be Sensible" in its place.
Where this album truly excels is in the last 3 tracks. The title track and "Firefight" are both wonderful musically and lyrically, both boast gorgeous choruses and bonechilling bridges. But nothing, absolutely nothing compares to the closer that is "Dizzy". I don't know what it is with this band, but they always end their albums in brilliance. "23" from "Futures" was breathtaking, as was "My Sundown", and even though the 16 minutes of "Goodbye Sky Harbor" was a bit drawn out, it was still one of the best songs on "Clarity". "Dizzy" is not only one of, if not THE best song this band has ever written, not only the best song of the year, but one of the best songs ever. period. This song gave me chills from the first listen, and continues to do so 30 or 40 plays later. The song just builds and builds, spinning bittersweet lyrics in as it adds piano. It continues to build to the climax that is the bridge, where everything drops out except for a single electric guitar and Jim's voice, souring high above everything. The lyrics here are the best, the most emotional and powerful on the entire album. As the bridge concludes Jim lets out one final emotional wail, and the rest of the band comes crashing back in for that final chorus, that chorus that means more somehow, than all that came before it. The track is beautiful, flawless, and powerful as hell. It ends the album in true brillance, leaving the listener with chills, in awe of what just came out of their speakers. Thats something that all the money in the world can't buy. That my friends, is true perfection.

Exile on Mainstream
Exile on Mainstream
Price: $11.99
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the long awaited return, October 5, 2007
This review is from: Exile on Mainstream (Audio CD)
Matchbox twenty was perhaps my favorite band of the 90's. Yourself or Someone Like You was a masterpiece. Featurining just the right balance between mainstream and not so mainstream alternative rock. The album spawned 6 radio singles, all but one of which are included in this hits package. Mad Season was a little more poppy, and had fewer straight up rock tunes, but was nevertheless excellent. The same went for 2002's More Than You Think You Are. Then the band vanished. Rumors ran wild that they had broken up, but in truth, they were merely working on solo projects. I went crazy with anticipation for Rob Thomas's solo album "Something to Be" in 2005. After all, everything this man had ever touched with his band or without (smooth with santana comes to mind) had been absolutely golden. Unfortunately, the solo record was merely average. Thomas went a more experimental route that i would have liked and although he delivered some great songs, not one of them was one of those anthems that could survive a decade and still sound fresh. but also problematic was that the album contained a few mediocre tracks, something unheard of in the work of rob thomas. was he losing his touch? over two years later we finally have the answer. no.
"How Far We've Come" is easily the best song of the year. It definitely is a new sound for the band, but its as catchy as anything else you'll hear this year, and its lyrically mindblowing. Thomas rattles off the verses rapidly before reaching the chorus which will surely be stuck in your head for days. the first time i heard it i went crazy with anticipation again. a new matchbox twenty album was finally in the pipeline. of course, i was setting myself up for more disappointment as i soon found out that the album would be a greatest hits album and would only include half an album of new material after which thomas would begin recording his second solo album. the only question i have after hearing the new tunes is why thomas would ever feel at home without his band. Obviously all of the new songs are excellent. A mix of harder rock (If I Fall, All Your Reasons) to mid tempo ballads (Can't Let You Go, These Hard Times). Interestingly, most of the new set follows the example of the first single. Most of them dont sound much like anything the band has done up until now. These Hard Times though is classic MB20, with a bridge that will bring memories of the 90's flying back.
The second disc is obviously great as well, but wont do much, even for casual fans as the band has only put out three albums, and buying all of them is certainly the best way to go no matter what. The album is very straightforward, going through all the bands big hits in chronological order. Dont get me wrong, the songs are great, but some of the best songs in the collection arent here. Songs like Hang, Shame, Kody, Rest Stop, Leave, The Burn, The Difference, All I Need, Downfall, and Hand Me Down are all five star tracks that were never singles. That said, the album is fun to listen to, and really got me back into MB20. The tracklist does leave a little to be desired, but it concludes with Bright Lights, the best song Rob Thomas ever wrote, and at the end of the day, thats all you really need to make an album perfect.

Life In Cartoon Motion
Life In Cartoon Motion
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars most unusual music ive heard in awhile, May 6, 2007
This review is from: Life In Cartoon Motion (Audio CD)
The first thing that has to be said about Mika is that he has an excellent voice, as he should since he studied opera in college. Second is that the comparisons to Freddie Mercury aren't 100% valid. It's definitely true that he sounds like that rock god on opening track and first single "Grace Kelly" but i don't hear any other spot reminiscent of Queen on this album. This is a good sign, as he shows his versatility throughout this album. "Grace Kelly" is one of the catchiest songs I've heard in a long time with absolutely brilliant vocals. It will take me awhile to get tired of this one. However, the problem with this album is its usually either hit or miss. The second track "Lollipop" is absolutely heinous in every way possible, and surprisingly there isnt even a sign of the vocal talent showcased on the opener. By the time a tonedeaf little girl starts yelling the verse of this song, you know its time to skip to the next track (even on first listen) and delete it from your playlist. Things get infinitely better on "My Interpretation" where Mika turns in a nice piano based midtempo ballad with good vocals and a more normal atmosphere than that of "Grace Kelly".

I'm a little bit undecided about the second single "Love Today". There are certainly moments of vocal brilliance, but there are also moments where Mika just speaks the words in a very flamboyant manner that merely comes across as irritating. Not terrible, but not great either. Mika showcases yet another side of himself on "Relax(Take It Easy)" which sounds so much like the old 70's discos jams its funny to realize that it came out in 2007. "Ring Ring" is another piano based tune, but this one is more upbeat, kind of a mix between the styles of relax and my interpretation. The album highlight for me is "Any Other World", which is packed with lush string arrangements and excellent vocals (once again). When i first heard this song, I had to stop everything else i was doing and just let the music wash over me, something that happens with only the very best songs.

"Billy Brown" is a funny lighthearted song that tells the story of well...a man named billy brown. "Big Girl" has been hyped as a modern day "Fat Bottomed Girls", but the song just isnt very good musically, and ive come to skip it almost every time, and i'm not a big fan of "stuck in the middle" either, because its probably the least memorable thing on the album.

The end of the album is a real tour de force though. Starting off the conclusion is yet another piano ballad, "Erase", another one of my favorites on the album, and the pomp and circumstance crescendo of "Happy Ending" could be the next great graduation song, filled with more pianos, strings, and gospel choirs than any southern church. It might seem a little bit cheesy at times, but the song works well as an almost closer. The hidden track, "Over My Shoulder", is completely different than anything else on this album. Just piano and voice and very slow, it closes out the album in a luminescent and quite haunting manner.

So basically, Mika's debut album is about half hit and half miss. Luckily, the good moments outweigh the bad, and who knows, you might like the overwhelming weirdness of "Lollipop" and "Love Today". Overall, its a nice breath of fresh air, and a good album in a year that hasnt seen many yet. 3.5 stars.

Music From The OC: Mix 5
Music From The OC: Mix 5
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4.0 out of 5 stars the beginning of the downfall, April 6, 2007
The first 3 "OC" mixes (1,2, and 4, i don't count the christmas one) were all brilliant soundtracks filled with just a small fraction of the music featured on the show. Although I didn't always agree with the song choices as the best from the show, it was very rare when I disliked one of them. The same does not hold true with "Mix 5", which features at least 3 bad songs, several others that are rather mediocre, and very few tracks that I can clearly recall from the show. This is perhaps because with the 3rd season of "The OC", the writing became less memorable, and I suppose with it, so did the songs. Budget for music was also obviously decreased from the second season, as the number of bands that performed on the show dropped from half a dozen to one or two.

The disc opens with "Rock & Roll Queen" by The Subways (one of the only bands to perform during the season) and Kasabian's "Reason Is Treason", a pair of upbeat songs, both of which are good but not great. "Rock & Roll Queen" declines into an irritating screaming finale, but is still remarkably catchy, but "Reason Is Treason" wears thin rather quickly. "Wish I Was Dead Pt. 2" by the Shout Out Louds is a slightly better acoustic song with an instantly memorable chorus.

"Daft Punk Is Playing At My House" by LCD soundsystem is absolutely excrutiating, involving no singing or musicality whatsoever, and "Kids With Guns" from the gorillaz is no better. "Requiem For O.M.M." by Of Montreal, is slightly better, but no less irritating and sickly boring.

But within these throwaway tracks there is still hidden some true gems. Rogue Wave's publish my love is brilliant indie-pop, and Youth Group's cover of "Forever Young" is simply gorgeous, marking itself as a true "OC" staple. The end of the album is a true tour-de-force, made up of 4 great tracks. The Kaiser Chief's offer up "Na Na Na Na Naa", which despite its nonsense lyrics is the exact brand of indie rock that made "The OC" famous in the first place. Phantom Planet's acoustic take on their theme song with "California 2005" was the first memorable song to be played in season 3 and therefore deserves a place here.

The other two tracks are some of the most brilliant on the album. Stars' "Your Ex-Lover Is Dead" is a gorgeous indie ballad marked by excellent lyrics and beautiful vocal harmonies from the two singers (one male one female). The soundtrack closes as it should with Imogen Heap's epic "Hide & Seek", one of the most memorable songs ever played on "The OC" from the shocking season 2 finale, this one truly belongs in "The OC" hall of fame. Since it was used on the show, the song has become very well known for its tight nit vocal arrangement. One listen will reveal why this song is so well loved among fans: because it sounds like nothing else you've ever heard of, something only "The OC" could introduce.

In the end, the album is saved by the strength of its second half (with the help of a few tracks from the first). The highlights manage to overcome the low points to create what was the last good "OC" soundtrack. It may be one of the weakest, but it still contains some must hear gems.

Rise & Fall of Butch Walker & The Let's-Go-Out-Tonites
Rise & Fall of Butch Walker & The Let's-Go-Out-Tonites
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars by far the best of 2006, April 5, 2007
I discovered Butch Walker over 2 years ago when i heard the song "Mixtape" on a TV soundtrack. The song immediatly stood out among all the others with the piano intro, the outstanding lyrics, and a great voice. Since then, Butch Walker has become my favorite artist in music and I have built a huge collection of his solo albums, live material, rare tracks, and all of the music I could find from his previous band the Marvelous 3. While I think "Letters" beats this one out by a nose, this album is one of the best to be released in a long time. If music sales were actually based on talent, then Butch Walker would be at the top of the pack. Not only is he a brilliant and original vocalist, a wicked guitar player, and the best performer i've ever seen, his songwriting abilities are better than those of any living musician. I realize the boldness of this claim, and will stand by it forever more. One listen to any of his albums will reveal exactly why this claim is true.

Walker, who seemed infinitely depressed on "Letters" is back to his happy and humorous self, something which is made immediatly clear by the title of the album. "The Rise And Fall Of Butch Walker And The Lets Go Out Tonites!" borrows from the title of the David Bowie album ("Rise & Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars") and for good reason, because the glam-rock influences are essentially the theme of this album. The opening track, "Hot Girls In Good Moods" is an infectiously catchy rocker and sets the tone for the rest of the album. It sounds like nothing else walker has ever done before, which seems to becoming customary with each album as his sound progresses. The next track, "Ladies & Gentlemen The Lets Go Out Tonites" is equally catchy with a jazzy piano riff igniting the background as Walker sings and plays. The song also begins a theme of anti-conformity that runs throughout the album (everybody telling the some joke/singing the same chorus to a song that hasnt even been wrote) (there is no right or right or wrong way for certain/make up your own version sing along).

The first single "Bethamphetamine" utilizes another sweet piano intro before exploding into an excellent rock song. This one has some great vocals as well. The catchy song streak continues with "Too Famous To Get Fully Dressed", and then Butch finally slows it down with "We're All Going Down", by far the weakest song on the album (or on any Butch album for that matter). It's not really bad, but it's just kind of...odd and Butch keeps doing this weird thing with his voice on the chorus(its hard to explain). The song just isnt very good and kind of hurts the mood of the album. Still, its better than almost all of the music out there right now.

As it turns out, it doesnt really matter because he completely makes up for it on "Dominoes", my personal favorite songs on the album. The band isnt needed for this one where Butch just sings and plays piano (with and brilliant string section to enhance it even more. Its this albums "Joan". The song is about his girlfriends grandparents who married very young and were together for most of their lives. The woman (named Grace) eventually passed away, and the man (who has alzheimers)plays a game of dominoes to try to remember her. The song is absolutely gorgeous (especially the vocals on the chorus) and is so beautifully written that it would be hard not to be moved by it.

However, Butch doesnt let you dwell on it for to long, because the next track brings things back to the uptempo. "Paid To Get Excited" is an anti-conformist, anti-bush anthem and is by far the loudest track on the album. It's actually one of the best anti-bush songs i've ever heard with the chorus proclaiming: "be free to love the ones you love/free to hate the ones you hate/free to like the land you live on not the one who leads". The songs builds to the final verse where butch forgoes good vocals for a scream. Normally this would really annoy me, but it completely works here, mostly because the song is so well written. Not the best track, but its still addicting. "Song Without A Chorus" continues the theme where Butch spews all his hate for record labels who all want to find the same kind of boring pop artist, and reflects on his experience with the marvelous 3 ("well they'll probably say this sucks you know but i dont really care/ and i'll use the gunshot words so it won't get on the air"). When Butch was with the marvelous 3, the record label kept trying to control everything butch did, so the band decided to make an album they knew the label wouldnt approve of (the arena rock based "ReadySexGo"). This led to the label's decision to cut promotion at which point the band decided to break up.

But of course things kept going, as they do now. The next track "The Taste of Red" is another candidate for best track on the album. Not only is the one of the most infectiously catchy songs on the album, but one of the most catchy songs i've ever heard. Add another excellent string arrangement and you have a truly classic song. "Rich People Die Unhappy" moves things from glam-rock to alt-country. The song is completely different from anything Butch has ever done before. Most artists would never even dream of the genre switching the Butch does throughout this album, but he has the talent to pull it off, and this is another great track (though not a favorite for me). The oddly titled "This Is The Sweetest Little Song" is another great, mostly acoustic song that serves to begin winding down the album. The verse lyrics are some of the finest on the album.

However, the closer "When The Canyons Ruled The City" is simply in a different league. The lyrics are genius, built around a clever concept of personification. The song is a triumphant singer-songwriter opus, and is the only song that could close this incredible album (and the other song that could be the album's best). Brilliant vocals, songwriting, instrumentation, everything. Easily one of the best songs Walker has ever written.

In the end, every excellent song comes together to form a truly incredible and addicting work. Since it's release, each and every one of this albums tracks has breached my itunes top 25 most played, just another testament to its greatness. This man also puts on an excellent live show, and at only around $15, you get more for your money than just about every other band out there (especially since he usually brings 2 other bands along with him).

3/4 of a year later and I still cannot get enough of this album. That should be enough to convince anyone to buy it.

Under The Iron Sea
Under The Iron Sea
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a darker keane, April 1, 2007
This review is from: Under The Iron Sea (Audio CD)
Hopes and fears was one of my favorite albums of 2004. Every track was incredibly well written and catchy. the band exemplified the brilliance of my favorite instrument, the piano, and proved that guitars werent exactly a requirement for good music. My favorite track, the heart wrenching ballad "She Has No Time", quickly climbed to the top of my 25 most played on itunes, and I was anticipating the follow up for the next year and a half. When it finally came out, I knew this wasnt the same keane that I fell in love with it. The band came dangerously close to a break up some time in the 2 years between recording, and it definitely shows. The album is way darker, instantly noticeable from the opening notes of "Atlantic", whose quiet minor key sounds are a huge contrast to the loud major chords of "Somewhere Only We Know". However, the track works and leaves the audience thirsting for more. The next track and first single "Is It Any Wonder" is just as good. The track, which sounds like "Achtung Baby" era U2, is made up entirely of keyboard sounds like all the others, but you'd be hard pressed to tell the difference between this and a guitar. It also sounds way different than any Keane song ever has. The streak continues on the next two tracks, "Nothing in my Way" and "Leaving So Soon", which sees the return of the soaring falsettos that made me love "She has no time" so much. However, none of this compares to the next track. "A Bad Dream", the third single, is the best song on the album. Not only does the track feature the best vocals and lyrics on the album (its based on a poem by Yeats), its also probably the closest to the sound that made me love the band so much in the first place. "Hamburg song" slows things down after the upbeat first half of the album, and breaks down the formula even more with only piano and voice.

It's the second half of the album that keeps this album from being as good as the first. "Put It Behind You" is ok, but its not all that catchy or memorable like every upbeat song on the first album was, and the short interlude entitled "The Iron Sea" just ends up slowing things down. It doesnt really need to be there. "Crystal Ball" is catchy as well, but it doesnt stand out and i'm unsure of why this was the second single since there are still a lot of better tracks on the album. The last three tracks are too long, too slow, and should have been mixed in somewhere in the middle of the album. Thats not to say they arent still goods songs (though "Try Again" and "Broken Toy" are probably the weakest songs on the album), and "The Frog Prince" is still a gem. It's nowhere near as grand a finale as "Bedshaped" was, but its still a great song.

All in all, it's another very strong album, and even if it isnt as good as the first, it still has me in anticipation for the third album in almost the same way as the first had be waiting for this one.

Sam's Town
Sam's Town
Price: $9.78
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars killed, January 25, 2007
This review is from: Sam's Town (Audio CD)
today the killers are one of the most well known bands in rock music, but 2 and a half years ago very few people knew who they were. i am proud to say i was one of those. i discovered the killers in the summer of 2004. the first song i heard was "all these things that i've done" which i thought was amazing. i bought the album and instantly fell in love with it. everything was outstanding and addicting (with the exception of "everything will be alright"), and when i found the b-sides (under the gun and indie rock n' roll) i immediatly ate those up to. it was a long wait for the album and i bought it with heavy anticipation. the first single "when you were young" promised another flawless album. when it started playing i realized that this wasnt the same sound. i turned it off before i could reach then end, disgusted. the only song that caught my ear was "for reasons unknown" but i thought the rest of the album was throwaway, the definition of a sophomore slump. eventually i made myself listen to it, this time discovering "read my mind" and soon "why do i keep counting" and "sam's town". the more i listened the more i liked it. the point is that this album cannot be judged on one or two listens. it's a different sound but that isnt a bad thing. the album may or may not be as good as "hot fuss" but it is probably more consistant. its refreshing to see a band that isnt afraid to change. the only song i still dislike is "uncle johnny" and i find everything else to be positively great. and the fact that rolling stone gave this album 2 stars is sickening and further destroys their credibility.

it may not be as good as brandon flowers hyped it to be (the best album of the past 20 years?) but it is certainly one of the best of 2006. and if the bandwagon jumpers dont like it then they can just jump off because the killers were way cooler when nobody knew they existed.

O.C. Mix 6: Covering Our Tracks
O.C. Mix 6: Covering Our Tracks
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars decline, January 9, 2007
Over the past 4 years "The OC" has quickly risen to the top of tv soundtracks. Pretty much everyone has one song at least that they associate with the show, no matter how much they love or hate it. And that is why it is so heartbreaking that this is how the soundtrack series will conclude. As everyone who is reading this will likely know, Fox finally pulled the plug on the OC a few weeks ago. The show will finish its 16 episode 4th season and the series finale will air some time in february, but when it comes to the mixes, this is it. And what a pathetic way for such a great soundtrack series to go out. 1,2, and 4 were incredible, and while 5 wasn't as good, it still continued the quality of the series and had a few mindblowing tracks. But mix 6 shows that the music supervisors have finally run out of ideas. The quality of the show dipped last season, and as it did so did the quality of the soundtrack, but the show came back perhaps better than ever for season 4 and i hoped that the music would improve again as well. The first episode was promising, closing with keane's "A Bad Dream" and i was pumped. Sadly however, the rest of the season hasnt lived up musically to that episode. And here we have a cover album, and not only that, a cover album of songs that have already been featured and of songs that were all far better the first time.

thats not to say this mix is terrible. there is still some good music here, but there is nothing mindblowing, nothing that even stands out. Modest mouse's "Float On" is turned into a sunny indie pop track by goldspot, and "California" a slowed down piano ballad by mates of state, though we've all already heard it far too many times. Band's of horses delivers on "the end's not near", though it sounds remarkably similar to "the funeral", a song they actually wrote. Tally hall, probably the best band on here covers the killers "Smile like you mean it", probably the best song thats getting covered on here, and while its nowhere near as good as the original, its still nicely done. The two best surprises are "Into Dust" and "Can't Get it out of my head", both gorgeous slower songs, and of the originals i was not familiar.

but the good pretty much stops there. "pretty vacent" is absolutely excrutiating, "Debaser" irritating, and "i turn my camera on" retains no qualities of the origianl.

in the end the album is inconsistant at best, and boring and unoriginal at worst. i'm going to miss this show and these soundtracks, and its a shame this is how it had to end. at least the show will be able to go out with dignity which is more than i can say about the soundtracks. A cover album? It would be laughable if it werent so damn sad.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 6, 2007 3:55 PM PDT

Friends with Benefit: Music from the Television Series One Tree Hill, Vol. 2
Friends with Benefit: Music from the Television Series One Tree Hill, Vol. 2
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3 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars best music on tv, January 2, 2007
one tree hill. The name of the show itself comes from a song, as does the name of every single episode in its 4 seasons. Because of this, it was a apparent from the beginning that this show would be featuring some great music, and never has an episode passed that has disappointed me in its soundtrack. But thats not to say there havent been a few very poor choices, several of which are represented on the second soundtrack.

Lets start with the positive. The albums opener, Feeder's "Feeling A Moment" is absolutely incredible, the type of song you can discover so easily with one tree hill. This greatness continues into track 2, Jack's Mannequin's "The Mixed Tape", from the episode where they performed. If you like this track you should check out the album "Everything In Transit", because this is easily one of the weakest tracks from that album. Audioslave's "Be Yourself" is a masterpiece, featured in the season 2 finale, and Nada surf's "Alwaays love is gorgeous. While Gavin DeGraw's "Jealous Guy" didnt even have a memorable moment on the show, its still a decent song. Another highlight is "Son's Gonna Rise" by Citizen Cope, another fan favorite discovered by so many on this show. Tyler Hilton does an excellent job covering "Missing You", probably the best reason to buy the album since its an exclusive. Another exclusive, Bethany Joy's "Halo" is a fan favorite as well (of course since its performed by one of the stars).

But then comes the track that takes one tree hill's music credibility and rips it to shreds. Fall out boy is not only one of the worst bands of the past ten year, but in the history of music. The band possesses no redeeming qualities, not a single part of the music that might explain its inclusion here. Not only are the vocals absolutely heinous, the songwriting is less impressive than that of a 9th grader. And this band performed on the show twice? Why oh why one tree hill is this garbage included on an otherwise good cd?

But the great tracks make up for it. Jimmy Eat World's "23", despite being fairly old is mindblowing still, and best is saved for last. "For Blue Skies" by Strays dont sleep is a gorgeous indie rock gem, the perfect example of what should be played on this show. The kind of song you would never find anywhere else. Amazing.

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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars absolutely incredible, October 13, 2006
This review is from: Continuum (Audio CD)
I have to be honest, I didn't expect much from this album. I thought "TRY" was incredibly difficult to get through and mostly messy (though there were flashes of brilliance). I ordered this one based on my sadly obsessive need for new music. To say that I was pleasnantly surprised is an understatement. This record absolutely blew me away. There is nothing too poppy here, but there is also nothing that is overpowering like most of "TRY". What we have here are 12 cuts that make most of today's music look like childs play.

A smart move was made in putting single and most upbeat track "Waiting On The World To Change" at the beginning. Its extraordinarily catchy and will stay in your head after a single listen. The radio has sadly ignored this track when it deserves to be getting more airplay than any single John has ever released. Two of my favorite tracks off "TRY", "Gravity" and "Vultures" are here, with appropriate amounts of studio polish added. By this point my fears have been mostly silenced, though I still am wishing for those excellent ballads John can bust out (like "Wheel" and "Split Screen Sadness" from "Heavier Things"), but have not fear. The ballads here are as great as ever. There are two acoustic ballads, "Heart of Life" and "Stop This Train" that mostly gravitate towards folk pop, but there is still a bluesy flavor to them. The real highlights come in the second half of the album. "Slow Dancing In A Burning Room" is absolutely incredible, both lyrically and vocally, perhaps the best on the album. "Dreaming With A Broken Heart", John's first piano ballad, is equally impressive, and another favorite. My personal favorite track is "I'm Gonna Find Another You", a great soulful ballad, right down to the trumpets in the background. Its a great way to close out the album, though its over far too quickly.

But the great tracks don't stop there. "Belief" offers up an ice cool beat, and a great lyric ("We're never gonna win the world/ we're never gonna stop the war/ we're never gonna beat this if belief is what we're fighting for"). "In Repair" is a good bridge between the sounds of "Dreaming" and "Gonna Find". I have to admit that "Bold As Love" really did blow me away. There are certainly people who would laugh at the idea of John Mayer trying to cover Jimi Hendrix, but I laugh at the fact that he really pulls it off. Sure, its not as good as the original, but the guitar is DEAD ON AMAZING! It's nice to see John utilizing his incredible guitar skills (and he does so all over the album), because he's likely the best guitarist of his generation.

This album is completely flawless and completely addictive. I've found it hard to listen to much else for the past week, something that happens to me with only the very best albums. At best, this album is a huge improvement over anything previous in John's career and one of the best of 2006. At worst, its still amazing. Go buy it. I guarantee you won't regret it.

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