Ultimate AlbumJustice - Countdown Underway (#245 - 5 Points) | Page 97 | The Popjustice Forum
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Ultimate AlbumJustice - Countdown Underway (#245 - 5 Points)

Discussion in 'Charts, rates etc' started by DJHazey, May 13, 2017.

  1. Evil by Interpol is such a great song! I am so glad someone included the album and recommended. Channel [V] in Australia had the best 304 or something songs of the year when they single was released and it was last! I am still wondering what they were smoking all these years on!
     
    LKane, DJHazey and londonrain like this.
  2. I remember Channel [V]! I also remember how they refused to play the official video to The Corrs' I Never Loved You Anyway because it has a line that mentions MTV. They aired a live performance instead in which Andrea sings "You're watching Channel [V] while I lie dreaming in an empty bed..."
     
    DJHazey, berserkboi and Filippa like this.
  3. I am so behind... again, (having exams in the summertime is diabolical), I'll try to catch up somehow, :(
     
    DJHazey likes this.
  4. Not really been keeping up with this, but 2NE1's second mini is a tremendous choice. Every song is 9/10 or above.
     
    ThisIsRogue and DJHazey like this.
  5. A&E

    A&E

    Catching up!

    Pandora's Box is one I should have checked out long ago because I love Steinman's productions, and both Original Sin in Taylor Dayne's version and It's All Coming Back to Me Now in Celine's version are incredible. I need to listen to it asap.

    The Element of Freedom! #justice4putitinalovesong That album was a true return to form after the underwhelming As I Am aka Alicia: "I can do it. I can be a soprano!" God: "Alicia you're an alto" Alicia: "No God."

    Temperamental! That's a great album that I was initially reluctant to check out due to my then-aversion to club beats. Lullaby of Clubland and the downtempos are my favourites. It might lack a highlight like Single on Walking Wounded but I'd say it's more consistent than that album.

    I agree that The Bachelor is Patrick's best album! I haven't put it on in forever, I should change that soon.

    I don't care much for Avril pre- or post-Melissa (although I did use to jam to Complic8ed and Sk8er Boi at the time) but I'm With You remains THAT song. IT'S A DAM! COL!! NITE!!! *azealia megaphone gif*

    To add to my Tango comment, I didn't mean to write off Christine's tracks as fluff! I think she's massively underrated, kind of in the shadow of Lindsey and Stevie, so I'm glad that she gets some recognition for Little Lies and Everywhere which are perfect confections.

    B'Day remains my favourite Beyoncé album, it's just a tour de force with no single weak track in sight. (The standard edition, that is! Or even better, the iTunes standard which has the extended mix of Get Me Bodied attached.) I'm sure I included it in my honourable mentions. Also I absolutely agree with @K94's track picks.

    Talk on Corners is an odd one. Personally, I'd place Unplugged, Borrowed Heaven and Forgiven, Not Forgotten ahead of it. Forgiven, Not Forgotten was the first album I was obsessed with (thanks to my sister). Then I got the Dreams: The Ultimate Collection and while it made me realise how many more Corrs songs I'd already known, I was horrified with the remix of What Can I Do which I'd always known from the radio as a delicate semi-acapella song. I really don't like most of the reissue remixes and the album tracks bore me to death but the original singles run (if you remove the horrific So Young) was pretty amazing so props for that. Oh, and it led to this:

     
    WowWowWowWow, 2014, Island and 10 others like this.
  6. Okay I'm just going to post a couple here shortly, not sure about the rest of the day as Sundays are usually my days to nothing.
     
    londonrain likes this.
  7. #284. Bic Runga - Beautiful Collision

    4 Points - @beyoncésweave


    [​IMG]

    Year: 2002
    Country: New Zealand
    Genre: Pop-Rock/Folk Rock
    Label: Columbia
    Writer/Producer: Bic Runga


    Tracklist

    1. When I See Your Smile
    2. Get Some Sleep
    3. Something Good
    4. Precious Things
    5. The Be All and End All
    6. Election Night
    7. Honest Goodbyes
    8. She Left on a Monday
    9. Beautiful Collision
    10. Listening for the Weather

    11. Counting the Days
    12. Gravity

    Singles Run

    1. Get Some Sleep
    2. Something Good
    3. Listening for the Weather

    Best Chart Position

    #1 (New Zealand) #55 (United Kingdom)

    Sales

    150,000+

    From Our Voters

    @beyoncésweave


    Favourite: Listening For The Weather
    Recommended: Get Some Sleep
    Underrated: Beautiful Collision
     
    ThisIsRogue, Pecans, evilsin and 16 others like this.
  8. @beyoncésweave might have had their PJOPS entry spoiled (if it already wasn't!) if this album had been eliminated before the last round closed!
     
  9. Ooh, you’re gonna make me do this on a Sunday night, huh @DJHazey? Thankfully I’ve been going over some past reminiscences (and also been getting a tad lit). This is cobbled together from several places, so please forgive any narrative dissonance. I also went a bit too long, but this is a rather emotional thing for me. Please indulge.

    Upon release, Bic’s sophomore album was ubiquitous in New Zealand, in its own disarming and quiet manner. The reasons for this success are certainly due to her being well established already (her début Drive is almost universally celebrated here, and was, until a certain Pure Heroine, the young female singer-songwriter début here). But Beautiful Collision’s sustained success may have stemmed from its easy-going and upbeat appeal compared to its predecessor; its sound is the kind which clings best to memories.

    This is captured most efficiently by my first encounter with the album, lead single “Get Some Sleep” which turns a hotline call-in on a road trip into an anthem of sorts. There was something rather charming about a song that talks about a song request (“Tune into the station, make a dedication”) and ends slyly with that dedication turned towards the audience itself (the chorus hums “this is going out to everyone”). A discreetly self-referential piece of songwriting, it’s buoyed by its acoustic arrangement and lovely harmonies, and never seems to be calculated. To my thirteen-year-old self, though, it only briefly registered that it was a song about song. It was just a captivating three-and-a-half minutes of pop.

    After “Get Some Sleep” came the album’s other two singles, “Something Good” and “Listening For The Weather”. In those early years, they were pleasantly inescapable, all three having charted within the Top 20 and becoming radio and music TV staples. Other cuts from the album would come a few years later, found on a friend’s MP3 player while on some school trip; she wouldn’t get it back until we got home. I can’t recall when I first acquired the album in full, but I do remember practically all the songs feeling immediately familiar when I did.

    Adding to this familiarity was the discovery of previously overlooked lyrical turns at every corner, which kept revealing themselves on repeat listening. These were the days before we were surrounded by pervasive, unending commentary and critique of music (and particularly then, this wasn’t even a partial reality for New Zealand music), so you were left to your own devices and insights when grappling with a song or album. The understanding I have of Beautiful Collision then, is highly personal and idiosyncratic, in a way that is unconditioned by anyone or anything else. That’s a rare thing, both personally with most other albums I love, and generally within pop music as a genre.

    Through Beautiful Collision, Bic pulls at both the ordinary and the fantastical, and lets the two bleed into each other in such alluring ways. The domesticity of the former is most vivid: her characters dance around living rooms (“Gravity”); steel themselves for telephone conversations (“Precious Things”); and waste their lives at traffic lights and turnstiles (“Counting The Days”). It contains both the comfort of familiar routine, and the mild dismay of tedium. In both senses, it speaks to everyday life in New Zealand; innocuous and unspectacular. This imagery is never location-specific, but you can’t help but latching onto it, filling it in with your own detail and inhabitating the songs yourself. So the supermarket checkouts in “Listening For The Weather” easily became the Lim Chhour on K Road or the New World Metro on Lambton Quay for me, just as “the ancient stars falling down” in “Election Night” could have been the Milky Way opening up above Masterton or Lake Tekapo (all too gorgeous by the way, from the stars skies the individually arranged fruit and spicy chips). And every so often, that domesticity in transcends the mundane in gorgeous detail. The album’s opening couplet – “when I see you smile, first thing in the morning, it raises curtains on your lazy eyes” – is all warm, sun-drenched contentment.

    The album also a streak of whimsy and passion. “All the elements conspire, with shiny things that catch the eye” in “Precious Things” whilst the title track explains that a “beautiful collision” is “things that go bump in the night” when “with such beautiful precision, fate could create you and I”. In “The Be All And End All”, the narrator urges her lover to make a start on love, with “the sleepwalking moon watching on”. These are escapisms of a sort, the creation myths between two people that we create to distract from the monotony of everyday life and to give narrative to the ordinary stories playing out. But in and of themselves, they contain a simple beauty; love and romance drawn out through the night sky. There’s a simplicity even in the fantasy.

    Perhaps the through line in between the prosaic and the fantastic is the little wisdoms Bic scatters through the album, deft turns of phrase that have an intricate poetry to them while feeling resolutely true. Album highlight “Listening For The Weather”, for instance, is filled with them, from the “tomorrows [that] keep on blowing in from somewhere” to the “people that I know, in the apartments down below, busy with their starring roles in their own tragedies”. In adept strokes, the song sketches out life lived away from a loved one, the motions you go through as you try to guess what the other person is doing (“And I’m sure that as I’m writing, you’ll be somewhere on your way/in a supermarket checkout or a restaurant”); the difficulty of living beyond the past (“those restless thoughts that cling to yesterday”); the quiet resignation to your fate (“I’ve been doing what I’m told. I’ve been busy growing old.”); and the bittersweet pain of even the small moments of contact ("I hate to leave you on your own”). All of which makes that time you can finally be together again so heavy with expectation, for better or worse – for its sweetness, “Listening For The Weather” is also deeply irresolute.

    To back this songwriting up, the album features gorgeously understated production which lulls between jazz and lounge on one hand to folk on the other, whilst retaining a firm footing on pop sensibilities. The album tacks to simple acoustic guitars when it wants to spotlight Bic’s voice and the lyrics, as with the opening “When I See You Smile”. Conversely, it dials things up to deliver punchier cuts of pop and consistently peppers the proceedings with several unexpected choices in instrumentation – the blaring harmonica in “Listening For The Weather”, the plucked strings of the title track and what sounds like a sitar bubbling underneath “Election Night”. These touches help in maintaining each of the songs as distinct, not blurring into each other as sets of songs in this genre (including her contemporaries) can risk doing.

    Finally, there’s Bic’s voice, which often goes unremarked. She is technically proficient, to be sure, but is moreover a singer very much aware of her vocal abilities, knowing exactly where a certain inflection or pause would elevate a song. Most enduringly, she has a gorgeous, warm tone which can be strikingly intimate. It results in the album feeling like a telephone conversation with a close friend, reassuring, familiar and necessary.

    I am not in New Zealand now, and am discovering the odd, unexpected patriotism that comes with departing these shores. Odd, because New Zealanders are never really about performative nationalism in the way that so many other peoples seem to be. What defines life in this country is instead a set of values which lose their power the moment they are articulated: modesty, a lack of pretention, a certain nonchalance and a wide generosity.

    The distance of departure has also allowed me to see how clearly these values run through Beautiful Collision. In the album’s songwriting, production and vocals, there is a distinct lack of self-indulgence. The album is determinedly and simply a collection of songs about love and life from a young woman. But for its introspection, it’s a considerate and generous listen, rewarding repeated listens with stirring images and throwaway insights. There’s this quiet dignity to Bic’s work, about small lives coloured in with tiny details and offhand observations, which feels like New Zealand in a way that most things don’t. For me, Beautiful Collision is very nearly shorthand for New Zealand itself. And I’d rather not have it be any other way for my relationship with this tiny, gorgeous, ridiculous place.
     
  10. #284. Avril Lavigne - Under My Skin

    4 Points - @Mina

    Avril Lavigne // 2nd Album // Let Go (3) - Under My Skin (4)

    [​IMG]


    Year: 2004
    Country: Canada
    Genre: Post-Grunge/Alternative Rock
    Label: Arista/RCA
    Producers: Don Gilmore, Butch Walker, Raine Maida
    Writers: Avril Lavigne, Chantal Kreviazuk


    Tracklist

    1. Take Me Away
    2. Together
    3. Don't Tell Me
    4. He Wasn't
    5. How Does It Feel
    6. My Happy Ending
    7. Nobody's Home
    8. Forgotten
    9. Who Knows
    10. Fall to Pieces
    11. Freak Out
    12. Slipped Away

    (UK iTunes bonus)

    13. I Always Get What I Want

    Singles Run

    1. Don't Tell Me
    2. My Happy Ending
    3. Nobody's Home
    4. He Wasn't

    Best Chart Position

    #1 (Australia, Austria, Canada, Europe, Germany, Ireland, Japan, Mexico, United Kingdom, United States)

    Sales

    10,000,000+

    From Our Voters

    @Mina


    Commentary: Though some of this album has aged quite badly, I still consider this one of my favorites. I miss this Avril; she totally lost me by The Best Damn Thing era.

    My favorite track: “Fall to Pieces”
    Track I’d recommend to a new listener: “Fall to Pieces”
    Most underrated track: “Together”



    Hazey Adds

    I had a feeling that Mina was going to vote for this one before I took in any ballots. I definitely fits her taste more than any other Avril album. It has a 'darker' grungy touch to it, more than any of her other music; it's very moody. I also would say it's her most consistent album, but not my favorite. I'd rank it above Let Go, but where that had a myriad of automatic 10s and a larger group of mediocre songs, this one has fewer of those kind of highs. The only single that is an easy 10 for me is "Nobody's Home", which is kind of an underrated song in her discography. You never hear anyone claim it as one of her all-time best, but it really is. Such amazing storytelling and a paralyzing opening that always stops the world around me and makes me listen. Like Let Go, my favorites are among the non-singles and those would be the two opening tracks.

    Much of this album could be described as taking what we heard on Let Go, refining it, and molding it into something more polished. This is case with "Take Me Away" which sounds like a shinier version of "Losing Grip" or "Unwanted". It really grabs the listener by the face and says "remember me and what I'm all about?". "Together" is the peak for me however and Mina does great by naming it her underrated choice. Again an amazing opening to the song with those piano keys sending chills down my spine and preparing me for the journey. Right after "I'm living a lie..." the song literally cranks into high gear and one of her best choruses comes into view. That's saying something considering her discography full of life-affirming pop choruses. The obvious themes of feeling more comfortable alone rather than in the relationship she sings about are very relatable for people who are socially challenged and find peace in solitude. It's kind of anthem in that regard.

    I'd probably throw out "How Does It Feel" as my underrated gem because it often gets buried as just some random album track but all anyone needs to do is experience that middle eight one time and their mind could be changed in an instant. Avril's angelic voice cooing "would you com-fort meaaayaaayyeaaay, would cry with meaaayaaayyeaaay" has always been one of my favorite moments in her entire collection. If you're a new listener it might take some time for some of the growers that Mina and I have picked to set in for you, so I would point to her more classic sounding numbers including the big singles "Don't Tell Me" and more so "My Happy Ending", which has become one of her signature tracks.

    Let me post @Mina's picks:

    "Fall to Pieces"



    "Together"



    I'll throw in "My Happy Ending" just to have a single and since I think it's a great first-listener track.



     
  11. 2014

    2014 Moderator

    I don't know when it happened but I think Don't Tell Me is my favourite Avril single - that chorus!
     
  12. A&E

    A&E

    [​IMG]


    I love Bic Runga, Birds surely being in my all time top 100, but Beautiful Collision is gorgeous as well and my second favourite album of hers. Listening for the Weather and Precious Things would be my picks. I did lose track of her later releases which I think were NZ-only but her cover album from last year was quite lovely.
     
  13. No, it's what I've always called the likes of Little Lies, Mystified and Everywhere...."Christine fluffballs". Like you, it's not meant entirely seriously or certainly not derogatory. Christine is integral to the Mac magic for me, without her it's just an endless Lindsey/Stevie boxing match.
     
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  14. Under My Skin is brilliant! Nobody's Home is in my Avril trinity along with I Will Be and Keep Holding On. I love how dark Nobody's Home. Addressing those suppressed feelings. Forgotten is also a great track from Under My Skin. Thank you for this album pick @Mina.
     
  15. There's only one album between Birds and the covers album (Belle - lovely as ever, and a dark kind of quiet).

    Trust you to be the only other Bic stan on here. Just... don't stop, honestly.
     
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  16. I actually ended up buying a Bic Runga compilation after the OPS had ended; it was under a fiver with postage, but it's coming from the other side of the globe so could take a while!
     
  17. I totally saw that coming, though I'm glad I finally got a "Hazey Adds" section! (Though I'm expecting more "Hazey Adds" sections for my #1, #2, and maybe my #5 also.)

    I'm not sure whether I should be pleased that @DJHazey knows my taste this well, or retrospectively concerned that this describes like half of my list.
     
  18. I am just glad you voted for this cause if it wasnot for you it would have been missing from the list!
     
  19. Yes...way to rub that in, @Sprockrooster . I'm 99% sure I'm the only voter for my #2, #3, #5, and #6 albums too...so optimistically I might have 2/10 matches?
     
    alanmr and Sprockrooster like this.
  20. Uh, it was meant as a compliment. And if it makes you feel better I am positive I suffer a same faith!
     
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