(Not Just Another) Drop in the Ocean: The Michelle Branch Rate (FIN) | Page 12 | The Popjustice Forum

(Not Just Another) Drop in the Ocean: The Michelle Branch Rate (FIN)

Discussion in 'Charts, rates etc' started by Seventeen Days, Apr 29, 2019.


What is your favorite Michelle Branch album?

  1. Broken Bracelet

    0 vote(s)
  2. The Spirit Room

    8 vote(s)
  3. Hotel Paper

    11 vote(s)
  4. Hopeless Romantic

    5 vote(s)
  5. West Coast Time

    0 vote(s)
  6. Stand Still, Look Pretty

    2 vote(s)
  7. Everything Comes and Goes

    1 vote(s)
  1. Top 75 and I've lost 30% of my sevens to 20% of my fours... Everything comes and goes indeed.
    berserkboi likes this.
  2. So far I haven't lost anything too crushing in this rate, but I know its coming! I lost some covers I really liked and gave high scores to, but I knew most of her covers would likely be gone quickly. We'll see if I feel so positive about how this rate is progressing once we get to the top 50.
  3. I'm ok with those songs leaving now
    Seventeen Days and berserkboi like this.
  4. Paper Pieces DID NOT deserve this early exit *bops to it*
    Music Is Life and Seventeen Days like this.
  5. Yay impromptu break! Work was crazy busy last week, due to a big event, so it was nigh impossible to get a free moment. But I'm hoping to get this rate wrapped up by mid-October, so let's jump in. Tonight's eliminations come from a couple of albums that have already taken a beating, starting with #75....

    Not Gonna Follow You Home

    Average: 6.57

    High Score: 9.25 (@Music Is Life)
    Low Score: 3.9 (@saviodxl)

    My Score: 7.5

    Yes, we’re saying goodbye to our second song in a row from the ‘Everything Comes and Goes’ era. This time, we bid goodbye to what I would say was one of my favorite tracks from this era. This track is country pop deliciousness, and I really dig Michelle’s vocals on this one - they kind of have a bit of a smoky quality in spots that work really well for me. I hope that she pulls a Taylor Swift and tries to get ahold of her masters someday (or at least re-records them), so she can try to do some kind of proper release of all of the tracks that were sent to the cutting room floor from this timeframe.

    Your Thoughts

    This track may have the least amount of commentary I’ve seen yet for a song…

    @abael (6) - The song is well written and produced, but for some reason I’m not connecting with it, maybe the delivery by Michelle is a bit lacking.

    @LKane (7) - The guitars in the intro are the best part of this song.

    @rtotheh (8) - One of the best choruses Michelle’s ever done, surely? Definitely one of her biggest, chunkiest, and most enjoyable country bangers.



  6. ….y’all are monsters. But at least my favorite track from this album was the last one standing.

    Washing Machine

    Average: 6.67

    High Scores: 10 (@imaduck)
    Low Score: 3.9 (@soratami)

    My Score: 8.5

    It probably looked pretty obvious when ‘Paper Pieces’ was unceremoniously booted out. But yes, our first album falls early on. In case you’re just tuning in, here’s a recap on the story of the ‘Broken Bracelet’ album:
    ‘Washing Machine’ was the first track from this album to really grab me and make me love it, and it remains my favorite track on the album to this day. Where other tracks on the album tend to suffer a bit due to the lo-fi indie quality, this track actually benefits from it. This is probably the one track on the entire album that I wouldn’t want to see get the Shanks studio polish on ‘Spirit Room’ - it was perfect as-is.

    Also, here's a not-so-fun fact to close out this album's tenure: the master tapes for 'Broken Bracelet' were destroyed in the Nashville floods of 2010. So if you had any hopes of a remastered version of this album... well let's be honest, probably no one here had that hope. (except me. *sob*)

    Your Thoughts

    @saviodxl (4.1) - Sounds like a demo.

    @rtotheh (4.5) - Very Alanis Morissette demo circa 1997. On balance the slightly less tedious song about washing machines in my 2000s iTunes (holla Mrs. Bartolozzi).

    @abael (5) - A bit generic.

    @Remorque (5.5) - The melody is okay and Michelle gives us a good performance, but bloody hell at that non-production though... That guitar really overpowers everything on this song and it's way too loud.

    @LKane (5.8) - This song has some potential with bigger arrangements, but as an acoustic version there’s something missing I guess.

    @bonnieetclyde (6) - Nice vocals and some good melodies. Overall a little forgettable.

    Looks like a few of you would have liked to hear this one Shanks-ified….

    @Shockbox (6) - I feel like this song had a lot of potential had it been given the 'The Spirit Room' glow-up like other tracks had.

    @The Hot Rock (8) – If re-recorded, I would've loved to see this on The Spirit Room. This is on par with some of the tracks on there.

    @pop3blow2 (8.3) - Love her harmony vocals so much on this album.

    @Music Is Life (8.5) – I really like the guitar work on this. The tambourine is cute too.

    @imaduck (10) - I would kill for a Spirit Room-era version of this song, it has all the ingredients of what makes Michelle so incredible.

  7. Last edited: Dec 2, 2019
  8. Dang! I guess this was a bit predictable. Paper Pieces is my favourite
    berserkboi and Seventeen Days like this.
  9. Waaay too harsh on Broken Bracelet, Washing Machine should've been in the Top 40.
  10. Not surprised. Not upset about it though.
    berserkboi likes this.
  11. Been almost two weeks, is everything okay?
    LKane and Music Is Life like this.
  12. Sorry guys, things have been... well let's not make excuses.

    I'm way overdue, so today we're gonna do a whopping 4 elims to jump back in. I promise, I'll keep the momentum going!
    GimmeWork and Music Is Life like this.
  13. Well, these impromptu breaks just keep coming. But I swear, I am determined and ready to get this show on the road. Let's kick off today with #73, and this time it's farewell to another song from 'West Coast Time'....

    Sunset Cigarette

    Average: 6.69

    High Score: 9.5 (@Music Is Life)
    Low Score: 4 (@imaduck)

    My Score: 8.5

    Having not been familiar with the bulk of 'West Coast Time' before this rate, a lot of the songs were discoveries. The majority of it was at least decent and felt like it had growing power, but a couple of tracks hooked me instantly. This was one of those tracks. It has a slight electro edge to it, particularly in the drums, which sound like either a drum machine or at least a programmed loop (though the production does a good job of making it hard to tell). Additionally, Michelle's soaring vocals on the chorus really give this track a feel of the glory days of the early '00s. All in all, a knock out of the park for me.

    Your Thoughts
    @rtotheh (5) - Granted it’s only a demo, but it feels a million times stronger than some of its WCT equivalents for lack of unnecessary production bells and whistles. I really like Michelle’s vocals on this one.

    I assume the lower score was because it's just a demo? You had more praise at 5 than some people at higher scores...

    @abael (6) - It’s alright, chorus is pretty poor.

    @pop3blow2 (7.7) - Sorta crunchy & fuzzy production. I like it. The actual song… is fine.

    @Sprockrooster (8) - That title alone has me interested.

    @LKane (8) - I think Michelle said in a tweet that this song was only a demo for someone else. But actually sounds good! Better than some stuff that was supposed to be on West Coast Time.

    If this was a demo and not a finished product, then I'd sure as hell like to hear what a finished version sounds like.

  14. Post #2 coming in the next hour. How dare they expect me to actually work when I'm at work.

    EDIT: scratch that, a huge project just got me caught up for the last 4 hours. Posts #2-4 coming sometime this evening!
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2019
    DJHazey, GimmeWork, abael and 2 others like this.
  15. And we’re back, after yet another crazy work day! (At least I’m not just getting home right now.) Let’s get right back to it, with #72.

    …by saying farewell to a different kind of summer.


    Average: 6.72

    High Score: 9.5 (@Music Is Life)
    Low Score: 3 x 2 (@Shockbox, @The Hot Rock)

    My Score: 7.25

    I’m actually quite amused at the coincidence of this song being eliminated at a time like now, but that’s because I’m easily amused. Anyway, back to the topic at hand. Michelle decides to take a hard left back into a more old-school country sound with ‘Summertime’, mixing the guitars with some reverb-laden steel guitar and lyrical imagery of a warm summer’s day in the South. This track really toes the border between nostalgia and cheese, which is why I didn’t give it a higher score. It’s definitely a pretty track, though.

    Your Thoughts

    @bonnieetclyde (6.5) - Snooze-fest. Nothing leaves a lasting impression here.

    @abael (7) - Pretty song in all aspects but lacks impact.

    @LKane (8) - This is a good song to listen to on the freeway while running away from chaos, and just looking for some time for ourselves. Chill on the freeway.

    I could definitely see this being a “windows open on the freeway” kind of track.

    @rtotheh (8) - A mainstay on my summer playlists. There’s something very dusty, 70s, Dire Straits-only-good about it.

    @pop3blow2 (8) - Nice little tune. A ‘Dixie-Chicksy’ sorta ballad.

    It does feel like it could fit comfortably on the ‘Fly’ album, actually.

    @Sprockrooster (9) - This has such a campfire feel to it in the good way.

    @Music Is Life (9.5) – Okay, this is great and sad, and it made me kinda wanna cry. I love her voice on this and the melody is great, but it's honestly the country sounding production that sold this for me.

  16. Dang... I guess all the following tracks are mostly songs that I like. Summertime is a cute song. And since we are talking about country.. I'll leave you with a recent leaked song from "different kind of country"... Enjoy "Lucky Enough":

  17. Can you guess what it’s time for?

    Yep, it’s time…. For #71.

    …oh, and our second elimination of the night from ‘Everything Comes and Goes’.

    Ready to Let You Go

    Average: 6.77

    High Score: 10 x 2(@Music Is Life, @Sprockrooster)
    Low Score: 3 (@The Hot Rock)

    My Score: 6.5

    On the flip side of ‘Summertime’, we return to a more modern country sound with this one. I gave this a 6.5 as there are some decent vocals going on, and some decent guitar work. But otherwise, it’s a bit middling. I’m not mad at it going this early in the rate.

    Your Thoughts

    @Shockbox (4) - I was raging when she continued with this country mess. No Michelle no.

    @rtotheh (4.5) - One of the weaker, country-by-number moments on ECAG... so obviously it’d end up as track 1 on the EP edition. Sigh.

    I think I heard that the record label suggested this song be the first track. Which just proves that record label execs don’t know what the public wants.

    @LKane (6.8) - I guess this is a good song, but maybe it is too much country for me. But it is better than ‘My, Oh My’, tho.

    dddd, I hope the ‘Stand Still, Look Pretty’ stans don’t come for you, sis.

    @abael (7) - Michelle sounds good, don't love production choices.

    @pop3blow2 (7.1) - Pretty average, but fine.

    @bonnieetclyde (7.5) - This is more like the style The Wreckers should have aimed for. There's a lot to like here and the chorus is really catchy.

    @Sprockrooster (10) - Sassy, brassy and a bit of spice. Delicious.

    @Music Is Life (10) – A great opener. She honestly does country really well. This is great. I love the melody, and the production, and they lyrics are great and relatable.

    Last edited: Sep 26, 2019
  18. Right then, let’s move onto #70. Sorry to all of you Country Michelle fans, but this isn’t your lucky night….

    …at least this album has come through relatively unscathed, so far.


    Average: 6.79

    High Scores: 9.5(@Music Is Life), 8.5 (@LKane)
    Low Score: 4.2 (@saviodxl)

    My Score: 7.5

    As we unceremoniously close out the 70s, we leave behind our third track from ‘Stand Still, Look Pretty’. And y’all, I just have to say that there are songs out there that should have gone before this. Michelle turns in a great vocal, and I love that super interesting processed synth/guitar(?) intro. Also, is it just me, or does this song have a very Sheryl Crow feel to it? I think it’s the subtle organ in the background - it’s giving me shades of ‘My Favorite Mistake’, which thusly borrowed the organ elements from the Stevie Nicks/Tom Petty classic ‘Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around’. It’s like a game of Musical Six Degrees! Invite your friends, hours of fun!

    Your Thoughts

    @Shockbox (6) - I really like the production and melody in the verses but the chorus is pretty weak.

    @rtotheh (7) - Michelle looooves her metereological metaphors. I always pointed reluctant solo fans to this as an unthreatening first bite of the Wreckers, but it’s definitely MB on autopilot, with an obligatory pinch of yeehaw.

    This definitely feels more like solo Michelle. Makes me wonder if she was really taking he wheel for this one, rather than being a collaborative effort.

    @pop3blow2 (8) - So, I don’t really like the idea of music genres, but there are several times on this record where I did find myself asking, “Is this really country? This was acceptable to the fans of that genre in 2005... and ‘on brand’ for the genre”. I know that’s a loaded question, because this album came out 13 years ago & compared to what passes for country now, it probably certainly is. Like ‘Rain’ for instance, there’s a bit of banjo at the end, but it sounds like a rock song to me. None of this matters to me, and the song is fine, it’s just funny to me how desperate pop culture is to hang onto to ideals of their genre. Throw a steel guitar or banjo in a pop song…. oooh, now it’s county!

    I can always count on @pop3blow2 to pinpoint in on my more vague thoughts of a track.

    @abael (8) - RAAAEAAAIIIIN! This album either caught me on a good day, or it is a big step up.

    Michelle, ha impact!

    @imaduck (8) - A little out of place on this album, but definitely the blueprint for every subsequent album.

    @LKane (8.5) - This is more classic Michelle. Country but a little bit rock and fun actually.

    @Music Is Life (9.5) – I really like the production for this one. And her vocals. A serious highlight here.

  19. Country Michelle deserves better!
    Seventeen Days and Music Is Life like this.
  20. The better part of Everything Comes and Goes emerges, well done. We still need to trim down Stand Still, Look Pretty though.
    Seventeen Days likes this.
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