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[02.21.2011 by Bridget Doyle]


 » The Top 30 Albums of 2010 - Fashionably, fabulously late, our favorite music (and believe me, there was a LOT) of 2010, the year that some have called the best year for music ever. And only some of those fools work here. Plenty of usual suspects, lots of ties and a few surprises that I won't spoil, including our unexpected #1.
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 » Live: Surfer Blood/The Drums at Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL - Remember when Weezer used to put together records that you could sing along to and rock out to? That's what Surfer Blood's show was like!
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Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
»Screaming Females
Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
»Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
Halcyon Digest
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Fat Possum
Cordelia's Dad
What It Is
Kimchee Records

Rating: NR/10 ?

October 1, 2004
I was talking to an old friend on the phone the other day. He is spending his summer back home, working part time at the movie theater where I, and many of my friends from high school, worked quite a few years ago. After we spent a little time catching up, the topic of what was going on there at work eventually came up, and he began to tell me about a little incident that occurred a week or two back on the opening night of the newest Matt Damon flick, The Bourne Identity. It would seem that the film upset or just pissed off this one young punk rocker patron to the point where he felt it was absolutely necessary to go to the bathroom to defecate in the Gatorade bottle that he had snuck in. Being sure to get a nice consistency, he mixed it with some urine and a little water, whereupon the fine upstanding youth returned to the theater and began to shake the contents of the bottle all over the first few rows of seats near where he had been seated. Needless to say, the intensely vile, near vomit-inducing, and wretched shit fumes ran all the other moviegoers out of the theater, demanding that their tickets be refunded. It would take three days of cleaning and airing out the house before it smelled pleasant enough to sit through a film in there again. Sadly, it was three days with no showings of The Bourne Identity to thrill the movie-going audiences.

If I could imagine the essence of the smell in that theater after about a good days worth of shit soaking into the cloth seats, the carpet, and collecting in pools on the concrete floor, captured onto a CD, then the album produced would be Cordelia's Dad's What It Is. No, unfortunately it's not a Strokes remix album; no that would have been far more pleasant. What we have here is a case of a band with a multiple personality disorder, who has refused to see a psychiatrist over the course of its ten plus years together and seven albums. See they claim to be inspired by American roots music, and you can see some of that influence in there, but what I'm wondering is where did the folk-traditional-pysche-pop-punk-gospel-modern rock influence come from, and why in the hell did it all have to get mixed in.

Either way it all adds up to a not so smoothly blended, thick and creamy, shit margarita. The main singer's voice sounds like the guy from the Crash Test Dummies, only with his nuts in a vice, clamped down to the point where they are turning purple and are about to pop off. Now, if you are an industrious music fan, you can use this album as an opportunity to play a trick on all your friends by telling them that they should by this CD because its art, its really intended to be this bad. Just try to convince your friends that they were making a statement. To prove the point you can play them the song "Inhaler", it's the song with the most God forsaken trombone sound ever committed to magnetic tape on it. If that still won't sell them on it, then you can point out that Cordelia's Dad has some serious indie-cred, because Steve Albini recorded half this album's tracks way back in 1997 at his studio in Chicago. That should have them dropping $14.99 real quick like, while you laugh your ass off at their small-minded, hipster mentality all the way home.

Maybe What It Is was given to the world to teach us lesson. What lesson would that be, you ask? Well let's see. How about just because Steve Albini recorded your album doesn't mean that it's good? But most importantly I think the lesson we should learn from this is to never, ever, under any circumstances, sit near a punk kid in a movie theater, unless of course, you want to go home smelling like canned shit.

Reviewed by Mark Skipper
Mark Skipper currently resides in Nashville, TN where he can be found skipping shows, drinking Guinness, making bad home recordings, and complaining about how much music sucks these days.

See other reviews by Mark Skipper



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