At some point last year, I stopped writing about the shows I was going to. I’ve still been taking notes on my phone — quick bullet point observations of songs and performers — but I haven’t been committing them to blog paper lately. Last night’s Natalie Prass show was one hell of a wake-up call, however, and I can’t resist sharing this time around. Here are my notes as they would have looked if I’d been able to pull a Zack Morris and pause the show to wax rhapsodic about what I was seeing. (As a side note, I once told my parents during an episode of Saved By the Bell that I wanted to change my name to Zack. They didn’t oblige, which seems like the right call in retrospect.)
Damn. It’s December? Who let that happen?
It’s hard to believe, but year-end lists are starting to appear. I just saw Rolling Stone’s, which placed the U2 album at #1. OK then. My top-10 is in the works… sort of. I’ve been keeping a list of every new album I’ve listened to in full — first time I’ve done that — and I’ve made a spot in my living room for the albums released in 2014 that I bought on vinyl so I can give them a few extra listens. I’m certain this means they’ll get preferential rankings, but whatever.
While I’m in the process of making lists and checking them twice, I thought it would be fun to preview a few of the albums I’m looking forward to in 2015. You know what? “Looking forward to” is putting it mildly. I’m like a cat staring at a printer, impatiently waiting to grab what comes out. Here’s why:
In certain areas of life, you’re better off not seeing how the sausage is made. Unfortunately, pop music can be one of those areas. It’s not on the same level as legislation, or ya know, actual sausage, but what you find when you pull back the curtain and learn about how your favorite top-40 songs were made can be stomach-turning nonetheless. The corrective recording technology. The lists of songwriters that would reach the floor if published in scroll format. The contradictions between artists’ public personas and personal lives. It can get ugly. I’m not proud to admit it, but there are times I’d rather not know who was singing that radio hit I’ve grown attached to for fear it’ll turn out to be a star whose fame has crossed over into infamy. It’s judgy, I know, but who is doing the singing and how something is created matters. It just does.