Best Albums of 2009


21. Jan. 2010, 3:10

#5 – Yeah Yeah YeahsIt’s Blitz!

There’s something about watching fast motion events slowed down or frozen in mid-action that make’s them look unnatural and unfamiliar. It took me several takes to realize the cover of the third album from the Yeah Yeah Yeahs was a fist clenching the remains of a shattered egg – mid shatter. A profound statement about their latest effort or simply a cool looking picture; it seems after listening to It’s Blitz! that it’s a little bit of both. My wild theory is that there are two halves to this album, not unlike an egg with its yolk center surrounded by the albumin. This fist, a strong feminine hand, goes about shattering the protective covering and thus mixing the two rather violently. Whether that’s any where close to the realm of truth is ambiguous, there are certainly two sides to this album. The album opens with one of the better openers I’ve heard with “Zero”. Hearing the energy as lead singer Karen O hits the highs in this song may get you thinking it would be appropriate to have her be renamed to Karen O-face as her crescendos sound very orgasmic. It fits the incredibly uplifting and dance like quality of the track and leads right to “Heads Will Roll”, another powerful, head banging tune that flits an angry flair around as the chorus commands you to ‘dance till your dead’. Things begin to subside with “Soft Shock”, a song similar to perhaps their best known song “Maps” and unfortunately things never quite get back to the pace those first two songs set. Taken by themselves though, the rest of the songs offer a very pleasurable listening experience. “Shame and Fortune” sets a very snarky tone between its staccato bass line and sparks of distorted guitar. “Dragon Queen” brings back the synth and sexy portions of “Zero” with a mellower feel while the lyrics are muddled by Karen O’s delivery sounding more like high pitched moans than sensible words. “Runaway” represents the other half in this split personality of an album featuring soft lullaby-like piano, somber string bass and sorrowful vocals. The ethereal qualities of “Skeletons” imitate that of an Irish folk song. Replace the synthesized parts with a pan flute and you get awfully close. It’s an ok track but I’ll take “Hysteric” over it any day. I’ll love this track until the day it’s ruined by over-exploitation in every romantic-comedy churned out by Hollywood. Until then it’s a very dreamy and pretty piece of music with its simplified drum beat. “Little Shadow” winds down the album, a very melancholy tune. I wish more artists would end their works with tracks as powerful as their openers but I’ll live with it. Split this album up into your “Party Friday” and “Rainy Monday” playlists. It’s a guaranteed treat for whichever mood you’re in.

- Highlights -
Heads Will Roll
Shame and Fortune

- Lowlights -


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