Last week we skipped this column, so this week we’re throwing this week’s releases and last week’s together. The main releases last week were the new Of Monsters and Men album, Beneath The Skin, which was fine, I guess, whatever, if you like that sort of dull pseudo-indie that drags on and on, and the reissue of the Rolling Stones’ Sticky Fingers, an album so terrific I’m not even going to complain about the multiple deluxe versions they’re capitalizing on. This week, the new Hilary Duff album is taking over my heart.
Of Monsters and Men – Beneath The Skin
“Crystals,” the lead single from this album, sucks. It sounds like they’re singing about Crystal Light. “Hunger” is just way too long. I mean, I don’t hate this band, I’m just tired of them– their first album was fairly decent, but I feel like they burned out. I really wanted to like “Crystals,” but I didn’t, and that kind of set the tone for the rest of the album. Honestly, not great, but that being said, I didn’t expect much for their sophomore effort. Though it exceeded my expectations, I didn’t really set the bar that high for that to really be considered an achievement. I tend to rate albums based on whether or not I would actually spend money on them, and if so, how much. Beneath The Skin? Nah. Beyond “Little Talks,” OMAM hasn’t impressed me much.
Phoebe Ryan – Mine
This new EP is kind of nice. Nothing really stands out about it– the song “Dead” interesting, but the ethereal, fake dream-pop thing is sort of done. Similar to Halsey but not as good, Mine is just another record. I do like this girl’s voice a lot– it’s so breathy, so dreamy, I wish she was doing something else with it than every song I’ve ever heard before. I wish I had something nice to say about it. It nice– but that’s it. It’s okay– not unique, special, or different. Lately it takes a lot for music to impress me and this just didn’t do the job.
Hilary Duff – Breathe In, Breathe Out
Wow. Wow. Wow. That’s all I can say. Hilary Duff never had to make a “comeback,” but if she did, this would be successful. I missed hearing her on the radio and I missed rocking out to her old jams. This album is smart, sexy, and mature. I’m already a huge fan, and I was so worried this album would be terrible– as most albums after long hiatuses are. But no– “Tattoo” and “Lies” are wonderful songs, kicking ass from here to Kingdom Come.
Walk Off The Earth – Sing It All Away
Honestly, this band should have stuck to making covers. Honestly, whatever. Honestly, this is not for me. Honestly.