I am a big user and buyer of music. I buy and listen to everything, with an attitude that at times I seem like addict trying to feel like if it was the first time: I remember like it was yesterday the first album I’ve ever bought! I do anything to feel that emotion again, sometimes I find things that I like, sometimes (many more times!) I like less..
Unfortunately we are aware that all modern albums are made to get A single that works on the radio and with that drag the rest to fame. In all effects given the modern age of internet and downloads I fear it doesn’t make much sense to produce a whole album anymore.
Once upon a time albums where produced with a certain number of tracks because they had to physically fit on a specific medium (the LP) and because there was the culture and the intelligence to create a concept album, which is a project that had a coherence and in the end had a clearly defined project
Concept albums are less to come by, but when it happens that I come across and appreciate one its always enjoy it!
Tow recent works have left a strong impression on me.
I will talk little about the first one, also because I presume everyone is aware of it: “marinai, profeti e balene” by Vinicio Capossela. Its a masterpiece. Full stop.
The other one I would like to talk about more in details is a recent discovery. It’s titled “Rome” by Danger Mouse & Daniele Luppi.
Danger Mouse is an american musician and producer, great fan of seventies italian spaghetti western music since he was a child and, just to mention it, will be producing U2’s forthcoming album. Daniele Luppi is an italian musician that lives in America and has, for example, made the soundtrack of the movie “Nine”, a free interpretation of Fellini’s “otto e mezzo”.
With an approach almost archeologically musical (which reminded me of the one by Ry Cooder) the pair went to Rome, they searched and found in the storage rooms the musical instruments of the period, they then convened the musicians of the spaghetti western in the seventies and they recorded (in the same studios where they recorded thirty and more years ago!) an album which wants to be a beautiful homage to those sounds and atmospheres.
They have basically written a soundtrack to a movie that does not exist.
The whole thing is made modern and contemporary by the vocal participation of two great singers, Jack White (incredible musician, founder of The White Stripes, unfortunately best known for the pa papapa pa footballing chant, and other thousand groups, like the incredible The Raconteurs) and Norah Jones, well refined singer that to simplify thing we’ll define as jazz.
Amongst this decay full of references and talent an extraordinary album came out of it, which has everything inside (Pink Floyd, Ennio Morricone, Piero Umiliani, Air, Massive Attack, Calexico, Morcheeba, Portishead, Eagles, Zero 7, Serge Gainsbourg…) but all this is made modern and contemporary.
After all this chit chat you might want to listen to it, don’t you?
Here is a video where the two authors talk about it:
And my two favourite tracks. Here is the one sang by Norah Jones:
And the one sang by Jack White:
Here, this is all.
I would end it like this…