By CHRIS LUCIANIN
Hello fellow Trax Packers, like many of you reading and/or contributing to Off The Trax, we are familiar with our Off The Trax podcast hosts, Ted, J-Con and Maria. However, many of you may not know me — and I am very sorry to hear that, because I am awesome. As a self-proclaimed music enthusiast and expert (aren’t all music fans self-proclaimed?), I will be bringing you weekly articles on a variety of different music topics, including a weekly album you should check out, a weekly single worth jamming to, and a track that makes me want to punt babies off of the George Washington Bridge. It will all be titled #SoundTrax.
So jumping right into it, I would like to discuss something that happened about a month ago. A fairly big name band, by the name of U2 — who some of you might know — decided they were going to do the world a favor in partnering up with iTunes for the debut release of their new album, Songs of Innocence. To the surprise of many, myself included, we woke up with a brand new, free album on our phones. That’s right, FREE MUSIC!
It’s been a couple years since anyone could really say that. I, myself, am not the biggest U2 fan in the world, but I really like their album Joshua Tree so I would decide to give the album a listen. However, the majority of you freaked out like your nudie iPhone photos have been hacked. You got free music, enjoy it.
It breaks down fairly simple: U2 is a band that has been pumping out hits since the 1980s, ranging from Pump-You-Up-Ballads like “Bullet the Blue Sky,” to their cheeky romance shit, “With our Without You.” Hate them or love them, they have something for you.
However, they haven’t had any truly magical albums since Joshua Tree, and they are a band that truly believes that every album they make is the best one since, well, J-Tree.
So upon listening to their their new album, song by song, I was unimpressed. They have a couple of solid “car” songs (songs you can listen to while you’re driving or to waste some time) such as “The Miracle” and “Raised by Wolves,” and the best piece of music on the album is without a doubt “Volcano.” The Edge nails his riffs, with the bass and drum beats backing him as usual. They really care, and they really think that this song is it, the next masterpiece. (If you want to check it out, here it is…)
But that’s as simple as it gets — and that’s why they are willing to give away millions of these albums, and millions in sales for free. So that people will listen and not give up on era of music that has been replaced with rock bands like Halestorm and Sixx AM.
Unfortunately, we all got the answer when so many people were appalled with the free album that Apple had to issue an app to get rid of it. Get rid of a free album, by one of the greatest bands (arguably) of our generation.
And that Trax Packers, is the day the music died.
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MUST LISTEN ALBUM:
Worlds on Fire – Slash (Myles Kennedy and The Conspirators)
This album is truly amazing. Slash is at his absolute best with his riffs, finding cords he hasn’t found since Appetite for Destruction. Miles Kennedy is the perfect vocal fit for him as well. He finally found his front man after striking out with Axel Rose and Scott Weiland.
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MUST LISTEN SINGLE:
Dreaming — Smallpools
Smallpools is am up-and-coming Electro Alt band that relies on heavy guitars and keyboards — and they absolutley nail their genre with this catchy song. This is must listen to anyone who listens to NPR or is a hipster. Off of their EP, SMALLPOOLS.
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SONG THAT MAKES ME WANT TO PUNT BABIES:
Anything by Lorde. Jesus Christ.