Kevin Hodgkiss PoOPlist 2006


  Buy new or used through Amazon
1. MODERN TIMES - Bob Dylan
An older gent with young ideas.

  Buy new or used through Amazon
2. ONCE AGAIN - John Legend
A young man with old ideas. With a voice that haunts Jeff Buckley and a soul that pulls from Marvin Gaye, someday we may agree that he was correctly named. Gorgeous. Sam Cooke, are you listening?

3. AMERICAN EDIT - Dean Gray
It's like having a girl, and then having her sister too (metaphorically, of course…). Great mash of a great album.

  Buy new or used through Amazon
4. BEGIN TO HOPE - Regina Spektor
Just a fun record. Poppy and unique.

  Buy new or used through Amazon
5. BLACK CADILLAC - Rosanne Cash
Hardly the most talented girl on the block, but Rosanne knows how to use what she's got with clarity and spirit. A beautiful and hopeful response to her losses. "God is in the roses and in the thorns." One of her best in a long line of classy recordings.

  Buy new or used through Amazon
6. TAKING THE LONG WAY - The Dixie Chicks
I keep thinking I like this more for its political response than as a good record. (I bought three when it came out just to support them.) But then I play it again and know that it's a good record. Very good record. And I hope they are never ready to make nice.

  Buy new or used through Amazon
7. UNDER THE COVERS, Vol 1 - Matthew Sweet and Susanna Hoffs
The best part of this, and there's a lot I like, is the idea of more volumes to come. If you're like me, you already have a laundry list to send to them ("Time Will Show the Wiser" anyone?) Great songs, great arrangements. The love for these songs shines through. I am always amazed at how well they did "Alone Again Or". And they heard what I always heard in "She May Call You Up Tonight". Call me Susanna.

  Buy new or used through Amazon
8. THE GREATEST - Cat Power
3 things I recently learned about Chan Marshall have affected my feelings about this CD. 1. That Chan is an accomplished musician (a negative). 2. That Chan is nuttier than a squirrel's nest (a neutral). 3. That Chan is drop dead gorgeous (you have to ask?). I already knew that she has this beautiful, sultry voice and sings to herself from her bed. The good part is that she allows me to listen. Pretty cool. And I like those old soul musicians she let in. Tres cool.

  Buy new or used through Amazon

Another gorgeous voice who surrounds herself with classy understated arrangements that make it all seem so simple, which often belie the lyrics. Brushes on the snare and capo up the neck. Beautifully haunting. And that voice. That voice.

  Buy new or used through Amazon
10. RABBIT FURCOAT - Jenny Lewis and the Watson Twins
(What's with all these girl singers???) Another good set, not unlike Neko's, in it's borrowing of country/folk music. So much more American than that crap that they call country these days. And I guess I shouldn't expect to hear "Rabbit Fur Coat" on the country stations, eh?

It's like turning on the radio and it's 1972 again. Elton John and Bernie Taupin reprise that time without sounding like they needed to. Honky tonk, funk, gospelly ballads and one classic song, "Blues Never Fade Away". Hey, I'm 18 again.
Another interesting collection that takes from all his other sets. Funk, blues, rock, infusion, industrial ... all in that unmistakable Beck style. And one song that sounds like it was an outtake from a '60s Kinks record!
13. REPRIEVE - Ani DiFranco
What's another year without an Ani? Certainly one would expect with the current state of this country that Ani's angry self might reemerge. Instead she gives us this quiet fire that burns slow, rather than blisters, with "just enough pathos to keep me hypnotized…"
14. BROKEN BOY SOLDIER - The Raconteurs
Almost like a "supergroup". Some talented people make cool music together that doesn't sound like talented people trying to make cool music. I'm not missing White Stripes yet.
15. LIVING WITH WAR - Neil Young
Perhaps a cheap shot, this one seems more like slogans put to music than enlightenment. Especially since Neil was an early supporter of the war. I'll take Steve Earle's indictment or Conor Oberst's unapologetic stance to raise my fist to. It's still fun to sing along with in the car though.
16. YUSUF - An Other Cup
Cats out of the bag. Still the sweet guy he was, despite any possible connections to you-know-what.
17. PEARL JAM - Pearl Jam
You could tell that these guys worked hard on this one. Still it comes up a little short when stacked against Vs. or Ten. But "medals on a wooden mantle next to a handsome face, that the president took for granted writing checks that others pay…." is classic Jam. A respectable, tough set.
Talented musician with a broken heart. A great combination. Half written sauced. Half written sober. Put it on random play and see if you can guess which side of the playlist each song is on.
19. STADIUM ARCADIUM - Red Hot Chili Peppers
Pepperful two CD set. I don't think I've ever actually gotten to the end…..Some great riffs and variety but a stupid title and even worst cover. John Frusciante is the fire behind their longevity.
20. DUSK & SUMMER - Dashboard Confessional
After hearing a few unreleased acoustic tracks, I had great anticipation that this CD would get this guy some of the cred that I thought he deserved, breakin' out of that emo thing. Great voice. Good melodies. Good guitar. Emotional and earnest. What happened? Blah blah blah. Over cooked. Someone needs to really break his heart. Or beat his emo ass up. Or send him for a Baghdad visit. Cause I'm not believing he's still not getting laid. C'mon Chris, I know you've got it in you. Make the damn record already! I'm counting on you. Hands down.

Kevin Patrick Hodgkiss
New Pulse, NY