Monday, June 18, 2012

A review of "Blackberry Jams"

First things first: Kaitlyn, way to go for starting us off with an excellently themed selection of songs.
You clearly have not let your music biting teeth grow dull during this seven year hiatus.

Now, enough jerking off...let's do this...

Love them or hate them, Journey is catchy as fuck and will always start off any sort of mix tape spectacularly; they even managed to make Usher tolerable.
Nailed it.

"Jumanji" is fun as hell. I always appreciate a talented female rapper and rap with interesting instrumentation and this track has both.

"Summerscent", with its drums, guitar and those Nothing wrong with on the nose, Kaitlyn. It's like the Red Hot Chili Peppers wrote the background for these guys to rap over. Great stuff.

Kaitlyn, I'm apologizing now because I plan on biting this song for every party I have from this point on. Take comfort in the fact that it was you who delivered this jam unto me...but also know that I'm going to deny even knowing you if someone asks me about it. Just a heads up, boo.

You lost me a bit with "High For This" (I think it has something to do with being on drugs for sex, which, sorry, tends to make me think the sex isn't going to be that good...because you need to be high to enjoy it), got me right back on track with "Jungle". While not as energetic as the first part of the album, it still has a very good energy to it.

"Golden Train" is a really good remix. I would pump this in a club, if I owned one.

"Closer Than This" was a tad more retro than I enjoy, but that's just me. Good addition, even I didn't love it.

Okay, I have never, ever liked any R&B ever. So I'm just going to not say anything. I am glad to hear you and Frank are dating though. Congrats.

One of my problems with rap is the endless boring litany of the things rappers have/want/covet/would kill someone else for, but the focus of this track, the laser like focus...on brilliant. I'd like to think that A-Trak might be taking a shot at these more typical rappers who would love to take a moment of your time to tell you how many Bentleys they own and in which colors...but I don't know his music well enough. I'll give him the benefit of the doubt though, as this was a really fun song with a cool arrangement behind his lyrics.

"Treading Water" has a wonderfully summery feel and some pretty funny lyrics. Excellent addition.

"Wedding Crasher" - More R&B...enjoy.

There's something a bit creepy about "Je Pense A Toi" that makes it feel less summertime and more...I don't know...dying in the summertime...maybe it has something to do with the image of these two blind people singing it. Thanks for that Kaitlyn.

I didn't hate "It Fees Good To Be Around You", but I certainly didn't love it. This is going to sound weird, but I notice these things: the samples used in the song bugged me. They threw me out of the groove they were going for and that is unfortunate. Not awful, but I'd like to hear a version without the samples.

Surprise, surprise, not a fan of Reggae BUT with all that annoying plonky dub shit removed from this version, I actually found myself enjoying the unforced ebullience of Marley's voice. He really had something. I think of the saw-toothed synths make this track a little darker than it should be, based on its subject matter, but, hey, that may have been what they were going for. Interesting track, nice choice.

While a perfectly acceptable ending to a really solid album, "Next To Me" was a bit overly sappy for my angry, cynical music tastes. I'm sure people less hateful than I will completely enjoy this.

The first four songs on this album are rock solid, the perfect placement of the perfect summer songs and there is a hearty handful of other great tracks on here as well. I understand that people like R&B and that people listen to it a lot in the summer, but, sorry, it's as inaccessible and annoying to me as Country music. Again, that's my problem, not yours.
Overall, I'm happy to pump most of these tracks throughout the summer and consider this an excellent reintroduction to what it truly bite the music.
Way to be, Kaitlyn.


  1. I'm glad you liked at least the first part. I am a big R&B fan but I, too, shut down immediately upon hearing country music so I guess I would feel the same way.

    As for High for This, I am coming to understand that it's a very polarizing song. I think that to truly appreciate Ellie Goulding's cover you'd have to be familiar with the original. What strikes me about it is the vastly different tone she sets with her version, but that maybe an empty comparison without hearing the first. I was going to add a remix I have that mashes her with a Lil' Wayne song ("Open your hand/Take a glass"/"Shut up bitch, swallow it") but that was too many levels of meta.

    And re Amadou et Mariam, I think you may be right that they feel out of place. I had like 10 songs I wanted to include that didn't really fit and this one was the easiest to shoehorn, but perhaps it would have been better suited to another mixtape. Ah well! We are all learning.

  2. I think you should totally post the original version of High For This.

    Maybe mot the Little Wayne mashup though...

    Also, who is li'ler, Jon or Wayne?