Friday, 25 March 2011

Random Review #34 Elliott Smith - XO

C6S6CD6 Was picked by my Facebook pal and ex work colleague John Loadman.

OK I'm going to say it, I don't like Elliott Smith as much as I think I should. Sensitive singer songwriter, songs about lost love. Tragic ending to his live (he committed suicide) are usually all the things I like in a musician but try as I do, I still struggle with Smith. He struggled with drug addiction and depression for most of his adult life and a lot of this is reflected in his music.

I have three albums, this on OX, Blue Moon, and View From A Basement on the Hill, and try as I do every time I play them I never seem to play them all the way through, I find myself flicking to the radio and then back to CD.

If you have seen Good Will Hunting then you will have heard Elliott Smith his tune from the film Miss Misery, it was nominated for an Oscar, he lost out to Celine Dion
(it was Titanic year!) I suspect Smith wasn't very comfortable is performance at the Oscars he looks like a fish out of water. I guess what I'm trying to say is that Smith could have been a contender some of his music was that good and he could have been a household name. The dice fall another way and we are talking about someone who tragically took his life depressed and all alone.

So I tried with this album I tried to work out why I struggle with his music.I think it's the rhythm of the songs, they start and stop and the vocals are a a little light for me. My favourite songs are Baby Britain and Waltz #2 (XO) but I would struggle to pick any of the other songs to put on a play list.

If this exercise in picking random CDs has made me do one thing it has forced me to listen to music in my collection that if I had a choice I wouldn't really pick and when I do I am trying to work out who I wouldn't usually pick them. Elliott Smith is a great artist however there are many more I would prefer to listen to!

Mark 5/10

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