When I sit down to write about each week's pick I like to pretend that some benevolent being allows me to choose one album every week to receive as a gift. I try to make it not about money or cost so that I'm not just choosing some expensive boxed set or collector's edition. I always try to choose the album that looks most interesting to me and that I really would like to take home with me.
Sometimes the choice is easy - there's one stand-out album that blows everything else away. Sometimes the pick is hard. There will be multiple albums coming out that look really amazing and I have to internally debate which one I want the most. Othertimes there's just nothing at all that peaks my interest and I have to make a few educated guesses as to what I might enjoy.
This week is a best guess scenario. The trouble is that while I've heard of a number of artists releasing albums this week, I'm not particularly familiar with any of them. I've heard their names, perhaps even listened to a few tracks, but I don't know them enough to make declaritive statements about their music, nor rush out and make them my pick of the week. Instead I'll tentatively pick one (because I kind of have to - after all the column isn't called "Albums that Might Be Pretty Good, Maybe that Come Out this Week."
The Eels are a band who, again, I've heard of, I've seen various amounts of praised heeped upon them from various websites, blogs and Facebook posts, but whom I cannot conjure in anyway in my mental audio memories. A quick check of my iTunes collection reveals I actually have three songs of theirs. One from a Scrubbs soundtrack is beat heavy and sounds like a fun dance tune. The other two are cover songs of Daniel Johnston and Bob Dylan. Both of those are more laid back folk numbers that are a little reminiscent of The Low Anthem. I find I like all the tunes but I'm guessing they aren't necessarily representative of the Band as a whole as cover songs can wind up in weird places.
Still, that's enough to make me interested in learning more. Mark Oliver Everett is the given name of the band's frontman (who goes by the stage name "E") so presumably this will be a rather personal album (or perhaps some sort of strange concept album.) Either way I'm ready to give it a listen.
If that's not exactly excited anticipation for a Pick of the Week, then you have my apologies. All I can say is that some weeks are like that, and maybe we'll all have better luck next time.
Also out this week that looks interesting:
Live in Holland 1976 - Little Feat: I know these guys were big in the 70s and they like to jam. I have a bootleg with the band rocking out with the Grateful Dead's Phil Lesh so I know they've got mad chops, but I know little of their own music. This appears to be a peak year for them and I never turn down official live music.
Bluesamericana - Keb Mo: Yet another artist whose name I know and who has a good reputation but that I know little about.
Better Days Comin' - Winger
Give 'em Hell - Sebastian Bach: Two new albums by metal artists that peaked in the '80s. I won't buy this but I kind of dig that they are still out there doing there thing.