Treasure map

Buried Treasures & Robin Thicke Review

Jim and Greg dig deep for Buried Treasures. They spotlight great albums buried under the Top 40. Then it's back to the charts for a review of the latest from blue-eyed soul singer Robin Thicke.

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Music News

It's been a rough week for digital music. First Radiohead frontman Thom Yorke and producer Nigel Godrich openly criticize Spotify and boot Atoms for Peace songs from the streaming service. The, the Musicians' Union in the U.K. threaten a boycott if Spotify doesn't raise its royalty rates. And now Aimee Mann is suing MediaNet, which provides millions of songs to dozens of music services. She's seeking damages for "willful copyright infringement."

Sure, we could imagine Bono going for an “EGOT,” but "Commander"? The Irish rocker was recently awarded the country's highest cultural honor: Commander of Arts and Letters in recognition of his contributions to the arts and to charity. Rapper Nas was also given an unusual honor. Harvard University has established the Nasir Jones Hip-Hop Fellowship as part of its Hip-Hop Archive and W.E.B. Du Bois Institute.

Since its launch in 2008, Record Store Day has become something music fans eagerly anticipate. And now they'll also have…wait for it…Cassette Store Day! True, there aren't many stores that solely sell cassettes, but on September 7, a number of bands will release special cassettes and artists like The Flaming Lips, Deerhunter and At the Drive-In will reissue albums on cassettes. So breakout your Walkman and get ready.

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Buried Treasures

This week, Jim and Greg bypass the festival headliners to bring you great music from the unknown artists on the side stage. It's our summer installment of Buried Treasures. These artists may not be household names, but their music demands attention. Here are Jim and Greg's hidden gems:

reviewBlurred LinesBlurred Lines available on iTunes

Robin Thicke Blurred Lines

Now it's back to the charts, where Robin Thicke's catchy single "Blurred Lines" has dominated for weeks (proving once and for all that music fans want more cowbell). Before he achieved YouTube ubiquity, Jim reminds us that Thicke was just another journeyman blue-eyed soul singer. He'd written hits for artists like Brandy and Christina Aguilera, but failed to gain much recognition for his solo work. He's changed that with Blurred Lines, his sixth studio album. Does the record measure up to its single? Greg says no. He loves the“Blurred Lines”groove, but relents that the album's lyrics are full of“single entendre”idiocy.“This is a dumb R&B record,”he says, "Trash It." Jim agrees that Thicke's lyrics leave a lot to be desired, but gives him credit for crafting the kind of fun danceable tracks we‘d hoped to get from Justin Timberlake’s 20/20 Experience. On the strength of“Blurred Lines”alone, Jim says Burn It.

JimGreg

Featured Songs

  1. Goose Island Credit Music: Pure Sunray,“Caramel,”Pure Sunray, 2013
  2. Kings of Leon, Supersoaker, Supersoaker (Single), RCA Records, 2013
  3. Nas, This World Is Yours, Illmatic, Columbia, 1994
  4. Bow Wow Wow, C30, C60, C90, Go, Girl Bites Dog, Capitol, 1993
  5. Bombino, Amidinine, Nomad, Nonesuch, 2012
  6. White Lung, St. Dad, Sorry, Deranged, 2012
  7. Moderat, Bad Kingdom, II, Monkeytown, 2013
  8. Purling Hiss, Lolita, Water on Mars, Drag City, 2013
  9. Purling Hiss, Rat Race, Water on Mars, Drag City, 2013
  10. ProbCause, LSD, The Recipe Vol. 2, N/A, 2013
  11. Autre Ne Veut, Counting, Anxiety, Software, 2013
  12. Trixie Whitley, Irene, Fourth Corner, Strong Blood Records, 2013
  13. Zomby, Overdose, With Love, 4AD, 2013
  14. Palma Violets, Johnny Bagga' Donuts, 180, Rough Trade US, 2013
  15. Palma Violets, Best of Friends, 180, Rough Trade US, 2013
  16. Waxahatchee, Peace and Quiet, Cerulean Salt, Don Giovanni Records, 2013
  17. Robin Thicke, Blurred Lines, Blurred Lines, Star Trak/Interscope, 2013
  18. Robin Thicke, Get In My Way, Blurred Lines, Star Trak/Interscope, 2013
  19. The Andrews Sisters, The Telephone Song, The Andrews Sisters, Wnts, 2010
  20. Pavement, Here, Slanted and Enchanted, Matador, 1992
  21. The Smiths, How Soon Is Now?, How Soon Is Now? (Single), Rough Trade, 1985
  22. Run the Jewels, Banana Clipper, Run the Jewels, Fool's Gold, 2013

Footnotes

variety.com Thom Yorke protests Spotify musiciansunion.org The U.K. Musicians Union guardian.co.uk Spotify's boycott billboard.com Aimee Mann's copyright lawsuit cinemablend.com What's an EGOT? billboard.com Bono awarded in France rollingstone.com Nas at Harvard harvard.edu Nasir Jones HipHop Fellowship recordstoreday.com Record Store Day nme.com Cassette Store Day chicagotribune.com Greg reviews Blurred Lines youtube.com Blurred Lines soundcloud.com Sound Opinions reviews JT