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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Free on iTunes

    As I would hope you are aware, iTunes lets you download a handful of free songs every week. Free never means just that, however; the costs here are time and dignity. To spare you the potentially wasted minutes and near-certain embarrassment of acquiring crappy music, here is what you should know about this week’s free songs:

    *Daddy (feat. Naughty Boy)*
    Emeli Sandé

    Sandé is undeniably a talented singer, but this song isn’t the best showcase for her skills. Maybe the collaboration is to blame (I really couldn’t say, since it isn’t clear what Naughty Boy’s contribution was). The synthesized church bells and string section swells certainly don’t add much, either. “Daddy” is a fairly bland pop song. The lyrics and delivery are definitely a cut above your typical chart-topping pop fare, but the music doesn’t really grab the listener.

    Bottom line: If you like female pop artists like Adele or Nicki Minaj, you’ll probably enjoy it. If you don’t, “Daddy” isn’t going to convert you.

    Lucky That Way
    Joe Walsh

    If you know who Joe Walsh is, there’s nothing for me to say. For those who don’t, God help you. Massively successful as both a member of the Eagles and as a solo act, Walsh has sold more records than the number of calories a sumo wrestler consumes in a year. Unfortunately, “Lucky That Way” is not up to Walsh’s ass-kicking standards of past work. Lyrically, it is a sort of old-age sequel to “Life’s Been Good,” while stylistically it’s fairly smooth country-rock.

    Walsh’s singing sounds remarkably like Tom Petty in his old age, but his guitar chops are as sharp as ever. The sparse lead guitar lines can’t save this song from the lack of a compelling hook and the over-processed production, though. Joe Walsh was a giant in the classic rock era, with distinctive vocal delivery and wall-shaking guitar tone. I can understand mellowing with age, but giving in to the homogenous sound of the modern musical landscape is entirely different.

    Bottom line: Classic rock fans will find both joy and pain while everyone else will be bored.

    Jukebox the Ghost

    This band had all the makings to be a disappointment: pretentious indie name, five-plus years of toiling in obscurity, bearded hipster musicians. So I was pleasantly surprised when “Somebody” was not only tolerable but pretty good. A strong, bass-heavy drumbeat, prominent but not overpowering piano chords, rollicking guitar and authentic vocals that know their own limits all contribute to a solid and enjoyable song. These guys know how to play, and more importantly, they know how to put together a piece of music. If this single is any indication, finding several more equally delightful songs on their new album Safe Travels should be easy.

    Bottom line: Definitely worth a listen, and a no-brainer download for fans of indie pop, rock or alternative.

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