Archive for February, 2011

The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown

February 15, 2011


I really liked this character-driven novel about 3 sisters, the daughters of a Shakespeare-obsessed academic, and their complicated relationships as they return home as adults.  It’s a funny, smart, enjoyable read.

Available as an ebook and audiobook on Libby/Overdrive.

The Weird Sisters - ebook

Paramore – Brand New Eyes Music CD

February 7, 2011


Paramore [with Hayley Williams] or Haley Williams [with Paramore…]; music review CD Brand new Eyes.

The nicest woman in rock so said BBC Radio 1 about Hayley Williams last summer, it was quite an accolade. And one almost universally bestowed upon one “T. Swift”. Certainly it is not for me to say. Except that interviews that I have heard on the UK radio tend to corroborate this statement. Which is interesting because only a month or so ago there was a considerable row here in America regarding the band Paramore.

The long and short of it was that several band members had quit claiming Machiavellian intrigue from the lead singer. And accusations went back and forth from websites to press releases, which is a pity because all this drama detracts from the reason for all of this which is the music. And the music itself from the album “Brand New Eyes” is in my opinion very good. 

BNE showcases Ms. Williams’ talents as a singer which are considerable. Her work with rapper B. o. B. and also the version with Eminem of the mega hit single “Airplanes” is rightly amazing and a treat for the ears. If we add the track “Decode” that appeared on the first “Twilight” film you have real winners. This does not include a delicious version of the Kings of Leon’s “Use somebody” on the BBC’s live lounge and Hayley’s own [done on what appears to be her mobile phone’s camera] as she sings a solo version of Lady Gaga’s “Bad romance” albeit only 1:44 seconds on Youtube demonstrates this woman’s amazing voice.

Paramore’s BNE is high energy music. Hayley’s voice is one that just does not quit. It is really up to the task here. Hayley was voted after Evanescence’s Amy Lee, as the second sexiest woman in Rock in 2009. No mean feat that. And I would be the last to dispute either. Back to Brand new Eyes. Tracks like “Brick by boring brick”, “Igrorance”, “Playing God” and “Careless” demonstrate Paramore’s and Williams’ talents. This is pain and lots of it. There is anger and lots of that too. It is defiantly not warm and fuzzy music. As I said before there is lots of energy. Intense? Very.

Those of us approaching 60 have all but forgotten the passions of those now teens and 20 somethings and what moved you then and younger people now. What with bills, laundry, work, family, the economy, more bills… time passes all too quickly, but… If you have not entirely forgotten those passions, listen to Paramore’s album. I believe it is worth your time. And I am inclined to agree with the BBC who claimed Hayley Williams as the nicest woman in rock, she sure sounded like it as I listened to a long interview last summer. And my experience is that you don’t often get a moniker unless you deserve it. So I tend to agree that Hayley Williams is a very nice person. I hope you will too.    

bill littlefield