History For Sale
UG Team, on september 11, 2003 1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Overall Impression: Overall, this is easily the best album I've bought all year. Out of the 13 songs (including the bonus acoustic version of "Calling You"), I absolutely love 12 of the songs. The other one just strikes me as OK, but perhaps it has something to do with the fact I have no clue what the fuck the song is talking about "3 Weeks, She Sleeps" is one of the most beautiful songs I've ever heard. It's nothing but violin, mandolin, and some brilliant flute playing, which Justin's voice seems to match perfectly.
"Somebody" is the heaviest song on the album, and I bet it sounds fucking intense live. The guitar riff reminds me quite a bit of "Thunderkiss '65" by White Zombie. Awesome, awesome song.
Although it's not the heaviest song on the album, riff-wise, "Razorblade" is the most intense, lyrically. It's about the priest child molestation scandals. If this song doesn't touch you, disturb you, then there's something wrong with you.
"Calling You" is the best single on the radio right now, and with any luck, it will be the song that gives Blue October the mainstream success they have deserved for years. Although the poppiest song on the album, the album's so diverse that it's just as good of a representation of the band as anything.
"Come in Closer" is a brilliant song, but it doesn't feel like a Blue October song.. it's just Justin, an electric drum loop, a piano, and a female backing singer... but the fact that the rest of the band isn't used doesn't detract from it's greatness.. a great change of pace.
"Sexual Powertrip (One Big Lie) Bla Bla", besides having the coolest album title evhar, is the most fun song on the album. It's about lying to get some poon. And really, there's nothing wrong with that, is there? Everything on this song just... works.
"Inner Glow" is a song about the music industry, and the lack of originality. The line... "Here's a preview, shove it under old/new, call it Rock.. or Pop... or Bach.. or FUCK! Goddamn, where did we go wrong? Now there's a category for every song!" is my favorite line on the album. The arrangement of the song strikes me as a soundtrack cut, the type of song you'd hear in the credits of a movie.
"Ugly Side", the first track on the album, is a really good way to start the album.. the electronic drum loop with a violin... then it goes straight into a mandolin and acoustic guitar melody. It's about the dualistic nature of man. Really nice song, again.
"Amazing" is another beautiful song, but it's the closer of the album... an acoustic ballad, but the lyrics are pretty depressing... "Can you pretend I'm amazing? Instead of what we both know..." But it's a really good way to close the album.. unless you count the acoustic "Calling You", which starts about 10 minutes into this track, about 4 minutes after the song ends.
"Chameleon Boy" is relating to a friend of the band that died of a drug overdose after their last album, Consent to Treatment, was released. It's about Justin's feelings that he didn't do enough to help, to prevent it.. another really powerful song(this album is just chock full of 'em, you know?)
"Clumsy Card House" has one of the best openings of the album.. a mandolin into the full band... A song about love, and contemplation of the future... and it's really beautifully arranged.
"A Quiet Mind"... I'll admit it, I have no clue what the song's about, so I'm not big on it.. but I'd still rather listen to it than 90% of the garbage on the radio today. A good, but not great song.
The album's full of great written songs, beautiful, albiet unconventional arrangements, and most of the songs have a potent message.
You can find this album for under 10 bucks, I can almost guarantee you. I found it at Hasting's for 8.99. This can be the album that can really break these guys from a regional Texas band to a nationally and internationally known band, as they dserve to be. Give this album a chance. Trust me on this. // 10
History For Sale
UG Team, on september 11, 2003 1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Overall Impression: Never having heard of Blue October except for a few concert adds here in there thru Deep Ellum I had no idea what to think, and my naiveté has paid off. A quick run thru gave off influences as vast as U2, Celtic instrumentation and moods, Psychedelic Furs and a load of British bands that straddle the line between ethereal and clean.
Opener Ugly Side blends a lush Celtic violin against a sound reminiscent of Flesh For Lulu, with a gentle but abundant chorus brushing up to the aforementioned ethereal mood of the guitars. Razorblade segues back into a more American sound as vocalist Justin Furstenfeld blends an angered Dave Matthews delivery with the looseness of Perry Farrell. At times the record closes in on the material that Tripping Daisy was doing during their Elastic period, but don't regard this as a rip but more of a influence. Chameleon Boy begins with a simple acoustic chord pattern accentuating, Furstenfeld's fragile yet confident voice as get ready for another breakdown sounds rest assured. A Quiet Mind utilizes the distinctive timbre of a cello to set the tone for the upcoming pop chorus and clean guitars not too far removed from Vertical Horizon. Inner Glow mixes in The Edge's (U2) guitar chime with the melody of Third Eye Blind's How's It Going To Be. It's not that Blue October aren't trying to give an original twist to their sound, its' just that I need reference points in order to describe their style. Somebody turns up the volume a little louder as guitarist CB Hudson gets to use that distortion pedal he invested in. Closing statement Amazing once again blends rich sounding acoustics with a subtle lullaby delivery by Furstenfeld, solidifying the sound that makes up the album: strong acoustically driven pop with lush vocals occasionally washed in electrics.
It's very rare nowadays that I have my ears pricked up by bands and considering that Blue October is a Texas band makes this discovery a little bit sweeter. Though this is not my usual cup of tea, I'd recommend it to those who yearn for some fine songwriting mixed with excelling musicianship and experimentation. Coincidently, the band regularly sells out local venues, and that just goes to show you how out of touch I am with things on a local regard. I best start scanning the Observer a little more often. // 10
History For Sale
UG Team, on september 11, 2003 0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Overall Impression: This is the third album to come out of this Houston band and to tell you the truth; it is by far their best yet. I have seen this band live three times and each time they shock me. You're probably thinking right about now Blue what? However, don't fret; you will be caught up in no time. So go buy the CD now fu*kers. You can get it from their website. And my movie plug of the week goes out to Equilibrium. Kick ass movie, nuff said. Read Scott Keith's rant of the movie here. Keith sums up the movie very well.
Anyway, let me start with some past history and why this album is so good. First of all, there is not one bad song on this album. Every song is great and just full of so much emotion that you just want to weep like a little bitch. Well maybe not but you get my drift. The story behind this band is focused on lead singer Justin Furstenfeld. Legend has it that he was engaged to be married. Things were going smooth until the bitch screwed his best friend James (who is the focus of a disturbing song on the first album). Well after some time in an institution, Justin got out, found his friend, and bet the ever living shit out of the cunt. If that story doesn't make you shiver then you are a cold heartless wench. Anywho, now that we are caught up lets start reviewing.
Ugly Side is the first song on the album. The title pretty much sums up what this song is about. With a very catchy chorus and C.B kicking ass on guitar like always leads to a pretty slow and enjoyable opening song. It is slow most of the way through but does get a little harder guitar in the chorus. 3.5/5
Clumsy Card House is next and just so happens to be my favorite on the CD. It starts with arguably the best mandolin playing I have ever heard. Not that I have heard a lot of mandolin playing but you get the point. The song might seem a little sappy to some of you (ass holes) but the lyrics and the semi fast pace keeps you wanting more by the time it is done. 5/5
Razorblade is next and we finally get to see a darker side of Justin. And while you're praying hands were up/There's no forgiveness for you! You sick fuck!, You wounded them for life./You were a preacher and suppose to be above men. If this doesn't tell you what the song is like then I don't know what can. This is definitely the heaviest song on the album and also one of the best. 4.5/5
Calling You is next and is also the band's first single off of the album. It gets a great deal of radio play here in Dallas. It starts off slow but really picks up by the end. I can't say it is a bad choice for a single but I think the band could have done better in picking a single. One that doesn't sound so poppy. I went to see them last Friday and there were 10 year olds running around everywhere with their parents. Now, this is a bad idea on many levels. First of all, well at least in my opinion, the music is not meant to be classified as pop. When I hear a pop singer say they want to rip out someone's entrails (the song James from the first album) then I will believe it. Not to mention fuck being thrown around several times. It kind of reminds me South Park the Movie when I was growing up. Violence and nudity are ok, as long as they don't use any nasty language. But what do I know. Fucking kids. I sound like I am 50. Fuck it. 4/5
Chameleon Boy is next. The song is dedicated to Brandon Ball (friend of the band) who overdosed on I believe heroine (I might be wrong). The song is very slow and poignant but not one of my favorites. 3/5
Sexual Powertrip is second heaviest song on the album and another of my favorites. Great drums and guitars throughout. Justin uses a voice echoer in this song which sounds great. Can you show me how to treat someone?/ I don't recall ever learning how./ Because I keep fucking up./ I keep fucking up. This lyric sums up what the CD is like. Most of the songs on the album are about Justin's ex-fiance. 5/5
A Quiet Mind is next. Once again, a mandolin is used in the background of this song. This is a slow but a great one. This is a very moving song and one of many that will water your eyes. Not much else to say. 4.5/5
3 Weeks, She Sleeps is really too short to really review. Lasting almost 2 minutes, this song doesn't really give you a good feel for what the band is like. However, it does have some of the best flute playing I have ever heard. The background music is almost nonexistent through most of the song but picks up some toward the end of the song. 4/5
The album picks right back up with Inner Glow. With great guitars all around, this song truly puts you in a good mood. The lyrics are fun as well. Here's a preview. Shove it under old/new/ Or call it rock, or pop, or Bach, or fuck/God damn where did I go wrong? 5/5
Somebody is next and happens to be very chilling. This is one of the songs that will give you goose bumps, especially when you hear it live. I am tired of quoting lyrics so just buy the CD and listen to the song. 4.5/5
Come in Closer is next with guest vocals by one of the hottest women I have ever laid eyes on, Zayra. Once again you are probably scratching your head wondering who this person is. Well she is an artist under the same label as the band and she tours with them frequently. She has a great voice and I believe will soon be going places. 5/5
And finally Amazing. This is without a doubt the deepest song on the album. This song focuses on Justin's ex more then any other song. When I first heard this song live I knew I was going to buy this CD. It has that kind of effect on you. It does not stimulate your buying impulses if that's what you think but it does grab you and does not let go. The lyrics are amazing in this song. 5/5 // 10
History For Sale
electric7, on august 18, 2006 0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Sound: Texas' Blue October surely it the jackpot with there 3rd album "History For Sale". It blends sounds that you would need to buy many separte CDs to hear. Blue Ocotober's lyrics are one thing that puts them above the rest: real, and anyone who thinks elsewise is messed up in the head. In an interview with Yahoo!, Justin admitted he spent a short period of time in a mental hospital. He also says that he doesn't "even remember writing half the lyrics". Truthfully, there is no possible way to list the sounds Blue October used in this record, such as Razorblade versus 3 Weeks, She Sleeps. Blue October, at time of writing, has released their 4th album "Foiled". Both are very well put together, but I listen to "History For Sale" a lot more. // 10
Lyrics: The lyrics in the songs are as I said they are: real. The music is well put together with the lyrics, and shows real thought put into it, unlike some bands today.
01. Ugly Side - this song is driving, inovative, and a good opener. The string and drum intro are awesome. Justin's vocals work well with this song.
02. Clumsy Card House - the intro plucking is awesome, and the lyrics, while a bit repetitive, are still good, like "By the way/By your side I'll stay/Forever".
03. Razorblade - I was told this was a song about child molestation by a priest, like the verse: "In a way I failed religion/Spit the wine from mouth to cup/And I reached for something more than just a god/Uncle, you spared not your children/And while your praying hands were up/There's no forgivness for you/You sick f---!"
04. Calling You - while I never saw "American Wedding", which this sonw was featured in, I'm sure it fit perfectly. The whole instrument arrangment was great, and perfect for this song.
05. Chameleon Boy - I can really relate to this song. It's lyrics "I lack the beauty for display/ See here there are some bruises/Some where self-inflicted" are the ones I most relate to.
06. Sexual Powertrip - while I can't see Justin in a music video that relates to the lyrics unless it's like a band video, but overall this song is good.
07. A Quiet Mind - "I call baby up/Leave me alone/I'm in pain/But I won't let you bandage my wound/I am at a state where I can't seem to handle my own.":D
08. 3 Weeks, She Sleeps - short, sweet and to the point. Nothing could make this song much better.
09. Inner Glow - I love this song. Along with "3 Weeks" and "Chameleon Boy", this is one of the best songs on the album.
10. Somebody - they took a great angel on this one: Grunge. They do this style well.
11. Come In Closer - the added female vocals that mix with Justin's are awesome.
12. Amazing - I love the lyrics in this song, such as "See I've made you into something more delicious, my sweet ghost". They give me chills.
All in all, the lyircs and music really combin to form something euphoric. // 10
Overall Impression: The overall impression of this album is something that you will like 20 years from now. The songs never get old, and you can't stop yourelf from dancing on some of the tracks, and feeling sad for others. To tell the truth, I would re-buy this album, even though I could just burn it off iTunes. It's just that good. Most artists can't compare to Blue October, and they never will, if they keep this style of theirselves up. The perfect blend of strings, guitars, percussion, and vocals mix together to make a great CD. // 10