Ruminations: Conor Oberst – 3.5/5




The word “rumination” means deep thought and consideration, which is exactly what Conor Oberst put into his most recent album. Released on October 14th, Ruminations is Oberst’s 10th solo album. The entire album is recorded using only a guitar, piano, and harmonica. Furthermore, he has never been known for having a beautiful voice. He may sound pitchy and occasionally you can hear his voice trembling, but that is how you know he really feels what he is singing about. Oberst puts his deep, meaningful lyrics to this harsh and unrefined music to achieve a sense of raw emotion that comes straight from the soul. It is also interesting that he recorded the entire album in only two days. Previous albums that Oberst has worked on have been critiqued for being “over-produced.” It is a safe bet that he will not hear that criticism this time around. When listening to Ruminations, you may wonder if you’re really listening to a highly renowned musician and not some guy playing guitar in his livingroom. However, when you think about all the genius word selections and well-thought-out phrasing, you will quickly realize why Oberst is one of the greatest songwriters of his generation. He never fails to evoke strong emotion from his listeners, and isn’t that what it’s all about? He may not have the best voice, or production quality, but there is beautiful art in these flaws. Conor Oberst does what he does best with Ruminations. He tugs at your heart-strings.


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Revolution Radio – Green Day – 4/5



If you listen to the radio often, chances are, you’ve heard the song “Bang Bang” off of Green Day’s October 7th release, Revolution Radio. The album holds up to the expectations that come with being one of the greatest rock bands of our time. Green Day has done it again, complete with powerful guitar riffs and those political lyrics we have all come to love since their 1991 beginnings. Although “Bang Bang” is getting a lot of play on the radio, including 90.5 WERG, the Gannon University radio station, I personally enjoy the rest of the album much better. It is not that I do not like the hit song, I just think the rest of the album has a plethora of quality content that is getting overlooked. If you consider yourself a fan of rock music, I recommend you check out the other tracks that are not getting any love from the airwaves. One other aspect of Green Day’s latest album that is impressive is the album art. I love that they do not need a single word to tell you what it is. The image of a burning radio speaks for itself and tells you everything you need to know. Green Day has reached a level of fame where they do not require any explanation.


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