Dream Ritual: 10 albums you should love as much as they do
Wednesday, February 20, 2019 - 17:33
- by Tom Dumarey
Springfield, MO's Dream Ritual recently announced their brand new EP, 'Trips Around The Sun,' due out March 22nd. The melodic, fuzz-laden songs that make up the EP are made up of equal parts punk energy, grunge and even classic rock influences, further marked by swirls of psychedelia. In other words, just the kind of band that makes us wonder about their influences. So we went ahead and asked vocalist/guitarist Jason Nunn.
1. Nancy Sinatra & Lee Hazlewood - Nancy & Lee
This record is fucking great, man. It was one of the biggest inspirations for our new record. It is so undeniably '60s. I just love the combination of their voices and the super lush arrangements. Nancy's voice is so tender and Lee's songwriting is so inventive—real cosmic cowboy vibes.
2. Roy Orbison - Crying
I never listened to Roy Orbison growing up aside from hearing “Pretty Woman” and didn't know any of his other songs until I watched Blue Velvet for the first time. He has lots of great records and is such a badass. Frickin' four octave vocal range and insane use of song structure. He’s a master of using simple yet genius lyrics that cut to your core.
3. Nirvana - In Utero
I would be remiss not to include this record. In my opinion, it’s one of the greatest-sounding rock records ever. The super deluxe remastered version from a few years ago also includes a bunch of amazing songs that didn't make the record and the board recording from the 'Live & Loud' MTV special, which is one of their best live performances.
4. The Byrds - The Notorious Byrd Brothers
I knew the Byrds' hit songs from when I was first getting into guitar and classic rock but had never heard this record before Dakota showed it to me a year or two ago. I got heavy into the rest of their discography after that. It’s the perfect blend of psychedelic rock and country with tons of great harmonies, cool arrangements, and sweet Rickenbacker 12 string.
5. The Vines - Highly Evolved
The Vines are easily the most underrated band of the big garage rock thing that happened in the early to mid '00s. Craig Nicholls is a great songwriter and has awesome guitar tone and a super cool voice. They’re another band that balanced catchiness, grunginess, and psychedelia perfectly. They're still putting out records and writing good songs.
6. The La's - S/T
The La's are one of those crazy bands that put out one amazing record and then disappeared. Liam Gallagher mentioned them in an interview so I checked them out. The way this album was recorded gave it such a natural sound and it is full of uniquely well written songs. I love his voice and the way all the instruments fit together. Also, “There She Goes”. What a song.
7. George Harrison - All Things Must Pass
I think everyone in Dream Ritual unanimously agrees that George is the coolest Beatle. It blows my mind that they passed on some of these songs for the last two Beatles records. I'm usually not a fan of double albums, but both of these records are loaded with amazing songs.
8. Soundgarden - Superunknown
I read an interview once in which Chris Cornell (RIP) referred to this album as their “White Album” period and I think that pretty perfectly sums up this record. To call it a Sabbath/Beatles hybrid gets close but does not do it justice. There are so many inventive tunings, riffs, and weird time signature stuff going on here. I think lots of bands in the '90s got away with being heavy and not really having any good songs whereas Soundgarden wrote great songs that were heavy without strictly relying on the heaviness. I don't think any band of this era can match Soundgarden's technical chops either. Cut “Spoonman” and you've got yourself a perfect record.
9. Alvvays - Antisocialites
I have not heard a modern band that writes better songs than Alvvays. I didn't think it would be possible for them to top their debut but I knew they had done it when they released “In Undertow” as the first single. I love every single song they have released. Everything about this band's image is perfect to me. Each album cover, video, flyer, and press picture feels perfectly calculated and not all at the same time. To top it all off, they're even better live.
10. Marty Robbins - Gunfighter Ballads and Trail Songs
My friends Patrick and Liz turned me on to this record and murder ballads as a concept in general. He has such a sweet voice and these are such sweet sounding songs. The juxtaposition of that combination with lyrics about getting shot/shooting people is something I haven't yet grown tired of. It’s such a cool album that feels like an important snapshot of American history.