[Music] Elementary Listening | Jackson Free Press | Jackson, MS

[Music] Elementary Listening

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King Elementary has become one of the main attractions of the Jackson music scene in the past few years and extended its reach to venues nationwide, such as Los Angeles' renowned Viper Room and The Troubadour. They have been covered by Filter and Spin magazines. After King Elementary released their album "Kudzu" on Terminus Records this past summer, they went on their second West Coast tour and recently played throughout the Carolinas with The Films. Now they are recording demos for their first Capitol Records album.

Here the band members offer their top 10 albums that they have listened to and grown with through the years.

1. "The Band" — The Band
"I think this is the most perfect and complete album of all time," guitarist and vocalist Morgan Jones says. "The most interesting thing to me about it is that I've always thought Robbie Robertson is the greatest American songwriter of all time, but he's actually Canadian. There are so many ideas in the album, and it just makes you feel so many different things all the way through. It's all very honest with no pretension."

2. "Redheaded Stranger" — Willie Nelson
"I like 'Redheaded Stranger' because (Nelson) tells a story in the fewest words possible, and every word means something," drummer Andrew Fox says.

3. "XO" — Elliott Smith
"I think that's (Smith's) most complete album," Fox says.

"It's (Smith's) first major label and his first album with a full band," guitarist Jeremy Upton adds, "and after that you can tell more and more how messed up he got, because there was 'XO,' 'Figure 8,' and then the last one, which isn't even finished."

4. "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot" — Wilco
"I know all four of us agree that Wilco is probably the best band that has broken out
in the past fi ve years. And that was the first album that really showed what they're doing now," Jones says. "Jeff Tweedy said that with 'Being There' he just wanted to make the album that he loved as a kid, that full rock album, but then they came out from left field with 'Yankee Hotel Foxtrot,' which rarely ever succeeds."

5. "This Year's Model" — Elvis Costello
"The reason I like this album and Elvis Costello so much is that Costello has always sounded like if Bob Dylan had been born when Costello was and had been that influenced by punk rock music," Jones says. "I heard my dad say that first, and I've always thought of Costello the same way. I listen to his lyrics the same way you would listen to Dylan lyrics. I think he's great."

6. "Rubber Soul" — the Beatles
"'Rubber Soul' is the only one Beatles album that you could say has all the elements of all the others," Upton says. "It's the last of their first albums, which have really great songwriting but simple rock 'n roll style, and the beginning of their experimental." "It's the Beatles. … They're so damn perfect," Jones says.

7. "The Argument" — Fugazi
"If you had asked my top five bands, I would have said Fugazi, and I think that's their best album. I think they were literally and figuratively grown up when they made that album," Jones says.

8. "After the Gold Rush" — Neil Young
"That album talked me out of playing guitar," Jones confesses. "This album was after Young had played with CSN, and I heard David Crosby, Stephen Stills, and Graham Nash say after this album that they knew (Young) was so far ahead of them, so much better than them, and they couldn't catch him. CSN is great and wonderful, but this album just blows them away, in my opinion."

9. "Velvet Underground" — the Velvet Underground
"It was right at the end of the Beatles' career, and the Beatles and the Velvet Underground were great in a completely different way," Upton says. "You couldn't really say which one is better, but they both give you different feelings. They have different sounds, but they're both kind of similar too."

10. "Experimental Jet Set, Trash & No Star" — Sonic Youth
"They were the first band who after sixth and seventh grade, only liking the Deftones, White Zombie and Nirvana, opened me up to all different types of bands," Jones says. "Sonic Youth is one of the bands so integral in the way music goes to me that if you listen to them, you will automatically fi nd in some way, shape or form all different types of bands."

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