Album Reviews

Thanks again to Ann Norman for returning to share another album review of Carabao’s มนต์เพลงคาราบาว / Mon Pleng Carabao (The Spell of Carabao’s Songs), their 30th anniversary cover album, for everyone! :3

“Check out this fresh album of Carabao covers titled “Mon Pleang Carabao” [The Spell of Carabao Songs]. The old song by that title, released almost thirty years ago, proclaimed the Carabao mission statement––to produce mesmerizing music with a message—something that sticks with you long after the dance party is over. And the song invited the fans to “Come together to sing, make music.” Afterall, “Music isn’t a competition/There is truth and dreams in music.”

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Entitled simply “บทที่ 7 / Bot Tee Jet (Volume 7),” Punch’s latest release marks her 7th album in the 7 years she’s been singing professionally.

I’ve always liked Punch, really, I have, but to be honest, over the years her albums have pretty much flopped with me. Personally, I don’t like sad songs. I do admire them if there’s really strong emotion behind them, but otherwise I’m not a sad person, I don’t believe in getting upset or depressed over breakups or love romances, and I think the world would be a happier place if people just listened to more optimistic music. With Punch, it seems like the kick-off single for every one of her albums has been a really great, solid, uplifting song that gives me such high hopes for the album, then when the album finally does come out, every other song on it is slow, somber, and depressing. Every time. And every time, I cross my fingers and decide to check out her new albums anyway.

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Thank you to friend and fellow song translator, Ann Norman, for sharing her review of Ad Carabao’s new solo album “วันวานไม่มีเขา วันนี้ไม่มีเรา (Wun Wahn Mai Mee Kao, Wun Nee Mai Mee Rao)!”

“There is one perfect, shining song on this album, the title song, “Wan Waan Mai Mee Kow, Wan Nee Mai Mee Row.” [If Yesterday There Wasn’t Her, Today There Wouldn’t be Us] . Khun Aed explains that he was inspired to write this for his mother and for all mothers; that all mothers are saints to their children. This emotional tribute is delivered so earnestly, just the singing voice brings tears to the eyes, but, as always, the lyrics are more amazing than the tune. I don’t know about all mothers, but my mother was a saint, and so apparently was Aed’s mother. (Since her death, he is often seen wearing a T-shirt with her picture). According to this song, mothers teach us to “fly against the wind.” Another line that reduces me to tears: “Just seeing her, young men and women can fly off to the distant shore of their dreams.” Oh, and the song doubles as a tribute to the band Carabao and their community of fans. “Kow” in the title can mean “him/her” OR “horns” as in the hand signal: m/. So the main meaning of the title is “If yesterday there wasn’t her [our mothers], today there wouldn’t be us.” But the second meaning is “If yesterday there wasn’t the buffalo horns [ m/ ], today their wouldn’t be us [the community of fans].” That’s kind of cool!

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Let’s kick off the album review section, shall we? 😀

There hasn’t been many new releases recently; everything’s just been best-of or compilation albums except for Kangsom the Star’s debut, so I guess he gets to be the first on the chopping block! 😛 Which is good, cause it’ll get me out of my comfort zone music-wise. I’ll admit, I’m not a big fan of the Star (after season 4, at least), or any of Thailand’s gratuitous singing contest shows. I just feel like there’s TOO MANY of them, the seasons happen too often, and lately now EVERYONE on the show gets a recording contract, so it defeats the purpose of a contest to begin with. I feel like there’s so many solo artists running around with “The Star” tacked on to the end of their names, I can’t keep them straight. (Seriously, you wouldn’t believe how often I’ve mixed up Gun the Star and Kangsom). So much so that it makes me not want to listen to any of them because I lump them all together as being just mediocre. But, for the purpose of this review and the lack of any other new releases, I checked out Kangsom the Star’s debut album “24.7” and gave it a shot, and I was actually pleasantly surprised to find it’s a pretty solid album.

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