Call for Essays About Any Aspect of Popular Culture, Present or Past

Sean McCarthy

Sean McCarthy is a freelance journalist and an old media news junkie.


Features

Wednesday, September 17 2014

Us in Their Land: An Interview with Mike Watt

Mike Watt has been in so many iconic bands that it's sometimes easy to lose count, but now, with a stripped-down Italian trio called il sogno del marinaio, Watt is doing his most daring work yet ...


Tuesday, August 26 2014

Tongue Firmly in Cheek: An Interview with Ace Frehley

Several years sober, KISS' Ace Frehley comes fresh off some time at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame to release his first solo album in over five years -- and definitely knows how to write a sexy song better than Robin Thicke.


Sunday, February 2 2014

Breathe This Air: An Interview with Jon Hopkins

Jon Hopkins' Mercury Music Prize winning Immunity was an electronic masterpiece that was unlike anything people had heard before.


Monday, May 6 2013

Power and the Passion: An Interview with Midnight Oil

They were big in Australia, but as politics slowly began to inform their lyrics, the band soon began taking off worldwide, and now, with an epic two-disc retrospective out, Rob Hirst walks us through Midnight Oil's entire career, and what a journey it is.


Tuesday, October 4 2011

Exquisite Corpse: Guns N' Roses' 'Use Your Illusion I and II'

If there was a gravestone for MTV-style '80s metal, it would probably be Guns N' Roses' 1991 opus Use Your Illusion I and Use Your Illusion II.


Reviews

Wednesday, November 12 2014

Where Does Kanye West's 'My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy' Stand in the Canon?

Kirk Walker Graves' mix of fanboy marvel and critical detachment will convince even Kanye West detractors to give My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy a close listen.


Monday, August 18 2014

Pallbearer: Foundations of Burden

Little Rock's Pallbearer add some studio sheen with their sophomore release while maintaining the mudslide-like heaviness of their acclaimed debut.


Sunday, June 29 2014

Joe Henry: Invisible Hour

Lyrically dense and musically intimate, Invisible Hour, aims to be less a part of your hard drive and more a part of your record collection.


Monday, May 5 2014

Hannibal Buress: Live From Chicago

In what should have been a breakout album, Live From Chicago feels like a master storyteller retell jokes you've already heard.


Wednesday, November 13 2013

Luscious Jackson: Magic Hour

Luscious Jackson's first album in almost 15 years was part of a fan-driven campaign. Unfortunately, much of Magic Hour will have fans likely wanting more.


Blogs

Tuesday, September 16 2014

Requiem for Perfection: R.I.P. iPod Classic

Last week, Apple answered the question "Why mess with perfection?" by quietly killing off the iPod Classic.


Wednesday, February 26 2014

A Strange Invitation: Ranking the Beck Albums

A coffee house fixture in Los Angeles, Beck nearly got lost in the deluge of alt-rockers with his left-field hit "Loser". Then his follow-up album put him in the category of musical visionary. Ranging from barely-contained chaotic works to seamless masterpieces, here are his ten best efforts.


Wednesday, February 12 2014

Ain't Talking 'Bout Love: Top 10 Definitive Breakup Albums

During a week where you're bombarded with overpriced consumerism disguised as love, here are ten albums that look at love's hangover.


Thursday, October 3 2013

"Felina" Is One of the Best Episodes of 'Breaking Bad'

"Ozymandias" may be Breaking Bad's crowing achievement, but "Felina" gave audiences what they wanted, and it's mercifully devoid of pandering.


Tuesday, September 4 2012

The Top 5 Definitive Summer Movie Years

Be it providing the ingredients for a successful summer movie "recipe" or by opening new ways to roll out blockbusters, here are the top five "definitive" years for summer movies.


The Dark Knight Rises - Trailer 3 (Mixed Media) [30.Apr.12]
God, I Hate Listening to This Guy (Sources Say) [6.Mar.12]
Evolution Calling: Tool - "Third Eye" (Sound Affects) [10.Oct.11]
Evolution Calling: Tool - "(-) Ions" (Sound Affects) [3.Oct.11]
Evolution Calling: Tool - "Eulogy" and "H" (Sound Affects) [22.Aug.11]
Evolution Calling: Tool - "Stinkfist" (Sound Affects) [15.Aug.11]
A Lingering Bell Rings in 'Saved by the Bell' (Channel Surfing) [26.May.11]
Here's to You, Michael Been (Sound Affects) [25.Aug.10]
Lauryn Hill Considered (Mixed Media) [29.Jun.10]
Girls Behaving Badly (Short Ends and Leader) [23.Jun.10]
Lady Gaga - "Alejandro" (video) NSFW (Mixed Media) [11.Jun.10]
Don't Blame Audiences for the Box Office Blues (Short Ends and Leader) [10.Jun.10]
Fade to Black: R.I.P. Ronnie James Dio (Sound Affects) [17.May.10]
De La Soul Is Dead: Long Live De La Soul (Sound Affects) [14.Apr.10]
The Posthumous Sales Bump (Sound Affects) [29.Mar.10]
All Hail the Winter Killers (Moving Pixels) [7.Mar.10]
Pitchfork: The Taste Maker (Sound Affects) [3.Feb.10]
Divorce Song: Guyville's Moment of Truth (Sound Affects) [15.Jan.10]
Slipped Disc: A.C. Newman - Get Guilty (Mixed Media) [13.Dec.09]
G.I. Joe A Real American Hero & Transformers (Consuming Consumables) [9.Dec.09]
The End of CDs Is Nowhere in Sight (Sound Affects) [24.Sep.09]
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