The Amazing Pudding
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10 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

Pollard & Co. Prove That Showmanship & Indie Rock Can Coexist In today’s world of indie rock, you could probably say it is rare

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9 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

Before the Altar of Tori Amos Quite suddenly, the house lights went out. The crowd was ecstatic in anticipation, wildly screaming and shrieking at the

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9 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

	The Clarks: The Clarks Live

Despite an intensely loyal and sizable local fan base, Pittsburgh based rockers The Clarks remain one of America’s best kept musical secrets. But as

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	Various Artists (mixed by Slipmatt): Speed Limit 140 BPM+: The New Era

I haven’t deejayed since the late ‘80s, when a kid named Sam Donaldson (no relation) and I busted it up for my little brother’

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        Various Artists: Hidden Beach Recordings Presents: Unwrapped Vol. 1

Hip-hop has been mistaken for many things and it is unlikely that hip-hop, even in its most commercial forms, has ever been mistaken for “smooooove”

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	Various Artists: Blunted 3

Here we are again. Downtempo time. Trip hop as it was once known. Dubby beats, B movie dialogue, Old School scratching, synthesized soundscapes, a little

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        Various Artists: If I Had a Song: The Songs of Pete Seeger, Vol. 2

Some may find them merely diverting melodies. Others may find them incitements to Red revolution. And who will say if either or both is wrong?

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	:Wumpscut:: Wreath of Barbs

As far as world music goes, Germany never gets a fair hearing, does it? All of my acquaintances who dig “world music” gush relentlessly about,

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8 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

	Tall Paul: Mixed Live

It’s no secret that Moonshine Records has long been a label to look toward for cutting edge techno and electronica albums and DJ mixes.

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8 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

        The Timeout Drawer: A Difficult Future

Completely without vocals, The Timeout Drawer finds ways to make its variety of instruments and synthesizers speak. In this abstract world, The Timeout Drawer is

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	Sex Pistols: There Is No Future

The silver jubilee of punk has recently prompted PopMatters to put together an excellent collection of essays on punk rock in its various guises during

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8 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

        Soulstice: Mixed Illusions

Musical talent must run thickly through the veins of the Rene siblings. Gabriel and Gina Rene, along with Andy Caldwell and turntablist Mei-Lwun Yee, form

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	Bubba Sparxxx: Dark Days, Bright Nights

Neither Eminem nor Bubba Sparxxx actually raise that many real questions -- except about the importance of image and marketing in what is supposed to the form that represents the authentic voice of Now.

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        The Soundtrack of  Our Lives: Behind the Music

Ah, Sweden. Home of high taxes, red candy fish, universal healthcare, Bergman, and heavy drinking. Every year my high school would host two Swedish students—

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	The Soundtrack of Our Lives: Welcome to the Infant Freebase

First, I’d like to devote a little time to talking about schizophrenia. There are those who toss the word around often, especially those whachamacalit

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	Rae & Christian: Anotherlatenight

Manchester is the Madonna of music towns—brilliant, mercurial, by turns trend-chasing and trend-setting, but always managing to come up with something startling and relevant

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8 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

	The Rembrandts: Lost Together

If it weren’t for their largely clean-cut image, the Rembrandts would make a good subject for a movie. Their career has progressed as if

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	Kid Ramos: Greasy Kid Stuff

If you missed this one last fall, you still have time to catch up with one of the best blues records of 2001. A 17-track “blues

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        Jonathan Richman: Her Mystery Not of High Heels and Eye Shadow

For 25-plus years now, Jonathan Richman has been expressing love through his songs. He’s in love with people, places and things, with smells, sights

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        Leona Naess: I Tried to Rock You But You Only Roll

The extent to which you will enjoy this album depends in great part on your reaction to writing such as this selection from the liner

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8 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

        The Lilac Time: lilac6

Thank goodness for the double wonders of Stephen Duffy’s midlife crisis and his creative procrastination. Much has happened since 1999 and the critically acclaimed Lilac

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8 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

	Half-handed Cloud: Learning About Your Scale

The very idea of threading Christian messages into pop music that we’re free to buy or ignore still bugs enough believers and non-believers to

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8 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

	The Helio Sequence: Young Effectuals

Here’s my best case against the pompous crust that is known as Radiohead. I ask myself from time to time if people would actually

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8 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

	Kelly Hogan: Because It Feel Good

In the post-Celine Dion universe, women with big, booming voices tend to be viewed with suspicion. It’s like how no one wants to wear

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8 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

	Freeloader: Custom/10

The guys in Freeloader obviously have to know how much they sound just like the Stones on a couple of their songs here. And that’

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8 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

	Dead Red Sea: Birds

Dully self-indulgent, Dead Red Sea seems to be going through the motions on Birds. With its uninspired basement rock, Dead Red Sea is that band

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8 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

	Laura Dawn: Believer

Alongside the edgy girls of Elastica, Garbage and The Cranberries, and the feel-good sounds of girls like Emm Gryner, Lisa Loeb, and Shawn Colvin is

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8 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

	Death Cab for Cutie: The Photo Album

Death Cab for Cutie’s songs live in a tiny, claustrophobic, brilliant space. Every sound matters. Ben Gibbard massages every word he sings, exacting the

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	Guy Clark, Steve Earle and Townes Van Zandt: Together at the Bluebird Café

Could this be a win-win-win situation, a trio of the finest Texas songwriters taking turns strumming their tunes in a casual sitting? This collection, the

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Beachwood Sparks: Once We Were Trees

Beachwood Sparks is a California band; it is the Byrds and the Beach Boys, Love and Buffalo Springfield, the Minutemen and Rank and File. Country-rock or alt-country might be the easiest tags to hang round the band's neck, but it doesn't follow the rules of that genre or any other, it offers more than any pigeonhole could hold.

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8 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

Aveo is a band that doesn’t know quite who it wants to be. At times, it shares the quiet adolescent misery of bands like

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8 Oct 2001 // 12:00 AM

7 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

For a band that has been through so much in its 10 year lifespan, it is a touch surprising to see the Rev saunter onto the

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7 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

Seek a gear show for those in the know? Go hear Fab Faux! One of my few regrets in life is not having attended a

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7 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

Stars of the Lid: The Tired Sounds of Stars of the Lid

It tires you out, makes you feel like you just awakened from either a week-long nap or a coma, as you tend to lose track of time when attempting to sit through it all.

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        Various Artists: Listen to What the Man Said: Popular Artists Pay Tribute to the Music of Pa

 Various Artists Coming Up: Independent Artists Pay Tribute to the Music of Paul McCartney(Oglio)US release date: 30 October 2001 by Jason Damas various-mccartneytributes.jpg :.

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4 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

“It’s not up to you”: or Ethics According to Björk It’s rare when a pop star is also a prophet. The awesomeness

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4 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

At age 26, Ryan Adams has already earned enough praise and criticism to last a career. When he was just 20 years old, Adams’ band Whiskeytown was

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	Syd Barrett: The Best of Syd Barrett: Wouldn’t You Miss Me?

If buying a Syd Barrett CD is our electronic equivalent of paying to watch the crazies, what sort of vicarious experience do we hope to get for our $12.99? Whatever we see in Syd probably reveals more about our own delusions than about his.

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1 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

Scrubs

While J.D. is running from pages and hiding in closets, Turk 'is learning by doing,' cutting, poking, and defibrillating with gusto.

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1 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

	Various Artists: Bare Essentials Vol. 1

Rhythm may well be a dancer (serious like cancer, as Snap! taught us all in ‘92) but away from the club, what seemed like an electrifying

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1 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

        Violet Indiana: Special

I reviewed Violet Indiana’s Roulette album for PopMatters earlier this year. In that review, I praised Robin Guthrie’s delicate, artful guitars and Siobhan

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1 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

	Steve Tyrell: Standard Time

Before 1991, Steve Tyrell was known to just a handful of cognoscenti as the man who put BJ Thomas on the map by producing his version

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1 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

	Ray Romano: Live at Carnegie Hall

Great comedy albums are in short supply these days, which is to be expected. After all, great comedians are equally rare. There was a stretch

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        Keith Jarrett / Gary Peacock / Jack DeJohnette: Inside Out

You’d think Keith Jarrett had something to prove. Each release since a bout with chronic fatigue syndrome sidelined him for three years in the

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	The Gipsy Kings: Somos Gitanos

It’s been 15 years since the Gipsy Kings came on to the world music scene with their multinational take on traditional flamenco music. The trick

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1 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

	Garbage: Beautifulgarbage

Garbage is back. Cue the fanfare. Wait . . . not so fast, junior. Seems that Shirley Manson and pals have upset a few of the old diehards

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1 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

Four Tet: Pause

Electronic music is a funny medium. Purists balk at it, claiming there’s no talent required when composing with a bank of synths, computers, and

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1 Oct 2001 // 3:00 PM

	DJ Irene: Global Housediva 2:  Live in Ibiza

This ain’t no ear candy. The pump, the bump, the funky, freaky beats are going to get you, whether you like it or not.

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	Call and Response: self-titled

Even if you're a die-hard Slipknot fan and you can't stand anything with keyboards or women, you'll have to admit that Call and Response make flawless pop.

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30 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

Béla Fleck: Perpetual Motion

Perpetual Motion is Fleck’s latest project, a daring foray into Baroque, Classical and Romantic art music.

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28 Sep 2001 // 12:00 AM

Ghetto Love: Talking About Dave Hollister and Jaheim

What makes singers Dave Hollister and Jaheim so refreshing is that while they are street-slick they are also vulnerable and accessible.

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What follows is less a review than a personal narrative. Maybe a journalistic recap of Burning Man is possible, but to me it misses the point. It's a participatory event, and everyone's experience of it is extremely different.

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27 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

Needless to say, these are serious times. There is little place for irony. There is even less place for facile rock and roll rebellion. Enter

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	Tess Wiley: Rainy Day Assembly

Tess Wiley began her music career in earnest seven years ago as a member of Sixpence None the Richer. Not to be confused with tow-headed

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27 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

	Now It’s Overhead: self-titled

Enough of this Indian summer, I need winter now. Not because of a masochistic obsession with extreme snow sports or a romantic notion about hot

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A Tribute to Heroes', why I was glad to see that she looked less frazzled than I expected.

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27 Sep 2001 // 12:00 AM

Following the turmoil felt all across the United States after the events of September 11, 2001, Clear Channel Communications announced a list of songs that are deemed 'questionable' in the wake of terrorist attacks and a move towards war . . . And this sensitivity, it seems, means that anything that may cause listeners to think about the crisis at all is to be avoided.

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26 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

With his 1994 eponymous debut, Keb’ Mo’, the Los Angeles-native also known as Kevin Moore let loose with an album full of solid songwriting and extraordinary

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	Hilmar Orn Hilmarsson & Sigur Rós: Angels of the Universe

Sigur Rós fans take note: although the Icelandic art-rockers get prominent billing on this film soundtrack, they contribute only two songs. The bulk of

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	Wayne Escoffery: Times Change

In the awkward divide that has built up between the Burns-Crouch-Marsalis camp and the anti-Burnsites in the past year, any young artist who shows anything

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	Dear John Letters: Rewriting the Wrongs

Okay, right off the bat, let’s acknowledge the Paul McCartney influence here. Matt Nichols of KEXP radio in Seattle said of Rewriting the Wrongs

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        The Strokes: Is This It

The Strokes have a great sound, and the album is lots of fun. But they are not the saviors of rock 'n' roll, nor are they even remotely cool.

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25 Sep 2001 // 12:00 AM

This summer marks the fiftieth anniversary of J.D. Salinger's classic novel of adolescence adrift, 'The Catcher in the Rye'. Rob Maitra, 'PopMatters' critic and high-school teacher, brings us a report from the field that confirms that, even after half a century, Holden Caulfield is still very much alive -- and kicking.

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ReDotPop -- Ashita ga aru sa.

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24 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

The Big Music is back. Now Mike Scott calls it “sonic rock” (there is no flesh-and-blood saxophonist these days) as he has come full circle

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24 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

        Various Artists: @ Home: @ Sunrise / @ Home: @ Sunset

With enough chill-out compilations out there to fill a giant-sized bargain bin, it’s going to take a really good album to impress me. As

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24 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

	Various Artists: Timeless: Hank Williams Tribute

The range of subjects of tribute albums is vast: everyone from the Beatles to Elvis, Cole Porter to Leonard Cohen, Suzanne Vega to Black Sabbath,

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24 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

	Woven: EPrime

Woven is probably an appropriate name for this band. It does, indeed, weave together a few different styles of music to create something that is

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24 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

        Loudon Wainwright III: Last Man on Earth

Whether being hailed as the “new Bob Dylan” (early in his career) or better known (now) as the father of Rufus Wainwright, singer-songwriter Loudon Wainwright

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	Will.i.am: Lost Change

BBE have chosen this year, not one that will be remembered for its hip-hop classics, to launch their would-be-definitive Beatmasters series. BBE collections carry a

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	The Verve Pipe: Underneath

The Verve Pipe, though, seem to be made of sterner stuff. Teaming with producer Adam Schlesinger (of Fountains of Wayne), the group has effectively reinvented/

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	Suzanne Vega: Songs in Red and Gray

Unlike Suzanne Vega’s previous albums, Songs in Red and Gray comes with a lot of public baggage. Since 1996’s wonderful Nine Objects of Desire,

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24 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

	Transient: The Conceptual World Is Losing Its Grip

A common misconception about electronic based music is that if it isn’t being played in a dance club with a couple hundred sweaty bodies

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24 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

	Tears for Fears: Shout: The Very Best of Tears for Fears

“Great art, whether it’s music or not, cannot be appreciated without effort. The trick is not to be passive.” —Roland Orzabal, chief songwriter, singer

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24 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

        Billy Bob Thornton: Private Radio

The Starlight Lounge is a familiar archetype in the American imagination—a poorly lit bar with red velvet-textured wallpaper, where the stale air is thick

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24 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

        Tenacious D: self-titled

Man, it is finally here! The long-awaited, most triumphant release of what could possibly be the most important album of the year! Nay, the decade!

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        Spiritualized: Let It Come Down

The personal nature of these songs is what really sets 'Let It Come Down' apart from anything Spiritualized has done before. It's as though J. Spaceman has realized that once you're in deep outer-space, the only way to escape is to come back home.

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	The Soul Brothers: The Rough Guide to the Soul Brothers

It’s kind of a legend, at least in pop music terms. Paul Simon is having the third or fourth of his mid-life crises, driving

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24 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

	Sugarbomb: Bully

Try for a second to imagine guitar-based pop as commercially viable again. Imagine for a second that major record labels, y’know, those Snake Oil

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24 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

	Stars: The Comeback EP

Stars is a four-piece electronic pop band currently based in Montreal. At the Darla records site, Stars vocalist Torquill Campbell describes their last CD, the

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        Soulstance: Truth, Simplicity and Love

Italian cool meets Bossa Nova with a little touch of jazz-house. Cinecitta soundtracks get the Jazzanova treatment. Bebel Gilberto goes Abstract Lounge. Any of the

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24 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

        Suicide Machines: Steal This Record

Am I listening to the right CD? I’ve had to check at least twice, but yep, there it is on the sleeve—this is

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	Matthew Ryan: Concussion

If you’ve read Rick Bragg’s memoir All Over but the Shoutin’, it’s impossible to hear a song like Matthew Ryan’s “Night

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24 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

        Rambient: So Many Worlds

Rock and electronic music have a very shaky relationship. Early on in their career, the Chemical Brothers put big beat on the map and successfully

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        The O’Jays: For the Love

It has been a good year for soul music. Not only have the neo/nu coterie all dropped solid releases but, for the first time

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24 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

        Naked Music NYC: Reconstructed Soul

It’s not hard to spot a Naked Music head in a crowd of house aficionados—there’s something about the way they walk, the

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24 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

	Marathon: The Year of You

Atlanta rockers Marathon may consist of the quartet of Mike Roberts, Chuck Carrier, Tim Turnbow and Dan Morris, but with vocalist Carrier writing every song

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        The Microphones: The Glow, pt. 2

That act of disrupting, of throwing off expectations, is key to the Microphones’ music. It’s even more central to the songs’ musical constructions than

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	Los Straitjackets: Sing Along with Los Straitjackets

Surf Wrestlers Attack AM Standards! To be truthful, it’s hard to listen to anything these days. There’s so much instability in the world

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24 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

	Lifestyle: Frontier

Close. Very close. The first couple songs on this EP are a lot like having that girl you had a crush on all through your

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	Joe Jackson: The Best of Joe Jackson: The Millennium Collection

In 1979 I was in high school and a convert to the music that was quickly becoming dubbed “new wave”. Having already cut my teeth on

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24 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

	The Handsome Family: Twilight

As I was thumbing through the liner notes to the Handsome Family’s new album Twilight, I came across the following two sentences. “I don’

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	Jim Hall: Jim Hall and Basses

A great idea this. Take Jim Hall, the quiet experimentalist of the jazz guitar, and a man with almost 50 years of thoughtful and innovative work

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	Coleman Hawkins: The Hawk in Hi Fi

If you understand and appreciate the importance of Coleman Hawkins to the jazz world, you probably already have this disc. The man basically invented the

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	Charlie Hunter: Songs from the Analog Playground

'Songs from the Analog Playground' may horrify some in the jazz world and will undoubtedly be deemed too far out for Urban radio. What greater recommendation than that do you need?"

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24 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

	Handsome Devil: Love and Kisses from the Underground

Perhaps it was a mere technical fault, or maybe a bad omen, but this debut album by Orange County natives Handsome Devil just would not

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24 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

	The Four Corners: Say You’re a Scream

You don’t need a wittily bespectacled comp. lit. grad. student or a fully qualified theorist of the postmodern condition to tell you that nostalgia’

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24 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

	Jay Farrar: Sebastopol

For those who were following the plot, it came as no surprise that nothing has been heard from Jay Farrar for the past three years.

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24 Sep 2001 // 3:00 PM

	The Drive-by Truckers: Southern Rock Opera

Lynyrd Skynyrd's music has long been placed in a second-class category; now, the Drive-by Truckers are reclaiming its status as art while exploring 'the duality of the South'.

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More Recent Features
//Mixed media
//Blogs

Beyoncé and When Music Writing Becomes Activism

// Sound Affects

"The overall response to Beyoncé's "Formation" has been startlingly positive, but mostly for reasons attached to political agendas. It's time to investigate this trend.

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