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by Will Rivitz

22 Aug 2016


Picture Atlantic‘s “Billy Banker” is a song about a vampiric A&R man, chasing after a hapless band in the pursuit of sales, sales, sales. The song’s atmosphere fits this narrative appropriately: nose-thumbing lyrics (“Billy Banker / is a wanker” is the opening line), paranoid guitar, and energetic, sprinting drums and bass. It’s a loud cry against sucking out artistic vision and extracting pure profit, and its frenetic instrumental banking gives that cry nice heft.

by PopMatters Staff

19 Aug 2016


Nathaniel Schwass: Pairing up with XXL Freshman Anderson .Paak, Mac Miller proves time and again that the craft must evolve with the artist. On this new single “Dang!,” Miller teases fans with jazzy preview for his upcoming album, The Divine Feminine. Featuring the crooning, brassy timbre of .Paak’s vocals, Mac and Paak piece together a saccharine ballad to alienated lovers, as Miller raps “Fuck ‘em all, let’s be us, summer’s soft sweetness/ Heartache drunk and hang up/ What a mess I made, sense I make none.” This single is a shining example of Mac’s penchant for surprising fans and gaining new ones, all the while remaining true to his artistic vision and aesthetic pleasure. Mac and .Paak make for a great duo over the acoustic percussion and swooning synths of Pomo’s production, a sure fire summer hit and an excellent tidbit of Mac’s forthcoming release. [8/10]

by PopMatters Staff

19 Aug 2016


Chris Ingalls: The production is gorgeous—smooth, silky beats, blippy keyboards and warm low end—but that Auto-Tune is enough to put me into anaphylactic shock. That’s one of the downsides of modern melodic hip-hop. But there’s no denying that the groove is solid and it really is quite catchy. [7/10]

by PopMatters Staff

19 Aug 2016


Photo: Julian Marshall

Nouvelle Vague are well-known for their bossa nova reinterpretations of ‘80s and ‘90s punk, new wave, and post-punk songs and the French group is back with a new EP, Athol Brose, releasing September 2nd. The EP will include new takes on old classics as well as this remix of Joy Division’s “Love Will Tear Us Apart” from their 2004 self-titled album. This airy Dream Koala remix reenvisions the tune as an ethereal, dreamy, bit of ambient chill-out. Very sleek and trippy.

by PopMatters Staff

19 Aug 2016


Photo: Aaron Biscoe

Matt Fiander: You are unlikely to hear a bed of guitars and thick and loud and unyielding as the one Mike Polizze unleashes on “Fever”, the first track from Purling Hiss’s upcoming record, High Bias. The effect, along with the thundering roll of drums and pit-of-your-stomach low rumble of bass, is bracing, so bracing you might miss the excellent, even catchy rock song that takes shape around all those heady layers. The chorus is big and excellent, not only because it’s catchy but because when Polizze belts out “you’re so misunderstood” you can hear how much he relishes calling bullshit. Like so many great Purling Hiss songs, this one sneaks some sweet melodies into the craggy mix. But this may find Polizze’s project striking its best balance yet between cut-loose noise and tight composition. At the center of the squall that is “Fever”, Purling Hiss unleashes a deeply focused and triumphant defiant, which is exactly what we need right now. [8/10]

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Best of the Moving Pixels Podcast: Further Explorations of the Zero

// Moving Pixels

"We continue our discussion of the early episodes of Kentucky Route Zero by focusing on its third act.

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