Latest Blog Posts

by Allison Taich

16 Dec 2011


Brooklyn collective Superhuman Happiness released a music video for “Needles and Pins”, a track off their latest The Physical EP. “Needles and Pins” expertly combines funky indietronica with orchestrated strings and horns. Pair that with light, airy vocals and you’ve got one cool party number.

by David Smith

15 Dec 2011



cover art

The Strokes

Angles

(RCA)
US: 22 Mar 2011
UK: 21 Mar 2011

Review [20.Mar.2011]

79

The Strokes
Angles


Bands just can’t go around taking five years off these days… in such a fast-paced world, it pretty much amounts to career suicide. Try telling that to the Strokes though. Having single handedly created the template for every new band in the last ten years with debut Is This It, some might say they’ve earned the right to take a few years off if they feel like it, particularly when they return with arguably their best album since that epoch-making release. Angles ticks all the right boxes for where the Strokes should be at in 2011: schizophrenic experimentation, more considered production values and great scuffed-pop singles. And with Julian Casablancas choosing to forfeit sole songwriting duties, it means we now have a more rounded representation of who the Strokes really are. Angles may not be perfect, but it sure as hell makes a good bid for comeback of the year. Welcome back.

by Jeb Inge

15 Dec 2011



cover art

The Pains of Being Pure at Heart

Belong

(Slumberland)
US: 29 Mar 2011
UK: 29 Mar 2011

Review [27.Mar.2011]

The Pains of Being Pure at Heart
Belong


Everything about the Pains of Being Pure at Heart is perfectly indie-hipster, all the way down to their name. While their debut relied heavily on the now-popular tradition of emulating New Wave fundamentals, follow-up Belong found itself more atoned to the early ‘90s. Belong finds the Pains at their most consistent, with the opening three tracks, “Belong”, “Heaven’s Gonna Happen Now”, and “Heart in Your Heartbreak” comprising the band’s most solid run yet. The influences are all over the place, from Smashing Pumpkins, the Jesus and Mary Chain and even Violator-era Depeche Mode. The Pains stick to their “adolescence and naivete” schtick, but producers Flood and Alan Moulder flesh out the group’s sound to match their lyrical daydreaming. There are few points where that daydreaming sounds more akin to whining, but the Pains are getting better at writing pop songs about being young and sort of in love. Belong is proof of that.

by Thomas Britt

14 Dec 2011



cover art

Liturgy

Aesthethica

(Thrill Jockey)
US: 10 May 2011
UK: 11 Apr 2011

Review [12.May.2011]

Liturgy
Aesthethica


There is no music award for getting under listeners’ skin. However, if that honor existed, it would certainly go to Liturgy for Aesthetica, the band’s follow-up to 2009’s Renihilation. Band leader Hunter Hunt-Hendrix catches endless Internet commenter grief for the lofty language he uses to describe the black metal group’s “transcendental” aims. His manifesto posits redemption and affirmation as philosophical and musical foundations within a nihilistic subgenre that rarely lets any light in. Yet Aesthetica‘s power lies not only in its ability to reveal the insecurities of listeners who would rather remain earthbound and hopeless; this is an album that completely supports the claims that preceded it. There is illimitable energy and life in these riffs and in the truly astonishing work of drummer Greg Fox, who recently left the band. Aesthetica houses some of the most uncanny sonic experimentation I’ve heard in years—at once, both virtuosic in its traditional metal musicianship and uplifting as poignant compositions of sacred minimalism. 2011 has been a good year for the genre of American Black Metal, and Liturgy’s Aesthetica is by far its crowning achievement.

by Will Layman

14 Dec 2011



cover art

Tedeschi Trucks Band

Revelator

(Sony Masterworks)
US: 7 Jun 2011
UK: 8 Jun 2011

Review [15.Jun.2011]

Tedeschi Trucks Band
Revelator


Revelator is a joy. A perfect blend of songcraft and crack band playing, it makes you wonder why this wife/husband team took so long to come together as one. Singer Susan Tedeschi’s six-album career has been terrific, but just one star away from stellar. And the Derek Trucks Band had a tendency, perhaps, to feel too much like the Allman Brothers or too much like a “Man, you’ve gotta hear ‘em live” band. This true collaboration brings it all together as a nuanced gumbo that includes dashes of tasty organ, funked-out horn parts, gospel-driven background vocals, and always a burbling soul groove. Tedeschi sells each song with both warmth and open-throated wailing, while Trucks’s slide guitar playing carefully establishes the atmosphere and cries in solo features. A few tracks—“Midnight in Harlem”, “Bound for Glory” and “Until You Remember”—ache to draw your ears again and again.

//Mixed media
//Blogs

Unexpected Deaths and Hideous Trousers in 'Kamikaze 89'

// Short Ends and Leader

"Rainer Werner Fassbinder is the whole show.

READ the article