Latest Blog Posts

by Jeff Koch

17 Mar 2014


You’ve almost certainly got a playlist ready and raring to go populated with Flogging Molly, Dropkick Murphys and the Tossers. Good for you! But maybe you could augment your lineup of irish-sounding songs with one from a band that’s, y’know, actually Irish.

by Scott Recker

10 Mar 2014


Slightly more relaxed and groovy than the biting tracks off 2012’s Tramp, Sharon Van Etten recently dropped “Taking Chances”, the first single off her forthcoming album, Are We There?, due out May 27. Sadly and soulfully, “Taking Chances” doesn’t desert her signature dreamy style, but the song has a slick production quality to it and sharp, yet subtle indie-pop sensibilities. It’s a lot less sparse than usual and quite a bit more atmospheric, which is exciting considering Van Etten is skilled at slight tweaks to her distinct sound. She’ll also be touring extensively throughout the next few months.

by George de Stefano

25 Feb 2014


Macklemore and Ryan Lewis established their cred as gay allies with their earnest if clunky “Same Love”. But John Grant’s “Glacier” is a vastly superior take on homophobia and its injuries, hidden and otherwise. The closing track on Grant’s much-acclaimed 2013 album Pale Green Ghosts, “Glacier” is a seven-minute-plus, piano-driven ballad sung by Grant in an intimate, direct-address style that is quietly devastating.

by John M. Tryneski

25 Feb 2014


This year winter has been one of the coldest and snowiest in Chicago’s not-overly tropical history with the third polar vortex of the season currently camping out over the area through at least the end of February. Fortunately, in the middle of this Chiberian ordeal local sextet the Lemons (not to be confused with the early ‘90s Seattle alt-rockers) dropped a debut album that positively radiates toasty mid-summer happiness.

by Scott Recker

25 Feb 2014


After a quick listen, it’s clear Sturgill Simpson has the standard honky-tonk tools: a boozy baritone that recalls Waylon Jennings, the rooted mindset, a powerful, punchy delivery. But, when listening to him at length, it’s apparent there’s so much more to the Kentucky native, who used to front Sunday Valley. These skills and tendencies shine on his new single, “Living the Dream”, a desperate, rhythmic realization with piercing metaphors and layers of brilliant country guitar work. He has a ragged believability and this incredible gift to capture everyday struggle like few others. His forthcoming album, Metamodern Sounds in Country Music, drops on May 18th.

//Mixed media
//Blogs

A Chat with José González at Newport Folk Festival

// Notes from the Road

"José González's sets during Newport Folk Festival weren't on his birthday (that is today) but each looked to be a special intimate performance.

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