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Capsule Reviews

Monday, July 7 2014

Collin Herring: Some Knives

Some Knives, Herring's first album in five years, travels an uneasy road and leans into the ruts all the way.


Monday, June 30 2014

My Fictions: Stranger Songs

Topshelf Records continues its foray into 21st century emotive angst with My Fictions’ punishing Stranger Songs.


Friday, June 27 2014

The Vacant Lots: Departure

Departure is an ambitious and brave debut, one that reveals a lot of promise and an awfully big sound for just two players.


The Clientele: Or Thousands of Prizes

The Clientele didn't exactly bring their A-game to this exclusive offer from Merge records. Lucky for us, their B-game is still a good one.


Shook Twins: What We Do

Yup, they really are twins, and they really are named Shook.


The Jones Family Singers: The Spirit Speaks

Vibrant gospel album burns bright at first, then fizzles.


Wednesday, June 25 2014

Candide: Don’t You Go EP

Young hearts run free on New York duo's intriguing analog travelogue.


Panic! at the Disco: Nictotine

Once again, Panic! trade in guitars for keyboards on an EP that features outtakes from their 2013 fourth studio album.


Son Lux: Alternate Worlds EP

Alternate Worlds is yet another EP of remixes or reimagination that fails to make much of a mark.


Tuesday, June 24 2014

City Walls Autumn Falls: Factory

At times reminiscent of Band of Horses, the quieter, acoustic-based songs of the Ozark Mountain Daredevils and the folksy strum of Neil Young, Factory is an astonishingly confident album, and one that should make a name for this band.


Jaro Milko & The Cubalkanics: Cigarros Explosivos!

They need to either knock you dead with skill or else subvert the whole notion of skill.


Saul Conrad: a tyrant and lamb

Saul Conrad's third record is a good, surprising record, and a good lesson in finding power without overt force or volume.


Monday, June 23 2014

Bonnie “Prince” Billy and the Cairo Gang: We Love Our Hole 7”

Oldham and Kelly are seaside in Australia, lounging out two excellent recordings for a new film.


What Moon Things: What Moon Things

If you can get past the amateurish singing, there’s a certain amount of infectiousness going on here that you’ll love if you’re into certain bands of yore.


Color War: It Could Only Be This Way

A boring slog of a dreamy synth-pop record that only comes to life during its occasional ambient instrumental pieces.


Friday, June 20 2014

Reward: Painted Desperation EP

Listening to Reward, pardon the pun, is a richly rewarding experience, and these guys really deserve all the success they can muster.


Monty Alexander: Harlem-Kingston Express Vol. 2

Jazz pianist Monty Alexander returns with the second in a series exploring the music of his home country within a less-than-familiar stylistic construct.


Sibelius-Akatemian Folk Big Band: FBB

When the voices ring together it's a communality fantasia or HOA's magic joy-dream.


Thursday, June 19 2014

Tweak Bird: Any Ol’ Way

Any Ol' Way is a record of promise from a band that has clearly found focus. But its overreliance on tight structures nips too many moments for expansion in the bud.


Ahmed: Dhaalu Raa

When he tenses up for hard rock, he sounds gawky, but relaxation turns him intense.


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