Columns > Music

Thursday, June 30 2016

Coulda Been Country: The Allman Brothers Dickey Betts’ Great Southern Songs

The Allman Brothers band receives attention for its southern rock tendencies, but its secret weapon was, for a time, the country inflections brought forth by guitarist Dickey Betts.


Tuesday, June 21 2016

Why Is Opera So Derided in America?

Prokofiev's The Fiery Angel offers everything movie goers seek: debauchery, religious obsession, exorcisms, devilish abuses, graphic sexual assault, and a variety of horrific effects both musical and visual.


Thursday, June 16 2016

Packing Bags and Hittin’ the Road: A Look Back on Music Gatherings of Yore

Remember when Mumford and Sons spent their pre-show hours swinging from tires in a lake crowded with fans?


Wednesday, June 15 2016

Flea-Market Music: On the Glorious Cacophony of The Felice Brothers

Their style is loose, but not without form; cluttered, though sometimes spare; common, but not ordinary; discounted, but not cheap; public, but out-of-the-way; historical, but liable to disappear at any moment.


Tuesday, June 7 2016

Perhaps Prince Really Did Die 4 Us

On what would have been the groundbreaking musician's 58th birthday, a reflection on his final chord.


Monday, June 6 2016

Marrow of Their Spirits: A Reflection on Agalloch

Agalloch regularly melded metaphysical ponderings into its light-and-dark sonic tapestries, yielding a catalog that’s as enticing intellectually as it is musically.


Monday, May 16 2016

Prince: Never Stop Arguing

Prince's life is over but his music is not, and that music was never just about him, and it was never just about me, and it was never just about you.


Friday, May 13 2016

Ralph Alessi: A Trumpet King for 2016

Quietly, brilliantly, Brooklyn-based jazz trumpeter Ralph Alessi is everywhere at once, defining the music with flexibility and freedom.


Tuesday, May 3 2016

Is ‘Madonna: Tears of a Clown’ a Laughing Matter?

In Madonna's bizarre one-off concert in Australia, she proved that she's still willing to push the envelope with a bold artistic statement. But what exactly was she saying?


Monday, April 25 2016

Kanye and Mingus: Gifted, Complicated and Proud of It

Charles Mingus and Kanye West represent an extreme form of the complicated-and-proud-of-it black man, within a society that prefers its black men as uncomplicated and untroubling as possible.


Thursday, April 14 2016

Bottled Out of Eccentricity: A Conversation With Kavus Torabi of Knifeworld

Knifeworld mastermind Kavus Torabi discusses the positive rewiring effects of LSD, Gong's late Daevid Allen, and Knifeworld's newest, Bottled Out of Eden.


Monday, April 4 2016

Time of Absence: Documenting Kanye West’s ‘Life of Pablo’

The Life of Pablo is an ideological attack against the pop institutions that continually try to mystify art and control the artist's identity for profit.


Tuesday, March 8 2016

Corn in the USA: Hee Haw, Buck Owens and You

Whether he wanted it to be or not Hee Haw was the vehicle that imprinted Buck Owens into the minds of millions of music lovers around the globe.


Tuesday, March 1 2016

The Triumphant Emptiness of Snarky Puppy

If an iTunes library on shuffle needed a house band, Snarky Puppy would be it.


Monday, February 29 2016

The Most Unintentionally Terrifying “Love Songs” Ever Written

From Van Halen to Dean Martin, some of the world's most beloved "love" songs are actually hideously sinister when you dig just below the surface.


Tuesday, February 23 2016

What Does Randy Newman Say When He Talks With God?

One of the less celebrated satirists of religion, a study of some of Randy Newman's key songs reveals a subtle subversive at work.


Wednesday, February 17 2016

As Good As Gold: Lio’s Subversive Euro-Pop

In true Euro-pop fashion, Lio's marriage of risqué innuendo and brightly-coloured pop during the '80s resounded fashionably with the French.


Thursday, February 11 2016

Destined for Greatness: A Conversation With Rikard Sjöblom of Beardfish

Beardfish frontman Sjöblom discusses the makings of his latest solo effort, The Unbendable Sleep, as well as the future of Beardfish, Big Big Train, and more.


Wednesday, February 10 2016

When Is Art Beautiful? When Is It Just Boring?

To paraphrase art critic Peter Schjeldahl, beauty is a kind of action and reaction between the work and the viewer, or the listener, or the reader. Beauty happens.


Friday, February 5 2016

Chaos Does Not Mean Despair in Bowie’s Soundscapes

What Bowie's music describes, again and again, is that we were endlessly, relentlessly killing ourselves.


//Mixed media
//Blogs

Authenticity Issues and the New Intimacies

// Marginal Utility

"The social-media companies have largely succeeded in persuading users of their platforms' neutrality. What we fail to see is that these new identities are no less contingent and dictated to us then the ones circumscribed by tradition; only now the constraints are imposed by for-profit companies in explicit service of gain.

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