Wednesday, November 5 2003
Dead at 33, Bangs has risen, Christ-like, from the pens and keyboards of hundreds or maybe thousands (what feels like millions) of rock scribes from sea to shining sea, all spewing their paltry imitations of Bangs's 'speedflight wordsperm bullshit.'
Monday, November 3 2003
R. Kelly is no Marvin Gaye, nor should he be. But R. Kelly is a Soul Man, who seemingly for lack of any other recourse, has chosen to share his demons with us through his music as so many tortured Soul Men of the past have.
Tuesday, October 28 2003
Smith wrote beautiful, brutally honest and touching music, but his songs were most effective while he was still among the living. In the end, he didn't cheat death; he only cheated us.
Elliott Smith's art was an articulation of his soul -- his 'figurative self', if you prefer -- coming to terms with its inherently, inescapably flawed corporeal frame. This inner turmoil made for great music. And in the end, it probably killed him.
Monday, October 27 2003
Can rock and roll make you sick? And should we want it to? Day four of PopMatters CMJ Festival coverage.
Day Three's coverage of CMJ seeks to find out where the girls are.
Friday, October 24 2003
Like The Streets' Mike Skinner, Dizzee approaches UK Garage with a seriousness that elevates it from dancefloor juice to art. On 'Boy in Da Corner', he uses garage as the jumping off point for an ear-bending journey through the music of fin-de-siecle African diaspora, in much the same way Tricky used UK dance music 10 years ago on 'Maxinquaye'.
More coverage of Day Two, including run-ins with the sensitive side of CMJ.
Strapped for cash? Day two of our CMJ coverage is a lesson in doing the festival on the cheap.
Thursday, October 23 2003
Day One of our coverage of the New York-based new music festival, including pit stops with Travis, the Killers, Menlo Park, and the Prosaics.
Tuesday, October 7 2003
Conceived in the months after the September 11th attacks, Me'shell Ndegeocello's new release 'Comfort Woman' finds the artist reflecting on life, death and the everyday struggles of surviving a world seemingly coming apart at the seams.
Thursday, September 25 2003
PopMatters Music Critic Michael Christopher uncovers the drive that keeps Comes With the Fall going -- DIY style.
Monday, September 15 2003
After all, the man fed on adversity. It fueled his work throughout his career.
Johnny Cash was, to me, as complex as America itself. He wrote songs about bad men, good women, and hard times, but was never seduced by nor succumbed to cynicism, true men of faith are not like that.
Not a great lover or follower of country music -- hey, what could a bunch of twangy bejeweled cowpokes say to me, a snotty punk brat from Manchester, England, right?
Johnny Cash pushed insurgent separatism to the hilt. He cemented his iconoclastic status in 1965 when he showed up wearing all black and a scowl at the usually pastel and buoyant church of county music, the Grand Ole Opry.
What Johnny Cash did on At San Quentin defies belief. He made the angriest, balliest, toughest, most punk rock album of all time.
It would be too easy to call him an everyman, too cliché, too trite. And yet, that is what he was, an everyman, a singer and songwriter who plumbed our souls and made each of us real and alive in his music. Johnny Cash, country icon and rock and roll founder, died Friday of complications from diabetes, leaving behind nearly 50 years of remarkable music and a legacy of innovation.
Thursday, September 11 2003
Independent hip-hop artist Flo Brown chats with PopMatters music critic Felicia Pride on Whateva Comes to Mind, her recently released album.
Tuesday, September 9 2003
Warren Zevon outlived his doctor's diagnosis by several months. Originally, all he claimed he wanted to do was live to see the next James Bond film; instead, he turned 'four months left to live' into an entire year.