Recent Features
Cathartic Nights and Sunny Days: An Interview with Jeremy Enigk

For Enigk, the singer-songwriter behind Sunny Day Real Estate and the Fire Theft, creative inspiration strikes when most others are asleep.

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Celtic Soul Rebel: Talking to the Dentist About Poetry

Shane MacGowan recorded five albums with the Pogues. As the reformed band sets out on its most ambitious tour since 1991, and Rhino Records releases expanded and remastered versions of all five, we take the opportunity to review the rise and fall of the Pogues.

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His Vinyl Weighs a Ton: An Interview with Cut Chemist

Owner of over 30,000 records, staunch defender of Star Wars, and composer of a new solo album, Cut Chemist brings the fun(k).

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Bad Riddance to Good Rubbish: A Sort-of Tribute to CBGB’s

New York's punk club doors are wrenched closed to the sound of metal scraping on concrete. Phillips gives a hurt-so-good account of one of its final shows with Bad Brains.

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Ready for Primetime: An Interview With Go Set Go’s Mike TV

"The kind of people that seem to gravitate towards our music kind of get the humor and get the fact that, while it's humorous, it's also kind of deadly serious."

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“My Tastes Don’t Evolve; They Broaden”: An Interview with Robert Christgau

At a transitional moment in his career, one of pop music's best-known and most-respected critics talks about the changes in culture, academia, and journalism.

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15 Oct 2006 // 11:00 PM

The Triumph of Musical Tourists

Under the name Beirut, Zach Condon released an album of Balkan-style songs he recorded in his bedroom and became an Internet-driven sensation. Though his music gestures nostalgically toward a gypsy old world, Condon’s casual appropriations suggest something much grimmer for the future.

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Just Making Records: An Interview with Portastatic

Mac McCaughan creates string charts and listens to tropicalia while running Merge Records, and he doesn't mind if you haven't listened to Superchunk.

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The Profound Consolation: The Use of Bach’s Music in the Films of Ingmar Bergman (Part 1)

In Bergman's films, Bach's music functions to give access to a rarified atmosphere of revelation and emotional depth; it reveals something previously inaccessible within a character.

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Waylon Jennings, Jukebox Hero

The Waylon Jennings boxset Nashville Rebel gives reason to consider Jennings as not just a country-music outlaw, but a Wurlitzer Prize winner, whose voice from a jukebox can erase all the pain in the world just by giving voice to it.

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Perpetual Motion: An Interview with Akron/Family

With its third album in two years Akron/Family takes another snapshot of its continuously evolving musical journey. Meek Warrior's free jazz freak outs may surprise some fans, but bass player Miles Seaton shrugs it off, saying, 'We just want to keep capturing wherever we are along the way.'

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8 Oct 2006 // 11:00 PM

The Disappearing Designer: An Interview with Joan of Arc

Tim Kinsella, the musician-filmmaker- performance-poet- burlesque dancer behind Joan of Arc claims an irony-free zone while explaining his process of unintentional creation. PopMatters giggles nervously.

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Blind Guardian’s Twisted Myths

For Hansi Kürsch, lead singer of Germany's Blind Guardian, there's no Justin Hawkins flash, no DragonForce pub chants, no hipster-pandering irony. If he's going to sing about faeries and orcs, he's going to do so and mean every damned outlandish lyric.

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In for the Long Haul: An Interview with The Long Winters’ John Roderick

The singer-songwriter discusses fame, failure, and frequent flier miles, and explains why he's glad it took him this long to get this far.

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When Monkeying Around Becomes Serious Business

More of the Monkees lingered at number one on the Billboard chart for 18 weeks in 1967, later confirmed as the third best-selling LP of the '60s (a higher ranking than any Beatles album), and by some measures the 12th best-selling of all time.

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Unsung Heroes: The Band of Extraordinary Women

Huff fantasizes about wielding Diddy-like power to create a supergroup of underrated, under-the-radar female musicians. Danity Kane, eat your heart out.

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Sugar Hill Records: 25 Years and Going Strong

Sugar Hill's early recordings possessed an aural purity that met people's hunger for authenticity and also seemed fresh and new. There was something honest about the sounds of the banjo, dobro, fiddle, and mandolin, and the way they mixed together.

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28 Sep 2006 // 11:00 PM

Gaining on the Green Man: A Road Odyssey in Four Acts

In an epic cross-hemisphere trek, writer Ben Oswest treads the long road between Cape Town and Wales to consummate a 13-year, 20,000-mile long-distance love affair with the Silver Jews.

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26 Sep 2006 // 11:00 PM

It Shall Be Released

Rubenstein looks back at the release of a number of highly anticipated albums to contrast his opinions then and now. How much does personal expectation factor into our ultimate enjoyment of music?

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Weather Report: Partly Sunny, Then Showers—Looking Back on the Fusion Supergroup

A new box set encapsulating the jazz group's career causes our jazz critic to reassess his love-hate relationship with Weather Report.

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More Recent Features
//Mixed media

The Hills Are Alive, But Nobody Else Is in 'The Happiness of the Katakuris'

// Short Ends and Leader

"Happiness of the Katakuris is one of Takashi Miike's oddest movies, and that's saying something.

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