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Music
Counterbalance: Soundgarden's 'Superunknown'
In my eyes, indisposed, in disguise as no one knows hides the face of this week's Counterbalance. 281st most acclaimed album of all time, won't you come and wash away the rain? [12.Sep.14]
Timeless Resonance: An Interview with Luluc
By Jennifer Kelly
Australian songwriter Zoë Randall of Luluc has been listening to her favorite albums, over and over, for decades. Her own new one Passerby is so effortlessly lovely that you can likewise imagine yourself putting it on again this year and next year and the one after that. [12.Sep.14]
Pere Ubu: Carnival of Souls
Pere Ubu's 18th album offers their most cohesive and disturbing vision of dystopian America. A carnival of oblique reference points, it's also their best album of the 21st century. [12.Sep.14]
Chris Thile and Edgar Meyer: Bass and Mandolin
Mandolin virtuoso Chris Thile and double bass virtuoso Edgar Meyer meet up for a second time, making music that, unsurprisingly, sounds like it was made for virtuosos. [12.Sep.14]
Tricky: Adrian Thaws
Adrian Thaws is one of Tricky's most successful attempts to achieve reconciliation between the strengths of his established sound, and his need to progress as an artist. [12.Sep.14]
Reviews
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Pere Ubu's 18th album offers their most cohesive and disturbing vision of dystopian America. A carnival of oblique reference points, it's also their best album of the 21st century.
Mandolin virtuoso Chris Thile and double bass virtuoso Edgar Meyer meet up for a second time, making music that, unsurprisingly, sounds like it was made for virtuosos.
A concise, pure and punchy pop history lesson.
Adrian Thaws is one of Tricky's most successful attempts to achieve reconciliation between the strengths of his established sound, and his need to progress as an artist.
It's a fine line between "retro" and "novelty", but no one walks it better than Brian Setzer.
American Hi-Fi is not a group to reshape the way we hear music. They’re simply a good time.
Three of Shostakovich's symphonies sound as scary as they probably did during their premiere, thanks to a unique orchestra and a unique conductor.
From the top on down, the intent of Forever For Now is perfectly clear: fun. This is one big good time broken into 12 melodically succinct, percussively infectious packages.
This is a celebratory affair from start to finish, and constructed in such a way as to put a big grin on your face.
The Man Upstairs is a beguiling diversion for Hitchcock, one devoid of any mystery or humor.
Seemingly on the verge of death not long ago, Vini Reilly re-emerges with a timely, often gorgeous reminder of why he is among the greatest guitarists of his generation.
Sloan changes things by giving each member a side of a double-vinyl record. It works.
Avi Buffalo settle for a sleeker, cleaner set of psychedelic folk on the follow-up to their more compelling 2010 debut.
Forty-plus years on, Afro-beat master Orlando Julius is still gettin' it done.
Any anticipatory pleasure to be derived from the pain detailed on Annabel Dream Reader is numbed by its own flogging tedium.
He tells you about a "Brand New Dance" that’s sweeping the nation. The craze is just getting out of bed, standing up, and confronting death. He's not just being funny
Somebody call 911! Ryan Adams is on fire!
Just when you thought hip-hop couldn't get weirder...
Exile proves that McGrath deserves something more: a rabid following of many devotees who sing along with every pointed word and buy his albums with no reservations.
Rustie continues his go big or go home mission statement, for better and worse.
Its similarities to 2011's Very Best differ only by three songs -- but excising his Rubin-produced songs for some '70s schmaltz will make you say "Play Me" to this comp.
Those that didn’t enjoy Skull Orchard before won’t be won over, but it doesn’t change the fact that those naysayers have conspicuously terrible taste.
Interpol return with confidence on El Pintor, a record that may satisfy even Turn on the Bright Lights devotees.
With Haven’t Got The Blues (Yet), Loudon Wainwright III works to a singing observational comic, heavy on the observations, light on the comedy.
Once you’re finished with this round, you’ll definitely want seconds.
Re-recorded from old snippets, this new Ashrae Fax set is more self-assured than the band's debut, Static Crash!, though you might sometimes miss the nervous energy of that first album.
Soulja Boy's latest offering is a fairly vanilla addition to the trap genre, with few highlights to make it a worthwhile listen.
The main discriminant between a bluff and the worthwhile is quality, and smallgang have plenty of it.
Capsule Reviews
Events
Tori Amos's recent performance at New York City's Beacon Theatre was simply spellbinding and quite possibly one of the best concerts in recent memory. [17.Aug.14]
Mixed Media
News
By Mikael Wood
On Feb. 10, 2013, Kimbra walked onto the Staples Center stage and accepted a Grammy Award from Prince, who added his own… [26.Aug.14]
Features
By Jennifer Kelly
Australian songwriter Zoë Randall of Luluc has been listening to her favorite albums, over and over, for decades. Her own new one Passerby is so effortlessly lovely that you can likewise imagine yourself putting it on again this year and next year and the one after that. [12.Sep.14]
By Josh Antonuccio
Ethan Johns calls upon the ghosts of such British songsmiths as Bert Jansch and Nick Drake, while developing interwoven and metaphorical narratives in the footsteps of Richard Thompson and Bob Dylan. [08.Sep.14]
Columns
Kickin' Up Dust
Has country music lost its capacity for brutal, unshakeable loneliness? Or are we just experiencing some calm before the next, inevitable heartache? [24.Aug.14]
Continental Drift
The music of the Caucasus is powered by national ardour and ritual. All that's needed is an open and willing audience to accept the undisclosed gifts it brings. [20.Aug.14]
From The Blogs
In my eyes, indisposed, in disguise as no one knows hides the face of this week's Counterbalance. 281st most acclaimed album of all time, won't you come and wash away the rain? [12.Sep.14]
DVD Reviews
If you've never been a Devo fan, this DVD will give you all the reason you need to remedy the situation. [09.Sep.14]
The Past Is a Grotesque Animal takes a compelling, 20-year long story, and zips far too quickly through it. [04.Sep.14]
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