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Reviews

Monday, September 15 2014

The New Mastersounds: Therapy

Some of these experiments are more successful than others, but it is that basic uptempo, wah-wah inflected, bass-heavy, organ-choogling funk that makes the strongest impression here.


Friday, September 12 2014

‘The Trip to Bountiful’ Is a Reminder of Why We Go to the Theater

This television version directed by Michael Wilson is lacking in the same of urgency that made the Broadway show such a sensation.


‘What We See When We Read’: Covers, Imagination, and Everything in Between

"When we discuss the feeling of reading we are really talking about the memory of having read," says Peter Mendelsund, "and this memory of reading is a false memory."


More Than Just LOLCats and Finger-Chomping Babies, Memes Are a Window Into Contemporary Culture

Thought not always humorous, memes demonstrate the power of whimsical humour to undermine the legitimacy of the most laboriously manufactured control structures.


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.


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.


Changing Lanes With John Waters

To most, hitchhiking is a terrifying risk taken by the desperate or insane. This makes it a perfect subject for John Waters’ latest book, Carsick.


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.


Various Artists: XL Records - Pay Close Attention

A concise, pure and punchy pop history lesson.


American Hi-Fi: Blood and Lemonade

American Hi-Fi is not a group to reshape the way we hear music. They’re simply a good time.


Brian Setzer: Rockabilly Riot! All Original

It's a fine line between "retro" and "novelty", but no one walks it better than Brian Setzer.


Valery Gergiev and the Mariinsky Orchestra: Shostakovich: Symphonies Nos. 4, 5 & 6

Three of Shostakovich's symphonies sound as scary as they probably did during their premiere, thanks to a unique orchestra and a unique conductor.


LP: Forever For Now

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.


Thursday, September 11 2014

Rich Aucoin: Ephemeral

This is a celebratory affair from start to finish, and constructed in such a way as to put a big grin on your face.


Robyn Hitchcock: The Man Upstairs

The Man Upstairs is a beguiling diversion for Hitchcock, one devoid of any mystery or humor.


Durutti Column: Chronicle XL

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.


Wednesday, September 10 2014

Truth Is an Allusion: “The Wicked and the Divine #3”

Gods as pop stars. It’s a novel concept and one that could crumble under its own weight if not pulled off correctly. But so far, we’ve been treated to a thoughtful exploration of where divine intervention meets celebrity worship.


‘The Girl Who Passed for Normal’ Is a Sagacious Study of the Female Mind

Hugh Fleetwood's eerie tale of deadly symbiotic relationships is rife with Freudian desires and erotic tensions.


‘Night Moves’ Depicts the Blindness and Violence of Ideology

Never once do Night Moves's three lead characters genuinely consider the ramifications of what they're doing. Naturally, they can't foresee their downfall.


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