Call for Essays About Any Aspect of Popular Culture, Present or Past


Thursday, November 28 2002

Badly Drawn Boy

There are certain things you come to expect at a rock and roll concert. Chances are, the band is going to mention that your hometown

Monday, November 25 2002

Jaheim: Still Ghetto

The common thinking has always been that “thugs” are somehow outside of the mainstream of the places and spaces where they prey. Real thugs don’

Sunday, November 24 2002

Radar Brothers: And the Surrounding Mountains

Los Angeles, California, the life-in-the-fast-lane hotbed of culture that houses the Slash-less, plastic surgery-impaired reincarnation of Guns ‘n’ Roses, the pseudo-swank celebrity-lined rows cheering basketball’

Catherine Irwin: Cut Yourself a Switch

Catherine Irwin may benefit from the current mainstream appreciation of bluegrass music fueled by the O Brother, Where Art Thou? soundtrack, but she’s certainly

Fontanelle: Style Drift

I bet I might have liked Fontanelle in college. Their comfortably experimental vibe is a none- too-dangerous concoction of influences from Stereolab to Curtis Mayfield,

Epicycle: Swirl

Sometimes you need to hear something different. In a world overpopulated with soundalike bands that refuse to make any demands on a listener, and radio

All-Time Quarterback: self-titled

Bellingham, Washington, may not initially seem the type of place one would associate with being a hotbed of indie-pop. Twenty minutes south of the Canadian

The Agenda: Start the Panic

In 1996 there was a band called The Delta 72 who released a little known album The R&B of Membership on Touch & Go Records.

Thursday, November 7 2002

Various Artists: Antifolk Vol. 1

For all the talk about the “New York scene” these days, the truth is that there are actually many scenes going on all at the

Various Artists: Afrotech / Dream Therapy / Dub Selector 2 / Nordic Exposure

The Dating Game, Quango Style I’m sitting in my chair with four new Quango comps before me. I know I have to choose one

The Streets: Original Pirate Material

And if Skinner isn’t an innovator, he is at least one of the most endearing musical personalities to come along in many years: he’s tough but vulnerable, slangy but somehow correct, down with the homeys but strangely removed from it all.

Run-DMC: Greatest Hits

The memory is still quite vivid—I was the last one in the prom night limo, traveling across Queen Blvd. en route to the bridge

Nas: Lost Tapes

When you’re hot, you’re hot. After swimming in commercial mediocrity for years, Nas continues to ride the wave of success generated by a

Thelonious Monk: Monk’s Dream / Monk. / At Newport 1963 & 1965

By the time Thelonious Monk appeared on the cover of Time Magazine in 1964, anointed as the cool weird slightly scary jazzbo that it was okay

Miguel Migs: Colorful You

It’s been a great year for San Francisco’s Naked Music. Actually, every year in the house label’s scant four-year existence has been

Yo-Yo Ma: Bach / Cello Suites Nos. 1, 5 & 6

The love of one’s country is a splendid thing. But why should love stop at the border? —Pablo Casals Recorded in a digital studio

Charles Lloyd: Lift Every Voice

Charles Lloyd was booked to play at The Blue Note in New York City during the week of September 11. Though his performances were postponed until

Imperial Teen: Live at Maxwell’s

Jonathan looks at me sincerely, waiting for my answer. A friend’s band will be opening for Imperial Teen, and we talk about how much

Ikara Colt: Chat and Business

Most prominent among Ikara Colt’s influences are Sonic Youth and Joy Division. Couple that druggy, growling aesthetic with the vim and vigor of a

Gin Blossoms: New Miserable Experience (Deluxe Edition)

Okay, right off the bat, let’s acknowledge that it’s just not cool to like the Gin Blossoms. They were one of those bands

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