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Monday, February 23 2015

DMX: Redemption of the Beast

This year is barely eight weeks old, but Redemption of the Beast will likely be the worst rap album of the year.


Friday, February 20 2015

In ‘McFarland, USA’, Sports Victory Vanquishes Prejudice

Although the "Great White Hope" overtones are troubling, McFarland, USA trumps the racism of its antagonists with sports team-building.


‘Still Alice’ Is the Story of a Mind in Search for Words and Self

Julianne Moore's luminous performance as a woman with early onset Alzheimer's reveals how the disease makes it difficult to find oneself.


‘Hot Tub Time Machine 2’ Is an Exercise in Stunted Scatology

Hot Tub Time Machine 2 will be clever only to those who never outgrew hearing their first dirty joke at summer camp.


‘Dying Light’: The Terror and Triumph of Nightfall

The zombies here aren't monsters, they're just another kind of terrorist.


‘The Palm Beach Story’ and the Comedy of Patriarchy

In pure madcap fashion, Preston Sturges' wartime comedy depicts just how absurd the constraints on women are in a patriarchal society.


Sumac: The Deal

The latest project by metal titan Aaron Turner may be rough around the edges, but it's a thrilling enough ride to merit ignoring the bumps.


Phosphorescent: Live at the Music Hall

A sprawling, hits-heavy live album reminiscent of classic rock’s golden era, Phosphorescent’s Live at the Music Hall serves as a near-perfect introduction to this exceptional band.


JD McPherson: Let the Good Times Roll

Imagine rockabilly with punk overtones and you have this album, a foot-stomping, ass-shaking thing of beauty.


Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver: In Session

Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver show how it's done with traditional bluegrass anthems on In Session.


Title Fight: Hyperview

Hyperview, the third studio album by the punk outfit Title Fight, finds the band wandering in a more melodious direction, for better or worse.


Thursday, February 19 2015

Mauritania’s First Academy Award Nominee ‘Timbuktu’ Examines Missing Motives

Timbuktu shows how the most intense religious conflicts are often fought without much reason or thought.


‘The Haunting of Black Wood’ Contains No Haunting Whatsoever

The issue with this ostensible haunting in Black Wood is not a paucity of dollars in the budget, but rather of tension, drama, and ideas.


Krill: A Distant Fist Unclenching

Boston's Krill gives us a healthy dose of existentialist objectivity masquerading in post-punk grit -- and maybe one of the most singular albums we'll see this year.


The Juliana Hatfield Three: Whatever, My Love

The first Juliana Hatfield Three album in over 21 years suggests a timelessness, a pop sensibility that forgets scene in favor of hitting you with pure hooks in the here and now.


Carl Barat and the Jackals: Let It Reign

Carl Barat, of Libertines and Dirty Pretty Things fame, blazes a furious, punk-inflected trail with a new band of sidemen.


Championing the Middle Ages as Innovative

Johannes Fried's erudite study traces our evolution towards reason, worldwide exploration, and rational procedures to a dynamic medieval period.


Future & Zaytoven: Beast Mode

By teaming up with one of Atlanta hip-hop's biggest cult heroes and trimming all the fat, Future has not only put out his definitive album, but perhaps one of 2015's as well.


Half Japanese: Volume 2: 1987-1989

Half Japanese's second three-album set of reissues presents the band's unique perspective on punk, blues and rock 'n' roll, proving they knew how to do it all, or, at the very least, knew how to fake it.


The Thompson Family: Family

What do you do if your calling is the same as your parents’ vocation, and they are famously good at it?


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