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


Saturday, December 31 1994

The Music Tapes, 1st Imaginary Symphony for Nomad

As if the Elephant Six family of artists wasn’t quirky enough, here comes the quirkiest of them all. For those who don’t know,

Curtis Mayfield & The Impressions: The Best Of - The Millennium Collection

When ‘60s soul acts like The Four Tops and The Temptations were tearing up the charts they relied on great songwriting teams such as Holland/

Christy McWilson: The Lucky One

Flashback. I had a really good flashback with the first Christy McWilson song I’ve ever heard. I went back in time to how I

Mustard Plug, Pray For Mojo

Pray For Mojo is the third full length release from the Grand Rapids, Michigan ska band Mustard Plug. Recently it seems that ska has been

Mephisto Odyssey: The Lift EP

To begin with, I would just like to note that in the press release for Mephisto Odyssey, their music is described as being “jazz-funk for

    Shawn Mullins: Beneath the Velvet Sun

Shawn Mullins may be the same person deep down inside after his major label debut Soul’s Core but he has matured both as a

    Magnétophone: I Guess Sometimes I Need to be Reminded of How Much You Love Me

I approached this record with very few preconceived notions, except for thinking that the title I Guess Sometimes I Need to be Reminded of How

Christian McBride Band: Sci-Fi

Christian McBride first came to prominence as one of the generation of “Young Lions” that emerged in the late 1980s and the early 1990s. McBride,

Marshall Tucker Band: Face Down in the Blues

This may seem pedantic, I’m afraid, but I am hardly more prepared to call this band “Marshall Tucker” than I am to call a

Reba McEntire: Secret of Giving

This Christmas album almost redeems “I Saw Mama Kissing Santa Claus” (Reba doesn’t sing it cute) and features about the slammingest version of “Up

Gerry Mulligan and the Concert Jazz Big Band featuring Zoot Sims: 1960 Zurich

First some context. Aside from being best known in jazz circles as the only major jazz artist to play baritone saxophone, Gerry Mulligan (1927-1996) had

The Munros, Scottish Moods

There should be a rule against including both “Amazing Grace” and “Auld Lang Syne” on any album—either one would be almost unbearable, but having

    Mabulu: Karimbo

Mozambique has witnessed more than its fair share of suffering in the quarter century since it won independence from Portugal. A truly crippling civil war,

    Michael McDermott: Last Chance Lounge

Maybe the more appropriate title for this album would be “Second Chance Lounge,” since Michael McDermott was a casualty of the 1990s major label hijinks.

The Modernist: Explosion

Like its monochromatic cover art, The Modernist’s Explosion is a balanced composition of form and tone. The incendiary title belies Jörg Burger’s

Kirsty MacColl: Tropical Brainstorm

Kirsty MacColl is the cheeky answer to the saying, “It’s the singer not the song.” She’s the singer and the song, singing like

    The Mother Hips: Green Hills of Earth

The Mother Hips’ invitation on opening track “Given for You” is by no means a subtle one: “If it calms us down, then it’s

My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult: A Crime for All Seasons

You gotta feel a bit sorry for My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult. I mean, they started out as a couple of guys who

Marah: Kids In Philly

Read somewhere that Marah was supposed to be the future of alternative country, or some such. I sure don’t hear it. What about the

    Molasses: Triologie: Toil & Peaceful Life

Molasses is one of those groups I’ve been told is a “must listen”, but my fear of “country/folk noir” and my utter aversion

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