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Friday, February 20 2015

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?


Wednesday, February 18 2015

John Boorman Revisits the British Empire With ‘Queen and Country’

While John Boorman doesn't transform the genre here as he did in Hope and Glory, he does give Queen and Country more bite than the usual soft-focus waltz down memory lane.


Man Against the Elements, Alone on the Prairie

Hugo Glass survives a brutal attack to pursue those who left him to die in this retelling, based on true events during the frontier winter of 1823-1824.


Time Slips: “Guardians 3000 #5”

Guardians 3000 is a thrill ride, a roller coaster, a starship making 180 degree turns.


‘Jimi: All Is by My Side’ Is a Portrait of an Artist Without His Art

Where Jimi Hendrix’s music is a fireworks display, this film is rather grey and lifeless.


Steve Earle and the Dukes: Terraplane

Terraplane pays homage to the Texas blues, with mixed results.


The Amazing: Picture You

Picture You is too solid to float away and, at its finest moments, too lasting to fade.


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