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Sunday, January 19 2003

Various Muppets: The Muppet Show: Music Mayhem & More (The 25th Anniversary Collection)

Yes, that’s right. In addition to playing the music and lighting the lights, it’s also time to put on make-up and dress up


Stevie Wonder: Stevie Wonder: The Definitive Collection

It’s a long-overdue retrospective of one of the most influential artists in pop music history.


Chip Taylor & Carrie Rodriguez: Let’s Leave This Town

Chip Taylor (born John Wesley Voight) will of course never be as famous as his Midnight Cowboy-starring older sibling Jon Voight. However, Taylor’s artistry


3 Doors Down: Away From the Sun

A little story: Once upon a time, you’re a struggling rock act in some weary old town where no one listens to anything not


Starclock: self-titled

So here’s my pick for under-the-radar album of the year: the fantastically strange, way out-there-yet-incessantly-catchy-and-accessible self-titled debut from Nashville’s Starclock. Starclock is the


Siouxsie and the Banshees: The Best of Siouxsie and the Banshees

If any band is worthy of the “best of” or “greatest hits” packages that have become so prevalent in the past few years it has


Emitt Rhodes: self-titled

I owe this to Wes Anderson. After the final credits rolled on the director’s The Royal Tenenbaums, I rushed from the theatre to the


Joe Pernice: Big Tobacco

In my bleakest hours, there are some records I’ll always turn to. Quietly wretched and tuneful, they don’t bother me with quick tempos


Lord Sterling: Weapon of Truth

What do you get when you mix “traditional blues progressions” and “Black Flag-esque dissonance”? Apparently you get some rather standard hard rock. The latest entry


David Bowie: Best of Bowie

Is there anyone who would begrudge the Thin White Duke a two-disc greatest hits collection? I think not. Love him or hate him, it’s


Friday, January 17 2003

Sous Les Toits de Paris (1930)

René Clair combined music and sound effects in addition to minimal dialogue, with a moving camera in order to involve the eye as well as the ear.


Street of No Return (1989)

Fuller never gave a bad interview, remaining throughout his career grandiose, garrulous, and gung-ho about moviemaking.


Invaders From Mars (1953)

We don't know what's out there, but we're pretty sure it isn't up to any good.


Thursday, January 16 2003

Various Artists: Freedom: Songs from the Heart of America

For a small yet impassioned group of audiophiles, Harry Smith’s Anthology of Folk Music represents the Rosetta Stone of any music claiming the title “


Tinariwen: The Radio Tisdas Sessions

This debut album by Tinariwen, also known as the Tuareg Rebel Blues Band, can seem the antithesis of Western pop music, even that generated by the engines currently driving the world music markets.


Sixpence None the Richer: Divine Discontent

Sixpence None the Richer’s new album, Divine Discontent is 13 songs of pure pop genius. A big call, I know, but every song on the


The Silos: Cuba

Remember 1987? It doesn’t seem so long ago, not until people start celebrating the 15th anniversary of things that happened that year. Not until you


System of a Down: Steal This Album!

Released in 2001, System of a Down’s sophomore album Toxicity was an important one, bearing three vital characteristics that popular music was sorely lacking: it


King Kooba: Indian Summer

If hip-hop has taught the world anything, it’s that an old sound or sample can be either a thrill-ride or a dull copy. Whether


Joan of Arse: Distant Hearts, A Little Closer

Imagine putting several centuries of bloody history—dead kings, ruthless mutinies, prison riots, famine, cannibalism, rape—and encasing them in the fragile shell of a


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