Reviews
Various Artists: The Rough Guide to Flamenco Nuevo

Some compilations summarize a genre. This one makes it look larger than you expected.

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21 Apr 2006 // 12:00 AM

Elf Power: Back to the Web

Once-lo-fi band grows up, trades fantasy for folk on often-lovely album.

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Theo & the Skyscrapers: Theo and the Skyscrapers

Theo Kogan is out there, trying to find that breakthrough moment, but the Skyscrapers don't seem like the skyrocket she's looking for.

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Hawthorne Heights: If Only You Were Lonely

Finally -- an emo-punk album that realizes choruses and hooks are important, too!

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20 Apr 2006 // 1:00 AM

The sign of good writing is that it raises questions and comparisons that even the writer hadn't originally intended.

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20 Apr 2006 // 1:00 AM

Neko Case

Banishing the grey days of a wintery spring.

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The First Human: The Race to Discover Our Earliest Ancestors by Ann Gibbons

Ann Gibbons tells the story of human origins and evolution by addressing one of its aspects, the search for the earliest human, that critter who, so long ago, decided not to be a chimp.

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Spring Break Shark Attack (2005)

Given the opportunity to achieve some truly extraordinary, truly outlandish, Spring Break Shark Attack settles for something truly bad.

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Motörhead: Deluxe Expanded Reissues

A spate of reissues captures Motörhead at its finest, filling out a completist's library of bonus material, but never trumping the original albums.

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CacheFlowe: Automate Everything

Automate Everything is an appropriate title for an album on which nothing is left to chance, with every sequence, note, and sample meticulously placed in the mix.

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Augie March: Moo, You Bloody Choir

Glenn Richards is Australia's tight-packed pop-poet; more poet than pop, certainly, since who else producing music today writes in such contorted but addictive ellipses.

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Tom Brosseau: Empty Houses Are Lonely

North Dakota born singer-songwriter makes you do a double and triple take not only for his well-crafted material but for his warble that sounds at times like a cross between Ricky Nelson and the Buckleys (Jeff or Tim).

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20 Apr 2006 // 12:00 AM

LL Cool J: Todd Smith

Todd Smith is glossy, safe, front-loaded, and slick. My mom likes it, enough said. And the young-girl LL Cool J fans will love it too, regardless of what we say here.

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Ms. John Soda: Notes and the Like

Ms. John Soda is the collaboration between Micha Acher (of Notwist fame) and singer/keyboardist Stefanie Bohm (from not-so-famous experimental rockers Couch).

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Dennis Chambers / Jeff Berlin / Dave Fiuczynski / T. Lavitz: Boston T Party

The guys here get dug in, and if this is bluesy funk, they're in no blue funk. Plenty of energy; great drummer; musical conversations; force and fluency.

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Duke Robillard: Guitar Groove-a-Rama

This is the rare guitar CD that displays both virtuosity and a sense of history and style, performed with class and substance.

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Mountain Patrol: Kekexili (2004)

Mountain Patrol: Kekexili charts one local moment in the global clash between capitalism and conservation.

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19 Apr 2006 // 1:00 AM

A Bit on the Side: Stories by William Trevor

Trevor's work has long been marked by his ability to merge bleakness and grandeur, to find an aching loveliness in the desolate and the isolated.

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Built to Spill: You in Reverse

For the first time in their career, the band has made an album that is both musically and lyrically indifferent.

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Michael Carvin: Marsalis Music Honors Michael Carvin

One of the finest drummers in American jazz is paid tribute by one of the finest families in American jazz.

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More Recent Reviews
//Mixed media
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Cage the Elephant Ignite Central Park with Kickoff for Summerstage Season

// Notes from the Road

"Cage the Elephant rocked two sold-out nights at Summerstage and return to NYC for a free show May 29th. Info on that and a preview of the full Summerstage schedule is here.

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