Pop Past

New York Dolls’ ‘Too Much Too Soon’ Lived Up to Its Title (More or Less) 

New York Dolls’ ‘Too Much Too Soon’ Lived Up to Its Title (More or Less) 

The New York Dolls didn’t just play rock and roll. They swung, achieving a groove that set them apart from other rockers at the time and since.

Superchunk’s ‘Foolish’ Is Genre-Defining Indie Heartbreak

Superchunk’s ‘Foolish’ Is Genre-Defining Indie Heartbreak

Foolish was Superchunk committing to staying indie amid turmoil, and the scene is better for it. Their discography is filled with iconic singles defining American indie rock.

Avant-Metal’s Lords of Terror: Fantômas’ Eponymous Debut at 25

Avant-Metal’s Lords of Terror: Fantômas’ Eponymous Debut at 25

Fantômas stand as one of the most audacious music projects of the 1990s. You almost wonder if the quasi-mainstreamish Faith No More held Mike Patton back.

Finding Their Way: Rush’s Debut Album at 50

Finding Their Way: Rush’s Debut Album at 50

Fifty years after its release, progressive rockers Rush’s debut album remains an important stepping stone in the Canadian trio’s long journey to success.

25 Years of Tom Waits’ ‘Mule Variations’

25 Years of Tom Waits’ ‘Mule Variations’

With Mule Variations, Tom Waits tamed his vaudevillian guises and showed that he was aging gracefully, while retaining his integrity towards his artistry.

The 100 Best Alternative Songs of the 1980s

The 100 Best Alternative Songs of the 1980s

The best alternative songs of the 1980s span punk, post-punk, new wave, college rock, underground, goth, new romantic, ska, power pop, hardcore, and indie rock.

The Fiery Furnaces’ Songs on ‘Widow City’ Are Multiverse 45s

The Fiery Furnaces’ Songs on ‘Widow City’ Are Multiverse 45s

The songs on the Fiery Furnaces’ Widow City are like a multiverse 45; they’ll never be hits on this Earth but might sell millions in a world slightly tweaked.

The Eagles Were ‘On the Border’ of Greatness 50 Years Ago

The Eagles Were ‘On the Border’ of Greatness 50 Years Ago

The Eagles’ On the Border (1974) signified the crossing of a musical boundary, as they progressed from country to rock, ensuring future mainstream success.

Built to Spill’s ‘Keep It Like a Secret’ Still Surprises at 25

Built to Spill’s ‘Keep It Like a Secret’ Still Surprises at 25

Has any songwriter used the words “things” and “sounds” and made small matters seem more significant and full of possibility as much as Built to Spill’s Doug Martsch?

Elvis Costello’s ‘Armed Forces’ Remains a Potent Critique of Power

Elvis Costello’s ‘Armed Forces’ Remains a Potent Critique of Power

Forty-five years after Elvis Costello’s Armed Forces first arrived in record stores, its commentary on fascism is extremely relevant to today’s politics.

Kings Will Be Crowned: Queen’s ‘Queen II’ at 50

Kings Will Be Crowned: Queen’s ‘Queen II’ at 50

Queen’s 1974 sophomore album, Queen II is an overlooked progressive rock masterpiece that predicted so much of their later work. It’s also still enormous fun.

Those Days Are Gone Forever: Steely Dan’s ‘Pretzel Logic’ at 50

Those Days Are Gone Forever: Steely Dan’s ‘Pretzel Logic’ at 50

Steely Dan’s 50-year-old third album, Pretzel Logic, conceals its dark satirical vision of modern society beneath immaculate studio production.