Reviews
Music

Yves Tumor Soars With 'Heaven to a Tortured Mind'

On Heaven to a Tortured Mind, Yves Tumor relishes his shift to microphone caressing rock star. Here he steps out of his sonic chrysalis, dons some shiny black wings and soars.


Recent
Books

New Translation of Balzac's 'Lost Illusions' Captivates

More than just a tale of one man's fall, Balzac's Lost Illusions charts how literature becomes another commodity in a system that demands backroom deals, moral compromise, and connections.

Music

Run the Jewels - "Ooh LA LA" (Singles Going Steady)

Run the Jewels' "Ooh LA LA" may hit with old-school hip-hop swagger, but it also frustratingly affirms misogynistic bro-culture.

Music

Protomartyr - "Processed by the Boys" (Singles Going Steady)

Protomartyr's "Processed By the Boys" is a gripping spin on reality as we know it, and here, the revolution is being televised.

Music

Folkie Eliza Gilkyson Turns Up the Heat on '2020'

Eliza Gilkyson aims to inspire the troops of resistance on her superb new album, 2020. The ten songs serve as a rallying cry for the long haul.

Film

'Slay the Dragon' Is a Road Map of the GOP's Methods for Dividing and Conquering American Democracy

If a time traveler from the past wanted to learn how to subvert democracy for a few million bucks, gerrymandering documentary Slay the Dragon would be a superb guide.

Music

Human Impact Hit Home with a Seismic First Album From a Veteran Lineup

On their self-titled debut, Human Impact provide a soundtrack for this dislocated moment where both humanity and nature are crying out for relief.

Books

Does Inclusivity Mean That Everyone Does the Same Thing?

What is the meaning of diversity in today's world? Russell Jacoby raises and addresses some pertinent questions in his latest work, On Diversity.

Music

Monophonics Are an Ardent Blast of True Rock 'n' Soul on 'It's Only Us'

The third time's the charm as Bay Area soul sextet Monophonics release their shiniest record yet in It's Only Us.

Music

Bobby Previte / Jamie Saft / Nels Cline: Music from the Early 21st Century

A power-trio of electric guitar, keyboards, and drums takes on the challenge of free improvisation—but using primarily elements of rock and electronica as strongly as the usual creative music or jazz. The result is focused.

Music

JARV IS... - "House Music All Night Long" (Singles Going Steady)

"House Music All Night Long" is a song our inner, self-isolated freaks can jive to. JARV IS... cleverly captures how dazed and confused some of us may feel over the current pandemic, trapped in our homes.

Books

Phuc Tran's Existential Trip of a Memoir, 'Sigh, Gone'

Phuc Tran's smart, tough memoir, Sigh, Gone, might launch a broken down kid to read 150 great books—for free, at the local library.

Music

Jennah Barry Offers Up a Warm, Sublime Collection of Memorable Tunes on 'Holiday'

Canadian indie folkster Jennah Barry returns with her long-awaited sophomore album, Holiday, which takes on a looser, more relaxed approach.

Music

Maria McKee Puts Down Her Electric Guitar and Picks up Dante on 'La Vita Nuova'

"Show Me Heaven" was another country. Maria McKee has moved to England, immersed herself in the Classics and turned away from the 21st century.

Books

Classic Shōjo Today: Moto Hagio's 'The Poe Clan'

Moto Hagio's The Poe Clan manga series a gender-fluid melodrama marked by deep psychological trauma.

Music

Salsa Band LPT Hints at the Genre's Future

LPT's debut album, Sin Parar, hits all the right notes for a contemporary salsa album.

Music

The Killers - "Caution" (Singles Going Steady)

The Killers go for the big hooks and singable anthems on "Caution", but opinion is sharply divided about the song's merits amongst our Singles Going Steady panel.

Music

Lilly Hiatt - "Some Kind of Drug" (Singles Going Steady)

Lilly Hiatt sings about a different kind of love on "Some Kind of Drug". Hers is for a city and the impact gentrification has had its soul.

Music

Fotocrime's '80s-Inspired Rock Is Often Half-Baked

Fotocrime's South of Heaven is interesting mostly in that it's one of the most mediocre rock records I've heard in a long time.

Music

Country's Ruthie Collins Finds 'Cold Comfort'

Ruthie Collins' Cold Comfort is devoid of glittery instrumentation and mellifluous lyrics. Instead, the music is raw, sometimes bitter yet earning for optimism. Collins' grittiness is measured and her anguish certain.

Music

'Stone Crush' Proves (Again) That Memphis Is Ground Zero for Soul and R&B

Stone Crush shines a light on the forgotten -- or never known -- artists that passed through the doors of Memphis' most storied studios in an attempt at just one fleeting moment of fame.

Music

Jazz's Kandace Springs Pays Tribute to 'The Women Who Raised Me'

Singer and pianist Kandace Springs tackles a dozen songs associated with her jazz vocal heroes, and the combination of simplicity and sincerity is winning.

Books

John Pham's ​J​&K​​ - It's a Matter of Perspective

In J&K, John Pham explores perspectives in the psychological sense. Like Picasso, he views things from more than one angle.

Music

Circles Around the Sun Shoot for the Stars on New Album

Jamrockers Circles Around the Sun's self-titled third album finds the band transcending darkness after losing their founder in 2019 to chart a groovy new course.

Music

Miranda Lambert - "Bluebird" (Singles Going Steady)

Miranda Lambert sings her blues the way an artist paints with them on her latest single, "Bluebird".

Music

Bob Dylan's "Murder Most Foul" Is His First New Song Since the Nobel Laureate

Bob Dylan's "Murder Most Foul" is a 17-minute story song about JFK's assassination and a suitable audio dispatch from and for the end times.

Music

Rustin Man's 'Clockdust' Is Woozy Psych-Folk of Arresting and Fathomless Beauty

Arriving less than a year after Drift Code, Rustin Man consolidates a rich vein of form with the sepia-toned Clockdust, an autumnal record rendered generous and exquisite by each song's emotional weight.

Music

Dua Lipa's 'Future Nostalgia' Is the Dance Escape We Need Right Now

Engaged, confident, and better than ever, Dua Lipa's Future Nostalgia is a dancefloor fire-starter but just a shade away from being a true pop masterpiece.

Music

Basia Bulat Asks 'Are You in Love?'

Are You In Love? continues Basia Bulat's work with Jim James with equally excellent results but a slightly different theme about love in general.

Books

Providing Witness: Vasily Grossman's 'Stalingrad'

In Vasily Grossman, the lost and nameless victims of the Nazi invasion of the Soviet Union – soldier and civilian, ordinary men and women – found their literary chronicler.

Music

Experimental Rock's Trees Speak Summon Kosmische Sensations on 'Ohms'

On their inspiring second album, Ohms, Arizona avant-garde collective Trees Speak invoke the best of expansive electronica through motorik repetitions across a sprawling masterwork.

Music

The Weeknd - "In Your Eyes" (Singles Going Steady)

With "In Your Eyes", Toronto's premier Michael Jackson cosplayer, the Weeknd, has advanced his visual brand while parking his music in the summer of 1984.

Music

Dua Lipa Makes Kitschy Cool on 'Future Nostalgia'

Dua Lipa's Future Nostalgia is near immaculate meta-pop that refuses to forego tight songwriting for nostalgic bells and whistles, helmed by a singer is exponentially more aware of what she's capable of.

Books

Memoir 'Scratched' Seeks Beauty in the Flawed

Scratched: A Memoir of Perfectionism is a staggering depiction of the impact of psychological trauma written with breathless intensity.

Music

The Weeknd Gets Lost in Vegas on 'After Hours'

Despite After Hours' infectious blend of '80s synthpop and dark, alternative R&B, the story's beginning to get old on the Weeknd's fourth studio album.

Music

Pearl Jam Liberate Themselves From the Past on 'Gigaton'

Gigaton sounds like Pearl Jam convincingly doing their very best to not sound like Pearl Jam. Liberated from their past and their expectations, the band have freed themselves to take some long overdue risks.

Music

Nick Storring's 'My Magic Dreams Have Lost Their Spell' Is Beautiful, Haunting, and Otherworldly

Canadian composer Nick Storring's latest album, My Magic Dreams Have Lost Their Spell, is mysterious, multilayered, and unforgettable.

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