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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.

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Doctor Fluorescent's Debut Is a Relaxing Retro Synth Ride

Doctor Fluorescent's debut album is a chill piece of songcraft steeped in vintage synths and other retro electronic sounds.

Music

Sega Bodega's Low-Key Electropop on 'Salvador' Can't Escape Weak Lyrics

As Sega Bodega, London's Salvador Navarrete creates mostly quiet electronic pop music, with occasional forays into more uptempo material on his new album, Salvador.

Music

Dan Luke and the Raid Try Out Lots of Different Sounds on Their Debut

There are a lot of good elements on Out of the Blue. Kentucky rockers Dan Luke and the Raid might make some great music in the future, but they aren't quite there yet.

Music

Nada Surf Get Philosophical on 'Never Not Together'

Never Not Together is the best record Nada Surf have made in quite a while, as it sees the indie rock/power pop group stress the need for more empathy in the world.

Music

Beck + Pharrell = Mushy Synth Songs? Huh.

Hyperspace ends up being a frustrating record. Beck and Pharrell Williams produce two excellent songs, "Uneventful Days" and "Saw Lightning", but their other five tracks each leave something to be desired.

Music

Drive-By Truckers Are Sadder and Angrier on 'The Unraveling'

Once Drive-By Truckers' The Unraveling hits the fourth song, "Thoughts and Prayers", the album dives headlong into the nightmares of the United States in 2020.

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Little Scream Combines Easygoing Pop with Serious Lamentations About Politics and Culture on 'Speed Queen'

Montreal's Little Scream offers up reflections on class and poverty disguised as sweet low-key pop songs on her real grower of an album, Speed Queen.

Music

Battles Keep the Loops Going on 'Juice B Crypts'

Going from a trio to a duo doesn't affect Battles' dedication to chirpy synths and deep grooves on their latest, Juice B Crypts.

Music

'Closer Than Together' Is Up and Down for the Avett Brothers

The good outweighs the not so good on the Avett Brothers' Closer Than Together, but not by a lot. Is it time for producer Rick Rubin to move on?

Music

Lightning Bolt Are Back and As Loud as Ever on 'Sonic Citadel'

Lightning Bolt's Sonic Citadel is both punishingly noisy and, at times, surprisingly tuneful. People who are on Lightning Bolt's exceedingly loud, improvisational vibe will find plenty to like here.

Music

The Dead South's 'Sugar and Joy' Is One of 2019's Most Entertaining Albums

The Dead South combine bluegrass and string band sounds into one excellent package with Sugar and Joy.

Reviews

LIFE Are Sardonic and Raw on 'A Picture of Good Health'

Hull, UK punk rockers, LIFE offer stripped down sound and creative arrangements that make A Picture of Good Health a compelling second album.

Reviews

The Highwomen Is a Supergroup That Packs a Punch

Brandi Carlile, Amanda Shires, Maren Morris, and Natalie Hemby collaborate on a highly entertaining country album as the Highwomen.

Music

The Hold Steady Return to Form on 'Thrashing Thru the Passion'

The classic rock-inspired Hold Steady sound revitalized on their latest, Thrashing Thru the Passion, with keyboardist Franz Nicolay back and a horn section in tow.

Music

Penny and Sparrow Sprinkle Some R&B on Their Folk Music with 'Finch'

Austin folkies Penny and Sparrow explore low key R&B textures and add a bit of soulful punch to their lovely sound on Finch.

Music

Indie Rockers Spoon Issue a Greatest Hits Collection

Amidst a tour opening for Beck and Cage the Elephant, Spoon will release a greatest hits collection in August that's a wonderful overview of their music.

Music

Imperial Teen Are Masters of Catchy Hooks

Imperial Teen's Now We Are Timeless shows what a veteran band can do when they are locked in together. Highly recommended for fans of the kind of pop-rock that doesn't make the mainstream charts anymore.

Music

Bleached Sneak Up on You with Their Brand of Power Pop

Bleached's Don't You Think You've Had Enough? is a summer record with big sing-along power pop songs that deliver.

Music

Sacred Paws Make Fun and Upbeat Rock Music on 'Run Around the Sun'

Glasgow-based indie poppers Sacred Paws offer up a second album full of brisk, bright songs that draw from several styles, notably Afrobeat and post-punk.

Music

Guitar Wolf Is Still Loud and Fast and Hungry in 'Love and Jett'

Guitar Wolf, Japan's answer to the Ramones, has proudly kept their shtick going for 32 years, and the ravenous pack doesn't let up in their latest, Love and Jett.

Music

Versing's '10,000' Traffics in Indie Rock Blandness

Versing is a Seattle-based band that blends elements of '90s alt-rock, shoegaze, and post-punk into a single bland indie rock sound.

Music

Otoboke Beaver Is Loud, Fast, and Fun on 'Itekoma Hits'

Otoboke Beaver's songs run the punk gamut from raging hardcore to bouncy pop-punk and hit most of the points in between on Itekoma Hits.

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