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A Preview of the 2013 Twilight Americana Festival

Adam Klein is committed. When I sat down to meet him for coffee to chat about this year’s Twilight Americana Festival held in Athens, GA (formerly named the Athens Americana Festival), the festival’s organizer had just been rear-ended in a car accident.

Dan Mistich
Music

"I Always Considered Myself a Composer First:" An Interview with Franz Nicolay

Multi-instrumentalist Franz Nicolay established a name for himself in bands like Hold Steady and Against Me!. Here, the self-professed auto-didact discusses Kickstarter campaigns, Springsteen, and his sideline stint as a writer.

Dan Mistich
Music

Titus Andronicus vs. The Absurd Universe: An Interview with Patrick Stickles

"After their critically acclaimed The Monitor helped break them into the mainstream, Titus Andronicus are back with a new disc that slightly alters course, and in his interview with PopMatters, Patrick Stickles talks about what he expects the reaction to the disc to be, whether punk is "anti-intellectual" music, and what he really thinks about Jersey Shore ..."

Dan Mistich
Reviews

Shock Top End of the World Party: 21 December 2012 - White Sulphur Springs, WV

The end of the Mayan calendar implored many of us to consider how we’d spend our last hours on Earth. Fortunately for the people that attended the end of the world party sponsored by Shock Top, they didn’t have to think about their answers too hard.

Dan Mistich
Music

The Demon Beat: Less Is Less

The Demon Beat’s fourth LP refines the garage rock goodness offered on their earlier releases.

Music

Invisible Hand: Aja

If what’s included on Aja is a sign of things to come, expect the guys in Invisible Hand to be producing some infectious pop for wide audiences very soon.

Music

Neil Young & Crazy Horse: Psychedelic Pill

Psychedelic Pill is an exercise in consistency, illustrating that delivering the formula that has always seemed to work for Young’s fans is safe but satisfying.

Music

Andrew Bird: Hands of Glory

Hands of Glory might not stand alone as a release without the context provided by Break It Yourself, but it nevertheless serves as a testament to how capable and creative Bird can be when he’s dialed in.

SAVE / IGNORE: Labels

Wegwam

Music

Diamond Rings: Free Dimensional

Somewhere between glam rock and party pop, Free Dimensional, the second LP from Diamond Rings, underscores the fact that most innovation in popular music comes from rearranging the familiar rather than reaching out into the ether to birth something radically new.

Music

Various Artists: Athens, GA: Inside/Out Soundtrack

Repackaged with the film on DVD, the long out-of-print soundtrack has resurfaced to see the light of day once again, a sign that young indie music aficionados will discover the history of why Athens receives the reputation that it enjoys.

Music

The Helio Sequence: Negotiations

The beauty of Negotiations is in the album's unprecedented ability to cohere with itself. In a sense, the album marks its own territory with its lush, but concentrated sound.

Music

Dave Stewart: The Ringmaster General

On Dave Stewart's latest release, The Ringmaster General, the veteran musician and producer is at his best when he’s collaborating with others.

SAVE / IGNORE: Labels

Funny/Not Funny

Music

Ponderosa: Pool Party

Bands like Band of Horses, Fleet Foxes and My Morning Jacket are all vying to be crowned Undisputed Heavyweight Champion of Reverb Rock. Pool Party often comes off as Ponderosa’s attempt to throw on the gloves and step into the ring for their chance at echo-laden glory.

Music

Opossom: Electric Hawaii

For those of you interested, the formula for Electric Hawaii is as follows: snare drum, some ‘60s-sounding bass line, a keyboard melody here and there, and some half-sung lyrics that are largely unintelligible after being run through an unnecessary vocal processor.

Music

Lianne La Havas: Is Your Love Big Enough?

La Havas is the whole package and her debut LP is surely the first of many great things to come from the latest vocal sensation from across the pond.

Music

KISS: Destroyer: Resurrected

In many ways, Destroyer is KISS’s definitive album and there is a good case to be made for its re-release. However, this particular re-release includes so little bonus content that it is hard to justify its existence.

SAVE / IGNORE: Labels

Nonesuch/Warner Bros.

Music

The Corduroy Road: Two-Step Silhouette

The Corduroy Road offer listeners a sometimes dark, sometimes somber ride through the American South.

Music

Reptar: Body Faucet

Juxtaposed against their earlier effort, the songs on Reptar’s latest are much more sonically vast – although not as interesting or enduring.

Music

Various Artists: Just Tell Me That You Want Me: A Tribute to Fleetwood Mac

By including several indie contemporaries alongside already-established rock and roll heroes, Just Tell Me That You Want Me will likely provide another way for both younger and more nostalgic generations to connect with Fleetwood Mac’s back catalog.

Music

thenewno2: thefearofmissingout

Most of what is included on thefearofmissingout is hardly rock music, but that isn’t really a criticism of the record.

Music

Citizen Cope: One Lovely Day

Like his previous releases, Cope takes the helm as an aural mixologist much more so than a virtuoso musician.

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