Written by Kevin Renick Wednesday, 28 March 2007 14:52
Havnevik has the touch, apparently, but knowing the little details about her past hardly prepares you for the vibrant, gorgeous sound of her debut.
Written by Amanda Pelle Wednesday, 28 March 2007 14:29
At best, Taglieri's musical abilities, especially those portrayed in "Wide Awake & Dreaming," the album's namesake, might be suitable for a modern church choir.
Written by Dave Jasmon Wednesday, 28 March 2007 14:23
One only needs to look to the masterful construction of "However Many Takes It Takes" to see that Heidinger feels the genre in his bones, as his learned tone confidently suggests that Vandaveer is worth a listen, that his stories are worth being heard.
Tuesday, 27 March 2007 13:37
In celebration of the group's 40th anniversary, Epic/Legacy Records has deemed it the right time to reissue Sly & The Family Stone's seven LPs, with the usual digital re-mastering, revised liner notes, and bonus tracks included. These new CD packages provide a thorough look at the birth and death of Sly Stone's American dream.
Written by Jason Green Monday, 26 March 2007 13:45
"On Your Level," the second track on Never Been Better, has the underdog anthem qualities of classic Replacements, Matt Marka singing in a rough-throated howl over guitars that have the wild fury of Bob Stinson but the lo-fi buzz of Hüsker Dü-era Bob Mould.
Written by Kevin Renick Monday, 26 March 2007 08:43
Pocket Symphony is eminently listenable, as long as you're not expecting to rock out or looking for retreads of "Moon Safari."
Written by Dave Jasmon Monday, 26 March 2007 08:25
Hammond proves plenty capable, suggesting that it may be time for Casablancas to loosen the band's collaborative strings.
Written by Dave Jasmon Friday, 23 March 2007 03:48
While Bird's live performances serve as a landscape for rewriting his songs, as well as artistic experimentation, the 33-year-old Illinoisan has found stability in the studio, a place where his beauteous forms and melodies come to harbor.
Written by Dave Jasmon Friday, 23 March 2007 03:37
On "Parting of the Sensory," a sleepy acoustic is held up by rhythmic claps before jumping into a hoot-and-holler romp, and "We've Got Everything" employs Mercer's yelp to bring the album's most danceable song a little light-hearted charm.
Wednesday, 21 March 2007 15:24
Admittedly they have dropped some rather forgetful releases in their history, but picking out which records are their worst (my vote goes for 2002's TA) is liable to stir up arguments voicing the exact opposite opinion. Also, simply describing the band without disagreements is a true rarity. Welcome to the world of the Trans Am fan.
Wednesday, 21 March 2007 15:12
The pair have sold millions of records between them, Shaw as the singer/guitarist of Styx and the writer of all that band's best songs ("Renegade," for example) and Blades as the singer/bassist of hair band giants Night Ranger, but neither has had a hit since 1 B.C. (Before Cobain), making a grasp at recapturing their glory with a covers album pretty much an inevitability.
Wednesday, 21 March 2007 14:58
If his new band's debut album is any indication, Blink bassist Mark Hoppus didn't take the breakup all that well. "Please understand/ This isn't just goodbye/ This is I can't stand you" he wails on the dark "No, It Isn't."
Wednesday, 21 March 2007 14:43
Refreshingly, the Greencards are neither hidebound by bluegrass traditions nor divorced from them. Combining Anglo and American, folk and popular, the separate influences upon their sound are apparent but never dominant.
Wednesday, 21 March 2007 14:36
Released much later than originally anticipated, the Noisette's first LP is a truly a priceless pearl embedded into a normal-looking oyster.
Wednesday, 21 March 2007 14:31
Their undeniable talent gives them accessibility to a plethora of musical opportunities.
Wednesday, 21 March 2007 14:25
Lead singer Michael Shepard confusingly ooohs and aaahs for about a minute, then returns to the chorus.
Wednesday, 21 March 2007 14:19
I like it in the way I like Green Day: it's OK to listen to once or twice, but after that, I get a little overwhelmed by the brutality of what might have otherwise been a perfectly soothing song.
Wednesday, 21 March 2007 14:14
Many Sound of Silver songs have strong lyrical content, which is pretty impressive for a dance-punk album, and an improvement from the debut - though don't expect poetry.
Wednesday, 21 March 2007 14:09
The album starts off with its best song, "Glueman," a fantastic Fender Rhodes-driven number that bops along, getting progressively better as it goes. In this writer's opinion, this was one of the best singles of last year.
Wednesday, 21 March 2007 14:04
It's tasteful but not terribly innovative; sweet but never cloying; endearing and enjoyable.
Written by Paul John Little Monday, 12 March 2007 03:02
Neon Bible is to the '00s what Radiohead's OK Computer was to the '90s. Quite simply, it captures the zeitgeist as only a few pieces of popular music have ever managed to do.
Written by Kevin Renick Sunday, 11 March 2007 11:17
The nice balance between the clean guitars and Zac Young's cool drumming on "No Stars" serves as a perfect setting for Taylor's soft, organically pure voice.
Written by Dave Jasmon Friday, 02 March 2007 09:08
Imagine if Oasis and the Libertines had a baby, and that baby didn't think he was the greatest thing in the world. That baby would probably like Hats Off to the Buskers.
Written by Dave Jasmon Friday, 02 March 2007 09:02
The Fratellis embrace what most young bands try so hard to ignore: their hooky instincts.
Written by Laura Hamlett Monday, 26 February 2007 14:17
"It makes me feel free to do anything," Woomble sings on "Every Line of a Long Moment," and I can't help but think, yes, that's what a good song will do.
Written by C. Saathoff Monday, 26 February 2007 14:13
...a guitar-rocker laced with social and political commentary that continues right where 2005's Okemah and the Melody of Riot left off.
Written by Amy Burger Monday, 26 February 2007 14:02
The opening song, "Play This," is a real departure from Williams' generally laid-back, "jammy" sound, with a punk-inspired, hard guitar opening and funky, Flea-like bass riffs throughout.
Written by Dave Jasmon Monday, 26 February 2007 13:41
The clearest candidate for a universal favorite lies in the Johannsson-sung "It's Alright," an acoustic-driven piece built around smooth, echoing vocals, harmonic expansion, and beautifully sincere lyrics.
Written by Amanda Pelle Monday, 26 February 2007 13:36
"Faithful and blind/ You finish me off like a sentence."
Written by Kaylen Hoffman Monday, 26 February 2007 13:32
"Audience Reaction" has the quaint thoughts of, "If you go down on me/ I'll go down on you." So not the cute lyrics I was expecting. At all.
Written by Dave Jasmon Saturday, 24 February 2007 09:34
These five Pennsylvanian dudes are musically old souls, Cro-magnons in the midst of their psychedelic peers.
Written by David Lichius Wednesday, 21 February 2007 03:32
While Hella's previous output of no-wave guitar/drum weirdness had enough elbow room for some well-placed chirping, having Aaron Ross on the microphone full time has resulted in a major shift in the band's song structure.
Written by Aaron Brummet Wednesday, 21 February 2007 03:01
While there are no extreme departures from their bouncy modern rock norm, nearly every track shows hints of evolution.
Written by Kevin Renick Wednesday, 21 February 2007 02:52
8. Golden Ball won the Philadelphia City Paper 2005 Choice award for "Best Weird Band." I'm inclined to give them that same commendation right now.
Written by Laura Hamlett Wednesday, 21 February 2007 02:44
we play danceable, shed rehearsed guitar music. we like to dance, drink, draw, pretend to be on a mobile phone whilst we are not, write songs, dance.
Written by Kevin Renick Wednesday, 21 February 2007 02:37
Are "pounding drums" and "squiggly synth sounds" what come from long hours contemplating the hidden mysteries of space and particulate matter?
Written by Aaron Brummet Wednesday, 21 February 2007 02:34
Shara Worden's voice could be put on top of Gilbert Gottfried and a pack of dying howler monkeys and still sound five steps past amazing.
Written by Laura Hamlett Sunday, 18 February 2007 06:51
Miller's just a kid, really, and he's working with former Atlantic Records president Ron Shapiro, among others. And I like him anyway.
Written by Laura Hamlett Sunday, 18 February 2007 06:03
With Four Winds EP, Bright Eyes' first new release since the double infusion, the multifaceted Conor Oberst has chosen sides in a resolute way.
Written by Laura Hamlett Sunday, 18 February 2007 05:17
Owen's latest CD is everything you've come to expect from Kinsella, and more. It's even more understated, if that's possible, with richly woven strings and chords backing Kinsella's frail yet competent vocals and revealing tales.
Written by Laura Hamlett Sunday, 18 February 2007 04:20
"Save Yourself," aside from being catchy as all hell, features some of the sweetest vocals this side of Jeff Buckley.
Written by Elizabeth Feldman Tuesday, 13 February 2007 04:49
From beginning to end, the record feels as though it is taking you on a ride where you stop at just about every musical genre available, leaving you dizzy as it lets you off, fumbling to find your footing.
Written by James McAnally Tuesday, 13 February 2007 04:43
Plays is a world of its own, where digital noise, cut-up collage, and accordion circles collide.
Written by Dave Jasmon Tuesday, 13 February 2007 04:37
His free spirit, throwback sensibilities, and unspoken respect for those who made him are all promises of a nostalgic growth that is all too welcome in a generation of egoist talking heads.
Written by Kevin Renick Tuesday, 13 February 2007 04:30
"In a trance, in a trance/ I could dance this night away," sings Meisfjord, and with texture-embedded beats like this, so could most listeners.
Written by Bob McMahon Tuesday, 06 February 2007 15:55
Combining a knack for catchy melodies with a passionate performance and lyrics never too far removed from traditional rock subject, the Visitors should appeal to any garage rock enthusiast with their just-under-30-minutes, self-titled album.
Written by Dave Jasmon Tuesday, 06 February 2007 14:57
Touting their divergence from cut-and-paste radio rock, the Upright Animals form echoing, deeply cosmic ballads, anchored by suspended vocals and peppered with the subtly expansive merging of concise, space-rock guitar.
Written by Kaylen Hoffman Tuesday, 06 February 2007 14:53
As I listened, I was instantly transported to a grassy park, sitting on a blanket with my three closest friends, eating fresh fruit and laughing lightly as the sun shined down on our bare shoulders.
Written by Andrew Scavotto Tuesday, 06 February 2007 14:41
All of the 2006 hype has made Some Loud Thunder one of the most anticipated CDs of 2007, with critics and fans eager to see what singer/songwriter Alec Ounsworth will do with some exposure to fame and new resources. The result is a markedly more complicated, almost maniacal experiment in track layering and production.
Written by Bradley Terebelo Thursday, 01 February 2007 03:18
Distorted vocals and guitar? Check. Repetitive bass notes? Check. Mood-moving lyrics? Check.
Written by Jason Green Thursday, 01 February 2007 03:13
The biggest complaint to be lodged against this EP is that, at 24 minutes, it's far too short.
Written by Kevin Renick Thursday, 01 February 2007 03:09
David Gould, who previously played banjo for and led the Bootleg Remedy, must clearly be some sort of nonconformist genius, so gracefully does he buck trends and come up with his own version of life-affirming modern music.
Written by Maria Kriszt Thursday, 01 February 2007 03:05
Hobex comes out with a nice, mellow funk beat and lyrics that tell you to loosen up and enjoy the sounds, which helps set the mood for the rest of the CD.
Written by Dave Jasmon Thursday, 01 February 2007 03:01
Essentially a band of collaborators in support of the songwriting of Todd Vandenberg, Heller Mason portrays a dampened soul dipping its oar in a lake of grey humilities.
Written by Kevin Renick Thursday, 01 February 2007 02:58
This is an astonishingly good record that provides an easy answer to the question, "When does pop music rise to the level of art?"
Written by Jeremy Goldmeier Thursday, 01 February 2007 02:54
With the absence of all of the musical distractions that songwriters frequently employ to support their lyrics, there's really little to talk about with Woke Myself Up other than the themes expressed.
Written by Sam Levy Wednesday, 31 January 2007 09:25
We're delivered to this place we don't know, in a time we don't know, and somehow feel like we know exactly where we are. We see the grimey smiles, and the smokehouse soot doubling as sunshine. Welcome to Halifax.
Written by Jeremy Goldmeier Wednesday, 31 January 2007 09:22
Whatever comparisons one wants to apply—and jeez, there's so many trendy artists out there to name-drop—Quixoticism succeeds because it lacks any of the pretensions that so often scour records of this type.
Written by Kevin Renick Wednesday, 31 January 2007 09:11
Any budding garage band with a sense of humor can come up with a unique moniker, but only the ones with real talent and determination will likely see their name become secondary to their sound.
Written by Jason Green Wednesday, 31 January 2007 09:00
When Lee and Balsamo experiment, however, they almost always succeed. On "Cloud Nine" and "Lose Control," the band uses sequenced drumbeats courtesy of DJ Lethal (of House of Pain and Limp Bizkit fame) and echo-laden vocals to form airy arrangements that at times border on trip-hop, like some crazy bastard child of Korn and Portishead.
Written by Kevin Renick Wednesday, 31 January 2007 08:55
Williamson has a poignant, delicate approach to playing piano that often provides more of the emotional pull than her vocals do.
Written by Jason Green Wednesday, 31 January 2007 08:51
A few ballads even sneak in to shake up the tempo, which helps the flow of the album even if they aren't particularly memorable individually.
Written by Kevin Renick Wednesday, 31 January 2007 08:48
Waters' third album on her own label builds in intensity and curious details until the initial seeming lack of originality gives way to a much more lasting impression. This woman is a keen observer of life, a deeply empathetic soul, and a truly devoted musician.
Written by Dave Jasmon Wednesday, 31 January 2007 08:44
Having assembled a diversely talented group of musicians in the Clash's Paul Simonon (bass), the Verve's Simon Tong (lead guitar), Afrobeat specialist Tony Allen (drums), and the production of Danger Mouse, Albarn never seems to fully engage any of them.
Written by Tyson Blanquart Wednesday, 24 January 2007 14:05
Sonic Youth captures this improvisation and musical weirdness on nearly every album, so much so that they are the standard by which noise music is measured.
Written by Dave Jasmon Wednesday, 24 January 2007 13:59
While the (past and possibly present) prom-night power of "Forever Young" is what will most likely dominate the attentions of Casino Twilight Dogs, it is by no means the high point of the album.
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