Angel and the Love Mongers | The Humanist Queen (Disgraceland)

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Written by James Nokes Saturday, 28 July 2007 10:40

lovemongerStrange and surprising, the sophomore release from Angel and the Love Mongers, The Humanist Queen, despite its peculiar titling manages to capture a catchy mish-mash of Depche Mode-like vocals and a sound reminiscent of The Cure, Morrissey, and Pulp.




Bodies of Water | Eyes Will Pop & Ears Will Blink (Thousand Tongues)

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Written by Mike Tangaro Saturday, 28 July 2007 10:38

cd_bodiesEach song changes direction without notice. Vocals flutter in and out of the mix, trumpets flare and then disappear into quiet, and drums pounce vibrantly before settling into a soothing beat.





The Gang Font feat. Interloper (Thirsty Ear)

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Written by Jason Green Saturday, 28 July 2007 10:35

cd_gang-fontThis is heavily intricate, wildly experimental instrumental jazz that rocks with punk-like abandon.






Butane Variations (Achord Recordings)

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Written by Kevin Renick Saturday, 28 July 2007 10:27

cd_butaneThis six-piece psych-tinged Americana ensemble, headed by songwriters Phil Weinrobe and John-Paul Norpoth, just seems to know something other bands don't. Or maybe they care more.





Chris and Thomas | Land of Sea (Defend Music Inc.)

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Written by Jeremy Goldmeier Saturday, 28 July 2007 10:19

cd_christhomasThey sing as one, allowing for a constant, delicate interplay between the two. The result is often folk music at its most enchanting.





G. Love & Special Sauce | The Sweet Sound of Summer

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Written by Amy Burger Sunday, 22 July 2007 17:00


To describe the band's one-of-a-kind sound, Dutton coined the term "hip-hop blues." This is a pretty accurate description for a guy who sounds like a cross between De la Soul and John Lee Hooker.


Avagami | Metagami (Lens)

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Written by Glen Elkins Thursday, 19 July 2007 07:17

The two Chicago natives met on Craigslist and seek to "push the pop envelope" by including "improvisational techniques into a song structure,"



Fionn Regan | The End of History (Lost Highway)

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Written by Glen Elkins Thursday, 19 July 2007 07:07

cd_fionnreganIn "Be Good or Be Gone," Regan embraces the best things about the singer/songwriter genre, creating a sincere, honest depiction of a man and his songs.






Jefferson Airplane | Sweeping Up the Spotlight, Live at the Fillmore East, 1969 (Legacy)

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Written by Amy Burger Wednesday, 18 July 2007 08:25

jefferson-airplaneThe album is a celebration of one of the greatest American rock bands playing at one of the greatest venues in America.


Driver Side Impact | The Very Air We Breathe (Victory)

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Written by Rebecca Reardon Tuesday, 17 July 2007 09:03

cd_driverGirls and boys, your prayers for yet another emo-goth-punk band of black-haired, pierced-lipped lads to feverishly adore and befriend on MySpace have been answered.





Tesla | Real to Reel (Tesla Electric Co. Rec.)

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Written by Jim Campbell Wednesday, 11 July 2007 04:28

teslaNot only is the energy notably lacking on each track, the production quality of the entire album falls flat. It fails to pop, sizzle, or even appear interesting.



Jeff Buckley | So Real: Songs From Jeff Buckley (Sony)

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Written by Gabe Bullard Wednesday, 11 July 2007 04:25

sorealbuckleyFor a "greatest hits" of sorts, it doesn't showcase Buckley's talents. Instead, it goes for the obvious appeal. The tracks chosen for this collection show Buckley's most commercial and instantly appealing side, the side that I grew to dislike over the years.


Circus Diablo | Circus Diablo (Koch)

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Written by Jim Campbell Wednesday, 11 July 2007 04:23

circusdiabloI was hoping "Commercial Break" would be interesting, full of eerie rhythms and non-sequitur lyrics, but once again the song seemed to ramble on with no point or meaning.



Great Lakes Myth Society | Compass Rose Bouquet (Quack!Media)

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Written by Rebecca Reardon Wednesday, 11 July 2007 04:20

greatlakesmythThat afternoon, I ejected the CD I intended to review first and popped in the sophomore effort from Great Lakes Myth Society. "OK, indie band I've never heard of," I thought to myself, "wow me."



Spoon | Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga (Merge)

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Written by Pete Timmermann Wednesday, 11 July 2007 04:19

gagagagagaAmong indie bands, Spoon's CD structure often feels the most like Top 40 bands, insofar as their CDs tend to have two or three really good songs, and then a lot of filler.



The Teeth | You're My Lover Now (Park the Van)

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Written by Mike Tangaro Monday, 09 July 2007 15:06

cd_teethIf imitation is the best form of flattery, consider The Kinks flattered after a spin of You're My Lover Now.






Jake Mann | Daytime Ghost (Crossbill)

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Written by Mike Tangaro Monday, 09 July 2007 15:01

cd_jakemannMann's strength lies in his ability to add subtle flourishes to the tired singer/songwriter formula, but with his experimentation, he is prone to make a few mistakes.




Prefab Sprout | Blinded With Science

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Written by Laura Hamlett Monday, 09 July 2007 14:14


I never realized Thomas Dolby had produced Steve McQueen. Back then, I didn't care whose name was affixed to which release; all that mattered was the sound, the band, the way it made me feel.


The Blue Method | Kill the Music Vol. II

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Written by Amy Burger Monday, 09 July 2007 14:07



tbmcdcoverIf you're not a fan of horns, this album may not be for you, as it is saturated with them. If you are a fan of them, as I am, it will quite literally blow you away.






Rasputina | Oh Perilous World (Filthy Bonnet)

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Written by Joseph O'Fallon Monday, 02 July 2007 09:17

cd_rasputinaLike the White Stripes' Icky Thump, Oh Perilous World finds Rasputina staying true to its fans and prior work, with fewer turnoffs to the less experimental fan.






Rocky Volotato | The Brag and Cuss (Barsuk)

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Written by Joseph O'Fallon Monday, 02 July 2007 09:13

cd_votolatoWhen I got my hands on The Brag and Cuss, I was looking for the new rock song, and I can safely say there isn't one.






Damien Dempsey | To Hell or Barbados (UFO)

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Written by Mary Beth Hascall Monday, 02 July 2007 09:08

cd_dempsey"Serious" has a steady, fast beat with Dempsey fighting himself as a tempting heroin dealer trying to sell himself a fix.






Marilyn Manson | Eat Me, Drink Me (Nothing)

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Written by Charles Evans Saturday, 30 June 2007 07:41

cd_mansonWhen all is said and done, this will inevitably be seen as the "I didn't know what else to do" album: that point when a musical artist is backed into a corner, most of the band has drifted away, and middle age begins to interrupt the fabled rock 'n' roll lifestyle. But this will also be remembered as one of Marilyn Manson's best albums, maybe even the best.





Paul McCartney | Memory Almost Full (Hear Music)

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Written by Jim Dunn Saturday, 30 June 2007 07:33

cd_mccartneyI distinctly remember sitting outside K-Mart, pulling the plastic off the latest album and examining lyrics and artwork.






Ryan Adams | Easy Tiger (Lost Highway)

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Written by Raymee Holshauser Saturday, 30 June 2007 07:21

cd_radamsRollicking soulful songs like "Good Night Rose" and "I Taught Myself How to Grow Old" have such a rich quality, it's nearly impossible to deny the singer's evolution.






The Ants | Ideabreaker (Sick Room)

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Written by Jason Neubauer Saturday, 30 June 2007 07:15

cd_antsIt's like a rock fishing lure. You hear something in the music of the Ants that draws you in, and then once you're among it, you realize it isn't what you thought. Yet you can't let go. Subtle subversives crafting pieces of melodic and principled commentary, the Ants speak softly but carry big ideas with their third full-length release, Ideabreaker.





The Polyphonic Spree | The Fragile Army (TVT)

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Written by Gabe Bullard Saturday, 30 June 2007 07:08

cd_polyOn The Fragile Army, the still 20-plus-member Polyphonic Spree take occasional steps away from sounding like a glee club conducted by Wayne Coyne. The songs (or "sections," as the band calls them) get sadder and angrier than those on previous albums, and the instrumentation varies beyond drums, guitar, and chorus.





The White Stripes | Icky Thump (Warner Bros/WEA)

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Written by Andrew Scavotto Thursday, 28 June 2007 06:11

ickythump2This may be the heaviest White Stripes album ever, and it showcases Meg's uncanny ability to understand Jack and drive the songs.



Air Supply | The Best of Air Supply: Ones That You Love

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Written by Jim Campbell Monday, 25 June 2007 09:01

cd_airsupply I completely forgot how "edgy"—by Air Supply standards, anyway—some of their songs came off.







Coles Whalen | Nothing Is Too Much (Iconic)

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Written by Raymee Holshauser Monday, 25 June 2007 08:56

cd_whalenWith songs that dispense raw emotion, Whalen proves that she is a seasoned performer with the chops to hold her own.






Signal to Noise | Kodiak (Eyeball)

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Written by David Lichius Monday, 25 June 2007 08:50

cd_signalnoiseResembling Static Prevails-era Jimmy Eat World and early day Sparta, Signal to Noise tunes are poppy with catchy hooks and choruses akimbo.






Tenderhooks | Vidalia (Rock Snob)

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Written by Kevin Renick Monday, 25 June 2007 08:45

cd_tenderhooksHis voice is mixed upfront, which means you can't ignore it. Some may wish to; Winstrom is likely gonna be an acquired taste, as there's playfulness and tension in equal measure in his tart delivery.






The Actual | In Stitches (Soft Drive)

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Written by Jason Green Monday, 25 June 2007 08:37

cd_actualThe Actual's singer/guitarist Max Bernstein's pedigree also invites curiosity: his mother is famed screenwriter and director Nora Ephron, and his father is Watergate journalist Carl Bernstein.






The Conformists | Three Hundred (54 40 or Fight)

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Written by David Lichius Monday, 25 June 2007 08:29

cd_conformistsBelleville, Ill.'s the Conformists are the closest thing the boundless St. Louis area has to Shellac.







Various Artists | Transformers: The Movie Original Motion Picture Soundtrack 20th Anniv. Ed.

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Written by Jason Green Monday, 25 June 2007 08:21

cd_transformersBoth "The Touch" and its companion piece "Dare" feature Stan Bush's wailing vocals—think Sammy Hagar and Journey's Steve Perry smooshed together—over anthemic, fist-pump-inducing hair metal that will give any child of the '80s the same warm fuzzies as blasting "Pour Some Sugar on Me" out of a redneck bar jukebox.





Sea Wolf | Get to the River Before It Runs too Low (Dangerbird)

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Written by Glen Elkins Monday, 25 June 2007 08:13

cd_seawolfChurch's pained delivery, coupled with somber organ, requires a double take to make sure the copy of Fevers and Mirrors you had in high school didn't accidentally slip into your stereo.







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