Piss Shit Fuck | Use Your Delusion (Tent City)

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Tuesday, 27 March 2007 12:56

psf The music itself isn't really good by any means, but it makes a statement - probably. It's fast, it's loud, it's, like, "totally hardcore, dude."




Ada Jane | Never Been Better (P.A.W.)

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Written by Jason Green Monday, 26 March 2007 13:45

cd_adajane"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.






Air | Pocket Symphony (Astralwerks)

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Written by Kevin Renick Monday, 26 March 2007 08:43

cd_airPocket Symphony is eminently listenable, as long as you're not expecting to rock out or looking for retreads of "Moon Safari."






Albert Hammond Jr. | Yours to Keep (New Line)

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Written by Dave Jasmon Monday, 26 March 2007 08:25

cd_albertHammond proves plenty capable, suggesting that it may be time for Casablancas to loosen the band's collaborative strings.






Feist | "1 2 3 4"

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Written by Joe O'Fallon Monday, 26 March 2007 08:14

feistIn the "Sally's Song" version (which lyrics I prefer) and the album version, teenage boys "too scared to own up to one little lie" confuse Leslie.



Andrew Bird | Armchair Apocrypha (Fat Possum)

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Written by Dave Jasmon Friday, 23 March 2007 03:48

armchairbirdWhile 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.



Modest Mouse | We Were Dead Before the Ship Even Sank (Epic)

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Written by Dave Jasmon Friday, 23 March 2007 03:37

weweredeadmouseOn "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.



Trans Am | Sex Change (Thrill Jockey)

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Wednesday, 21 March 2007 15:24

sexchangeAdmittedly 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.




Shaw/Blades | Influence (VH1 Classic)

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Wednesday, 21 March 2007 15:12

influencesThe 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.




+ 44 | When Your Heart Stops Beating (Interscope)

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Wednesday, 21 March 2007 14:58

44If 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."




The Greencards | Viridian (Dualtone)

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Wednesday, 21 March 2007 14:43

viridianRefreshingly, 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.





The Noisettes | What's the Time Mr Wolf? (Universal)

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Wednesday, 21 March 2007 14:36

mrwolfReleased much later than originally anticipated, the Noisette's first LP is a truly a priceless pearl embedded into a normal-looking oyster.





Mezzanine Owls | Slingshot Echoes (s/r)

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Wednesday, 21 March 2007 14:31

mezzanineowlsTheir undeniable talent gives them accessibility to a plethora of musical opportunities.





Lovedrug | Everything Starts Where It Ends (The Militia Group)

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Wednesday, 21 March 2007 14:25

lovedrugLead singer Michael Shepard confusingly ooohs and aaahs for about a minute, then returns to the chorus.





The Little Heroes | Cinematic Americana (Wednesday Records)

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Wednesday, 21 March 2007 14:19

cinematicI 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.




LCD Soundsystem | Sound of Silver (DFA)

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Wednesday, 21 March 2007 14:14

silverMany 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.






The Feed (s/r)

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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.




Grand Champeen | Dial "T" for This (In Music We Trust)

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Wednesday, 21 March 2007 14:04

grandchampIt's tasteful but not terribly innovative; sweet but never cloying; endearing and enjoyable.






Have Mercy on the Mooney Suzuki

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Written by Angie Glover Monday, 12 March 2007 03:23


We're ex-art students. We're not selling enough records to make a living. We're not on the radio, so OK, give us money and exposure.



Arcade Fire | Neon Bible (Merge)

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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.






Maria Taylor | Lynn Teeter Flower (Saddle Creek)

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Written by Kevin Renick Sunday, 11 March 2007 11:17

cd_taylorThe 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.






The View | Hats Off to the Buskers (1965)

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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.



The Fratellis | Costello Music (Universal Island)

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Written by Dave Jasmon Friday, 02 March 2007 09:02

costelloThe Fratellis embrace what most young bands try so hard to ignore: their hooky instincts.






Wut Metaphysical | Last of the Metaphysical Poets (s/r)

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Written by Jon Rayfield Friday, 02 March 2007 08:56

wutmetaphysicalThe production is dark and raw, reminiscent of Company Flow.






Big Business | Here Come the Waterworks (Hydrahead)

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Written by David Lichius Friday, 02 March 2007 08:51

bigbusinessWhile Waterworks contains multiple tracks of heavy, low-pitch bass rumblings that fans will surely recognize, this disc also finds Big Business exploring more melodic territories.






Eleni Mandell | Miracle of Five (zedtone)

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Thursday, 01 March 2007 08:51

mandellMandell writes nice uncomplicated songs that are sticky - they stay with you.






The Western States Motel | S/T (Firebird Field Recordings)

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Thursday, 01 March 2007 08:37

westernThe music appears to float above the fray and combines with searching lyrics (not searching too hard, mind you) that assures us this band will never make eye contact.





P.O.S. Will Knock You On Your Ass

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Written by Jon Rayfield Tuesday, 27 February 2007 11:22


...when you deliver a song you want that song to have a clean, cohesive package, and these days, for me anyway, I like the idea of having a clean, cohesive album. Too much combination could take away from the album, make the album feel more like a compilation, you know? It's just a matter of figuring out the right way to do it.


Roddy Woomble | My Secret Is My Silence (Pure UK/import only)

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Written by Laura Hamlett Monday, 26 February 2007 14:17

cd_woomble"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.







Son Volt | The Search (Transmit Sound/Legacy)

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Written by C. Saathoff Monday, 26 February 2007 14:13

cd_sonvolt...a guitar-rocker laced with social and political commentary that continues right where 2005's Okemah and the Melody of Riot left off.







Brent Amaker and the Rodeo (J-Shirt)

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Written by Kevin Renick Monday, 26 February 2007 14:09

cd_amaker"Sissy New Age Cowboy" lets you know what Amaker thinks of designer-wearin' C&W posers ("the Rodeo is here to kick your ass").






Martha Berner | Ten Tiny Little Pieces EP (Machine)

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Written by Jeffrey Smith Monday, 26 February 2007 14:06

It is truly a daunting task to rise above the glut of singers with guitars draped off their shoulder.



Keller Williams | Dream (Sci Fidelity)

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Written by Amy Burger Monday, 26 February 2007 14:02

cd_kellerThe 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.







Green Pitch | Ace of Hearts (Funzalo)

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Written by Jeffrey Smith Monday, 26 February 2007 13:51

Garfield glides fragilely from end to end throughout Ace of Hearts, sometime alone, sometimes alongside guitarist/vocalist Ste Rasch.



Broken Land | Audio Postcard (s/r)

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Written by Jeffrey Smith Monday, 26 February 2007 13:47

Broken Land say they have their sights set on a new territory called hindie rock: Hindustani rhythms and alternate tunings uniting under a rock and punk flag.



Bang Gang | Something Wrong (From Nowhere)

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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.



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