Cyril Neville Gets Down At Sullivan Hall

No band was more representative of Southern roots-based R&B and soul than the legendary Neville Brothers. Playing with the royalty of rock and jazz like Carlos Santana, Keith Richards, and Branford Marsalis, the band fused New Orleans mood with funk and jazz to create an entirely new sound in African-American …

by   |  04/16/2009  |  Comments Off on Cyril Neville Gets Down At Sullivan Hall

The Decemberists: Hazards Of Love

Mine eye and heart are at a mortal war
How to divide the conquest of thy sight;
Mine eye my heart thy picture’s sight would bar,
My heart mine eye the freedom of that right.
My heart doth plead that thou in him dost lie—
A closet never pierced with …

by   |  04/01/2009  |  Comments Off on The Decemberists: Hazards Of Love

Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears: Tell ‘Em What Your Name Is!

Newton’s First Law of Music states that a band must have either talent, originality, or dumb luck in order to succeed. Black Joe Lewis has created easily the least original album of the 21st century so far—I close my eyes and I swear I’m listening to Sam Cooke or James …

by   |  03/26/2009  |  Comments Off on Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears: Tell ‘Em What Your Name Is!

Venice Is Sinking: Azar

We music writers traffic in generalizations. Entrusted by you, the general public, to give advice on how to spend your hard-earned money, we are obligated to make comparisons to other, more familiar artists, in the hope that maybe it will make us easier to understand. Now, though, I find myself …

by   |  03/18/2009  |  Comments Off on Venice Is Sinking: Azar

Interview with Bloc Party: Positive Tension

With a line-up of multi-ethnic and talented young gentlemen, Bloc Party have redefined modern alternative rock. Their distorted and angular sound doesn’t immediately sound like a formula for greatness, but they’ve managed to breathe some new life into the tired world of guitar-based rock with inventive arrangements and poetic, sexual …

by   |  03/17/2009  |  Comments Off on Interview with Bloc Party: Positive Tension

Efterklang: Parades

Reductionism is alive and well in music, and nowhere is this more evident and apparent than on Parades, the most basic electronica record ever made. Incredibly, however, the album is never boring or tedious; it just lacks the pop sensibility that many post-electronic bands exemplify. Parades contains a glut of …

by   |  03/07/2009  |  Comments Off on Efterklang: Parades

The Paper Jets: Origami Rock

Much like real jet planes, The Paper Jets soar through the air, creating a loud, booming noise in the process. Their music, however, is much less airborne, hopping easily from airy acoustic pop to driving rock. An ensemble of four strapping young lads from Jersey, The Paper Jets are preparing …

by   |  03/05/2009  |  Comments (2)

Casiotone For The Painfully Alone: Advance Base Battery Life

Casiotone For The Painfully Alone is a band with a gloriously descriptive name—the work of a charmingly depressed film school dropout named Owen Ashworth, who composes love songs on answering machines and toy keyboards. The idea may make you roll your eyes, but there’s something about all these snippets of …

by   |  03/03/2009  |  Comments Off on Casiotone For The Painfully Alone: Advance Base Battery Life

The Appleseed Cast: Sagarmatha

Kansas is one of the flattest places in the world, where one can stand in a field and literally see for miles in all directions. It’s easy to see how this sense of loneliness and freedom could inspire a band like the Appleseed Cast, a duo from Lawrence, Kansas who’ve …

by   |  02/16/2009  |  Comments (1)

P.O.S.: Never Better

If there’s such thing as intellectual rap, P.O.S. has found it. Based in Minneapolis, he’s created an album that emanates anger, with uneasy and noisy beats underlining raps that are loud, rough, and guttural. Nevertheless, despite its hostility, Never Better is a lyrically engaging album. The lyrics are impressively thoughtful, …

by   |  02/10/2009  |  Comments Off on P.O.S.: Never Better


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