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Recordings

Aphex Twin

by David King November 26, 2014

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  For decades now Aphex Twin’s Richard James has maintained a mystique that paints him as both madman and genius. His work is like some sort of curse he is forced to pour out over homemade ...

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Run The Jewels

by David King November 26, 2014

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  In an age when Taylor Swift can release a jingle for New York City’s tourism campaign that simply says “New York: It’s waiting for you,” like it’s a fucking pot of gold waiting to be ...

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Captain Beefheart

by David Greenberger November 20, 2014

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  The Captain Beefheart catalog has been in a shoddy state for some time. The new four-CD set Sun Zoom Spark: 1970 to 1972 remedies that in suitably dignified style. The peak of Beefheart’s powers with ...

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Arch Stanton Quartet

by Jeff Nania November 20, 2014

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  Blues For Soli is The Arch Stanton Quartet's sophomore release, which comes two years after their first record, and a year after the group collectively traveled to Egypt for a cultural exchange which featured a ...

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Marco Benevento

by Jeff Nania November 13, 2014

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  “Don’t sit down on them . . . what you’re feeling,” Marco Benevento sings on "If I Get to See You at All" from his newest record, Swift. This seems like an apt message for ...

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Pallbearer

by David King November 13, 2014

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  Someone call Ozzy Osbourne and tell him he’s allowed to die now. Satan has cut a deal with his replacement, and I’m not surprised to tell you that they are from Little Rock, Ark. Pallbearer ...

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The Flaming Lips

by Mike Hotter November 13, 2014

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  The Beatles’ Summer of Love release, Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, is usually the album touted as their best, but if you give a close listen to the rest of their catalog, you would ...

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A Harmony of Its Own

by David Greenberger October 30, 2014

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  Music is one of the primary elements by which I can chart my life. Through these events and ideas I see where I was and where I’ve gone. Records released more than 40 years ago ...

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Paul Bley

by David Greenberger October 9, 2014

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  It’s rare that unadorned type alone can make for such an apt cover, but Paul Bley’s Play Blue is as fine an example as you’re likely to see. The inch-high uppercase sans-serif black letters fill ...

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Weezer

by David King October 9, 2014

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  Weezer suck. They’ve sucked hard, very, very hard for the better portion of their time as a band. And it seems all this sucking was done on purpose—well at least purposefully by frontman Rivers Cuomo, ...

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Matt Garrison

by Jeff Nania September 25, 2014

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  Saxophonist Matt Garrison’s newest album is a collection of tunes and arrangements he has put together over a 15-year period. It features straight-ahead boppish originals like “Steppin Up,” standards like Lee Morgan’s “Ceora,” and pop ...

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Interpol

by David King September 25, 2014

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  Some bands need to die to to protect their legacy. If Interpol were a samurai, people would probably be lining up to give them swords to fall on. It’s not that Interpol were ever the ...

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Godflesh

by David King September 18, 2014

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  Imagine if some of Factory Records biggest artists, like New Order or Happy Mondays, had discovered Black Sabbath’s Tony Iommi and asked him to play fewer chords (yes fewer) over their steady electronic beats and ...

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Death From Above 1979

by David King September 18, 2014

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  I felt hollow after my first listen to Death From Above 1979’s 2004 full length debut You’re a Woman, I’m a Machine. The Toronto dance-punk duo made up of Jesse Keeler on bass and synths ...

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Todd Terje

by Josh Potter August 21, 2014

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When Daft Punk released Random Access Memories last year, it seemed to prophesy a nu-disco revival, a return to EDM’s roots in the analog glitz of ’70s-vintage synthesizers, cocaine, and ostentatious evening wear. The revival ...

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Pomplamoose

by Alexander M. Stern August 21, 2014

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Pomplamoose are a musical duo from the Bay Area who have been producing hugely entertaining videos since 2008. A real life couple, multi-instrumentalists Jack Conte and Natalie Dawn are probably best known for the series ...

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Shabazz Palaces

by Josh Potter July 31, 2014

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When contemporary rappers talk about “real hip-hop,” it’s usually an appeal to that art form’s “golden age” of the late ’80s and early ’90s—an era they view as more aesthetically compelling because the ethos was ...

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Keith Jarrett & Charlie Haden

by David Greenberger July 31, 2014

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Charlie Haden died on July 11, a month shy of his 77th birthday. His discography follows the shape of a life from restless, explorative young bass player, to confident middle age and its continuing new ...

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Mastodon

by David King July 3, 2014

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Once More ‘Round the Sun isn’t exaclty the kind of title that inspires excitement. It screams: “Here we go guys, another fucking album, another fucking touring cycle,” but the disc does provide a break in ...

Jack White

by Elyse Beaudoin July 3, 2014

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There is little that Jack White seems to do without meaning. Lazaretto, his latest album, is layered with intricate instrumentals and passionate lyrics that speak volumes from his personal experiences to broad views of humanity ...

Careers and Great Mutations

by Josh Potter June 19, 2014

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Guitarists get all the glory, but it’s the rhythm section that makes the band. While a melody or lyric often remains as the salient part of the song in a listener’s memory, it’s the way ...

The Lucky Jukebox Brigade

by Josh Potter June 19, 2014

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The Lucky Jukebox Brigade are a rock band, but the project might as well be a burlesque show or a Broadway musical, a Victorian novel or a coloring book. The seven-piece group will release their ...

Ray LaMontagne

by Alexander M. Stern June 5, 2014

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  Did somebody put something in the water? Psychedelia seems to be the go-to for bearded alt-rockers this season. Ray LaMontagne, whose previous effort was 2010’s pastoral God Willin’ and the Creek Don’t Rise, joins the Black ...

John Davey

by Jeff Nania June 5, 2014

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  Bassist and composer John Davey's newest album Open Range is a worthwhile listen. He is joined by guitarist Ken McBain and drummer Dean Sharp for 12 songs in the guitar-trio idiom.  Davey's upright bass always ...

Matthew Sweet and Susanna Hoffs

by Alexander M. Stern June 5, 2014

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  Early-’90s wunderkind Matthew Sweet and late-’80s siren Susanna Hoffs have released their third all-covers album, Under the Covers, Vol. 3. The two previous volumes featured faithfully rendered performances of songs from the ’60s and ’70s, ...