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Gift Guide: Folk, Blues, Bluegrass and Celtic

by Glenn Weiser December 6, 2012


Given that vintage guitars, mandolins, and banjos are pretty pricey as Christmas gifts, the next best thing you can give a roots music fan are CDs of people playing them well as they sing blues, ...

Gift Guide: Christmas Music

by Shawn Stone December 6, 2012

The coolest Christmas album of 2012 arrives courtesy of Cee Lo Green. Cee Lo’s Magic Moment (Elektra) is a savvy collection of well-loved tunes that, musically, are all over the map. Cee Lo never gets ...

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Prince Rama

by Josh Potter November 29, 2012


In an interview with Bullett earlier this week, Taraka Larson, mastermind and vocalist for the sister duo Prince Rama, explained the band’s new record thusly: “I think in a way we are asking the world ...

Captain Murphy

by Josh Potter November 29, 2012


As of press time, the identity of mystery rapper Captain Murphy was still unknown. But, man, the Internet can speculate. All year, tracks have been cropping up now and again with a deep-voiced rapper spouting ...

Between the Buried and Me

by David King November 15, 2012


Between the Buried and Me are a metal band who speak a musical language all their own, but it’s one they have cobbled together with bits and pieces of the great work of others. With ...

London Symphony Orchestra

by B.A. Nilsson November 15, 2012


Conductor Valery Gergiev is not a bar-shaper who smooths each moment of music that emerges from under his baton. In the context of so many who pursue an interpretive identity through fussiness, Gergiev’s performances can ...

The Ventures

by David Greenberger November 8, 2012


I turned 13 when the Ventures’ Super Psychedelics album was released in June 1967, and I received it for my birthday. This marked my first encounter with the word psychedelic. I’d been following the Ventures ...

Annie and the Hedonists

by Glenn Weiser November 8, 2012


Three men of a certain age in Hawaiian shirts and a woman in a purple dress peer out at you from the CD cover, their upright index fingers pressed to their lips enjoining silence. That’s ...

The Art of Conversation

by Kirsten Ferguson November 1, 2012


David Greenberger with Jupiter Circle: Never Give Up Study David Greenberger and Ralph Carney: OH, PA David Greenberger & Bangalore: How I Became Uncertain David Greenberger & Mark Greenberg: Tell Me that Before David Greenberger & Dozens: Near the ...

Jed Davis

by Josh Potter October 4, 2012


The effect that Jed Davis’ liner notes can have on the unsuspecting reader is not unlike the effect his actual music can have on the uninitiated listener. Like, really? Tunes on this album were written ...

Dan Johnson and His Expert Sidemen

by Josh Potter October 4, 2012


Dan Johnson is fond of the term “Americana.” His band, the Expert Sidemen, have hosted the weekly Americana Tuesdays showcase at Valentine’s for the past year or so, and pretty much anywhere you see them ...

The Dirty Projectors

by Josh Potter September 27, 2012

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  Like so many bands who have unwittingly cursed their future efforts by releasing a universally acclaimed record, the Dirty Projectors kind of screwed themselves with how good Bitte Orca was in 2009—even though the record ...

Jeff “Siege” Siegel

by Jeff Nania September 27, 2012

  The abstract world of spontaneous sound created by drummer Jeff “Siege” Siegel and Finnish saxophonist Esa Pietila is not for the faint of heart. These two go anywhere and everywhere, and they do so with ...

Nate Danker

by Josh Potter September 27, 2012

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  Capital Region audiences probably know Nate Danker best for his metal band the Viking, who in their busiest years topped our Best Of list for that particular genre. The average Viking fan, however, might not ...

The Major Lift

by David King August 30, 2012


I feel confident saying that “The Full Retard” should have been the jam of summer 2012. Brooklyn’s El-P is an MC with indie cred and the kind of politically conscious but expectation-flaunting firebrand who is ...

Animal Collective

by Josh Potter August 23, 2012


It used to be that when a new record by a major band was approaching its release date, a few first-glimpse reviews would begin to appear in major publications thanks to the preferential advance copies ...

Dan Deacon

by Josh Potter August 23, 2012


Animal Collective are hardly the outliers when it comes to the trend of streaming new records in advance of their release date, and NPR’s First Listen is often the outlet that scores this privelege, as ...

David Caldwell-Mason

by Jeff Nania August 23, 2012


I don’t know if it’s the fact that his originals are so damn original, or the fact that he takes unlikely pop tunes and makes them sound like they were always his, that makes me ...

Sean Rowe

by David Greenberger August 16, 2012


Last year, ANTI- reissued Sean Rowe’s 2009 Magic, and now comes his first recording created in the spotlight of that album’s success. The Salesman and the Shark makes subtle use of the opportunities that have ...

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Matt Garrison

by Jeff Nania August 16, 2012


You know when you hear something really refreshing and you can’t stop listening to it? Matt Garrison’s sophomore release spun with me on my car rides for weeks because it just wouldn't get dull. Each ...

The Major Lift

by David King August 9, 2012


“Remember the ’90s?” It was the commercial I knew would kill me when I eventually heard it. Just the idea that the music of my teen years would be reduced to a greatest-hits collection to ...

Dr. John

by Mike Hotter July 26, 2012


Shrugged off by some cynics as just a crossover move and a play for cred on the part of the Black Keys’ Dan Auerbach, Dr. John’s Locked Down is soulful and funky in such an ...

Peaking Lights

by Josh Potter July 26, 2012


Reggae, as a genre, used to be a critical punching bag for the indie music upper-crust. It was always a hypocritical pose for those whose tastes skewed to the darker emotions of postpunk to dismiss ...

Beachwood Sparks

by Mike Hotter July 26, 2012

One of the first post-grunge bands to pick up on what dudes like Gene Clark and Gram Parsons were putting down (namely, a soulful melding of country, folk and rock that some have dubbed Cosmic ...

Swamp Baby

by Josh Potter May 24, 2012


In the few short years I’ve lived in the area and reviewed local music, I can’t think of a season in which more top-shelf albums have been released in such quick succession than this spring. ...