reviews

The Dirtbombs, ‘Party Store’ (In The Red)

Ever since the mid-'90s electronica boom, rock and techno have had a patchy history, at best. But Detroit's Dirtbombs acknowledge their roots in both with…
SPIN Staff / February 1, 2011

Peter Bjorn and John Debut New Album Live

"What we're doing up here is very simple," Peter Moren, singer-guitarist for Swede trio Peter Bjorn and John, said Thursday night onstage in New York…
William Goodman / January 28, 2011

Funeral Party, ‘Golden Age of Knowhere’ (RCA)

Crossing the garage rock of early Strokes with the dance rock of Franz Ferdinand a decade too late, this suburban Los Angeles trio makes a…
Barry Walters / January 26, 2011

Young the Giant, ‘Young the Giant’ (Roadrunner)

These Orange County upstarts' most notable feature isn't their youthful vigor or melting-pot exoticism (members are of Indian, Persian, British, and French-Canadian descent). It's that…
David Menconi / January 26, 2011

Sidi Touré & Friends, ‘Sahel Folk’ (Thrill Jockey)

Recorded leisurely over tea at his sister's place on the southern edge of the Sahara Desert, Sidi Touré's second album is an intimate gem of…
Richard Gehr / January 25, 2011

Review: Iron and Wine, ‘Kiss Each Other Clean’

Iron and Wine's last album, 2007's The Shepherd's Dog, seemed to complete singer-guitarist Sam Beam's journey from spare, black-and-white acoustic sketch artist to full-color aural…
Josh Modell / January 25, 2011

Talib Kweli, ‘Gutter Rainbows’ (Javotti Media/3D)

Brooklyn rapper Talib Kweli has a talent for summing up ambitious concepts in powerfully concise phrases, whether it's 2004's The Beautiful Struggle or 2007's Eardrum.
Mosi Reeves / January 25, 2011

Lia Ices, ‘Grown Unknown’ (Jagjaguwar)

Don't be deterred when Lia Ices coos solemnly, "We know that magic is a part of life." Whether you consider her mystical lyrics transformative poetry…
Jon Young / January 25, 2011

Fujiya & Miyagi, ‘Ventriloquizzing’ (Yep Roc)

What's the difference between "conceptual" and "gimmicky"? On 2006's Transparent Things, this British group were cheeky assimilators, combining a Can-like percussive pulse and deadpan vocals…
Ian Cohen / January 25, 2011

Delicate Steve, ‘Wondervisions’ (Luaka Bop)

Wiry New Jersey goofball "Delicate" Steve Marion handcrafts protean instrumental guitar pop on his debut full-length that isn't delicate in the least. Flush with six-string…
David Bevan / January 25, 2011

Destroyer, ‘Kaputt’ (Merge)

Snarl and murmur would seem to be mutually exclusive, but Destroyer's Dan Bejar manages to do both simultaneously. Long on cryptic references (you mean you…
David Menconi / January 25, 2011

Cloud Nothings, ‘Cloud Nothings’ (Carpark)

The first proper album from Cleveland one-man band Dylan Baldi doesn't match the irresistible energy of last year's odds-and-ends compilation Turning On. But despite trading…
Jon Young / January 25, 2011

Chikita Violenta, ‘Tre3s’ (Arts & Crafts)

This Mexican quartet's third release suggests a largely untapped indie-rock revenue stream: franchising Broken Social Scene's sound to a variety of North American markets. Producer…
Spencer Kornhaber / January 25, 2011

Wanda Jackson, ‘The Party Ain’t Over’ (Third Man/Nonesuch)

The 73-year-old rockabilly trailblazer teams with Jack White, who weirds out in a way he seemed too bashful to do on Van Lear Rose, his…
Mikael Wood / January 25, 2011

Charles Bradley, ‘No Time for Dreaming’ (Dunham)

It'd be easy to mistake Charles Bradley's debutalbum for a lost soul classic, from the throwback cover art to the Otis Redding- and James Brown-inspired…
Josh Modell / January 25, 2011

Death, ‘Spiritual, Mental, Physical’ (Drag City)

When Death's 1974 demos, ...For the Whole World to See, were finally excavated in 2009, they proved the missing link between the Stooges' "No Fun"
SPIN Staff / January 25, 2011

Blaqstarr, ‘The Divine EP’ (N.E.E.T./Interscope)

Charles "Blaqstarr" Smith is still the insular Baltimore club scene's best crossover hope. The ghostly, layered repetition and subwoofer thump of the DJ/producer's 2007 Supastarr…
Marc Hogan / January 25, 2011

Monotonix, ‘Not Yet’ (Drag City)

Midway through one of Monotonix's turbulent performances, you might find yourself spritzed by chest-hair sweat and gaping at a drum set perched on top of…
Spencer Kornhaber / January 25, 2011

Apex Manor, ‘The Year of Magical Drinking’ (Merge)

Battling writer's block after his band the Broken West split, singer-guitarist Ross Flournoy knocked out a tune over a weekend for an NPR songwriting contest.
David Menconi / January 25, 2011

Cold War Kids, ‘Mine Is Yours’ (Downtown)

Having expunged their skittish, dark energy and fully embraced studio slickness, Cold War Kids are left stranded, sounding like a band aiming for the charts…
Josh Modell / January 25, 2011
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