reviews

Review: Rae Sremmurd Flex With Promise and Big-Name Guests on ‘SremmLife’

One of 2014's greatest viral moments came during Solange's wedding afterparty, when the singer and her young son Julez performed a perfectly choreographed routine to…
Brennan Carley / January 7, 2015

Review: Death Grips Rise From the Dead With the Explosive ‘Fashion Week’

It's hard out here for a troll. Are we to believe that maybe once people were used to Death Grips' musical and extracurricular antics both…
Dan Weiss / January 6, 2015

Review: D’Angelo Brings Organic Funk Back to Life on the Epochal ‘Black Messiah’

When D'Angelo sings, "All we wanted was a chance to talk / 'Stead we only got outlined in chalk" on his long-awaited third album, we…
Chris Martins / December 17, 2014

Review: Nicki Minaj Gets Uncomfortably Personal on ‘The Pinkprint’

Earlier this fall, Nicki Minaj announced that she'd need to push back the release date of her third studio album, The Pinkprint, by two weeks. Though…
Brennan Carley / December 16, 2014

Review: Charli XCX Punks Us All With ‘Sucker’

This year was a good one to be Charli XCX, but what no one ever mentions is that the 22-year-old — born Charlotte Aitchison —…
Dan Weiss / December 15, 2014

Review: Smashing Pumpkins’ Satisfyingly Unambitious ‘Monuments to an Elegy’

The ninth Smashing Pumpkins album, the bloatedly titled Monuments to an Elegy, is intended as the second-to-last installment in the band's half-decade-spanning song cycle, Teargarden By…
Andrew Unterberger / December 10, 2014

Review: J. Cole Goes DIY on the Reflective ‘2014 Forest Hills Drive’

"No singles." So decreed J. Cole in mid-November, when word first came of his December surprise. And detractors might nod to themselves, "Mission accomplished." Zero…
Jason Gubbels / December 9, 2014

Review: Ghostface Killah’s ’36 Seasons’ Is Faster Than a Speeding Bullet

About halfway through 36 Seasons, Ghostface Killah gets his face burned off in a crack lab explosion ("Threw him twenty feet in the air," associate…
Theon Weber / December 8, 2014

Review: Wu-Tang Clan Stumble Through Middle Age on ‘A Better Tomorrow’

It's tempting to treat what is being rumored to be the final Wu-Tang Clan album with an unnecessary amount of reverence. On "Felt," Masta Killa…
Martin Douglas / December 2, 2014

Review: Mary J. Blige’s Organic, Heartfelt ‘London Sessions’

Over the past decade, Mary J. Blige has proven her ability to cloak herself in the sounds of the moment, which is why it's hard…
Brennan Carley / December 1, 2014

Review: The Velvet Underground’s Self-Titled ‘Super Deluxe Edition’ Is a Treasure

Devoted legions of Velvet Underground fans have probably heard some or most of what's found on the 45th-anniversary reissue of the band's self-titled 1969 album.
Dan Reilly / November 25, 2014

Review: One Direction Hide in Plain Sight From Boy-Band History With ‘Four’

Four might seem like a boring title, if not an outright cliché at this point, for a new One Direction album. In fact,…
Andrew Unterberger / November 20, 2014

Review: TV on the Radio Make Like Happy Idiots on the Breezy ‘Seeds’

From here, it looks like TV on the Radio's career pivoted the moment Kyp Malone growled, "Fuck your war / Because I'm fat and in…
Theon Weber / November 19, 2014

Review: Ariel Pink Makes Another Wondrous Mess With ‘pom pom’

As Ariel Pink has moved on from no-fi outsider artist to outspoken indie-pop A-lister, his public appearances have tended to skew a little weird. Not…
Colin Joyce / November 18, 2014

Review: Andy Stott’s Beautiful and Brutal Electronic Epic, ‘Faith in Strangers’

Manchester-based electronic producer Andy Stott saw his mainstream exposure (by jagged, ambient techno standards) double with 2012's Luxury Problems, his first album released since he gave…
Andrew Unterberger / November 17, 2014

Review: Foo Fighters’ ‘Sonic Highways’ Is the Missing Link Between Dio And Big Star

These are weird times for alt-rock lifers. During a recent week-long residency on Late Show with David Letterman, the Foo Fighters hauled Zac Brown onstage…
Jason Gubbels / November 11, 2014

Review: Serengeti’s Emmy-Worthy ‘Kenny Dennis III’

The eternal paradox of Chicago rapper Serengeti is that his success is more akin to that of a show like Breaking Bad, and totally anomalous…
Dan Weiss / November 10, 2014

Review: Azealia Banks Silences Haters on Debut ‘Broke With Expensive Taste’

More than three years ago, Azealia Banks introduced her wonky and mystifying style with "212," the brashest hip-hop debut single in years. Today marked 1,151 days…
Brennan Carley / November 6, 2014

Review: Deerhoof’s Delightfully Wonky ‘La Isla Bonita’

Deerhoof is celebrating their 20th anniversary this year — just let that sink in for a minute. Now let's address the ageist elephant in the…
Rachel Brodsky / November 3, 2014

Review: Run the Jewels’ Incendiary ‘Run the Jewels 2′

In a decidedly low-key year for rabble-rousing rap, long-cranky stalwarts El-P and Killer Mike return as the incendiary duo Run the Jewels just in time…
Dan Weiss / October 28, 2014
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