reviews

Review: Ex-Danity Kane Divas Become Pop Smart-Asses on Dumblonde’s Eponymous Debut

Danity Kane's too-simple songs were clearly designed more for mass consumption than artistic vision. But in spite of their success (two gold records, both of…
Thomas Inskeep / October 6, 2015

Review: Autre Ne Veut’s Gleefully Overwrought ‘Age of Transparency’

Think about the juxtaposition of two phrases regarding the previous Autre Ne Veut album in 2013: There’s Arthur Ashin’s nom de PBR&B which translates from…
Dan Weiss / October 6, 2015

Review: Protomartyr See Life Through to Its Lack of Conclusion on ‘The Agent Intellect’

Protomartyr are heavy, man. Not in the sense of being derived from lightning Slayer shredding or doomsday Sabbath churn — though with their scaling guitar…
Andrew Unterberger / October 6, 2015

Review: Spencer Radcliffe Marches to the Beat of His Own Drum Machine on ‘Looking In’

Bandcamp's dregs are lined with the labors of uncountable singer/songwriters who possess a stack of Death Cab records and a dream. Spencer Radcliffe has been…
Colin Joyce / October 5, 2015

Review: Kelela Cuts Open Her Soul 4 Us on Lustrous ‘Hallucinogen’ EP

"I like the view from on top," Kelela taunts on the ghostly trap-noir track "Gomenasai" off of the new Hallucinogen EP, her voice floating higher until it disappears like…
Harley Brown / October 5, 2015

SPIN Metal Report: Spectral Wound’s Black Metal Sleeper Hit, Lluvia’s Poetic Simplicity

The warmer months of 2015 were a metalhead’s dream, whether their chosen poison lies festering underground or comes plastered across billboards and magazine covers. The…
Kim Kelly / October 2, 2015

Review: Janet Jackson’s Making Sexier Music Than Ever on ‘Unbreakable’

Fan fiction: It’s 1985, and an apple-cheeked Janet Jackson perches on a chair across from her father. "You could be big as Madonna," he says.
Rebecca Haithcoat / October 2, 2015

Review: Kylesa Perfect Their Psychedelic Space-Metal on ‘Exhausting Fire’

My first exposure to Kylesa came secondhand. I kept seeing their blocky, rough-hewn logo plastered across Philly bike messengers’ sweaty chests, and became familiar with…
Kim Kelly / September 30, 2015

Review: Deafheaven Turn Black Metal All Different Colors on ‘New Bermuda’

Deafheaven have been the subject of many bold proclamations, to the point where merely having any opinion about them is draining. Here is one take…
Andy O'Connor / September 29, 2015

Review: Girl Band Abrade and Explode on First Full-Length ‘Holding Hands With Jamie’

After signing with Rough Trade, Dublin foursome Girl Band could have coasted complacently on their comparatively inoffensive 2012 debut, France 98, but instead, to their…
Adrien Begrand / September 28, 2015

Review: Childbirth Gleefully Skewer Men’s Wrongs on ‘Women’s Rights’

"Feminists don’t have a sense of humor," smirked pianist-polymath and lifelong activist Nellie McKay on her 2009 song "Mother of Pearl," a line that her…
Dan Weiss / September 28, 2015

Review: Disclosure Shoot For the Stars, Land in the Middle of the Road on ‘Caracal’

Disclosure's landmark 2013 debut, Settle, opened with a scorched-earth policy. On "When a Fire Starts to Burn," Guy and Howard Lawrence set a hammering, breakneck tempo for a…
Harley Brown / September 25, 2015

Review: Fetty Wap’s ‘Fetty Wap’ Is as Weird and Catchy as His Hits

Save for deepening the entrenchment of kaleidoscopic, Atlanta-schooled synth work as rap production's de rigueur modality, Fetty Wap's hospitable takeover of the charts over the…
Colin Joyce / September 25, 2015

Review: The Dead Weather Aren’t Anyone’s Side Project on ‘Dodge and Burn’

What Alison Mosshart and Jack White ultimately share is the idea that rock’n’roll means great sound effects above all else. The guitars they adorn their…
Dan Weiss / September 24, 2015

Review: CHVRCHES Explore the Pleasures and Limitations of Synth-Pop on ‘Every Open Eye’

CHVRCHES devote themselves to early-'80s British synth-pop the way some bands devote themselves to the blues. On their sophomore album, the cavernous synths of Tears…
Theon Weber / September 24, 2015

Review: Steve Hauschildt Makes Music for Sleepwalking on ‘Where All Is Fled’

New Age started as a musical genre with a functional purpose. Long before Mike Oldfield was disguising platinum-selling instrumentals in a shimmering haze of gauze…
Colin Joyce / September 23, 2015

Review: Drake and Future Define 2015 Rap for Better and Worse on ‘What a Time to Be Alive’

What a Time to Be Alive is not the best album of 2015, but it is the album that best defines 2015 so far. After…
Matthew Ramirez / September 22, 2015

Review: God Knows Lana Del Rey Tried on ‘Honeymoon’

"Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood," the final song and only cover on Lana Del Rey's wistfully catatonic third LP, Honeymoon, has — like the singer formerly…
Harley Brown / September 22, 2015

Review: Natasha Khan Is Not Out of the Woods on SEXWITCH’s ‘SEXWITCH’

Natasha Khan has always been a bit of a witch. The British singer came out glitter-streaked and face-painted on Bat for Lashes' debut Fur and…
Hazel Cills / September 21, 2015

Review: Kurt Vile Levitates on the Desert-Warmed ‘b’lieve i’m goin down…’

"I could be one thousand miles away / But still mean what I say." That’s a line that many reviews of the latest Kurt Vile…
Kyle McGovern / September 21, 2015
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