Abigail Everdell

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    Marriage, Anyone? Top 5 Coolest Wedding Songs

    As I enter my mid-20s, weekends marked off for weddings become more and more frequent. In the past two weeks, I've traveled to Vermont and Memphis to see my cousin and brother (respectively) tie the knot. And at least four friends of mine attended other weddings over these same two weekends. But the more of these events I witness, the more disappointed I am at the music played. Why do so many couples believe their first dance must be to a tune that's become a wedding cliché? Does a happy marriage really have to start with "When a Man Loves a Woman," "Unchained Melody," or "It Had to Be You"? Interesting music has never been more available and new love songs are being written all the time, yet the mafia of tried-and-true -- in other words, boring -- choices keep a tight stranglehold on most ceremonies. Enough!

  • Chairlift, 'Does You Inspire You?' (Kanine)

    In 2007, Chairlift moved from Colorado to Brooklyn to pursue a strangely common 21st-century dream -- to create a thoroughly modern indie-pop album inspired by '80s synth-goth kitsch. The result is the trio's startlingly impressive debut: astute, melodic evocations of plinky new wave ("Bruises," "Evident Utensil") and the Cocteau Twins' smeary dreams ("Planet Health") that achieve a timeless emotional resonance.The lyrics can be ungainly ("The most evident utensil is none other than a pencil"? Really?), but when Caroline Polachek's exquisite vocals pierce the fog belt of keyboards and rumbling bass on "Home Alone" and "Make Your Mind Up," the future starts to come into focus. BUY: iTunesAmazon

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    What's Up With Guy Bands Who Call Themselves 'Girls'?

    Weird Trend Alert: Is it just me, or is it wildly unlikely that there are suddenly all these guy bands with the word "Girls" as part of their name? So who are these "Girls"? And where do they get off playing this devious gender trick? We investigate: THE GIRLS HOMETOWN: SeattleYEARS ACTIVE: 7OUTPUT: 2 LPsSOUNDS LIKE: A 12-hour dance party hosted by Ric Ocasek According to the Girls' guitarist Vas, a friend suggested the name to singer Shannon Brown in 2001, and the discussion ended there. "None of us are girls, but we sure at times act like them," Vas explains. "After being in our van for 18 hours, we tend to come onstage wearing women's panties. We're definitely in touch with our feminine sides." But doesn't it ever get you into trouble?

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    Best & Worst of NY's All Tomorrow's Parties Festival

    Every fantasy you ever had of exploring the resort hotel from Dirty Dancing, every furtive wish that you'd someday get the chance to say hi to J Mascis face-to-face, and every hope that you could wander through a surreal reality for days sans chemical assistance came to life this weekend at Kutsher's Country Club, the once-thriving Catskills resort that hasn't seen a coat of paint since its 1980's decline from fashion.

  • Brightblack Morning Light, 'Motion to Rejoin' (Matador)

    New Mexico-based folkie enigmas Nathan "Naybob" Shineywater and Rachael "Raybob" Hughes' second full-length as Brightblack Morning Light is the sound of a peyote comedown after their earlier astral journeys. The minimal, murkily hypnotic, Fender Rhodes–heavy groove of 2006's self-titled breakthrough gives way to more discernible melodies and socially conscious lyrics (see "Oppressions Each"), buoyed by soulful horns and backup vocals. But the angsty psychedelia of "Past a Weatherbeaten Fencepost" -- less meditation than brewing storm -- makes the strongest argument that perhaps these hippie escapists, like their desert compatriot Wile E. Coyote, have finally looked down through the clouds to see the ground hurtling up at them. BUY: iTunesAmazon

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