Audio Reviews
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A Russian literary scholar by the name of Victor Shklovsky once wrote that “the purpose of art is to impart the sensation of things as they are perceived and not as they are known. The technique of art is to make objects ‘unfamiliar,’ to make forms difficult, to increase difficulty and length of perception because the process of perception is an aesthetic end in itself and must be prolonged.” ... Continue Reading

Posted: February 18th, 2007

For those of a certain taste, there's nothing quite as rapturous as a rocksteady cover of a soul song. And while there's plenty to choose from, some even surpassing the originals, on Wishbone Jackie Mittoo went beyond homage to perfectly blend the two kindred genres. This achievement should come as no surprise for those familiar with Mittoo's work: having spent his late teens with The Skatalites ... Continue Reading

Posted: February 16th, 2007

Lifetime was one of the best punk bands ever. They had an original sound, played with both passion and precision, and had a swagger all their own. They put out two arguably perfect albums: Hello Bastards and Jersey's Best Dancers, then split up. Obviously, it is easier to create a strong reputation through a successful, brief career than a long, mixed career. But Lifetime guitarist Dan Yemin h ... Continue Reading

Posted: February 15th, 2007

With drums that get down like classic James Brown and bass lines tending toward thick fuzz, it's no wonder beatheads are after this reissue. Throughout the album electronic squalls, squeals, and space age effects abound though these are perfectly balanced by warm crackles and gentle pops that bring to mind summer days discovering your parents' LPs. The collusion of Western psych and funk with t ... Continue Reading

Posted: February 14th, 2007

To call Of Montreal a prolific band is a bit of an understatement. Since the metamorphic pop collective’s inception in 1997, Kevin Barnes &co. (currently: Jamey Huggins, Matt Dawson, Bryan Poole, and Dottie Alexander) have recorded and released eight full-length albums, four EPs, and a handful of other limited edition and/or promotional albums. All told, that works out to nearly 200 individual son ... Continue Reading

Posted: February 11th, 2007

As long as the world spins, people die, lovers love, and perhaps most importantly, lovers leave, the ballad is ne’er likely to be in short supply. You know, the songs that weave a web of sorrow and grief so thick and sweet that you would rather listen to them on repeat whilst wallowing in seemingly endless depression and burrowing in mounds of spent Kleenexes than come to your senses and move on w ... Continue Reading

Posted: February 9th, 2007

In the interests of full disclosure, I want to make it known that I typically have little to no patience for Bloc Party. The music may be all well and good, but I cannot stand the artificial sense of iconoclasm which they seem to promote, or for the arrogance that permeates their official biography, in particular the catch-all final paragraph which (intentionally) fails to give due credit to their ... Continue Reading

Posted: February 4th, 2007

Simply stated, your first experience with Thee More Shallows will change your life. It may not be a religious experience, so don’t expect anything biblical: no pillars of fire and cloud, no trembling earth, no eclipses either solar or lunar, and no choirs of angels descending from on high as the heavens themselves are rent asunder to reveal the smiling face of God in all of His/Her/Its Glory. I ... Continue Reading

Posted: February 3rd, 2007

“Freedom from rules, freedom from constraint / freedom to create anything we make / rivals, we’re without thoughts of never paying / movement, we insist, is always unrestrained.” So begins Dawn of Man’s “A to Z,” a surefire anthem of a single that is buoyed by equal parts independent ideology, bright guitar riffs, and brassy percussion. Frontwoman Alison Russell’s vocals affect a gruff matter-o ... Continue Reading

Posted: February 3rd, 2007

I want to love the Shins, I really do. Over the past ten years, James Russell Mercer &co. have gone from a musical fixture of Albuquerque, NM, to a watershed for the popularization of independent music in the early naught-ies, joining the ranks of scene-friendly household names like Modest Mouse and Death Cab for Cutie while simultaneously sticking it out with an independent label. (Albeit, Sub Po ... Continue Reading

Posted: January 23rd, 2007

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