The strange thing about nostalgia is the surprise factor involved. For example, you can account for a certain song you listened to when you were dating a certain person to dredge up certain memories, but sometimes revisiting albums from the past barely stirs a passing thought. And then there's the stuff for which you can't even account - for...  Read more

More Articles - Reviews

Deerhoof: Deerhoof vs. Evil
What do San Francisco indie rock band Deerhoof and Spanish cello great Pablo Casals have in common? Not much. Except that the lyrics to the opening track of the former's new album, Deerhoof vs. Evil, are sung in Catalan (a regional dialect of parts of Spain and France), where Casals was raised. Mostly, he was a Romantic, imbuing Bach's suites with...  Read more
Wire - Red Barked Tree
It’s hard to criticize a band once they enter their third or fourth decade of existence. Depending on where they fall on the barometer of perceived greatness, they either periodically release albums to the unanimous acclaim of the biggest and most out-of-touch music magazines (see: Rolling Stone’s continuing inability to criticize U2) or they...  Read more
The Decemberists - The King Is Dead
It's easy to fall into a rabbit hole and get lost. If you're Alice, you pursue the White Rabbit and consume the first thing that says "Eat Me"; if you're a 21st century insomniac, you can Google almost anything and spend the next three hours wandering a virtual labyrinth of minutiae; if you're The Decemberists, you tug at the progressive thread...  Read more
Murmuüre - Murmuüre
Over the last couple of years, black metal has turned into something like hipster music — indie, emotive eclectic, often (gasp!) soothing. Nachtmystium has gone punk, Agalloch has gone shoegaze, and suddenly it’s all about meaning it rather than about tearing bloody gobbets from your enemies while wood spirits set fire to your liver. Not that...  Read more
The cover art for Love is a Stream features some hazy, abstract splotches of pastel color, and that’s pretty much exactly what the album delivers. Depending on your perspective, the artwork might suggest a sunrise reflected in a pond, some manner of magnetic resonance imagery, or something in between. The twelve ambient tracks contained within...  Read more
The press materials for Tape Tum’s debut album describe them as “for fans of The Beach Boys, Grizzly Bear and Sparklehorse.” Those are all certainly worthy comparison points, but they’re also the same names you’ll find checked in press releases for about 70% of indie bands working today. So what does this pair of Belgian brothers bring to the...  Read more
Steve Wynn will always be most famous for leading The Dream Syndicate, whose 1982 debut, The Days of Wine and Roses, was a landmark album of the jangle-pop genre and Los Angeles' paisley underground scene, inspiring R.E.M. and Bangles, alike. This is a fine legacy for any musician, but, for many, the idea of Steve Wynn is rooted to this one moment...  Read more
Drudkh’s last album, Microcosm, was a worthy heir to Drukh’s buzzed out, low-fi early work. Like 2003's Forgotten Legends, Microcosmos kept the same fierce soul while polishing the surface production till it gleamed. The result was a vicious collision between black metal, shoegaze, and buried folk tunes. Dense, unrelenting, idiosyncratic, and...  Read more
Is there anyone who has less to prove than Brian Eno? He helped to craft Roxy Music's hip art rock sound, without which large swaths of new wave music would never have existed. Then he invented ambient music, setting ideas in motion that would resonate in the electronica scene for decades to come. He collaborated on David Bowie's "Berlin trilogy...  Read more
ReVoLtReVoLt - Chordada
If the '90s had never happened, Chordada, the debut album from Boise, Idaho's ReVoLtReVoLt, might have been a game changer. But the '90s happened, and while the members of ReVoLtReVoLt obviously know their history and love their forebears, they don't add enough to the equation. Take the album's title track, "Infection." Not a bad song, yes?...  Read more

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