Music Reviews

Hot Snakes - Jericho Sirens (Album Review)


Photo: Rick Froberg Few corners of the music world subscribe to the law of diminishing returns quite like reunion albums. They are, broadly, to be treated with suspicion. What are the motives behind them? Does each note contained within sound like a dollar sign rolling around in cartoon eyes? Do the band care? Do we care?

Yo La Tengo - There's A Riot Going On (Album Review)


Since they shuffled onto the stage over 30 years ago, New Jersey’s Yo La Tengo have established themselves as one of the most enduring lo-fi bands on the east coast, creating a catalogue of distinctive shoegaze that has impressed with its subtle diversity.

Mount Eerie - Now Only (Album Review)


Mount Eerie’s Phil Elverum is a musician unlike almost any other. His music, lacking in any perceptible pop structure, plays like a stream of consciousness; raw, without embellishment, and completely devastating. Following the death of his wife, Geneviève, Elverum explored his grief through his work, resulting in the release of a critically acclaimed album, ‘A Crow Looked At Me’.

The Magic Gang - The Magic Gang (Album Review)


Photo: Dan Kendall There’s nothing edgy about the Magic Gang’s self-titled debut. It’s not offensive, it’s not abrasive, it’s not cynical and it certainly isn’t controversial. It’s lacking in a number of seemingly crucial qualities possessed by many classics. And yet that’s precisely why the record feels as fresh as the summer breeze it so often evokes.

The Decemberists - I'll Be Your Girl (Album Review)


Photo: Holly Andres On their eighth studio album, ‘I’ll Be Your Girl’, the Decemberists have taken a substantial risk. To a large extent, their folky, quirky core has disappeared and in its place you’ll find something unusual: synthesizers. In the words of frontman Colin Meloy, they experimented with “a lot of weird keyboards”.

Myles Kennedy - Year of the Tiger (Album Review)


Thanks to the modern trend of cherry picking individual tracks for consumption, crafting a fully-realised album, one that’s both musically and thematically cohesive, is an artform that’s slowly being eroded. Fortunately for those of us who still worship at the altar of this classic format, Myles Kennedy is blissfully unaware of such a sea change.

Gwenno - Le Kov (Album Review)


The dreamy soundscapes that Gwenno offers up on her latest record are as lush as the landscapes that inspired them. Picking up where she left off with the closing track - Amser - on her wonderful solo debut, ‘Y Dydd Olaf’, ‘Le Kov’ has been penned and performed in the Cornish language.

Albert Hammond Jr. - Francis Trouble (Album Review)


Photo: Autumn de Wilde “What the music says may be serious, but as a medium it should not be questioned, analyzed or taken too seriously.”

Nervus - Everything Dies (Album Review)


The title of Nervus’s sophomore album belies an optimistic streak. ‘Everything Dies’ suggests a bleak outlook and little hope of consolation, but throughout the record vocalist and guitarist Em Foster discusses acceptance, both personal and societal, alongside some frank words about insecurity and the damage done by preconceptions.

Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats - Tearing At The Seams


Photo: Brantley Gutierrez Is there anything more invigorating, enlivening and downright sexy than listening to a posse of supremely talented musicians casting their spell? For proof, look no further than the Night Sweats, a sublime backing group who - in tandem with bandleader Nathaniel Rateliff - you’d gladly sell your soul to witness in full flow. Especially if you love vintage Americana ensembles like the Band, Booker T & the M.G.’s and Muscle Shoals rhythm maestros the Swampers.


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