Album Reviews

  1. Musical Pairings: Cuushe – Butterfly Case

    The lead single “I Love You” from Berlin-by-way-of-Kyoto dream pop songstress Cuushe‘s latest album makes a great first impression. At least it did for me. The mesmerizing groove slowly simmers with bubbling disco synths and a pulsating rhythm to accompany Cuushe’s flowing, effervescent vocals as she sweetly murmurs “I love you” over and over again. When Continue…

  2. Musical Pairings: DARKSIDE – Psychic

    DARKSIDE is the project of minimalist producer Nicolas Jaar and multi-instrumentalist Dave Harrington. Before they formed DARKSIDE, Jaar was already critically acclaimed for his minimalist, thoughtfully paced house-inspired grooves. Meanwhile, Harrington was a student of experimental jazz with experience directing a rendition of John Zorn’s COBRA and producing commissioned works for theater and film. However Continue…

  3. Musical Pairings: White Denim – Corsicana Lemonade

    If I could level a complaint against Texas-based garage-rockers White Denim, it’d be that their recordings have rarely matched the high-voltage energy of their exuberant and fiery live shows. It’s worth noting, as a mitigating factor, the fact that their live shows are amongst the best in contemporary rock ‘n roll and it’d be hard Continue…

  4. Musical Pairings: Widowspeak – The Swamps

    Languorous and sultry, at its heart all of Widowspeak‘s output to date can be characterized as warm, sensual and comforting. That’s why their choice to tackle the oft-covered Chris Isaak track “Wicked Game” was perfect. On a conceptual level, it served as a concise thesis statement for their music. And although their sound has evolved over Continue…

  5. TK026: Local Natives – Palms b/w Wooly Mammoth

    You probably already know that Local Natives are one of the most compelling and consistently rewarding bands in the country, but what you may not have known is that they are also one of the nicest as well. Between massive headlining tours of the United States and Europe (including a taping for Austin City Limits) in Continue…

  6. Musical Pairings: Mutual Benefit – Love’s Crushing Diamond

    It’s no exaggeration to say that Love’s Crushing Diamond by Jordan Lee, who records as Mutual Benefit, may be the most beautiful record you’ll hear all year. Lee’s lyrics are intimate, poetic, and heart-warming; often filled with Buddhist-like musings on life and relationships: “I clear my mind of joy and sorrow / river doesn’t know tomorrow / Continue…

  7. Musical Pairings: Willis Earl Beal – Nobody Knows.

    Willis Earl Beal is one of those entertainers who you could obsess over just because of his personality. Put bluntly, he’s a little “off.” He’s stated in interviews that he joined the military because he thought it’d help him be more like Batman. Partially inspired by Jack Kerouac, he spent several months sleeping homeless on Continue…

  8. Musical Pairings: Zachary Cale – Blue Rider

    Let’s be honest, there are a LOT of derivative singer-songwriters out there that compose boring, insipid 60′s folk-inspired riffs on worn out acoustic guitars. Indeed, for many music fans the label “singer-songwriter” alone is a cue to prep a snarky, derisive sneer. Nonetheless, despite a glut of less talented songwriters, artists like Justin Vernon, Sam Continue…

  9. TK025: Army Navy – Crushed Like The Car b/w Pack Of Dogs

    There is something strangely life affirming about a melancholy power pop tune built with pummeling percussion and big, reverb-soaked guitars. And although that may seem counterintuitive, I think it’s safe to say that this month’s featured band Army Navy knows exactly what I’m talking about. After his former band Pinwheel (which had included Death Cab Continue…

  10. Musical Pairings: Neko Case – The Worse Things Get, The Harder I Fight…

    Over the course of a hard earned career, Neko Case has become one of independent music’s most ambitious and highly regarded songwriters. She’s a fiercely intelligent lyricist and both thoughtful and craftsmanlike as a songwriter. And, to top it off, she has a remarkably powerful voice that’s comparable to beautiful, rootsy vocalists like Patsy Cline Continue…

  11. Musical Pairings: Washed Out – Paracosm

    According to Wikipedia, a paracosm is “a detailed imaginary world, or fantasy world, involving humans and/or animals, or perhaps even fantasy or alien creations.” In other words, it’s an imaginary place where one goes to escape from the challenges of daily life. With that in mind, Paracosm is an apt title then for Ernest Greene’s most recent Continue…

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