Back to top.
Posts tagged album review.
Zoom ARCADE FIRE
Reflektor
8 out of 10
Arcade Fire are the closest thing we have to a huge arena rock band in 2013, a fact not lost on the Montreal-based collective, who’ve returned after 2010′s Grammy-winning The Suburbs with a colossal, 75-minute double LP that’s the most diverse and challenging thing they’ve attempted yet. The stigma of going from one of indie rock’s most beloved commodities to huge major label draws can be daunting, especially in the wake of massive expectations. Arcade Fire, though, are at a point in their careers where just about anything is possible. They could probably continue in the vein of The Suburbs for years and fans would be pleased, but if the release of Reflektor has made anything clear, it’s that Arcade Fire have developed a sense of humor. 
READ FULL REVIEW HERE!

ARCADE FIRE

Reflektor

8 out of 10

Arcade Fire are the closest thing we have to a huge arena rock band in 2013, a fact not lost on the Montreal-based collective, who’ve returned after 2010′s Grammy-winning The Suburbs with a colossal, 75-minute double LP that’s the most diverse and challenging thing they’ve attempted yet. The stigma of going from one of indie rock’s most beloved commodities to huge major label draws can be daunting, especially in the wake of massive expectations. Arcade Fire, though, are at a point in their careers where just about anything is possible. They could probably continue in the vein of The Suburbs for years and fans would be pleased, but if the release of Reflektor has made anything clear, it’s that Arcade Fire have developed a sense of humor. 

READ FULL REVIEW HERE!

12.04.13 3
Zoom CULTS
Static
6 out of 10
When Cults dropped their eponymous debut back in 2011, it seemed as if vocalist Madeline Follin and co-vocalist/percussionist Brian Oblivion’s homage to 60′s pop, doo-wop, and a Phil Spector-esque production might trip over it’s own twee preoccupations. Truthfully, it’s surprising that the duo even made another record, not only just because that debut felt like the kind of summertime album that captures a time and place and then gradually drifts away, but also because Follin and Oblivion went through a romantic breakup in the interim. 
READ FULL REVIEW HERE!

CULTS

Static

6 out of 10

When Cults dropped their eponymous debut back in 2011, it seemed as if vocalist Madeline Follin and co-vocalist/percussionist Brian Oblivion’s homage to 60′s pop, doo-wop, and a Phil Spector-esque production might trip over it’s own twee preoccupations. Truthfully, it’s surprising that the duo even made another record, not only just because that debut felt like the kind of summertime album that captures a time and place and then gradually drifts away, but also because Follin and Oblivion went through a romantic breakup in the interim. 

READ FULL REVIEW HERE!

10.30.13 0
Zoom MGMT
MGMT
7 out of 10
For better or worse, Ben Goldwasser and Andrew VanWyngarden will forever be haunted by hit singles like “Time To Pretend”, “Kids”, and “Electric Feel” from their wildly successful 2008 debut Oracular Spectacular. On 2010′s wicked left hook of a followup Congratulations, MGMT aggressively pushed away anything resembling pop hits, embracing neo-pysch, Brit-pop, and sprawling lo-fi weirdness to divisive effect. The duo claims that those hipster-approved dance anthems from their first outing were mistakes, as if crafting songs that catchy were some kind of lab experiment gone awry.
READ FULL REVIEW HERE!

MGMT

MGMT

7 out of 10

For better or worse, Ben Goldwasser and Andrew VanWyngarden will forever be haunted by hit singles like “Time To Pretend”, “Kids”, and “Electric Feel” from their wildly successful 2008 debut Oracular Spectacular. On 2010′s wicked left hook of a followup Congratulations, MGMT aggressively pushed away anything resembling pop hits, embracing neo-pysch, Brit-pop, and sprawling lo-fi weirdness to divisive effect. The duo claims that those hipster-approved dance anthems from their first outing were mistakes, as if crafting songs that catchy were some kind of lab experiment gone awry.

READ FULL REVIEW HERE!

10.08.13 1
Zoom CHELSEA WOLFE
Pain is Beauty
8 out of 10
On 2011′s Apokalypsis, Sacramento-native Chelsea Wolfe submerged herself inside a wormhole of feedback, spooky atmospherics, and echo-chambered vocals that signaled a descent into the subterranean underworld. It was one hell of an album; dense, disorienting, and for all the “doom folk” descriptors thrown its way, surprisingly beautiful. It’s as if Wolfe used her inner trauma in order to forge a way toward redemption, conjuring erie fable-like tales of destruction and gloom that nonetheless held out the possibility for hope. On her fourth album proper Pain is Beauty, Wolfe subverts accusations that she’s essentially making Twilight soundtracks for the art crowd with a seminal statement of brooding romanticism.
READ FULL REVIEW HERE!

CHELSEA WOLFE

Pain is Beauty

8 out of 10

On 2011′s Apokalypsis, Sacramento-native Chelsea Wolfe submerged herself inside a wormhole of feedback, spooky atmospherics, and echo-chambered vocals that signaled a descent into the subterranean underworld. It was one hell of an album; dense, disorienting, and for all the “doom folk” descriptors thrown its way, surprisingly beautiful. It’s as if Wolfe used her inner trauma in order to forge a way toward redemption, conjuring erie fable-like tales of destruction and gloom that nonetheless held out the possibility for hope. On her fourth album proper Pain is Beauty, Wolfe subverts accusations that she’s essentially making Twilight soundtracks for the art crowd with a seminal statement of brooding romanticism.

READ FULL REVIEW HERE!

10.03.13 1
Zoom -MUSIC PICK OF THE WEEK-
Bass Drum of Death
Bass Drum of Death
Mississippi-born John Barrett is a one-man garage-rock wrecking crew. His self-produced debut, 2011′s GB City was a bratty rush of lo-fi production, snarling vocals, and punkish energy. For his self-titled sophomore release, Barrett has tightened up the songwriting and along with the help of drummer Len Clark, cranked out some stellar tunes that offer a bit more variation.CHECK OUT FULL REVIEW HERE!

-MUSIC PICK OF THE WEEK-

Bass Drum of Death

Bass Drum of Death

Mississippi-born John Barrett is a one-man garage-rock wrecking crew. His self-produced debut, 2011′s GB City was a bratty rush of lo-fi production, snarling vocals, and punkish energy. For his self-titled sophomore release, Barrett has tightened up the songwriting and along with the help of drummer Len Clark, cranked out some stellar tunes that offer a bit more variation.

CHECK OUT FULL REVIEW HERE!

08.20.13 1
Zoom DAFT PUNK
Random Access Memories
6 out of 10
Daft Punk’s Random Access Memories counts as something of a bona fide event within the music industry. This is really saying something, what with the fickle internet culture and it’s proclivity for advance hype and digital pirating blowing up since the french duo released their last album, Human After All in 2005. The idea that Thomas Bangalter and Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo, known for donning robot helmets and making cryptic press statements, would release a massively expensive album (some estimates say Sony spent over a million dollars producing and marketing this behemoth), and engage in interviews in which they seemed to condemn the use of synthesizers, came as something of a shock to longtime fans.
READ FULL REVIEW HERE

DAFT PUNK

Random Access Memories

6 out of 10

Daft Punk’s Random Access Memories counts as something of a bona fide event within the music industry. This is really saying something, what with the fickle internet culture and it’s proclivity for advance hype and digital pirating blowing up since the french duo released their last album, Human After All in 2005. The idea that Thomas Bangalter and Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo, known for donning robot helmets and making cryptic press statements, would release a massively expensive album (some estimates say Sony spent over a million dollars producing and marketing this behemoth), and engage in interviews in which they seemed to condemn the use of synthesizers, came as something of a shock to longtime fans.

READ FULL REVIEW HERE

07.29.13 2
Zoom -MUSIC PICK OF THE WEEK-KYLESA
Ultraviolet 
Georgia has birthed some of the best metal bands of recent years, including Mastodon and Baroness. Maybe it’s the swamp-infested terrain or the murky climate changes, but whatever the reason, the state has given rise to a stellar hybridization of metal that continues to morph. Savannah five-piece Kylesa have always been hard to pin down genre-wise; combining sludge, crust-punk, pysch, and on their latest LP Ultraviolet, even elements of 90′s-tinged alt-rock. 
READ FULL REVIEW HERE

-MUSIC PICK OF THE WEEK-

KYLESA

Ultraviolet 

Georgia has birthed some of the best metal bands of recent years, including Mastodon and Baroness. Maybe it’s the swamp-infested terrain or the murky climate changes, but whatever the reason, the state has given rise to a stellar hybridization of metal that continues to morph. Savannah five-piece Kylesa have always been hard to pin down genre-wise; combining sludge, crust-punk, pysch, and on their latest LP Ultraviolet, even elements of 90′s-tinged alt-rock.
 

READ FULL REVIEW HERE

07.03.13 1
Zoom -MUSIC PICK OF THE WEEK-
Beaches
She Beats
Melbourne, Australia’s Beaches have been labeled neo-psych, shoegaze, dream pop, drone, and any other descriptor one can think of spanning from the 60′s to the 90′s. On sophomore LP She Beats, the all-female five-piece lay down a restrained, though at times still aggressive, wall of rambling guitars that ebb and flow brilliantly. 
READ FULL REVIEW HERE

-MUSIC PICK OF THE WEEK-

Beaches

She Beats

Melbourne, Australia’s Beaches have been labeled neo-psych, shoegaze, dream pop, drone, and any other descriptor one can think of spanning from the 60′s to the 90′s. On sophomore LP She Beats, the all-female five-piece lay down a restrained, though at times still aggressive, wall of rambling guitars that ebb and flow brilliantly. 

READ FULL REVIEW HERE

06.17.13 3
Zoom -MUSIC PICK OF THE WEEK-
Blu/Madlib/M.e.d.
The Burgundy EP
Underground rappers Blu and M.E.D. have already collaborated with each other as well as hip-hop producer extraordinaire Madlib on separate projects before, so it comes as little surprise that eventually all three would join forces. The results of their labor, The Burgundy EP, is a mishmash of neo-soul atmosphere, fragmented hip-hop beats, jazz-inflected instrumentation, and laid back rapping.
READ FULL REVIEW HERE

-MUSIC PICK OF THE WEEK-

Blu/Madlib/M.e.d.

The Burgundy EP

Underground rappers Blu and M.E.D. have already collaborated with each other as well as hip-hop producer extraordinaire Madlib on separate projects before, so it comes as little surprise that eventually all three would join forces. The results of their labor, The Burgundy EP, is a mishmash of neo-soul atmosphere, fragmented hip-hop beats, jazz-inflected instrumentation, and laid back rapping.

READ FULL REVIEW HERE

05.07.13 2
Zoom THE STROKES
Comedown Machine
6 out of 10
Anyone thinking for a moment that The Strokes want to be the same band that catapulted to fame 12 years ago after their auspicious debut Is This It? floored listeners, should really wake up. Even though 2003′s sophomore album Room On Fire was a critical and commercial success, the tide started to change with the release of 2006′s First Impressions of Earth, an album that was more experimental and sprawling than anything they had attempted before, resulting in the band’s first legitimate critical and financial misfire. Since the early 2000s, the genre known as “garage rock” has been gone the cyclical route of becoming nearly meaningless. With so many bands trying to emulate the sound that The Strokes more or less popularized, and with the advent of digital streaming, downloading, and the economic collapse, it seemed the band that was once heralded as the next big thing in rock was perilously close to becoming irrelevant.
READ FULL REVIEW HERE

THE STROKES

Comedown Machine

6 out of 10

Anyone thinking for a moment that The Strokes want to be the same band that catapulted to fame 12 years ago after their auspicious debut Is This It? floored listeners, should really wake up. Even though 2003′s sophomore album Room On Fire was a critical and commercial success, the tide started to change with the release of 2006′s First Impressions of Earth, an album that was more experimental and sprawling than anything they had attempted before, resulting in the band’s first legitimate critical and financial misfire. Since the early 2000s, the genre known as “garage rock” has been gone the cyclical route of becoming nearly meaningless. With so many bands trying to emulate the sound that The Strokes more or less popularized, and with the advent of digital streaming, downloading, and the economic collapse, it seemed the band that was once heralded as the next big thing in rock was perilously close to becoming irrelevant.

READ FULL REVIEW HERE

05.02.13 5