Album Reviews

Morrissey
Low in High School

Nov 17, 2017 Web Exclusive

Morrissey sure hasn't made things easy on us. As he stumbles, gracelessly, deeper into the 21st Century, the Pope of Mope has given his fans more than enough reason to wince each time they click on a news item about the one-time indie king: chances are he's made an incendiary, ill-thought-out political statement, or has canceled tour dates. 

Fever Ray
Plunge

Nov 16, 2017 Web Exclusive

Eight years is a long time to wait between albums, but in the case of Karin Dreijer's solo project, Fever Ray, it was worth the wait. Half of successful duo The Knife, with brother Olof, and rooted in the same experimental electro pop, Ms. Dreijer's Fever Ray branches out and explores the darker side of glossy and rhythmic electronic music. Those who liked 2009's self-titled debut will love Plunge.

Charlotte Gainsbourg
Rest

Nov 15, 2017 Web Exclusive

Charlotte Gainsbourg sings in both French and English on Rest, her first album in seven years. While the actress and singer previously wrote only in English, intimidated by the superstardom of her late father, French musician Serge Gainsbourg, this linguistic duality brings out haunting layers of mystery on her fifth album.

Comic Book Reviews

Batwoman Vol. 1: The Many Arms of Death
DC

Nov 15, 2017 Issue #62 - Julien Baker

Reading Batwoman is a bit of a frustrating experience, mostly because this mix of interesting ideas and gorgeous art leaves a lot of the potential on the cutting room floor. 

Interviews

Noël Wells on “Mr. Roosevelt”

Nov 17, 2017 Issue #62 - Julien Baker

As if it isn't impressive enough to be a Saturday Night Live alum, or steal scenes from star comic Aziz Ansari as the main love interest in season one of his series Master of NoneNoël Wells is now marking grander milestones. With the new film Mr. Rooseveltthe 30-year-old artsy San Antonian has instantly become a triple threat: Leading lady. Screenwriter. Director.

Benjamin Clementine on “I Tell a Fly”

Nov 16, 2017 Issue #62 - Julien Baker

Benjamin Clementine's life story is absorbing to the point of distraction. Born and raised in London to a family of Ghanaian descent, the self-taught musician emerged from school with almost no qualifications, fell out with his family, and ended up living homeless in London and Paris. It was in the French capital he started down the road that took him to winning the Mercury Prize for his debut At Least for Now in 2015.

Pleased to meet you

Madeline Kenney

Nov 15, 2017 Issue #62 - Julien Baker

"We're all just an amalgamation of salt ions and that's pretty cool," Madeline Kenney says over the phone from her Oakland, California home. It's not a line you'd necessarily expect to hear from a musician, but Kenney is hardly your average singer/songwriter.

Lists

Under the Radar’s Top 50 Albums of 2017 So Far

Jul 13, 2017

In the past we've avoided posting midyear best albums lists. It seemed somehow impatient and premature to evaluate the year's albums halfway through. And how do you decide which period the list covers, which arbitrary release date do you work out is the cut off point, as every midyear list seems to cover a different period? But 2017 is a year that demands a partial evaluation. The first half of the year has already produced enough strong albums to easily fill a Top 50, but also the second half of 2017 is stacked with so many high profile releases that threaten to overshadow some of the gems released so far. For example, we've already heard some August and September releases that we're certain will make the upper echelons of our final best albums of 2017 list come December.

To make this list an album had to be released for the first time (no reissues) somewhere between January 1, 2017 and last Friday, July 7. That means there are some good albums out tomorrow (such as Waxahatchee, Japanese Breakfast, and The Dears) that may made this list had we extended the period that far. Fourteen of our writers and editors (including myself and my co-publisher/wife Wendy Redfern) each submitted a list of their 20 favorite albums released this year thus far. Their number one album was worth 20 points, their number two worth 19 points, and so on until their number 20 album and any honorable mentions were worth one point each. All of that was calculated into the final list. By the way, this year we've interviewed 38 of the artists in the Top 50 and reviewed almost all these albums, so continue reading Under the Radar, both in print and online, for further proof that in-depth music journalism is far from dead. By Mark Redfern

Live reviews

Lydia Loveless at Underground Arts, Philadelphia, PA, November 4, 2017

Nov 10, 2017 By Frank Valish

Lydia Loveless presents a new and improved self to Philadelphia on a beautiful Saturday night.

Blog

My Favorite Movie: Cut Copy on “Fitzcarraldo”

Nov 14, 2017 By Lily Moayeri

The concept for My Favorite Movie is a self-explanatory one, a musician tells us about their favorite film. For this edition we talk to Dan Whitford, frontman for Cut Copy. The Australian band released a new album, Haiku From Zero, back in September via Astralwerks. Here he talks about Fitzcarraldo, Werner Herzog's cult classic from 1982 that starred Klaus Kinski.






Cinema Reviews

Porto

Nov 17, 2017 Web Exclusive

A downbeat, impressionistic deconstruction of love at first sight, Porto is rendered all the more tragic by featuring one of the final performances of Anton Yelchin, who died shortly after the film was completed.

Television Reviews

Will & Grace
NBC, Thursdays 9/8 Central

Sep 28, 2017 Web Exclusive

The revival of Will & Grace or Season 9, depending on how you want to look at it, feels like it picks up right where the show left off, 11 years laterwhich is also the title of the first episodeand that is not a disappointment.