Album Reviews

In Camera
Era

Jul 03, 2015 Web Exclusive

Era collects everything obscure post-punks In Camera recorded during their original 19781981 run. This amounts to a few singles, a Peel session, demos, and a handful of live recordings/rehearsals.

Bully
Feels Like

Jul 02, 2015 Web Exclusive

If there is one aspect of Bully's breathless, hyperactive sound that befits their moniker on Feels Like, it is Alicia Bognanno's gloriously ragged power-tool of a voiceshrieking and rasping from amongst the dark corners and feedback of the record to force your ears against the lyrics in a way that the most compelling singers always do.

Outfit
Slowness

Jul 01, 2015 Web Exclusive

With their debut Performance, Outfit opened two possible creative paths. They easily could have cranked it up a notch and followed it up with a dance-fused electronic record brimming with melody and pop bliss. Or turned their sound inward, for a more focused and elegant exploration of the darker musical themes introduced on their debut.

Classic Interviews

Absinthe Blind

Absinthe Blind
Full Interview Transcription

Mar 01, 2003 Spring 2003 - Elliott Smith

The guys (and girl) of Absinthe Blind are the most humble group of musicians in the world. When you meet good people you can just feel it and every member of this Champagne-Urbana, Illinois quintet is someone you would gladly have sit at your dinner table.

Comic Book Reviews

Justice League 3001 #1
DC

Jul 03, 2015 Web Exclusive

Justice League 3001 is a blast from the past, set in the future. Veteran DC Comics readers old enough to remember the Justice League International series of the late 1980s—or those who bought the reprinted, collected trades much more recently—surely recall the light-hearted, humorous take on the universe's greatest heroes employed by writing duo Keith Giffen and J.M. DeMatteis.

Book Reviews

Edited by George McKay
The Pop Festival: History, Music, Media, Culture

Jun 29, 2015 Web Exclusive

In The Pop Festival, the music festival is put under the scholarly microscope in 14 separate essays, each written by a scholar in his or her field and taking on a particular aspect of the “festival” in all its different iterations.

Interviews

Tame Impala - The Under the Radar Cover Story Bonus Q&A

Jul 03, 2015 Issue #53 - April/May 2015 - Tame Impala

Kevin Parker can't take a compliment. He has just offered me his creative philosophy, explaining how artists are at their best when they move away from the parts of their craft that they've already mastered and move toward the parts that remain just beyond their reach.

Tame Impala - The Under the Radar Cover Story

Jul 02, 2015 Issue #53 - April/May 2015 - Tame Impala

It's Saturday morning in early March in Perth, and Kevin Parker's normally laid-back demeanor is beginning to crack. He has five days to finish up his third Tame Impala record—mastering sessions begin in New York City on Wednesday—and over half of the album's songs are still incomplete. 

Pleased to meet you

Tobias Jesso Jr.

Jun 26, 2015 Issue #53 - April/May 2015 - Tame Impala

At six feet seven inches tall, Tobias Jesso Jr. tends to literally stand out in most situations. Having such a noticeable physical frame, however, failed to keep Jesso from being mistaken for a speed bump. 

Lists

Ranked: Björk (Her Albums From Most to Least Accessible)

Apr 20, 2015

An Introductory Guide To Björk's Strange and Beautiful Career

Björk is Iceland's most celebrated musical export. She's been singing since childhood, and gained prominence in the '80s as frontwoman for The Sugarcubes. She left that band in the early '90s to pursue a solo career, driven mostly by her unparalleled creative output. Björk is known for pushing boundaries both sonically and visually, leaving a trail of strange and beautiful works throughout her long and impressive career.

 

Her latest album, Vulnicura, is but another milestone for Björk. As with anyone who's been around so long and made such an impact, diving headfirst into her back-catalog is a little daunting. Björk's work is ethereal, modern, abstract, and whimsical. In another word, intimidating.

 

Björk's work isn't all oblique and avant garde. At the very core of her discography is an inventive pop performer, and her music is always centered on the sheer power and versatility of her voice. It is impossible to rank her albums on quality alone, since they rarely deviate from a standard her fans expect. Instead, this list will serve as more of a guide for those who know they need to listen to Björk, but have put it off too long and don't know where to begin. I will attempt to set out a path that will ease the listener into Björk's world, starting with her most accessible record, leading into her more challenging work. I stuck to her adult studio albums (so no self-titled 1977 album recorded when she was 11) and didn't include her two soundtracks (2000's Selmasongs and 2005's Drawing Restraint 9). Here we go. By Cody Ray Shafer

Blog

Anatomy of a Song: Barði Jóhannsson of Bang Gang on “My Special One”

Jun 26, 2015 By Barði Jóhannsson

A song is a chance overlapping of countless variables in an artist's life. Anatomy of a Song is a place where those variables can be dissected and examined. In this edition, Barði Jóhannsson (aka Bang Gang) discusses the track "My Special One" from his new album, The Wolves are Whispering, which was released this week on Bang Ehf.  






Cinema Reviews

Jimmy’s Hall

Jul 03, 2015 Web Exclusive

Jimmy’s Hall joins Swing Kids and Desert Dancer in a sort of subgenre of politically-charged dance movies.

DVD Reviews

Hero and The Terror
Studio: Kino Lorber Studio Classics

Jul 01, 2015 Web Exclusive

Chuck Norris plays a cop named Danny O’Brien—nicknamed “Hero”—who became a celebrity when he put away notorious serial killer Simon Moon, nicknamed—you can probably guess it—“The Terror.”

Television Reviews

Scream
MTV, Tuesdays 10/9 Central

Jun 30, 2015 Web Exclusive

The mask is different, as is the cast of characters in MTV's small screen adaptation of Wes Craven and Kevin Williamson's glorious slasher-film franchise, but the heart is the same. Set in the modern age of texting, cyber-bullying, and viral videos,