…Like Clockwork is one of the year’s finer rock albums — an exercise in songwriting, production, and musicianship.
Its ambrosial melodies and austere instrumentation edify his canon of work, which has long been rewarding for its risky sensibilities and perseverance.
In revisiting those times, in trying to get back in touch with that man, he and the rest of Weezer have created something that’s completely unique to their catalog, a record that tries its damnedest to feel alienated by the conflicts of the past, but discovers that it’s actually at peace with them.
Where Post-Nothing melts into a hazy dream, Celebration Rock does exactly what it claims to do—it burns on and on like the best sort of party.
Sweet Heart, Sweet Light covers a broad aural spectrum from surrealistic haze to outward pop and as such, is some of Jason Pierce’s and Spiritualized’s best material since Ladies and Gentlemen.
With Attack on Memory, Baldi’s never felt more alive or more authentic.
Sleater-Kinney are sick of the rules as they stand, but they don’t just want to break the rules; they want to make new ones. They could only do that by coming back together to reintroduce their own perspective and fight their own battle.
Wasting Light has cornered the kind of ideas that make up the best of the band’s catalog in an earnest attempt to go as big as possible, while staying relatively grounded.
Throughout the record, Cave moves in and out of focus, though always clearly to his own ends ... As an artist, he needed to release the record in just this way in order to process his pain. Skeleton Tree was released for us, but it’s for him.
Their music is suddenly sexier, no doubt a credit to Turner’s vision for AM, and continues to mature.
Sure LCD Soundsystem songs are fun, but they also make you question why they are fun, whether they are actually fun, what fun means, whether we can ever answer these questions, and whether when all is done, are you happy with what you’re doing. It’s meta-party music.
My Woman oozes unhurried glamour and moments of sweeping grandeur. Olsen shifts between genres with graceful precision, breaking down the limiting (and, sometimes, sexist) critiques that have dogged her career.
Transgender Dysphoria Blues will be remembered as a milestone not because it’s the first widely known punk record performed by a trans woman, but because it brandishes a genre saturated by empty, male-centered politics to broadcast the most punk statements possible: Fuck the haters, be who you are, hold fast to those who love you.
They’ve taken some minor risks, tailored their sound, and emerged with a record that can stand confidently beside Boxer and Alligator, all without overdoing or losing any of its predecessors’ merits.
Although Dreaming sports slower, more introspective ballads, there’s also a pantry’s worth of interstellar jams, chock full of sounds you’ve probably never heard before.
The idea behind The Suburbs is simple, if not universal. It’s about aging. Of course it’s deeper than that, but if you were to summarize all the underlying emotions and just cut right to the chase, it’s really about coming to grips with the full package that is growing up.
Blackstar is a battle cry against boredom, a wide-eyed drama set in a world just beyond our scopes. It doesn’t get more Bowie than that.
The more you spin it, the more you wear out that thin needle of your record player, you realize that Granduciel is discovering the problems of his life, not figuring them out or even reflecting on them. This all makes for an album that truly sounds like it’s coming to life.
Currents is all about the wide lens. It’s not the landscape worth falling in love with, but the way Parker gives us a tour. Let it happen, and it will carry you off somewhere much further away than you realized was worth visiting.
On a songwriting level, Mitski — already established as a top-tier songwriter — has outdone herself on Be the Cowboy. The album is full of constructions that are simple, bold, sharp, and generous. She wastes not a single second, every moment is intentional, every instrument employed for a purpose.
Strange Mercy achieves that sweeping goal, delivering on its promises, challenging thematically and intellectually, while also entertaining.
It’s content to expound upon the Vampire Weekend aesthetic in inventive, imaginative, and undeniably successful ways.