Returning with Majesty Shredding, their first full-length release in almost a decade, the underground legends don’t waste any time proving that they haven’t lost a single step
Whatever the case, we finally have My Father Will Guide Me Up a Rope to the Sky to judge, and—whatever baggage it might carry—what a gift it turns out to be.
“See, you don’t want to fall in love with me,” drawls the inimitable Erykah Badu to her potential suitors in “Fall in Love (Your Funeral)”. “Prepare to have your sh*t rearranged the way I say,” she warns. “You’ve got to change jobs… and change gods,” she taunts. With a nod to the Notorious B.I.G.‘s classic line from Ready to Die‘s “Warning”, Badu lays the smack down, “There’s gonna be some slow singin’ and flower bringin’ if my burglar alarm starts ringin’.”
Justin Townes Earle confidently writes and performs these 10+ songs as if he’s singing about life back in Tennessee instead of the Big Apple, and does this so damn convincingly that you believe him.
Although Forget might not usher in a new musical era, it’s a near-flawless album and certainly one of the most impressive debuts we’ve ever seen.
Bingham’s work on the Crazy Heart soundtrack found him working with producer T-Bone Burnett, who produced Bingham’s third album, the new Junky Star. This is Bingham’s record, a showcase for his tightening songwriting and singular vocals, but it also carries all the hallmarks of a Burnett project, which means, of course, that it sounds terrific.
The good news for Drive-By Truckers fans is that their new album The Big To-Do rarely strays from what the band does best. The bad news is band’s lyrics are taking on a far greater resonance for millions who have lost their jobs and homes in the Great Recession.
That Young takes risks with his music at this stage in his career is remarkable enough; that this one has paid off so handsomely is nothing short of spectacular.
Caribou carries through pretty deftly, striking far more often than he misses.
The Guitar Song quite firmly cements Johnson's place at the forefront of today's country music songwriters, performers, and singers.
Instead, there’s a conflation of sexual politics and the very real violence of power on Grinderman 2 that makes it as unnerving as it is invigorating to listen to.
Like its concluding song, The Age of Adz is occasionally transfixing, but overall inconsistent.
It’s too bad really, that Have One on Me is so overdone because there’s a decent album hidden somewhere in there. It’s an album the Newsom we saw in 2006 would have found, formed, and made shine.
Halcyon Digest is, to my mind, the best we’ve seen from Deerhunter, and a hint that their best is still to come.
While part of Sleigh Bells’ appeal has to do with its bold inventiveness, a lot more of it has to be chalked up to the air of invincibility that comes through in the duo’s bruising, high-impact sound, which elicits a visceral reaction that gets you to really feel its excesses and indulge in them.
Since Super Taranta!, Gogol Bordello’s excellent 2007 breakthrough, the band has built plenty of hot anticipation for a follow-up by earning a reputation as one of rock’s most combustible live bands. Along the way, they caught the ear of goldsmith-guru Rick Rubin, who has produced their fifth album, Trans-continental Hustle.
Last year’s war of words between the Flaming Lips’ Wayne Coyne and Arcade Fire front man Win Butler was, at the time, an enjoyable diversion. Although Coyne’s comments (about what he perceived as arrogance in Butler’s crew) seemed somewhat impolite and petty, the flare-up between the two acts injected some energy and fun into a modern rock scene that is too often stuffy and image-conscious. Butler responded, Coyne apologized then retracted his apology, and finally the whole affair died down. Both bands continued to sell records and make money.
But it is the heart, soul, and humanity of My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy that ultimately marks it as the defining pop moment of 2010.
Flying Lotus, much like Yorke, Greenwood & Co., has made a definitive summary of a decade’s worth of advances in electronic music, a release that transcends genre and deserves to become a glorified phenomena by those who experience it.
High Violet summons up perfectly and terribly the sneaking suspicion you start getting in your 20s that possibilities are closing off, that your life might not turn out the way you wanted it to, and that there’s probably no-one else to blame but yourself.
Suite II boasts a range of moods and musical styles that could be released on its own. Suite III, while maintaining the quality of the other Suites, wouldn’t be my choice for a standalone release—largely because it’s really strange.