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Monthly Archive for July, 2012

“Exorcizing the ghost of a failed relationship via the time-honored tradition of the breakup album, Norah Jones luxuriates in beautiful misery on Little Broken Hearts. Liberated by the separation but not quite ready to let it go, Jones achieves a curious subdued tension here, dressing unadorned confessionals in softly stylized studio noir.”–All Music Guide Check [...]

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Bonnie Raitt: Slipstream

“Raitt’s voice has never sounded better. She’s expanded her lower range with an expressiveness that is soulful, rich, and rings emotionally true — though she’s sacrificed none of her higher register. Her voice can command and reveal a devastating tenderness. Slipstream reveals Raitt at another creative peak.”–All Music guide Check Our Catalog

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Rita Wilson: AM/FM

“Long a star of screen and stage, the latter being a showcase for her vocal talents, Rita Wilson launched a music career in 2012 with AM/FM, a collection of pop classics from the ’60s and ’70s.”–All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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Scissor Sisters: Magic Hour

“While Magic Hour may not be as satisfying to fans who just wanna dance as albums like Night Work and Scissor Sisters were, it should please those who enjoy the band’s formidable songwriting skills as much as cutting a rug — and at the very least, it reaffirms that Scissor Sisters still have more depth [...]

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Lionel Richie: Tuskegee

“Lionel Richie’s birthplace is Tuskegee, Alabama so for his 2012 country duets album, Tuskegee, he is trumpeted as the country boy returning to his roots.”–All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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Carrie Underwood: Blown Away

“Dispensing with any pretense that Underwood remains a down-home country girl — the kind who takes carnival rides and sticks a daisy in her hair — Blown Away is an unabashed glossy pop album, positioning Carrie as the heir to Shania Twain and Faith Hill’s country diva act.”–All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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Lisa Marie Presley: Storm & Grace

Presley’s first two albums sounded like the work of someone who thought making a record might be a good idea, but Storm & Grace feels like music she genuinely wanted to make, and if Presley’s deep, breathy vocal style still doesn’t boast much range, she sounds at once relaxed and fully engaged here, comfortable with [...]

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Adam Lambert: Trespassing

“Three years removed from American Idol, Adam Lambert is finally allowed to shake off the pageantry of the televised talent competition and dive into glitter on his second major-label album. Even if these songs never grace the charts, they sound like inevitable hits and prove that Lambert is a genuine pop star who has now [...]

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Justin Bieber: Believe

“Believe finds Bieber co-writing all but one song and handling his “not a boy, not quite a man” status with poise, despite some considerable contrast between his age and what he has been through. Given the space allowed by an hour-long release, Bieber aims for just about every pop market.”–All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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“Warm, contemplative, country-folk pop that seamlessly blends the rootsy, sunset melancholy of Gram Parsons, the smoky, Adirondack sheen of Joe Pernice’s Scud Mountain Boys and the earthy grace of the Cowboy Junkies.”–All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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The Gossip: A Joyful Noise

“A Joyful Noise isn’t as raw or immediate as any of the Gossip’s earlier albums, which makes it a bit of a grower for anyone attached to the band’s previous firepower, but even if their liberating rock is really missed, there’s nothin’ wrong with their pop inclinations.”–All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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Karmin: Hello

“Hello is where Karmin attempt to shake off the specter of novelty and present themselves as an honest to goodness modern pop band.”–All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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Willie Nelson: Heroes

“An appealingly misshapen collection of classics, contemporaries, and originals. Heroes kind of winds up summarizing all that’s good and bad about Willie as he approaches his 80th birthday: he’s open to everything but has no innate editor, so he whiffs as often as he connects, but when he does connect, it’s a wonder to behold…and [...]

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B.o.B.: Strange Clouds

“This is bold pop-rap at an “Arena” level, and while partying like a rock star means cohesiveness takes a hit, Strange Clouds is still thrilling and persuasive.”–All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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John Mayer: Born and Raised

“[Mayer] certainly is emphasizing his affection for American roots, particularly of the folk and country kind. He doesn’t murmur romantic words; he plaintively says he’s sorry over austere acoustic backdrops, taking pains to ensure that Born and Raised feels weathered, rustic, and lived-in.”–All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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Chano Dominguez: Flamenco Sketches

“Flamenco Sketches began as a commission from the Barcelona Jazz Festival to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Miles Davis’ Kind of Blue. The album is a re-visioned reading of the compositions on the iconic Davis album — in different order — as well as two other Davis compositions, “Nardis” (which he never recorded) and “Serpent’s [...]

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The Cult: Choice of Weapon

“Choice of Weapon is the Cult’s finest moment in 23 years; it’s the true swaggering heir to the period that birthed Electric and Sonic Temple, and proof that — contrary to even Ian Astbury’s stated belief in 2009 — the album is far from dead.”–All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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Karsh Kale: Cinema

“Its title is apt; throughout the album his approach is explicitly cinematic (especially so on the Bollywood-flavored “Turnpike”) even as he weaves together multiple threads from the ever-expanding tapestry of both modern Indian and Western pop music.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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Fun.: Some Nights

“Fun.’s debut album Aim and Ignite was an interesting blend of seemingly divergent styles topped by a healthy dose of grandiose ambition and performed with a precise abandon. The trio made an album that was truly progressive and also super catchy and fun. The follow-up, Some Nights, ramps up the ambition and sonic bombast, but [...]

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