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Monthly Archive for February, 2013

Beach House: Bloom

“On Bloom, Beach House just go about their mind-blowing business…. Bloom is a sonic boomerang: resist if you must, but you’ll inevitably end up right back where you started — sucked into their heavenly sonic utopia.” –Boston Phoenix Check Our Catalog

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Matt and Kim: Lightning

“Feel-good music can be annoying if you’re not, y’know, feeling good. Even with handclaps, tap-dancing synths, and cheerleader chants, though, the Brooklyn duo sound more punk than twee in Lightning. Songs with shotglass-half-full titles like ‘It’s Alright’ and ‘Not That Bad’ build to fist-pump choruses, but there’s just enough attitude to counter that rah-rah spirit.” [...]

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The Heavy: The Glorious Dead

“The Heavy’s third studio album, 2012′s The Glorious Dead is a bombastic acid rock, funk, and blues-soaked album that sounds like the illegitimate offspring of the Black Keys and Gnarls Barkley… The Heavy delve into various punk, dance, and blues-influenced sounds including the manic garage rock meets mariachi band anthem ‘Just My Luck’ and ‘What [...]

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Debo Band:

“Boston’s Debo Band takes inspiration from a golden era of popular music in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, in the late ’60s and early ’70s. During a brief period of cultural freedom in Ethiopia, funk and soul music fused spectacularly with local traditions… Given their energy and talent, these musicians have room to grow, and there’s no [...]

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The Mynabirds: Generals

“Opinionated and empowering (the title’s origin lies in an iconic 1963 photo titled ‘Generals of the Daughters of the American Revolution’ taken by the late American photographer Richard Avedon without ever coming off as preachy, Generals is a fired-up yet congenial high five of a record that keeps its retro-chic intact while allowing the band [...]

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Rupa & the April Fishes: Build

“Build, the newest album by working physician Rupa Marya and her band, shows off global influences in some of their most appealing songs yet.” –SF Weekly Check Our Catalog

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“Spoon’s Britt Daniel and Wolf Parade’s Dan Boeckner are both true coffee achievers: high-energy dudes who tend to write tightly wound songs. So it’s no shock that their side band is a genuine synthesis.” –Rolling Stone Check Our Catalog

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Dropkick Murphys: Blackout

“On their fourth studio album, Blackout, the Dropkick Murphys work with their soused punk rock style for their tightest material to date. Sure, the intensity that made The Gang’s All Here and Sing Loud, Sing Proud so great is intact, but there’s a bit more polish and the Dropkick Murphys’ Irish-colored rock jigs have never [...]

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On The Road

“[S]elections from the likes of Billie Holiday, Charlie Parker, Son House, Dinah Washington, Ella Fitzgerald, and vocalese master Slim Gaillard effortlessly set the tone, while composer Gustavo Santaolalla’s (Babel, Brokeback Mountain) appropriately sparse and percussive score perfectly encapsulates the book’s willful nonconformity.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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Brandi Carlile: Bear Creek

“Named in honor of the converted turn-of-the-century Washington barn where it was recorded, Brandi Carlile’s fourth studio outing, the rough and tumble, sweet and soulful Bear Creek, is as fiery as it is bucolic… Carlile has honed her distinctly retro brand of Northwest Americana down to science, and Bear Creek feels both easy and immediate…” [...]

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Aaron Neville: My True Story

“My True Story is a smooth, mostly laid-back, and soulful recording by Neville. He provides a healthy — sometimes overly — reverential respect for the original material. Coupled with his vocals, these restrained yet imaginative arrangements offer some surprising twists and turns.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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Keyshia Cole: The Way It Is

“An advantage Keyshia Cole has over a lot of her young contemporaries is experience. As a foster child growing up in Oakland, she went through a lot of downs, and from the sounds of The Way It Is, her first album, she’s had her share of complex relationships… Cole’s voice is sweet and ringing, like [...]

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Hunter Hayes: Hunter Hayes

“[H]e has crisp, bright, relentless melodies designed to win over any audience. Hunter Hayes may be pure Nashville product but he believes in what he’s selling, so it’s hard not to smile along as he hawks his wares.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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“The Wombats’ 2011 sophomore effort, This Modern Glitch finds the gleefully cynical Brit trio delivering a batch of catchy, immediately memorable dance-rock tracks the likes of which haven’t been heard since the glory days of Blur and ’90s Cool Britannia.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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Gary Clark, Jr: Blak and Blu

“On Blak and Blu, most of Clark’s tunes are solidly rooted in the blues, but he’s also folded in hearty servings of hard rock, funk, retro-soul, and even a dash of hip-hop, and the way he lets the flavors mix is a big part of what makes this album work so well.” –All Music Guide [...]

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Eminem: Encore

“Here, Eminem is plain-spoken and literal, intent on refuting every critic from Benzino at The Source to Triumph the Insult Comic Dog… While the album is a little long, it’s worth a listen to hear the moments that work really well, whether it’s full songs or flights of phrase.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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Now That’s What I Call Music 42

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“Dramatic and sweeping, the Las Vegas band works in the same vein as pop giants Coldplay, offering up track after track of hooky and emotional midtempo jams. While a move like this might seem overly ambitious for a freshman band, Imagine Dragons are able to pull the sound off…” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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Tame Impala: Lonerism

“If their debut was any indication, Tame Impala’s second full-length, Lonerism, will once again be compared to albums from the late 1960s and early 70s. But if their intent was to make a record that sounds like it came from that era, they’ve failed and ended up with something more fascinating.” –Pitchfork Check Our Catalog

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“Mike Oldfield, the self-taught guitarist, multi-instrumentalist, composer, arranger, and producer, is chiefly remembered for his album-length ‘Tubular Bells’ composition, an eerie, fascinating, and conceptual piece that did so much to set the tone for the movie The Exorcist… This self-chosen set makes a great introduction to his life’s work, although ardent fans will no doubt [...]

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