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Monthly Archive for July, 2013

“An eight-member ensemble, the Mowgli’s fill their songs with a panoply of instruments from guitars and keyboards to horns and melodica, and deliver each song’s chorus with a crowd of heterogeneous voices, shouting to the hilt as if the album was less a studio-crafted effort and more of a flashmob recorded on CD…. [A]n optimistic [...]

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LL Cool J: Authentic

“When LL Cool J dubs his 2013 effort Authentic, the veteran rapper is referring to an album that’s authentically LL Cool J circa 2013, and not one that’s authentically hip-hop. That’s important to remember as the everything-but-the-kitchen-sink effort overflows with guests from every genre, like Public Enemy’s Chuck D, blink-182′s Travis Barker, Rage Against the [...]

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“Much like his former/sometimes band the War on Drugs, there’s an undercurrent of working-class rock à la Tom Petty or Bruce Springsteen here… However… it becomes clear that Kurt Vile isn’t aiming to ape or even update the canon of classic guitar-based songwriters, but is very much his generation’s chapter of the evolution of rock. [...]

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“[T]here’s a swagger that underpins much of Pioneer, the second album from family country-pop trio the Band Perry…. Kimberly Perry’s fiercely committed vocals give Pioneer a character it otherwise works overtime to avoid and, for as good as the by-the-books ballads and rocking country are, the moments when the façade slips a bit make this [...]

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Black Sabbath: 13

“13 comes closest to recapturing the desperate feel, plodding grooves, and unparalleled metal magic of those first classic Sabbath records than anything the members of the band have done since, in any permutation or combination…. The influence of early Sabbath has become so omnipresent that it’s come back to influence its very creators four decades [...]

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Lady Antebellum: Golden

“Lady Antebellum rolls out their fourth studio album, ‘Golden.’ After striking a heavier tone on their last album, ‘Own The Night,’ the Capitol Nashville trio includes several more up tempo numbers on the new set…. However, any Lady A disc has to contain at least a couple of heartbreaking ballads, and they don’t disappoint here.” [...]

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Kanye West: Yeezus

“[T]his is the moment [West] becomes a swashbuckling Salvador Dali figure, chopping down all that’s conventional with highly imaginative work and crass, attention-grabbing attitude. Unlike Dali’s separate delivery of the two, Yeezus is an extravagant stunt with the high-art packed in, offering an eccentric, audacious, and gripping experience that’s vital and truly unlike anything else.” [...]

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“Harry Connick, Jr.’s 2013 studio album Every Man Should Know finds the New Orleans native delving into a handful of original songs that touch upon country, pop, and R&B, with only a few jazz-oriented cuts in the mix…. Ultimately, Every Man Should Know is a record with something for every Connick fan.” –All Music Guide [...]

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Disclosure: Settle

“Cunning if not particularly novel synthesists…Guy and Howard Lawrence draw from several styles and sub-styles of dance music — house, garage, dubstep, bass — and add pop appeal on Settle, their first album…. Considering all the shrewd alliances and its polished attack, Settle seems like it was designed to be 2013′s acceptable dance album. That [...]

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“It’s complex, harder, and catchier than anything QOTSA have done in a decade, and more song-oriented, too, but that’s a sign of maturity: [Josh] Homme has marshaled all of his strengths on …Like Clockwork and has found a way forward, a way to deepen his music without compromising his identity.” –All Music Guide Check Our [...]

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“After two albums of increasingly big indie rock, the Airborne Toxic Event take a little time to wander with their third album, Such Hot Blood. Working this time with producer Jacquire King, who has worked with artists like Dawes, Of Monsters and Men, and Tom Waits, the band make full use of his versatility, stepping [...]

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