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Monthly Archive for January, 2014

“Based on author James Thurber’s fantastical 1939 short story of the same name, the 2013 big screen rendering of The Secret Life of Walter Mitty features Ben Stiller in the role of the mild-mannered protagonist with incredibly lucid daydreams, and the music that accompanies those reveries reflects the actor’s innate quirkiness.” –All Music Guide Check [...]

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Milosh: Jet Lag

“[I]t is Milosh’s smoothest and most focused solo work….Milosh’s rhythms are softer, more supple, and they suit his voice more than before….[A] sophisticated electronic pop album with a serious lingering effect.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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AFI: Burials

“AFI have definitely matured over the years. Their first jump was from a snotty, upstart California hardcore band with a heavy Misfits obsession to emo-goth superstars with their breakthrough 2003 epic Sing the Sorrow….With Burials, Havok and AFI… put to rest any notions that they aren’t kings of their dystopian rock kingdom.” –All Music Guide [...]

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“Arriving after a year’s worth of anticipation… Chvrches’ debut album, The Bones of What You Believe, surpassed the significant hype surrounding it….[A] large part of their appeal comes from Lauren Mayberry’s voice. There’s something about her bright, slightly raspy soprano that grabs ears and hearts, even though she spends most of the album telling off [...]

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Pusha T: My Name Is My Name

“With Pusha’s pen at full force and his performance a proper combination of cold and tense, the album is as if Clipse’s Hell Hath No Fury were atom-smashed into something more artful and unstable. My Name Is My Name is a remarkable and vital solo debut.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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“As a whole, this set is more diverse than either of its predecessors and at least as consistent….As evidenced by this first volume from season two, Nashville is a series that keeps on giving, both on and off the screen.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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“Ellen’s I’m Gonna Make You Dance Jams features a fairly broad assortment of upbeat, danceable music. It ranges as far back as 1971 for Aretha Franklin’s strutting ‘Rock Steady’ and is as current as 2012 with Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’ number one pop hit ‘Thrift Shop.’” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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“Recorded in Seattle, Washington and mixed in Bridgeport, Connecticut, the sophomore outing from rags to riches indie folk collective Head and the Heart sounds like the product of two coast lines. The band’s 2011 debut introduced an unpretentious, musically astute gang of pub-spawned troubadours… and the lush and languid Let’s Be Still doubles down on [...]

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Jake Bugg: Shangri LA

“Jake Bugg’s eponymous 2012 debut was enough of a success to push him into neo-stardom across the Atlantic Ocean….[H]is reputation was strong, strong enough to gain the attention of Rick Rubin, who signed up to record the young British singer/songwriter’s sophomore album at the producer’s home studio.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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Fifth Harmony: Better Together

“Better Together is the debut EP from the (predominantly) teenage pop group Fifth Harmony, the quintet that formed during the second season of Fox’s reality singing competition The X Factor….They keep it energetic throughout and switch styles with ease and confidence. This features the group’s first single, the Billboard Hot 100 hit ‘Miss Movin’ On,’ [...]

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Savages: Silence Yourself

“Plenty of bands have resuscitated post-punk throughout the 2000s and 2010s, but few have done so with the passion that reverberates through Savages’ debut album, Silence Yourself….Given that much of the initial buzz about the band revolved around its electrifying live performances, in some ways Silence Yourself doesn’t provide the full Savages experience, but it [...]

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Beachwood Sparks: Desert Skies

“Prior to the release of Beachwood Sparks’ 2000 self-titled Sub Pop debut album, the California neo-hippie country-rock outfit had already produced an album’s worth of material. Recorded in true DIY style in a small converted one-car garage known as the Space Shed, this would-be debut, titled here as Desert Skies, featured the band’s earlier six [...]

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DJ Khaled: Suffering From Success

“Those who would accuse DJ Khaled of using an overly audacious album title for this seventh studio effort are quickly schooled….Suffering from Success is… glorious… as Khaled continues to win, win, win no matter what, filling hooky highlights… with high power guest stars….Khaled does his usual cheerleading and gets some production credits himself, but the [...]

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“Florida Georgia Line… broke onto the contemporary country scene in the spring of 2012 with the infectious summer single ‘Cruise,’ a song that blended cruising country back roads and farm towns with ragged drums and layers of rock guitar….The duo seems poised for stardom going into the second decade of the 21st century, a time [...]

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OneRepublic: Native

“As a songwriter for other contemporary pop stars, Ryan Tedder has proven his talent for writing intensely catchy songs that stick in people’s heads whether they like it or not….[T]his might seem like more of a knock against OneRepublic as pop opportunists, if the music weren’t so dang catchy.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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“Now That’s What I Call Music, Vol. 48 arrives… with highlights arriving via Katy Perry (‘Roar’), Daft Punk (‘Get Lucky’), Robin Thicke featuring T.I. and Pharrell (‘Blurred Lines’), Justin Timberlake (‘Take Back the Night’), Taylor Swift featuring Ed Sheeran (‘Everything Has Changed’), and Lana Del Rey (‘Summertime Sadness [Cedric Gervais remix edit]‘). The compilation also [...]

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Motörhead: Aftershock

“In the history of music, there are few true mavericks on the level of the legendary Lemmy, a man who seems to do his own thing without any concern for what anyone else thinks about it. This level of confidence has made Motörhead a timeless institution in the world of rock & roll, and on Aftershock, the band’s 21st [...]

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“As a duets album comprised entirely of female partners, To All the Girls is… driven by superstar guest power but the intimate, relaxed feel is reminiscent of Let’s Face the Music and Dance. Such a quiet, comfortable setting is welcoming to a wide variety of partners, ranging from living legends Loretta Lynn, Dolly Parton, Mavis Staples, and Emmylou Harris to more [...]

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“Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom… actually makes its own musical journey through the decades alongside Mandela’s. Beginning sparsely with African folk instruments, the score expands into full orchestral territory as Mandela’s story deepens (and darkens), then adding electric guitars and synths as things get nearer to the present, all of which gives this presentation a kind of [...]

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“Black Joe Lewis’ 2013 studio album, Electric Slave, picks up on the barebones blues and old-school R&B of his 2011 release, Scandalous. As with his previous releases… Lewis favors a shoot-from-the-hip, lo-fi brand of vintage soul….Ultimately, while neither a true blues musician, nor a neo-soul crooner, Black Joe Lewis is pure energy on Electric Slave.” [...]

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