Nick Rubin

There's big buzz about When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? from 17-year-old Billie Eilish. Publicity photo.

Album reviews: Marvin Gaye, Ex Hex, and Billie Eilish

Marvin Gaye You’re the Man (Universal) The follow-up that never was is finally here—and honestly probably sounds better now than it would have in 1972. You’re the Man could hardly have matched the gorgeously sighing melodies, elegant textures, and memorable aphorisms of What’s Going On, and when it tries, it suffers in comparison. Leadoff track […]

Stella Donnelly delivers a series of sucker punches on Beware of the Dogs. Publicity image.

Album reviews: Mary Lattimore & Mac McCaughan, Solange, Stella Donnelly, Flamin’ Groovies, and Various Artists

Mary Lattimore & Mac McCaughan New Rain Duets (Three Lobed) Essentially a 40-minute jam divided into four segments, New Rain Duets brings more exquisite atmosphere from Mary Lattimore, and, in a somewhat surprising role, Mac McCaughan. Best known for cofounding Merge Records and fronting Superchunk, McCaughan supplies not guitar but guitar-like synthesizer textures and samples, […]

Restroy is at The Bridge PAI on Monday. Publicity image.

ARTS Pick: Restroy

Monsters of jazz: Led by former Charlottesville resident and current Chicagoan Christopher Dammann on upright bass, Restroy is a jazz sextet that combines electronic and acoustic resources to create a “traditional experimental” sound that’s endlessly rewarding. Also from the fertile Chicago jazz scene, James Davis supplies most of the melodic material on trumpet, and erstwhile […]

Park Hye Jin's IF U WANT IT will get you through the winter. Publicity image.

Album reviews: Tallies, Ultramarine, You Tell Me, Gnash, Kero Kero Bonito, Bunny Lee/Prince Jammy/The Aggrovators, and Park Hye Jin

Tallies S/T (Kanine) Tallies kicks off with a frosty amalgam of ‘80s and ‘90s atmospheric alt rock—the Bunnymen and The Cran- berries come to mind—and when “Mother” follows up somewhere halfway between The Smiths and The Go-Go’s, it becomes clear that the past is where Tallies live. Sarah Cogan’s vocals get a little yelpy, and […]

Album Reviews: 2018 box set recap

Album Reviews: 2018 box set recap

Before 2018 completely disappears in our rear-view mirrors, here’s a recap of some box sets released last year that weren’t The Beatles’ White Album or Bob Dylan’s Blood on the Tracks box. Tom Petty An American Treasure (Reprise) In 1995 Tom Petty released the 6-CD Playback box, and, especially because his career lasted two more […]

TUNES: Top Ten 2018

TUNES: Top Ten 2018

As always, there are too many albums I didn’t hear in 2018, but here are 10 favorites in roughly chronological order. Khruangbin Con Todo El Mundo (Dead Oceans) This was the runaway crowd pleaser of the winter, spring, and summer. Though they’re from Texas, Khruangbin’s hybridized funk invokes the musical reaction to ’60s soul that […]

Robbie Fulks and Linda Gail Lewis (Jerry Lee's sister get Wild Wild Wild together. publicity image

Album reviews: Vince Guaraldi, The Beths, The Love Language, Tony Molina, and Robbie Fulks & Linda Gail Lewis

Vince Guaraldi The Complete Warner Bros. -Seven Arts Recordings (Omnivore) In “Linus and Lucy,” Vince Guaraldi created one of the most universally beloved recordings of all time, but it’s hard to find his stuff besides A Charlie Brown Christmas soundtrack. Omnivore helps with this nifty two- disc reissue, comprising three albums from 1968-69 plus four […]

Tierra Whack's tunes are kaleidoscopic, cool and insightful. Publicity image.

Album reviews: Golden Dawn Arkestra, Juliana Daugherty, Nicola Conte & Spiritual Galaxy, Wooden Shjips, Mary Lattimore, Tierra Whack

Golden Dawn Arkestra Children of the Sun (Nine Mile) While borrowing Sun Ra’s band name and giving songs titles like “Ra Horahkty” and “Wings of Ra,” Golden Dawn Arkestra comes from a planet that’s as much spy rock as cosmic jazz. Despite some vintage keyboards and occasional attempts at menace, GDA never fully weirds the […]

Detroit's Bonny Doon plays three area shows this summer. publicity image

Album reviews: Bonny Doon, Melody’s Echo Chamber, Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever, Kingdom of Mustang and La Luz

Melody’s Echo Chamber Bon Voyage (Fat Possum) Melody Prochet’s 2012 debut was produced by Tame Impala’s Kevin Parker and shared many stylistic markers with Impala’s Innerspeaker, which was just peachy. Bon Voyage was co-produced by Dungen’s Reine Fiske, but while Fiske’s guitar and Dungen main man Gustav Esjtes’ flute are present here, they’re not exactly […]