Album Of The Week

Album Of The Week: Jessie Ware Tough Love

By Tom Breihan / October 21, 2014
Jessie Ware is through being cool. "Say You Love Me," the best song on her sophomore album Tough Love, has a gospel choir and an Ed Sheeran co-writing credit and a bridge that sounds like the song from Once that won the Oscar. It is a song that fully exists in Sam Smith territory. More »


Album Of The Week: DJ Quik The Midnight Life

By Tom Breihan / October 14, 2014
"That Getter," the first single from DJ Quik's new album The Midnight Life, had one guest, and that guest's name was David Blake. David Blake is Quik's birth name, so I assumed this was Quik himself, rapping with a slightly different flow and doing a "T.I. Vs. T.I.P." thing, expanding his persona some slight… More »


Album Of The Week: Tinashe Aquarius

By Tom Breihan / October 7, 2014
There are so many good new albums coming out this week -- from Ex Hex, from Steve Gunn, from Zola Jesus, from Vashti Bunyan -- but this week still turned into a two-horse race between Tinashe's Aquarius and Caribou's Our Love, two exceptional pieces of work. The hardest thing about that decision: those two album… More »


Album Of The Week: Lydia Ainsworth Right From Real

By Tom Breihan / September 30, 2014
The music isn't the first thing you'll notice about Lydia Ainsworth's video for "Malachite," one of the year's best clips. Visually, the clip is a hypnotic nightmare, a cryptic tableau of street-dancers dressed like ghouls and moving like dream-logic wraiths. It's shot in some nondescript warehouse space and made to look like a single… More »


Album Of The Week: Perfume Genius Too Bright

By Tom Breihan / September 23, 2014
This is one of those difficult weeks, one of those weeks when choosing one favorite album becomes a near-impossible task. It's the week when Aphex Twin came back after a decade-plus absence with SYRO, a warm and welcoming but also complex and overwhelming piece of work. And even though I already wrote about SYRO,… More »


Album Of The Week: The Juan Maclean In A Dream

By Tom Breihan / September 16, 2014
On Twitter last week, the writer Rich Juzwiak posted this: "There is shit on the Juan MacLean album that sounds like soulful house if they removed the soul and left the corpse singing." Rich meant that as a dismissal of the album, but it also gets at what I like about it. The new… More »


Album Of The Week: Hiss Golden Messenger Lateness Of Dancers

By Tom Breihan / September 9, 2014
If you've ever lived in a big city and then left for the boonies, a couple of things will never get old. One is the relative novelty of being able to look up and see stars -- not just one or two of them, but a sea of them, entire constellations that you only recognize… More »


Album Of The Week: Yob Clearing The Path To Ascend

By Tom Breihan / September 2, 2014
The TV miniseries Cosmos, both in its O.G. Carl Sagan form and its rebooted Neil DeGrasse Tyson iteration, works, if you want it to, as a smart science lesson for kids. It's a lionization of the iconoclasts, throughout history, who helped us understand how the universe works, and an approachable science-fictony way to teach science… More »


Album Of The Week: Ty Segall Manipulator

By Tom Breihan / August 26, 2014
This Album Of The Week column has been running for nearly three years now, so it's something of a surprise that Ty Segall has only appeared in this space once before. (He won Album Of The Week honors for the Stoogesian slobberknocker Slaughterhouse, and I was on paternity leave that week, so I didn't… More »


Album Of The Week: Pallbearer Foundations Of Burden

By Tom Breihan / August 19, 2014
Pallbearer don't sound like Black Sabbath. Or they do, sort of, but only to the extent that early Low sounds like a Phil Spector girl group, or that second-album Bon Iver sounds like Bruce Hornsby. The influence is there, clearly audible, underpinning everything Pallbearer do. But it's all filtered through waves upon waves of oceanic… More »


Album Of The Week: FKA twigs LP1

By Tom Breihan / August 12, 2014
Tahliah Barnett was a dancer before she was a singer, and that matters. Dancers learn ways to inhabit music differently, to physically respond to it, to internalize it and make it a part of their body chemistry. And Barnett was a serious dancer, one who went to school for it and who used to make… More »


Album Of The Week: Kix Rock Your Face Off

By Tom Breihan / August 5, 2014
What was the best hair-metal band of the '80s? Guns N' Roses is the obvious answer, and Axl Rose did have some impressively big hair in the "Welcome To The Jungle" video, but that band (smartly) distanced themselves from their Sunset Strip peers as quickly as they possibly could, effectively and consciously transcending the genre… More »


Album Of The Week: Jenny Lewis The Voyager

By Tom Breihan / July 29, 2014
Track five on the new Jenny Lewis album starts like this: "When I turned 16, I was furious and reckless / Got a Chelsea girl haircut and a plane ticket to Paris." The song is about meeting another American girl over there and sort-of/kind-of falling in love: "How could I resist her? / I had… More »


Album Of The Week: Courtship Ritual Pith

By Tom Breihan / July 22, 2014
I might as well get some boring full-disclosure stuff out of the way first: Nick Sylvester, a great friend and former colleague of mine, produced this album, and he's putting it out on Godmode, his label. The fact that Nick worked on this album has a lot to do with the fact that I… More »


Album Of The Week: United Nations The Next Four Years

By Tom Breihan / July 15, 2014
"A new life, a new craze, a new sound, all the rage," Geoff Rickly sings on "Serious Business," the first song from United Nations' new album The Next Four Years -- except he's demonically howling it, not singing, and you'd never pick those words out without the help of a lyric sheet. Still, those… More »


Album Of The Week: DJ Dodger Stadium Friend Of Mine

By Tom Breihan / July 8, 2014
"Lately, I've been singing love songs by myself." "It looks like I'm the one who lost." "Never win, you know you'll never win." On the page, these are elegant phrases, sharply drawn pieces of economical wording that hint at vast oceans of ache without lapsing into woe-is-me verbosity. But that's pretty much all they are. More »


Album Of The Week: Beverly Careers

By Tom Breihan / July 1, 2014
I won't lie: This was a rough week. Some weeks are rough because there are so many great albums that, when I pick one, I'm doing a disservice to all the others. And then some weeks are rough because there's just nothing going on. This is one of those weeks. We haven't seen a release… More »


Album Of The Week: How To Dress Well “What Is This Heart?”

By Tom Breihan / June 24, 2014
Here's something we never really knew before: Tom Krell can sing. Krell has been releasing music as How To Dress Well for something like six years, but he's kept his voice obscured, shrouded in flickering fog, buried in audio murk. Even on 2012's great Total Loss, the moment where he fully and finally stepped away… More »


Album Of The Week: White Lung Deep Fantasy

By Tom Breihan / June 17, 2014
White Lung don't sound like Hole. They don't sound like L7, either. The only way they'd sound like Babes In Toyland is if you shot Babes In Toyland full of adrenaline and then forced them to claw their way out of a gigantic plastic bag. It doesn't make much sense, musically at least, to compare… More »


Album Of The Week: clipping. CLPPNG

By Tom Breihan / June 10, 2014
The minute the L.A. trio clipping. emerged, combining clinically precise raps with assaultive squalls of electro-noise, they invited comparison to another California group, Death Grips. But those comparisons don't work, and the main reason is also the main reason I can't stand Death Grips. Here's the thing: clipping. are, on some level, a rap group,… More »


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