In 2014 we appraise hip-hop on its forthrightness. Take, for example, the two front-runner Grammy-nominated hip-hop albums of 2013: Kendrick Lamar's Good Kid M.A.A.D. City and Macklemore's The Heist.…   Read Story »
Amongst the major musical titans emerging during the second half of the 20th century, the Belfast-born Irish soul troubadour Van Morrison is perhaps the most underappreciated -- a figure every bit…   Read Story »
Few solo careers justify wholesale rebranding. Though it has become common for aging indie rockers to want a "clean slate" following the dissolution of their respective beloved bands, listeners can…   Read Story »
Rivaled only by Black Sabbath and Judas Priest in regards to influence and impact on the early development of heavy metal, Iron Maiden took the burgeoning musical style to a new and very unique…   Read Story »
Elliott Smith at the 70th Academy Awards ceremony: When it's mentioned, it's as one of those cautionary anecdotes, an example of the fundamental incompatibility of the underground with commercial…   Read Story »
I saw El-P perform live for the first time in 2013. The stage, situated under the I-65 overpass at Louisville, Kentucky's Forecastle festival, sat a stone's throw from both the Ohio River and a…   Read Story »
The year 2000 saw the release of a three-disc Johnny Cash compilation with each disc bearing a one-word title indicating the thematic scopes of the chosen songs: Love, God, and Murder. One could do…   Read Story »
What an enviable position in which Steven Patrick Morrissey finds himself. It is, I dare say, quite privileged, but we'll get back to that. He is a spokesman for Morrissey alone: not for a bygone era…   Read Story »
Barring the collapse of the space-time continuum, this was bound to happen at some point, but it's still a shock: The first Beatles album, Please Please Me, turned 50 years old this year. We…   Read Story »
The name of the game for of Montreal has always been evolution. Their current incarnation, making its debut on their newest album Lousy With Sylvianbriar, favors whip-smart, sinewy rock songs,…   Read Story »