Ever since Jetta's music was used in the year-end Google ad recapping 2013, people have been digging to find out more about her.
While I'd normally give something like this the side-eye, believing it to be contrived and insincere, in her case I'll give it a pass because a) she deserves a shot at success, and b) her new material is pretty damn good.
McMorrow has taken his traditional folk influences and infused them with a surprising amount of neo-soul for his sophomore effort, and the result is like a smoother and more sensual Bon Iver.
A blast of synth-pop exuberance, a shout of pure post-punk fury, and an astonishing hip-hop high-wire act.
Expansive and powerful, bluesy and swaggering, and cool and groovy.
A band that deserves to break through, a bubble-gum pop song that puts Katy Perry to shame, and the true queen of the new folk revival.
Eerie and playful, dark and unnerving, and joyously breezy.
The National's album Trouble Will Find Me, released back in May, had the kind of title that made you figure the band would be exploring the same depths of beautiful sadness and solitude we'd gotten used to. This time around, though, it felt like -- maybe, improbably -- life and possibly success had lit a fire in their bellies.
While Lies was easily the strongest track on the Chvrches' debut LP, dwarfing everything else, overall the album was still a near-masterpiece of synth-pop. Here are two reasons why.
The Knife released their first album in seven years back in April, and by almost all accounts it was worth the wait. As with the duo's past three releases, it was mesmerizing and challenging in the best possible way -- an aural Lynchian acid trip.
It was the title track that closed the album where Sky Ferreira, ironically shined. I say ironically because the song was in fact pitch black and oozing sexual menace which built slowly to a climactic thrum of near-industrial white noise. It actually felt like fucking on ecstasy.
This track in particular was a perfect snapshot of the album, barreling along like a tank and finally dissolving into frontman Ally Dickaty simply screaming with palpable ferocity, "You lied, you lied, you lied, you liar." It was chilling, but undeniably fucking awesome stuff.
If someone told you that there's a band from Brooklyn doing Southern-influenced country rock, you'd probably just chalk it up to another case of hipsters co-opting a foreign sound for the sake of detached irony. You'd be wrong.
Next week we'll begin counting down the 25 Best Singles of 2013, but leading up to that we're going to be featuring some of the music that came out this past year that almost made the final list. Today, it's the first single from the debut full-length record from British DJ/Producer Maya Jane Coles.
At the top of the list of the pastor's regular rock-and-roll targets was this band. Why? Well, there was the cover for this album, which he would thrust into the camera with the kind of shock, disgust and anger usually reserved for townsfolk about to burn the local pedophile at the stake.
City of Angels, the most recent single from Thirty Seconds, is standard fare from the band, but stripped down to mostly piano and vocals it's actually a much better song.
Which brings us to now and her new record, the one eight years in the making. It marks a pretty serious change in her sound, but there is one song on the record that has the familiar lush sweetness that was so captivating almost 15 years ago
Any new music from A Perfect Circle is cause for celebration, and the band's just-released greatest hits album brings with it one new song, a track that sounds like a mash-up of Zeppelin and Disintegration-era Cure.
In the aftermath of Oasis, each brother went off and did his own thing -- Noel forming Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds, and Liam starting Beady Eye. The former retained a lot of the sound we'd come to expect from Oasis, but the latter seemed determined to tread new ground -- and it was the better for that.
Zedd scored one of the best singles of last year with Spectrum. Now he's released a deluxe edition of the album that track came from and it includes this new song -- with Paramore's Haley Williams on vocals.
Luxuriant. Hypnotic. Dreamy. Ernest Greene, better known as Washed Out, creates music that's practically tactile -- that feels like sliding into a warm bath or maybe lying in the surf on a deserted beach.
Last month the band put out their EP with Chester Bennington, High Rise, and what I like most about it is that it's so reminiscent of the more melodic kind of stuff STP used to do during the Purple and Tiny Music era.
Lily Allen is back -- in fine form and just when we need her most.
Last night, PBS premiered the new documentary American Masters: Jimi Hendrix — Hear My Train A Comin'. Among so much other great stuff, it featured some never-before-seen video and audio of Hendrix, including live performances and behind-the-scenes home movies.
If you haven't yet heard the full sequel to Eminem's landmark album from 2000, it's an undeniably worthy successor -- proving that Em can still bring the same ferocity, misanthropy, and exhilarating wordplay acrobatics of that guy from 13 years ago.
Sound-wise it doesn't reinvent the wheel for the band, and that's okay because the off-kilter electronics, garage-style reverb, and dark undercurrents -- as well as Sarah Barthel's sensual vocals -- do well for these guys. Why mess with what works?
Halloween was great, but it's actually the couple of days that now follow it that mark one of my favorite times of the year. Christians know it as All Saints' Day or All Souls' Day, but in Mexico -- or in Los Angeles, where I live -- it's better known as el Dia de los Muertos, or the Day of the Dead.
Very few music videos are actually scary, per se, but there are a few that can definitely be called disturbing, more that qualify as profoundly creepy, and at least one that really does go beyond scary into the realm of flat-out terrifying.
The Robert Glasper Experiment's new record features guest appearances by Common, Fall Out Boy's Patrick Stump, Norah Jones, Lupe Fiasco, Snoop Dogg, and Emeli Sandé -- and it's cool, late-night, neo-soul loveliness from start to finish.
Yesterday marked the 36th anniversary of the debut of an album that lit rock-and-roll, such as it was, on fire. On October 28th of 1977, the Sex Pistols released Never Mind the Bollocks, Here's the Sex Pistols.
It's a sprawling, epically ambitious art rock album that spans the equivalent of two discs and incorporates Caribbean rhythms, a whole lot of reverb, and the dance chops of James Murphy of LCD Soundsystem.
This is a record made with the youthful passion of a band that's not sure they'll ever get the chance to make another album so they'd better throw everything they've got at this one.
Putting aside the notoriously reclusive and self-serious Prince's decision to, maybe for the first time in his career, make us laugh out loud, the new single from the man is everything you'd expect. It's funky, it's sexy, it's cool as hell -- it's Prince.
While he's often overlooked or even ridiculed whenever the conclave of musical intelligentsia issues its official declaration of what's "important" and what isn't in rock, in the 11 year period between 1971 and 1982, Billy Joel released more spectacular songs than most current bands or artists ever will.
British trip-hop trio Morcheeba are pretty much the sole survivors of that era in the mid-to-late-90s when a lot of acts were composed of a female singer, two male programmers/producers, and a lot of smooth and soulful trip-hop grooves.