Archives for June 2006

Fernando – Enter to Exit

FernandoEnter to ExitFernando’s Enter to Exit documents a brawl between the Eagles and late-era Beatles over whether to make a Wallflowers album or a Tears for Fears album. The Tears for Fears faction won, but only just barely, making this album a compilation of California-style laid-back rock and roll (despite the band’s Portland origins) and … [Read more...]

Polysics – Now is the Time!

PolysicsNow is the Time!At times it’s hard to say if we are currently undergoing some pop cultural throwback to the 80s. Sometimes it seems like all the silly fads of the era of Ray Bans and Duran Duran have again become the dernier cri, and at others it seems the only remnants of the 80s are those few individuals in their acid-washed jeans and … [Read more...]

Eleanors Fault – Between Here and Away

Eleanors FaultBetween Here and AwayThere’s something delightfully loose and raw to “Between Here and Away,” one of the tracks from Chicago’s Eleanors Fault (is it Eleanor’s fault, or is there an earthquake line somewhere named Eleanors Fault?). I’m a fan of precision and practice that show in some bands’ songs as anyone, but when it comes to bands … [Read more...]

Hinkley – Estate Sale

HinkleyEstate SaleOn their third release and second full-length, the Rochester musicians in Hinkley offer a brilliant album of perfectly produced, stylistically diverse pop music that is sure to find widespread appreciation if given the opportunity. If every city has its band of hard-working artists who cause locals to scratch their heads over why … [Read more...]

Enslaved – Ruun

EnslavedRuunIn 1993, two soon-to-be massively influential Norwegian black-metal bands released a split EP together. One side, taken up by stalwarts Emperor, displayed a raw, slightly symphonic sound owing a debt to cult forefathers Mayhem. The other side of the split, however, owed a debt to enigmatic legend Quorthon, mainman behind the legendary … [Read more...]

Mia Doi Todd – La Ninja: Amor and Other Dreams of Manzanita

Mia Doi ToddLa Ninja: Amor and Other Dreams of ManzanitaMia Doi Todd is an accomplished artist with five albums behind her. The first three featured her distinct voice and an acoustic guitar, the fourth took her established style and layered it up with some embellishments, then the fifth studio album, Manzanita, decided to deviate slightly and … [Read more...]

Snow Patrol – Eyes Open

Snow PatrolEyes OpenIf this is the first you're hearing of Snow Patrol, it certainly won't be the last. While previous releases have sold millions in the UK, this Scottish five-piece has yet to experience similar success in the states. But that's all about to change. Eyes Open, the band's fourth LP, is armed with big and airy guitars, slick … [Read more...]

Solvent – Elevators and Oscillators

SolventElevators and OscillatorsSolvent’s Elevators and Oscillators is an instantly appealing compilation of new tracks and remixed versions of previously released retro-styled electronic recordings. Jason Amm, who is Solvent, is a Toronto-based knob flicker who specializes in blending synth-pop and slow, tight techno with warm hooks and memorable … [Read more...]

The Lovely Feathers – Hind Hind Legs

The Lovely FeathersHind Hind LegsOh! Let’s go outside / Put the car in drive / To the cornfield side / There, / We’ll take off our pants / Kiss the corn and dance / Kiss the corn and romance Stein avant-gardism? Carroll foolery? No. The Lovely Feathers. These lyrics, taken from “The Last Appalachian Cornfield,” paint a fairly clear picture of … [Read more...]

Versus the Mirror – Home

Versus the MirrorHomeI'm dedicating a short review to Versus the Mirror because it's not rocket science. It's rather clear to pinpoint where these guys fall in the context of current bands. Home is lighter than The Bled's material, but heavier than They're Only Chasing Safety-era Underoath. This band could be influenced by both of these … [Read more...]