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Category: Best New Music

Torres, Self-Titled: Album Review

Album: Torres Artist: Torres Year Released: 2013 Of all the albums I’ve listened to in 2013, only one has clung to my consciousness and literally haunted my dreams.  The album, Torres, by Torres, the musical pseudonym of Mackenzie Scott, is emotionally and audibly raw to the point where it is sometimes painful to hear, and yet, the album reaches such subtle and delicate heights that the heartache it conveys feels somehow beautiful, true and strangely invigorating. Don’t let the opening track, “Mother Earth, Father God”, fool you.  Torres is not trying to be Tori Amos or Sharon Van Etten or Cat...

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The Henry Clay People, Twenty-Five for the Rest of Our Lives: Album Review

Album: Twenty Five for the Rest of Our Lives Artist: The Henry Clay People Year:2012   It’s been a good summer for punk rock.  Bands like Japandroids, Deer Tick, and to a lesser extent, Gentleman Jesse are proving that hard rock as a relevant sound is far from over.  In the incredible heat of this July, The Henry Clay People have released a punk rock album that is at once nostalgic and fresh.  Twenty-Five for the Rest of Our Lives is an exuberant, fast-paced proclamation that punk rock, while it may not change the world, can at least change the...

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Punch Brothers, Who’s Feeling Young Now?: Album Review

Punch Brothers calls themselves a bluegrass band, but I think the old-time bluegrass community might disagree. The instrumentation bears a strong resemblance to bluegrass, with the traditional combinations of guitar, fiddle (violin for you yankees out there), mandolin, banjo and bass, but the song structures are much more contemporary sounding, more in keeping with Nickel Creek than Bill Monroe.

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Dirty Projectors, Swing Lo Magellan: Album Review

Album: Swing Lo Magellan Artist: Dirty Projectors Year: 2012   Dirty Projectors are a band I have listened to for years, but never honestly paid that much attention to, until now.  With the recent release of Swing Lo Magellan, Dirty Projectors have leapt up a few rungs of amazingness, in my estimation. Swing Lo Magellan, like most of the albums from Dirty Projectors, is hard to pin down in simple terms.  There are elements of math rock, with irregular tempos, sudden stopping and starting and complicated, if not startling electric guitar riffs.  Vocally, the sound is stripped down, not exactly simple,...

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DIIV, Oshin: Album Review

Album: Oshin Artist: DIIV Year: 2012   The Brooklyn-based post rock / indie rock band, DIIV (formerly Dive) is getting a fair amount of attention for it’s debut LP, Oshin, and rightly so. Oshin is a delicate, uplifting little album, the kind of music you play on a lazy Sunday afternoon but then find yourself listening to over and over again, even as you go into your week. DIIV is primarily the work of one man, Cole Smith, who started his musical project alone in a bedroom, cut off from even the internet.  Changing his nom de plume from Dive to...

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