Fleetwood Mac Retro Review: Rumours

Fleetwood Mac


45th anniversary Fleetwood Mac's Rumour album cover

We haven’t retro-reviewed anything for quite some time, so yesterday I went mining through some of the older albums I have been listening to decide what was worthy and interesting to write about. Then, I stumbled upon something new (Just Tell Me That You Want Me, the Fleetwood Mac tribute out in 2 weeks in honor of the band’s 45th anniversary), and I knew exactly what kind of old I wanted to review.
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The Antlers Review: Undersea

The Antlers


The Antlers, Undersea, album, cover, art

The Antlers have been a pet favorite of mine ever since the release of the exceptional Hospice in 2009.  The release of Burst Apart last year further affirmed my believe The Antlers are one of the most exciting bands to be following in the world of music right now.  Where The Antlers have thrived and found their success on Hospice and Burst Apart lies in the almost compulsive production.  Peter Silberman, the band’s main creative force, has made a mark on The Antler’s two proper albums by delving into the most minute details of the band’s sound.

That being said, the release of last year’s EP, Together, left a lot to be desired.  The execution of Together made me a little nervous about how their newest EP, Undersea, would turn out.  Together is a completely different animal compared to Undersea though.  Together was a collection of alternate versions of songs from Burst Apart, along with one unreleased track from those sessions and a completely unnecessary cover of “VCR” by The xx.  Together just didn’t bring a lot new or interesting to the table, other than maybe the addition of Nicole Atkins vocals on the Burst Apart track “Hounds”.  Undersea, on the other hand, is a cohesive collection of four new tracks in a nice little package.
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LxListening: Oceanic

photo of Odd Future's R&B crooner Frank Ocean

We have had a wealth of album and shows to cover this past month and a half, and unfortunately in the hustle and bustle of things, we weren’t able to review Channel Orange, the debut album from new R&B sensation Frank Ocean. Suffice it to say, I am in love with the album and Frank Ocean himself who comes off as a wonderfully mix of Stevie Wonder, Prince, and which is interesting since I was only luke-warm on his debut mixtape nostalgia, ULTRA and I really don’t care for Odd Future, the young, brash Los Angeles hip hop collaborative he is from. I think Odd Future are mostly novelty for their shock and awe antics and are more media sensation than lasting talent (even if there is no doubt some there). But Frank Ocean has more honesty and soul than the rest of Odd Future combined, free from the showy behavior and disturbing lyrics. So here are five Frank Ocean tracks to highlight this young promising talent.
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Top Ten Thursday: I Can Be Your Hero, Baby

In a concerted effort to make it seem we do not take ourselves too seriously, perhaps out of a fear of taking ourselves too seriously sometimes, we like to mix up our more scholarly lists with those that make us out to be a handful of nerdy jackasses.  This is one of those lists.  There has been a lot of hysteria surrounding superhero movies this summer.  I mean, damn, a Batman, Spiderman, and Avengers movies all in the same summer.  We are all extremely partial to Batman, especially those of the Nolan/Burton persuasion, and decided to save this dopey collection for around the time The Dark Knight Rises was released.  As comic-book/superhero movie fans,  we thought we could fantasize a little bit about which musicians would make the best superheroes, and speculate a little bit about their key attributes.  For awhile there, we considered doing a joint heroes/villains list, but ultimately decided to make two separate lists, with the heroes list today, and the villains list coming at you next Thursday.  Enjoy.
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Passion Pit Review: Gossamer

Passion Pit
album cover art for passion pit gossamer

I still remember the last few months of my college career like it was yesterday. Lots of friends, lots of “last times”, a lot of avoiding school work, too much of fun, a shit-ton of dancing, and a copious amount of drinking. Somewhere in the mix Passion Pits little EP found its way into my routine. Mostly correlated with the drinking/dancing. Chunk of Change was a pretty overly intense amount of fun to pack into 6 songs, but it really did the trick and made its mark. It also built expectations extremely high for Passion Pit’s first LP, which Manners did not live up too in many ways. Between the disappointment of Manners and the hideous excuse for a live performance I witnessed at Coachella 2 years ago, I was certainly expecting to be able to simply write this new album off the moment I hit play. Much to my dismay (I was really rather hoping to rip this album for some reason) I’ve seemed to have gotten a bit “carried away” by this album … very unexpectedly.
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The xx: “Angels” Song Review

The xx

the xx angels cover album art single
I haven’t had quite enough time to immerse myself in an album to review for this week, so I thought I might write a little bit about the lead single off of The xx’s upcoming album Coexist.  I would also like to discuss how this lead single is shaping my expectations for the upcoming album, which is slated to come out in early September.  Check out the video and my thoughts after the jump.

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Charles Bradley Show Review

Charles Bradley and Abigail Washburn

Jay Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park

Chicago, IL

July 16th, 2012

Charles Bradley Show Review in Chicago
Screaming Eagle of Soul

One usually goes into a free show being excited about the price of admission but rarely that excited about the act you are actually seeing. That’s because it always seems to me most free shows are that way for a reason – they either are a lesser known local band you are seeing for nothing or the artists seem random and rarely catch my eye. Last Monday’s free show as part of Millennium Park’s concert series broke both of those things bringing Charles Bradley and Abigail Washburn – two known great performers who I have never seen. While I have only heard Abigail Washburn’s cultured folk and bluegrass a time or two, I have been knee-deep in Charles Bradley 2011 classic soul debut No Time For Dreaming since the beginning of this year. The two made for easily the best free concert I have ever been to and Charles Bradley’s performance was the most soulful I have ever seen.
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