Tag Archives: iys

[Hip/Hop] Talib Kweli – Gutter Rainbows (Album Review)

If Rakim is your favorite rapper’s favorite rapper, and Jay-Z is New York’s native son, where does that leave Talib Kweli? He’s the socially conscious, forever-underground guy, continually burned by the rap “game”, or, the money game — where lyrical talent and flow take backseats to branding, image, and monetizing talent.

But Talib carries his burdens well. He does what he wants to do, fuck all, and in the end, we’re the ones who benefit, especially when it comes to Gutter Rainbows. The latest from the BK MC has a few stumbles, but mostly gems. Gutter Rainbows was released January 25th. Read the full review here.

Talib Kweli – Gutter Rainbows

’Talib Kweli – Gutter Rainbows’

Talib Kweli – Cold Rain

’Talib Kweli – Cold Rain’
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[New] DeVotchKa – 100 Lovers (Album Review)

DeVotchKa lead singer Nick Urata sang “I Cried Like a Silly Boy” on their 2006 cutely-titled Curse Your Little Heart EP. It’s a song that aptly demonstrates the gimmick of a band that combines the sounds of traditional eastern Europe, roma culture, and circus acts — it’s a traveling group of broken hearts and cabaret musicians.

With their latest release, 100 Lovers, from ANTI records, DeVotchKa’s eclectic influences and sounds from the periphery of mainstream music, almost a vintage sound you can call it, resurface, yet their polka-like energy and Ringling-performer heart is worse for the wear. Read the full review here. 100 Lovers was released today, March 1st.

DeVotchKa – 100 Other Lovers

’DeVotchKa – 100 Other Lovers’
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[Album Review] Rachel Goodrich

The Sunshine State is more famous for its oranges and elderly than its music scene. In the last year the only notable band to emerge from the land of tropics and Everglades was Surfer Blood… until now.

Rachel Goodrich is a Miami native playing music that’s very authentic, especially when you consider she hails from one of the plastic surgery capitals of the U.S. The young singer-songwriter narrates tales of heartbreak and love and all that good stuff in her self-titled LP. Read the full review here.

Rachel Goodrich – Na Na Na

’Rachel Goodrich – Na Na Na’

Bonus: Rachel Goodrich – Golden Phone (Micachu cover)

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[Album Review] Stateless – Matilda

Label Ninja Tune has time and again been the place to go discover great acts. It has put out some sick albums like Bonobo’s Black Sands… but has also given us some so-so flops like Duppy Writer from Roots Manuva vs. Wrongtom. Like any label, it can be a haphazard mix of mind-blowing amazingness and mind-numbing mediocrity.

Which is a good way of describing the label’s upcoming release, Matilda, from Stateless. It’s a dubstep/rock/R&B/pop album that aims for a crazy, eclectic mix of genres, and still, somehow, manages to make a few good tracks. Read full review at inyourspeakers.com

Stateless – Ariel

’Stateless – Ariel’
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[Album Review] Kurt Vile – Smoke Ring for My Halo

Since the release of his 2008 debut LP, Constant Hitmaker, Philadelphian Kurt Vile has in fact been, if not a hitmaker, at least a constant music maker. His latest release for Matador, after 2009’s fuzzy, lo-fi Childish Prodigy, is Smoke Ring for My Halo.

Vile has kicked aside his DIY aesthetic aside for a CD-quality, shiny and clear folk sound. All you low-tech fans who shudder with ecstasy at the sound of a dust pop as your player whips around an LP, need not immediately dismiss Smoke Ring: hi-fi has a way of bringing musicians’ talents to the forefront. While the lesser skilled folk-playing folks might sweat at the thought of even novices with untrained ears picking up that poorly-tuned guitar, Vile proves on Smoke Rings that his acclaim is well-earned. Alas, talent alone does not a good album make — like with any new gimmick, practices makes perfect, and Vile has a few stumbles. Read full review at inyourspeakers.com

Kurt Vile – Baby’s Arms


Kurt Vile – Jesus Forever

’Kurt Vile – Jesus Forever’
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[Review] Blackbird Blackbird – Summer Heart LP

During the continued rise of electronic music over the past several years, countless acts have attempted to take the basic facets of the genre and make it their own with little twists of psychedelia and the like. It’s a tricky endeavor, for sure, so we’re glad that bands like Blackbird Blackbird have joined in on the fun with songs that pick and choose the best styles to create something that is at once familiar and fresh. Though their debut doesn’t have any ceiling-shattering moments, it is unfailingly pleasant in its entirety because of its apparently innate carefree breeziness. The fact that most of the songs are two minutes or less in length only makes them sweeter in their apparent simplicity. Though it’s most often low-key, the music on here is memorable for its wistful, layered hooks and simple but affecting lyrics and instrumentation. Check it out! You can purchase the LP on their bandcamp page here. Read full review at inyourspeakers.com

Blackbird Blackbird – Sunspray

’06 Sunspray.mp3′

Blackbird Blackbird – Heartbeat

’09 Heartbeat.mp3′
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[Album] Arcade Fire: The Suburbs

You can call the overwhelming earnestness of The Suburbs, the latest Arcade Fire effort, something of a return to form, but I won’t. Clearly, there is retrospect and nostalgia that colors this album, but as Régine put it on “In the Backseat”, “I’ve been learning to drive. My whole life, I’ve been learning.” It’d be great if we could all just be passengers on the journey of our lives, watching life as it unfolds, but eventually we have to grow up and take the wheel. The Suburbs is a new page, but if you must, you can think of it as a maturation from Funeral. It can’t match the excitement of either of the first two records, but really, isn’t that what growing up is all about? Read full review at inyourspeakers.com

Arcade Fire – The Suburbs

’01 – The Suburbs.mp3′

Arcade Fire – Suburban War


Arcade Fire – Rococo

’Arcade Fire_04_Rococo.mp3′
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