Were You Looking For This?
Music Reviews (24) Hip-Hop (22) Kanye West (19) Racism (12) Meta-Criticism (10) Lady Gaga (6) My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy (6) Gay Rights (5) Nostalgia (5) Odd Future (5) Das Racist (4) Jay-Z (4) New York (4) Pop (4) Sexism (4) Twitter (4) 90s (3) Apple (3) Born This Way (3) Break-Ups (3) Clams Casino (3) Drake (3) Media (3) Music Industry (3) Occupy (3) Race (3) Tech (3) The Silver Jews (3) "Runaway" (2) About Me (2) Authenticity (2) Beyoncé (2) Childish Gambino (2) Class Warfare (2) Ddeadspin (2) Donald Glover (2) Is This It (2) Ke$ha (2) LCD Soundsystem (2) Lil B (2) M.I.A (2) Music Videos (2) Nicki Minaj (2) Rape Culture (2) Reunions (2) Taylor Swift (2) The Lonely Island (2) The Strokes (2) The White Stripes (2) Yelawolf (2) "1 + 1" (1) "Airplanes" (1) "All Of The Lights" (1) "Born This Way" (1) "Judas" (1) "Shot For Me" (1) "TiK ToK" (1) "Under Pressure" (1) 285 Kent Street (1) 4 (1) 808s And Heartbreak (1) A$AP Rocky (1) Activism (1) Adult Contemporary (1) Aesthetics (1) AI (1) Amazon (1) Anne Powers (1) Annoyances (1) Arcade Fire (1) B.o.B. (1) Baseball (1) Ben Roethlisberger (1) Best Coast (1) Big Boi (1) Björk (1) Book Reviews (1) Britney Spears (1) Celebrity (1) Charlie Sheen (1) Chess (1) Chris Brown (1) CMJ (1) Cole Stryker (1) Cole World (1) College Dropout (1) Computers (1) Congratulations (1) Crazy For You (1) Dancing (1) Dire Straits (1) Dogs (1) Drew Magary (1) Drinking (1) Dustin Wong (1) Earl Sweatshirt (1) EMA (1) Eminem (1) Epistemology (1) Feist (1) Flaming Lips (1) Freedom (1) George Moore (1) Golden Archipelago (1) GOOD Music (1) Google (1) Graduation (1) Gucci Mane (1) Gwyneth Paltrow (1) Henry Louis Gates Jr (1) Himanshu Suri (1) Homophobia (1) How To Dress Well (1) Ilan Stevens (1) Insane Clown Posse (1) Instagram (1) J. Coie (1) Jack White (1) James Blake (1) James Murphy (1) Jeopardy! (1) Joanna Newsom (1) Joe Morgan (1) Juicy J (1) Justin Bieber (1) Kendrick Lamar (1) Kid CuDi (1) Kreayshawn (1) Late Registration (1) LCD Soundsystem (1) Lists (1) LiveLoveA$AP (1) Lollapalooza (1) Ludwig Wittgenstein (1) Mark Knopfler (1) Math (1) Menswear (1) Mental Health (1) Merrill Garbus (1) MGMT (1) Mike Will (1) Miley Cyrus (1) MMusic Industry (1) Modest Mouse (1) MTV VMA (1) Music (1) Nasty Art (1) NBA (1) NBC (1) Nerds (1) Nitsuh Abebe (1) Odd Future (1) On Certainty (1) One Week One Band (1) Online Privacy (1) OutKast (1) Past Life Martyred Saints (1) Pavement (1) Phish (1) Photography (1) Pink Friday (1) Poverty (1) Producers (1) Protest Music (1) Queen (1) Queens (1) Radio (1) Radioactive (1) Red Hot Chili Peppers (1) Reeëvaluations (1) Reflektor (1) Religion (1) Rick Ross (1) Rihanna (1) Robyn (1) Rock (1) Runaway (1) Shearwater (1) Silent Drape Runners (1) Simon Reynolds (1) Sleigh Bells (1) Speak Now (1) Sports (1) St. Vincent (1) Strange Mercy (1) Strip Clubs (1) Take Care (1) The Arcade Fire (1) The Dismemberment Plan (1) The Knife (1) The Suburbs (1) Tomorrow In A Year (1) Tony Soprano (1) Treats (1) Tumblr (1) tUnE-yArDs (1) ViCKi LEEKX (1) Watch The Throne (1) Weezer (1) Weird 'Al' Yankovich (1) Whokill (1) Why? (1) Wilco (1) Will Leitch (1) Wittgenstein (1) Women (1) Xiu Xiu (1) Year-End (1)

Entries in Music Reviews (24)

Wednesday
Oct302013

Album Review: The Arcade Fire's "Reflektor"

At some point – perhaps after he realized they both raised money for a hurricane-ravaged land, or maybe it was the recognition of a fellow Capital-A Artist’s inner glow of – whatever it was, at some point Win Butler seems to fall under the impression that he was Kanye West.

The similarities abound.

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Sep252012

Strip Clubs, "Bands a Make Her Dance", and Music That Just Sounds Good (Mike Will Made It)

I’ve only been to three strip clubs. The first one was called Cheeks. It’s in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and my girlfriend-at-the-time brought me there on my twenty-second birthday. I don’t remember why. It was terrible. There was a small lake of vomit in front of the mens room door, and it didn’t seem like anybody’s job to clean it up. Drinks cost about $20. We saw someone get bounced for licking a dancer’s chest, almost motorboating her, really.

 

Click to read more ...

Friday
Sep212012

How Should A Person Be Dressed?

My girlfriend thinks I’m “really into bro culture” because I watch the NFL, think Tom Haverford is the best character on Parks and Recreation, listen to Dave Matthews Band, and wish to own a cloth top Jeep. Is she right? Sort of. Again, as far as, I guess, superficial cultural signifiers go, she is. Or, more to the point, whether someone is or isn’t a part of any culture depends on the intimate relationship between their own self-conception and their notion of that culture. It’s easy to slip into caricature or offensiveness if one, the other, or both are too far off from would reasonably called ‘accurate’. It’s a difficult sort of equation to balance.

 

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Apr122012

Album Review: Nicki Minaj's "Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded"

The best ten songs on Roman Reloaded run about as long as Illmatic, and they are as definitive a statement about music today as Nas’s was back in ’94. Minaj’s louche, hermaphroditic lyrics shit on dichotomous thinking about sex and gender with vigor unimaginable by the epicene girly-boys who’ve approached the issue from the other side since before David Bowie became Lady Stardust.

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Mar212012

Report: Odd Future Live in New York

The average age among the mass of people waiting under the Hammerstein's majestic awning for the Odd Future show looked to be hovering around eighteen years old, bumped up a few notches because of the parents interspersed throughout. The crowd was still extremely, ridiculously young. Even the non-teenagers seemed young. Standing in line for a 21+ wristband, the guy behind me asked his buddy to share his (forthcoming) drink with him, saying, "I don’t have any money for drinks. My mom only gave me $20 for the train."

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Feb212012

Album Review: Dustin Wong's "Dreams Say, View, Create, Shadow Leads"

The output of guitarist Dustin Wong has gradually shifted from chaotic to crystalline. His early work with Ecstatic Sunshine veered toward shaggy guitar rock, while Ponytail was like an unhinged version of Deerhoof with odd hooks and wordless vocals. Wong's solo work, though obviously springing from the same headspace, consolidates and unifies his aesthetic.

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Jan262012

Album Review: Himanshu Suri's "Nehru Jackets"

Heems clearly puts a heavy emphasis on community-building in many ways. Like the RZA twenty years ago, Heems is building a small rap empire in New York City. He elicits strong performances from Lakutis, Despot, Big Baby Ghandi, all artists on his own Greedhead record label. There are also appearances by similar-minded blog A-listers Danny Brown, Mr. Muthafuckin Exquire, Action Bronson, and of course Victor Vasquez. Das Racist/Greedhead releases tend to use similar guest artists, evening out their inconsistency with an underlying artistic unity. And throughout the mixtape, there are little melodic and verbal callbacks to older songs that give the crew something like a mythology by simply hewing closely to catchy leitmotifs.

 

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Dec172011

Album Review: Yelawolf's "Radioactive"

Despite Radioactive’s second-half languor, it’s still a positive addition to Yelawolf’s canon. Based on his previous releases, the man is blessed with the high-velocity constitution befitting workaholics. And unlike other mixtape auteurs like Lil B and Gucci Mane, Yelawolf has benefitted from historically good quality control. It’s too bad that his major label debut is less than an unequivocal success.

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Nov152011

Unraveling The Drake Paradox

Throughout the admittedly hilarious review, Drake and his album get called "Renée Zellweger", "a crime against heterosexuality", "bitchmade", "false Beyoncé female empowerment", "audio vagina injections", and "gay ass music". And the nut is, believe it or not, I think this is a pretty positive review.

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Nov082011

Give A$AP Rocky Another Chance

The point is, ASAP Rocky earned an enormous mindshare in the world of blogs without actually crossing over in any significant way. No "Forever". No "Wonton Soup". No "Yonkers". Not even a "Justin Bieber 'freestyle' over 'Otis' ". Therefore, that Rocky would hardly try to come up with a full set of new songs for his big break really irked me.

 

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Sep202011

Pretty Good Looking For A Girl

St. Vincent’s project, as it were, is to document one person’s world, and she does so to amazing success. Her self is projected upon the listener in four dimensions, concretely. It cuts through the bullshit idealization of the feminine that’s so long hounded musicians throughout the ostensibly more progressive world of indie music.

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Sep132011

Is "Relax" The Album Of The Decade?

When Das Racist draw on their upper-tier liberal arts education, it seems like they’re writing for educated (read: “historically white”) people, letting in white people. They’re not. If they have a primarily white audience (an assumption I don’t necessarily buy), it’s because of latent racist assumptions that education and cultural literacy are an inherently white thing.

Click to read more ...

Friday
Aug122011

An Excessive Attempt To Watch The Throne

Like, the album is about wealth. But it's also kind of not about wealth, you know? Seeing a pair of really rich dudes rapping about Margiela jackets and Murciélagos is not actually about wealth. It's about the crushing poverty that basically literally everybody else experiences.

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Jul052011

Words Will Never Hurt B

When B calls himself "based," he's connoting a few concrete concepts: positivity, personal expression, courage. But "based" also connotes some of the more ineluctable aspects of life. Like the word "cool." Or "god." Lil B's aimless, non-judgmental, anti-religion is also a sort-of religion.

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
May312011

She'll Never Be a Rasta

When she says, "My problem with taking from the cultures that I do is that those cultures are under-represented and under-served," and asks, "Do I think I'm giving back?" it's pretty clear that she still has a liberal arts student's compunctions about running roughshod over a complex post-colonial world.

Click to read more ...

Friday
May202011

Album Review: Beyoncé's "4"

4 has no interest in being a sermon or a manifesto. Trying to parse the meaning of it comes up mostly empty, and that’s probably a good thing.

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Feb092011

Album Review: James Blake's "James Blake"

As an exercise in the deployment of total control, James Blake is a stunning success. Like every terrible partner you’ve ever had, Blake wants the final word in every decision; he’s not afraid to repeat himself, and in fact uses repetition as a philosophical hammer to shape the listener into a pliant accomplice in his endeavor.

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Nov022010

Taylor Swift Doesn't Need A Blog. She Has A Record Deal.

Taylor Swift — more than the over-sharing Kanyes and PSA-authoring Gagas of the music world — seems to be performing a sort of LiveJournal style of music. Actually, Swift is probably too young to have a LiveJournal, but the name is a lot more evocative than the more contemporary Twitter. 

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Aug032010

Album Review: Arcade Fire's "The Suburbs"

There is an album in here, somewhere. But what got pressed onto vinyl/laser etched onto compact disk/encoded into mp3 is emphatically not an album. There are heavy makeout sessions, limbs striking walls and breathing like gasping, that are more of an album than The Suburbs. Clattering pans and chefs pratfalling on spilled olive oil may sound more like an album than The Suburbs. No, The Suburbs sounds like the lifeless reflections of a chastised middle schooler set to a funereal caricature of this band I heard about a few years ago.

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Jul272010

Album Review: Best Coast's "Crazy For You"

Is Bethany Cosentino high? (Hah, yes.) Every song on the album is at the same time a joy to listen to and aural torture. The sound of the album refers to gauzy 60s surf rock and slacker 90s alternative rock. In other words, the album’s bona fides check out. To people our age, Crazy For You is a very appealing record. Unfortunately, it suffers from being made for people our age.

Click to read more ...