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Higher ground

The Refugees are strangers in a strange land
Cindy Bullens, who has done a lot of things in the music business, recently wondered: "What? You have to get old to have success?"
By: SAM PFEIFLE  |  January 14, 2009


The end of everything

The more the Cambiata change, the more they improve
The Cambiata are never satisfied.
By: SAM PFEIFLE  |  January 15, 2009


Winter to remember

2009 enters with a roar
Sometimes January in this town can be a bit slow. It's cold. There's a holiday hangover. Whatever.
By: SAM PFEIFLE  |  December 31, 2008


Scrutiny of the bounty

Was 2008 the best year ever for local music releases?
I'm an enthusiastic guy, and maybe prone to hyperbole from time to time, but it's hard to argue that 2008 wasn't an all-time banner year for music created here in the Portland area.
By: SAM PFEIFLE  |  December 23, 2008


Sun-ny day real estate

Loverless deliver an electrifying third album
People, show these guys some love. Or join them in worship.
By: SAM PFEIFLE  |  December 17, 2008


Wrap it up

Local music for the hard-to-please
I'm way ahead on my shopping this season (it's easier because the family has finally come to its senses and agreed to a strict one-gift-per-person rule).
By: SAM PFEIFLE  |  December 10, 2008


Which way is up?

This Way may not Make History , but they certainly rock out
You’ve seen them in the Old Port, whether it’s just J Biddy, or as Crossfire Inferno, playing plenty of rock covers, slipping in originals more and more often recently .
By: SAM PFEIFLE  |  December 03, 2008


Us and Them

Carolyn Currie speaks loudly on Waves of Silence
Written here in Maine (her fist album written here, actually), but recorded back in her old stomping grounds in the Northwest, Carolyn Currie's fourth full-length is a warm and smart disc, with fine arrangements of tunes that manage to explore a wide range of folk.
By: SAM PFEIFLE  |  December 03, 2008


The boy with no name

Travis Kline creates More Time
With a tidy five-song EP, More Time , Travis Kline is the newest entrant in Portland's burgeoning alt-country renaissance.
By: SAM PFEIFLE  |  November 26, 2008

Murky and bright

Tarpigh return: Where did they go?
It's notable that Tarpigh won't play their own CD-release show this Saturday. That would be the normal thing to do. And Tarpigh have never given Portland anything normal or predictable.
By: SAM PFEIFLE  |  November 26, 2008


We got everything

Frank Hopkins discovers the American Dream
Hopkins vented with Doomsday . Here he as produced something more measured, and, in the end, more long-lasting.
By: SAM PFEIFLE  |  November 19, 2008


Can classical be underground?

Portsmouth's Navona Records releases an indie aesthetic for orchestra
At least one of the reasons many of us contemporary-music fans don't get into classical music is because it seems like no one wants us to listen to it.
By: SAM PFEIFLE  |  November 14, 2008


One day at a time

Covered in Bees' 24 Hour Album
Covered in Bees have never taken themselves too seriously, have a ton of talent and experience, play a style of music that's not known for its complexity, and are therefore well suited to taking a whack at this 24-hour album concept.
By: SAM PFEIFLE  |  November 05, 2008


Another Nail in the coffin

A driving new album for Halloween and Election Day
Big Coffin Hunters are no big fans of McCain/Palin, the Bushies, or neo-cons, either, and their new album, Drive Another Nail , manages toss in a little political commentary amongst fun macabre metal tunes.
By: SAM PFEIFLE  |  October 29, 2008


Four on the floor

Albums you may have missed as fall fell
It’s been a fine fall already: sunny, crisp weekends for apple picking; big-time albums from Ray LaMontagne, Pete Kilpatrick, and Twisted Roots; a deep Red Sox run in the playoffs.  
By: SAM PFEIFLE  |  October 22, 2008


Pump up the Volume

A Twisted Roots retrospective (with five new songs)
Nowadays, it’s hard to remember that Twisted Roots ever broke up in the first place.  
By: SAM PFEIFLE  |  October 16, 2008



Ray LaMontagne on his new Gossip in the Grain
On LaMontagne’s new Gossip in the Grain (RCA), he’s having a lot more fun.  
By: SAM PFEIFLE  |  October 09, 2008


Hearts of gold

Pete Kilpatrick Band make like Obama and hope
Pete Kilpatrick’s burgeoning career is a microcosm of the near-chaos that is the current state of the music industry.  
By: SAM PFEIFLE  |  October 02, 2008


The ageless Miss Fairchild

She Won’t Be Your Kept Woman , but she’ll be your man
In case you’ve been itching for some new Miss Fairchild lovin’, you’re in luck with the four-song digital-only EP Won’t Be Your Kept Woman , available September 30.
By: SAM PFEIFLE  |  September 25, 2008


Bright lights, big band

The Bay State Turn This City On
The Bay State, born and nurtured at UMaine-Machias, are right in my personal wheelhouse: smart lyrics, huge choruses, and they edge outside your standard instrumentation.
By: SAM PFEIFLE  |  September 25, 2008


What good can the blues do?

Pam Baker and the SGs help you drown your sorrows
You can’t ask too much of the blues. Like the raw emotion they’ve become synonymous with, the blues are not cerebral. They are not progressive or revelatory.
By: SAM PFEIFLE  |  September 17, 2008

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