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Ashlee Simpson

Bittersweet World | Geffen
“Damn, humans in the year 2008 were way obsessed with cartoonish depictions of ‘the ’80s, what with all these shameless Oingo Boingo and Soft Cell ripoffs.”
By: DANIEL BROCKMAN  |  April 15, 2008


Barry Adamson

Back to the Cat | Central Control
It’s easy to imagine this eighth solo outing from Barry Adamson as a problematic prospect for listeners new to his evocative style.
By: MICHAEL BRODEUR  |  April 15, 2008



Ishumar | Real World
Toumast are soul rebels whose gritty/sweet trancy guitar jams reflect a life of struggle and turmoil.
By: JEFF TAMARKIN  |  April 15, 2008


M83: Saturdays = Youth

Saturdays = Youth is M83’s version of a high-school yearbook — aural snapshots documenting gilded angsty awkwardness in all its glory.
By: SHARON STEEL  |  April 15, 2008


Black Mountain

In the Future | Jagjaguwar
The band’s sound comes together best on the opening track, “Stormy High,” which, rather than inspiring you to space out, pulls you out of your seat with its relentless monster garage riffage.
By: RYAN STEWART  |  April 08, 2008



Meanderthal | Hydra Head
Since metal is a world created by male dorks, it has to be the most excessively sub-categorized genre of music ever.
By: DANIEL BROCKMAN  |  April 08, 2008


Kevin Ayers

Unfairground | Gigantic
His philosophizing is rarely twee, and his fine-oaked voice gives new authority to his pastis-and-mushroom-fueled musings.
By: GUSTAVO TURNER  |  April 07, 2008


Yael Naim

I can’t understand half of what Yael Naim is singing on her homonymous sophomore release, and her inscrutability only adds to her charm.
By: SHARON STEEL  |  April 08, 2008



Supreme Balloon | Matador
If past outings have given all the attention to your brain, this one is a special dedication to your ears.
By: MICHAEL BRODEUR  |  April 08, 2008


The Boston Horns

Shibuya Gumbo |
These primal-funk black belts led by former Heavy Metal Horns leaders Henley Douglas Jr. and Garret Savluk spare no grease on their sixth studio album.
By: TED DROZDOWSKI  |  April 09, 2008


Debashish Bhattacharya

Calcutta Chronicles: Indian Slide Guitar Odyssey
The maverick stylist plays a variety of slide-guitar variants here, in musical styles reflecting his experiences in the culturally rich Calcutta milieu.
By: BANNING EYRE  |  April 01, 2008


Dave Douglas and Keystone

Moonshine |
Moonshine  borrows its title (and, ostensibly, its mood) from a Fatty Arbuckle film, one co-starring Buster Keaton.
By: JEFF TAMARKIN  |  April 01, 2008


Chatham County Line

IV | Yep Rock
Over four albums, this quartet from Raleigh, North Carolina, have retraced the evolution of bluegrass.
By: TED DROZDOWSKI  |  April 02, 2008


Fat Joe

The Elephant in the Room | Terror Squad
For a 15-year rap veteran who brought the world the late Big Pun and has penned a long string of hits, Fat Joe sure has an inferiority complex.
By: BEN WESTHOFF  |  April 02, 2008


Tristan Prettyman

Hello | Virgin
This sophomore set by San Diego–based Tristan Prettyman doesn’t warrant its statement-making title.
By: MIKAEL WOOD  |  April 02, 2008


Joe Jackson

Rain | Rykodisc
Joe Jackson always sounds best when at least some of his original quartet are on board.
By: BRETT MILANO  |  April 01, 2008


In the Name of Love: Africa Celebrates U2

Shout! Factory
His good intentions and best efforts notwithstanding, economists are divided as to how effective Bono’s campaigning on behalf of Africa’s poor, diseased, and disenfranchised has been.
By: JEFF TAMARKIN  |  March 25, 2008


Alan Jackson

Good Time | Arista
“But I still like bologna on white bread now and then” is the rallying cry on Good Time .
By: WRNER TRIESCHMANN  |  March 25, 2008


Fripp + Eno

Beyond Even (1992-2006) | Opal
This collection of odds and sods isn’t exactly your father’s ambient music, though guitarist Robert Fripp and keyboardist/sonic sculptor Brian Eno are certainly the genre’s papas.
By: TED DROZDOWSKI  |  March 25, 2008


Hot Water Music

Til the Wheels Fall Off | No Idea
If nothing else, it’s a reminder that two guitars playing the same power chords isn’t always a bad thing.
By: DAVID BOFFA  |  March 25, 2008


Rick Ross

Trilla | Def Jam
It’s easy to hate on Rick Ross for his sub-standard flow and tired materialism.
By: BEN WESTHOFF  |  March 25, 2008

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