Reviews

Peter Matthew Bauer
Liberation! - MEXICAN SUMMER
FILTER Grade: 82%

By Sarabeth Oppliger on July 1, 2014

 

Peter Matthew Bauer

Much like the rugged, yet refined quality he brought to The Walkmen, Peter Matthew Bauer’s debut solo album has that sort of grit you want to plunge your hands into. Brushed drums and colorful spreads of reverb paint Liberation!, modestly complimenting trills of Petty-esque vocals. The lyricism, according to Bauer, aims to confront that paradox of finding light within seemingly endless darkness. While the album spawned from Bauer’s Hinduism and his childhood growing up in various ashrams, the spiritual influence on Liberation! is still rather light. A dash of otherworldly sounds give the otherwise good album that extra oomph on tracks like “Istanbul Field” and “Philadelphia Raga,” but the...

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News

LOOK: Exploring Echo Park w/ Gap Styld.by and Priscilla Ahn Discusses Her Style Evolution

By Staff; Photos by Emily Shur on July 1, 2014

 

LOOK: Exploring Echo Park w/ Gap Styld.by and Priscilla Ahn Discusses Her Style Evolution

We’re excited to bring you the latest installment in our Gap Styld.by series, where we hang out with some of our favorite artists during an ordinary (or, in some cases, extraordinary) day and feature their styles. This time, we’re hanging out again with the lovely Priscilla Ahn in Echo Park.

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Reviews

Sharon Van Etten
Are We There - JAGJAGUWAR
FILTER Grade: 86%

By Kyle Lemmon on July 1, 2014

 

Sharon Van Etten

 

The title of Sharon Van Etten’s fourth record is missing a critical punctuation mark on purpose. Are We There is the sound of an iterant career musician in the middle of an emotionally trying period. Thankfully, Van Etten’s introspective rock tunes are still sifted through the ’70s singer-songwriter roots of previous recordings. (Trivia note: Some of the instruments on this album were used by John Lennon and Patti Smith.) Are We There’s best track by a long shot is “Your Love Is Killing Me.” The raw-nerve lyrics are pretty clear-cut: “Break my leg so I can’t walk to you/Cut my tongue so I can’t talk to you/Burn my skin so I can’t feel you/Stab my eyes so I can’t see.” All the verbs...

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Exclusives

FILTER HOW-TO: How To Wash A Dog with Jenny Slate

By Bailey Pennick, Photos by Eleanor Stills on June 30, 2014

 

FILTER HOW-TO: How To Wash A Dog with Jenny Slate

 

Jenny Slate is all over the place, in the best possible way. The actress/comedian/author/voice-of-an-adorable-seashell-with-shoes-on barely has a day off in between her recurring roles on hit television shows including Bob’s Burgers, Girls and Parks and Recreation (cue Jean-Ralphio calling her “the worst”); her debut as a feature-film lead in this summer’s Obvious Child; and a costarring credit opposite TV husband hall-of-famer Paul Reiser on a brand-new FX pilot entitled Married. During those oh-so-brief moments of relaxation, Slate opts to spend her time with her real-life husband, naturally, but more importantly, with her true best friends: the couple’s two adorable dogs, Arthur and Reggie. 

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Media

LISTEN: Dream Machines Bring The Soul On “Kind Of Love”

By Staff on June 30, 2014

 

 

LA-based band Dream Machines combine Motown funk, Hall and Oates harmonies, and synthesizers into one package on their new track “Kind Of Love.”

 

The Highland Park duo of Harry May-Kline and Luke Burba have dubbed their musical style "New New Wave"; taking bits and pieces of inspiration from a wide span of decades. “Kind Of love” is a slow, soulful jam with a hint of New Wave synthpop to give it some edge. In most cases these don’t seem like the most complementary of musical influences but Dream Machines make it work. 


You can download “Kind of Love” for free from Dream Machines here!

Exclusives

GETTING TO KNOW: The Orwells

By Matt O'Keefe of The Orwells, Photo by Jory Lee Cordy on June 27, 2014

 

GETTING TO KNOW: The Orwells

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Reviews

Swans
To Be Kind - MUTE/YOUNG GOD
FILTER Grade: 84%

By Adam Pollock on June 26, 2014

 

Swans

 

Swans are not a mainstream band; their music has only been heard by a minute percentage of the population. This is a travesty, for Swans are mind-blowing, and should surely be experienced at least by the number of people who are subjected to Nicki Minaj on a daily basis. To the uninitiated, the (currently) six-piece experimental New York–based noise-rock band can perhaps be broadly described as “a moody-voiced guy ominously droning/yelling over the sound of extremely loud, ambitious performance art. With explosions.” But Swans are also oh so much more. On their new opus, the over-two-hour-long To Be Kind, Michael Gira and his very serious men, with occasional support from a number of...

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Reviews

Hundred Waters
The Moon Rang Like a Bell - OWSLA
FILTER Grade: 83%

By Christian Koons on June 26, 2014

 

Hundred Waters

 

It’s hard to listen to album opener “Show Me Love”—a haunting a cappella composition of morphed vocals and arching harmonies—without making a knee-jerk comparison to Imogen Heap’s “Hide and Seek,” but listen a bit more and you’ll forget about that overplayed and over-parodied song altogether. It functions like a lullaby that draws you, eyes glazed, into a dream of a record. The front half of The Moon Rang Like a Bell is a tapestry of complex percussion that resists locking into a solid rhythm (à la James Blake), ethereal synths reminiscent of Hail to the Thief’s sonic landscape, and singer Nicole Miglis’s delicate and fluttering yet forceful voice. The back end gets more accessible,...

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Reviews

Mastodon
Once More 'Round The Sun - REPRISE
FILTER Grade: 78%

By Kurt Orzeck on June 26, 2014

 

Mastodon

Props to Mastodon for deviating from the well-trod metal path of making every new album heavier than the last. Continuing down the road they embarked upon with 2011’s The Hunter, America’s most mainstream metal act has doubled down on melody, harmony and verse-chorus-verse, and crafted something of a sister album, albeit with less adventure. Every song on Mastodon’s sixth album cops at least a little from the band’s past material—sometimes a lot. And while Sun has a sinister tone à la Blood Mountain or Crack the Skye, it doesn’t take the risks that those masterpieces did. “High Road,” “The Motherload,” “Asleep in the Deep” and “Halloween” are keepers, but they don’t quite put Sun in the...

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Exclusives

Banks: Catching A Shadow

By Jessica Jardine; Photos by Piper Ferguson on June 24, 2014

 

Banks: Catching A Shadow

 

Even in this time of access and oversharing, it’s not often you can grab the phone and dial up your favorite new musician for a quick chat. But that’s exactly what fans of BANKS have been able to do since the 25-year-old singer/songwriter posted her own phone number to her Facebook page last year. “I like making connections outside of a computer screen,” she wrote. “Twitter, Facebook and Instagram have never really been my thing. If you ever want to talk, call me.”

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