Music Reviews

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posted: February 26, 2014

English Oceans

ATO LP, CD

In his excellent new book I’ll Take You There: Mavis Staples, the Staple Singers, and the March Up Freedom’s Highway, veteran critic Greg Kot discusses the harmonic blend of styles that distinguished the late 1960s/early 1970s era Muscle Shoals sound from every other locale in America. Read More


posted: November 14, 2011

Kate Bush 50 words for Snow

Anti Records 2LP or CD
Kate Bush

As Kate Bush’s recording output has gotten more and more sparse—50 Words for Snow is only her second album of new material since 1993—so, too, have her arrangements gradually calmed. An artisan of the piano, Bush was always more chamber than concert hall. But 50 Words for Snow begs the listener closer, its hushed quality a cleverly crafted comfort to disguise the turmoil underneath. Read More


posted: January 5, 2012

Kathleen Edwards

Kathleen Edwards experienced a lifetime of changes during the past three years. She divorced husband and frequent collaborator Collin Cripps. She began a romantic and creative relationship with Justin Vernon, the Bon Iver namesake who helped produce and played on her new Voyageur. And, as detailed in witty fashion on the album-opening “Empty Threat,” she temporarily relocated to the United States from her native Canada. Read More


posted: May 25, 2011

KC and the Sunshine Band

Back in July 1975, when roaming Milwaukee’s Summerfest grounds or trying to sneak into Shank Hall for a beer, searching out heavy rock while wearing the quintessential “Disco Sucks” t-shirt, it would have been unconscionable for me to own KC and the Sunshine Band. Even thinking about it would have been the equivalent of suicide amongst peers. Read More


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