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Album Review

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Album Review

Kamaiyah // A Good Night In The Ghetto

It’s a pleasantly quiet Sunday morning and you’re cruising down a west Oakland promenade littered with the remnants of last night’s youthful debauchery. Broken Hennessy bottles and stomped-out Swisher Sweet roaches laying damp in the gutters evoke the evening’s regrettable decisions and exacerbate your own mild hangover merely with the images they conjure. You stop… Read More

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Album Review

OF MONTREAL // INNOCENCE REACHES

Classic of Montreal + electronica + relationship failure. Innocence Reaches contains the band’s first completely EDM songs, a new musical foray that is especially significant remembering that Kevin Barnes used to only listen to music from the 1970s and earlier. Coupled with EDM, Innocence Reaches‘ other key element is glammy prog rock in a vein similar to that found… Read More

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Album Review

Schoolboy Q // Blank Face LP

After his momentous debut in 2014 with Oxymoron, Schoolboy Q is back with Blank Face LP, a pièce de résistance for the gangsta rap genre. In some ways analogous to his first studio album with Top Dawg Entertainment, Schoolboy Q utilizes the album’s harmoniously disturbing beats to deliver his off-kilter style flow to give the… Read More

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Album Review

PUP // The Dream is Over

Fact: “The Dream is Over” is a direct quote from lead singer Stefan Babcock’s doctor. After Stefan basically destroyed his vocal chords due to the band’s insane touring schedule of about 250 shows a year, he was rewarded with this crushing diagnosis. But if the story sounds a little ridiculous or overly serious to you, you’re… Read More

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Album Review

The Avalanches // Wildflower

My high school friends and I didn’t know what to expect when we watched the 1981 film Polyester, directed by John Waters. Waters is a master of gross, bizarre, dark comedy, typically taking aim at the depraved denizens of white, suburban, upper-class America. In this particular film, an unfortunate housewife named Francine Fishpaw (played by… Read More

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Album Review

YG // Still Brazy

When I listen to an album the first time through, sound and overall aesthetic are the initial factors that determine how much I like it. This is especially true in the realm of gangster rap, known for the ad-libs and violent onomatopoeia. I still remember getting goose bumps when the beat dropped on Chief Keef’s… Read More

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Album Review

Mitski // Puberty 2

Brandi: On a subway ride, the icy grasp of rejection, isolation and unrequited affection crawls over skin and pulls at tear ducts. There are too many people around for this to be a problem. At the core I become warm, my heart races past my panting and feels like it’s skipping. With only five people… Read More

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Album Review

Death Grips // Bottomless Pit

The summers of 2014 and 2015 could not have been more different for me. 2014 was the start of a new relationship, and 2015 was the difficult ending. Although the two summers were a year apart, and although they corresponded to two opposite emotional poles of my life, I associate both summers with many of… Read More

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Album Review

Frankie Cosmos // Next Thing

Tiny green buds and blades sprouting underneath thin veils of crisp white snow are a first sign of the transition to spring. Winter tends to linger, washing the skies with dreadful gray streaks and leaving traces of biting winds. All the while, there is a bright optimism that situates itself amongst it. In it’s transition… Read More

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Album Review

Andrew Bird // Are You Serious

A great effort by an established indie alt-folk artist, but unfortunately marred by one of his worst songs in years. Before the announcement of Are You Serious earlier this year, Andrew Bird fans were starting to worry he’d never release a proper follow-up to 2012’s excellent LP Break it Yourself. In the four years between… Read More

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Album Review

Julia Brown // An Abundance of Strawberries

I love lo-fi. There’s a certain warm, human charm to a song that sounds like it could have been recorded in a 17-year-old’s bedroom. Imperfections in the recording of a song can give it life and humanity, the way Monet’s imperfect brushstrokes infuse his energy into the reflections of a pond full of water lilies…. Read More

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