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New Album Reviews:

Crater: Talk To Me So I Can Fall Asleep
Buy! - (Help Yourself)
This Seattle duo's debut album is a promising set of dark electro-pop with buzzing synths, rumbling guitars, industrial-tinged rhythms, ethereal vocals and hypnotic pop hooks. 2/19/2016 - Don Yates


Mavis Staples: Livin' On A High Note
Buy! - (Anti-)
The legendary soul/gospel singer's latest album was produced by M. Ward and features 12 original songs written for Mavis by an impressive assortment of artists including Benjamin Booker, Nick Cave, tune-yards, Justin Vernon, Valerie June, Aloe Blacc, The Head & the Heart's Charity Rose Thielen and other notables. The end result is a joyous blend of soul, funk, blues and gospel that beautifully reflects her own indomitable spirit. 2/19/2016 - Don Yates

Other Mavis Staples album reviews:

You Are Not Alone - 9/8/2010


Quilt: Plaza
Buy! - (Mexican Summer)
This Boston band's third album is a tighter, cleaner and more concise take on their folk-tinged psych-pop inflected with dream-pop, motorik prog and other styles on a variety of beautifully crafted songs. 2/19/2016 - Don Yates

Other Quilt album reviews:

Held In Splendor - 1/24/2014


TEEN: Love Yes
Buy! - (Carpark)
This Brooklyn band's third album is their sharpest set to date of arty electro-pop with shimmering synths, airy three-part harmonies and sharply crafted lyrics revolving around feminism and relationships. 2/19/2016 - Don Yates


Death By Unga Bunga: Pineapple Pizza
Buy! - (Jansen)
This Norwegian band's fourth album is a fiery, '60s-steeped blend of garage-rock, psych and power-pop with crunchy guitars, energetic rhythms and catchy song hooks. 2/19/2016 - Don Yates


School Of Seven Bells: SVIIB
Buy! - (Vagrant)
The fourth and final album from this Brooklyn project features songs recorded before the 2013 death of founding member Benjamin Curtis. Completed by surviving member Alejandra Deheza, the album is an emotionally powerful set of atmospheric electro-pop combining soaring synths and propulsive rhythms with Deheza's ethereal vocals and often poignant lyrics of love and loss. 2/19/2016 - Don Yates

Other School Of Seven Bells album reviews:

Disconnect From Desire - 7/2/2010


Flowers: Everybody's Dying To Meet You
Buy! - (Kanine/Fortuna POP)
This London trio's second album is an impressive set of fuzzy, '90s-steeped pop-rock with distorted guitars, metronomic rhythms, celestial vocals and sugary pop hooks. 2/12/2016 - Don Yates


Suede: Night Thoughts
Buy! - (Suede Ltd.)
The veteran British band's seventh album (and second since reuniting in 2010) is a strong set of dramatic, glam-inflected rock with a dark, majestic sound featuring glittering guitars, cinematic strings, impassioned vocals, soaring choruses and often-poignant lyrics revolving around aging, relationships and mortality. 2/12/2016 - Don Yates

Other Suede album reviews:

Bloodsports - 3/29/2013


Massive Attack: Ritual Spirit EP
Buy! - (Virgin)
The latest release from this veteran British crew is a strong 4-song set of haunting electronic grooves combining a dark, brooding sound with a stellar lineup of guest vocalists including Tricky, Young Fathers, Roots Manuva and Azekel. 2/12/2016 - Don Yates

Other Massive Attack album reviews:

100th Window - 2/15/2003
Mezzanine - 5/15/1998


Draemhouse: Only Friends EP
Buy! - (Blind Blind Tiger)
The second EP from this Seattle band led by Rose Windows founder/songwriter Chris Cheveyo (and also featuring former Rose Windows drummer Pat Schowe) is a promising 4-song set of atmospheric, psych-tinged dream-pop. 2/12/2016 - Don Yates


Holy Esque: At Hope's Ravine
Buy! - (Beyond The Frequency)
This Scottish band's debut full-length is an impressive set of anthemic post-punk combining loud, shoegazerish guitars, soaring keyboards and muscular rhythms with Pat Hynes' husky, howling vocals. 2/12/2016 - Don Yates


The I Don't Cares: Wild Stab
Buy! - (Dry Wood)
The debut album from this project pairing The Replacements' Paul Westerberg with Juliana Hatfield is a strong set ranging from buzzing garage-punk and anthemic Replacements rock to jangly power-pop and plaintive folk-pop, combining a loose, casual sound with buoyant harmonies and sparkling melodies. 2/12/2016 - Don Yates


Milk Teeth: Vile Child
Buy! - (Hopeless)
This British band's debut full-length is an excellent set of '90s-steeped grunge-pop with a raw, dynamic sound featuring fuzzy guitars, muscular rhythms, alternating male/female vocals and angst-fueled lyrics on a diverse set of smartly crafted songs ranging from catchy pop-rock to spartan ballads to feral punk. 2/12/2016 - Don Yates


Sunflower Bean: Human Ceremony
Buy! - (Fat Possum)
This Brooklyn trio's debut album is a diverse, impressively crafted blend of jangly psych-pop, crunchy garage-rock, motorik prog, dreamy post-punk, fiery stoner-rock and more, highlighted by sharp songwriting and an abundance of potent song hooks. 2/12/2016 - Don Yates


So Pitted: neo
Buy! - (Sub Pop)
This Seattle trio's debut full-length is a powerful set of scuzzy noise-punk with angular, abrasive guitars, pummeling rhythms and dread-filled lyrics. 2/12/2016 - Don Yates


Pinegrove: Cardinal
Buy! - (Run For Cover)
This Montclair, NJ band's debut full-length is a strong set of anthemic, folk-tinged indie-rock combining guitars and occasional rootsy instrumentation and shifting rhythms with Evan Stephens Hall's sardonic vocals and knotty, emotive lyrics. 2/12/2016 - Don Yates


Junior Boys: Big Black Coat
Buy! - (City Slang)
The fifth album (and first in five years) from this Hamilton, Ontario duo is a more forceful, rhythm-driven take on their spacious electro-pop, masterfully blending house, techno and disco grooves with R&B, funk, motorik prog and more on moody, aching songs combining bubbly synths and propulsive rhythms with hushed vocals and passion-fueled lyrics. 2/5/2016 - Don Yates

Other Junior Boys album reviews:

It's All True - 6/2/2011
Begone Dull Care - 3/30/2009
So This Is Goodbye - 9/5/2006
Last Exit - 9/23/2004


Wild Nothing: Life of Pause
Buy! - (Captured Tracks)
The third album from this Brooklyn-via-Virginia project spearheaded by Jack Tatum finds him continuing to evolve by giving a wider range and more studio sophistication to his shimmering dream-pop. Along with glistening guitars and synths, the album features sax, strings, marimbas and more on beautifully arranged songs ranging from propulsive '80s dream-pop and swooning, atmospheric songs to tropical-inflected minimalist pop and moody, soul-steeped ballads. 2/5/2016 - Don Yates

Other Wild Nothing album reviews:

Nocturne - 8/24/2012
Golden Haze - 12/7/2010


Deep Sea Diver: Secrets
Buy! - (High Beam)
The second album from this Seattle band led by Jessica Dobson is another sharply crafted set of adventurous pop-rock ranging from moody rockers spiked with Dobson's intricate guitar work to atmospheric, piano-based ballads. 2/5/2016 - Don Yates

Other Deep Sea Diver album reviews:

History Speaks - 2/3/2012


Versing: Nude Descending EP
Buy! - (Youth Riot)
This Seattle band's debut EP is a promising 7-song set of moody, '90s-influenced guitar-pop with fuzzy, intricately textured guitars and an abundance of memorable song hooks. 2/5/2016 - Don Yates