best-of list Archive

2017’s Top Ten You Might Not Have Heard/Heard Of

My brow furrows a bit when I read “Best of” lists published in November or early December; are December releases set aside for consideration in the following year? Or are they ignored? A look at albums released in the last month of 1967, for example, includes Jimi Hendrix’s Axis: Bold as Love, Traffic’s Mr. Fantasy,

A Look Back at 2017

2017 has been a busy year for me. Between May and September my focus was primarily on writing Reinventing Pink Floyd: From Syd Barrett to The Dark Side of the Moon. That book – published by Rowman & Littlefield – will be out in less than seven weeks. But I still managed to conduct nearly

Best of 2016: Interviews

In 2016 alone, I’ve interviewed more than 140 artists; that’s nearly half the number I interviewed in the decade prior to this year. I hope 2017 will be at least as busy; I find my conversations with creatives extremely rewarding. I’ve learned a few things along the way, and one of the most important realizations

Best of 2016: Books

2016 has been a busy year for me. Though I have been working part-time as a music journalist for more than a decade, early this year I made the transition to writing full time. What that has meant in practical terms is that I’ve transitioned – for the most part – from strictly writing about

Best Music of 2016: New Releases

I’ve said it before, and in 2016 it’s true as ever: those people who complain that there’s no good music any more simply aren’t looking hard enough, or in the right places. I had no trouble coming up with a Top Ten Eleven list of new albums for 2016. I easily could have added many

Best Music of 2016: Reissue/archival Releases

I love new music, but I’m also attuned to keeping up with the latest in reissues and archival releases. Sometimes those feature some of my favorite artists; other times they turn me on to music of the past that I’ve never even heard. In 2016 I’ve been able to select my Top Ten reissue and/or

Album Mini-review: The Junior League — “Also Rans”

File Next to: Sloan, The dB’s, Minus 5 Indie label Kool Kat Musik has carved out a solid (if exceedingly tiny) niche as a purveyor of power pop, that oft-maligned subgenre of music which features sharp hooks, strong melodies, and – say its detractors – a slavish lack of originality. But even listeners who aren’t

2016 Grammy Preview, Sorta

As is typical, you won’t find a great deal of coverage of current-day Grammy nominees in the virtual pages of Musoscribe. But you will find a few things. The Mavericks are nominated in the Best Americana Album category for Mono. They also got a nomination for “Best American Roots Song” for Mono‘s “All Night Long.”

Best Asheville Concerts of 2015

I’m always amazed and grateful that despite being a comparatively small market, Asheville draws high-end touring talent. 2015 was no exception. Among a long list of local shows, these are my Top 5 for this year: Jessica Hernandez & The Deltas – The Grey Eagle, March 12 Hernandez got her big break when she wowed

Best of 2015: Video (DVD and/or Blu-ray)

It takes a good bit more time and effort to screen a DVD or Blu-ray than it does to check out an album. With the latter, I can let the CD or record spin while I’m doing something else (I can multitask to some degree), but the former requires sitting in a comfortable chair, watching