review Archive

Album Review: Bobbie Morrone — Lonely St.

In many ways, the current resurgence in pop-soul is not surprising. A significant segment of today’s listeners is always in search of something new. But at the same time they want music that evokes subtle, almost unconscious connection to the music of the past.  So music that sounds at least a little bit like Stevie

Hundred-word Reviews for January 2019

The backlog is threatening to get unmanageable once again. As a kind of editorial pressure release valve, here’s a quick look at ten worthy albums that have recently crossed my desk. All new music. Paul Kelly – Nature Some artists accumulate a body of work that all ties together in a neat fashion. Paul Kelly

Album Review: The Pearcy / Gratzmiller Jazz Quintet – Over the Edge

There exist many substyles under the genre umbrella that is jazz. The chosen approach of Boston-based outfit the Pearcy / Gratzmiller Jazz Quintet is hard bob, a style that experienced its heyday in the middle of the 1950s. Leading lights of the style were drummer Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers, John Coltrane (who admittedly explored other

Album Review: Imagination Movers – 10-4

At its worst, kid-oriented music is so sugary that it makes the listener’s teeth hurt. At its best, the genre entertains kids and (admittedly to a lesser extent) adults alike, and bring generations together over shared enjoyment of the musical experience. Imagination Movers lean in the latter direction; their songs are catchy and simple enough

Album Review: Larkin Poe — Venom & Faith

On KIN, their 2014 debut as Larkin Poe, sisters Megan and Rebecca Lovell debuted a modern roots style that owed a debt to blues but didn’t fit comfortably into the admittedly wide framework of the genre. Stinging slide guitars provided a sonic connection to the tradition of classic electric blues, but songs like “Jailbreak” had

Album Review: Eleanor Underhill — Navigate the Madness

Underhill Rose enjoys well-deserved popularity and success for its music. Since coming together on the campus of Warren Wilson College nearly a decade ago, Eleanor Underhill (vocals, banjo) and Molly Rose (guitar, vocals) have won critical and commercial success. The duo’s three studio releases and their 2016 live collection (partly recorded at the much-missed Altamont

Video Roundup 2018

Covering DVDs and Blu-Rays takes more time than reviewing albums; I have to set up in my living room, with a recliner, a couple of cats and (generally) a good Scotch In order to do so. So with a general yet heartfelt apology for the delayed nature thereof, here’s my take on five titles released

A Vinyl Roundup to Round Out 2018

So much good music has found its way into my ears in 2018. As the year winds toward its close, I’d like to share words on a few of these with you. All titles noted below are on vinyl (LP or 7′ 45 RPM single). Wes Hollywood – Dynamite It was more than six and

Album Review: Semisonic — Feeling Strangely Fine (20th Aniv. Edition)

Certain music becomes an exemplar of the time in which it was made and released. If the artist involved is lucky, that music not only evokes memories of that period, but also withstands the test of time. To qualify for the latter, the music must somehow avoid at least some of the trappings of its

Album Review: Todd Warner Moore — Spark

When an album of music opens with a spoken-word prologue, it positions itself as, well, a certain kind of album. And Todd Warner Moore’s Spark starts just that way, hipping new listeners to the fact that this is likely to be a somewhat literate, story-based collection of songs. And that’s about right. There’s a strong