Gem of the Week: “I’ll Wait”-Van Halen

Song: “I’ll Wait” Artist: Van Halen Album: 1984 (1984) Though the musical legacy of the 1980s will always be stained by an overwhelming abundance of cotton-ball pop, there’s some precious hard-rock to be found in the decade—some of wild keyboarding and puffed-up synthesizers’ most formative years. A good chunk of the stuff was corny, better fit for…

Review: TV on the Radio-‘Seeds’

Another stint in their 12-year, voltaic art-rock career, Seeds is TV on the Radio’s pulsating, public re-entry by way of new, pleasant discombobulation. It’s also their first work in three years, following the loss of bassist Gerard Smith to cancer during the release of Nine Types of Light (2011). The EP runs the instrumental gamut, from handbell-tinkling,…

Gem of the Week: “What Goes On”-The Velvet Underground

Song: “What Goes On” Artist: The Velvet Underground Album: The Velvet Underground (1969) Very likely the forefathers of psychedelic rock, The Velvet Underground–NYC’s legendary hippie-rocker 4-piece–made it just about impossible for the ’60s to ignore fuzzy, distorted punk sounds. A definitive model of American youth revolt and acid-dabbling, circa-Vietnam War, the band’s repertoire gracefully shuffled gritty…

Post-Punk October: A Playlist

A genre ominously glorified in the equally Halloween-suitable classic, Donnie Darko, post-punk stays one of rock’s prime and most low-profile, goth-dipped sub-categories. Post-’90s and endangerment by rock and pop’s upstaging, its only real modern revitalization occurs through nostalgic 8tracks playlists, a handful of hardly passable ‘post-punk revival’ bands (Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Arctic Monkeys, etc.), and classically-versed…

Gem of the Week: “Operator (That’s Not The Way It Feels)”-Jim Croce

Song: “Operator (That’s Not The Way It Feels)” Artist: Jim Croce Album: You Don’t Mess Around With Jim (1972) Jilted vulnerability and self-rationalization occupy the late Jim’s Croce’s 1972 ballad, “Operator (That’s Not The Way It Feels)”. An acoustic-folk historian’s staple, the spill-all song recounts the impulse of checking up on an old lover—and the bittersweet memory-flood…

Gem of the Week: “Hypnotized”-Fleetwood Mac

Song: “Hypnotized” Artist: Fleetwood Mac Album: Mystery to Me (1973) During no other time did Fleetwood Mac sink deeper into gloomy, mystical rock than the three-year period of lead singer Bob Welch’s membership. Though Welch parted ways with the band just a year after their 1973 release of the phantasmagoric Mystery to Me, carrying on a successful solo…

Released: Childish Gambino’s ‘STN MTN’ in Entirety

Having slipped us a taste of his latest work via the serenely hallucinogenic “Sober” just over a week ago, Gambino now officially reveals the STN MTN mixtape in its entirety…[and freely]. The other “half”, entitled Kauai, will be an iTunes-exclusive release, with an ETA not yet announced. 11 tracks deep, STN MTN depicts an occasionally R&B-entangled Gambino (“U…

Elijah Blake’s ‘Drift’ Discreetly Makes it to iTunes

Without much notice, mellow-natured R&B-er Elijah Blake published his newest studio album today by enabling an open, SoundCloud stream-session. The entire album is also available for purchase in iTunes. A behind-the-scenes sort of artist, Blake hasn’t yet produced the public hype that his big voice–or his writing ability [see Usher’s “Climax]–deserves. Besides a summer 2013…

Thom Yorke’s Random EP Release: ‘Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes’

When Thom Yorke’s not vocally serving in Radiohead reunions, he’s indulging in solo-electronic experimentation…a kind that thrusts fans into a privately weirder dimension than ever unearthed in all of the alt rock group’s 22-years of singularity. Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes succeeds first-album The Eraser (2006), but only after an 8-year break of brainstorming; a lull ended by Yorke’s itching…

Logic Leaks ‘Under Pressure’ EP Title Track

Maryland hip-hop artist Logic’s under-the-radar status remains puzzling. With a recent signing to the Def Jam label and 4 mixtapes under his belt–all with Frank Sinatra-themed eloquence and a self-effacing calling card–you’d think the 24-year-old lyrical sniper would’ve made a bigger dent in the hip-hop sphere by now. He even made moves with Childish Gambino,…