Review: The Mars Volta Usher In “Bedlam” for 2008*

January 28, 2008

By Luke Pimentel

The Mars Volta rang in the New Year by – of all things – going acoustic.

During a self-organized bash at San Francisco’s Bill Graham Civic Auditorium, lead guitarist Omar Rodriguez-Lopez, vocalist Cedric Bixler-Zavala, and rhythm guitarist Paul Hinojos sat down for an intimate forty-minute set that included songs both old (“Televators,” from their debut LP) and new (an as-yet untitled song still in development). It was an unprecedented treat for longtime fans, but also a reminder that the band is capable of some truly impressive melodies, when it wants to be. [Read more]

Better Than Retro: Vancouver’s Black Mountain Keeps the Faith Underground

January 28, 2008

By Andrew William Smith, Editor

Born in 2004, Vancouver’s Black Mountain brings something special to the rock landscape. From early efforts that turned people like Chris Martin and Wayne Coyne into serious fans, the band earns its status as a collective of psychedelic superheroes. Like the self-titled debut that instantly invoked comparisons to Black Sabbath, the feverish follow-up plums the depths of rock’s timeless recipe for skin-tingling religiosity, dishing out equal doses of heartfelt insurrection, hefty imagination, and heady intoxication. [Read more]

With U23D, You Too Are Onstage

January 28, 2008

By Tracey Hackett, Contributing Editor

The song “Even Better Than the Real Thing” supplies the buzzwords for what many fans and critics are saying about the new U23D movie that premiered this month at the Sundance Film Festival and which was released to IMAX theaters on Wednesday.

[Read more]

The Editors Rock and Redeem in Nashville

January 26, 2008

By Shaun Rainone

Coming to Tennessee from across the pond, the Editors took Nashville by storm on an early January night. Watching with wide open eyes, I discovered this band in a new context.

On the second North American tour to support the strong, sophomore sleeper CD of 2007 An End Has A Start, the band proved worthy to claim this new era of well-articulated rock anthems. In this, the band is both blessed and cursed to follow some rather large footsteps. With a strong live performance, all of the comparisons and influences came alive, from U2 to Interpol to Joy Division to Depeche Mode. [Read more]

Sia Soothes A Mad World

January 17, 2008

By Justin Powell

Slow and soulful, Sia’s Some People Have Real Problems is an album set in the clouds. Sia’s voice is needy and gentle. It is longing and beautiful. Along with the soothing beat of the drums and piano, you are taken somewhere magical. Vocals soar and a new love begins. This album is meant to calm one’s world. Some People Have Real Problems isn’t impressive or epic. It is just right. Modern female solo vocalists could only dream of making such a solid record. Every note is just right and the mood is something you will find yourself always going back to. This is a great outing of soul and musical experience. For lovers of either or simply female vocals, this album is for you. [Read more]

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