Julien Baker, Phoebe Bridgers, Lucy Dacus, and the story of indie rock’s best new supergroup

Julien Baker, Phoebe Bridgers, and Lucy Dacus make records that seemingly flaunt their loneliness to make the listener feel less alone. Devastatingly honest, each singer-songwriter’s most recent record—Baker’s Turn Out The Lights, Bridgers’ Stranger In The Alps, and Dacus’ Historian, all out in the past year or…

Solange's A Seat At The Table follow-up is nearly finished, will reportedly drop this fall

Solange, the pop artist responsible for 2016's neo-soul masterpiece A Seat At The Table, is the subject of a fascinating, far-ranging new profile in The New York Times. The piece explores her early albums and recent forays into performance art, but it also contains a juicy promise for fans: Her new album is not only…

Fembots, dancing queens, and love fools: 60 minutes of Swedish pop

A 2013 article in The Atlantic asked a very good, non-rhetorical question: “Why is Sweden so good at pop music?” The fascinating article outlined some potential answers—prioritization of melodies, government support of artistic endeavors, a supportive community, embrace of cutting-edge technology and sounds—but missed…

Lil Wayne’s long-overdue Tha Carter V, plus High On Fire and more in this week’s music reviews

Lil Wayne’s long-delayed Tha Carter V has enough highlights to carry it through, while metal vets High On Fire offer one of their most ass-kicking albums yet, and Philly DIY rockers Swearin’ return restless and reflective on Fall Into The Sun. Plus, we look at the third LP from Death Valley Girls, Darkness Rains.

Robyn, Thom Yorke’s Suspiria score, and 18 more scary-good albums out this month

The spooky season is nearly here, and with it will come John Carpenter’s excellent soundtrack for the Halloween series’ 11th installment and Thom Yorke’s music for Luca Guadagnino’s masterful Suspiria remake. Beyond horror scores, October offers exciting new records from High On Fire, Robyn, Daughters, Julia Holter,…

40 years after Are We Not Men? we’re just now starting to get Devo

Devo was finished. The quintet—brothers Jerry and Bob Casale and Mark, Bob, and Jim Mothersbaugh—had gotten about as far as they could in their hometown of Akron, Ohio. The former Rubber Capital of the World would eventually find a secondary renown for producing musical outcasts, but in the mid-1970s, its barflies,…

Cher does ABBA, BROCKHAMPTON sprawls out, and more in this week’s music reviews

Of course Cher pulls off the ABBA tribute Dancing Queen. Elsewhere BROCKHAMPTON continues to reveal new shades on Iridescence, and The Joy Formidable’s Aaarth boasts its most off-kilter anthems yet. Plus, we take a look at Chicago indie-rocker Lillie West’s second outing as Lala Lala.

Christine And The Queens’ swaggering Chris revels in fluid identities

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When Christine And The Queens emerged with 2015’s self-titled effort, the album was a welcome antidote to sterile pop music. Héloïse Letissier, the French musician behind the project, wasn’t just a refreshingly honest songwriter. She was also a mesmerizing live performer who seemed to melt into rhythms and grooves—and…

Robyn finally confirms new album, Honey, out next month

It’s been eight long years since Robyn’s career-defining Body Talk LPs, and though she’s released a handful of collaborative singles and shorter projects in the meantime, the wait for a new solo full-length from the Swedish pop artist is almost over: Honey will arrive October 26 via Interscope and Robyn’s own label,…

60 minutes proving De La Soul is one of hip-hop’s greats—but its legacy is in danger

De La Soul is one of the most culturally significant and musically influential hip-hop groups from the late ’80s and ’90s, but you wouldn’t know it from looking at the current digital realm of music that actually gets listened to. That’s because, by and large, De La Soul isn’t there. Thanks to a messy thicket of legal…

Jóhann Jóhansson embraces the void on the doom-metal influenced Mandy soundtrack

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Although the film’s aesthetic owes just as much to bad-trip ’70s psychedelia, the phrase you’ll hear most often when describing the psychotronic new Nicolas Cage vehicle Mandy is “heavy metal.” (In his review for The A.V. Club, Ignatiy Vishnevetsky says it has “enough vintage MTV fog machines to kill a hair metal…

Sing-alongs and bare asses: Nostalgia ruled at this year’s Riot Fest

Riot Fest 2018 was an oddly muted affair. No big reunions or “one time only” performances of the kind that have so thrilled festivalgoers in times past, like Jawbreaker getting back together last year or L7 in 2015. Instead, there was a comforting procession of longtime stalwarts (Bouncing Souls, Andrew W.K.) and…

Weird Al emerged, post-punk exploded, and DJing matured in 1981

1. Kim Carnes, “Bette Davis Eyes”
2. Diana Ross & Lionel Richie, “Endless Love”
3. Kenny Roger, “Lady”
4. John Lennon, “(Just Like) Starting Over”
5. Rick Springfield, “Jessie’s Girl”
6. Kool & The Gang, “Celebration”
7. Hall & Oates, “Kiss On My List”
8. Eddie Rabbitt, “I Love A Rainy Night”
9. Dolly Parton, “9 To 5”
10. REO
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Celebrate Amy Winehouse's birthday with this playlist of the singer at her best 

Just short of 10 years ago, the world lost one of its brightest new talents in Amy Winehouse. As a young British singer whose soulful voice sounded as if it came from another era, a musician whose fresh sound drew from an eclectic mix of genres, and a writer who could crank out an enduring hit in a couple of hours,…