1. Don Henley Brings a Wall of Sound to Country Cuts & Pop Hits at L.A.'s Forum: Live Review

    October 10, 2015 4:16 PM EDT 0 0 0 "This show is going to be all over the musical map," Don Henley warned the Forum crowd Friday night in Inglewood, Calif. "I don't like to live a monochromatic life." He was not exaggerating. The dozens of antique radios susp ...

  2. Maddie & Tae Bridge Country's Past And Present At New York's Highline Ballroom

    October 09, 2015 3:51 PM EDT 0 0 0 Maddie & Tae became an instant sensation when they released “Girl In A Country Song” in the summer of 2014. The lyrics cleverly eviscerated sexist tropes in country music by chopping and interpolating a series of recent hits from male stars, and ...

  3. Toby Keith Shows Off New Tricks (and Jimmy Buffett) on ‘35 mph Town’: Album Review

    October 09, 2015 1:11 PM EDT 0 0 0 Radio hits by country’s leading men have been criticized for relying on the usual tropes of trucks, pretty girls and six-packs. While Toby Keith certainly has drawn from these subjects during his 20-year career, his 18th studio LP, 35 mph Town , byp ...

  4. Garbage Turns Greek Theatre Tragedy Into Triumph: Concert Review

    October 09, 2015 3:56 AM EDT 0 0 0 Tonight Shirley Manson and her Garbage cohorts played just the third date of their short 20 Year Queer tour at the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles, and nothing came off as planned. Nothing. “Everything quite literally has gone to the f---ing shitter,” ...

  5. Tame Impala Brings Happy Daze to New York's Radio City Music Hall: Concert Review

    October 07, 2015 9:02 PM EDT Photo by Matthew Allen The giant green oscilloscope projected behind it and a keyboardist's knee-length white jacket might have suggested a laboratory of sound, but there was nothing sterile or scientific about  Tame Impala 's hazy, da ...

  6. Korn Plays Self-Titled Debut in NYC As Children of the Korn Keep Following Their Bagpipe-Playing Leader

    October 07, 2015 1:00 PM EDT 0 0 0 Years before Internet chat rooms enabled disenchanted youth to connect with one another, music remained one of the most prominent means of experiencing community and catharsis. This contingent, the teenage result of early '80s quality-time pare ...

  7. Janet Jackson Shows Off Her Resilience on 'Unbreakable': Album Review

    October 06, 2015 6:20 PM EDT 0 0 0 Janet Jackson ’s voice is a flute in an orchestra of trumpets and trombones. Unlike her ’80s coequals Madonna and Whitney Houston , Jackson had little success at the start of her career, especially given the expectations that came with her last name ...

  8. Dawes Unites Eclectic Lineup at L.A. Bluegrass Situation 2015: Live Review

    October 05, 2015 6:31 PM EDT 0 0 0 That rumbling you heard Saturday night in L.A. wasn’t approaching rainstorms, but rather the sound of Bill Monroe turning over in his grave at the thought of the word “bluegrass” being applied to any of the bands playing the Greek Theatre that night ...

  9. Toro y Moi Brings Chill But Not Climax to Music Hall of Williamsburg

    October 05, 2015 1:35 PM EDT 0 0 0 It's 9:45 on Friday night (Oct. 2) and the crowd at Music Hall of Williamsburg is getting antsy. The room, only half full 30 minutes prior, is now packed shoulder-to-shoulder with a slew of hipster Brooklynites standing in anticipation. The col ...

  10. Avicii Expands His Musical Reach on 'Stories': Album Review

    October 02, 2015 3:59 PM EDT 0 0 0 It’s time to stop calling Avicii EDM. If 2013’s  True was out to prove that a dance icon could ease into the pop arena, Stories is his bid for multi-format crossover. It’s also more playful and easeful than the debut, even as it expands True ’s reac ...

  11. Godspeed You! Black Emperor Storms Brooklyn, Shattering Eardrums And Psyches: Live Review

    October 02, 2015 3:30 PM EDT 0 0 0 For the uninitiated, Godspeed You! Black Emperor are a veteran instrumental octet from Montreal whose music combines such drastic extremes -- gorgeous melodies and deafening cacophony, beauty and ugliness, pin-drop quiet and innard-rattling volume, ...

  12. Oasis' '(What's the Story) Morning Glory?' at 20: Classic Track-by-Track Album Review

    October 02, 2015 9:30 AM EDT 0 0 0 Every few years, a British guitar band comes along and reminds everyone how bloody great British guitar bands can be. For all their wit and energy and funny haircuts, these groups tend to make crackling first albums and then flounder on the follow-u ...

  13. ‘Hamilton,’ the Best Broadway Musical in Years, Boasts an Equally Thrilling Cast Recording: Album Review

    October 01, 2015 2:33 PM EDT 1.431 k 330 21 2015’s best rap album isn’t by Drake , Kendrick Lamar or Dr. Dre  -- it’s the cast recording of Hamilton , a vital companion to the most creative, most talked-about musical to hit Broadway this millennium (read Billboard's cover story ...

  14. Pink Floyd Fans Gain Unique Insight into ‘The Wall’ with New Roger Waters Film: Review

    September 28, 2015 4:13 AM EDT 0 0 0 Between 2010 and 2013 Pink Floyd’s mastermind Roger Waters toured performing the band’s epic 1979 album The Wall . The historic outing marked the biggest worldwide tour by a solo artist and the shows were nothing short of a breathtaking feat of musi ...

  15. Irish Rockers Girl Band Bring the Noise on Powerful Debut ‘Holding Hands With Jamie’: Album Review

    September 25, 2015 6:16 PM EDT 0 0 0 Biologically speaking, the sensations of pleasure and pain are closely related, and Ireland’s Girl Band (a deliciously noisy quartet that is, naturally, all-male) straddles that line with no small amount of glee. On its full-length debut, Holding Ha ...

  16. King of Country George Strait Gets Personal on 'Cold Beer Conversation': Album Review

    September 25, 2015 4:34 PM EDT With a total of 60 Billboard No. 1 singles ( more than  Elvis Presley , more than  The Beatles ), George Strait has made it all seem effortless. His 29th studio album, which the singer co-produced with Chuck Ainlay, will likely add to that tal ...

  17. Jana Kramer Previews Country Album 'thirty one' Live in New York City

    September 24, 2015 1:45 PM EDT 0 0 0 In 1994, Alan Jackson released “Gone Country,” a track that poked fun at Nashville carpetbaggers. It’s an amusing, if not entirely accurate, song -- after all, Bob Dylan went country to record parts of Blonde On Blonde back in the ‘60s -- but it hel ...

  18. Ryan Adams’ ‘1989’ Taylor Swift Cover Record Takes 2010s Synth-Pop to Alt-Rock Past: Album Review

    September 24, 2015 11:42 AM EDT 3.113 k 176 39 Fourteen years since his biggest hit “New York, New York,” Ryan Adams’ idiosyncratic career arc takes him to “Welcome to New York,” the opening of a full-length take on Taylor Swift’s 1989 . Like Swift, the 40-year-old rocker is a Gotham tr ...

  19. One Direction’s ‘Infinity’ Review: New Ballad Limited by Lyrics

    September 22, 2015 2:00 PM EDT 4.663 k 1.843 k 49 One Direction has constructed legitimately moving power ballads before — and most memorably on its previous two albums — using the hushed verse-mammoth chorus blueprint, from “You and I” to “Ready to Run” to “Story of My Life.” “Infinit ...

  20. Slayer Still Shreds on ‘Repentless’: Album Review

    September 11, 2015 4:06 PM EDT 0 0 0 There was a time when it seemed Slayer could do no wrong. While 1980s thrash compatriots Metallica , Megadeth and Anthrax shifted musical direction or floundered commercially, the quartet persistently churned out some of the most extreme and thrilli ...

  21. Dr. Dre's 'Compton: A Soundtrack' Lives Up to Its Cinematic Aspirations: Album Review

    August 10, 2015 5:34 PM EDT 0 0 0 Not so long ago, rappers equated their albums, songs, studio sessions, even their partying with “making a movie,” as if their life moments were epic big-screen fare. But none -- save perhaps Kanye West ’s My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy  -- has ev ...

  22. Luke Bryan Celebrates 'Kill the Lights' at New York's Irving Plaza: Live Review

    August 08, 2015 3:15 PM EDT 0 0 0 The evolution of Luke Bryan 's career tracks remarkably closely with the recent trajectory of country music as a whole. The first song on his debut album, 2007's I'll Stay Me , is practically vintage honky-tonk. But as country moved a ...

  23. D.R.A.M. Releases Revamped '$' Featuring Donnie Trumpet: Listen

    August 03, 2015 6:51 PM EDT 0 0 0 D.R.A.M. , the Virginia singer best known for his single "Cha Cha," has released a reworked version of "$." The song was originally featured on his #1Epic EP, and now, with the help of Donnie Trumpet (as in Donnie Trumpet and the ...

  24. Danny Brown & Clams Casino Release New Track 'Worth It': Listen

    August 03, 2015 4:58 PM EDT 0 0 0 "Worth It," a new single from Danny Brown and Clams Casino, just dropped from Adult Swim's Singles 2015 -- 19 weeks of free songs, which also features DOOM, Run the Jewels and Flying Lotus . Danny Brown Writing Children's Book &# ...

  25. FKA Twigs Premieres Otherworldly New Track 'Figure 8': Listen

    August 03, 2015 3:30 PM EDT 0 0 0 "Let me live through your lights," FKA Twigs echoes on her new track "Figure 8." From the get-go, the song -- which premiered Monday (Aug. 3) on Zane Lowe's Beats 1 Radio -- sucks its listener in to an astonishingly entranci ...

  26. Dolly Parton Makes Triumphant Return to the Ryman: Live Review

    August 02, 2015 6:32 PM EDT 0 0 0 The year was 1959. Thirteen-year old Dolly Parton had traveled to Nashville with her Uncle Bill Owens to see the Grand Ole Opry at its then-current home, the Ryman Auditorium. That night, she wound up making her debut performance on the stage -- tha ...

  27. Shania Twain Proves That She’s Still Got It at Nashville Concert: Live Review

    August 01, 2015 3:41 PM EDT 5.47 k 188 1 When Shania Twain announced plans for a tour in March, there had to have been a few skeptics. I will admit -- I was one of them. After all, it had been more than a decade since she had been on tour, and one had to wonder about the relevance o ...

  28. Rapper Gunplay Shows Both Sides of His Personality on Wild Debut ‘Living Legend’: Album Review

    July 31, 2015 5:51 PM EDT 0 0 0 Some critics view rapper Gunplay as a caricature: braids in a ball, pills in a pile, guns on the floor. And sure, the Miami native has called himself the “human L.A. riot,” but he also has articulated a street survivor’s remorse in compelling ways. ...

  29. Natalie Imbruglia Takes on the Boys With a Feminine Twist on ‘Male’: Album Review

    July 31, 2015 5:46 PM EDT In 1997, Natalie Imbruglia sprinkled fairy dust all over “Torn,” her hit Ednaswap cover. On Male , her first album since 2009, the Aussie singer-actress works more remake magic on tunes originally performed by such male acts as Neil Young , Death C ...

  30. Migos Set the Trend -- Again -- With ‘Yung Rich Nation’: Album Review

    July 31, 2015 11:50 AM EDT 0 0 0 Since their 2013 breakthrough mixtape  YRN , the exuberant, motormouthed trio of Quavo, Takeoff and Offset, collectively known as Migos , have settled into their role as Atlanta trap rap’s most reliable and influential party-starters. That tape hous ...

  31. One Direction, ‘Drag Me Down’ Single Review: 1D Becomes Larger Than Life

    July 31, 2015 10:45 AM EDT 0 0 0 On one hand, One Direction ’s new single “Drag Me Down” offers the “mature” sound that the group members has been boasting about in the lead-up to their fifth studio album. If 2014's Four found the boys still dabbling in mid-70’s arena-rock, th ...

  32. ‘Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry’s Vision of Paradise’ Documentary Goes on a Colorful Journey With Dub’s Nutty Professor: Film Review

    July 27, 2015 3:23 PM EDT 0 0 0 The pioneering accomplishments of reggae's most eccentric producer-vocalist aren't just thoroughly documented in Lee "Scratch" Perry' s Vision of Paradise -- they're reimagined as the actions of a superhero fighting evi ...

  33. Bea Miller Rebels With Rocking Debut ‘Not an Apology’: Album Review

    July 27, 2015 11:45 AM EDT "I'm not a paper doll/Can't make me what you want," Bea Miller seethes on "Paper Doll," one of the many songs on her debut album marked by resistance to authority figures and chugging rock riffs. The mantra suits th ...

  34. Nicki Minaj Takes Jabs at Drake With Meek Mill, Brings Out Lil Wayne: Live Review

    July 27, 2015 10:30 AM EDT “The men are like, ‘Why did I come here?’” Nicki Minaj said, giggling, after a brief tirade on the thanklessness of that particular gender. Strutting across the stage in all gold -- looking like the world’s most curvaceous awards show statuette ...

  35. Skepta and Grime Come to New York City: Live Review

    July 26, 2015 12:36 PM EDT The speedy branch of rap known as grime -- an English mixture of hip-hop and strains of dance music, like garage and drum and bass -- is having a moment in America. Skepta , currently grime's most visible practitioner on this side of the Atl ...

  36. Meghan Trainor Dazzles L.A. Crowd After Vocal Hemorrhage Recovery: Live Review

    July 25, 2015 3:06 PM EDT 0 0 0 After postponing multiple tour dates on her MTrainTour due to a hemorrhage on her vocal cords , Meghan Trainor  was back in full swing at The Hollywood Palladium in Los Angeles on Friday (July 24). Trainor posted on Instagram in early July that she ...

  37. AC/DC's 'Back In Black' at 35: Classic Track-by-Track Album Review

    July 25, 2015 9:00 AM EDT 10.746 k 312 264 On AC/DC 's Back In Black , half the song titles would make badass tattoo slogans, and the other half are things you'd say to someone in a bar at 2 a.m. This alone doesn't make the album that special (the same is more or le ...

  38. 5 Seconds of Summer Cranks Up the Amps With 'She's Kinda Hot,' Plus More of the Week's Best and Worst New Singles

    July 24, 2015 2:38 PM EDT 0 0 0 Courtesy Photo 5 Seconds of Summer "She's Kinda Hot" Capitol 5SOS has been routinely branded as a "boy band," but that's a misnomer. The Aussie quartet cranks up the amps on "She's Kinda Hot," shirking br ...

  39. Deftones Triumphs, Incubus Coasts Along at Co-Headlining Tour Opener: Live Review

    July 23, 2015 12:10 PM EDT 0 0 0 In 2000, Deftones embarked on a U.S. tour in promotion of White Pony , bringing along Incubus as support. The latter had just reached platinum status with their third studio album Make Yourself , which featured the three charting singles "Stell ...

  40. EVVY Dances the Storm Away With New Single 'Tidal Wave': Exclusive Premiere

    July 23, 2015 10:30 AM EDT 0 0 0 With her new single "Tidal Wave," New York City-based songstress EVVY stays calm in the face of a storm. "Sometimes we come face to face with uncontrollable and destructive forces like a tidal wave," she says. "In the end, w ...

  41. Sublime’s New Iteration Wears Even Thinner on Reggae-Rock Rehash ‘Sirens’: Album Review

    July 21, 2015 6:34 PM EDT Weed has become more potent since deceased Sublime vocalist Bradley Nowell sang a cover of "Smoke Two Joints" on his band's seminal 40 oz. to Freedom in 1992. Still, you'd have to be pretty high to not be at least a little of ...

  42. Future Pledges Allegiance to Highs & Lows of Self-Medication on 'Dirty Sprite 2': Album Review

    July 21, 2015 1:20 PM EDT 0 0 0 On DS2 , the third major label album from Atlanta's Future , the rapper makes things clear from the outset: "I just f---ed your bitch in some Gucci flip-flops," he announces on opener "Thought It Was a Drought." He then admi ...

  43. Country Singer Ashley Monroe Goes Adult Contemporary With ‘The Blade’: Album Review

    July 21, 2015 1:00 PM EDT 0 0 0 No song has endeared Ashley Monroe more to critics -- especially those with a disdain for contemporary country -- than "Weed Instead of Roses," an irreverent honky-tonk about chemically enhancing a stale sex life. Songs like this have led ...

  44. Prince Royce Makes a Play for Pop’s Throne With ‘Double Vision’: Album Review

    July 21, 2015 12:38 PM EDT 0 0 0 In the Spanish-speaking world, Prince Royce is already a brand-name ­superstar. He scored his first No. 1 on the Hot Latin Songs chart with his 2010 debut at the age of 20. That song, "Corazon Sin Cara," was a soft-focus ode to ­unconditio ...

  45. Ryn Weaver's Live Show Proves as Titillating as Her Debut Album, 'The Fool': Concert Review

    July 20, 2015 9:04 PM EDT 0 0 0 Probably the last thing you'd take away from Ryn Weaver 's newly released debut, The Fool , is that the San Diego native is a poppy girl who just wants to have fun. So it was slightly startling to see her seem borderline confectionary as h ...

  46. The Chemical Brothers Make a Triumphant Return After Five Years With ‘Born in the Echoes’: Album Review

    July 20, 2015 4:09 PM EDT 0 0 0 In The Chemical Brothers ' world, it's always 1997. Dig Your Own Hole , the commercial breakthrough of Tom Rowlands and Ed Simons' long-running electronic-dance ­partnership, came out ages ago by the rapidly progressing standards of c ...

  47. The-Dream Sticks to the Script on ‘Crown Jewel’: Album Review

    July 20, 2015 3:41 PM EDT 0 0 0 Months after ­co-writing Rihanna 's 2007 smash "Umbrella," Terius " The-Dream " Nash released Love/Hate , an album of insistent R&B songs about fast cars and women with winking hooks like "Show me the green light.&q ...

  48. Slayer Keeps Killing It On Mayhem Festival Tour: Live Review

    July 19, 2015 12:05 PM EDT When Hellyeah singer Chad Gray was stamping about the main stage at the Camden, N.J., stop of the Rockstar Energy Mayhem Festival on July 17, a topic was clearly weighing on his mind. "Today is a f---ing celebration. Today is a continuatio ...

  49. Kelsea Ballerini Captivates at New York Headlining Debut: Live Review

    July 18, 2015 12:00 PM EDT 0 0 0 "Are we listening to country in New York?!" the evening's host demanded, directing his faux-disbelief at the less-than-crowded room. Yes, yes we were -- and it wasn't as improbable as it might seem. Kelsea Ballerini , country rad ...

  50. Dale Watson Preaches the Virtues of Ameripolitan: Live Review

    July 13, 2015 7:23 PM EDT 0 0 0 Back in 1995, Dale Watson recorded a song bemoaning the state of modern country music. "I'm too country now for country," he declared, "just like Johnny Cash ." The singer then turned to an elder statesmen for guidance: &quo ...

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