1. Alt-Rockers X Ambassadors Take a Page From Imagine Dragons on ‘VHS’: Album Review

    July 03, 2015 9:00 AM EDT 0 0 0 The stalled momentum of 2013's alt-radio breakouts Imagine Dragons has left the door open for another genre-­neutral act to invade the airwaves, further redefining what a rock band in 2015 can be. Enter X Ambassadors , who share the Dragons ...

  2. Meek Mill Shows the Dark Side of the American Dream on 'Dreams Worth More Than Money': Album Review

    July 02, 2015 7:03 PM EDT 0 0 0 Meek Mill 's long-delayed Dreams Worth More Than Money  may be just the Philadelphia rapper's second official full-length but it feels like much more.  F ollowing up his 2012 debut,  Dreams & Nightmares ,  Mill's cultural footprin ...

  3. Fetty Wap Dominates Lukewarm 2015 XXL Freshmen NYC Show: Live Review

    July 01, 2015 1:25 PM EDT 0 0 0 New York City's Best Buy Theater was packed with rowdy teenagers for the annual XXL Freshmen show last night, June 30, featuring a group of rappers who are ready for the spotlight. The list is supposed to co-sign a variation of talent that has ...

  4. Demi Lovato Gets Aggressive on Red-Hot ‘Cool For The Summer’: Single Review

    July 01, 2015 11:49 AM EDT 0 0 0 Love it or hate it, Demi Lovato 's "Cool For The Summer" is undeniably the pop star's most self-assured statement to date. The new single shoves the listener into blissful submission, as the former Disney star swaps out the breat ...

  5. Shania Twain's Rock This Country Tour Brings Her Timeless Talent to MSG

    July 01, 2015 11:35 AM EDT 0 0 0 Given all that’s changed over the last 10 years, both in her personal life and the corner of the pop universe she helped design, Shania Twain could’ve put together a very different farewell tour. It’s called Rock This Country, her triumphant return ...

  6. St. Vincent, Beastie Boys' Ad-Rock Join High Schoolers in David Byrne-Curated Tribute to Color Guard: Concert Review

    June 30, 2015 5:59 PM EDT 0 0 0 Is there any figure in popular music as persistently, publicly curious as David Byrne ? Whether pioneering collage music with Brian Eno , fusing African funk with chilly New Wave, or helping introduce Americans to Tropicália and Afro-Peruvian sounds ...

  7. Richard Thompson Pulls Double Duty at Town Hall by Opening for Himself: Concert Review

    June 29, 2015 2:49 PM EDT 0 0 0 "We don't want you leaving early, so we're playing the mediocre stuff first," Richard Thompson joked, responding to a fan's shouted request midway through his set Friday night at New York's Town Hall. "Then we' ...

  8. Rush Rocks Harder Than Ever at 40th Anniversary Tour Stop in New Jersey: Live Review

    June 28, 2015 2:45 PM EDT 0 0 0 When it comes to Rush , people tend fall into two groups: those who get the band and those who don't. When the Canadian icons played the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J., on June 27, the 18,000-seat arena was obviously stuffed with fans who ha ...

  9. Ryn Weaver Makes Smart Move With Alt-Pop Debut ‘The Fool’: Album Review

    June 26, 2015 6:12 PM EDT 0 0 0 On debut LP The Fool , pop anomaly Ryn Weaver , 22, strikes a difficult, delicate balance between personal and universal. Her rebellious lyrics draw from both her real-life struggles as a woman and an artist and celestial themes that transcend them. ...

  10. Nina Simone Documentary 'What Happened, Miss Simone?' Brings Vital Cohesion to a Complex Life: Film Review

    June 26, 2015 6:03 PM EDT 0 0 0 "I want to shake people up so bad that when they leave a nightclub where I perform, I want them to be to pieces." That is the late jazz/soul/gospel visionary Nina Simone in one of the many lost recordings that director Liz Garbus and crew ...

  11. The Rolling Stones' Iconic 'Sticky Fingers' Reissue and 'From The Vault: The Marquee Club Live in 1971' DVD Give a Vintage Front-Row View: Review

    June 25, 2015 1:57 PM EDT 0 0 0 The Rolling Stones are possibly the most fiscally fit rock band in history, so it's wildly out-of-character that they've been so lax about digging into their voluminous vaults. While everyone else was cleaning out their closets during the ...

  12. James Taylor is Still Soul-Searching on 'Before This World': Album Review

    June 23, 2015 5:29 PM EDT Like all New Englanders, James Taylor loves road trips. "My favorite thing is to miss my home when I'm gone," sings the 67-year-old Massachusetts native on the bluesy "Stretch of Highway," a cut from Before This World , h ...

  13. Raury Brings His Unique Mash Of Genres To The Highline Ballroom: Live Review

    June 23, 2015 1:30 PM EDT 0 0 0 Raury , a 19-year-old singer-songwriter, emerged in 2014 with a story like an artistic fairy-tale. He played foot-stomping folk speckled with hip-hop, which seemed to situate him a long way from pop's center. But the center made room, scooped h ...

  14. Miguel Chooses His Path (Sort Of) on 'Wildheart': Album Review

    June 23, 2015 10:00 AM EDT 0 0 0 Ever since his 2012 breakthrough hit single "Adorn," Miguel Pimentel has faced a contradiction: There's the 21st-century loverman vibe much of his public wants him to incarnate -- a new-generation R. Kelly, without the repellent bagga ...

  15. Blood Orange & Yoko Ono Bring In the Sunrise at MOMA: Live Review

    June 22, 2015 4:00 PM EDT 0 0 0 In the internet era, music is less grounded in specific experiences: you can download or stream whatever, whenever, wherever. Partly as a response to that, there's been an increase in live music events with the intention to create a unique set ...

  16. Vince Staples Paints a Vivid Picture on His Full-Length Debut 'Summertime '06': Album Review

    June 22, 2015 3:35 PM EDT 0 0 0 Most people look back at the summers of their youth as a dreamy mix of beach trips, bike rides and puppy-love crushes. But rapper Vince Staples , on his debut full-length Summertime '06 , has different memories: running from police, dead bodies ...

  17. Nate Ruess’ Solo Debut ‘Grand Romantic’ Is Better and Brighter Than Its Singles: Album Review

    June 22, 2015 2:03 PM EDT 0 0 0 Nate Ruess  has been a busy frontman for nearly 15 years -- the first half spent with pop-punk trio The Format , and the rest with Fun. , whose surprise Grammy-winning breakthrough in 2012 turned him into a star. The latter's big-belted, blue-c ...

  18. Dance Music Godfather Giorgio Moroder Returns After Three Decades With All-Star 'Deja-Vu': Album Review

    June 22, 2015 12:46 PM EDT 0 0 0 When dance music inevitably builds a hall of fame (probably somewhere on the Vegas Strip), Giorgio Moroder could ­justifiably be the first inductee. As one of the founding fathers of disco, Moroder was among the first musicians to introduce ­synthes ...

  19. Romeo Santos Concert Review: A Musical Tour de Force for a Bilingual Generation

    June 22, 2015 12:30 PM EDT 0 0 0 Reviews of Romeo Santos live shows tend to center on his titillating finale; you know, the part where he gets a fan onstage and performs  his hit “Propuesta Indecente” under the sheets of a red bed. But a Santos performance, as evidenced by the last ...

  20. 2PM Are Subtle, Seductive Gentleman on 'No.5': Track-by-Track Album Review

    June 18, 2015 8:05 PM EDT 0 0 0 Last year, 2PM  showed off their party-boy sides with their funky  Go Crazy!  album that incorporated new and unexpected sounds to their proven R&B formula. Less than a year later, the sextet are back with No.5  that represents their fifth, full ...

  21. Slayer Slays Long Island Concert Crowd, Calls to 'Kill the Kardashians': Live Review

    June 18, 2015 2:04 AM EDT 0 0 0 Tuesday night at the Paramount in Long Island, New York was a black tee affair as fans of Slayer slinked into the 1,500-capacity vanue for a scorching lesson in classic American thrash metal by the band that helped birth the genre. But one shirt sto ...

  22. Epik High Defy Conventions, Electrify Audiences in New York: Live Review

    June 16, 2015 6:40 PM EDT 0 0 0 By the standards of most K-pop concerts, Epik High shouldn't be playing to an earsplitting, sold-out crowd. The trio's last album was made up of emo hip-hop cuts, they don't perform choreography, there's no flashy stage setup, tw ...

  23. Scottish Producer Hudson Mohawke Goes From EDM to Rap and Back on 'Lantern': Album Review

    June 16, 2015 2:49 PM EDT 0 0 0 Back when Hudson Mohawke was crafting bombastic synth-scapes in his mom's Glasgow ­basement in the 2000s, the idea of him collaborating with Lil Wayne and Pusha T was but a left-field electro nerd's distant fantasy. Years later, the produc ...

  24. Kacey Musgraves' 'Pageant Material' Is Sharper and More Nashville-Friendly: Album Review

    June 16, 2015 11:11 AM EDT 0 0 0 The Southern adage "Don't get above your raisin'," memorialized as a song title by Lester Flatt & Earl Scruggs in 1951, has long been a guideline for ­country artists. It even dictates their choices in pronouns: always the hu ...

  25. Don Omar's 'The Last Don II': Track-by-Track Review

    June 15, 2015 9:36 PM EDT 0 0 0 Album revisits reggaeton star's 2003 debut. Back in 2003, Don Omar , a rising reggaetón act from Puerto Rico, released his solo debut album. The Last Don -- featuring the likes of Daddy Yankee and Hector “El Father,” came in the wake of hugely ...

  26. Raury Lures & Lambastes on New Single 'Devil's Whisper': Listen

    June 15, 2015 6:11 PM EDT 0 0 0 It has been quite a year for Raury , the music industry’s favorite indigo child, who first stepped onto the scene in the spring of ’14 with the free-spirited visuals for “God’s Whisper.” Now, one mixtape and various collaborations later, Raury shows ...

  27. Of Monsters and Men Sink Their Teeth Into 'Beneath the Skin': Album Review

    June 15, 2015 3:00 PM EDT 0 0 0 Should some intrepid director make a movie out of My Head Is an Animal , the 2011 debut from Icelandic arena-folk ­adventurers Of Monsters and Men , he or she will need lots of wildlife wranglers and CGI but only a handful of actual actors. A surpri ...

  28. Muse Aims High But Hits Somewhere in the Middle With ‘Drones’: Album Review

    June 12, 2015 4:29 PM EDT 0 0 0 Muse treads between sublime and ridiculous more than any rock band in recent memory, with jaw-dropping pretention that makes it hard to tell if they're just having a laugh. Drones is, of course, a concept album, about, ­according to the liner n ...

  29. Tamia Makes Stability Seductive on 'Love Life': Album Review

    June 12, 2015 2:56 PM EDT 0 0 0 Few singers make marriage sound as sexy as Tamia does on her sixth album, Love Life . Monogamy anthems are a staple for the singer, 40, who has been married to former NBA star Grant Hill for 16 years. On Love Life , she elegantly touches on the vexi ...

  30. Mariah Carey's Self-Titled Debut at 25: Classic Track-by-Track Review

    June 12, 2015 2:30 PM EDT 7.525 k 897 4 Revisiting the 11-track collection that jumpstarted one of the most successful stories in pop music history. After the flash, glitz and glamor that governed '80s pop music, the woman who would become the next decade’s biggest act seemed ...

  31. Joan Manuel Serrat Exhibition Reveals the Man Behind the Mythic Barcelona Musical Icon

    June 11, 2015 12:40 PM EDT 0 0 0 Barcelona show documenting Joan Manuel Serrat’s 50-year career will travel to Montevideo next. Serrat: 50 Years of Songs is the simple title for an exhibition that goes further, documenting the life and times of Barcelona’s most famous musical son. ...

  32. Hip Hop and Pop Punk Fans Come Together for Wiz Khalifa & Fall Out Boy's Tour

    June 11, 2015 12:15 PM EDT Rapper Wiz Khalifa and veteran pop-punkers  Fall Out Boy may on the surface appear to be an unlikely pairing, but on a warm summer night at the Susquehanna Bank Center in Camden, NJ, the cross-pollination of the two genres worked. The Boys of Zumm ...

  33. GoldLink Brings His Future Bounce to Brooklyn: Live Review

    June 10, 2015 12:45 PM EDT 0 0 0 The rapper GoldLink has a term for his music: future bounce. "Future bounce is still yet undefined," the rapper told Complex last year. "But I like to… imagine Montell Jordan 's 'This Is How We Do It' on crack." Th ...

  34. Chi-Town Rapper Lil Durk Balances Grit and Gloss on Major-Label Debut: Album Review

    June 09, 2015 11:44 AM EDT 0 0 0 Since the steely Chicago rap subgenre known as drill exploded in 2012, Lil Durk , 22, has arguably become the scene's most consistent voice. He earned cult status with his Auto-Tuned, half-sung flows, but the melodies never distracted from the ...

  35. Jamie XX Taps Dance Music’s Past for Wildly Imaginative Debut ‘In Colour’: Album Review

    June 08, 2015 5:19 PM EDT Jamie xx is 26 years old, which means he was barely out of diapers during the heyday of '90s U.K. rave culture, which provides the heart, soul and inspiration for his jaw-dropping solo debut, In Colour . The xx member (real name: Jamie Smith) ...

  36. Jason Derulo Struggles to Find Himself on His All-Star ‘Everything Is 4’: Album Review

    June 08, 2015 12:25 PM EDT Jason Derulo 's 2014 smash "Talk Dirty" was more than a comeback hit for the pop veteran: It was a much-needed game-changer. After years of producing slick, inoffensive dance singles like "Whatcha Say" and "The Other ...

  37. The 7 Björk-iest Things About Björk's Governors Ball Set

    June 07, 2015 2:38 PM EDT 8.14 k 190 0 On Saturday (June 6), Björk played the main stage at the end of day two of Governor’s Ball to tens of thousands of people. It’s a big moment for any musician, even one as legendary as Björk. But anyone who thought Björk would tone down her hi ...

  38. Diplo’s Major Lazer Finds Its Footing In the World of Pop With 'Peace Is the Mission': Album Review

    June 05, 2015 12:45 PM EDT 0 0 0 Long a quirky, inconsistent side project of dance's busiest all-over-the-place producer, Diplo 's reggae-inspired Major Lazer outfit comes into sharper focus on its third album. Known for his muscular beats, the Mad Decent boss recently to ...

  39. D.R.A.M. Brings the Cha-Cha to Brooklyn: Live Review

    June 04, 2015 3:45 PM EDT 0 0 0 In the last few years, the Internet has helped create a new class of one-hit wonders: young artists, mostly in rap or R&B, who create a song that suddenly explodes in popularity on SoundCloud, YouTube, Vine or all three. When Beyonce posted an I ...

  40. Chiquis Rivera Pays Tribute to Mom Jenni Rivera and Makes Her Own Mark With Debut Album 'Ahora': Track-by-Track Review

    June 02, 2015 1:03 PM EDT 0 0 0 The late, great banda singer Jenni Rivera once said “haters are just confused fans.” So it makes sense that although Jenni’s eldest daughter Chiquis seems to have an equal ratio of the latter to gung-ho cheerleaders, this in no way has deterred her ...

  41. Erykah Badu Brings Soul to 8th Annual Roots Picnic: Concert Review

    June 01, 2015 10:10 AM EDT 0 0 0 The idea of "soul music" has become a shell of its former self, bringing to mind only the legacies of aging greats and their halfhearted pop progeny. At Saturday's (May 30) eighth annual Roots Picnic, however, audience members receive ...

  42. Donnie Trumpet & The Social Experiment Aim To Melt Your Cynicism On 'Surf'

    May 30, 2015 3:28 PM EDT 0 0 0 The origins of Surf , Donnie Trumpet & The Social Experiment's new release, are hard to explain. A lot of the attention the album's received stems from the involvement of Chance the Rapper , a virtuosic MC from Chicago, though this isn ...

  43. A$AP Rocky’s 'At.Long.Last.A$AP' Is the Perfect Experiment: Album Review

    May 29, 2015 11:39 AM EDT 0 0 0 Two years after Beyonce 's self-titled coup, the term "surprise album" has become a misnomer, especially in hip-hop. In the first three months of 2015, Drake , Kendrick Lamar and Earl Sweatshirt all dropped records with little to no w ...

  44. U2 Delivers Life-Affirming Show Following Tour Manager's Unexpected Death

    May 28, 2015 3:27 PM EDT 1.038 k 181 85 To the question of whether Wednesday (May 27) night's U2 show was demonstrably more emotional than usual in response to the death that morning of longtime tour manager Dennis Sheehan, you'd almost have to ask: How would you know, ...

  45. The Who Celebrates 50 Years at Brooklyn's Barclays Center: Live Review

    May 28, 2015 11:00 AM EDT 0 0 0 For someone who recently declared that he doesn't enjoy performing,  Pete Townshend  sure puts on a pretty good front…an "Eminence Front," if you will. Performing a two-hour, hits-heavy set as part of their aptly named " The Who ...

  46. Leikeli47 Does Her Own Thing At The Mercury Lounge: Live Review

    May 27, 2015 3:46 PM EDT 0 0 0 Young rapper Leikeli47 occupies a lane of her own. She announces this on her song "Miss America" ("I am an individual, I live in my own world") and she backs up the big talk. While most rappers ignore politics, this one does not. ...

  47. Boosie Badazz Presents His Post-Prison Second Chapter on ‘Touch Down 2 Cause Hell’: Album Review

    May 26, 2015 1:30 PM EDT Baton Rouge, LA., hometown hero Boosie Badazz (formerly Lil Boosie ) has always rapped with palpable urgency. His voice, ­arguably his most distinctive feature, is a piercing drawl that demands attention and drips with pathos. But after finishing ...

  48. Florence & The Machine Displays Different Kind of Vulnerability on ‘How Big How Blue How Beautiful’: Album Review

    May 26, 2015 11:30 AM EDT 1.867 k 71 0 Since Florence Welch made her debut in 2009, she has created music that turns heads and widens eyes. There's no doubt she's a ­flamboyantly imaginative writer and a captivating vocalist and performer. Yet her first two albums, with ...

  49. Drake Changes 'Madonna' Lyrics to Rihanna at Jungle Tour Opener in Houston: Live Review

    May 25, 2015 11:40 AM EDT 0 0 0 Drake knew he flubbed at Coachella. The rapper had already heard all of the criticisms of his headlining set at the festival in April. He promised that he wasn't going to have a show similar to that, one where he seemed like a boy delivering am ...

  50. SHINee Embrace Old & New Sounds on 'Odd': Track-by-Track Review

    May 21, 2015 6:15 PM EDT 0 0 0 Despite initially debuting with a R&B sound , SHINee is arguably most exciting when experimenting -- like when they mashed two album tracks together to promote the "hybrid remix" single "Sherlock" in 2012 or added a pop senti ...

Pages