Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
Sunday, December 15th, 2019  

Album Reviews


Richard Dawson

Dec 13, 2019 Web Exclusive

England's finest troubadour Richard Dawson returns here with a sonic kaleidoscope that glimpses the puzzle pieces of the UK in its current state and recounts Dawson's frustrations, pain, and joy in a consistently novel, affecting, and inventive way.


Sunn O)))

Dec 12, 2019 Web Exclusive

After plumbing the depths of drone, ambient, and metal genres for 21 years, Sunn O))) are still uncovering new ways to create deep sounds and resonant frequencies.

The Soft Bulletin Recorded Live at Red Rocks with The Colorado Symphony Orchestra

The Flaming Lips
The Soft Bulletin Recorded Live at Red Rocks with The Colorado Symphony Orchestra

Dec 11, 2019 Web Exclusive

Picture yourself in the mid-to-late '80s tooling around with your best buddies in a white van with little more than the handful of musical instruments you begged and borrowed for. Maybe to up your psychedelic credibility you have a bubble machine and a light-up rainbow spinner ball to splash a little color across the walls of the ramshackle clubs where you've managed to land gigs.

Classic Interviews

Happy Pills

Happy Pills
A Ten-Year Prescription

Oct 06, 2010 Web Exclusive

Some countries are known exporters. The U.K. has been a rock giant ever since the Fab Four busted out of their borders, Sweden has carved out a notable Scandinavian pop niche, and Canada has been busy breaking social scenes and setting arcades on fire for some time now. But what about other countries whose bands don’t always make it to stateside indie stardom? In such an interconnected world, why are there still large places on the musical map with question marks? On a recent visit to Poland to cover the OFF FestivalUnder the Radar set out to fill in some of those blanks. Assisting our exploration were musicians Natalia Fiedorczuk, Jacek Kąkolewski. Both scene stalwarts, and members of Happy Pills—a six piece who take cues from Pixies, Sonic Youth, and Smashing Pumpkins among others—they told us about the Polish music scene, cultural expectations, and their big break in the U.S. that didn’t happen.

Comic Book Reviews

The Weatherman Vol. 1

Apr 05, 2019 Issue #65 - Mitski and boygenius

Collecting the first six issues of the series by writer Jody LeHeup, artist Nathan Fox, and colorist Dave Stewart, The Weatherman scratched our sci-fi/action/adventure itch better than anything has since Schwarzenegger's big-screen heyday. 


Jimmy Eat World on “Surviving”

Jimmy Eat World on “Surviving”

Dec 12, 2019 Web Exclusive

"I was a passenger in my own body for 36 years and never realized it." The opening line of Jim Adkins' personal statement issued with Jimmy Eat World's newest album, Surviving, reveals the personal nature of the material within. Adkins, the band's frontman and lyricist, has been wrestling with identity and fear, expectations and pressure.

Jay Som on “Anak Ko”

Jay Som on “Anak Ko”

Dec 11, 2019 Issue #66 - My Favorite Album - Angel Olsen and Sleater-Kinney

Melina Duterte has no need for embellishment. Ask her how she came up with the title of her third full-length release as Jay Som, Anak Ko, and she admits it has no particular connection to the album. 

Pleased to meet you

Dry Cleaning on “Sweet Princess” and “Boundary Road Snacks and Drinks”

Nov 26, 2019

As South London continues to pump out angular post-punk bands with all the regularity of a vending machine, such a well-populated landscape doesn't afford much room for differentiation. It's telling then that Dry Cleaning stand out effortlessly. 


25 of the Best Elton John Songs You’ve (Probably) Never Heard

Jun 10, 2019

Rocketman is here. And it's spectacular. As such, I've got Elton on the mind.

I didn't go to the church of Jesus Christ when I was a kid. I went to the church of Elton John. Still do. We had portraits of Elton and his lyricist Bernie Taupin framed, matted, and hanging in the hallway as if they were fuckin' family members. LOL. Mom took me to my first concert in 1994. I was 11. It was Elton and Ray Cooper at the Greek Theater in LA. In 7th grade, I had a picture of Elton on the front of my school folder and one of Taupin on the back. Caught a lot of shit for it too. It was middle school, it was the mid-'90s, I was a weirdo.

So I'm a mega-fan for sure.

When people ask me where to start with Elton's catalog, here's what I tell 'em: All the studio albums from the 1970 self-titled Elton John through 1976's Blue Moves are essential. That's 10 albums people. 10 ALBUMS IN 6 YEARS. All of them essential. And no, we're not gonna get into anything after Blue Moves. Don't have time. Too controversial. But do check out 1981's The Fox and 1983's Too Low for Zero if you have the appetite.

Those 10 studio albums aren't just essential because of their brain-scramblingly good singles, but also because the non-single album tracks are Just. Un. Real. To celebrate all that incredible music and the release of Rocketman, I've compiled 25 of the very best Elton John songs I reckon you've never heard.

What'd we miss? BRING IT.

 By Kenny S McGuane

Live reviews

Viva Sounds, Gothenburg, Sweden, 6-7 December 2019

Viva Sounds, Gothenburg, Sweden, 6-7 December 2019

Dec 13, 2019 By Dom Gourlay

Under the Radar travelled to Gothenburg for the 3rd edition of Viva Sounds. Here are our highlights from the weekend

Cinema Reviews

Uncut Gems

Dec 12, 2019 Web Exclusive

Uncut Gems finds the Safdie brothers perfecting the mode of thriller they worked in on Good Time.

Television Reviews

Back to Life
(Showtime, Sundays at 10 p.m.)

Nov 08, 2019 Web Exclusive

The residents of the small town of Hythe don't believe in the concept of "paid her debt to society." This is what Miri Matteson (Daisy Haggard), the main protagonist in Back to Life finds out very quickly upon her release from an 18-year sentence in prison.