Reviews | Under the Radar - Music Magazine
Saturday, May 30th, 2020  

Oct 14, 2009 Live Web Exclusive

For Mayer Hawthorne, it's all about love—lots and lots of love. And at the swanky Brooklyn Bowl in Williamsburg on October 3 (part of his aptly named Lonely Hearts Club Tour), the DJ/multi-instrumentalist-turned-soul singer wanted to make sure everyone was getting some. A few songs into his set, he asked, "Brooklyn, are you feeling the love tonight?" Unsatisfied with the lukewarm response, he retorted, "We're gonna come back to that." More

Oct 13, 2009 Live Web Exclusive

With the French rock outfit Phoenix and the Boston-based synth-pop quintet Passion Pit on the same bill, it would never take long to start a dance party. On September 26, at the second of two sold-out New York shows, it wasn't long before Central Park's Rumsey Playfield became a mess of strobe lights, synthesizers, and screaming teenagers. More

Oct 10, 2009 Live Web Exclusive

Tie-wearing, cow-lick sporting musician Loney Dear (Emil Svanängen to his friends) is the kind of performer you can’t help but want to succeed. Taking the stage after Asobi Seksu’s high-spirited sonic assault that left the audience bouncing, one couldn’t help but wonder if the sweet-spirited Swede—who repeatedly and sincerely addressed the audience as “my friends”—was up for the task. Flaunting his crystalline voice and liberal use of crescendos in a set that could melt even a cynic’s heart, Svanängen proved that he was. 

Oct 07, 2009 Live Web Exclusive

Since Yo La Tengo is forgoing its usual winter run of eight Hanukkah shows in the band's hometown of Hoboken, N.J., an extra-special close-to-home gig was inevitable while touring for its newest release, Popular Songs (Matador). At New York's Roseland Ballroom on September 25, the Susquehanna Industrial Tool & Die Co. played a pre-show set in the lobby, the rowdy dudes of Atlanta's Black Lips opened in the theater, comedian John Oliver emceed, and concertgoers were treated to a light show by Joshua White and Gary Panter during Yo La Tengo's set. More

Oct 06, 2009 Live Web Exclusive

On "I'm A Pilot," the opening track from Fanfarlo's glorious debut LP Reservoir (Atlantic), frontman Simon Balthazar croons, "If I stay in this room, they'll remember me for my youth." The waltz as a whole is about the famed aviator Howard Hughes, who slowly went insane and shut himself in a film-screening room for four months, then disappeared from the public eye. But taken slightly out of context, "I'm A Pilot" very much defines the London-based orchestral pop outfit, who graciously and effortlessly charmed the crowd at a packed Bowery Ballroom on Sept. 21. More

Sep 22, 2009 Live

Kurt Cobain once remarked caustically that he would only wear a tie-dyed t-shirt if it were made with "the urine of Phil Collins and the blood of Jerry Garcia." Perhaps he was rolling over in his grave when Sufjan Stevens and his band opened the main stage of ATP day 2 decked out in oversized tie-dyes. Delivering a set comprised of 2004's Seven Swans from start to finish, Stevens announced that, "this is a set for your hangovers." More

Sep 18, 2009 Live

“My dying breath will be spent complaining about the brevity of a band’s set.”  I’ve said this so many times, that trotting out this complaint yet again may simply come off as white noise. But seriously Chairlift—let’s talk about your show at the Troubadour. Eight songs and no encore? You’re so much better than that! And I ‘aint too proud to beg. More

Sep 17, 2009 Live

“We’re super guys,” said Modest Mouse lead singer Isaac Brock. “…All I’m saying is, while you were here wasting your time, we lowered gas prices to five cents a gallon for 20 minutes…but you were here.” After a Close Encounters of the Third Kind introduction—complete with flashing lights—and riotous opener “Invisible,” I was ready to believe just about anything. Anything. More

Sep 10, 2009 Live Web Exclusive

It’s a damp, humid Sunday evening and tucked away in a cobbled lane at the heart of Glasgow’s city centre, Stereo is the venue for the only Scottish date on Bill Callahan’s European tour. He’s promoting his latest release, Sometimes I Wish We Were An Eagle, his second without his famous sobriquet. More