May 20, 2009 Music Web Exclusive

It’s now been four years since The Rentals quietly reformed, under the leadership of founder Matt Sharp, along with new additions of singer/songwriter Sara Radle, violist Lauren Chipman, synth player Ben Pringle, and drummer Dan Joeright. More

May 20, 2009 Music Web Exclusive

Cyndi Lauper said it best: Girls just want to have fun. Joining the pack of Swedish-imported fun is Stockholm-based, all-girl quintet, Those Dancing Days. Its name derived from the Led Zeppelin song "Dancing Days," the group of fresh-faced high school grads share more in common with fellow girl group The Pipettes or Blondie front-woman Deborah Harry than the heavy mysticism of Led Zeppelin IV. More

May 19, 2009 Music Web Exclusive

Is the Mercury Music Prize an indication that you should stop doing what people seem to approve of so much? The prestigious award, given to one British artist annually, signifies the biggest contribution to British music for that year. Gomez were the recipients of that honor in 1998 for their debut, Bring It OnMore

May 16, 2009 Music Web Exclusive

On the documentary DVD that’s packaged with this live CD, Hold Steady frontman Craig Finn comments: “This band was created in sort of the shadow of the Replacements.” Nothing wrong with that, given that The Replacements recorded an influential string of classic studio albums in the 1980s, but it makes The Hold Steady a dubious band to release a live album. More

May 15, 2009 Music Web Exclusive

Silversun Pickups are experiencing the opposite of most bands that share a similar sound. That sound being a wall of distortion, static, and fuzz that is part shoegazer—and in the Silversun's case, part Smashing Pumpkins. Usually the first album is one big, long sound occasionally punctured by a recognizable riff. In contrast, the second album is defined by morsels of hints-at-pop hits—which in the Silversuns case ended up being full-blown smashes.  More

May 15, 2009 Music Web Exclusive

In 2007, The Mary Onettes (pronounced like marionettes) released their self-titled debut full-length, featuring a sound reminiscent of bands like The Cure and The Church, whose pop melodies wrapped in lush textures and ethereal backdrops were second to none. This first single from The Mary Onettes' upcoming sophomore full-length picks up right where the band left off. More

May 15, 2009 Music Web Exclusive

British singer/songwriter Polly Scattergood feels your pain. Your pain, and the pain of every young girl clutching a notebook filled with poetry. While it's difficult to doubt the sincerity of her convictions as they drip from every note and roll off every word of her affected shrill delivery, by the end of her eponymous debut you can't help but feel thankful puberty has long since come and gone. More

May 09, 2009 Music Web Exclusive

The debut EP from these two teenage sisters from outside Stockholm, Sweden, is steeped largely in the folk traditions of artists such as Vashti Bunyan and Nick Drake. More

May 09, 2009 Music Web Exclusive

First appearing in 1968, Astral Weeks has become one of the most critically acclaimed records of all time. With Morrison’s indelible vocals, adventurous arrangements, and evocative lyrics, the album manages to encompass pop, rock, jazz, folk, blues, and even classical categorizations without being merely a pastiche of them all. To celebrate its 40th anniversary, Morrison and Co. performed the record in its entirety. More