Reviews | Under the Radar - Music Magazine

Feb 28, 2014 Music Issue #49 - February/March 2014 - Portlandia

Bombay Bicycle Club have called their new album So Long, See You Tomorrow, but it could just as easily have been named Bombay Bicycle Club: Fun With Synthesizers. Never a band to shy away from experimentation, for their fourth full-length release the North London band have injected their glittering guitar pop with textural synths and dance sounds. More

Feb 27, 2014 Music Issue #49 - February/March 2014 - Portlandia

British art rockers Wild Beasts may hail from the wilds of Cumbria in the far north of England, but their music has always defied their craggy-landscaped origin and ferocious name: their 2009 breakthrough albumTwo Dancers and it's 2011 follow-up Smother were sinuously sophisticated and low-keybarbed tales of sexual longing and self-loathing wrapped in sleek, atmospheric indie rock. More

Feb 26, 2014 Music Issue #49 - February/March 2014 - Portlandia

The career trajectory of German polymaths The Notwist has always been one of steady evolution and mutation. We've long waved auf wiedersehen to the early '90s punk stylings of The Notwist and Nook, and now it seems the sentimental bedroom electronica of Shrink and Neon Golden is headed the same way. More

Feb 25, 2014 Music Issue #49 - February/March 2014 - Portlandia

Attempt to connect the dots between Beck releases and you'll rarely find moments where the artist has circled back on himself. Unfettered by genre or by audience expectations, his drowsy baritone and free-associative lyrics are the only things which remain consistent from album to album. More

Neneh Cherry

Blank Project

Smalltown Supersound

Feb 24, 2014 Music Issue #49 - February/March 2014 - Portlandia

Not one to be rushedit's almost a quarter of a century since the release of her debut Raw Like Sushi and 16 years since her last solo releaseBlank Project marks the long overdue return of Neneh Cherry. More

Feb 21, 2014 Music Web Exclusive

Last fall, Annie Clark emerged from 18 long months on the roadwhich included the Strange Mercy tour and her Love This Giant gigs with David Byrneready to work. Rather than take the standard time off to recover and recalibrate, Clark dove right into songwriting again, expelling the last year and a half's worth of ideas into these 11 new tracks. The simply-titled St. Vincent arrived far earlier than anyone would have expected from such a busy artist, but it doesn't feel rushed; rather, it's the product of a musician on an inspired streak. More

Actress

Ghettoville

Werkdiscs

Feb 20, 2014 Music Web Exclusive

While many artists tend to spend their careers beefing up their sound, Darren Cunningham takes the opposite approach. As Actress, the London-based producer's music-if you can even call it that-is an exquisite lesson in sonic deconstructionism, a gnarl of electronic dis-effects that rub raw against the eardrums like a saw-toothed pumice stone. More

Phantogram

Voices

Republic

Feb 19, 2014 Music Web Exclusive

Voices is Phantogram's full-length follow up to 2009's Eyelid Movies (EPs have been released in the interim), and the Saratoga Springs duo stays true to its layered, beat-driven, ambient method. This time around, however, the songs are tighter, and with their signature multi-tracking and moody approach, the album benefits enormously from the added structure. More

Feb 18, 2014 Music Web Exclusive

Lost in the Trees' last album, A Church That Fits Our Needs, was a somber and lush reflection on singer/songwriter Ari Picker's mother's death. It carved out an expansive space to explore emotions and depth, and they filled that space beautifully. It's kind of a hard album to followso rich in substance and personal meaning. With Past Life, Picker's response was apparently to peel back the musical layers and see what remains. More