Oct 10, 2012 Music Web Exclusive

The New Pornographers’ frontman Carl Newman wrote Shut Down the Streets after his mother’s death and before his son’s birth, and as open and airy as these songs sound, they are also anchored by weighty lyrics about indecision and ambiguity. In other words, the album’s cover, featuring Newman standing in a spacious glade surrounded by fallen trees, is perfect. More

Oct 10, 2012 Music Web Exclusive

New York’s Chrome Canyon is wise to stay away from straight-up pastiche; Elemental Themes borrows sounds and ideas from the sci-fi soundtracks of yesteryear but gives them an organic heart. More

Ultraista

Ultraísta

Temporary Residence

Oct 09, 2012 Music Web Exclusive

Ultraísta could so easily have been yet another post-dubstep decent-but-disposable record. Instead the trio have managed to create something that genuinely impresses and surprises. More

ERAAS

ERAAS

Felte

Oct 09, 2012 Music Web Exclusive

From the ashes of post-rock aesthetes Apse comes ERAAS. With frontman Robert Toher and co-songwriter Austin Stawiarz remaining, the act assumes a more silvery, esoteric, and minimalist shape, as ethereal vocals recalling The Knife slither around sinewy bass groves and stray glass synth shards. More

Oct 08, 2012 Music Web Exclusive

Mountain Goats frontman John Darnielle has a new baby, but that hasn’t softened his love for dark subject matter. (“Please,” he wrote on his website in July. “May the baby grow up to spit in my face if I should pose that hard.”) Transcendental Youth, despite its frequent use of a punchy horn section, is bleak, even by Darnielle’s standards. It’s also one of the band’s best. More

Oct 05, 2012 Music Web Exclusive

Warning: Listeners are encouraged to first experience Lonerism with 2010’s Innerspeaker stricken from the mind. Only after 10 listens may the two albums be soberly compared. More

Mumford & Sons

Babel

Glassnote

Oct 04, 2012 Music Web Exclusive

With Babel, Mumford & Sons has proven that it can do it again, replicating all that made Sigh No More so successful and well loved. It’s certainly not a departure from the band’s debut, but rather a continuation. More

Maserati

Maserati VII

Temporary Residence

Oct 04, 2012 Music Web Exclusive

An instrumental rock band is free from the verses and chorsues of vocal music, and therefore has a pass to follow its collective nose. Maserati chooses to maintain structure, developing a theme and finding a logical conclusion. More

WHY?

Mumps, etc.

Anticon

Oct 03, 2012 Music Issue #42 - The Protest Issue

Thanks to a bunch of swanky production-value-boosting additions-a string quartet, a choir, a horn section-Mumps, etc. sounds like a much bigger-budget album than its humble predecessors. Producer Graham Marsh (Cee-Lo Green, Katy Perry) gives WHY? an upbeat, pop vibe that's different than any of the band's previous work. Boiled down, Mumps, etc. is pretty slick.  More