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386 items by Jody Rosen

  • Country, God or the Girl

    Country, God or the Girl | ALBUM REVIEW

    The titular girl gets her moment on the latest album by K'Naan in the punchy pop-rap single "Hurt Me Tomorrow." But country and God interest the Somali-Canadian rapper-singer more. Bono appears on "Bulletproof Pride." But K'Naan is...

    November 9, 2012 10:30 AM ET
  • The Heist

    The Heist | ALBUM REVIEW

    The Heist is one of the year's big sleeper hits: an indie hip-hop album from a Seattle rapper, Macklemore, and beatmaker, Ryan Lewis, that debuted at Number Two on the Billboard 200. The record has its...

    November 9, 2012 10:15 AM ET
  • Jody Rosen: My 2012 Playlist

    Jody Rosen: My 2012 Playlist | ARTICLE

    Hear songs from Justin Bieber, Alan Jackson, Kitty Pryde and more:

    November 1, 2012 3:00 PM ET
  • Sorry To Bother You

    Sorry To Bother You | ALBUM REVIEW

    You will not hear a finer accordion solo on a rap record this year than the one in the Coup's "We've Got a Lot to Teach You, Cassius Green." The song also has 2012's most furious...

    October 30, 2012 12:00 AM ET
  • The Man With the Iron Fists: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

    The Man With the Iron Fists: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack | ALBUM REVIEW

    The martial-arts epic The Man With the Iron Fists is the RZA's directorial debut – although, figuratively speaking, the beat wizard has been making kung-fu movies for as long as the Wu-Tang Clan existed. The...

    October 23, 2012 12:00 AM ET
  • good kid, m.A.A.d city

    good kid, m.A.A.d city | ALBUM REVIEW

    The title "Next Big Rapper" has been a curse as often as a blessing. But on the major-label debut by Dr. Dre protégé Kendrick Lamar, the Compton, California, MC wears it lightly, like a favorite...

    October 22, 2012 12:20 PM ET
  • Band to Watch: Kendrick Lamar

    Band to Watch: Kendrick Lamar | VIDEO

    Hometown: Compton, California Backstory: Lamar, a member of the Black Hippy crew (with fellow L.A. luminaries Schoolboy Q and Ab-Soul), caught the attention of Snoop Dogg and Dr. Dre with his 2011 debut; Dre helped produce good...

    October 22, 2012 7:40 AM ET
  • Livin' for a Song: A Tribute to Hank Cochran

    Livin' for a Song: A Tribute to Hank Cochran | ALBUM REVIEW

    Hank Cochran, who died at age 74 in 2010, wrote country ballads so perfectly shaped and cadenced you hardly believe they were written at all. Jamey Johnson's tribute record enlists an amazing intergenerational all-star team (Willie...

    October 16, 2012 12:10 AM ET
  • Live From Harlem

    Live From Harlem | ALBUM REVIEW

    Tim Vocals, an R&B singer from Harlem, has emerged as an internet sensation with a novel shtick: crooning gritty, profane tales of thug life and drug-peddling in a lilting, feather-light soul man’s tenor. His debut mixtape collects...

    October 12, 2012 4:00 PM ET
  • "Locked Out of Heaven"

    "Locked Out of Heaven" | SONG REVIEW

    Bruno Mars is one of pop's courtliest young stars – a gentleman through and through, from his chivalric oaths ("I'd catch a grenade for ya") to the rakish Sinatra-style tilt of his fedora. But Mars' new single...

    October 10, 2012 10:30 AM ET
  • "Skyfall"

    "Skyfall" | SONG REVIEW

    Adele has been compared to everyone from Aretha Franklin to Etta James, but her real spiritual forbear may be Shirley Bassey, the brassy, leather-lunged, slightly schlocky Welsh songstress best known for belting out three James...

    October 9, 2012 10:10 AM ET
  • Bad: 25th Anniversary Deluxe Edition

    Bad: 25th Anniversary Deluxe Edition | ALBUM REVIEW

    Twenty-five years on, Bad sounds less like Thriller's underachieving follow-up than a masterpiece of pure pop. The deep cuts rule, from the clamorous electro-soul of "Speed Demon" to the harrowing "Leave Me Alone," whose thump can't...

    October 5, 2012 10:20 AM ET
  • Transcendental Youth

    Transcendental Youth | ALBUM REVIEW

    An album full of characters struggling against dead-end jobs, drug addiction and depression doesn't exactly sound inviting, but in the hands of John Darnielle, it's magic. Darnielle is a former psychiatric nurse; his catchy, gracefully appointed chamber-pop...

    October 5, 2012 10:10 AM ET
  • Theatre is Evil

    Theatre is Evil | ALBUM REVIEW

    Ex-Dresden Dolls star Amanda Palmer made news this year when she raised $1.2 million on Kickstarter, but her third solo album dispels all thoughts of revenue streams. You could call it retro: the synths, tensile guitar...

    October 4, 2012 10:55 AM ET
  • "Merry Go Round"

    "Merry Go Round" | SONG REVIEW

    Kacey Musgraves looks like a perfect country music ingenue – until you notice her nose-ring and the punky peroxide streak in her chestnut hair. The 24-year-old Texan's debut single is similar. It comes on gently – a...

    October 2, 2012 1:40 PM ET
  • Glad All Over

    Glad All Over | ALBUM REVIEW

    "Eyes on the prize/Reboot the mission," goes the first Wallflowers single in seven years. Reboot – not reinvent. Jakob Dylan's group has picked up where it left off: with sharp roots-rock songs full of sturdy hooks, deadpan...

    October 2, 2012 12:20 AM ET
  • Sugaring Season

    Sugaring Season | ALBUM REVIEW

    "Call me the fire/Call me the air," sings Beth Orton on her fifth LP. There is something elemental about Orton's folk soul; at its best, it sounds like the world's prettiest campfire music, all hickory smoke swirling...

    October 2, 2012 12:10 AM ET
  • "Triple Threat"

    "Triple Threat" | SONG REVIEW

    The duo responsible for this century's most wacked-out and visionary party music is back with two songs from Elliott's upcoming first album in seven years – but the mood is not quite celebratory. Timbaland's beats (his...

    September 25, 2012 4:45 PM ET
  • "9th Inning"

    "9th Inning" | SONG REVIEW

    The duo responsible for this century's most wacked-out and visionary party music is back with two songs from Elliott's upcoming first album in seven years – but the mood is not quite celebratory. Timbaland's beats (his...

    September 25, 2012 4:35 PM ET
  • "Your Body"

    "Your Body" | SONG REVIEW

    You can measure a singer's place in the pop-star pecking order by the quality of the Max Martin/Shellback song she releases. For Xtina, the news ain't good. "Your Body" is a sluggish and nearly hookless hookup...

    September 25, 2012 4:20 PM ET
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