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549 items by Jon Dolan

  • Everyday Robots

    Everyday Robots | ALBUM REVIEW

    Damon Albarn has always seemed most comfortable with some distance between himself and his music. As Blur's frontman, he played the tart-tongued wit, satirizing modern Britain from behind a wall of cheeky irony. With Gorillaz,...

    April 22, 2014 10:55 AM ET
  • Pop Psychology

    Pop Psychology | ALBUM REVIEW

    On their two hit singles – 2010's "Animal" and 2012's "Everybody Talks" – Neon Trees refashioned post-Strokes dance rock into unshakable radio pop. If the Utah band was from New York or L.A., its slick simulations...

    April 22, 2014 12:05 AM ET
  • "River Bank"

    "River Bank" | SONG REVIEW

    Paisley still has a bit of a scarlet "A" (as in "Accidental Racist") on his Stetson – but that ideological septic spill aside, he's always been one of Nashville's sharpest dudes. This laid-back ode to inner tubes...

    April 17, 2014 5:25 PM ET
  • "When the People Cheer"

    "When the People Cheer" | SONG REVIEW

    The Roots' next LP is parodically titled And Then You Shoot Your Cousin, but its first single's trap-life satire is somber as well as pointed. Over an elegiac piano and muted Questlove boombap, they go inside a...

    April 17, 2014 5:15 PM ET
  • "Lovers on the Run"

    "Lovers on the Run" | SONG REVIEW

    "There it goes, my history," Ian McCulloch observes on this offering from the first Bunnymen album in five years. Indeed, the New Wave titans proudly evoke their dolorous Eighties grace, luxuriating in a string-sloshed killing-moon ooze...

    April 17, 2014 5:10 PM ET
  • Going Back Home

    Going Back Home | ALBUM REVIEW

    Guitarist Wilko Johnson, who foreshadowed U.K. punk with Seventies pub rockers Dr. Feelgood, was diagnosed with terminal cancer last year. So he and his friend Roger Daltrey have recorded vibrant, legacyburnishing versions of 10 Johnson songs backed...

    April 17, 2014 5:05 PM ET
  • Education, Education, Education & War

    Education, Education, Education & War | ALBUM REVIEW

    This record should come with a case of Harp Lager and a picture of David Cameron to throw your empty cans at. Kaiser Chiefs' fifth album is full of frothingly pissed-off working-class British rock,...

    April 4, 2014 11:25 AM ET
  • "Fever"

    "Fever" | SONG REVIEW

    It's sleek and sinewy like Little Willie John's foundational 1956 "Fever," and it's got a strutting four-on-the-floor like the Bee Gees' "Night Fever." But the first offering from the Black Keys' Turn Blue (due out...

    April 4, 2014 11:25 AM ET
  • "Dark Sunglasses"

    "Dark Sunglasses" | SONG REVIEW

    After 35 years fronting the Pretenders, Hynde is releasing her first solo album, Stockholm, produced by Bjorn Yttling of Swedish outfit Peter, Bjorn and John. Its cutting, springy first single is about people trading...

    April 4, 2014 11:10 AM ET
  • "Draft Day"

    "Draft Day" | SONG REVIEW

    Drake's latest statement-of-Drakeness casually big-ups his sports bros Johnny Manziel and Andrew Wiggins over a dreamy sample of Lauryn Hill's "Doo Wop (That Thing)," then drops a little Jennifer Lawrence fan fic: "On some Hunger Games...

    April 4, 2014 11:05 AM ET
  • Here and Nowhere Else

    Here and Nowhere Else | ALBUM REVIEW

    Cleveland indie rocker Dylan Baldi of Cloud Nothings has been releasing records since 2009, when he was 18, spending what would have been his college years learning the ways of catchy, low-fi guitar punishment....

    April 1, 2014 12:30 AM ET
  • Teeth Dreams

    Teeth Dreams | ALBUM REVIEW

    On the Hold Steady's sixth album, frontman Craig Finn is still finding new ways to chronicle the underside of dead-end partying (see the grueling opener, "I Hope the Whole Thing Didn't Frighten You"). The...

    March 25, 2014 12:35 AM ET
  • About Last Night

    About Last Night | ALBUM REVIEW

    "I wanna shake some action," these Kentucky alt-rockers holler on their second proper record. The line quotes Sixties garage hippies the Flamin' Groovies, but the track bumps like dance pop, and 21-year-old singer Alex Kandel has some...

    March 25, 2014 12:30 AM ET
  • Singles

    Singles | ALBUM REVIEW

    Baltimore's Future Islands could be just one more band of Eighties-y synth romantics. The difference is singer Samuel T. Herring, whose intense rasp evokes Broken English-era Marianne Faithfull if she came down with a serious case...

    March 25, 2014 12:15 AM ET
  • Kiss Me Once

    Kiss Me Once | ALBUM REVIEW

    The Australian dance-pop diva recently signed a management deal with Jay Z's Roc Nation, and she's been working with crossover-friendly writers Pharrell and Sia. But if her 12th album sounds a lot like contemporary...

    March 25, 2014 12:05 AM ET
  • "Hero"

    "Hero" | SONG REVIEW

    The cross-generational collaboration – part of a Converse ad campaign – throws Clash vets Simonon and Jones together with omnidirectional beatmaker Diplo and R&B rebel Ocean. It's every bit the punky hip-hop party you'd expect,...

    March 20, 2014 1:30 PM ET
  • "Howl"

    "Howl" | SONG REVIEW

    Producer Jordy Asher (a.k.a. Boots) got the divine stamp of approval with his work on Beyoncé. The beat on this solo release – a symphony of wobbling synths, layered moans and crosscutting rhythm crack –...

    March 20, 2014 1:05 PM ET
  • Darlings

    Darlings | ALBUM REVIEW

    Kevin Drew's second solo album opens with a geyser of warm noise that seems sure to turn into one of the expansive indie-rock bliss-outs he's been sculpting for more than a decade as the leader of Toronto's...

    March 18, 2014 12:15 AM ET
  • Divergent: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

    Divergent: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack | ALBUM REVIEW

    Divergent, Hollywood's next big Hunger Games, is based on a bestselling trilogy of teen novels set in a dystopian future. The movie's soundtrack offers an image of the dystopian present, wanly blurring EDM, alt-rock and hip-hop...

    March 11, 2014 12:15 AM ET
  • G I R L

    G I R L | ALBUM REVIEW

    2013 was the year of Pharrell. Sure, he's been lacing the pop charts for more than a decade, composing beats and singing hooks for everyone from Snoop Dogg and Jay Z to Justin...

    March 7, 2014 4:20 PM ET
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