591 items by Will Hermes Will Hermes’ Profile on

  • "Helplessness Blues"

    "Helplessness Blues" | SONG REVIEW

    The first fruit (and title track) from Helplessness Blues, the Seattle folk-rockers' upcoming second album, this begins with frontman Robin Pecknold sounding like a troubled Joni Mitchell and ends with him sounding like a utopian Graham...

    February 9, 2011 12:47 PM ET
  • Degeneration Street

    Degeneration Street | ALBUM REVIEW

    Click to Listen to The Dears' Degeneration Street Dears leader Murray Lightburn has a dramatic streak wide as his Canadian homeland, and his group's fifth...

    February 8, 2011 12:25 AM ET
  • Mission Bell

    Mission Bell | ALBUM REVIEW

    Amos Lee is a 32-year-old soul man with a voice that blends James Taylor and Bill Withers. Lee's singing is both seductive and a little anonymous, his persona often dissolving into a tasteful mix of predictable lyrics...

    February 7, 2011 5:37 PM ET
  • "Atiba Song"

    "Atiba Song" | SONG REVIEW

    This droning cut by the Animal Collective singer sets multitracked voices over silvery guitar and galloping drums. The result? Hypnotic mood music that feels like it could go on forever. Listen to "Atiba Song":

    February 7, 2011 9:15 AM ET
  • "Roman's Revenge"

    "Roman's Revenge" | SONG REVIEW

    Weezy leaps on the craziest track from his protégé's Pink Friday LP, an alter-ego spaz-out set over little more than bowed bass and skeletal percussion. Supplanting Eminem's bilious verses on the original version, Wayne sounds breathless,...

    February 3, 2011 9:15 AM ET
  • "Secret Love"

    "Secret Love" | SONG REVIEW

    La Gold Dust Woman's first new music in a decade is a glimpse of In Your Dreams, a collaboration with Eurythmics' synth-pop scientist Dave Stewart. (It's due in May.) "Come on, it's time to go upstairs"...

    January 18, 2011 9:15 AM ET
  • The King Is Dead

    The King Is Dead | ALBUM REVIEW

    Click to listen to The Decemberists' "Down By the Water" When a 12-and-a-half-minute murder ballad ("The Island," from 2006's The Crane Wife) stands as one of your...

    January 18, 2011 12:00 AM ET
  • Cape Dory

    Cape Dory | ALBUM REVIEW

    Click to listen to Tennis' "Marathon" and "Take Me Somewhere" Great backstory: Denver husband-and-wife team Alaina Moore and Patrick Riley sail around the East Coast...

    January 18, 2011 12:00 AM ET
  • "Row Jimmy"

    "Row Jimmy" | SONG REVIEW

    The bookish Portlanders cut a loose cover of the Grateful Dead's two-step, with Colin Meloy doing a spirited Jerry. It's like closing time at the library's special-collections room. Gallery: Random Notes, Rock's Hottest Photos

    January 3, 2011 9:15 AM ET
  • Will Hermes' Best of 2010

    Will Hermes' Best of 2010 | ARTICLE

    Albums 1. Junip, Fields (Mute)In a year that demanded serious chilling-out, Jose Gonzales made a gorgeous chill-out record, all gentle melodies and hypnotizing grooves. Yet — as with most things — below the...

    December 27, 2010 11:15 AM ET
  • Ten Essential Captain Beefheart Songs

    Ten Essential Captain Beefheart Songs | ARTICLE

    When the man born Don Van Vliet died on December 17, he left behind a body of highly original rock and roll that mixed free-jazz with the blues and influenced everyone from PJ Harvey to the...

    December 20, 2010 11:15 AM ET
  • III/IV


    Around 2006, prolific, hard-drugging singer-songwriter Ryan Adams cleaned up and began spitting out even more music. III/IV is 21 songs from 2007's Easy Tiger sessions, supplanting that album's wired folk rock with a blend of punk head...

    December 14, 2010 11:25 AM ET
  • "Getting Ready for Christmas Day"

    "Getting Ready for Christmas Day" | SONG REVIEW

    "Got a nephew in Iraq/It's his third time back," sings Paul Simon, pondering the fate of a relative spending Christmas abroad. "Jingle Bells" this ain't. The first taste of his forthcoming LP is built around a 1941...

    December 13, 2010 5:55 PM ET
  • "Last Night at the Jetty"

    "Last Night at the Jetty" | SONG REVIEW

    The Animal Collective crooner evokes the sound of a woozy man stringing together bits of doo-wop at the bottom of a well, backed by wobbly synth, hand claps and the odd shriek. We'll have what he's having!

    December 10, 2010 9:45 AM ET
  • 4x4=12

    4x4=12 | ALBUM REVIEW

    Rocking stages in his trademark LED mouse helmet, Joel Zimmerman recalls the salad days of Daft Punk, when cartoon robots ruled clubland. 4x4=12 is audacious, mixing generic house grooves with eclectic fare like "Bad Selection," a...

    December 7, 2010 12:45 AM ET
  • "Hold My Hand"

    "Hold My Hand" | SONG REVIEW

    When it first appeared, there was some doubt that this 2007 "collaboration" — circulated in a rough but near-identical version after Michael Jackson's death — really happened. (Members of Jackson's family are among the skeptics.) Musically, the...

    December 1, 2010 6:50 AM ET
  • "P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing)"

    "P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing)" | SONG REVIEW

    This version of the Thriller killer, cut by its producer for his new album, finds T-Pain splashing on the Auto-Tune like cheap cologne while Thicke channels Michael more straightforwardly. This at least beats Justin Guarini’s version from...

    November 29, 2010 8:50 AM ET
  • West Coast Seattle Boy - The Jimi Hendrix Anthology Experience

    West Coast Seattle Boy - The Jimi Hendrix Anthology Experience | ALBUM REVIEW

    For Jimi Hendrix fanatics, the selling point of this four-disc set is a full CD of songs on which the guitarist doesn't sing lead and barely solos. Instead, he plays sideman to Little Richard, Don...

    November 25, 2010 9:25 PM ET
  • Pretty Hate Machine (Reissue)

    Pretty Hate Machine (Reissue) | ALBUM REVIEW

    "Head like a hole/Black as your soul," bellows Trent Reznor on his debut, the first industrial singer-songwriter album. The sound of a studio janitor shouting down his enemies and baring his diseased soul over...

    November 22, 2010 12:25 AM ET
  • Cannibal

    Cannibal | ALBUM REVIEW

    Ke$ha's main competitor rocks a mean meat dress, but can she rock a couplet like "Your little heart goes pitter-patter/I want your liver on a platter"? This EP proves Ke$ha would kick Gaga's ass in...

    November 22, 2010 12:15 AM ET