Album Review

Untethered Moon

April 28, 2015

Built to Spill are the AC/DC of indie rock: Their catalog is full of one melancholy LP, jam-packed with guitar pyrotechnics, after another. But frontman and six-string virtuoso Doug Martsch knows how to vary the formula just enough to keep things interesting....



Built to Spill Cover 'Jokerman' for Dylan Tribute

January 22, 2014

One of the creators of the upcoming tribute album Bob Dylan in the 80s: Volume One calls the songwriter's output in the decade "off-rhythm." Not that Dylan didn't make some great music in that time: it was just his quirkiest, least commercially successful...



J Mascis Says He Nearly Joined Nirvana Twice

October 4, 2012

In a recent interview with Spin, Dinosaur Jr. frontman and shred wizard J Mascis confirmed long-circulating rumors that Kurt Cobain had asked him to join Nirvana. In fact, Mascis said, it happened twice.  The first instance occurred during a conversation...


Beck, Fiona Apple Deliver Old Hits at Governor's Ball

June 25, 2012

If Beck were not a solo artist, his recent shows, including his Sunday night headlining set at Governor's Ball in New York, might be considered something of a reunion tour. He's back with the same core group of musicians he played with back in the prime...



Built to Spill Gear Up for Next Record

November 2, 2011

Alt-rockers Built to Spill have expanded their fan base with each successive album. Their most recent, 2009's There Is No Enemy, was the band's highest-charting release yet, peaking at Number 50 on the Billboard 200. With any luck, their next studio set...


Album Review

You In Reverse

April 6, 2010

You in Reverse finds idaho's Built to Spill in a familiar groove: Recorded after the band spent months woodshedding in leader/guitar guy Doug Martsch's garage, the album is a dog-eared collection of front-porch melodies and buzzy guitar jams, with Neil...


Album Review

There Is No Enemy

September 29, 2009

Built to Spill CEO Doug Martsch is alt-rock's Thomas Pynchon, holed up in a remote studio (Boise, Idaho) and issuing immaculate artworks when he damnwell pleases. His latest is classic latter-day BTS, a crystal palace ofrefracting guitar tones and textures,...



All Tomorrow's Parties: My Bloody Valentine Rock the Catskills

September 20, 2008

Right now, indie rock fans are milling about Kutsher's Country Club in Monticello, New York at All Tomorrow's Parties New York, a three-day event with load of loud, arty (and several very good) guitar bands that culminates in a set by My Bloody Valentine,...



Albert Hammond Jr: 'I'm Down With Built To Spill'

November 2, 2006

Whenever Built to Spill play in town. I'm there. Doug Martseh's layered guitars inspire me tremendously the song "Everyone Gets a Star," on my new album [Yours to Keep], was me mimicking what I love about them. On You in Reverse, their new album, "Goin'...


Album Review


April 28, 2004

Recorded during Built to Spill's 1999 U.S. tour, Live captures this inventive Boise, Idaho, trio in full creative bloom, mixing Spartan rock structures with marathons of searching guitar solos and exploratory jams. Some songs are given a new tone: "The...


Album Review

Keep It Like A Secret

January 26, 2003

As a songwriter and guitarist, Built to Spill's Doug Martsch has "a firm background in remembering," as he sings in "Bad Light," on the band's beguiling new album, Keep It Like a Secret. Martsch's zigging, zagging vocal melodies and explosive, loud-soft-loud...


Album Review

Ancient Melodies Of The Future

July 24, 2001

Despite their indie-punk roots, Built to Spill are your basic cornfed American power trio, representing Idaho with a host of tricks learned from classic-rock radio. Indeed, their finest song ever, "You Were Right," on 1999's Keep It Like a Secret, was...


Album Review

Perfect From Now On

November 9, 1998

Did progressive rock get a bad rap from the post-punk generation? Lately, everyone from instrumental outfits such as Tortoise to four-track whiz kids such as Olivia Tremor Control has been reinvestigating the world of the epic song suite and the mind-twisting...