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Melissa Maerz

Reporter

  • Day & Age

    Like their hometown of Las Vegas, the Killers have a flair for anything supersize, sparkly and over-the-top: soaring synth-pop operas, multipart arena-rock anthems, "Bohemian Rhapsody"-style choirs. So it makes sense that, after 2006's massively ambitious Sam's Town, their third studio album expands their scope even further, adding subtle world-music accents to their glittery New Wave […]

    • Album Reviews
  • Russell Brand: Dirty Sexy Funny

    He's a British lunatic who got fired for dressing up as bin Laden and once smoked cracked with a prostitute on TV. No wonder America is in love

    • TV & Movies
  • Modern Guilt

    Welcome to Beck's midlife spiritual crisis. As he nears his 40th birthday, his hair has grown as long as the Maharishi's. The BFFs on his MySpace Top Eight include Aristotle, father of metaphysics. And he's never addressed a higher power as directly as he does on his 10th album. Modern Guilt finds him questioning what […]

    • Album Reviews
  • Consolers Of The Lonely

    What separates the blues greats from the legends? A good story. And Jack White knows how to tell one. (Did you hear the one about the guitarist who married his sister?) It's no coincidence that his side band is called the Raconteurs: "When you call yourself a musician," the White Stripes leader said when he […]

    • Album Reviews
  • Jukebox

    Chan Marshall is not the new Dylan, or even the old Dylan. But when she takes on Bobby Zimmerman on Jukebox, a sequel to 2000's The Covers Record, her approach is Dylanesque: She refashions material from other artists and makes it seem like it's been hers all along. Stripping "I Believe in You" (a song […]

    • Album Reviews
  • 40 Reasons We Loved Television in '07

    'The Sopranos' finale blew our mind, Stephen Colbert united us under Doritos, and 38 other reasons watching this year was so much fun

    • TV & Movies
  • Blackout

    Well, this is unfortunate. While judges debate her child-visitation rights, Britney Spears has released an album whose title seems to have been inspired by a major flirtini binge. On Blackout, she's singing that she's "so damn high I can't come down," anticipating a night of "dancing tabletop," and issuing a proclamation that's enough to make […]

    • Album Reviews
  • CMJ 2007, Night Two (All-Kid Edition): Cool Kids and Kid Sister

    You know Chicago's hip-hop scene is on the rise when a) Kanye West cameos on hometown rapper Kid Sister's "Pro Nails," and b) big, beer-chugging guys wave their cuticles in the air to its girlie chorus: "Got her toes done up with her fingernails match." Last night at Hiro Ballroom, the pint-sized diva, backed by […]

    • Music
  • The Filthiest New Show on Television: Showtime's "Californication"

    We've just watched the first episode of Californication, a brave new dark comedy premiering on Showtime in August, and we're pleased to announce that it's not only our favorite new show, it's also the dirtiest program that's ever graced our TV without requiring our credit card number first. In the opening sequence alone, one-hit-wonder novelist […]

    • (Sub)Culture