LATEST ADDITIONS

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Michael Fremer Posted: Apr 01, 2009 0 comments

Jenny Lewis can be coquettish, seductive, aggressive, sweet, warm, nostalgic, empathetic and, yes, acid tongued— though it’s a literal reference on the title tune.

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Michael Fremer Posted: Apr 01, 2009 0 comments

Is this performance of one of Dvorak’s most popular and oft-recorded piano trios likely the most authoritative or finely played? Not likely, given competition from Yo-Yo Ma, Emanuel Ax and Young Uck Kim among the many others by well- established ensembles and/or instrumentalists. This trio does play it very well, however.

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Michael Fremer Posted: Apr 01, 2009 0 comments

The long running outfit known as Mercury Rev (first album, Yerself Is Steam issued 1991 on the UK Mint Films label and 1992 on U.S. Columbia) didn’t take its name from the liquid element. The first album’s back jacket offers a clue: with or without permission, it reproduces the ‘Stereo 35MM’ logo found on cloth-spined Command Classics LPs and that’s fine with me. “Fine”&#151get it? Fine? It even reproduces the part of the logo that says the recording was on 35MM magnetic tape, but I doubt that album really was. (Hint: those Commands were recorded by the legendary Mercury Records engineer (and mastered by George Piros for that matter).

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Michael Fremer Posted: Mar 01, 2009 0 comments

Laura Nyro’s most personal, mature and intense album of love’s struggles proved to be the stopping point for many fans of the earlier gospel-y good time Nyro who sung “Stoned Soul Picnic,” “Eli’s Comin’,” “Wedding Bell Blues,” “Stoney End,” and even “And When I Die,” which was celebratory despite the song’s morbid title.

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Michael Fremer Posted: Mar 01, 2009 0 comments

Calling Ricki Lee Jones’s Pop Pop an “enduring” audiophile classic would be an understatement, though getting a copy on vinyl has been difficult until now.

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Michael Fremer Posted: Mar 01, 2009 0 comments

Listening to this previously unreleased 1971 Royal Albert Hall live performance makes clear that by this time The Byrds were little more than Roger McGuinn’s backing band, but with Clarence White on guitar, Skip Battin on bass and Gene Parsons on drums, what a good backing band!

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Michael Fremer Posted: Mar 01, 2009 0 comments

Can rock’n’roll still be dangerous in the 21st century? Escovedo’s latest says “yes” with conviction. Produced by veteran Tony Visconti (I don’t have to cite credits do I?), this is a tight, hard-hitting package of unadorned guitar-driven rock that opens with a tune that sounds like a Bruce Springsteen demo track recorded at a time when Bruce’s music and his performances raged with authenticity.

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Michael Fremer Posted: Mar 01, 2009 0 comments

Editor's note: this review has caused quite a dust-up, in part because of the sonic description and in part because of this, which you'll find further down in the text:

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Michael Fremer Posted: Mar 01, 2009 0 comments

Deerhunter opens Microcastle with a Pink Floyd-like grand musical flourish taken at midtempo lysergic trail speed. The floating, vibrating textures give way to an insistent, deliberate, Wire-like beat that the group rides for a while before switching to dream-like reverie resplendent of Eno’s ambient projects merged with moodiness the late Syd Barrett might be proud to call his own.

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