03.15.2010 "Plastic Ono Band," John Lennon. Lennon's first album after the Beatles broke up. Raw, stripped-down, a stellar work of art from start to finish.
03.17.2010 "War Elephant," Deer Tick. Old soul John J. McCauley III was a mere 19 when he wrote the bulk of these songs. And he sounds like he's 49. Amazing lyrics. They co-headlined last year's SXSW.
03.18.2010 "Fruit," Asteroids Galaxy Tour. Check out my review here: http://bit.ly/n3FMny
07.21.2010 "Big," Macy Gray. For anyone seeking another Macy Gray album on par with "On How Life Is," look no further. Though not as instantly catchy, with repeated listenings it's simply euphoric. "Big" showcases Macy's highly under-appreciated wordsmithery, her peerless phrasing and that otherworldly helium voice—the most engaging and expressive female voice I've heard since Nina Simone.
02.18.2011 “Return to the Sea,” Islands. Following the brilliant, short, happy life of Montreal indie rock band The Unicorns and their gem, “Who Will Cut Our Hair When We’re Gone?” frontman Nick Diamonds and drummer J’aime Tambeur emerged from the ashes to form Islands—and one of the more compellingly quirky, epic, sprawling and distinctive albums known to man.
09.15.2011 "Fuzzy" and "Mighty Joe Moon," Grant Lee Buffalo. Part Wilco, part Eddie Vedder, part Elliott Smith. And yet, completely original. Why more people haven’t heard Grant Lee Buffalo is a crime against good taste. Two of the best albums of the ‘90s right here, masterfully written, voiced and shredded by Grant-Lee Phillips.
12.7.2011 "Mr. Wizard," R.L. Burnside. If this old school, north Mississippi juke joint bluesman doesn't (at the very least) get your head a-bobbin' or toe a-tappin', then you're fucked—because you have no soul. That's a fact. Burnside, a toothless, badass septuagenarian who's now passed away, shreds Mississippi Delta blues—right when it turned electric. Saw him in concert back in 2001, and it was easily one of the top 3 shows I've ever had the privilege to attend.