The Queue: Busted, Once Upon a Dead Man and Microwave

The Queue: Busted, Once Upon a Dead Man and Microwave

The Queue is a recurring feature in which I discuss some of the music that I’ve been listening to recently. This week I examine a couple of very different tracks featuring Charlie Simpson and Microwave's ability to turn simple structures into winning songs. "Nostalgia" – Busted Falling in love and breaking up have long been [...]

There’s Still Something Special About Listening to an Entire Album

There’s Still Something Special About Listening to an Entire Album

We live in the age of the playlist. Spotify, today's most important tastemaker for the discerning audiophile, is known not for its catalog of beloved albums or ability to accurately recommend esoteric ones but for its algorithmic generation of satisfying, customized playlists for each user. Pop stars are citing "the playlists [they] grew up with" [...]

Mystic Stuff: The Two Best Albums of 2019

Mystic Stuff: The Two Best Albums of 2019

"I hope you're doing fine on your own," sings Stefan Babcock on "See You At Your Funeral," the shockingly catchy centerpiece of Morbid Stuff, the third LP from Canadian punk rockers PUP. If that seems like a pleasant sentiment, know that, characteristically, it's not. "'Cause after everything we've been through," he continues, "you better hope [...]

List Season is Coming

List Season is Coming

The year is drawing to a close and taking the decade with it (because, for some reason, we use zero-based numbering for that kind of thing). That means that we're approaching list season, when every denizen of the internet will bombard the digital void with lists of movies, albums, books and whatever else they have [...]

On the Death of the Album Review

On the Death of the Album Review

For reasons that can best be described as “inexplicable,” my parents subscribed to both Rolling Stone and Entertainment Weekly while I was in high school. Neither periodical was a particularly good fit for my already-well-developed anti-establishmentarian artistic tastes and yet this was a time (for me, at least) before easy internet access and so, with few exceptions, I read [...]