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  • Article

    Bruised Cruise - That sinking feeling

    After last year's Rock N The Seas cruise from Los Angeles to Ensenada, which featured a shitload of booze consumption and music from a grip of Arizona bands like the Gin Blossoms, Dead Hot Workshop, Sand Rubies, Rich Hopkins, and Ghetto Cowgirl, I wa...

    by Brendan Joel Kelley on March 8, 2007
  • Article

    To The Death - My Chemical Romance conceptualizes doom with Liza Minnelli

    The Black Parade had all the makings of a total drag. A concept album devoted to death? Yeah, those are always fun. But New Jersey rock darlings My Chemical Romance stared death in the face and decided to send out for Liza Minnelli, who sound...

    by Ed Masley on March 8, 2007
  • Article

    Real Swingers - No harm, no foul

    It's the bee's knees, daddy-o. I love to swing, but I can't dance. I can't swing dance, either. But here I am at a VFW hall on Thomas Road in central Phoenix on a Sunday evening, taking a swing dance lesson and getting ready for some move called "...

    by Niki D'Andrea on March 8, 2007
  • Article

    Detour From Drinking - Taking in culture instead of tequila

    A Club Candids without drinking? What could possibly make us want to go out besides the sweet promise of bars filled with bountiful booze? The biggest downtown arts event of the year, that's what. This week, we decided to keep our livers clean and ta...

    by Lilia Menconi on March 8, 2007
  • Article

    Sister Act - Her and her against the world

    Meg & Dia, a four-piece power-pop outfit out of Utah, is bulwarked by a strong confessional singer-songwriter sensibility and fronted by sisters Meg (21, guitars and lyrics) and Dia (19, vocals) Frampton. In shorthand: They're everything Ashlee Simps...

    by Cole Haddon on March 8, 2007
  • Article

    Richard Thompson - Strumming in the wind

    Call him a poor man's Dylan, or a wise man's Clapton. Richard Thompson is perhaps the most underrated performer of his generation. For 40 years, first with Fairport Convention, then with ex-wife Linda Peters, and finally solo, Thompson has continued ...

    by Chris Parker on March 8, 2007
  • Article

    The Atomic Fireballs - Torch This Place (Lava/Atlantic)

    This Detroit band found some success in the swing revival of the late '90s, even though they were really an eight-piece jump blues band. They had the horn blasts and boogie beats to steal Cherry Poppin' Daddies fans, and the good sense to make their ...

    by Niki D'Andrea on March 8, 2007
  • Article

    Son Volt - The Search (Red Int/Red Ink)

    The Search may be the perfect title for the latest album from Uncle Tupelo offshoot Son Volt, conveying the yearning, seeking quality that underlies the album's indie rock-flavored mix and lyrical bent. In fact, it is long past time to bury the "alt-...

    by Tracy M. Rogers on March 8, 2007
  • Article

    Eric Clapton - He don't want to fade away

    Eric Clapton may have aged a bit too gracefully for many fans of his incendiary work with Cream, abandoning that youthful urgency in favor of a gentlemanly school of easy listening. And Back Home, his latest effort, clearly plays to Clapton's older, ...

    by Ed Masley on March 8, 2007
  • Article

    Green Pitch - Ace of Hearts (Funzalo Records)

    At its best, Ace of Hearts, the U.S. debut from Danish quintet Green Pitch, lilts, floats, and haunts like the best work of Mazzy Star; at its worst, Ace is ponderous, awkward, and inscrutable. Dream pop is undoubtedly the band's genre of choice, but...

    by Tracy M. Rogers on March 8, 2007
  • Article

    Blood Sweat & Tears - Who's on?

    Most critics gave up on these horndogs back in '68, when they had the temerity to boot out founder Al Kooper to get someone who could really shhhaaaang! The counterculture gave up on 'em completely when they went on a 1970 State Department-sponsored ...

    by Serene Dominic on March 8, 2007
  • Article

    Relient K - Five Score and Seven Years Ago (Capitol)

    Where its higher-profile tour mates and pop-punk counterparts Simple Plan and Good Charlotte have coupled their massive record sales with face time in the spotlight, Ohio's Relient K has taken a subtler route to the top, remaining virtually faceless ...

    by Aaron Burgess on March 8, 2007
  • Article

    The Lucky Bitches - Spinning the fun

    Catherine Vericolli and Ryan Champagne might've dubbed themselves The Lucky Bitches, but the truth is that they're quite the pleasant pair. Consider them to be goofballs to the third degree, as they named their DJ duo after a French & Saunders skit ...

    by Benjamin Leatherman on March 8, 2007
  • Article

    Shades of Gray - Hipstory-hopstory-history

    In the 30 years since its inception, hip-hop has grown from a means of expression for oppressed black youth to a major force in American popular culture. As such, hip-hop has been appropriated by all segments of our society most controversially, by...

    by Tracy M. Rogers on March 1, 2007
  • Article

    Queer Eye - Miffing accomplished

    For nearly 20 years, the Queers have made a crude pop art of thrashing through their most infectious songs with the reckless abandon of a hardcore band a really funny hardcore band that worships the Ramones and The Beach Boys. They actually cover t...

    by Ed Masley on March 1, 2007
  • Article

    Party Like a Rock Star - Shaking asses and eardrums at The Rogue

    After hitting up a couple empty clubs this past Saturday night, we finally gave in and headed to The Rogue in Scottsdale for Shake!'s two-year anniversary. Leave it to William Fucking Reed to steal the crowds, because on Saturday, February 24, the pl...

    by Lilia Menconi on March 1, 2007
  • Article

    Poppy Hybrids - Annuals sound stems from Brian Wilson, Brad Paisley, and "big-ass dogs"

    "I thought it was garbage," says guitarist Kenny Florence, recalling the first time singer/songwriter Adam Baker let him hear the new songs he'd been writing as Annuals. "The first few songs, I really didn't like. And he'll admit to you that they'...

    by Ed Masley on March 1, 2007
  • Article

    Kittie - Funeral for Yesterday (X of Infamy)

    As much as Kittie benefited from the late-'90s n-metal explosion, they were always one smart step removed from it: From the scrappy, Hole-via-Cannibal Corpse death-grunge of 1999's Spit, to the Pantera-style bludgeoning of 2001's Oracle, to the fine...

    by Aaron Burgess on March 1, 2007
  • Article

    Moneen - Six stars out of five

    Alternative Press included Moneen's latest effort, The Red Tree, on its "10 Essential Albums of 2006" list, and went on to say that if you'd give your favorite record of the year five stars, The Red Tree would get six. Now, chances are, you're thinki...

    by Ed Masley on March 1, 2007
  • Article

    Arcade Fire - Neon Bible (Merge)

    Arcade Fire's Neon Bible is a dense, academic, and ultimately rewarding album fixated on questions of spirituality, religion and the concept of self and, more specifically, how to reconcile these things in a bleak world where uncertainty is the nor...

    by Annie Zaleski on March 1, 2007
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