Review: Yeasayer – Amen & Goodbye

  There are some bands out there that elicit a uniform response of “this is good, but all their albums sound the same.” Yeasayer is not one of those bands. Their 2007 debut All Hour Cymbals combined psychedelic sounds, assorted chanting, and Middle Eastern musical influences to make one of the more unique releases in…

Review: The Joy Formidable – Hitch

  As indie rock has grown to incorporate elements of electronica and pop, it seems like it has done so at the expense of gimmick-free guitar-based rock groups. A band that only has bass, drums and guitar that does not try to incorporate any particular genre or subgenre into its sound really has to make…

Review: Miike Snow – iii

Miike Snow occupy an interesting space in electronic music. For many, electronic music has become synonymous with dance music to the point that genres like techno, house, and dubsteb are all under the umbrella genre “electronic dance music” better known as “EDM.” Yet it would seem inaccurate to call Miike Snow a dance group. Their…

Review: Animal Collective – Painting With

Listening to Animal Collective is a lot like visiting a modern art gallery. Some visitors may rave about everything they see, calling even the most abstract works “genius.” Others may be less impressed by what they see, not understanding how anyone could find them brilliant (especially without being on drugs) or perhaps just saying “…I…

Top Albums of 2015

2015 was an all-around amazing year for music. There were some astounding debuts, great surprises by bands that hadn’t been heard from in years, and high-quality albums by artists that have yet to let us down. There were also a number of good-but-not great albums by indie heavyweights (The Decemberists, Belle and Sebastian, Modest Mouse)…

Better Know A Genre: Alternative

From the mild Coldplay to the stadium-filling Muse to the ever-changing Beck, it seems like music labeled “alternative” is everywhere. “Alternative” is usually known to be short for “alternative rock,” but there’s also alternative country (frequently abbreviated “alt-country”), alternative hip-hop, and alternative metal. In these latter cases one, can deduce that “alternative” means “different from…

Top 10 Indie Music Videos for Halloween

When Halloween rolls around, there are very few songs that seem appropriate for the holiday. It’s not like Christmas, where every other band has released a song or album for the occasion. Sure there’s “Monster Mash,” but that’s a novelty song that gets old after exactly one listen. As far as music videos, yes, there’s…

The Top 10 Ridiculous Indie Subgenres

As controversial as they are, musical genres help us better express what we listen to and find artists similar to those we already enjoy. In general terms, you can say you enjoy “rock” or “hip-hop” or “country.” With indie music, you might say “this has a folk sound” or “this is garage rock” or “this…

Better Know A Genre: Indie

Better Know a Genre: Indie I thought that since I’m mostly going to be writing about music that is considered “indie” here, that it might be a good first step to examine what exactly what “indie music” means. The short answer is that the “indie” in “indie music” is short for independent. The actual definition…