Deerhoof

| Jan 16, 2009

Deerhoof

by Philip Brasor

Occasionally, you’ll run across a review that says San Francisco’s Deerhoof are the greatest band in the world. They’re not, but you can understand why some people think so. There’s something perfect and unique about their angular, chaotic guitar songs, and how many bands ...

Cursive

| Sep 10, 2003

Cursive

by Philip Brasor

In the summer of 2002, Eastern Youth, the most conscientious punk band in Japan, released “Eight Teeth to Eat You,” a split CD with the Omaha emo-core band Cursive. Then they announced they would bring the group to Japan for a short joint tour. ...

Scout Niblett

| Sep 10, 2003

Scout Niblett

by Suzannah Tartan

Scout Niblett deserves to be a star just on the strength of her name. Born Emma Niblett, she adopted “Scout” as a performing moniker because of an obsession with the leading character in the Southern saga “To Kill a Mockingbird.” The South turns up ...

Roscoe Holcomb: 'An Untamed Sense of Control'

| Sep 10, 2003

Roscoe Holcomb: "An Untamed Sense of Control"

by Michael Pronko

Among instruments, the banjo is one of the few considered truly an American original. Roscoe Holcomb’s voice could be considered another. A just-released collection, “An Untamed Sense of Control,” shows just how original he was. Holcomb’s taut banjo playing and piercing vocals encapsulate the ...

Asagiri Jam

| Sep 10, 2003

Asagiri Jam

by Simon Bartz

I’m gonna tell you a secret. It involves time travel. It’s like this: There’s a portal. Like a wormhole. And it opens up in the foothills of Mount Fuji in September. You just got to know the right place and the right time. This ...

Roy Hargrove

| Sep 3, 2003

Roy Hargrove

by Michael Pronko

What’s a nice, clean-cut hard-bopping trumpeter, one of the best to hit the jazz scene in the ’90s, doing growing dreadlocks, wearing baggy pants and making a funk-soul CD? Roy Hargrove’s latest release, “The RH Factor, Hard Groove,” follows a string of excellent hard-bop ...

Abdul Tee-Jay and Palm Wine A-Go-Go

| Sep 3, 2003

Abdul Tee-Jay and Palm Wine A-Go-Go

by Tom Bojko

Sierra Leone might be most closely associated with blood diamonds and gruesome images of civil war, but it is also the home of palm wine music, a happy, bubbling style of guitar picking. Palm wine music, or maringa, as it’s known inside the country, ...

Joao Gilberto

| Aug 27, 2003

Joao Gilberto

by Philip Brasor

Experts agree that two pop music genres were invented by individuals: bluegrass by the American mandolinist Bill Monroe in 1938, and bossa nova by Brazilian Antonio Carlos Jobim in the mid-’50s. Jobim wrote “Desafinado,” and while, in 1957, this was bossa nova’s first big ...

Richard Bona: 'Munia (The Tale)'

| Aug 27, 2003

Richard Bona: "Munia (The Tale)"

by Michael Pronko

One of the encouragements jazz players often shout to each other during intense solos is “Tell the story!” On Cameroonian Richard Bona’s third release, “Munia (The Tale),” he does just that by weaving lovely epic tales in melody and rhythm that combine West African ...

Broadcast: 'Ha Ha Sound'

| Aug 27, 2003

Broadcast: "Ha Ha Sound"

by Jeff Hammond

Rarely does a gem shine out from the dull ground of contemporary electronica, but when one does it should be treasured. Such is “Ha Ha Sound,” Broadcast’s second album. The ’60s have clearly had an influence on Broadcast that extends beyond the group’s fondness ...