Thursday, December 29, 2011

Top 20 Tracks of 2011

1. John Maus, “Quantum Leap”

2. Lana Del Ray, “Video Games”

3. The Strokes, “Taken for a Fool”

4. M83, “Midnight City”

5. Kanye West and Jay-Z, “Why I Love You”

6. Drake w/ Rick Ross, “Lord Knows”

7. Pictureplane, “Breath Work”

8. TV on the Radio, “You”

9. Liturgy, “Dedication”

10. Dawes, “So Well”

11. The Black Keys, “Little Black Submarines”

12. The War on Drugs, “Come to the City”

13. Cass McCombs, “Hermit’s Cave”

14. A$AP Rocky, “Palace”

15. Washed Out, “Amor Fati”

16. WU LYF, “Dirt”

17. Lia Ices, “After Is Always Before”

18. Jeffrey Lewis, “Cult Boyfriend”

19. Real Estate, “Wonder Years”

20. Twerps, “Coast to Coast”

If you'd like to listen to my Spotify playlist of these songs, head here. Other Reverb contributors list their favorite songs, alongside mine, here.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Sunday Paper

The Denver Post's Sunday paper has been pretty good to me in the past month. On September 24th, the A&E section published a feature I wrote on local band, Gauntlet Hair. Look for its debut album and a national tour next week.

This past Sunday, October 9th, the Travel section contained a guide I wrote for my mother's hometown of Cleveland, Ohio. Check it out here.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Totally Metro

I've written a couple pieces for my old Time Out editor-in-chief, Michael Freidson, who is now over at Metro International. One, "Nerds Rule the World," has appeared in some interesting corners.

Check out the St. Petersburg version here, Moscow here, Guatemala City here, Monterrey here, Mexico City here and Montreal here. And, oh, if you speak English, you might want to open the Toronto version.

Tuesday, August 02, 2011


It seems that any true measure of success has a gatekeeper that is mainly edited by that guy who lives down the hall and stays in his apartment—which smells disconcertingly like sardines—363 days a year. Yes, I'm talking about Wikipedia.

I was pleased a few years ago when I noticed that my interview with Panda Bear from Shoutmouth had been quoted on Animal Collective's Strawberry Jam Wiki page. But, just yesterday—here in New York City, visiting—I was Googling around for some past work and happened upon this:

Time Out New York featured the album on its list of the Best and Worst Albums of 2008. The magazine's writer Colin St. John cited 808s & Heartbreak as one of the worst of 2008, and editor Steve Smith named it third on his best-of list, while calling the album "the year's most misunderstood triumph."

Better check yo'self, Smith! The above is from the Wikipedia page of 808s & Heartbreak; I am honored to be found under its "Accolades" section. And, yes, for the record, that record is just plain bad. Here's what I had to say in the aforementioned list:

Kanye West 808s & Heartbreak (Roc-A-Fella). It wasn’t a terrible record, but it could have been great if West hadn’t stepped on his own toes with ridiculous electronic overproduction.

(Oh, and here's my full review.)

You did it again, Internet.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Props to My Pops

My father has been the wine columnist over at The Chicago Tribune for a bit now and I'm really proud of what he's done in a relatively short time. He's been writing and teaching about wine for more than 30 years, so it's nearly miraculous that he makes his wine coverage so fresh, inviting and natural. (While also peppering in some erudite references here and there, for good measure.)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

I Might Be Wrong


Today I started an opinion column (about music) over at Reverb. It's called "I Might Be Wrong." Radiohead does not suck.

I think it'd be fair to say that some people were not too pleased with the characterization of the band U2 in my first article. And, that's just the point. I hope there are many more disagreements to come. What's music if we can't all yell at each other about it?

(I think my favorite comment might be from user Yousuck who writes, "You are the one that sucks, writer.")

Check back each Tuesday (-ish) for more back-and-forths.

PS - A friend sent me an excerpt today from Ellen Willis's book, Out of the Vinyl Deeps, which is just out. It's from her report from Woodstock and is just great. (I echoed a similar sentiment about U2's ticket prices.) Anyhow, here:

"What cultural revolutionaries do not seem to grasp is that, far from being a grass-roots art form that has been taken over by businessmen, rock itself comes from a commercial exploitation of the blues. It is bourgeois at its core, a mass-produced commodity, dependent on advanced technology and therefore on the money controlled by those in power. Its rebelliousness does not imply specific political content; it can be—and has been—criminal, fascistic, and coolly individualistic as well as revolutionary. Nor is the hip lifestyle inherently radical. It can simply be a more pleasurable way of surviving within the system, which is what the pop sensibility has always been about. Certainly that was what Woodstock was about: ignore the bad, groove on the good, hang loose, and let things happen. The truth is that there can’t be a revolutionary culture until there is a revolution. In the meantime, we should at least insist that the capitalists who produce rock concerts charge reasonable prices for reasonable service."

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Sunday, March 20, 2011

South by Southwest

I've been down here in Austin writing about music, admittedly not anywhere nearly as well as Ghostface Killah.

That said, check out my words if you'd like.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Print it

It was great news to hear that the review I wrote for The Denver Post's Reverb was printed in the actual newspaper (yep, they still exist) this morning. Check it:

That one's for Bill.

Thursday, February 03, 2011



I've been pretty busy writing as of late. My old rag, Time Out New York, has published a preview of Wye Oak and Lia Ices album review. Stay tuned for some more upcoming jams for TONY.

AOL Spinner posted an interview I did with locals Woodsman, The Denver Post's Reverb went live with my reviews of PWC + RGC and the Disco Biscuits. Most excitingly, Westword came out with my feature on FaceMan today.

I also would like to welcome some new readers to the blog who have come by way of Largehearted Boy linking to my Top Albums of the year post.


Friday, January 21, 2011

Top 25 Tracks of 2010

1. Caribou, “Odessa”

2. Kanye West, “Runaway”

3. LCD Soundsystem, “Dance Yrself Clean”

4. Das Racist, “hahahaha jk?”

5. Twin Shadow, “When We’re Dancing”

6. Javelin, “We Ah Wi”

7. Crystal Castles, “Baptism”

8. Sharon van Etten, “Save Yourself”

9. Hot Chip, “I Feel Better”

10. Wolf Parade, “What Did My Lover Say?”

11. Panda Bear, “Drone”

12. Broken Bells, “Your Head Is On Fire”

Click here.

13. Suckers, “Black Sheep”

14. Joanna Newsom, “Good Intentions Paving Company”

15. Yeasayer, “O.N.E.”

16. Salem, “Redlights”

17. Buke and Gass, “Your Face Left Before You”

18. Four Tet, “She Just Likes to Fight”

19. FLIGHT, “Goodbye Horses”

20. The Walkmen, “Woe Is Me”

21. Cee Lo Green, “Fuck You!”

22. ceo, “White Magic”

23. Wavves, "King of the Beach"

24. Sleigh Bells, “Rill Rill”

25. No Age, “Depletion”

I have been informed that my Pazz and Jop ballot was sent to my old Time Out email address, so I didn't vote this year. (It seems unlikely that I would've been able to singlehandedly alter Kanye's sweep, anyhow.) For what it's worth, here are my favorite songs of the year and their respective streams. My favorite albums are below; you can read more about what I thought of them here, at Time Out.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The Denver Post

My father wrote for The Denver Post for two-and-a-half years. (He was at The Rocky Mountain News, R.I.P., for 14.) So, it's nice to have a byline on The Post's Reverb site today.
I wrote a review of the Peter Wolf Crier and Retribution Gospel Choir show last night at the Hi-Dive. Here it be. Looking forward to writing more show reviews for Reverb in the near future...