Category Archives: Listening To History

Mingus Ah Um

Charles Mingus (1959) This album came out at a pivotal time for jazz, after it had experienced a surge in popularity with cool and swing earlier in the decade, and right when a second revolution had arrived. Bop and non-modal … Continue reading

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Bow To the Queen: A Remarkable Pop Album

Janelle Monae is making Kansas City proud, authoring & masterminding most of the epic LP in question. I won’t hedge any bets here: The Archandroid is surely one of the last frontiers of truly original pop/R&B/rap music. And it is … Continue reading

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The 2010s

In organizing and categorizing the last five-plus decades of rock music, many trends have emerged, all of them pointing toward one eventuality. You see, innovation and cultural significance are the lifeblood of this artform. With the medium’s nascence in the … Continue reading

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In Rainbows

Radiohead (2007) First of all, I’ll dispense with the normal copy that this record gets: Yes, it used an almost-unprecedented pay-what-you-want system. It was released sight-unseen onto the online market, far before a physical copy was available. The band managed … Continue reading

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The Mouse And the Mask

DangerDOOM (2005) Now this is an odd bird. In 2005, self-released, “leaked” music was beginning to be endorsed by the artists that recorded it. For them, the dissemination and enjoyment of the music was more important than profits. It also … Continue reading

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LCD Soundsystem

LCD Soundsystem (2005) LCD Soundsystem succeeds and stands out from the crowd because its mastermind, James Murphy, knows his music. He took the entire history of dance, electronic and rhythmic music and fused it to a neurotic, self-aware personal narrative … Continue reading

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Late Registration

Kanye West (2005) Kanye West is perhaps the most important modern musician, since he effortlessly combines the spheres of public opinion and critical adoration while finding ways to satiate and challenge both. He’s obviously a polarizing, brazen figure, but you … Continue reading

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