Tag: Indie Folk

1993, Music

There Is No-One What Will Take Care of You (1993) by Palace Brothers

The impact of this record is dimmed a lot by time and by familiarity with Will Oldham’s career. Apparently this was initially released without credits and the sense of mystery that and the music contained herein created probably has a lot to do with this record’s reputation and the launching of Oldham’s career (as Palace …

1993, Music

Fuzzy (1993) by Grant Lee Buffalo

I decided to talk about this record, rather than any number of other records from 1988 and 1993, in part because Michael Stipe once claimed it was the best album of 1993. Now, I don’t necessarily share musical states with the lead singer of REM, but I do feel like he had an important role, …

1997, Music

Either-Or (1997) by Elliott Smith

The problem with hype is that it makes you have expectations that can never be met. And, for some reason, the the death of someone just makes this so much worse, but in retrospect. Once a beloved musician dies, everything they ever made becomes a masterpiece and must be held up as proof as the …

1996, Movies

What Would The Community Think? (1996) by Cat Power

This is a solid collection of rootsy indie music. Her songs are strong and the arrangements are idiosyncratic, albeit not anywhere near as idiosyncratic as was becoming common in the indie world. I have always thought I should get into Cat Power but, though I like this record, I find it kind of innocuous. It’s …

1991, Music

Sebadoh III (1991)

Without having heard the two previous albums, and not being familiar enough with the evolution of home recordings in the ’80s, I still feel confident in saying that I think this album is a pretty big deal; it’s influence on 90s indie rock, indie folk and the lo-fi movement in general is rather immense. Along …

1996, Music

On Avery Island (1996) by Neutral Milk Hotel

This feels like the inevitable result of trying to make folk music in the age of indie rock and, specifically, in the age of Pavement (and their related bands). So much of what they do here has become canonical or cliche (depending on your point of view) for the numerous indie folk bands that have …

2011, Music

All is Not Lost (2011) by Cody Allen

On the first track, at least, Allen seems to be going for some kind of slightly more country, slightly more commercial version of Elliott Brood’s take on alt country (horribly named, by them, “death country”), with a little less energy. (Sounds wonderful, doesn’t it?) And the album proceeds like that, where you can tick off …

2013, Music

Big Wheel and Others (2013) by Cass McCombs

This is my first experience of McCombs and I have to say I am impressed. He has a good but idiosyncratic sense of melody, he’s got his aesthetic down, and his lyrics are strong, which is probably the most important thing with someone like this. His lyrics make use of all sorts of traditional tropes …

2012, Music

Blunderbuss (2012 Third Man Records) by Jack White

I don’t know what people were expecting but all I can say is that hype is a terrible thing. It’s funny reading all the disappointment on RYM. As much as I loved the White Stripes – and I did, and I do – one thing I can’t say is that they were particularly original or …

2011, Music

Impossible Spaces by Sandro Perri (Constellation, 2011)

Like so many people labeled “indie,” Perri is full of ideas. And like so many people labeled “indie” Perri could use a producer to get him to keep the right ideas and cut the less good ones. But that isn’t the main problem with this album, as it is with so many albums. Rather the …

2011, Music

Mooniture by Anna Atkinson (2011)

Atkinson is like a less-quirky, far more accessible, Canadian Joanna Newsom, at least the early Joanna Newsom. Her voice is a lot more traditional, but there is a similar sense of humour and ear for melody on sometimes¬†nontraditional¬†folk instruments. Her songs are decent and the instrumentation makes them far more interesting. The only problem really …

2007, Music

Invitation Songs by the Cave Singers (Matador 2007)

So it took me a while to get into this. The lead singer sounds a little bit like he is trying to be a country-ish young Lou Reed (you know, the guy you hear on those early Velvets demos). And the affectation (can I really believe he sound like this when he speaks?) is fucking …