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July 2016
Big Thief
"Masterpiece
"
mp3

Throughout Masterpiece, the humbly sublime debut album from Brooklyn folk-rock quartet Big Thief, love braves through woe. As sung by the ever welcoming Adrienne Lenker, these painful yet vital songs near a height of beauty that reminds one of music’s transcendent power.

Following the nimble opener “Little Arrow,” the album starts its raw power with “Masterpiece” (streaming below), the rollicking single that deservedly drew attention a few months back with its panoramic view of searching souls. Like Bob Dylan’s generation-defining “Like a Rolling Stone” from the 1960s, this guitar-trickled song is both addicting and elegant, rough and pretty and, ultimately, lasting in its sheer soulfulness.

A series of lyrically vivid tracks named after potential lovers (“Paul” and “Randy,” for example) follows next, alongside guitar-winded cuts that briskly tackle such elusive motifs as romance and the transience of time, emitting an overall beatific aura in the process.

The type of record that has the possibility of transporting the listener to a calmer, perhaps better plain of existence, Masterpiece is not just the first offering from an intriguing new band but a preciously passionate work in and of itself. – Zach Weg

 
The 60's

Band of Gypsys

Bob Dylan

Bruce Haack

The Fugs

The Godz

Holy Modal Rounders

Velvet Underground
The 70's
Television
Patti Smith
The New York Dolls

The Ramones

The Talking Heads
Richard Hell
The Dead Boys
Blondie
Suicide
Lydia Lunch
DNA  
Mars
The Contortions  
The 80's
Afrika Bambaataa
Arto Lindsay
Bad Brains
Beastie Boys
Bruce Springsteen
The Feelies
The Fleshtones
Grandmaster Melle Mel
John Zorn
Laurie Anderson
Public Enemy
Run D.M.C.
Sonic Youth
Swans
They Might Be Giants
The 90's
A Tribe Called Quest
Cat Power

Jeff Buckley

The Magnetic Fields
Nas
The Notorious B.I.G.
Soul Coughing
Yo La Tengo
The 00's
The Strokes
Interpol
TV on The Radio
Fiery Furnaces
Yeah Yeah Yeahs
The Bravery
Animal Collective
Bright Eyes
Devendra Banhart
Moldy Peaches
Le Tigre
Liars
Blonde Redhead
Grizzly Bear
 

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scene blog

NYC "electro-twang"? D.V.S. plays Brooklyn Bowl on 09.05

NYC "electro-twang"? D.V.S. plays Brooklyn Bowl on 09.05

Like everyone knows, hip-hop got its start by DJs continuously looping the hottest breaks of funk/R&B songs at house parties. So a space that was originally about 10 seconds would be stretched to three or four minutes.

I feel like Brooklyn based producer Derek VanScoten's project - called just D.V.S. - with their new album ‘Coming Up For Air: Vol. 2 dawn‘, has done something similar with electronica. Active in the same musical playground of other groove-happy maximal groups like Ratatat or Fuckbuttons, D.V.S. expands on smaller loops, and builds worlds around these otherwise simple statement. Derek's twangy, often sliding guitar is the glue that keeps the pieces of this musical universe together.

Album opener ‘The Bending Bloom’ for instance, orbits around a single hook for its four minutes, expanding and contracting for an organic series of turns as unique as it is engrossing. The band even ventures into R&B material the way Flying Lotus updates free jazz for the mobile generation. From their first record’s focus on dusk, to their latest LP’s meditations on dawn, D.V.S. is an exciting group that knows how to make good use of their sources. - Mike Levine (@Goldnuggets)

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