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2009 Stories by Doug Wallen

Archives: 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007
  • Hunx + the Punkettes

    published December 30, 2009

    Having teased us long enough with his stream of subversive singles and inspired videos, San Francisco's colorful Hunx has finally... More >>

  • The Morning Benders

    published December 30, 2009

    Following last year's much-loved Talking Through Tin Cans, Berkeley pop hopefuls the Morning Benders have just wrapped Big... More >>

  • Clean Pickin’

    published December 30, 2009

    The specter of the South may loom large in the songs of the Builders and the Butchers, as do God and the Devil, but the five-piece has its... More >>

  • Church

    published December 23, 2009

    An air of mystery hangs over Portland, Ore., quartet Church, and not simply because of its vague name. The band's debut album, Song... More >>

  • Rickie Lee Jones

    published December 16, 2009

    Now touring with a backing trio, seasoned songwriter Rickie Lee Jones assembled recent album Balm in Gilead from material written... More >>

  • Rural Alberta Advantage

    published December 16, 2009

    Brimming with frazzled urgency, Nils Edenloff's strained, scraping vocals are the best part of listening to the Rural Alberta Advantage.... More >>

  • Prewar Punk

    published December 16, 2009

    Squirrel Nut Zippers were always a bit too weird for the swing revival. The North Carolina troupe was also incredibly well-studied,... More >>

  • Fool’s Gold goes global from L.A.’s eclectic metropolis

    published December 9, 2009

    "This music helps us express something we can't quite articulate," says Luke Top of Fool's Gold, the Los Angeles collective he founded with... More >>

  • Baroness gets the blues

    published December 2, 2009

    As more bands defy genre limitations, a slew of sub- and microstyles have sprung up to corral the unruly creative types. Try as anyone might,... More >>

  • Stylish Ladies

    published December 2, 2009

    Once easily pigeonholed as old-timey or twee, the Ditty Bops have thrived this decade without altering their peculiar formula: airy... More >>

  • The Books

    published November 25, 2009

    After a considerable hibernation, the Books are publicly resuming activity with a brief tour to preview new songs. The New York duo of... More >>

  • The xx

    published November 18, 2009

    Erasing the gap between industrial postpunk and minimal R&B, England's hotly tipped quartet, the xx, recognizes the power of a riled-up... More >>

  • Neon Indian’s warm, retro glow

    published November 18, 2009

    Mapping out a universe of spongy synth leads and canned beats, Texas tinkerer Alan Palomo has managed an offbeat triumph in Psychic... More >>

  • It's a Family Affair

    published November 18, 2009

    Boasting a drummer in his early teens and the unusual name he dreamed up, Seattle five-piece Mt. St. Helens Vietnam Band has enough quirks... More >>

  • Fuck Buttons crank the noise, add nuance

    published November 11, 2009

    Despite using a name you wouldn't repeat in polite company, the London instrumental duo Fuck Buttons really isn't that unpalatable. This... More >>

  • Julian Casablancas

    published November 11, 2009

    Long the Strokes' slurred voice of sleazy cool, Julian Casablancas has become the latest member of that band to indulge in a side... More >>

  • The Not-Beach Boys

    published November 11, 2009

    The dreary musings of the Black Heart Procession’s Pall Jenkins and Tobias Nathaniel have never been affected by the sunny beaches of... More >>

  • Go Jump in the LAKE

    published November 11, 2009

    On his third album for K Records, quirky Pacific Northwest troubadour Karl Blau further feels out the African-inspired sounds he has... More >>

  • Gift of Gab’s talent sidetracks his solo missions

    published November 4, 2009

    It's been five years since Oakland rapper Gift of Gab made his solo debut with 4th Dimensional Rocketships Going Up, but the wait for a... More >>

  • But Is It Art?

    published October 28, 2009

    Tom Van Buskirk and George Langford are big on recycling. As Javelin, the Rhode Island cousins make jumpy electronic pop that mines old... More >>

  • Le Loup

    published October 21, 2009

    Le Loup plies a breathy jumble — all globe-trotting rhythms and experimental pop — that is very much of its time. The... More >>

  • Daniel Johnston teams up for power pop greatness

    published October 21, 2009

    Daniel Johnston has weathered dramatic peaks and valleys in his 30 years of writing, recording, and warbling songs. He had early brushes with... More >>

  • A Place to Bury Strangers

    published October 14, 2009

    It's useless describing A Place to Bury Strangers without mentioning the volume. The New York trio has repeatedly been called that... More >>

  • Boom Riggins

    published October 14, 2009

    Based in the same Idaho stomping grounds that spawned Built to Spill, boy-girl-girl trio Finn Riggins has been invited to join that band on... More >>

  • What What-ers?

    published October 7, 2009

    From the damaged grind of 1987’s classic album Locust Abortion Technician to 1996’s Beck-like fluke single “Pepper,”... More >>

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