Into The Great Outdoors With Great Lake Swimmers

Great Lake Swimmers

Great Lake Swimmers are a band at home in the wild. Listening to them, you get the feeling that you’re in the wilderness yourself—maybe in an old, creaky boat surrounded by gray water. You’re in no particular hurry. You just let the waves push you where they want you to go, comfortable just letting them lap against you until you realize that you’ve been taken to a completely new place.

This is not a far stretch, really. Great Lake Swimmers have been known to make a studio in the wildest of places; places you have to hike to; places you have to ferry gear across in little boats. Their latest album, New Wild Everywhere, is no exception. The song “The Great Exhale,” for example (quite possibly the record’s high point), was recorded in an abandoned subway station in Toronto.

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Album Review: “High Violet” by The National

The National High Violet

By Steven Spoerl

After hearing leaked tracks and seeing a few of the new ones performed live last year at Milwaukee’s gorgeous Pabst Theater, I had very high expectations for The National’s High Violet.  After finally getting my hands on a copy and giving it an inaugural listen, I was completely satisfied with the fluidity and strength of the record, but wondered about its staying power as it hadn’t gripped me as intensely as Alligator or Boxer did.

Then I thought back to Sad Songs For Dirty Lovers and was a little uplifted as I had the exact same trepidations after listening to that record for the first time.  It was one that I ultimately revisited almost as much as Alligator and Boxer. With that in mind, I found myself being pulled back in for another round, to give High Violet another try.

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CD Review: Manic Street Preachers, “Journal For Plague Lovers”

Journal For Plague Lovers

In November of 2008, Richey James Edwards (lyricist and guitarist for The Manic Street Preachers) was declared “presumed dead,” following his mysterious disappearance in 1995 at that cursed age of 27.  Just months earlier, the band had released The Holy Bible, what many critics consider to be the most depressing album of all time.

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CD Review: Bob Dylan’s “Together Through Life”

Together Through Life

The release of Bob Dylan’s 33rd studio album, Together Through Life, came as a surprise to even his most devout fans.  News of the album’s release came only weeks before it hit stores, setting the music community in a frenzy, drooling for a taste of the new tunes.
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CD Review: The Boy Least Likely To, “The Law of the Playground”

The Law of the Playground

It’s been said that The Boy Least Likely To sounds like what would happen “if all your childhood stuffed animals got together and started a band.”  A slightly terrifying thought, but there really aren’t too many other descriptions that so neatly classifies the sweetly innocent tunes that the band produces.

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