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Kanye West

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Soul training

Suddenly, Mayer Hawthorne is running retro-pop
Mayer Hawthorne rose to instant retro-pop acclaim the same way that everyone from Al Green to Michael Jackson moved on up — work and luck.
By CHRIS FARAONE  |  September 22, 2009

Cheesy and crackers

Too much southern exposure. Plus, a rant — unpamper those kids!
There is no place hotter in the media lately than South Carolina, "The Cracker State," whose logo is still  essentially the Confederate flag.
By PHILLIPE AND JORGE  |  September 16, 2009

Assholes rule

Max is the Minimum
It seems that, these days, being a self-righteous boor is the new "in" thing.
By TOM MEEK  |  September 16, 2009

Glorious bastards

Deerhunter's path from divisive buzz band to indie royalty
Few bands could serve as a better case study on the influence of Internet hype on mainstream media and popular acceptance than Deerhunter. Before the band "broke" in early 2007, to a glowing Pitchfork review of their album Cryptograms , the Atlanta four-piece were virtual unknowns nationally.
By CHRISTOPHER GRAY  |  September 02, 2009

Dance Fever

Where to shake it like you mean it
Those with a hankering for slick riffs and dirty break beats look no further.
By ABIGAIL CROCKER  |  September 03, 2009

The Big Hurt: Checking the Billboard Hot 100

Who charted?
As usual, I won't be able to make it through the full 100, but seven is just as good, right?
By DAVID THORPE  |  August 25, 2009

Interview: John Legend

A different kind of R&B star
Despite being one of the most successful R&B singers of the decade — with six Grammys and three top-selling albums — John Legend is something of an oddball.
By BEN WESTHOFF  |  August 05, 2009

More than a feeling

Music inspires art at the MFA, Panopticon, and the Gardner
The centerpiece of the Museum of Fine Arts' "Contemporary Outlook: Seeing Songs" is Candice Breitz's 2005 Queen (A Portrait of Madonna), a wall of 30 televisions, each showing a different Madonna fan singing a cappella to her 1990 greatest-hits compilation, The Immaculate Collection. They wear headphones, bob their heads, sing aloud to music we can't hear.
By GREG COOK  |  July 21, 2009
fat joe list

The block is hot

Jumping genres at Providence Sound Session '09
The summer sun has arrived just in time for the "premier genre-defying summer music festival" known as Sound Session '09, a weeklong block party and musical melting pot for the masses kicking off on Sunday, July 5 and culminating in the climactic, carnival-style parade trough downtown on Saturday, July 11.
By CHRIS CONTI  |  June 30, 2009

Fresh Lobsters bring the crowds

Shoe Fly Dept.
Stinking junkies weren't the only ones sleeping on Harvard Square sidewalks this past week. More than 300 sneaker heads queued outside of street-shoe mecca Concepts, on Brattle Street, for five days and nights in anticipation of last Saturday's release of the world's only 260 pairs of Nike Blue Lobster SB Dunks.
By CHRIS FARAONE  |  June 24, 2009
triangle list

Weird and wired

A small band of electronic music acts take on a rock ’n’ roll city  
  It is, of course, difficult to attach a single sound to a city. And Providence is no exception.
By DAVID SCHARFENBERG  |  June 03, 2009

Feel the beat

Odaiko New England turns 15, wails on huge drums
A single set of precise, thundering beats fills the modest rehearsal space of Woburn's American Chinese Art Society. The sound rattles the flooring and shakes my guts. It emanates from a petite woman holding two thick wooden sticks and walloping a pair of hip-high, double-headed wooden drums.
By ANNE VICKMAN  |  May 28, 2009

Magic man

Theo Martins kills 'em with kindness
If the first quarter of '09 is an indicator of things to come for Theo Martins the Providence-based lyricist had better buckle up for what should be the biggest year in his budding hip-hop career.
By CHRIS CONTI  |  April 15, 2009

60. Kanye West

You can only drop so many comments along the lines of “I’m the most fashionable straight guy alive” before people stop thinking it’s cute and start throwing rocks at you. Mr. West, you’ve crossed that line, and we have pocketfuls of extremely large pebbles.
By Boston Phoenix Staff  |  March 25, 2009

Things fall apart

Hip-hop finds room to move at South-By.
As hipster, electronic, indie-rock, and rap cultures converge, MCs are taking cues from their other-genre contemporaries who rely on everything from stage props and antics to self-mutilation in the quest to entertain.
By CHRIS FARAONE  |  March 25, 2009

All at once

N.A.S.A.’s gang bangers might be a little much
If nothing else, the release of The Spirit of Apollo (Anti-) a few weeks ago by the intercontinental hip-hop/baile/other duo of N.A.S.A. (that’s North America/South America) makes an encouraging, if not actually uttered, statement.
By MICHAEL BRODEUR  |  March 03, 2009

Present perfect

Mickey Factz is here to catch your asses up.
For some hip-hop heads, artists like Mickey Factz represent everything that reeks in rap. Between his bypassing the rugged underground, blowing up on-line, and occasionally kicking Kanye-esque arrogance, he's an easy target for so-called purists.
By CHRIS FARAONE  |  March 02, 2009

The Big Hurt: Marley pimped, Miley sorry, Kanye secure

Music news in brief
This goes to print a week after I write it because of the damnable pre-Web technology of the printed page, but I swear to God that I was the first son of a bitch to think of it: Jackson Browne, James Brown, Bobby Brown, Chris Brown .
By DAVID THORPE  |  February 19, 2009

Quitters, tinklers, tacklers, and whoppers

The Big Hurt: Music news in brief
David Berman of Silver Jews intends to quit the music biz and concentrate on writing prose, says a post on the Drag City Web site.
By DAVID THORPE  |  February 02, 2009

2008 Listravaganza Part 2

The lighter side of music in 2008
Everything you wanted to know about the year in music, in tidy lists of 10.
By BOSTON PHOENIX MUSIC STAFF  |  January 05, 2009

2008 Listravaganza!

An absolute glut of cruelly reductive Top 10 lists from our dedicated staff of tirelessly enthusiastic writers
We are not at all sick of bands with animal names yet and seem to have a soft spot for Erykah Badu that we kept very hush about all year.
By BOSTON PHOENIX MUSIC STAFF  |  December 31, 2008

Smooth operators

The year in Auto-Tune
The year in Auto-Tune
By RICHARD BECK  |  December 24, 2008

Year in National Pop: New attitudes

Are we fated to pretend?
Are we fated to pretend?
By DANIEL BROCKMAN  |  December 22, 2008

Review: Kanye West | 808s and Heartbreak

West Coasts
Roc-A-Fella (2008)
By RICHARD BECK  |  December 15, 2008

Feel the music

We may be the last generation to give tangible tunes for Christmas
I personally find it comforting that the current number-one single in the country has a chorus that goes "I'll gas up the jet for you tonight, and baby we can go wherever you like."
By DANIEL BROCKMAN  |  December 11, 2008

88-Keys | The Death of Adam

Decon (2008)
Kanye’s true genius has always been his leeching onto more talented beatmakers.
By CHRIS FARAONE  |  November 24, 2008

Mirror ball

Fables of deconstruction
The stirring pop hits of the day can’t help but reflect the refracting cracked mirror of our nation’s increasingly emotion-laden psyche.
By DANIEL BROCKMAN  |  September 08, 2008

Lil Wayne

Tha Carter III | Young Money/Cash Money/Universal
All rappers ride on the claim that they’re the best, but on III Wayne makes his case.
By BEN WESTHOFF  |  June 17, 2008


Kanye West and Rihanna at Tweeter Center, May 15, 2008
Kanye’s music more than lived up to his visual and conceptual audacity.
By RICHARD BECK  |  May 29, 2008

Funny business

As the AltCom Festival arrives at the Somerville Theatre, we look at the roots of the indie comedy boom.
“Ashlee Simpson’s new album sold so poorly,” snorted the headline on Yahoo! this past week, that “it was beaten by a comedy album.”
By MIKE MILIARD  |  May 08, 2008

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