Category Archives: Latest in the Streets

Mourn

The first album by this very young quartet from Barcelona is what folks used to mean by alternative rock: a genuinely contrary fury of jagged-granite guitars and severe pop discipline. Mourn’s grip and immediacy in “Dark Issues,” “Misery Factory” and “Marshall” (the chorus: “Shut up, Marshall!”) are especially remarkable as…

Vestiges & Claws

Swedish singer-songwriter José González’s new album — which is just the third LP from the 36-year-old artist, in a 12-year solo career — sticks to the formula that has served him well in the past. Intricate fingerpicking backs up his soft vocals; melodies flow without urgency; vague but evocative lyrics drift to…

Terraplane

For his 16th album, country renegade Steve Earle gets in touch with the hardboiled blues of his native Texas — not the sad-slurring, throw-yourself-in-the-bayou blues, but the bar-stomping variety. Songs like the scorching “Go Go Boots Are Back” are stacked with the tight musicianship of his longtime band the Dukes, including-…

Ain’t in No Hurry

Once a pioneer of San Francisco psychedelia, Jorma Kaukonen is a bona fide graybeard folk swami at age 74. His latest LP is all austere, unplugged displays of the Piedmont finger style that’s been his signature since his 1966 Jefferson Airplane showpiece “Embryonic Journey.” There are covers and originals: “The…

Guitars and Microphones

Kate Pierson has defined the eccentric soul of the B-52s for more than three decades. Now the feisty Jersey girl has a private Idaho of her own. Executive-produced by Sia, Pierson’s solo debut is a collection of brassy manifestoes about independence and, naturally, outer space. One of the best intergalactic…

True Romance

In 2008 — the same year another one-name British soul-pop singer called Adele arrived — Estelle made her own splash with “American Boy.” Although her fourth LP lacks a killer Kanye collaboration like that one, she doesn’t need it. Tracing the stages of a relationship, the album is split into themes including…

Smoke + Mirrors

Let’s give Imagine Dragons credit where it’s due. On their multiplatinum 2012 debut, Night Visions, the Las Vegas act found a way to reheat old-fashioned arena-rock catharsis for the segmented pop world of the 2010s — fusing Coldplay’s heart-hugging balladry, Arcade Fire’s darkly heroic surge, neon Killers synths and elements of…

Wanted on Voyage

A chart-topping smash in the U.K., this English singer-songwriter’s debut LP is a post-Spotify wonder, triangulating herky-jerky indie rock, the rustic strum of Lumineers-style folk and the blue-eyed R&B of his tourmate Sam Smith. George Ezra’s sound is omnivorous, and his swagger is decidedly modern, but the 21-year-old star has…