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Music Review

  1. classical-music review
    Opera Review: The Met Brings Back Samson et Dalila, With Just Enough Fromage“To describe it as gaudy and silly is a compliment, not a complaint.”
  2. music review
    Music Review: Leonard Bernstein Is Paid Half-Hearted Tribute at TanglewoodAndris Nelsons conducted as if he would rather be at home watching TV. Some music can endure an uncommitted performance; Bernstein’s can’t.
  3. music review
    Music Review: Leonard Bernstein’s Mass Has Finally Found Its EraIt’s been called bloated, dated, naïve — but it also contains a lot of beauty.
  4. music review
    The Feel Good Mutant Soul of Dirty Projectors’ Lamp Lit ProseIt’s all upbeat ruminations on affection and excitement, where the last album fixated almost exhaustingly on rot.
  5. music review
    On Beast Mode 2, Future Hits Another Hot StreakAt his peak, it feels like melodies are just jumping out of his face.
  6. music review
    Teyana Taylor Finally Gets Her Moment to Shine on K.T.S.E.Teyana’s record is almost too good for the glut of disconcerting Kanye press that preceded it.
  7. music review
    On Everything Is Love, Beyoncé and Jay-Z are Performing a Marriage in Real TimeEach song here is the rare team-up where both parties sound like they’re pushing each other to greater heights.
  8. On Redemption, Jay Rock Searches for His VoiceThe more it focuses on Jay Rock’s knack for passionate storytelling, instead of flashy hooks and repetition, the better it fares.
  9. Dave Matthews Band’s Come Tomorrow Is a Quiet Moment in an Overstuffed YearIt’s all solid backyard cookout music and comforting headphone music.
  10. album review
    Kids See Ghosts Is the Win Kanye and Kid Cudi Badly NeededTheir debut collaborative album is the sound of old friends pooling their strengths to overcome tragedy.
  11. The Pretty Emptiness of Kanye West’s YeKanye West was once the everyman’s rapper, a poet of the downtrodden. He hasn’t been that artist in years.
  12. The Fascinatingly Weird World of A$AP Rocky’s TestingIt’s enticing in some spots, and unlistenable in others.
  13. Pusha-T’s Daytona Is His Best Album in YearsAnd you can tell he knows it’s great.
  14. Courtney Barnett Seeks Out Harsh Truths on Tell Me How You Really FeelIt’s a fitting document of these tumultuous times.
  15. The Internet Has Already Devoured ‘This Is America’But it still has power.
  16. Arctic Monkeys Find New Life by Rewriting Their FormulaTranquility Base Hotel and Casino ditches the old Arctic Monkeys sound in favor of late-night, self-aware vampire soul music.
  17. The New Beach House Album Is Their Best YetSame magic, new resolution.
  18. Kanye West Let Us DownIf he never comes back from wandering out on the edges with the trolls and the racists, the times we felt inspired by his work still belong to us.
  19. What It Means When Childish Gambino Says ‘This Is America’There’s a lot going on here.
  20. The Brightest Star on Travis Scott’s ‘Watch’ Isn’t Kanye WestCheerful, insistent, and futuristic, the Pi’erre Bourne beat is world-class.
  21. Portishead’s Third Was a Major Comeback for a Major BandIt’s an album that comes through clearer just as things get worse.
  22. Dirty Computer Is an Introduction to the Real Janelle MonáeIt’s as much a celebration of love as a threat to powerful merchants of hate.
  23. J. Cole’s KOD Is a Thoughtful Meditation on AddictionThe North Carolina rapper explores the perils of addiction from multiple angles, to emotionally powerful results.
  24. A Perfect Circle Goes Soft and Heavy on Eat the ElephantAn album fit for people, sheep, and sheeple alike.
  25. We’ll Revisit Beyoncé’s Coachella Performance for the Rest of Our LivesJust seconds in, it was apparent she was playing for keeps.
  26. Nicki Minaj Clears the Air on ‘Barbie Tingz’ and ‘Chun Li’And both tracks are certified bangers.
  27. Drake Has Trained His Sights on Wokeness“Nice for What” is an exceptional act of image reform.
  28. Cardi B’s Invasion of Privacy Cements Her Star StatusIt’s a collection of airtight strip-club bangers and heavier emotional numbers.
  29. song review
    Cardi B’s Album Intro, ‘Get Up 10’ Is Bronx Rap Poetry at Its FinestInvasion of Privacy opens with a blunt, brazen, and beautiful manifesto.
  30. The Weeknd’s My Dear Melancholy Is a Jarring Breakup AlbumAbel Tesfaye has returned, slightly, to the guts and grit that built him.
  31. radio vulture
    The Weeknd’s ‘Wasted Times’ Does Drake Better Than Drake CanHow long until the Weeknd replaces Drake entirely?
  32. Kacey Musgraves’s Golden Hour Is 2018’s Country Album to BeatHer third album makes any objections about her style and image now seem embarrassing.
  33. Jack White and Julian Casablancas Show Their Age on New AlbumsJack White sounds tired of being Jack White, while Julian Casablancas is still sorting out the many things he can be.
  34. Snoop Dogg’s New Gospel Album, Bible of Love, Is Surprisingly GreatIt’s a warm, wise survey of gospel music’s past, present, and possible future that works better than it should.
  35. Logic’s Bobby Tarantino II Forgets What’s Great About LogicThe newly self-conscious rapper’s latest mixtape finds him forcing himself out of his wheelhouse, with uneven results.
  36. music review
    Music Review: A Double Dose of Pierre Boulez’s RéponsThe composer’s electronic manifesto returns.
  37. On LCD Soundsystem’s American Dream, James Murphy Rediscovers His PurposeThe front man has always been obsessed with how he lived his life, but he had to take a couple years away from music to clarify his perspective.
  38. Lorde’s Melodrama Satirizes and Exemplifies a Great Breakup RecordThe album is split between heartbroken displeasure and moments of clarity.
  39. radio vulture
    Album Review: Brad Paisley’s Love and War Is a Welcome Return to FormOn record, Brad Paisley makes a quiet life sound deeply rewarding.
  40. radio vulture
    Kendrick Lamar’s DAMN. Is a Brilliant, Anxious Reflection of the WorldIt’s been two years since Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp a Butterfly, and we are not alright.
  41. The Chainsmokers’ Nostalgia for the Recent Past Is Not EnoughThis is music tailor-made for being sad about the recent past.
  42. Blood Orange’s Freetown Sound Is the ‘Passion’ of Black America Protest music you can dance and cry to. 
  43. music review
    Boomer Rock Icons Are Back, and Their Albums Aren’t BadPaul McCartney, Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton, Neil Young, and Paul Simon are all releasing new material.
  44. radio vulture
    Abebe: On Coexist, the xx Stay Intimate by Getting GranderOn their sophomore album, the British trio face an audience that’s built up a tolerance for their sound.
  45. radio vulture
    Music Review: Dan Deacon and Matthew Dear Our music critic reviews Deacon’s America and Dear’s Beams.
  46. radio vulture
    Music Review: Abebe on Write Me Back and the Multifaceted R. KellyRobert Kelly — Chicago institution, “Pied Piper of R&B,” formally acquitted of ignoble charges nobody’s forgotten — has a new record out this week.
  47. radio vulture
    Lovable, Talented Bore Jack White Stretches Out on His New Solo AlbumWas a White Stripes breakup the best thing that could have happened to this songwriter?
  48. common people
    Pulp’s Reunion Show Is the Greatest Revival in MidtownThe enduring appeal of Jarvis Cocker’s “slightly shady form of glamour.”
  49. radio vulture
    The Indie-Folk Crossover: Commercials for Our Selves in a Hunger Games WorldTwilight’s emo-gothic glitter has been replaced by a hardscrabble, triumphal, suspender-friendly sound.
  50. music review
    Music Review: The Apathy and Ecstasy of Madonna’s MDNAMadge gets lost on her latest return to the dance floor.
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