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BIG NIGHT FOR BANDIER, SONY/ATV AT BMI POP AWARDS
Downright iconic, actually. (5/15a)
ROLLING STONE'S YOUTUBE PROBLEM
Modern math. (5/21a)
PRIMARY WAVE LANDS WHITNEY HOUSTON
Holograms and musicals ahead. (5/20a)
SPOTIFY U.S. TOP 25: TYLER AFTERSHOCKS
This one's got legs...four, to be exact. (5/22a)
BREVITY IS THE SEOUL OF WIT
The shit writes itself, but not in Korean. (5/15a)
THE DIVA PLAN
How pop stars from the pre-streaming era are finding a new groove.
RAINMAKERS RETURN
More of the folks who are making biz history now.
THE FUTURE OF ROCK & ROLL IS...
Hang on, we just need to throw this TV out the window.
AFTER COUNTRY TRAP
Is reggaeton death metal far behind?
Critics' Choice
LISTEN BEFORE CASTING YOUR BALLOT: ALABAMA SHAKES, SOUND & COLOR
10/28/15

Alabama Shakes, Sound & Color (ATO/Caroline): This alterna-soul outfit’s follow-up to Boys & Girls finds them venturing into new sonic territory—and crafting new settings for Brittany Howard’s frankly astonishing pipes. Howard, who recently joined idol Sam Moore for a duet at the Kennedy Center and sang with Mavis Staples on the premiere of Colbert’s Late Show, is a force of nature and has rightly been the primary recipient of the accolades, but the band really steps up here as well, with sharper grooves, peerless dynamics, incisive riffs and sprays of jazzy texture. While the troupe’s reach is wide—from hushed soul (“Guess Who,” the title track) to raucous, punked-out stroll (“The Greatest”)—it never exceeds their grasp. Sound is a truly cohesive statement from a band in full flower. For its artistry, grit and innovative approach to musical tradition, this set deserves a serious listen—at high volume.