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The best music of 2017: The ballots

In a year as full of outstanding music as 2017, best-of voting can be a difficult task, and the wide variety of nominees across this year’s ballots reflects just how many great albums there were to choose from. After giving our Best Albums Of 2017 a read, dig into the individual lists our writers submitted of their…

The A.V. Club’s 20 best albums of 2017

There was too much to listen to in 2017—not just albums, of which there were once again thousands, a barrage of releases from major-label veterans and SoundCloud up-and-comers alike, all vying for your attention. There was just too much of everything: a persistent, buzzing storm of push notifications and free-floating…

Freddie Gibbs, Mastodon, Pile, and more in this week’s music reviews

No two Pile albums are alike, and that’s what makes hitting play on a new one so exciting. Those first few notes open a door to a new world, one that could only be created by frontman Rick Maguire. With Pile, Maguire is fearless, willing to take country and bluegrass riffs and twist them around noisy post-hardcore and…

Craig Finn, Mount Eerie, Pallbearer, and more in this week’s music reviews

Hold Steady frontman Craig Finn is a deeply empathetic songwriter. That’s not always obvious, since his characters tend to be working through (self-imposed) streaks of bad luck or turbulent emotional spirals. However, even his protagonists with shifting moral compasses tend to be likable, mainly because Finn is adept…

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A secret Shins show, the new Edgar Wright movie, and everything else The A.V. Club saw at SXSW

Even when South By Southwest was solely music-focused, there was no way to catch everything of import, and as it’s grown its film and tech festivals, coverage has only gotten harder. We sent a few A.V. Club staffers this year to cover music, film, and tech, so you can dive in and catch a week’s work of experiences…

Spoon, Real Estate, and Sorority Noise in this week’s music reviews

Explaining Spoon’s rise to fame is easy if you break down its songwriting. On first listen—or the 10th, really—its material sounds simplistic because it’s exactly that. Learning Spoon songs isn’t difficult, but replicating Spoon songs is hard. The subtleties and delivery, like Britt Daniel’s hoarse scratch on the tail…