Big Ears 2014: John Cale
Published 3/26/2014 at 3:24 p.m. 0 comments
John Cale will forever be best known as a member of the Velvet Underground, the band he formed with Lou Reed in 1965. While Reed was clearly the band’s leader and guiding force, it was Cale, more than anybody, who ...
Big Ears 2014: Stephen O’Malley
Published 3/26/2014 at 3:23 p.m. 0 comments
Stephen O’Malley is best known for his band Sunn O))), a drone-summoning duo that slows down the elements of doom metal to an extreme ebb. Though their recent output has included orchestral and choral music and other grand gestures, the ...
That's It! Preservation Hall Jazz Band Balances Tradition and Evolution
Published 3/19/2014 at 11:06 a.m. 0 comments
Last summer, the renowned New Orleans ensemble Preservation Hall Jazz Band released 11 tracks of original material on the Sony/Legacy album That’s It!—the first album of all-original material in the band’s inveterate 50-year history.
1990s Rock and Soul Ensemble Gran Torino Reunites for One Show—and Maybe More
Published 3/12/2014 at 10:24 a.m. 0 comments
If Gran Torino wasn’t the biggest name to emerge from Knoxville as a full-time touring act, it certainly had the biggest roster. The nine-piece horn-driven outfit came together in 1995—a combination of ex-Bearden High School buddies and University of Tennessee ...
Béla Fleck and Abigail Washburn Explore New Frontiers Together
Published 3/5/2014 at 10:06 a.m. 0 comments
Banjoist Béla Fleck has created more music in more contexts than most any instrumentalist in recent memory: redefining bluegrass with the New Grass Revival; breaking new ground in fusion with the Flecktones; writing classical pieces for symphony; playing jazz, Indian, ...
St. Paul and the Broken Bones Pick Up Where Soul Music Left Off in the 1970s
Published 2/19/2014 at 10:58 a.m. 0 comments
Paul Janeway's voice is reminiscent of some of the soul greats, particularly Southern ones like Otis Redding and Wilson Pickett.
After 14 Years, Sebadoh Returns, Sounding Much the Same—and That's a Good Thing
Published 2/12/2014 at 10:27 a.m. 0 comments
Defend Yourself isn’t exactly a change of pace for the trio of Lou Barlow, Jason Lowenstein, and Bob D’Amico. In fact, it’s almost freakish how much the first Sebadoh album in 14 years sounds exactly like Sebadoh 20 years ago—it ...
Peter Walker Continues His Guitar Explorations After a 40-Year Hiatus
Published 2/5/2014 at 10:45 a.m. 0 comments
Born in Boston, Walker played in the city’s folk club/coffeehouse scene before bouncing around and performing in New York, Spain, North Africa, Dallas, San Francisco, Mexico, and Detroit, finally settling down in Woodstock, N.Y. His debut album, Rainy Day Raga ...
Folk Revival: The Cumberland Trio’s 50-Year Saga as One of the Folk Era’s Great Forgotten Bands Finally Comes to an End
Published 1/29/2014 at 3:00 p.m. 1 comment
In the summer of 1964, the University of Tennessee folk group the Cumberland Trio felt like they were on the verge of a huge breakthrough, and with good reason. But it took almost 50 years for the band to finally ...
Chelsea Wolfe's Atmospheric Metal/Electronica is Open to Interpretation
Published 1/29/2014 at 10:36 a.m. 0 comments
Chelsea Wolfe doesn’t particularly like to explain her songs. The 30-year-old California musician understands the impulse to ask what a song means, but she feels that anybody else’s interpretation is just as valid as hers.
Singer/Songwriter Thao Nguyen Finds Inspiration in a California Women’s Prison
Published 1/23/2014 at 9:34 a.m. 0 comments
A little more than a year ago, Nguyen began visiting the prison with the California Coalition for Women Prisoners. The people she met there have had a profound effect on both Nguyen’s life and her latest album, We the Common ...
Allman Brothers Guitarist Derek Trucks Makes Time for His Other Band
Published 1/15/2014 at 10:21 a.m. 0 comments
Longtime fans of slide-guitar wunderkind Derek Trucks are doubtless dismayed to hear that 2014 will be his last with Southern rock icons the Allman Brothers Band. But listeners can take heart in the fact that Trucks will still be active, ...
The Del McCoury Band Stretches Bluegrass Tradition Without Breaking It
Published 1/8/2014 at 10:06 a.m. 0 comments
The Del McCoury Band’s reputation as one of the last original bluegrass bands—and as a symbol of its hardcore side—is well-earned. But they’ve subtly stretched the boundaries of the bluegrass repertory, recording songs by Tom Petty, Robert Cray, Jerry Lee ...
Knox Carols: A Couple of Local (If Not Quite Classic) Christmas Recordings From Days Gone By
Published 12/18/2013 at 3:00 p.m. 1 comment
A couple of local (if not quite classic) Christmas recordings from days gone by.
A Mixed-Up Metro Pulse Christmas Mixtape
Published 12/18/2013 at 3:00 p.m. 0 comments
This collection of sounds spanning the later half of the 20th century has no predetermined theme or flow; it’s a collection of music that has been curated by me and reflects my personal taste toward holiday music. I have never ...