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Genre Studies

Pop Music Isn’t Bad; Boring Music is Bad, and Billie Eilish’s Music Ain’t Bad

Last month, a close friend who keeps an ear much closer to the pop ground asked me to listen to Billie Eilish’s new album. During a train ride, I perused the rotting garden that is the pop scene, and found… Continue Reading →

Take the Money, Run, and Remember: A Brief Memory of the French Punk Scene

Growing up, I had no knowledge whatsoever of a ‘french punk scene’. The word punk brought up some vague Sex Pistols image at most, and it ended there for years to come. Then my mother put on a Metal Urbain… Continue Reading →

Land of the Free and The Shape of Jazz to Come

Ornette Coleman was a seminal voice for the modern jazz revolution. Coleman’s focus is more on melody – simultaneous improvisations laid down by multiple instruments.  Ornette’s approach is perhaps aided by his choice to not include piano, without which there is no distinct harmonic enforcement.

Charles Mingus on Impulse! Records

I entered a jazz program at a small local college without having any sense of the breadth of styles and the personalities that shaped the art form.  As a bass player, I felt inclined towards Mingus at first.  But the… Continue Reading →

Hurts So Good: A New Crop Of Female Singer-Songwriters Lack The Clarity Of Lived-In Depression

Yesterday I was minding my own business and I happened to hear yet another melancholy song by a young female singer songwriter named Phoebe Something. The lyrics danced around the morbidity of depression: “Jesus Christ I’m so blue all the… Continue Reading →

The Kurt Factor: Jealous Of The Birds & Courtney Barnett

2018 is a proving to be a stellar year for female artists and musicians. I am particularly moved by two of the innovative ladies with stellar records out this year, one whom is an Australian you may know well and… Continue Reading →

Nostalgia Battle! Olden Yolk – S/T vs. Post Animal – When I Think Of You In A Castle

The crew at Niche Appeal has an ear firmly planted to the ground of music’s past, but to many of us (myself included), certain new bands roll out a rainbow of amorphous Nostalgia Sounds that take us to a place… Continue Reading →

Dissing Ryan Adams: An Emerging Songwriting Genre

Ever since his band Whiskeytown reared its twangy head in 1994, Ryan Adams, the short, mouthy, Edward-Scissorhands-haired “alt-country” wunderkind has been attracting a wide array of hate from all angles. Like Liam Gallagher with more pedal steel, Mr. Adams has… Continue Reading →

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