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SMI New Music Preview: Rick Ross ‘Mastermind’ (Full Album – You Tube)

by Billy Valentine You want a taste of Mastermind? Here you go: Bugatti stacks, Dom Perignon VIP booths, Benzo-to-Enzo come-ups and BitchesCokeMurderEngineRev. This should sound familiar to you by now because Big Boss Ross has been doing the gaudy Gotti shtick for years. He’s tapped into the lavish mentality, practically bottled the jet-set essence and […]

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SMI New Music Preview: Kylie Minogue – Kiss Me Once

by Alicia Kamenick Sparkly Australian pop sprite Kylie Minogue knows her audience, and always brings a decent collection of shiny dance pop. Collaborating with the ubiquitous Sia and Pharrell Williams (among others), her new album Kiss Me Once mostly delivers the goods. Opener “Into the Blue” is a highlight, as is the Pharrell-produced “I Was […]

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SMI New Music Preview: Beck – Morning Phase

By Christine Mitchell From the opening strains of “Cycle,” Beck’s Morning Phase (Capitol) plays out as its titular title indicates. Beginning with the sounds the sun’s rays might make as they break over the horizon, the album captures those earliest moments of the day that come after a long night of darkness, both literal and […]

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SMI New Music Preview: Lea Michele’s ‘Louder’

by Katrina Charles When Glee began airing on Fox in 2009, everyone was stunned by the powerful vocals of fairly unknown actress Lea Michele. With a knack for melding theatrics and popular music, she was a key element in the show’s success and the main reason their version of “Don’t Stop Believing” was on repeat […]

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SMI NEW MUSIC PREVIEW: BROKEN BELLS ‘AFTER THE DISCO’

by Jessica Kaminski 4 years after their debut album, power-duo Broken Bells have released a sophomore album that delivers beautifully produced electro-pop songs. The album’s title ‘After the Disco‘ alludes to the post-party crash that follows an epic night of celebration. But the title also foreshadows the seeming influences of the post-disco era. At first blush, the […]

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SMI New Music Preview: Drive-by Truckers ‘English Oceans’

By Jessica Kaminski English Oceans is the twelfth installment in the prolific Drive-By Truckers’ catalog and is a straightforward country rock album.  The band is solid and in sync, the songs have sturdy arrangements, but the album doesn’t pull any punches. While the lyrics teeter on the verge of being overly elementary, they are poetic […]

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SMI New Music Preview: ScHoolboy Q ‘Oxymoron’

By Billy Valentine Here comes another West Coast banger. That’s right, ScHoolboy Q — Los Angeles native and bucket hat aficionado — recently released Oxymoron, his third studio LP. And, it’s brimming with gangster grit and raw street-wise know-how. No surprise there, really. But what is surprising is why it took so long to finally […]

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SMI New Music Preview: Young The Giant ‘Mind Over Matter’

by Jessica Kaminski When a label touts an album as “highly anticipated” I am always a little skeptical, as was the case with Young The Giant’s sophomore album Mind Over Matter. “Highly anticipated” is almost as disingenuous as “hardest working band in *fill in the genre*. Regardless of their label’s claims of anticipation, Young The […]

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SMI New Music Preview: Dum Dum Girls ‘Too True’

by Christine Mitchell I’m not sure whether it’s serendipitous or not, but I’ve been pawing through Martin Aston’s comprehensive label history ‘Facing The Other Way: The story of 4AD’ . . . and then the Dum Dum Girls’ third album, ‘Too True’ (Sub Pop) materializes and begs me for attention. I can’t help but look at the cover […]

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SMI NEW MUSIC PREVIEW: AAN ‘AMOR AD NAUSEUM’

by Ian Cunningham Portland-natives Aan have an aversion to the cliché-soaked radio hits of today. As the album title would suggest, there is such a thing as too much pleasantry. Too much pandering for approval through accessibility. That’s not to say that their music is unapproachable; its foundation still lies in the orthodox formulas of rock. But […]

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SMI New Music Preview: Bruce Springsteen has ‘High Hopes’ in 2014

by Alicia Kamenick The last time Bruce Springsteen released an album hot on the heels of a world tour, we got Working On a Dream, which was … well, a mixed bag, to be generous.  So when Bruce announced a new album last fall as the Wrecking Ball tour was winding down, there was a dose […]

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Time on my Turntable 2013

Guest SMI contributor, musician and vinyl audiophile extraordinaire, John Roth  shares some of his favorite stax o’ wax of 2013.  More of some of our favorite music from 2013 coming next week… There is nothing like listening to well crafted, well produced music by brilliant artists on 186 gram vinyl. God help me, I do love it so […]

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