Black Books: Black Books [Album Review]

Black Books Black Books Self-Released [2013] Fire Note Says: This may be Black Books’ first album, but they’ve clearly done their homework. Album Review: The biographical blurb on Black Books’ BandCamp page notes that the band has been “playing music together since forever.” It shows. Their debut album is by no means a classic, but … Read more

Wymond Miles: Cut Yourself Free [Album Review]

Wymond Miles Cut Yourself Free Sacred Bones Records [2013] Fire Note Says: The Fresh & Onlys guitarist gets dark on his second solo album. Album Review: Anyone expecting the kind of garage psych-pop his main band deals in would have been sadly disappointed with Wymond Miles’ debut offering last year. Under The Pale Moon was … Read more

Mirror Travel: Mexico [Album Review]

Mirror Travel Mexico Modern Outsider [2013] Fire Note Says: Mirror Travel walk in the desert with the dream-scuzz of debut Mexico. Album Review: Austin, Texas’ Mirror Travel is a bit of a strange bird. This could be considered funny since the group used to go by Follow That Bird. Tiffanie Lanmon, Paul Brinkley, and Lauren … Read more

Cults: Static [Album Review]

Cults Static Columbia Records [2013] Fire Note Says: With their sophomore album, Cults put a pop/rock spin on their west-coast sound. Album Review: With their sophomore album, Cults put a pop/rock, electronic spin on their west coast sound. Most of the songs feature female vocalist Madeline Follin, while other tracks are accompanied by Brian Oblivion, … Read more

Red Fang: Whales And Leeches [Album Review]

Red Fang Whales And Leeches Relapse Records [2013] Fire Note Says: Red Fang’s third album fails to surprise nor does it completely disappoint either. Album Review: When I first heard “Prehistoric Dog” off Portland stoner-metal band Red Fang’s debut album I was more or less convinced that these guys were the future of metal – … Read more

Barton Carroll: Avery County, I’m Bound To You [Album Review]

Barton Carroll Avery County, I’m Bound To You Skybucket Records [2013] Fire Note Says: Barton Carroll returns with another album of solid songwriting and modern folk that should catch your attention. Album Review: If you remember the little blog we used to have, you may be familiar with singer/songwriter Barton Carroll. His last record, Together … Read more

Heavenly Beat: Prominence [Album Review]

Heavenly Beat Prominence Captured Tracks [2013] Fire Note Says: Heavenly Beat’s sophomore effort is a smooth groovy album. Album Review: Heavenly Beat returns with their second album in as many years. The mastermind behind Heavenly Beat is Texas’ John Pena, who plays with a few studio artists but is primarily responsible for everything you hear … Read more

Mike Donovan: WOT [Album Review]

Mike Donovan WOT Drag City Records [2013] Fire Note Says: A fine solo debut from Mike Donovan formerly of Sic Alps. Album Review: With the demise of Sic Alps earlier this year, it was only a matter of time before Mike Donovan launched his solo career. While the Sic Alps specialized in 60’s influenced guitar/garage … Read more

Pearl Jam: Lightning Bolt [Album Review]

Pearl Jam Lightning Bolt Monkeywrench/Universal Records [2013] Fire Note Says: This “Lightning Bolt” still doesn’t strike twice in the same place. Album Review: If you were to take your cues from so-called “classic rock” radio (remember radio?), you’d be convinced that Pearl Jam did all its best work on the 1991 debut, Ten, and a … Read more

The Avett Brothers: Magpie And The Dandelion [Album Review]

The Avett Brothers Magpie And The Dandelion American Recordings [2013] Fire Note Says: The Avett Brothers return quickly with their eighth record Magpie And The Dandelion. Album Review: I really liked last year’s The Carpenter from The Avett Brothers. It was weighty, mature, warm radio styled and its songwriting was completely thought stirring. Some critics … Read more

Radkey: Devil Fruit EP [Album Review]

Radkey Devil Fruit EP Little Man Records [2013] Fire Note Says: Radkey’s Devil Fruit EP shows promise for the future. Album Review: Radkey is a three-piece punk band from St. Joseph, Missouri. They are three brothers (Dee, Isaiah, and Solomon) who play well together. This in and of itself is quite the accomplishment, as parents … Read more