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Notes from Mr. Sandman: Proh Mic

Introducing ‘Notes from Mr. Sandman‘ – a column slapping a spotlight on lyricists overlooked, under appreciated, or just plain criminally slept on. Or like a man named Nas once said, “I never sleep, cause sleep is the cousin of death.” […]

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RIFF’D: Polica’s ‘United Crushers’

Polica‘s third studio album United Crushers has the Minneapolis-based band exploring a multitude of perspectives. Channy Leaneagh has said that this was her opportunity, inspired by the birth of her second child, to step outside herself and […]

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RIFF’d: Animal Collective’s ‘Painting With’

Animal Collective’s tenth album Painting With draws heavily on Dadaism, Cubism, and various other experimental painting styles as far as lyricism goes, beating around the bush, giving impressions instead of statements. Conversely, it draws very […]

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Listing: 5 Explosive Declarations from Saul Williams’ ‘MartyrLoserKing’

For as long as Saul Williams has been making music, he’s never shied away from controversy. Since day one it’s been about the people, and putting a spotlight on the injustices that have plagued them. […]

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Op-Ed: The Intoxicating Irrelevance of PSY’s Return to Viral Form, ‘Daddy’

The man behind the “Gangnam Style” juggernaut is back. However, he’s been “back” before — there was 2013’s “Gentleman” and 2014’s Snoop Dogg-featuring “Hangover,” which have netted roughly 900 and 230-million and YouTube views. And that’s nothing compared […]

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Artist Behind One of the Most Sampled Tracks of All Time Finally Gets Paid (Sort Of)

It may be about nine years too late and millions of dollars too short, but it’s something. One of the most sampled drum grooves of all time, the “Amen Break” from The Winstons’ “Amen Brother,” finally […]

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Streetside: Ibeyi Channel Fall Equinox at Chicago’s Thalia Hall; September 23

Coinciding with a crisp fall equinox, French-Cuban twin sisters Ibeyi made an appearance at Thalia Hall in Chicago on Wednesday (September 23) to celebrate their heavily lauded self-titled album, the autumnal mystique a perfect compliment to their un-pinnable fusion of everything from […]

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RIFF’d: Tame Impala’s ‘Currents’

Personal growth can be difficult especially in a place as fickle as the music industry. Everyone wants the same old thing, and to venture beyond the norm is, in most instances, a death sentence. But […]

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Streetside: Death Grips at Seattle’s Showbox; June 19, 2015

I finally saw Death Grips live. The noise-rap innovators kicked off their ‘posthumous’ world tour in my hometown of Seattle. Throngs of underage white kids lined up around the block the entire day of the show, […]

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RIFF’d: Giorgio Moroder’s ‘Déjà Vu’

Giorgio Moroder is the original Skrillex. Think about it: both of them had previous, notable-but-less-historic careers — Moroder’s in repurposing American bubblegum for Euro audiences, Skrillex in repurposing metal for screamo fans of the Hot […]

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