Single Review: Sinai Vessel – “Swimming”

North Carolina rock trio Sinai Vessel are no stranger to doing a lot with a little. Last year’s excellent and understated Ground Aswim feels like a master class in the use of sparse instrumentation and minimal production to achieve an impactful sound. Track after track is carefully composed and executed beautifully, culminating in what is undoubtedly one of the best indie rock records of 2020. Great news: there’s more. 

Lobster Review: Shakey Graves — Roll the Bones X

By Ethan Bloomfield, Staff Writer
[Dualtone Music Group; 2021]
Rating: 8/10
Key tracks: “Unlucky Skin”, “Business Lunch”, “To Cure What Ails”
The lobster review is meant to bring albums from the past forward to celebrate their influence, their merit and their lasting relevance in music. That being said, how is an album released in April of 2021 qualifying? Roll the Bones X is the product of 10 years of Americana singer Shakey Graves’ first record, Roll the Bones, released for the first time on all streaming platforms and loaded with new content from the last decade. 

Brick City Records to release signed artists’ EPs, music videos

By Ethan Bloomfield, Staff Writer
Ohio University’s own Brick City Records will begin to release signed artists’ music videos for their singles and EPs recorded with BCR since late summer, according to the label. The releases start in early April and showcase four artists.

Album Review: toe – DOKU-EN-KAI

By Ethan Bloomfield, Staff Writer
[Topshelf; 2021]
Rating: 8.5/10
Math rock is, to many casual music fans, a mysterious genre. Reaching all the way back to the likes of King Crimson and Spiderland-era Slint, the genre has found itself nestled into many bands across borders and oceans and repackaged for style after style. The Illinois emo band American Football popularized math rock in the mainstream with its 1999 hit single “Never Meant” and has achieved both cult and meme status, acting as both a face of the genre for many that know it casually and as a sort of butt of music circle jokes. Looking deeper, though, the math rock genre has much more to offer than this. 

Album Review: Tigers Jaw – I Won’t Care How You Remember Me

By Ethan Bloomfield, Staff Writer
[Hopeless; 2021]
Rating: 7/10
Key tracks: “I Won’t Care How You Remember Me”, “Lemon Mouth”, “Anniversary”
In the past year, Indie rock and DIY music in general have taken a major hit, and much of the grassroots music industry appears to be in dire straits. Nevertheless, as this year-long catastrophe rages on, independent music has found a way to shine through. Whether that be Sinai Vessel’s excellent Ground Aswim last Halloween or The Mountain Goats’ lo-fi quarantine tape, Songs for Pierre Chuvin––the stripped-back, quarantine-inspired album is a growing musical trend––musicians have found a way to get their message to people regardless of restrictions and problems associated with COVID. 

Single Review: beach girl – “I Do It Like That… You Love It?”

Dance music usually has one goal in mind, and it’s in the name. But can dance music be chilled out? Not many years ago, raves and festivals were — and likely still are — eager to book artists who make rowdy, loud and abrasive dubstep. There was simply nothing else like it.

Album Review: For Your Health – In Spite Of

By Ethan Bloomfield, Staff Writer
[Twelve Gauge; 2021]
Rating: 7.5/10
Key tracks: Birthday Candles in the Effigy, The Day of Black Sun, You’re so United Ninety-Three, We’re so Flight One Eighty
For Your Health is not your grandma’s punk band. While Green Day is still releasing the same punk-flavored, radio friendly pop rock, albeit more competently than their last…. few records, this Columbus, Ohio based punk outfit is anything but easygoing radio fare. FYH’s new debut LP, In Spite Of, provides a fast paced, aggressive and enjoyable action packed experience, but it’s far too short to really make its mark. 

Boston shoegaze outfit Trash Sun releases “Besides”

By Ethan Bloomfield, Staff Writer Boston, Massachusetts, rock band Trash Sun self-released their seventh full length project since 2019, titled Besides. Read more: Middle Kids Release New Track “Stacking Chairs” The fully self-written and self-recorded album showcases a slowed down sound, moving away from their previous noisy shoegaze timbres to achieve a “thinner, stripped back,…

Album Review: Mogwai – As the Love Continues

Post-rock is a genre dominated by textures. Soundscapes are crafted, layering electronic instrumentals and guitars over complex percussion to form a musical experience and casting aside the usual structure of the rock genre. Scottish band Mogwai are no exception to this. Twenty-four years after the exceptional Young Team LP, the band is still releasing music, and their new studio album, As the Love Continues, does a delightful, though safe, job delivering the shimmery haze and atmosphere that post-rock employs.

Because the Internet: Chris††† – social justice whatever

By Ethan Bloomfield, Contributor
Does anyone remember the “The Ultimate Showdown” video? The Ultimate Showdown of Ultimate Destiny, of course. “Old Godzilla was hoppin’ around / Tokyo City like a big playground”? This 2006 gem captures a snapshot of the attitudes of pop culture in that year.

Group Feature: ACRN’s Top 10 Disappointing Albums of 2020

10. Machinedrum — A View of U, [Ninja Tune; 2020]By Lane Moore, Reviews Editor Machinedrum’s A View of U is perhaps the greatest illusion of the millennium. It’s pretty tough to catch, but if you peer into the soul of this album––or make it past track three or four––you will find that A View of…