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Latest Articles


Behind the Red Curtain

Performance Outlook
On Saturday, four singer/songwriters will perform "in the round" at the North Star. Nothing necessarily unusual about that.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  January 13, 2010


Getting to know Audrey Ryan

We know, we know 
Though she's primarily Boston-based at this point, Audrey Ryan grew up on Mount Desert Island and he's clearly retained some of that rough-and-tumble independence streak.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  January 13, 2010


The Devil's stomp

Lost Cause Desperados are quick on the draw
While the Lost Cause Desperados might be monickered like a bad alt-country band doing Eagles covers, they have managed to create on Desert of Broken Glass , the band's first full-length with bassist Stu Mahan and drummer Brian Higgins, as frenzied a high-plains drifter as you're ever likely to find.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  January 13, 2010


Let's get Russian

A live album for a dead rock singer from Kino Proby
The quick back-story on Kino Proby: Three Mainers take a liking to the Russian band Kino, and its legendary lead singer Viktor Tsoi, who died in a car wreck in 1990 after becoming maybe the single most famous Russian rock star.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  January 06, 2010


Hot, hot heat

New Year's Eve is just a warm-up
Is New Year's back? It seemed to have been taken away from us, by a general and hard-to-pin-down sentiment that it ought to be some kind of family holiday. Fuck that.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  December 30, 2009


Hit the Ground

Portland's (and 6gig's) song of the decade
How do you pick a song of the decade?
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  December 22, 2009

Local luminaries’ picks

A sample of other best songs of the 2000s
I asked a bunch of people who really dig local music to help me make sure I wasn’t leaving any songs out when I was developing my list of the best 10 songs of the 2000s, but then I quickly realized that “best” is about as subjective as things come when you’re talking about songs.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  December 22, 2009


Short-form Portland

The 10 best LPs and EPs of 2009
I can hear the snarky comments already: "What?!? Rustic Overtones put out an album this year and Pfeifle hasn't fallen all over himself naming it #1? The sky is green!" But this isn't 1999. It's 2009. And it isn't all that strange for a phenomenal album to hit Portland's city streets anymore.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  December 16, 2009


The Shapes of things

Pete Kilpatrick's new wintry Sounds
The first song on the Pete Kilpatrick Band's new Shapes and Sounds EP might be called "Dear July," but the five-song work is clearly an ode to winter, to its delicious melancholy and the joys of finding cozy corners in overheated bars or naked bodies under six or seven blankets.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  December 09, 2009


Seven up

The new sounds of Sly-Chi
Because Sly-Chi are so versatile, and can adopt any number of danceable skins, there can be a tendency to read their individual songs in great chunks, like sentences we've read a hundred times.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  December 09, 2009


Airman punk

Running a band and writing music in Afghanistan
Perhaps the clearest sign that Afghanistan is not your father's war comes in the person of Airman First Class Peter Bourgeois, who, while deployed at Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan, has been busy managing the career of his former band, Jodi Explodi.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  December 02, 2009


Ghost stories

For all of the excitement that surrounded Wilco on the Maine State Pier or Sufjan Stevens at Port City Music Hall or the various sold-out Ray LaMontagne shows of the past year, there is no question that last Sunday's Phish show at the Cumberland County Civic Center was the biggest thing to hit our fair city in a very long time.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  December 07, 2009


Soldier's joy

Aaron Lee Marshall's intriguing Now Maybe
For a deconstructionist, the new album from Aaron Lee Marshall presents any number of philosophical difficulties.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  December 02, 2009


Bay State update

A three-song EP for the holidays
Last we left the Bay State, they had turned out the excellent EP Let's Turn This City On , released just over a year ago. In the meantime, they've played the Warped Tour, picked up a booking agent, and worked hard on their live show. Their new three-song EP, released December 11, indicates they may have fallen in love with the live show while they were at it.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  November 24, 2009


Bare bones

The burgeoning Benjamin Burgess
His press materials tell me the young Benjamin Burgess is "uniquely compassionate."
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  November 24, 2009


We have Liftoff (again)

Back, Brightside , and they've got it nailed
If there is a constant that runs through Walt Craven's vocal and lyrical work from 6gig through Lost on Liftoff, it is his role as the impassioned voice of the underdog.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  November 18, 2009


Rear-view mirror

Albums you shouldn't let slip by
After a few days of Indian Summer to remind us of the summer we nearly didn't have, it's timely to shed some warm light on albums released recently that didn't get their proper due.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  November 11, 2009


Days of the New

The orchestral stylings of Rustic Overtones 2.0
When drummer Tony McNaboe delivered the burned copy of Rustic Overtones’ new full-length album, he tucked it inside the packaging of the re-released and re-mastered Long Division.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  November 05, 2009


Tomorrow never dies

 A new full-length from Dave Rowe (and Trio)
For a Halloween party with substantially less gore, check out the newest release from Dave Rowe (and sometimes his Trio), The Music Never Dies .
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  October 28, 2009

Haunted Shipyard

Jodi Explodi deliver ghosts of Halloween past
Guitar World recently gave credit to KISS for turning “party” into a verb.
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  October 28, 2009
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