Noel Gallagher widens sound on ‘Who Built the Moon?’

His younger brother Liam’s new album has been heaped with praise, he turned 50 in May and a recent TV appearance featured a French bandmate playing scissors,

U2’s ‘Songs of Experience’ is a thrilling listen

Like its 2014 predecessor, U2’s “Songs of Experience” is the product of a difficult and drawn-out recording process. Much more so than “Songs of Innocence,” however,

Taylor Swift’s ‘reputation’ is pure pop magic

If you’d stop thinking about her reputation, you’d actually appreciate the musicality of Taylor Swift’s “reputation.” Sure, she named the album that so there will be

Staples in fine form as album chronicles America’s divide

Mavis Staples seems to grow in stature the longer she keeps chronicling America and its contemporary woes. Her constant frame of reference — the civil rights

Billy Bragg delivers the news on ‘Bridges Not Walls’

Billy Bragg is among the most romantic of protest singers but “Bridges Not Walls” is a newscast of dissent, not a love letter. Comprising just six

Turnpike Troubadours back with road-honed polish

The sound of the road permeates the latest release from The Turnpike Troubadours, a hard-charging six-piece band out of Oklahoma that’s been honing its earthy sound for

Robert Plant radiantly returns with rootsy, achy CD

One of the weirder chapters in rock history happened in 2014. That’s when Led Zeppelin won a Grammy for best rock album for a seven-year-old concert recording

Travis Meadows lays it out there with hard-won grit

On two different cuts from his new release, “First Cigarette,” singer-songwriter Travis Meadows acknowledges his voracious appetites. “I’ve been hungry like a stray dog in an

Chris Hillman revives the Byrds’ glorious sound

From the opening beat drop of his first album in more than a decade to the bluegrass-infused cover of a Tom Petty song at the end, Chris

The Killers return with complex and brilliant angst

Don’t be fooled by the title of The Killers’ latest CD. Things aren’t “Wonderful” — much less “Wonderful Wonderful.” This may be the most misleading album title

Larry Campbell & Teresa Williams show rootsy range

Master multi-instrumentalist Larry Campbell is a restless soul, and onstage he alternates from guitar to mandolin to fiddle to pedal steel, sometimes switching during songs. His

A first-class hum and more from Tom Brosseau

A character in a Tom Brosseau song doesn’t just cry — he wipes his eyes with his tie. Such details magnify the beauty in Brosseau’s precise performing

Sisters apply elegant harmonies to eclectic song mix

It’s been said that something mystical distinguishes the harmonies forged by siblings from those of ordinary mortals, and nothing Shelby Lynne and Allison Moorer have sung together

Lukas Nelson delivers soulful, striking songs

First, let’s just get this out there: Lukas Nelson sounds a lot like his famous dad, the red-headed stranger better known as Willie Nelson. Secondly, don’t

Kesha, free at last, shines brighter than ever on ‘Rainbow’

There’s a beautiful way that Kesha delivers the screeching high note near the end of “Praying,” the first single from her first album in five years, “Rainbow.”

Canadian artist Mappe Of charts new, ethereal course

A Canadian artist who spent time busking in Australia and playing heavy metal with his friends has taken his work in an ethereal new direction. The result

Dan Wilson revisits his hits for Adele, John Legend

Dan Wilson helped write that tune? And that one, too? If you still read album credits or liner notes, you may find Wilson’s name attached to some

Alice Cooper (and old mates) go old school on ‘Paranormal’

It’s the middle of summer, but school is back in session as Alice Cooper teaches us how it’s done. In fact, the shock-rock godfather literally goes

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