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2012 Stories by Rob van Alstyne

Archives: 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009
  • How to Dress Well

    published December 12, 2012

    It's a good time to be in the murky bedroom-R&B business. With introspective and hazy recordings from the likes of Frank Ocean and the Weeknd... More >>

  • Sufjan Stevens

    published December 12, 2012

    Sufjan Stevens will never be faulted for lacking oddball ambition. After a series of ornate orchestral folk-rock albums made him indie-famous in... More >>

  • Dan Mariska 7-inch release

    published December 5, 2012

    Having kicked off the year by issuing one of the local scene's most promising full-length debuts in the form of It's All OK, 22-year-old... More >>

  • Patrick Watson

    published November 28, 2012

    Patrick Watson's music first gained notoriety via a series of elegant chamber pop records, notably 2009's Polaris Music Prize-nominated Wooden... More >>

  • The Tragically Hip

    published November 28, 2012

    Longtime stars in their native Canada, the Tragically Hip have never made the leap beyond large rock clubs here in the States, despite repeated... More >>

  • Cold Specks

    published November 28, 2012

    The musical project of songstress Al Spx, a 23-year-old Canadian transplant currently burning up the U.K.'s indie scene, Cold Specks' debut album,... More >>

  • Rogue Valley vinyl release show

    published November 21, 2012

    Now 18 months removed from releasing four full-length seasonal-themed albums in a year, locally beloved folk-pop act Rogue Valley revisit the... More >>

  • The Fresh & Onlys

    published November 14, 2012

    Those rock fans pining for a return to the Reagan-era days when shadowy jangle-rock bands from overseas like Echo & the Bunnymen and the Church... More >>

  • Aimee Mann

    published November 14, 2012

    Even Aimee Mann's peppiest songs are infused with a certain world-weary grittiness thanks to her sad-eyed alto and caustic lyricism, but her last... More >>

  • Field Report

    published November 14, 2012

    Formerly the one dude from Eau Claire's DeYarmond Edison not to go on to a critically acclaimed music career, Chris Porterfield is playing... More >>

  • RNDM

    published November 14, 2012

    Critically lauded singer-songwriter Joseph Arthur has spent the last six or so years of his lengthy career swinging between immaculate... More >>

  • Villa go for gentle-rock

    published November 14, 2012

    Instead of rocking socks off, Villa would rather light a fire to warm listeners' feet. The local quintet's full-length debut, Plains, Fog,... More >>

  • The Helio Sequence

    published November 7, 2012

    Negotiations, the long-awaited fourth album from Portland duo the Helio Sequence, is a slinky and shadowy record, ultimately more... More >>

  • Milo Greene

    published October 31, 2012

    Given the runaway success that greeted Local Natives' debut album a few years back, it was inevitable that a second wave of indie acts featuring... More >>

  • Story of the Sea change things up

    published November 7, 2012

    Instead of carving out a functional niche and staying there, Story of the Sea believe in the power of reinvention and renewal. "The... More >>

  • Benjamin Gibbard

    published October 31, 2012

    Gossip mongers hoping that Death Cab for Cutie frontman Ben Gibbard's debut solo album, Former Lives, would delve into his recent split... More >>

  • Passion Pit

    published October 24, 2012

    For every person falling hard for Passion Pit's sugar-sweet 2009 debut, Manners, there seemed to be an equally impassioned naysayer driven... More >>

  • Morrissey

    published October 24, 2012

    Curmudgeonly crooner Morrissey mastered the art of melodic melancholy ages ago — right around the time of the Smiths' 1986 classic The... More >>

  • The Hush Sound

    published October 24, 2012

    Weirdly lumped in with the emo-loving teen scene by dint of their signing to Fueled by Ramen records, Illinois outfit the Hush Sound were far from... More >>

  • Sea Wolf

    published October 24, 2012

    Given Alex Church's icy, understated tenor and penchant for gentle arpeggios, it's easy to label him and his revolving-band project Sea Wolf as... More >>

  • Sun Airway

    published October 24, 2012

    Philadelphia's Sun Airway set Coldplay-reminiscent crooning atop decidedly more adventurous electronic song structures to fine effect on their... More >>

  • Are You There? embraces Minnesota

    published October 31, 2012

    St. Louis Park native Peter Himmelman never turned his back on his birthplace. After a start in the '80s Twin Cities scene fronting Sussman... More >>

  • San Cisco

    published October 17, 2012

    The video for San Cisco's taut boy/girl disco-rock ditty "Awkward" finds the Australian foursome so irresistibly cutesy in sound and look that... More >>

  • Menomena

    published October 17, 2012

    Portland's Menomena are the rare experimental pop provocateurs whose tunes boast an insistent rhythmic pulse. Originally a trio of... More >>

  • Dinosaur Jr.

    published October 17, 2012

    Now three albums into their unlikely second act, indie icons Dinosaur Jr. continue to blast eardrums and blow out speakers with a fury matching... More >>

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