Everyone's a Critic

We pay up to $25 for CD reviews and up to $100 for concert reviews published in our print edition. Web-only publication pays $10 for CD reviews; $20 for concerts (+$5 for photo).

Evermotion, by Guster

Boston band drops out of college rock

Continuing to chip away at their college rock roots, Guster's Evermotion further obscures the band's acoustic guitar and bongo-backed beginnings. The opener, “Long Night,” provides an overture of sorts, lulling the listener in with dreamy ...

Antemasque provides sonic spark to combustible Belly Up crowd

Former Mars Volta duo strip it down and turn it up

When guitarist and vocalist Teri Gender Bender of Le Butcherettes gets onstage, things get weird, and Sunday night’s opening performance was no exception. With the casual mannerisms of a human-hearted automaton and a fierce stage ...

Noel Gallagher's Chasing Yesterday — to kick its arse

Elder statesman of British rock Noel Gallagher has ignored the speculation of an Oasis reunion to concentrate on making new music rather than backtracking. However, “Riverman,” the opening scene of the cinematographic Chasing Yesterday, is ...

Bouncer-friendly Punch Brothers tuck 'em in at the Observatory

Here’s a phrase that’s probably never been uttered by man: “the banjo player with mystique.” That’s Noam Pikelny in a nutshell. Decked out in a white suit, Pikelny’s deep voice and deadpan banter served as ...

The Zombies come to life at Bar Pink

Tribute show features Sixties-influenced San Diegans

On taking a run at the Zombies, Bart Mendoza (who orchestrated the tribute show) relates, “As a kid, I was intrigued by the way they dressed. Paul Atkinson was my inspiration — I wore a ...

Hozier by Hozier

With a chorus reminiscent of classic Elton John and viral video amassing more than 100 million YouTube views, “Take Me to Church” quickly placed Irish singer-songwriter Andrew Hozier-Byrne (aka Hozier) on America’s musical pulpit. While ...

Immediate masterpiece at San Diego Symphony

Shostakovich's Tenth Symphony was an instant classic at release

"There is no curse in Elvish, Entish, or the tongues of Men for this treachery." I'm going to switch up that Tolkien quote and say, "There is no sufficient honor in Elvish, Entish, or the ...

Arcade Fired Will Butler has a new Policy

Butler brother's solo debut a whimsical mix of musical styles

On his solo debut, Arcade Fire’s Will Butler attempts to scramble out from the behemoth shadow of his indie-rock super group. But the dreamy rock feeling that flows so freely from his previous band does ...

Blink is back!

Local pop-punk trio packs the house at Soma

San Diego pop-punk band Blink 182 returned to their roots by playing the all-ages Soma last Friday night. Tickets for the 2300-capacity venue sold out in, well, a blink. The buzz surrounding the concert was ...

John Mellencamp's Plain Spoken

That leadoff track adds up everything in its unequal-length verses, the pieces of a life, the happier bits fallen out, rotten pieces in a too-humid jigsaw — and every equation equals no peace. That’s the ...

Greene country

Americana master Jackie Greene entertains a packed Observatory

Fans danced, fans whooped and sang along as Sacramento-based singer-songwriter-multi-instrumentalist Jackie Greene performed for a packed Observatory North Park. With his fingers flying over the neck of his guitar and his voice effortlessly reaching every ...

Loons get loose

Local retro rock-rollers soundtrack your next head-trip

Kicking off the head-trip that is the Loons’ Inside Outside Your Mind, “Siren City” engages with its hypnotic riff and upbeat melody, cruising comfortably detached from the surrounding pandemonium. Snapping at its heels is “Moon ...

Fish party!

Annual celebration of all things Pisces hits high-water mark

Pisces people began circling the Merrow early for birthday-girl Laura Jane Willcock’s annual Fish Party. Ensuring this year’s festivities would hit the high-water mark, Willcock booked three hyperactive rock-and-roll bands to school the multitude of ...

Then Came the Morning by the Lone Bellow

Brooklyn band's new one seeks and finds warmth this frigid winter

“Then came the morning.” Such a simple phrase with such a comfy feel to it. A lightness. The night may have tested their resolve...then came the morning. There's hope in that phrase. It sets the ...

Swervedriver — sneaky good

British shoegaze greats kick off their tour at Casbah

Swervedriver arrived in San Diego for the first date of a tour in support of their new album, I Wasn't Born To Lose You. Absent when they hit the stage was long-time bassist Steve George, ...

Jimmy the Magnificent

Jimmy Eat World frontman Jim Adkins spellbinds Bar Pink with solo acoustic set

Several songs into his solo acoustic set at Bar Pink, Jimmy Eat World singer Jim Adkins let the crowd know how the evening was going to shake out. Vowing to play a mix of brand-new ...

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