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Spin

Spin

Founded in 1985, Spin was a monthly music magazine published in New York. The magazine ceased publication in 2012. An online edition continues.

Fela Kuti: Army Arrangement (Celluloid)

Review by Carol Cooper, Spin, May 1985

IF YOU haven't yet heard of Fela Anikulapo Kuti, it isn't because he hasn't been trying to get your attention. ...

John Hiatt: Warming Up To the Ice Age (Geffen)

Review by Glenn O'Brien, Spin, May 1985

HIATT HAS natural brown hair in a normal-citizen style and he's white and wears a regular black suit and a regular white shirt and he ...

Lee 'Scratch' Perry: Lee "Scratch" Perry: Reggae's Mad Scientist

Profile and Interview by Chris Salewicz, Spin, May 1985

WHEN PEOPLE said to Bob Marley that his friend Lee "Scratch" Perry was mad, Marley would reply, "Him not mad, him just Scratch." ...

Slim Harpo: The Best of Slim Harpo (Rhino Records)

Review by Glenn O'Brien, Spin, May 1985

THIS IS actually a 1983 release, but I just bought it a few weeks ago; it took two years to find, so you might want ...

Velvet Underground: The Velvet Underground: VU (Verve/Polygram)

Review by Mick Farren, Spin, May 1985

ONE OF THE great strengths and also the fatal weakness of the Velvet Underground was that they made their greatest statements as a band at ...

Bronski Beat: What Is Bronski Beat?

Profile and Interview by Barney Hoskyns, Spin, May 1985

MEET WHAT IS perhaps the first real gay group in the history of pop. They’re not drag queens, not even sure they want to be ...

The Red Hot Chili Peppers: What's Red Hot and Chili?: Red Hot Chili Peppers

Interview by Glenn O'Brien, Spin, May 1985

The Red Hot Chili Peppers are the greatest rock band in the world. You can tell by watching them perform or you can guess by ...

New Order: Low-Life (Factory)

Review by John Swenson, Spin, June 1985

"I find the popularity thing a bit hard to relate to." — New Order's Peter Hook. ...

The Smiths

Profile by Jon Savage, Spin, June 1985

They aren't teen idols, but have a number-one album thanks mainly to Morrissey, their asexual, charismatic singer-writer. ...

Eek-A-Mouse

Interview by Don Snowden, Spin, August 1985

He's been a musketeer in London and a buccaneer in New Orleans. "People want to see you in costume," explains reggae star Eek-A-Mouse. ...

Sonic Youth

Interview by Byron Coley, Spin, August 1985

Hear a rumbling from Manhattan's Lower East Side? That's Sonic Youth's squall of the wild ...

Billy Bragg: Life's a Riot With Spy vs. Spy (CD Presents)

Review by R.J. Smith, Spin, September 1985

IT'S ABOUT time to write a deconstructionist regulation sheet to be posted in the halls of rockcritdom. I mean, surely it is so when a ...

Scritti Politti: Cupid and Psyche 85 (Warner Brothers)

Review by Richard Gehr, Spin, September 1985

SCRITTI POLITTI (Italian for "political writings") emerged in the late 70s as a hyperanalytic postpunk trio, breaking onto the pop-aesthetic horizon with a series of ...

The Nightingales: Anti-Pop Songbirds: The Nightingales

Report and Interview by Barney Hoskyns, Spin, October 1985

THE NIGHTINGALES ARE seasoned figures on the English independent scene, epitomizing the doggedly patient and uncompromising outsider. Five years old, they still play tiny clubs-above-pubs ...

James: From An English Village: James

Report and Interview by Barney Hoskyns, Spin, October 1985

"WHEN PUNK HAPPENED," says Tim Booth, "there was a big explosion of energy, but eventually the energy was dissipated, and in the last few years ...

The Blasters: Just An American Band

Interview by Don Waller, Spin, October 1985

The Blasters could play any bar in the U.S.A.: these roots were made for rockin'. ...

Various Artists: Best of Studio One, Vol. 2 — Full Up (Heartbeat)

Review by Richard Gehr, Spin, October 1985

THE FURTHER adventures in the multifaceted, knob-twirling career of seminal reggae producer Clement ("Sir Coxsone") Dodd. When we last left our hero, Heartbeat Records' two ...

Womack and Womack: Radio M.U.S.C. Man (Elektra)

Review by John Swenson, Spin, October 1985

THE WOMACK FAMILY is giving the Jacksons a run for their money. Radio M.U.S.C. Man is, in fact, the most impressive musical reunion since the ...

Bruce Springsteen: The Meaning Of Bruce

Essay by Glenn O'Brien, Spin, November 1985

Hey, it was the greatest show I’ve ever seen. It was like rock ‘n’ roll and a gospel meeting and a party and the World ...

The Red Hot Chili Peppers: Red Hot Chili Peppers: Freaky Styley (EMI America/Enigma)

Review by Richard Gehr, Glenn O'Brien, Spin, November 1985

WELCOME TO THE Day-Glo minstrel show, bro, brought to you by the baddest posse of white funk puppies west of the mighty Mississip. ...

Tom Waits for No Man

Interview by Glenn O'Brien, Spin, November 1985

How to act. How to watch Mr. Rogers. How to pick a road manager. How to live in the big city. And more solid information. ...

The Minutemen: Minute By Minutemen

Profile and Interview by Byron Coley, Spin, December 1985

The jazz-power-punk trio from San Pedro is trying its damnedest to sell out — sort of. ...

Stevie Wonder: In Square Circle (Motown)

Review by R.J. Smith, Spin, December 1985

THESE THINGS never do fall from the sky, like factor emissions and bird shirt. But if they did (If your mother had skates she'd be ...

They Might Be Giants

Profile and Interview by Mark Dery, Spin, December 1985

THEY MIGHT be Eddie Haskell and Lumpy Rutherford 10 years after, rigged out respectively with pearl-inlaid accordion and Japanese Strat. ...

Blondie: Debbie's Back: Debbie Harry

Interview by Glenn O'Brien, Spin, January 1986

Debbie Harry and Chris Stein talk about Blondie, wrestling, disease, record rating, show biz, fear, and fantasy. ...

Cream, Ginger Baker: The Ginger Baker Challenge

Interview by Richard Gehr, Spin, January 1986

WHAT THE HELL is drummer dinger Baker doing in New York? Hanging out with the Celluloid Records central committee, of course, and laying down tracks for ...

The Residents: Part Four of the Mole Trilogy (Ralph)

Review by Richard Gehr, Spin, January 1986

PART THREE of the Residents' Mole Trilogy doesn't exist, but we can't let that keep us from utter confusion. It all comes down to the ...

Circle Jerks, Dead Kennedys: Circle Jerks: Wonderful (Combat Core)/Dead Kennedys: Frankenchrist (Alternative Tentacles)

Review by Byron Coley, Spin, February 1986

THE Circle Jerks and Dead Kennedys are two of a handfulla bands surviving in name and form from the first three waves of California-style pre-hardcore ...

ZZ Top: Life at the Top

Interview by Glenn O'Brien, Spin, February 1986

ZZ Top doesn't care that it took people 15 years to discover their mega-greatness. They've known all along that if you feel sharp, you be ...

Big Audio Dynamite: He Who Laughs Last

Interview by Lenny Kaye, Spin, March 1986

Two years ago Mick Jones was dishonorably discharged from the Clash. Now that he's having a blast with Big Audio Dynamite, it doesn't seem to ...

John Lydon, Malcolm McLaren, The Sex Pistols: Lydon vs McLaren: The End of the Affair

Report by Jon Savage, Spin, April 1986

EARLY IN 1976, the Sex Pistols were a good idea trying to get started, gate-crashing other people's concerts — with instruments allegedly stolen from rich ...

The Minutemen: 3-Way Tie (For Last) (SST)

Review by Byron Coley, Spin, April 1986

FATE SUCKS. And this this is not meant to be read in the Bob Christgau suck-is-good meaning of the word either. ...

The Residents: Residents Only

Profile and Interview by Richard Gehr, Spin, April 1986

Take a good hard look at America's preeminent underground avant-pop ensemble – you might like what you see. ...

Stan Ridgway's Twisted Charm

Interview by Laura Fissinger, Spin, May 1986

POP MUSIC'S intelligentsia claims Stan Ridgway as one of its own — seeing that no one else has really tried, maybe they have that right. ...

The Rolling Stones: Exiles on Mainstream

Essay by Glenn O'Brien, Spin, May 1986

Being a Rolling Stone used to mean never having to pick up a Grammy. Until now. ...

Camper Van Beethoven: Astral Geeks

Interview by Richard Gehr, Spin, June 1986

"WE TAKE way too many hallucinogens, we're totally paranoid, and we believe in giant conspiracies. If we get a flat tire, it's caused by the ...

The Pogues: Pogues Gallery

Interview by Glenn O'Brien, Spin, June 1986

Erin Go Bragh-less: A liberated Irish punk band rediscovers its roots. ...

Fabulous Thunderbirds Are Go

Interview by Glenn O'Brien, Spin, July 1986

DO YOU have any aliases? KIM WILSON (vocals, harmonica): I was Galita Slim once, as in Galita, California. And I was also Chesterfield King. ...

Fela Kuti: Fela Freed!

Interview by Randall Grass, Spin, July 1986

Nigerian authorities thought 18 months in jail might silence the rebel king of sex, hemp, and Afrobeat. They were wrong. ...

Husker Du: Hüsker Dü: Candy Apple Grey (Warner Bros.)

Review by Lenny Kaye, Spin, July 1986

DÜ BE DÜ BE DÜ, as new next-door label-mate Hoboken Frank likes to say. The Hüskers have joined forces with the true hard corp(oration), a ...

The Rolling Stones: Back To Zero

Report by Nick Kent, Spin, August 1986

The demise of the Rolling Stones may be attributable to one simple fact: the baddest, oldest rock 'n' roll band in the world has run ...

Ozzy Osbourne: I am Oz the Great and Terrible

Interview by Glenn O'Brien, Spin, September 1986

Everyone believes Ozzy Osbourne is the devil, the perfect scapegoat for hysteria and madness. "To be Ozzy Osbourne, you got to be special," he says. ...

Dead Kennedys: The Dead Kennedys: Goodnight, Democracy

Report by Chuck Eddy, Spin, September 1986

Sure, the Dead Kennedys are offensive, but obscene? It must be Jello, because jam don't shock like that. ...

Paul Simon: Graceland (Warner Bros.)

Review by Glenn O'Brien, Spin, November 1986

Graceland is a pilgrimage. On the title track the singer heads for the Presley estate in Memphis, filled with faith, trailed by doubt, led by ...

Grace Jones: Inside Story (Manhattan Records)

Review by Glenn O'Brien, Spin, January 1987

PEOPLE THINK of Grace Jones as a disco queen. People think of her as Conan the Barbarian's sidekick. As just another James Bond villainess. As ...

Paul Simon: Still Mbaqanga After All These Years

Interview by R.J. Smith, Spin, January 1987

For 20 years, Paul Simon whined and kvetched about the same things. Then he went to Africa and finally had fun. But he broke the ...

Swans: Holy Money (PVC)

Review by Byron Coley, Spin, January 1987

RECORDS BY the Swans have so little to do with pleasure, fun, and the, uh, joy of living that it's no off-a-log-fall explainin' why they ...

Kraftwerk: Electric Café (Warner Brothers)

Review by Glenn O'Brien, Spin, March 1987

Platter du Jour ...

Bon Jovi: Bon Vivant

Report and Interview by Glenn O'Brien, Spin, April 1987

They came, they made videos, they conquered: Five nice guys from New Jersey find a place in the sun. Article by Glenn O'Brien. ...

Jimmy Swaggart: The Best of Jimmy Swaggart (Jim Records)

Review by Glenn O'Brien, Spin, April 1987

A LOT OF fundamentalists today preach against the evils of rock 'n' roll, but TV evangelist Jimmy Swaggart has gone and done something about the ...

Julian Copes

Interview by Ira Robbins, Spin, May 1987

But sometimes it has been touch and go.   ...

Divine Horsemen: Devil's River/Mother's Worry (SST)

Review by Byron Coley, Spin, June 1987

WHILE dim bulbs and babes still a-swaddling may not be familiar with the work of Chris D, it's a fairly safe bet that most practicing ...

Meat Puppets: Mirage (SST)

Review by Chuck Eddy, Spin, June 1987

EVERYBODY ALWAYS SAYS Arizona's Meat Puppets sound like they're on drugs, but I wouldn't know about that kinda thing. To me, they just sound like ...

U2: Glory Days

Interview by Colin Irwin, Spin, June 1987

With a platinum-bound LP and sell-out tour, U2 have finally conquered America. But first they had to conquer the problem of being a political band ...

The Cure

Profile and Interview by Adam Sweeting, Spin, July 1987

Robert Smith grew up like any other alienated boy from the suburbs. Then he grew down and became one of pop music's great eccentrics. ...

Boogie Down Productions: Rap Attack

Report by Amy Linden, Spin, August 1987

ON RECORD, M.C. Shan is the mortal enemy of Boogie Down Productions' Scott LaRock and KRS One. They've been trading insults and waging a dis ...

Raging Slab Wants A Place In The Mall Of Fame

Profile and Interview by Howard Wuelfing, Spin, August 1987

RAGING SLAB is arguably the heppest metal-referent band in all of Manhattan, and among the reetest drinking buds you'll find anywhere in these United States. ...

GG Allin: Underground: GG Allin

Guide by Byron Coley, Spin, August 1987

FIRST things first. Just as 1986 was the Year of the 'Steen, 1987 is gonna be the Year of GG Allin. ...

We've Got a Fuzzbox and We're Gonna Use It: Girls Just Wanna Have Fuzz

Interview by Glenn O'Brien, Spin, August 1987

Face it. If the four women in Fuzzbox had called their album We've Got a MIDI-compatible Digital Sampling Device and We're Gonna Use It, it ...

That Petrol Emotion: Emotional Rescue

Interview by Jon Savage, Spin, September 1987

That Petrol Emotion ignite post-punk rock with incendiary politics. And they're putting out the fire with gasoline. Article by Jon Savage ...

Einstürzende Neubauten: Fünf Auf Der Nach Oben Offenen Richterskala (Some Bizzare/Relativity)

Review by Howard Wuelfing, Spin, November 1987

AT THE CORE of the Neubies' schtick is a knee-jerk rejection of every last element considered essential to rock music: guitars, drums, blues-based chord changes, ...

Swans: Children of God (Caroline)

Review by Howard Wuelfing, Spin, November 1987

CHILDREN OF God is a great Swans album and, possibly, an outstanding record by any standards. And it's the dreaded double set to boot! At times, ...

M/A/R/R/S

Profile and Interview by David Toop, Spin, January 1988

M/A/R/R/S BEGAN AS A collaboration between Martyn and Steve Young of the 4AD band Colourbox and Alex and Rudi of A. R. Kane. ...

Tony Bennett: Rebirth of the Cool

Interview by Glenn O'Brien, Spin, February 1988

TONY BENNETT is cool. I have felt this way since the early '60s. Sinatra was hip, but Tony was cool. He was a swinger singer. ...

Megadeth: So Far, So Good...So What! (Capitol)

Review by J.D. Considine, Spin, March 1988

MATURITY IS not a concept commonly associated with heavy metal (unless you're using it as a euphemism for "old and decrepit" in which case it ...

Django Reinhardt: Djangologie/USA Vols. 1-7 (DRG/Swing Records)

Review by Gene Santoro, Spin, April 1988

GYPSY GUITARIST Django Reinhardt offers an early modern (read post-phonograph) example of how pop music travels from its native habitat, is heard through alienated ears, ...

Bill Frisell Quartet: Look Out For Hope (ECM)

Review by Gene Santoro, Spin, May 1988

BILL FRISELL IS the Clark Kent of the electric guitar. Soft-spoken and self-effacing in conversation, he apparently breathes in lungfuls of raw fire when he ...

Guns N' Roses: Days Of Guns N' Roses

Interview by Bill Holdship, Spin, May 1988

In which our reporter discovers that L.A.'s reputed bad boys are good-bad, but they're not evil. ...

Chuck Brown & the Soul Searchers: Any Other Way to Go?/Live at the Crystal Skate (Rhythm Attack)

Review by Gene Santoro, Spin, June 1988

LIKE ITS cousin hip hop, go go is a recent product of a tangled international genealogy. When U.S. R&B and soul music rode radiowaves to ...

Merle Haggard: Chill Factor (Epic)

Review by Amy Linden, Spin, June 1988

NEW TRADITION, old tradition, any old way you choose it. Merle Haggard is a country music category unto himself. Any guy that lists his prison ...

Morrissey: Viva Morrissey

Review and Interview by Len Brown, Spin, June 1988

Lyricist extraordinaire, celibate aesthete, charismatic bigmouth, the former Smiths frontman returns for tea & sympathy ...

Joan Jett & the Blackhearts: Up Your Alley (Blackheart/CBS)

Review by Amy Linden, Spin, July 1988

HOW DO I love Joan Jett? Lemme count the ways, 1, 2, 3, 4! ...

Lita Ford: Lita

Interview by Holly Gleason, Spin, August 1988

IT'S A SLOW night at the Redwood Room, a shot-and-beer North Hollywood hole in the wall where blue collar types, in heavy work boots and ...

Fab 5 Freddy, Max Roach: Fab 5 Freddy & Max Roach: Hip Hop Bebop

Report and Interview by Frank Owen, Spin, October 1988

Max Roach says the new Charlie Parkers are in hip hop. The inventor of modern jazz drumming celebrates the new generation with wild stylist Fab ...

Homeboy Fashion

Report by Frank Owen, Spin, October 1988

WITH A defiant swagger, home-boy style '88 says, "Say it loud, I'm fake and I'm proud." Gucci may be good, but fake Gucci is what's ...

Acid House

Report by Sean O'Hagan, Spin, January 1989

A heady mix of sex, drugs, and trance dance music, Acid House has swept England with a wave of hedonism and made going out fun ...

John Cale, Lou Reed: Lou Reed and John Cale: Deja VU

Comment by Byron Coley, Spin, April 1989

POPULAR RUMOR has long held that Lou Reed and John Cale are mortal enemies. ...

Madonna: Wishing on a Star

Essay by Paul Mathur, Spin, April 1989

Success and failure are both difficult to endure. Along with success come drugs, divorce, fornication, bullying, travel, medication, depression, neurosis and suicide. With failure comes ...

Mudhoney: Psycho Dirtbag Blowout

Interview by Pat Blashill, Spin, April 1989

MARK ARM and Steve Turner are the Mutt and Jeff of distortion. He's Super Fuzz, I'm Big Muff, they'll say. Fuzz and Muff work for ...

Brian Eno: Man Out Of Time: Brian Eno

Interview by Don Watson, Spin, May 1989

"IS THIS 1962 OR 20 YEARS ON?" asked the sleeve notes of the first Roxy Music LP, the record that introduced Brian Eno to the ...

My Bloody Valentine: My Waking Dream

Interview by Pat Blashill, Spin, May 1989

My Bloody Valentine are black sheep grazing the English countryside with the subconscious as their shepherd. ...

Cindy Lee Berryhill: Beat Poetry

Profile and Interview by Mark Kemp, Spin, June 1989

Cindy Lee Berryhill, a bowl of musical trailmix, left California for New York. But she brought a lot of folklore with her. ...

Jerry Lee Lewis: Goodness Gracious

Interview by Gavin Martin, Spin, June 1989

If Elvis was rock's first celebrity, Jerry Lee Lewis, born in hellfire, was its first S.O.B. On the eve of Great Balls of Fire, a ...

Boys, The (U.S.), New Kids On The Block: The Boys: Message From The Boys (Motown); New Kids On The Block: Hanging Tough (Columbia)

Review by Amy Linden, Spin, June 1989

IN THE beginning there was the Jackson 5. They were cute, they were blessed with the best producers and material, they oozed personality. They were ...

Aretha Franklin: Through The Storm (Arista)

Review by Amy Linden, Spin, August 1989

ARETHA'S THE Queen of Soul; you know it, I know it, it's so obvious that it should be a Jeopardy question. Hell, even she knows ...

Inner City: Big Fun (Virgin)

Review by Frank Owen, Spin, August 1989

BACK IN THE late 70s, Detroit DJ the Electrifyin' Mojo would climax his nightly progressive funk'n'rock show with an on-air ceremony he called "Landing the ...

Labi Siffre: So Strong

Interview by Paul Mathur, Spin, August 1989

Seventeen years ago Labi Siffre was a British R&B star who sang nothing but love songs. Today he's once again a star, singing about struggle ...

Adeva: This Is A Warning

Profile and Interview by Frank Owen, Spin, October 1989

New Jersey has become a hothouse of hot house music. Adeva takes you there. ...

Chaka Khan: Life Is A Dance: The Remix Project (Warner Bros.)

Review by Frank Owen, Spin, October 1989

LIKE A DRUG, dance music needs harder and harder hits to sustain the same level of pleasure. What would have been a seismic drum track ...

Chuckii Booker: Chuckii (Atlantic)

Review by Amy Linden, Spin, October 1989

I DON'T KNOW what "new jack" is, or what the latest polyrhythm is, but I do know that when someone like Chuckii Booker comes along ...

Jefferson Airplane: Back to the Future

Interview by Bud Scoppa, Spin, October 1989

It was over 20 years ago today that the Jefferson Airplane first flew out of San Francisco. Refueled and reunited, the band is back on ...

King's X: Gretchen Goes To Nebraska (Megaforce)

Review by Deborah Frost, Spin, October 1989

VERNON REID loves them. Billy Sheehan loves them. The British heavy metal bible Kerrang! voted their debut "Best Album of 1988." But if King's X's ...

The Beastie Boys: Paid In Full

Report and Interview by Frank Owen, Spin, October 1989

The Beastie Boys say their old record company is withholding millions of their dollars. Def Jam's Russell Simmons says he taught the Beastie Boys how to walk and talk. A ...

Big Daddy Kane: It's a Big Daddy Thing (Cold Chillin'/Reprise)

Review by Frank Owen, Spin, November 1989

LIKE HIS ground-breaking debut album, Long Live the Kane, It's a Big Daddy Thing finds Kane in the forefront of the most important new direction ...

Black Box, De La Soul, Stetsasonic: Sampling: Bite This

Report by Frank Owen, Spin, November 1989

When De La Soul sampled a Turtles oldie, the Turtles weren't flattered. So they sued. Does their legal action threaten the existence of hip hop? Is ...

Hip House

Report by Frank Owen, Spin, December 1989

Once divided by a well-guarded aesthetic border, the hip hop and house scenes are now mixing. And hip house is the new style. ...

Charlatans, The (UK): The Charlatans

Interview by Simon Reynolds, Spin, 1990

In the U.K., the last few years have seen the original sequence of '60s rock replayed – in reverse. Nineteen eighty-eight was the year of ...

The Greening of Planet Pop

Report by Frank Owen, Spin, January 1990

Ecology is the greatest thing on a lot of rock stars' minds these days. But what about all the plastic wrap on their albums? ...

2 Live Crew: Pump Up The Bass

Interview by Frank Owen, Spin, February 1990

Rapping about bass and booty, Miami rap is party music with a foul mouth. And 2 Live Crew are the nasty rulers of the Miami ...

Patti LaBelle, Regina Belle: Regina Belle: Stay With Me (Columbia)/Patti LaBelle: Be Yourself (MCA)

Review by Amy Linden, Spin, February 1990

THE DIVA is that most special of musical creations; her care and feeding are extremely important. ...

Whitesnake: Slip of the Tongue (Geffen)

Review by Bud Scoppa, Spin, February 1990

A VENERABLE Brit rock band whose only constant was crusty-throated journeyman David Coverdale (his main claim to fame being a 1973-1976 stint as Deep Purple's ...

Jerry Lee Lewis: Killer: The Mercury Years

Review by Nick Tosches, Spin, March 1990

I'M SITTING there in Dennis Quaid's house, this white thing on La Sombra, last spring, a few months before that stiff Great Balls of Fire ...

Ice Cube, N.W.A.: NWA: Hanging Tough

Interview by Frank Owen, Spin, April 1990

Hounded by the FBI and acclaimed as the new, new Sex Pistols, NWA's rise has been rapid and sensational. But now that chief spokesman and ...

The Cramps: Stay Sick! (Enigma)

Review by Bill Holdship, Spin, April 1990

THE CRAMPS have always understood those fundamental building blocks that made early rock'n'roll what it was — scary, lustful, exciting and, above all, funny. ...

Sun City Girls: Torch of the Mystics

Review by Byron Coley, Spin, May 1990

JUST OUT OF the box, and so majestic that it makes my brain do out-skull jigs across my sizzling, glass-strewn floor, is the Sun City ...

New Kids On The Block: Fandemonium

Report and Interview by Tony Fletcher, Spin, June 1990

Riding a wave of fan hysteria and saturation marketing, the New Kids On The Block are teen girl America's favorite group. ...

Bongwater: Too Much Sleep (Shimmy-Disc)

Review by Richard Gehr, Spin, July 1990

KRAMER AND ANN MAGNUSON of Bongwater — the Shimmy-Disc shaman and the unlikely TV star; the Carlos and Carla Castaneda of the bi-coastal blunderground — ...

Kid Creole & The Coconuts: Private Waters in the Great Divide (Columbia)

Review by Hank Bordowitz, Spin, July 1990

EVEN WHEN August (Kid Creole) Darnell is writing for records, he's writing soundtracks. Historically, Kid Creole and the Coconuts' tunes worked well in concert, but ...

Robert Plant: Manic Nirvana (Es Paranza)

Review by Chuck Eddy, Spin, July 1990

LIKE SO MANY of his fellow '70s prog-rockers (Yes, Rush, Peter Gabriel, Queen, Jethro Tull, King Crimson), Robert Plant spent the '80s trying hard to ...

Esquerita: The First Wild Man of Rock'n'roll

Retrospective by Miriam Linna, Spin, August 1990

ONE OF THE truly enigmatic characters in rock'n'roll history, Eskew Reeder (AKA Esquerita) falls somewhere between the Phantom and Screamin' Jay Hawkins, although he could ...

Hail, Hail Rock'n'Roll

Essay by Nick Tosches, Spin, August 1990

NOW THAT the 1980s, whatever the fuck they were, are, like the great Liberace himself, dead and gone, can't we get this whole dumb business ...

2 Live Crew: Fear Of A Black Penis

Report and Interview by Frank Owen, Spin, September 1990

A media moral panic about their alleged obscenity has catapulted Miami rappers 2 Live Crew to national notoriety. FRANK OWEN reports from Florida. ...

Andrew Ridgeley: Son of Albert (Columbia)

Review by Chuck Eddy, Spin, September 1990

IN WHAM!, Andrew Ridgeley did whatever it is Chris Lowe does in the Pet Shop Boys. You can't call it "looking pretty for group pictures," ...

Geto Boys: Censorship Isn't Def American

Interview by Frank Owen, Spin, November 1990

Sexually explicit and graphically violent, the Geto Boys are Rick Rubin's latest rap signing. Now Geffen won't release their album. FRANK OWEN reports. ...

Faith No More: Artists Of The Year

Interview by Frank Owen, Spin, December 1990

WHETHER HE'S advising Sassy readers to take drugs, kill babies, and steal everything, or wearing a shirt with multiple images of Jesus Christ jacking off ...

3 Mustaphas 3: Soup of the Century (Rykodisc)

Review by Richard Gehr, Spin, January 1991

THE 3 MUSTAPHAS 3 are the Residents of non-Western popular music, right? After all, both groups (1) hide behind costumes, (2) make musical hash of ...

Monie Love: Down to Earth (Warner Bros.)

Review by Amy Linden, Spin, January 1991

LET'S JUST cut to the chase on this one: Down to Earth is okay. Not great, not bad — just a firm okay. With all ...

Rosanne Cash: Interiors (Columbia)

Review by Amy Linden, Spin, January 1991

ROSANNE CASH wasn't kidding when she called this one Interiors. With the exception of 'This World' (which is about child abuse, among other things, and ...

Shonen Knife: Pretty Little Baka Guy & Live in Japan (Rockville)

Review by Chuck Eddy, Spin, June 1991

WHAT REALLY puts the pop-rockettes in Japan's legendary Shonen Knife light-years ahead of such inconsequential Western frauds as "Lush" (how Shonen Knife would pronounce Rush) ...

Electronic: Getting Away With It

Interview by John McCready, Spin, July 1991

John McCready probes the northern soul of Electronic, the first English supergroup of the '90s ...

Fishbone: Reality Check

Interview by Bill Holdship, Spin, July 1991

Fishbone is rocking the house as hard as it always has, and the rest of the world is finally listening — between stage dives that ...

Pere Ubu: Heart of Darkness

Interview by Jon Savage, Spin, July 1991

Pere Ubu remains one of the most influential, innovative groups to emerge from the mid-'70s American punk-new wave movement. JON SAVAGE listens to some pearls ...

Violent Femmes: Why Do Birds Sing? (Slash/Reprise)

Review by Jon Young, Spin, July 1991

VIOLENT FEMMES have long carried on the proud tradition of rockin' cool jerks without inspiring the respect accorded fellow geeks David Byrne and Jonathan Richman. ...

Sonny Sharrock: Ask the Ages (Axiom/Island)

Review by Byron Coley, Spin, September 1991

GUITARIST SONNY Sharrock is best known (or at least most revered) for his work's skronk-fusionist qualities. His massively searing string-attack has been legendary in noise-fan ...

Sonny Sharrock: Ask the Ages (Axiom/Island)

Review by Byron Coley, Spin, September 1991

GUITARIST SONNY Sharrock is best known (or at least most revered) for his work's skronk-fusionist qualities. His massively searing string-attack has been legendary in noise-fan ...

The Electric Eels: Electric Eels: God Says Fuck You (Homestead)

Review by Chuck Eddy, Spin, April 1992

THE ELECTRIC Eels inhabited the same '70s Ohio milieu as Pere Ubu, the Pagans, X-X, the Styrenes (whose new It's Artastic: Cleveland 1975-79 is prog ...

The Cure: Wish (Elektra)

Review by Jon Young, Spin, May 1992

SOB, SOB. Whimper, sniff. Sorry. I was just savoring the new Cure disc, which means taking a headlong plunge into a deep, dark pit of ...

PJ Harvey: Kicking Against The Pricks

Interview by Martin Aston, Spin, November 1992

Twenty-two-year-old Polly Harvey fronts this year's most raved-over new group, PJ Harvey. Martin Aston gets bewitched and bewildered. ...

AC/DC: AC/DC Live

Review by Chuck Eddy, Spin, December 1992

AC/DC's ROLE as rap-music progenitor cannot be overlooked. ...

Seven Year Bitch, Tribe 8: Seven Year Bitch: Sick 'Em (C/Z); Tribe 8: Pig Bitch (EP Harp)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, January 1993

THANKS TO the Riot Grrrl revolution, perhaps, or just maybe the fact that indie labels have been sprouting up quicker than McDonald's franchises, women rockers ...

Sun Ra And His Intergalactic Harmonic Divergent Jazz Arkestra: S.O.B.'s, New York

Live Review by Richard Gehr, Spin, January 1993

WHEN SUN RA opened for Sonic Youth in Central Park last summer, the bill confirmed at least one unavoidable equation: No Sun Ra equals no ...

Madder Rose: Bring It Down (Seed)

Review by Rachel Felder, Spin, February 1993

It's such an enticing equation that you wonder why no one else is putting it together in exactly these proportions: Mix equal parts revved-up Dinosaur ...

Shonen Knife: Let's Knife (Virgin)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, March 1993

ALMOST TEN YEARS since its recordings first invaded the U.S. as a Japanese import in late 1983, Osaka, Japan's punkiest Barbie doll fans are finally ...

Jellyfish, Lenny Kravitz: Jellyfish: Spilt Milk/Lenny Kravitz: Are You Gonna Go My Way (Virgin)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, April 1993

"DO YOU like Queen?" asks my editor. "I hope not." ...

Soul Asylum: Universal Amphitheatre, Los Angeles, CA

Live Review by Bill Holdship, Spin, April 1993

"WE'RE THE opening band," mumbled Dave Pirner, as Soul Asylum burst into 'Veil of Tears', kicking off the final set of what was a pretty ...

King Missile: Missile Epistle

Profile and Interview by Evelyn McDonnell, Spin, May 1993

KING MISSILE'S John S. Hall is eating pierogis at New York's Kiev Restaurant, the 24-hour Ukrainian coffee shop outside of which the singer finds his ...

American Music Club: Lonely Hearts Club Band

Profile and Interview by Evelyn McDonnell, Spin, June 1993

Evelyn McDonnell walks and talks the streets of San Francisco with Mark Eitzel and American Music Club ...

Prince and The New Power Generation: The Sunrise Musical Theatre, Florida

Live Review by Jason Cohen, Spin, June 1993

"Y'ALL MAKE ME SORRY I stayed away so long," Prince declared, as the opening night of his first American tour in five years reached a ...

Suede in the U.S.A.

Report and Interview by Simon Reynolds, Spin, June 1993

Britain’s new white-hot hope brings its liberated sexual stance to the States. Are you ready to get Suede? ...

Robert Plant: Last of the Red-Hot Rock Stars

Report and Interview by Deborah Frost, Spin, September 1993

"CAMION! CAMION!" comes the cry from the front seat of the rented Mercedes wagon. "I don't have time to die!" ...

The Cure: Show and Tell: An Interview with Robert Smith

Interview by Susan Compo, Spin, November 1993

After nearly 15 years as the pope of mope, the Cure's Robert Smith longs to let his hair down, watch some soccer, and read a ...

Los Lobos: Just Another Band From East L.A. — A Collection

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, November 1993

BOX SETS generally exhaust you with their completeness; greatest-hits albums worship a few select songs. ...

The Cure: Happily Ever After

Interview by Susan Compo, Spin, November 1993

After nearly 15 years as the pope of mope, The Cure's Robert Smith longs to let his hair down, watch some soccer, and read a ...

Frank Sinatra/Don Rickles: Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Uniondale, NY

Live Review by Richard Gehr, Spin, January 1994

"HE TOUCHES his dick more than Robin Williams does," mocked my wife as a tuxedoed Don Rickles lumbered around the square, center-court stage like a ...

Guns N' Roses: The Spaghetti Incident? Geffen

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, February 1994

LISTENING TO The Spaghetti Incident? is like hearing Use Your Illusion I and II refracted through cover versions. The first song, Axl Rose's pipe-bending 'Since ...

Material: Hallucination Engine (Axiom/Island)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, March 1994

BE READY to take a passive role listening to this album, unless you're good enough to recognize Vikku Vinayakram playing the ghatam when you hear ...

Afghan Whigs: The Afghan Whigs: Great American Music Hall, San Francisco, CA

Live Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, March 1994

I ARRIVED full of doubts, prompted by the Afghan Whigs' major-label debut, one of those song-cycle LPs. The story of a man and woman trapped ...

Frank Zappa: Viva Zappa! 1940-1993

Obituary by Richard Gehr, Spin, March 1994

THE SUMMER between eighth and ninth grades — the same mystical season I smoked pot, read V, and almost had sex with someone else for ...

Kurt Cobain, Nirvana: Kurt Cobain: Revolutionary Debris

Comment by Eric Weisbard, Spin, April 1994

I STILL prefer to believe that Kurt Cobain's life was saved by rock'n'roll. ...

Interview: Stephen Dunifer

Interview by Eric Weisbard, Spin, May 1994

Broadcast cowboy, spends his Sunday nights hidden in the dark hills of Berkeley, California, illegally transmitting his version of alternative radio. Is he a transistor ...

Primal Scream: Give Out But Don't Give Up

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, May 1994

YOU DON'T necessarily need the flash and appeal of the New York Dolls or Aerosmith in order to try to be the Rolling Stones and ...

Primal Scream: Give Out But Don't Give Up (Sire/Reprise)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, May 1994

YOU DON'T necessarily need the flash and appeal of the New York Dolls or Aerosmith in order to try to be the Rolling Stones and ...

Nirvana: Revolutionary Debris: Kurt Cobain

Comment by Eric Weisbard, Spin, June 1994

I STILL PREFER to believe that Kurt Cobain's life was saved by rock'n'roll. I picture him wearing his favorite T-shirt, the one with the image ...

Travis Tritt: Ten Feet Tall and Bulletproof (Warner Bros. Nashville)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, June 1994

WE COULD try and get worked up about Travis Tritt the woman-baiter, who made it huge with 'Here's a Quarter (Call Someone Who Cares)', sang ...

Arrested Development: Bimbo's, San Francisco

Live Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, August 1994

AT ARRESTED Development concerts, its not enough to wave your hands around; "put your souls up" is the cry. Three songs in, Speech stopped everything ...

L7: Hungry for Stink (Slash)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, August 1994

AFTER LISTENING TO Hungry for Stink long enough to decide I like it, I put on Bricks Are Heavy, which included 'Pretend We're Dead' and ...

Green Day: Young, Loud, and Snotty

Interview by Eric Weisbard, Spin, September 1994

GREEN DAY's unexpected rise from Gilman Street punk urchins to MTV poster children has not come without a price. Eric Weisbard wonders if they can ...

House Of Pain: House of Pain: Same As It Ever Was (Tommy Boy)

Review by Chuck Eddy, Spin, September 1994

IF I WERE in high school now, I'd feel threatened by House of Pain — they remind me of the burr-headed white gutterboys who congregate ...

Jack Logan: Bulk (Medium Cool/Twin/Tone Records)

Review by Byron Coley, Spin, September 1994

EVER SINCE Daniel Johnston's pained urks began to be appreciated by hep collegiate voyeurs, the cassette revolution has taken a turn for the worse. Dork ...

Future Sound of London: The Future Sound of London: Lifeforms (Astralwerks/Caroline)

Review by Richard Gehr, Spin, September 1994

GOD BLESS the Future Sound of London — Gary Cobain and Brian Dougans — for striving to infuse personality and humanity into the chip-driven technoscape. ...

A Tribe Called Quest, The Beastie Boys, The Breeders, George Clinton, L7, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, Smashing Pumpkins: Various Artists: Lollapalooza '94, Sam Boyd Stadium University of Nevada Las Vegas July 1,1994

Live Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, September 1994

THE DIFFERENCE between Lollapalooza 1994 and Lollapolooza Past is that this year Perry Farrell and colleagues decided the music being offered couldn't just be loud, ...

Warren G: Regulate… G Funk Era (Violator/RAL)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, September 1994

THE THING that gets me about 
Nate Dogg and Warren G.'s 'Regulate' is how, when MTV airs the video, you hear Nate Dogg sing the ...

John Fahey: The Persecutions And Resurrections Of Blind Joe Death

Profile and Interview by Byron Coley, Spin, November 1994

More than 30 years of mind-blowing guitar playing and composing have earned John Fahey a hip handful of devoted fans and a squalid room in ...

Joe Meek: Various Artists: It's Hard to Believe It - the Amazing World of Joe Meek (Razor & Tie)

Review by Simon Reynolds, Spin, 1995

WHO WAS Joe Meek? A cut-price Spector crafting pocket symphonies in his North London studio for a stable of dodgy pre-Beatles combos? Yes, but the ...

Jimmy Page/Robert Plant: Jimmy Page and Robert Plant: Been A Long Time

Interview by Deborah Frost, Spin, January 1995

Led Zeppelin's chapter in the history of rock'n'roll has long been secure. So why have Robert Plant and Jimmy Page decided to rewrite the ending? ...

The Jesus & Mary Chain, Mazzy Star: The Jesus & Mary Chain/Mazzy Star: The Academy, New York City

Live Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, January 1995

TWO BANDS, and for the whole evening not one word was exchanged between performers and audience; the spotlight never shined in the musicians' eyes. Wouldn't ...

Bettie Serveert: Lamprey (Matador/Atlantic)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, February 1995

A CERTAIN ubiquitous film director has commented that surf music isn't about surfing, it's just spaghetti western soundtracks sped up. Nice one, Quentin, but why ...

Green Day: Nassau Memorial Coliseum, Uniondale, New York

Live Review by Michael Azerrad, Spin, March 1995

GREEN DAY at Nassau? The band that had been playing graffiti-riddled ratholes for gas money only months before took six minutes to sell all 14,895 ...

Nine Inch Nails: Madison Square Garden, New York City

Live Review by Jason Cohen, Spin, March 1995

FOR A LONG TIME NOW, there's been but one thing missing from Trent Reznor and Nine Inch Nails: Crackerjacks! ...

Offspring: Revenge Of The Nerds

Interview by Chuck Eddy, Spin, March 1995

The Offspring put the pop back in punk and fashioned the indie success story of the decade. Chuck Eddy testifies. ...

Guns N' Roses: The Ten That Matter Most '85-'95: Guns N' Roses

Retrospective by Chuck Eddy, Spin, April 1995

GUNS N' ROSES surprised me in 1987 simply by being search-and-destroy young punks who weren't afraid to sing and dance. ...

Nirvana: The Ten That Matter Most '85-'95: Nirvana

Retrospective by Eric Weisbard, Spin, April 1995

What does it take to be named one of the top ten artists of the decade? Innovation, influence, imagination, integrity. It all adds up to ...

Pavement: Wowee Zowee (Matador)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, May 1995

THINK ABOUT IT. A band works years to learn its instruments, play out, record, suffer the blows of fortune, regroup, play better than ever — ...

Radiohead: The Bends (Capitol)

Review by Chuck Eddy, Spin, May 1995

THIS IS one of those follow-up albums (like the last Spin Doctors one and, I fear, the next Counting Crows, the Offspring, and Blur records) ...

The Stone Roses: The Morning After

Retrospective and Interview by Simon Reynolds, Spin, May 1995

"I guess you had to be there – probably Manchester, definitely England – to understand how the Stone Roses came to matter so much in ...

Aphex Twin: I Care Because You Do (Sire/Elektra)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, July 1995

NO, MR TWAIN, I care because you do. I wasn't sure I did, for a minute — the largely drumless synth moans of 1994's oddly ...

R.E.M.: Shoreline Amphitheatre, Mountain View, CA

Live Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, August 1995

"I DON'T FIND R.E.M. transcendent." complained a friend who had just witnessed one of the band's first U.S. performances in five years. Well, fair enough, ...

Everclear: In The 'Clear': Everclear

Interview by Michael Azerrad, Spin, September 1995

ART ALEXAKIS SAYS says all the right things. In a cushy, white conference room in Capitol Records' midtown Manhattan offices, Everclear's frontman utters such statements ...

Blind Melon: Soup (Capitol)

Review by Chuck Eddy, Spin, October 1995

'NO RAIN' by Blind Melon was a very popular song around my house two summers ago — all I can say is our life was ...

Jerry Garcia, Grateful Dead: Jerry Garcia: The Fat Man Sings

Obituary by Richard Gehr, Spin, October 1995

Richard Gehr pays tribute to the mind-bending music and halcyon spirit of the late Jerry Garcia. ...

David Bowie, Nine Inch Nails: David Bowie and Nine Inch Nails: Great Woods Amphitheater, Mansfield, MA

Live Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, December 1995

THE MOMENT to remember was the two headliners playing together, the end of the Nine Inch Nails set fusing without pause into the beginning of ...

Green Day: Insomniac (Reprise)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, December 1995

GREEN DAY'S success has returned to vogue one of rock's simplest and most crucial sounds, the uptempo party bash that dates to all those garage ...

Nine Inch Nails, Trent Reznor: Trent Reznor: Sympathy for the Devil

Interview by Eric Weisbard, Spin, February 1996

POLITICAL OPPORTUNISTS MAY HAVE BRANDED TRENT REZNOR MORALLY REPUGNANT, BUT YOU BRANDED HIM SPIN'S ARTIST OF THE YEAR. SENIOR EDITOR ERIC WEISBARD JOURNEYS TO REZNOR'S ADOPTED ...

Lou Reed: Set The Twilight Reeling (Warner Bros.)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, March 1996

LOU REED is old-school about albums; he looked the word up in a dictionary, found it meant a binder of blank of pages used for ...

Hampton Grease Band: Music To Eat

Review by Byron Coley, Spin, June 1996

THE HAMPTON GREASE BAND were an Atlanta-based combo unlike any other. A genuinely strange and Southern-fried cross between the early Mothers of Invention, the Grateful ...

Los Lobos: Wild Gift

Profile and Interview by Richard Gehr, Spin, June 1996

Years down the road, Los Lobos defy all odds, making the most radically experimental music of their career. Richard Gehr hones in on their secret ...

The Sex Pistols: A Seance in Finsbury Park: The Sex Pistols Reunite

Live Review by Jon Savage, Spin, August 1996

JUST BEFORE the Sex Pistols take the stage in the waning light, a curious hush falls on the boisterous punk crowd. A myth is to ...

A Tribe Called Quest: Beats, Rhymes and Life (Jive)

Review by Will Hermes, Spin, September 1996

LESS INTROVERTED THAN De La Soul and less weird than the Jungle Brothers, A Tribe Called Quest were always the populists of the Native Tongues ...

Rage Against the Machine: Red, Hot and Bothered

Report and Interview by R.J. Smith, Spin, October 1996

Rage Against the Machine have scorched America with their Molotov cocktail or hip-hop, hardcore, and extreme politics. But are they too rad for Russia? RJ Smith ...

Butthole Surfers: Feeding the Fish: An Oral History of the Butthole Surfers

Retrospective and Interview by John Morthland, Joe Nick Patoski, Spin, November 1996

CAST OF CHARACTERS Jim Berry Road sound engineer for the Butthole Surfers, 1985-92. Jello Biafra Lead singer of the Dead Kennedys and self-described "absentee thoughtlord" of Alternative Tentacles, ...

Sheryl Crow: Sheryl Crow (A&M)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, November 1996

ALMOST ANY song here would sound just fine played next to Beck on the radio. Both artists are rejuvenating the LA singer/songwriter for a digital ...

Tupac Shakur: All Eyes On Him

Obituary by R.J. Smith, Spin, December 1996

Tupac Shakur was more then just another million-selling gangsta rapper. He polarized the races like few pop stars, in death as in life. ...

PJ Harvey, John Parish: John Parish and Polly Jean Harvey: The Fleece & Firkin, Bristol

Live Review by Ben Thompson, Spin, January 1997

POLLY JEAN Harvey first met John Parish ten years ago, when he was the neighborhood performance-art lecturer in her hometown of Yeovil. She went on ...

Offspring: The Offspring: Ixnay on the Hombre (Columbia)

Review by R.J. Smith, Spin, February 1997

OF COURSE The Offspring hail from Orange County. They have to be from Orange County. Frontman Dexter Holland was a high school punk rocker who ...

Moby: Tech no!

Interview by Eric Weisbard, Spin, March 1997

One-time electronic-music evangelist Moby has converted to alternative rock. Talk about bad timing. ...

Live: Tower Theater, Philadelphia PA

Live Review by Chuck Eddy, Spin, May 1997

ALL THE MOST-embarrassing-to-watch dancers in the '90s are bald: Sinead O'Connor, Michael Stipe, Peter Garrett of Midnight Oil, and now Live's Ed Kowalczyk. ...

Wu-Tang Clan: Phantoms of the Hip-hopera

Report and Interview by R.J. Smith, Spin, July 1997

After four years of frenzied
 solo excursions, the members of Wu-Tang Clan reconvene as a group amid the usual circumstances — mystery, panic, tragedy — ...

Michael Jackson: Blood on the Dance Floor: HIStory in the Mix (Epic)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, August 1997

ANYONE CAN BE rebellious or avant-garde — even fanzine writers — but if you hope to be reckoned amongst the truly weird, it sure helps ...

Leah Andreone, Tracy Chapman, Paula Cole, Lauren Hoffman, Jewel, Sarah McLachlan, Mudgirl, Kinnie Starr, Suzanne Vega, Cassandra Wilson: Lilith Fair: The Gorge Amphitheatre George, Washington

Live Review by Evelyn McDonnell, Spin, September 1997

"JUST A SECOND, just a second now," said Canadian performer Kinnie Starr as she abruptly swung her electric guitar down and stepped off the tiny ...

Fela Kuti: Afro Poppa: Fela Kuti, 1938-1997

Obituary by Richard Gehr, Spin, October 1997

IN THE annals of pop political activism, taking on TicketMaster or spoofing K Mart consumerism hardly compares to the cheeky dissidence of Nigerian superstar Fela ...

Everclear: So Much for the Afterglow (Capitol)

Review by Chuck Eddy, Spin, November 1997

A DECADE AGO, I pushed my toddler son's stroller through Ann Arbor, Michigan, where marijuana was almost legal and even adults dressed like college students. ...

Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, 1948-1997

Obituary by Will Hermes, Spin, November 1997

IT'S SADLY IRONIC that superstar qawwali singer Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan — the uncontested voice of modern Pakistan — would die on August 16, only ...

Radiohead: Band of the Year: Radiohead

Report and Interview by Pat Blashill, Spin, January 1998

Thom Yorke is one paranoid android: freaked out by cars, haunted by houses, suspicious of everyone. You couldn't ask for a better rock star. ...

Jane's Addiction: Hammerstein Ballroom, New York NY

Live Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, February 1998

I'M SITTING in a second-story box on the opening night of the Jane's Addiction reunion tour, and suddenly Perry Farrell is floating overhead, lying face ...

Metallica: CoreStates Center Parking Lot, Philadelphia PA

Live Review by Chuck Eddy, Spin, February 1998

IT WAS dubbed the "Million Decibel March," but Metallica's purported return to hard rockin' drew a crowd you might expect to see at a Bryan ...

Metallica: CorseStates Center Parking Lot, Philadelphia

Live Review by Chuck Eddy, Spin, February 1998

IT WAS DUBBED the "Million Decibel March," but Metallica's purported return to hard rockin' drew a crowd you might expect to see at a Bryan ...

Atari Teenage Riot: What's the Frequency, Alec?

Interview by R.J. Smith, Spin, March 1998

The revolution is nigh, heralds radical German dude/Atari Teenage Rioter Alec Empire. RJ Smith learns it will all be in the mid-range. ...

Pearl Jam: Yield (Epic)

Review by R.J. Smith, Spin, March 1998

ANGELS are God's designated hitters. They're represented in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, among many other religions; they pretty much show up any place people put ...

John Fahey: Resurrection Shuffle

Report by Byron Coley, Spin, April 1998

John Fahey's Revenant label bestows the breath of life. ...

Pulp: People's Poet: Pulp: This Is Hardcore (Island)

Review by Nick Hornby, Spin, May 1998

On the long-awaited sequel to Pulp's breakthrough album, Different Class, England's unofficial laureate Jarvis Cocker perfects his poetry of the prosaic. By Nick Hornby ...

Rancid: Plotting a Punky Reggae Party

Interview by Chuck Eddy, Spin, May 1998

TIM ARMSTRONG once sang about punk-rock squats and dirt-cheap crash pads. Now the Rancid singer/guitarist is giving the grand tour of his Los Angeles dream ...

Lucinda Williams: Lost in America

Interview by R.J. Smith, Spin, July 1998

HOW DID A 45-YEAR-OLD "NEUROTIC DIVA" WITH ONE FOOT IN FAULKNER'S SOUTH AND ONE FOOT IN GARTH'S MANAGE TO MAKE THE YEAR'S BEST ALBUM? SIMPLE, SAYS ...

Ash Ra Tempel, Can: Krautrock Revisited: Life After Can and Ash Ra Tempel

Essay by Richard Gehr, Spin, July 1998

EVEN BEFORE KRAFTWERK'S great mid-'70s cars, trains, and airwaves trilogy, Krautrock was largely about getting away – especially from Germany itself. The band Can in ...

The Beach Boys, Brian Wilson: Brian Wilson: Imagination (Giant)

Review by Barney Hoskyns, Spin, August 1998

IT IS HARD NOT TO harbour mixed feelings about Brian Wilson in the late '90s. While it’s great that he’s up and about (and not ...

Korn: Harvest of Sorrow: Korn: Follow The Leader (Immortal/Epic)

Review by R.J. Smith, Spin, October 1998

For millions of kids, Korn's house of pain feels like a home away from home. ...

Alanis Morissette: Addicted To Love: Alanis Morissette: Supposed Former Infatuation Junkie (Maverick)

Review by Chuck Eddy, Spin, December 1998

The biggest female rock star of the '90s returns with an album even more schizo than Jagged Little Pill ...

RZA: The Man With The Microchip Brain

Interview by Miles Marshall Lewis, Spin, December 1998

Wu-Tang Clan frontman RZA makes his first movie: the bizarre sci-fi hip-hop adventure flick, Bobby Digital ...

Elliott Smith: He's Mr Dyingly Sad, And You're Mystifyingly Glad

Profile and Interview by R.J. Smith, Spin, January 1999

ELLIOTT SMITH recovers nicely. Just one hour ago he was sitting in a tiny backstage room, enjoying a postshow libation and breathing in a blue ...

Vic Chesnutt: The Salesman and Bernadette (Capricorn)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, January 1999

THIS IS THE best record of the year at making time stop. Vic Chesnutt tells a story. Maybe the tale pulls into it specific figures, ...

The Black Crowes: By Your Side (Columbia)

Review by Chuck Eddy, Spin, February 1999

Whenever I shoot pool, my first jukebox quarter inevitably goes to 'Hard To Handle' by the Black Crowes, which inspires such grand delusions of well-endowment ...

The Roots: Apocalypse Now: The Roots

Report and Interview by Miles Marshall Lewis, Spin, March 1999

THE ROOTS' new album, Things Fall Apart, bears all the signs of the Big Statement. There are five separate covers, each featuring a disturbing historical ...

Paul Westerberg: How Paul Westerberg Got His Groove Back

Interview by R.J. Smith, Spin, March 1999

ON HIS CLEAR-EYED NEW ALBUM, THE ONETIME BASTARD OF THE YOUNG MAY HAVE FINALLY LAID TO REST THE BEERY MEMORY OF THE LATE, GREAT REPLACEMENTS. ...

The Olivia Tremor Control: Black Foliage: Animation Music by the Olivia Tremor Control (Flydaddy)

Review by Marc Weingarten, Spin, April 1999

IF APPLES in Stereo are the Elephant 6 movement's white-gloved archivists, and Neutral Milk Hotel are the resident primitive surrealists, then the Olivia Tremor Control ...

The Prodigy: Prodigy: Smack My Mix Up

Interview by Simon Reynolds, Spin, May 1999

EVER SINCE 'Firestarter' and 'Breathe' transformed Prodigy into rave'n'roll superstars, Liam Howlett, the band's leader and musical brain, has taken pains to distance Prodigy from ...

Ben Folds Five: The Unauthorized Biography Of Reinhold Messner

Review by Erik Himmelsbach, Spin, June 1999

NOW THAT they have your attention, Ben Folds Five want you to feel their pain. Although the Chapel Hill, North Carolina, drums-bass-piano combo rose through ...

DMX, Jay Z, Method Man, Redman: Hard Knock Life Tour: Jay-Z, DMX, Method Man, and Redman: Continental Arena, East Rutherford, New Jersey

Live Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, June 1999

New York State of Rhyme ...

Pavement: The Long and Winding Road: Pavement: Terror Twilight (Matador)

Review by R.J. Smith, Spin, June 1999

Pavement turn down the noise and open up their hearts, sort of.  ...

Augustus Pablo 1953-99

Obituary by Richard Gehr, Spin, July 1999

JAMAICA'S A QUIRKY PLACE, to say the least, so it's oddly appropriate that its foremost instrumental soloist would turn out to be a low-key virtuoso ...

The Chemical Brothers: Back To The Lab

Interview by Simon Reynolds, Spin, July 1999

WHAT DO YOU DO WHEN THE BLOCK-ROCKIN' SOUND YOU INVENTED HAS BECOME THE SOUNDTRACK TO LAME TEEN FLICKS AND TAMPON COMMERCIALS? IF YOU'RE THE CHEMICAL ...

Flaming Lips: The Flaming Lips: The Soft Bulletin

Review by Barney Hoskyns, Spin, July 1999

"PSYCHEDELIA" has undergone some curious convolutions since its Haight-Ashbury heyday. For the most part, though, the hallucinogens have gone, leaving a purely musical residue - ...

Souled American: Weird Old Country: The Disinternment of Souled American

Retrospective by Richard Gehr, Spin, July 1999

WITH DUE RESPECT to old Uncle Tupelo, it was the cultishly-revered country-and-Midwestern combo Souled American who laid the deep, dank groundwork for the No Depression ...

Beck, Tenacious D: Casino Royale: Beck, Tenacious D, Tropicana Casino & Resort, Las Vegas NV

Live Review by R.J. Smith, Spin, August 1999

HORNS: CHECK. WIGS: CHECK. FALSETTO: CHECK. BECK PULLS OUT THE STOPS IN SLOTSVILLE. BUT THOSE BUFFETS ARE TOUGH COMPETITION ...

Kool Keith: The Man Of 1000 Masks

Profile and Interview by R.J. Smith, Spin, August 1999

WHEN HE'S NOT RAPPING ABOUT ALIEN AUTOPSIES AND FUNKY GYNECOLOGISTS, KOOL KEITH IS COMING UP WITH THE STRANGEST PERSONAS THIS SIDE OF PLANET JUPITER. HOW ...

Mercury Rev, Sparklehorse: Mercury Rev/Sparklehorse: Irving Plaza, New York City

Live Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, September 1999

HERE'S A TRACK worth savoring: Veteran modern-rock band collaborates with Chemical Brothers and incorporates into their music bowed saw, arching melodies, and a gaggle of ...

Tricky: Juxtapose (Island)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, September 1999

IT ONLY SEEMS like Tricky is making the same album every time out. 1996's Nearly God stripped out whatever commercial possibilities Maxinquaye's paradigmatic trip-hop held; ...

Death In Vegas: The Dead Boys

Interview by Simon Reynolds, Spin, October 1999

COMING OUT OF THE ART-ROCK CLOSET, DEATH IN VEGAS SHED DANCE BEATS FOR SINISTER, TRIPPED-OUT PSYCHEDELIA. BUT THEIR SNEAKERS REMAIN THE SAME ...

Ol' Dirty Bastard: Nigga Please (Elektra)

Review by R.J. Smith, Spin, November 1999

THE TRUE opener of this dazzling, daffy album gets buried near the end. Nigga Please should have begun with his mocking yet eerily touching cover ...

Fiona Apple: When The Pawn... (Clean Slate/Epic)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, December 1999

FIONA APPLE presents herself as damaged goods, both a woman wronged and a gleeful wrongdoer. That alone sets her above the teen-pop Mouseketeers; makes her ...

Ol' Dirty Bastard: Law And Disorder

Report by R.J. Smith, Spin, December 1999

OL' DIRTY BASTARD PUTS ON A SHOW — THIS TIME IN COURT ...

Rage Against the Machine: The New Machine Age: Rage Against The Machine: The Battle of Los Angeles (Epic)

Review by R.J. Smith, Spin, December 1999

Kicking and screaming, Rage Against The Machine drag their contradictions into the light. By RJ Smith. ...

Rage Against the Machine: Band Of The Year: Rage Against The Machine

Interview by Eric Weisbard, Spin, January 2000

The funk was deep. The rock was heavy. The politics were thick. Rage against the machine unleashed a rock-rap masterwork and a series of incendiary ...

Goodie Mob: World Party (Laface/Orista)

Review by Simon Reynolds, Spin, January 2000

WHEN A BAND with something to say wants to communicate to the largest number of people, it generally resorts to what's known as "sweetening the ...

Aimee Mann: Catcher In The Wry

Interview by R.J. Smith, Spin, May 2000

She scored with the heartbreaking Magnolia soundtrack, but Aimee Mann isn't gloating just yet ...

Macy Gray, Mos Def: Macy Gray/Mos Def: Roseland Ballroom, New York City

Live Review by Miles Marshall Lewis, Spin, May 2000

IF THERE WAS ever any doubt, the huge plaque onstage honoring the gold status of Mos Def's Black on Both Sides made it clear: The ...

D'Angelo: Radio City Music Hall: New York City

Live Review by Carol Cooper, Spin, June 2000

LIVE PERFORMANCE is where music becomes ceremony, a ritual redefining the performer for his or her audience. Like videos, concerts turn a performer into a ...

Sleater-Kinney: All Hands On The Bad One (Kill Rock Stars)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, June 2000

IT'S TIME TO DO BATTLE for the planet of the apes. On last year's The Hot Rock, Sleater-Kinney suddenly became sheepish about pounding folks over ...

The Great Rave/Jam Band Crossover Syndrome

Report and Interview by Richard Gehr, Spin, August 2000

THE DISCO BISCUITS are onstage at Philadelphia's Trocadero surrounded by the entire contents of their living room: the bong-water stained sofa, a decrepit TV (with ...

Jon Langford, Jim O'Rourke, Wilco: Chicago: Indie City

Report and Interview by Eric Weisbard, Spin, September 2000

Sick of a world ruled by Britney and Backstreet? Visit Chicago: a salt-of-the-earth midwestern town where old-world pleasures like community, cheap rent, cheap beer, gritty ...

Badly Drawn Boy: The Hour of Bewilderbeast (XL/Twisted Nerve)

Review by Barney Hoskyns, Spin, Summer 2000

ENGLAND’S SEARCH for post-Britpop heroes goes on. Following the Oasis implosion, everyone’s looking to the bedsit mavericks to save the day: Summer 2000 saw indie ...

Ludacris, OutKast: OutKast/Ludacris: The Theater at Madison Square Garden, New York

Live Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, June 2001

REMEMBER WHEN hip-hop shows were sloppy mishmashes of mistimed records and ten people bellowing at once? ...

The Avalanches: Since I Left You (Modular Recordings)

Review by Simon Reynolds, Spin, October 2001

IN MUSIC, misery's got a monopoly on credibility — just ask Thom and Trent. A furrowed brow and a tormented soul are essential if you ...

Tori Amos: Don't Mess With Mother Nature

Interview by Will Hermes, Spin, October 2001

Taking shots at male violence, the gun lobby, and Eminem, Tori Amos has made an unlikely covers record — a cross between Sybil and Quadrophenia. ...

Le Tigre: Feminist Sweepstakes (Mr. Lady)

Review by Eric Weisbard, Spin, November 2001

OFTEN radicals get so entrenched they even distrust their own sense of pleasure. But Kathleen Hanna is such a great rocker that at the very ...

The Strokes: England's Creaming…

Profile and Interview by Jason Cohen, Spin, November 2001

…itself over New York City "it" band The Strokes. So who the hell are they? ...

And You Will Know Us By The...: …And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead: Break Stuff… And Send the Bill To Trail Of Dead

Interview by Jason Cohen, Spin, April 2002

AN EVENING with …And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead goes something like this: For dinner, Conrad Keely and Kevin Allen kill ...

DJ Shadow: Head Case

Interview by Will Hermes, Spin, July 2002

NOW THAT MOBY AND FATBOY SLIM HAVE BECOME POP-CULTURE POSTER BOYS, IS IT TIME FOR HIP-HOP MONK JOSH DAVIS, A.K.A. DJ SHADOW, TO CLAIM HIS ...

Jay Z, Kelis, N*E*R*D: N*E*R*D: Irving Plaza, New York City

Live Review by Will Hermes, Spin, September 2002

WHAT do you do when you're a studio rat who's passed the Courvoisier with Busta Rhymes and P. Diddy and logged hits for 'N Sync, ...

Godspeed You! Black Emperor: Yanqui U.X.O. (Constellation)

Review by Will Hermes, Spin, March 2003

GODSPEED'S 1997 debut CD, f#a#?, began with words so eerily prescient that it's a wonder the Montreal band aren't currently being held at Guantánamo Bay. ...

Sigur Ros: The New Ice Age

Interview by Will Hermes, Spin, March 2003

Do you suffer from skammdegispunglyndi? For many Icelanders, the cure for this brand of wintertime depression — in addition to drinking — is making weird ...

Joe Strummer: Tougher Than Tough

Obituary by Vivien Goldman, Spin, April 2003

IT WAS FITTING THAT HIS FINAL LONDON GIG WAS A CONTROVERSIAL benefit for union workers. Though Joe Strummer will be remembered for generations as the ...

Phish: Madison Square Garden, New York City

Live Review by Will Hermes, Spin, April 2003

YEP, the drummer still wears a housedress. The band still pause mid-song for the occasional "silent jam". And the shows still draw more deadlocked whiteys ...

Massive Attack: 100th Window

Review by Will Hermes, Spin, June 2003

BETWEEN U.K. MC Ms. Dynamite's debut and the rhyme battle rumoured to be brewing between Birmingham's Mike "the Streets" Skinner and Brixton's Roots Manuva, 2002 ...

Radiohead: Hail To The Thief

Review by Will Hermes, Spin, June 2003

IT'S ALL RIGHT – you can admit it. When the bedroom lights are out and all you can see are the shooting stars on your ...

The Kills

Profile and Interview by Jason Cohen, Spin, July 2003

WHO: Florida femme fatale "VV" and Englishman "Hotel," chain-smoking vegans with a beatbox and vintage gear, both of whom sing and play guitar. ...

Drive-By Truckers: The Mouth of the South

Profile and Interview by Eric Weisbard, Spin, July 2003

The Drive-By Truckers are hard-ass punk rockers from Alabama by way of Athens, Georgia. They drink too much. They love Lynyrd Skynyrd. And their Southern ...

Ryan Adams: Demolition

Review by Will Hermes, Spin, July 2003

IF ROCK'N'ROLL were high school, Ryan Adams would be the faintly irritating yet firecracker-hot 2001 valedictorian-acing history, kicking it with that cute young chem teacher, ...

Belle And Sebastian: Belle and Sebastian: Dear Catastrophe Waitress (Rough Trade)

Review by Will Hermes, Spin, October 2003

BELLE AND SEBASTIAN are more than a band of underachieving indie-rock layabouts from Glasgow. ...

Spiritualized: Amazing Grace (Spaceman/Sanctuary)

Review by R.J. Smith, Spin, October 2003

Garage rock from Mars ...

Basement Jaxx: Kish Kash

Review by Will Hermes, Spin, November 2003

MAYBE THEY COULD change their names to the Jaxxes. With half-assed rock bands now enjoying all the hype once reserved for half-assed DJ acts, it's ...

Nelly Furtado: Folklore

Review by Will Hermes, Spin, December 2003

POP RADIO is so appalling that even a modest charmer like Nelly Furtado's 'I'm Like a Bird' makes you kneel in gratitude. ...

Dizzee Rascal: Boy in Da Corner (XL/Matador)

Review by Will Hermes, Spin, February 2004

Speaking in Tongues: East London rap star Dizzee Rascal's war of words ...

Elliott Smith: You've Got To Hide Your Love Away

Retrospective and Interview by R.J. Smith, Spin, February 2004

WHEN ELLIOTT SMITH played Los Angeles in the fall of 2002, after more than a year of semi-seclusion, he didn't look so good. His hands ...

Bright Eyes: Northsix, Brooklyn, New York

Live Review by Will Hermes, Spin, December 2004

WHEN CONOR OBERST WAS 16, he fronted a promising, alt-rockin' band calledCommander Venus. They signed an ill-fated contract — at one unfortunate juncture, the band ...

Pavement: Gold Standardz: Pavement: Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain: LA's Desert Origins (Matador)

Review by Will Hermes, Spin, December 2004

Pavement's second album gets classic-rock props ...

Queens Of The Stone Age: Queens of the Stone Age: Lullabies to Paralyze (Interscope)

Review by Will Hermes, Spin, April 2005

Josh Homme, all alone, explores his artistic side ...

Coldplay: Dodge Music Center, Hartford, Connecticut

Live Review by Will Hermes, Spin, October 2005

Even after The New York Times declared them "the most insufferable band of the decade" (does that include the new INXS?), Coldplay continue to exist ...

Pearl Jam: Eddie Vedder

Interview by Will Hermes, Spin, October 2005

Reflecting on Seattle's dangerous heyday and Pearl Jam's legacy, the grunge icon comes clean ...

Hot Chip: Coming on Strong (Astralwerks)

Review by Will Hermes, Spin, January 2006

TIMMY THOMAS' 1972 beat-boxdriven hit 'Why Can't We Live Together?' is a paradigm of how machine rhythms can make the human voice sound simultaneously stalwart ...

Hot Chip: The League of Very Ordinary Gentlemen

Profile and Interview by Dorian Lynskey, Spin, February 2008

Everybody seems to love Hot Chip's catchy, endearing dance pop. But are these bookish Brits ready to love everybody back? ...

Vampire Weekend: Vampire Weekend (XL)

Review by Will Hermes, Spin, June 2008

AT 1:32 A.M. last Valentine's Day, a demo titled 'Oxford Comma' by a band of Columbia University buds was posted on the blog Music for ...

My Bloody Valentine: "It's The Opposite Of Rock 'N' Roll"

Retrospective by Simon Reynolds, Spin, August 2008

In 1991, My Bloody Valentine released one of modern rock's most influential albums, then mysteriously imploded trying to surpass it. On the eve of their ...

James Blake

Interview by Dorian Lynskey, Spin, February 2011

Home sweet home: London ...

Arctic Monkeys: AM

Review by Jon Young, Spin, September 2013

EARLY EXPOSURE to the fifth Arctic Monkeys record might betray a few symptoms of Pretentious Artiste Syndrome – frontman Alex Turner has name-checked Dr. Dre ...

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