In September of 2016 my wife and I decided to experiment with TV streaming services. Our Comcast cable bill was too high and we wanted to save a little money on our monthly budgets. At the time I had only heard of Sling TV. The balance of live sports, streaming quality, and diverse programming set off a cord cutting endeavor that we did not wrap up until this spring, when we finally found the best streaming service for cord cutters in the Philadelphia area.
In 2017 I hit an unexpected run where every piece of great new music that I heard came from Australia. I was surprised by how diverse and talented the current Australian music scene is. Holy Holy, Tash Sultana, Courtney Barnett, and Jen Cloher, are just a few of the Australian musicians and bands that I love listening to. Another Aussie group, The Paper Kites, are one of the best folk rock bands going right now.
Agency is an R&B duo whose background and identity are a mystery, but their music is golden. Their new EP Exponents is a beautiful five-song effort that draws from different elements of R&B to create dynamic music.
I do not often stumble across a musician who lists John Barry and Tears for Fears amongst their influences. Finding out that a wide range of inspiration was responsible for Kicklighter’s Paper Planes, Vol. 1 was less surprising. It is a unique album that channels different styles in a way that befits their unique creator.
The Creed II trailer has been released. The eighth installment in the Rocky franchise will give movie fans what they want: a fight between Ivan Drago’s son and Adonis Creed.
Wagonwheel Blues, the debut record of Philadelphia indie band The War On Drugs, turns ten years old today. At the time, the album was a project started by four relatively unknown musicians. One of those artists was current The War On Drugs frontman Adam Granduciel. Another was Kurt Vile, who left the band after Wagonwheel Blues was... Continue Reading →
Blues sideman Matt “Guitar” Murphy passed away on Friday. He played with Howlin’ Wolf, Etta James, Memphis Slim, Ike Turner, and a slew of other incredible musicians during his well-traveled career. Murphy’s most famous gig was as Jake and Elwood’s guitar player in the 1980 movie The Blues Brothers. In 1978 Dan Aykroyd and John Belushi... Continue Reading →
Few music scenes are as eclectic as Austin's. There is no one type of music that dominates the Texas city's jukebox. As is the case with their hometown, the band Good Field does channel just one type of indie rock. There is a blend of styles in their new album, Surface Tension. The result is a good record with standout moments that show off seasoned musicianship.
Ocean’s 8 is an enjoyable movie that revisits a familiar premise: an all-star cast gets together to pull off a ridiculous heist. Even with a few drawbacks that don’t quite measure up to Ocean’s 11-13, Ocean’s 8 is exactly what I expected – a fun heist movie.
Mark A. Robinson is a theatre writer and critic. He is the author of The World of Musicals, The Encyclopedia of Television Theme Songs, and The Disney Song Encyclopedia (with Thomas Hischak). He has also written for Playbill and contributed to liner notes of revivals of Fiddler on the Roof and My Fair Lady. Robinson is currently a contributor to BroadwayDirect and... Continue Reading →