Category Archives: Music

Album Review: Speak Low If You Speak Love – Nearsighted

At the start of a new year, one can’t help but reflect on what’s going on in their life. I’ve got a fairly long drive to get to work, which means a lot of time every day to just listen to music and let my mind wander. Several weeks ago, I added Speak Low If You Speak Love’s Nearsighted to my library for these drives, and since then it has been an essential part of these gloomy winter commutes. I was already familiar with Ryan Scott Graham’s songwriting from Speak Low’s previous album, Everything but What You Need, but that didn’t prepare me for this album, which took what we already knew Graham could do and elevated it all into something truly special.

Nearsighted is an example of how self-reflection can help you to make sense of yourself and how to move forward from difficult feelings. The album opens with “Have I Changed,” a song in which Graham is trying to figure out why it is that he feels so skeptical and apathetic. The song opens with ambient synthesizers rather than the familiar acoustic guitar of his previous work, already signaling a departure from his previous sound. As the song goes on, the instrumentation builds, adding guitar and piano before stripping itself back for the song’s thesis, “I cannot put my thumb on when I went so numb.” From there, he spends the rest of the album trying to figure that out.  Continue reading Album Review: Speak Low If You Speak Love – Nearsighted

Looking Back: Our Favorite Albums of 2017

2017 was…a year. It was a year of challenges and, at times, particularly difficult news to swallow for many of us in our music communities. However, we banded together and found hope through all the adversity we faced. Music is the backdrop to these defining moments each year. Check out some of our staff picks for album of the year below.

Spin – Tiger’s Jaw
“This might be my favorite Tiger’s Jaw release yet. Brianna has come more front-and-center this time around, recording the first song she’s written for the band, ‘June,’ which might be the best song off the album, if I’m being entirely honest. This album struck the perfect balance of call-backs to their older styles, while still signaling a noticeable progression in the band’s growth. Don’t sleep on this album, or this band. You’re missing out if you haven’t downloaded a copy yet. -Tori  Continue reading Looking Back: Our Favorite Albums of 2017

The Return of Darren Criss

On December 15th, Darren Criss played a show at the Globe Theater in downtown Los Angeles in which he took the audience on a journey through his life of songwriting, acting, and performing. Spanning a little over a decade of work in the public eye, the concert showcased never-released favorites like “The Muse,” revitalized a few songs from the catalogue of his time on Glee, and even reached back for classics from his college theater company’s viral sensation A Very Potter Musical, in which Criss played Harry Potter himself.

The concert also doubled as a debut party for his latest release, the Homework EP. Homework is Criss’s first solo project since the self-released Human EP seven years ago, which he wrote at fifteen and published at 22.

Consequently, it was exactly seven years ago—almost down to the day—that I had last seen Criss play in L.A., at the Roxy in Hollywood on December 18th, 2010.  Continue reading The Return of Darren Criss