A blog about music from Canada and beyond.

Long reads, short reads and bite-size bits.

Music Review: Drake - Views

Music Review: Drake - Views
The Toronto rapper and singer has never been shy about his feelings his hometown or the women in his life. Both subjects dominate Drake’s eclectic fourth studio album, originally to be called Views from the Six in reference to his beloved Toronto. The cover shows him sitting atop the CN Tower. Then there’s “Weston Road Flows” and “9,” where he claims to have flipped Toronto on its head. While he’s unequivocal about his hometown, his relationships with women are less certain. On the island-flavored “Too Good,” his “he-said-she-said” collaboratio...
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Music Review: Various artists - I Saw the Light

Music Review: Various artists - I Saw the Light
British actor Tom Hiddleston shines as Hank Williams in the new biopic. Coached by country star Rodney Crowell, Tom sings convincing renditions of Hank’s classics, including “Jambalaya,” “Move It On Over” and “Hey Good Lookin’.” The soundtrack also features songs by such period stars as Eddy Arnold, Eartha Kitt and Jo Stafford.
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Music Review: Kacy & Clayton - Strange Country

Music Review: Kacy & Clayton - Strange Country
Clayton Linthicum and his second cousin Kacy Anderson hail from southern Saskatchewan, but Clayton’s guitar and Kacy’s voice are rooted in the British folk styles of Davey Graham and Sandy Denny. With songs like the beguiling title track and the dreamy “If You Ask How I’m Keeping,” it’s an intoxicating, otherworldly brew. 
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Music Review: Beyoncé - Lemonade

Music Review: Beyoncé - Lemonade
It’s easy to see Beyoncé’s new album as an angry response to a broken marriage. Some songs seem to confirm rumors of alleged infidelities and an impending split with rapper husband Jay-Z. “We built sand castles that washed away,” Beyoncé sings wistfully, before venting “What a wicked way to treat the girl that loves you.” Anger is most visceral on “Don’t Hurt Yourself,” a raw number featuring Jack White’s bluesy guitar. But the album also explores themes of hope, forgiveness and redemption and includes “Freedom,” her Black Lives Matter anthem w...
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Music Review: Rufus Wainwright - Take All of My Loves: 9 Shakespeare Sonnets

Music Review: Rufus Wainwright - Take All of My Loves: 9 Shakespeare Sonnets
Grandiosity comes naturally to Rufus. The acclaimed singer-songwriter has an unabashed love of dramatic music. In 2007, he recreated Judy Garland’s legendary 1961 Carnegie Hall concert. His most recent album is a recording of his own opera Prima Donna. Now Rufus has embraced his love of Shakespeare, something he’s explored a little before. Actors Carrie Fisher, William Shatner and Helena Bonham Carter recite sonnets, while members of the BBC Symphony Orchestra back Rufus and his assortment of guest vocalists. Rufus and Austrian coloratura sopra...

Movie Review: Purple Rain

Movie Review: Purple Rain
PURPLE RAIN Directed by Albert Magnoli.   Purple Rain resembles its provocative singing star, Prince: it delights in breaking rules and raising eyebrows. While such anarchic behavior is the root of rock music, it is rare in rock films. They usually offer a safe and predictable storyline that is little more than background to the soundtrack. But Purple Rain cleverly integrates its sultry electronic funk music with a story of unexpected depth and emotion. It receives great support from Prince himself, the 24-year-old pop ...
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Music Review: Prince and the Revolution - Purple Rain

Music Review: Prince and the Revolution - Purple Rain
Prince is one of pop's true originals. His credo of eroticism and his nervy, androgynous pose have made the 24-year-old Minneapolis native a constroversial figure. Radio stations often ban his sexually explicit songs from airplay, but his music is an ingenious blend of keyboard funk and guitar rock. Purple Rain is a kaleidoscope of pulsating sounds and velvety textures. It opens with the cheerful chaos of "Let's Go Crazy," in which Prince preaches hedonism in the face of impending apocalypse. "Darling Nikki," about a steamy encounter ...
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