Articles by Josh Hurst
The New Pornographers, “Whiteout Conditions”
Nothing here wants for hooks or for energy, but the songs on The New Pornographers’ seventh album all seem flat somehow.
Jessi Colter, “THE PSALMS”
Colter creates music that drones, builds, drifts, and crests, never following familiar emotional beats but instead allowing them to follow their own wild intuitions.
Conor Oberst, “Salutations”
“Salutations” maintains the tattered humanity of its unaccompanied counterpart, but somehow makes it all go down a little smoother.
Spoon, “Hot Thoughts”
There was always bound to be a straight-ahead dance-rock album from Spoon. How could there not be?
Quelle Chris, “Being You Is Great, I Wish I Could Be You More Often”
“Being You” is gnarly and cerebral, the sound of a jittery headspace that’s got room enough for every flight of fancy.
Sampha’s debut is a record with broad appeal and precise vision; a record where listeners can find themselves but also where they’ll spot the auteur’s hand if they really care to look for it.
The xx, “I See You”
The erstwhile minimalists have never made a record that sounds so glossy and full, but there’s not enough production polish in the world to mask the the hurt and the vulnerability at its core.
Run the Jewels, “Run the Jewels 3”
There is immense catharsis in Killer Mike and El-P’s appetite for destruction.
John Legend, “Darkness and Light”
It’s tough to shake the idea that we’re getting the real John Legend for the very first time.
A House Divided: How Barry Moser’s “We Were Brothers” Offers a Way Forward After Trump
The author’s reflections on his relationship with his deeply racist brother make an appeal to our common humanity.
If a sudden shift toward EDM trappings sounds like an awkward fit for an alt-country band, on “FLOTUS,” it plays out as neither sudden nor awkward.
Jim James, “Eternally Even”
The My Morning Jacket frontman’s second solo record is not a hymn to destruction, but an anthem of resolve.
Common, “Black America Again”
Nothing is held back.
Beyond “The Epic”: Four Recent Jazz Releases That Show the Genre’s Range
If you found yourself lost in the cosmos of Kamasi Washington’s triple-LP “The Epic” last year wondering which star to reach for next, 2016 has a few answers for you.
“I Built It to Build It”: Mary Oliver’s Habit of Being
With the essay collection “Upstream,” the lauded poet offers a portrait of herself and the world that is no less shrouded in mystery than her best work.
Leonard Cohen, “You Want It Darker”
Rumors of Leonard Cohen’s desire for death have been greatly exaggerated.
Conor Oberst, “Ruminations”
“Ruminations” is what it claims to be: a series of ponderous reflections that abide and even cultivate solitude, finding the melancholy romance in moments of quiet introspection.
Mick Jenkins, “The Healing Component”
These are songs that tangle with love as a force both personal and political, and with the love of self, the love of God, the love a people must have for one another if any of them are going to last.