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Film, "Big Star": A Story of a Band You've Heard, Even if You Haven't Heard Of

"Big Star": A Story of a Band You've Heard, Even if You Haven't Heard Of

The band Big Star was a prime example of a "critic's darling": Rock critics adored it, but the group sold very few records, and you probably think you don't know any of its music. Drew DeNicola and Olivia Mori's documentary…
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Music, All Shook Down

R.I.P. Andy Hummel, Big Star Bassist

Four months after the death of Big Star mastermind Alex Chilton, the bassist for that revered Memphis power-pop group, Andy Hummel, has died as well. Hummel, according to MTV, had battled cancer for two years. He was 59 years old…
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Music, All Shook Down

R.I.P. Alex Chilton

Maybe Alex Chilton, dead at 59 of a heart attack, would recoil at the fond remembrances of him now sneezing out through the digital ether: Salutes from the floor of the House of Representatives, odes from pretty much everyone on…
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Music, All Shook Down

SXSW Roundup: Thursday AM, RIP Alex Chilton

I spent most of SXSW's opening day en route (or, I should say, en airport....) but the big news on Wednesday wasn't about any specific show, but about a performer who would no longer be in Austin this week.…
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Calendar, Night&Day Chuck <i>Y</i> Cheese

Chuck Y Cheese

Chuck Prophet's music covers rock and blues, and then veers unexpectedly into dance-pop with vintage keyboards. There's Warren Zevon, Lee Hazlewood, Lou Reed, and Tom Petty in his voice, but he thinks he's Alex Chilton. The man on the recordings…
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Music, Blonde Redhead, Sunset Rubdown and More SF Show Previews

Blonde Redhead, Sunset Rubdown and More SF Show Previews

Given their respective noise-rock and industrial pedigrees, guitarist Duane Denison (Jesus Lizard, Hank III, Tomahawk) and bassist/programmer Paul Barker (Ministry and related side projects the Revolting Cocks, Lard, and 1000 Homo DJs) could have indulged in all manner of experimental…
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Music, Reviewed Josh Rouse

Josh Rouse

With just a glance it's clear that Josh Rouse, like other lesser lights in white-boy roots songwriting, makes much ado about his hometown. But Rouse's literate, melodic writing bears more of a resemblance to the work of '70s pop songwriters…
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Music, Pop Philosophy

Music Lesson

Big stars "I think Alex Chilton's got a thing for 12-year-olds," a guy next to me mumbled during the recent Big Star "reunion" show at the Fillmore. The claim seemed plausible, considering the way Chilton led his pals -- original…
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Music, Reviewed Nikki Sudden

Nikki Sudden

Who the fuck is Nikki Sudden? And why would a small indie label in Bloomington, Ind., nearly go bankrupt reissuing 10 of his albums from the '80s that never sold well in the first place? Unless you're eternally tuned to…
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Music, Teenage Fanclub

Teenage Fanclub

Glasgow's Teenage Fanclub is a textbook case of a band that fell victim to its own early brilliance, as well as the mercilessness of circumstance and fashion. In the early '90s TFC established itself as an indie rock icon, one…
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Music, <B>The New Amsterdams</B><BR>

The New Amsterdams

While the New Amsterdams are a Get Up Kids offshoot, the band doesn't belong to the same dreaded indie subgenre as its emocore parent. Instead, songwriter Matthew Pryor's side project has plenty in common with that harbinger to all things…
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Calendar, Night&Day

Night & Day

Wednesday July 7 Take Me to the River The warmth generated by Yaelisa & Solera Flamenco Dance and the salsa band Charanson is enough to suggest Spain in summertime, if only fleetingly. Not since last summer's "Caminos Flamencos" concert, when…
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Music,

Americana Gothic

Savor whatever sort of refinement you wish in this culture of ours; I say that American art (musical, literary, cinematic, plastic -- hell, even culinary) has distinguished itself with creepiness. Perhaps because the Puritans, our old cultural balls-and-chains, were such…
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Music,

Bubble Burst

Poptopia! Various Artists (Rhino) Everything made sense until the Beatles broke up. Rock's audience expanded explosively at precisely the same time the music lost its popular and aesthetic center. The Beatles had demonstrated that what was popular could be art;…
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Music,

Recordings

The Jackson 5 Pre-History: The Lost Steeltown Recordings (Inverted/Brunswick) Alex Chilton 1970 (Ardent) "I wish I wish I was a fish/ I would jump about just like trout." That's a poem I wrote when I was 5 years old that…
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Music,

Recordings

Sleeper Smart (Arista) Listen to the spark of the bite-size guitar implosions, the reconstituted Wire drum kicks, the cheeky cockney delivery: Yes, it would be easy to dismiss Sleeper as the latest commodity to roll off the U.K.'s new wave…
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