‘Enemy Mine’ by Swan Lake

Created in 2006, Swan Lake's members are affiliated with the other Canadian bands known as Wolf Parade, Sunset Rubdown, Destroyer and New Pornographers. Their new album starts out with a troubadour-ish song that takes you back to renaissance era reminiscent of Tchaikovsky's "Swan Lake," from where the band takes their name.

KRUA’s top 5, must-listen album picks of 2012

KRUA's Felipe Godoy reviews the top five albums of 2012.

‘Bangerz’ by Miley Cyrus

It’s just sad. It’s sad to see someone with talent, especially very specific talents, take them in a direction that doesn’t coincide with their capabilities. And it happens for a variety of reasons, this kind of reaction formation. In the case of Miley Cyrus, she’s going through a musical reactionary period that harks back to the title of the debut album from the Arctic Monkeys, “Whatever You Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not”: You say I’m a country star? I rap. You say I’m a Disney child? I party. You say I’m a role model for young girls everywhere? I twerk.

‘Seeing Sounds’

Synesthesia: n. A condition in which one type of stimulation evokes the sensation of another, as when the hearing of a sound produces the visualization of a color. This is what N*E*R*D means by "Seeing Sounds." Of course, synesthesia is the only logical step after a month and a half Glowing in the Dark on tour with Kanye West.

Linkin Park’s new release disappoints, again

Linkin Park may have lost their way, but they appear to be trying to get back on track with their newest album, “Living Things.”...

Iron & Wine’s new album revives listeners with new sound

Iron & Wine sucks. Anyone who has purchased an Iron & Wine album was fooled into doing so by sole member Sam Beam. The best bit of trickery Beam has is to make the music interesting enough to buy during the first half-listen. See, Iron & Wine doesn't suck because the music is bad.

‘Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)’ is still locked and loaded

There was a day when “The Chronic” reigned supreme. Dr. Dre brought the synthesizer to hip-hop and no Los Angeles club would be the same for years to come. In the 80’s, socially conscious hip-hop, like De La Soul’s “3 Feet High and Rising” and A Tribe Called Quest’s “The Low End Theory,” dominated the rap landscape. Groups like N.W.A rose to prominence with “Straight Outta Compton” and two members from that group, Ice Cube and Dr. Dre, would find fame with critically and commercially acclaimed solo releases.

‘Fleet Foxes’

Think Band of Horses if they secluded themselves to cabin deep in the woods. Think Grizzly Bear but less obscure, or how about the Beach Boys but instead of surfing or chasing girls they're climbing mountains and growing beards. Somewhere in there are Fleet Foxes.

ViViD’s first studio album, ‘Infinity,’ an earful of Japanese goodness

ViViD proves that you don’t need a studio album to get noticed. The five member rock band from Japan got together in March of...

Cursive crafts dynamic new sound in ‘Happy Hollow’

Cursive, an indie rock band with tours spanning three continents, struck a chord with critics with its 2004 album, "The Ugly Organ," and received a crescendo of applause from alternative music magazines like Spin, Blender and Alternative Press for its 2006 album "Happy Hollow" .

Toro y Moi: Bull and Me is growing up

Toro y Moi has mellowed out since he started his career in 2009. The album "Anything in Return" is an electronic melodic calamity of synthesizers and drum kits. The third LP from singer and producer Chazwick Bundick, one of the founding fathers of the 80s-orientated chillwave genre, forces listeners to mentally transport themselves to the days when cassette tapes were preferred and colorful knee-high socks were adored.

Lupe Fiasco too ‘Cool’ to get caught up in materialism

Lupe is killin' it. "Food and Liquor" was hot; "The Cool" is fire. He didn't have much time to do it, but somehow, between albums, Lupe Fiasco became a beast on the mic. Collectively the beats are more creative and of higher quality than he's had before. For every good line on Lupe Fiasco's first album, there's a great verse on his second.

UAA students accepted to Warped Tour

If you follow the Warped Tour and live in Anchorage, you’ve probably heard of PJ Franco & The Burnouts. And if you don't follow...

‘Youth Novels’

If Bjork had a little sister that was shy and wasn't crazy, she'd be Lykke Li. In May, Lykke released a four song EP entitled Little Bit. It was a refreshing collection of tunes full of intricate percussion, minimalist instrumentation and Lykke's breathtaking, candy coated vocals.

‘Beating Back the Claws of the Cold’

Thank you, George Harrison. On behalf of me and perhaps The Pica Beats as well, thank you for making the sitar cool in pop music. Like Harrison's incorporation of Indian music to The Beatles, many bands have created innovative and interesting sounds by blending genres, for instance: Gogol Bordello, Flogging Molly, Beirut, and now The Pica Beats.

Joel Piper is ‘Dying to Live’

Former Confide drummer/vocalist Joel Piper is back with his first full length solo album, titled “Dying to Live,” and it’s nothing like you’d expect. If...

Puddle of mediocre

Some artists release a cover in their album buried as a hidden track, but rarely do they release a full album of covers. Puddle...

Rapper Sage Francis fights change on Copper Gone

After a long and tense hiatus, Rhode Island-based emcee Sage Francis is back with his much-anticipated LP, “Copper Gone.” His previous album, “L(i)fe,” was...

Francois Virot ‘Yes or No’

With digital music being so widespread and accessible, it's becoming harder for bands to make money. It's probably safe to say that this is directly correlated with the fact that many bands are setting up home recording studios and not forking over the money to rent out a professional studio.

Album Review: “Coexist” by The xx

Until iTunes displayed The xx’s album on its “new featured music” page, the talented music group never really had a spotlight. The British indie...

Otep’s new album a smashing success

Album: Smash the Control Machine Artist: Otep Record label: Victory Otep is an interesting beast. The band, named for the first name of the lead singer, is...

Lester & The Hoax

Q: Who are the band members on the recording? And who are the band members performing at the CD release? A: I played all the instruments on the CD. The Hoax live line up includes me on guitar and percussion and my friends Ted and Jeff from the Moon Knights and iLeah from Miss Midnight Ago Go.

MellowHype raises the bar

Sharing hundreds of blunts and stages as a member of OFWGKTA with infamous rapper Tyler the Creator gave rising rap duo MellowHype the knowledge of what rap fans want to hear. No longer destined to merely be the mid-stage lurkers at shows, MellowHype's new album "Numbers," released Oct. 9, establishes them as serious contenders in the rap industry.

Trevor Hall’s self-titled album uplifts the weary spirit

ALBUM: "Trevor Hall" ARTIST: Trevor Hall RECORD LABEL: Vanguard Records Trevor Hall’s self-titled album is a good album to just chill out to, with its easy lyrics...

‘Secondhand Rapture’ a clutter of songs

Remember the song that played during the season three teaser-trailer for “Game of Thrones?” The intense drums and haunting lyrics made that one of...

Taylor Swift chosen for The Hunger Games

Taylor Swift has been center stage in contemporary country music for roughly five years now. Originally a Myspace music phenomena, Swift skyrocketed to fame...

Lester & The Hoax ‘I Want You to Haunt Me’

Lester Smiley brings his low-fi catchy tunes back home. A year ago he said goodbye to the group The Moon Knights, a staple at underground artist events in and around Anchorage, and journeyed to Portland. Smiley now returns with the band, Lester and the Hoax, and a new album 'I Want You to Haunt Me'.

Good new rap music Vol. 2

If you think “Yeezus” is trash purely because Kanye didn’t give Chief Keef a full verse on “Hold My Liquor,” keep reading.  Young L –...

Redman transcends bland beats with wry rhymes

Redman is better than your favorite rapper. This isn't an opinion. This is an objective fact. Easily one of the most consistent MCs out there, Redman recorded an obviously good album with "Red Gone Wild." Even after his six-year hiatus, was there ever really any doubt? Though he's never been known for being clean, Redman took his triple-extra-grimy style down two notches when "Doc's Da Name 2000" came out in 1998.

Continually raising the bar

This week we reviewed the new Andrew Bird album "Break It Yourself," and for all you indie heads out there that were fortunate enough to see him perform live over at the PAC back in November; this album screams you.