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Staff Picks of 2016: Richard Sanford

Top 10 Albums

10. Miranda Lambert, Weight of These Wings (RCA Records)
In a field with lots of competition, this was the mainstream country record that dug its hooks in me the deepest this year. Songs about dreams of escape and the consolation of fantasy (as well as when those things come up short), along with the dangers of routine and habit—all strapped to the …


Psychic TV
Alienist

Genesis Breyer P-Orridge’s long-running Psychic TV collective indulges and tweaks its classicist tendencies with their latest report from drilling into

Bobby Kapp and Matthew Shipp
Cactus

Pianist Matthew Shipp has been a cornerstone of modern free jazz for decades. Drummer Bobby Kapp is less well known, but since a flurry of activity

Darcy James Argue’s Secret Society
Real Enemies

With Real Enemies, composer/conductor Darcy James Argue uses his big band, Secret Society, to peel back the layers of modern

Pill
Convenience

Pill’s debut album, Convenience, is a grab-you-by-the-throat look at authenticity: what it means, why fighting for it is important, and how

Nels Cline
Lovers

Guitarist/composer Nels Cline’s Lovers is both a sharply focused statement and an expansive wide-lens view of the landscape of the human heart. With his

Maria Usbeck
Amparo

Maria Usbeck’s solo debut, Amparo, is a record of subtle hooks and profound but complicated joy and wistfulness. Recorded with Chairlift’s Caroline

Hello Dollface
Warrior of Light

Hello Dollface’s new self-released record, Warrior of Light, takes its name from the inspirational writings of Paulo Coelho. It shares similar thematic material

Alarm Will Sound
Presents Modernists

Alarm Will Sound, the 21-piece chamber orchestra led by Alan Pierson, brings its full power to bear on Alarm Will Sound Presents Modernists. These six

Eric Ambel
Lakeside

Eric Ambel’s new record Lakeside, his first since 2005’s Knucklehead, is named for the beloved roots rock locus in New York he co-owned and, in the cover

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