New Reviews: Phish, Yo La Tengo, BLK JKS and More

September 8th, 2009 by Rolling Stone Leave a reply »

Photo: Crothers/FilmMagic

Leading this week’s horde of New Reviews are Phish, who — 25 years into their storied jamtastic career — have delivered what Rolling Stone considers their best album yet with Joy. A long hiatus deprived Phans of the Vermont quartet of new music for four years, but Phish more than make up for their absence with their newest disc, which features 10 songs the band debuted during their reunion tour this summer. Joy serves almost as redemption for guitarist Trey Anastasio, who spent much of the hiatus recovering from assorted addictions, and many of the songs, which feature Anastasio’s longtime songwriting partner Tom Marshall, reflect Trey’s struggles in recent years.

Rolling Stone’s Will Hermes awarded Joy a four-star review in our new issue, writing, “Overall, Joy seems less about ambition than about generosity — specifically to the group’s devoted fans. As Anastasio pledges on the title track, ‘We want you to be happy, ’cause this is your song too.’ ” Steve Lillywhite, the mastermind producer behind Phish’s previous best studio album, 1996’s Billy Breathes, also contributes to Joy. Album highlights include bassist Mike Gordon’s metareggae jam “Sugar Shack” and the rocking “Backwards Down the Number Line.” As Rolling Stone previously reported, deluxe box versions of Joy will contain a bonus album called Party Time.

New Jersey trio Yo La Tengo are also celebrating a 25th anniversary this year, and their new album Popular Songs is due this week. Led by married couple Ira Kaplan and Georgia Hubley, Yo La Tengo show no signs of slowing down as they pass the quarter-century mark, as Popular Songs earned a three-and-a-half star rating from Rolling Stone’s Christian Hoard. The album ranges from uptempo, string-laden...

Article Source: Rolling Stone : Rock and Roll Daily


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