Articles by

Madison Bloom

LIVE REVIEW: The Glenn Branca Ensemble @ St. Vitus

Glenn Branca didn’t want people to dance to his music. “I want them to sit there and be blown away,” he once said in an interview. No one was seated at Brooklyn’s St. Vitus Bar on Sunday, where the...

LIVE REVIEW: Man Man @ Brooklyn Bowl

Man Man’s tech rider must read like a sideshow’s inventory. 6 sparkly purple capes 5 bouquets of paper roses 2 black boxing gloves 4 sets of keys 1 human skeleton (authenticity optional) 2 white fur coats 1 taxidermied deer...

LIVE REVIEW: Landlady @ Nublu 151

Nublu 151 looks like the inside of Satan’s jewel box. Kaleidoscopic projections swirl on the walls and a dangling disco ball takes the place of a wind-up ballerina. But it’s the pervasive red and blue lighting that really lends...

LIVE REVIEW: Young Jesus, IAN SWEET @Park Church Co-Op

“There were certain things about my Christian upbringing that I liked. Others, not so much.” The irony that John Rossiter’s band is playing in a Lutheran church has not been lost on the Young Jesus frontman. Surely the crucifix...

LIVE REVIEW: Public Memory @ Mercury Lounge

I’ve never felt more old or useful than at last night’s Public Memory show. After getting startled by the opening clang of a crash cymbal (who could ever anticipate drums at a rock concert?) and bolting away from the...

LIVE REVIEW: Told Slant, Lily Konigsberg @ Park Church Co-op

As someone who’s spent little time in them, it is strange how familiar old churches smell. They smell like warm dust, wood, and maple syrup—like a childhood home you’ve never stepped foot in before. It’s a combination of aromas...

LIVE REVIEW: The Beths, Godcaster @ Alphaville

If you wear a fringe-sleeved shirt onstage, you’re bound to get it tangled in your tuning knobs—but this is of little concern to Judson Kolk. The guitarist and lead singer of Philadelphia rock outfit Godcaster flits around so swiftly,...

ONLY NOISE: Like A Summer Thursday

One of my favorite descriptions of summer, particularly its languid, melancholy months, comes from Don DeLillo’s first novel, Americana: “Summer unfolds slowly,” DeLillo writes, “a carpeted silence rolling out across expanding steel, and the days begin to rhyme, distance...

ONLY NOISE: Glenn Branca’s Final Ascension

I wound up at the Kitchen sort of by mistake. It was a Tuesday – February 23rd, 2016 to be precise. It had been a year since the worst week of my life, and sitting at my desk after...

ONLY NOISE: Punk Rock Mom

“Punk Rock Mom” was a distinction of honor my mother appointed to herself, and though the title mortified me on more than one occasion, she’d well earned it. She was the one helming the two-hour, round trip commute between...

ONLY NOISE: Waterloo

Waterloo always sounded like an exotic place to me, an English garden oasis dotted with fountains and plum trees and those little stone statues of naked angel-babies. The name suggested a swan pond, croquet matches, and crustless triangle sandwiches...

ONLY NOISE: An Audience of None

In what world does this sound like a good time? You are in a dark room, surrounded by drunks you don’t know, and some you know too well. Your favorite song is playing, only it’s a compressed, simplified version...

ONLY NOISE: Adult Entertainment

In 1997, filmmaker Paul Thomas Anderson was racking up a lot of “firsts.” He released his first major feature, Boogie Nights, which garnered his first Oscar nomination. Moreover, Boogie Nights was the first widely celebrated Hollywood film about the...

ONLY NOISE: When You Walk

There is certain music that you share with close friends and family. Music that scores the first dance at your wedding, albums you recommend to your sister, and songs that make your dinner party mix. There is music that...

ONLY NOISE: Let Them Eat CupcakKe

You don’t have to be intimately familiar with Chicago rapper CupcakKe to glean that her work might be sexual in nature – if titles like “Deepthroat” and Cum Cake don’t tip you off, I’m not sure what will – but...

ONLY NOISE: Marjorie’s

On Sunday, in a part of town I rarely get to visit, I sat on a hard wooden bench staring at a wall. From beyond that wall I could hear trumpet, bass, and a drum kit played by invisible...

ONLY NOISE: A Woman Like Your Kind

Today is International Women’s Day, and people are celebrating in many ways. This American Life devoted their entire show on Tuesday night to listening to the stories of five women who were sexually harassed by media executive Don Hazen, giving individual...

ONLY NOISE: Don’t Be In Love With the Autograph

On Monday, Mount Eerie’s Phil Elverum posted a lengthy Reddit AMA explaining his reluctance to sign autographs for fans. The statement was originally published in a pamphlet Elverum hands out to concertgoers in search of his John Hancock. The statement...

ONLY NOISE: Make Me Smile

My dad’s record collection has always been a significant source of music in my life. Its sheer volume and variety has never ceased to amaze me, and that is likely why I write about it so often. Each time...

ONLY NOISE: Love Songs

If you were lucky enough to get them, you must admit: by now the chocolates have been eaten, and the roses are beginning to droop. Maybe there are a few once-bitten, raspberry cream rejects left in that heart-shaped box...

ONLY NOISE: More Specials

Tonight I’m going to do something I’ve wanted to do for a long time. I am going listen to a record, in full, and with all of the lights off, while doing nothing else, so help me god. This...

ONLY NOISE: Mark E. Smith is Dead, Long Live Mark E. Smith!

For years I was certain that the Fall’s 1982 album Hex Enduction Hour was in fact called: Hex Education Hour – perhaps referring to some BBC instructional program for budding witches. An ex had ripped the record onto CD...

ONLY NOISE: Remembering Dolores O’Riordan

When the Cranberries released their debut record Everybody Else Is Doing It, So Why Can’t We? I was not quite four years old. It was 1993, and two household DJs named Mom and Dad would determine my musical tastes...

REVIEW: How to Be a Rock Critic

All Lester Bangs wants to do is listen to his favorite record: Van Morrison’s 1968 masterpiece, Astral Weeks. If only he could find his copy. It’s got to be around here somewhere, beneath the splayed magazines, take-out containers, and...