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Fate Is the Hunter

For those of you already familiar with Kate Earl ($8), we apologize. For those of you who are hearing her for the first time, you're welcome. This Alaskan-born singer-songwriter brings a gritty, mellow, soulful, retro vibe to her self-titled sophomore album. A truly gifted story-teller,... [More]

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Gin Wigmore: Holy Smoke

While we like to think we're privy to the goods before the rest of the world, here in the good old U. S. of A., sometimes we're slightly behind in the music realm. While Gin Wigmore: Holy Smoke ($10) was originally released in New Zealand... [More]

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Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings: I Learned The Hard Way

It seems a strange thing to be timeless yet old school, but that's just what Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings: I Learned The Hard Way ($8) manages to do. On their fourth full-length studio album, you get soul the way it was meant to be... [More]

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First Aid Kit: The Big Black and The Blue

When we were 15, all we did with our sister was fight over who could use the bathroom first. Johanna and Klara Södeberg seem to harmonize as teen sisters much better than we did. Together, the sisters form the band, First Aid Kit, a Swedish... [More]

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Goldfrapp: Head First

Sugary sweet dance beats with a hint of pop, folk and synthesizer are what you'll find in Goldfrapp: Head First ($7), the fifth album from this English power duo. A listen will have you shaking off 80s flashbacks, followed by feet tapping then booty moving.... [More]

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Patti Smith Group - Easter

We've delved into the heart punk-poetess Patti Smith before, and because the time is right, we'd like to recommend her 1978 album, Easter ($9) to all loyal OB readers out there. In her third full release, Smith lets out her power and glory in epic... [More]

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VV Brown Travelling Like the Light

So it's time to give The Fame Monster some much needed rest and you're not sure when Winehouse will quit the elective surgeries and get in the studio again... Enter VV Brown Travelling Like the Light ($8) to satisfy your need to dance, cry and... [More]

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Interpreting the Masters, Vol. 1

So, chances are, you don't list Hall & Oates among your top fave artists. However, it's also pretty likely that you know most of the words to their numerous hits (like Maneater, come on!). So, eschew the bad 80s hair and strange homoerotic vibe (are... [More]

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She & Him: Volume Two

Zoey Deschanel = She. M. Ward = Him. Together, they comprise the retro-inspired music duo, She & Him. Their latest effort, Volume Two ($8), hits stores today, and we're hooked. Deschanel's voice wouldn't be amiss in a 1960's girl group, with her low, distinctively raspy... [More]

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Little Boots: Hands

Who says YouTube just produces stupid cat videos and epic Lady Gaga tributes? YouTube songstress Little Boots just released her debut, Hands ($11), and we're here to tell y'all that it's pure Brit pop goodness, inflected with Kylie Minogue-esque beats. A little bit trance, a... [More]

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St. Vincent: Actor

You've seen the longing looks, the sideways stares; your iPod longs for some attention now that Mr. iPhone has taken over your music storage. How's about some new material for that old gal to cheer her up? Enter the sophomore album from St. Vincent: Actor... [More]

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Jamie Cullum: The Pursuit

Jamie Cullum's first studio album in four years, The Pursuit, ($13) has Cullum playing no less than four instruments: organ, bass, piano, and guitar. The result is a jazzy, breezy set of songs that fluctuate between intensely personal and brightly pop-inflected - especially the first... [More]

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Zac Brown Band: The Foundation

The Foundation ($12) by the Zac Brown Band is twangy, down home good. Full of complex guitar & fiddle licks and sweet harmonies, ditties like "Sic 'Em On A Chicken," and "Toes" are just plain fun. The album is far from cookie cutter country, and... [More]

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Charlotte Gainsbourg: Irm

French actress & singer Charlotte Gainsbourg's newest album, Irm, ($12) was co-written and produced with Beck, and it's clearly reflected in this eclectic collection of tunes. Our favorite, "La Collectionneuse," features velvety, dissonant piano chords against Gainsbourg's signature whispery speak-singing style. Songs are by turns... [More]

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We Heart Shen & Zhao

We go way back. Well. Actually they have no idea who we are, but we've been fans of Shen Xue and Zhao Hongbo since the Nagano Olympics in 1998. (They're proof, if you needed it, that being in your early or even late thirties does... [More]

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Corinne Bailey Rae: The Sea

After the smash success of her eponymous debut album ("Put Your Records On" was everywhere in 2006), Corinne Bailey Rae just... disappeared. Why? Sadly, her husband passed away unexpectedly, and she retreated for awhile to grieve and write new music. Her newest record, The Sea,... [More]

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Hope for Haiti Now

We're dedicated to filling our music collection with good tunes, and we're all about spending money for a worthy cause, so of course we picked up Hope for Haiti Now ($8). With 20 different songs from artists ranging from Beyoncé to Neil Young, it's well... [More]

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V-Day Gifts: The Player

Valentine's Day: it strikes fear into the hearts of kids with crushes and married-fifty-years types alike. Why? It's just a day... Okay, a day fraught with overblown expectations and way too many stereotypes. That's why, this year, we're presenting gift ideas that will really mean... [More]

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Sweetheart CD

This year's Starbucks Sweetheart CD ($13) is on constant rotation for us right now. The covers of 'love songs' (loosely interpreted) by contemporary artists is a pleasant compilation for head over heels lovebirds, but the mix is also mellow enough for those of us out... [More]

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iKaraoke Microphone

The iKaraoke microphone ($15) may very well be the mother of all iPod accessories (at least until they come up with something that cleans your house). Plug it into your iPod and stereo system aaaaaaand - BOOM you have an instant karaoke machine. The device... [More]

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