Tag Archives: This American Life

Unsolicited Endorsements XXXVIII

Because sometimes you just want friends to tell you about cool things… the Brew House team offers up its weekly mix of author-supported goodness

Music writing: Ann Powers on Mumford & Sons

Mumford & Sons released its second album this week, “Babel”, the follow-up to the out-of-nowhere buzz album, “Sigh No More”, and a perfectly fine and ordinary record that sounds more or less exactly like its predecessor.

The Mumford & Sons dichotomy has long fascinated me. Marcus Mumford and his friends make what is essentially bluegrass pop—big and layered songs that always seem to start slow and end with booming crescendos. It is music that is seemingly loved by a rather substantial chunk of folks between the ages of 16 and 35. Young professional urbanites. Frat boys. Suburban teenagers. Feminist careerists. (OK. That last one is a major assumption. Deal with it.)

But this is also a buzzband that is, by and large, loathed by critics and hipster tastemakers like Vice and Pitchfork—a band that treads in the same “bigger-than-thou” territory that U2 occupied in the late 80s; the same overly sentimental plot of land that Dave Matthews claimed in the mid to late 90s.

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