Band: Mizmor & Thou
Best song:“Subordinate” is one of the best songs of 2022.
Worst song:I like “Manifold Lens” some, but it’s the weakest on the record.

I probably listen to too many overt Christians’ music. I’m a fairly observant secular American Jew (which is to say: I do more than the average Jew and a lot less than the fundamentalists, who probably don’t even consider me Jewish because I have a dog). Read More »

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Band: Lingua Ignota
Worst song:I guess “FUCKING DEATHDEALER” is the weakest, but it is very good

A lot of albums have come out in the 11 months since I last wrote in this space, including plenty that I’ve loved. Am I going to write about a new album? No, I am not. Read More »

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Band: Chelsea Wolfe and Emma Ruth Rundle
Best song:It’s one song.
Worst song:N/A

Childhood memories are weird things. I’ve noted a lot that my earliest memories are of Chicago Stadium, at ‘Hawks games. If I’m being honest, they’re more vignettes and sense memories. The smell of stale beer and piss in the bathrooms or the deafening organ and “De-troit sucks!” chants emanating from the rafters. But, those are the ones that are most vivid because they fit a narrative of hockey-as-family with my dad and I. I have other memories fro that period involving my sister or mom or friends, but those hockey games are both the most vivid and the best to fit my own life’s narrative of my relationship with my dad. Read More »

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Best song: , “I WHO BEND THE TALL GRASSES” is one of the best songs of the year.
Worst song:Nah

I normally keep my work-life out of this space for a variety of reasons, but I do want to get something off my chest because a tweet – it’s always a tweet .

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Band: Liturgy
Best song: “Generation” is terrific
Worst song:It’s legit hard to pick a worst song. It’s a terrific album that should be treated as one work, I think.

I’ve written in this space about my adoration for record labels/companies and the way that these organizations themselves seemed to stoked the scenes in my formative years. Thrill Jockey was one of those labels, being the home of my favorite band, Tortoise.

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Band: Nick Lutsko
Best song: “Software” is my favorite song on the album.
Worst song:I’m least hot on “Streets.”

Because I’m a white man, I watched all of the Peter Jackson Beatles documentary miniseries (my one-line review: It’s compelling, albeit hagiography) this week and it reminded me of the wonder of the Beatles’ work, including their post-band solo stuff.

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Carrie & Lowell Live

Band: Sufjan Stevens
Album: Carrie & Lowell Live
Best song: “Fourth of July” is perfect, but “Should Have Known Better” is a close second.
Worst song:I guess I originally said “Drawn to the Blood” is the least strong song on the record, but I know think it to be “No Shade in the Shadow of the Cross”

A lot of modern non-fundamentalist rabbis treat Jewish liturgy as self help tracts and eschew the strict reading of liturgy or scripture or the mountains of text from centuries of Jewish sages to produce something about the internal broken nature of humanity and of each of us (Sophia Zohar did it beautifully recently). Most progressive rabbis use liturgy as metaphorical toward politics or news or something; last year’s Tisha B’Av service I attended used the burning of the Temple as a metaphor for climate change (the earth is our metaphorical temple and we burned it). I don’t say that to criticize these readings, but rather to point out that these are the tacts du jour for modern American Judaism. Spinoza, arguably, got kicked the fuck out for less. Read More »
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Electric Messiah

Band: High on Fire
Album: Electric Messiah
Best song: The title track totally rips.
Worst song:“Drowning Dog” isn’t great.

I broadly don’t believe in the idea of “cancelling” someone, but for the thought experiment that bad faith arguers believe it to be, I’ll bite and take another shot at explaining my own thinking when it comes to delineating art and artist. As in: When do I decide to stop consuming someone’s music/movies/etc. because of their politics. My own personal cancelling, I guess. Read More »
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Band: Ioanna Gika
Album: Thalassa
Best song: “Messenger” is one of my favorite songs of the last few years..
Worst song:The final three tracks kind of run together.

I don’t read much music criticism at all. I’ll read the odd Quietus feature or might hit a Pitchfork link if someone sends it to me. I read year-end lists every December and try to catch up, but I’m mostly disconnected from that part of the culture. This makes finding new music tougher than it used to be; I often just find out about bands through Two Minutes to Late Night guest spots or though opening bands. I mentioned this in the True Widow thing, as I saw them open up for Chelsea Wolfe.

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May Our Chambers Be Full

Band: Emma Ruth Rundle and Thou
Album: May Our Chambers Be Full
Best song: “The Valley” is one of the best songs in recent memory.
Worst song:”Monolith” is the only track without Rundle.

One of my worst impulses that I continuously follow – even though I know it’s bad – is to know as much information about a record that I can. I want to know about the people in the band, I want to know how the record came together and I even want to know the intention behind everything about the album. Read More »
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  • About Me

    I'm Ross Jordan Gianfortune. I am not a writer, but I sometimes write here about music and my life. I live in Washington, DC.

    I used to review each of Rolling Stone Magazine's top 500 albums of all time. Now I'm writing about albums I own.

    My work has appeared in The Washington Post, The Gazette, The Atlantic, Sno-Cone and a bunch of defunct zines.

    You can contact me at rjgianfortune at gmail dot com.

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