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JAWs 2022: Best debut Hello and welcome to the first instalment of this year’s maybe-annual JAWs! Here are your questions: Who Are You? I am johnnyoftheWell! How Are You? I am well. I am in a cafe procrastinating an essay deadline and stressing about my laptop battery, which is not long for this world. How […]

It’s with great sorrow that we announce the passing of Brandon Scott (aka TheSpirit), a longstanding member of the Sputnik community who lost his battle with addiction. Brandon was a member of Sputnik for over thirteen years, over which time he wrote frequently as a site Contributor and made an indelible mark on the site […]

As part of a new tradition, Sputnik will be putting together seasonal playlists to celebrate some of our favorite holidays/times of year. The first installment in this series is for the spookiest/eeriest tunes of 2022, just in time for Halloween! It’s a pretty eclectic mix, featuring everything from hip-hop to doom metal, so hopefully there’ll […]

On Thursday 8/11/22, the day after my mom’s 63rd birthday (and 11 days before my 27th (and 9 days before my sister’s 31st)), I flew from JFK to Seattle, arriving at about 8 p.m., to attend a three-day music festival called Day In Day Out. My brother lives in Seattle as a PhD student at […]

Revisit other SputStaff Top 10 Lists | Kanye West | My Chemical Romance | The National | Say Anything |  Taylor Swift | Thrice | Foreword: Greetings, and welcome back to Sputnik’s semi-famous “SputStaff Top 10” series, in which – and get this – our site’s staff members pick their favorite 10 somethings! In this […]

Sputnik Roundtable #1: Music Assessment All discussion prompts submitted by the user nightbringer. So far this year, we have implemented a handful of new, different ideas of our website’s staff blog — while some have predictably flamed out, others have endured and seem primed for a bright future. About four months ago, I surveyed our collective […]

Metallica: Back to the Front Metallica Store Written By: Matt Taylor Foreword by James Hetfield – Afterword by Ray Burton Released: August 16, 2016 276 pages Publisher: Insight Editions       Metallica’s tell-all about the Master Of Puppets album and subsequent tour is presented with the same meticulous attention to detail and professionalism as every other […]

Shoegaze is a big genre and this is a big fucking post. Cut out 10-15 minutes for yourself, and away we go… Intro I feel that practically everyone listens to shoegaze in some form or another, but what landmarks or band-families this entails varies surprisingly wildly depending on who you ask. Shoegaze is old and […]

There are few albums in recent memory that have been quite so divisive as Donda. Kanye West’s long-teased 10th LP has gone through many iterations and titles, and finally dropped yesterday as a 27-track, almost 2 hour behemoth. Length alone should never be a detractor to one’s critical reception of art – but in this […]

One of my favorite album restructurings has to be the one I did years ago for Viva La Vida and Prospekt’s March, which I’m going to re-publish as part of this new series I’m doing.  The LP (VLV) and the bonus follow-up collection (PM) are each superb in their own right, but in blending the […]

Call it a wildly unnecessary hobby, but one thing I’ve always enjoyed about music is re-ordering album tracklists. I do it with albums I enjoy just as much as albums I dislike, always in an attempt to arrange the music even better somehow. I find I get the most out of it on albums that […]

Overwhelmed by all the stuff on your news feed about Taylor Swift? Does the task of listening to 32 tracks (49 counting the Long Pond Sessions, 51 counting the yet-to-be released Evermore bonus tracks) appear daunting? Well, there’s no longer any need to fear ostracizing from your social circles due to a humiliating lack of […]

Do you ever listen to music and feel like it was made for you, when it clearly wasn’t? Sometimes even when you know an artist absolutely has not had the same experiences, something about their music feels personalized, as if they were watching your life and wrote it with you in mind. I can’t speak […]

One of my favorite phenomena in music is when a band renowned for pristine, flawless production has lesser-known/stripped-down roots. It’s actually a very common occurrence, as typically bands enrich their sound over time when better resources/more expensive equipment becomes available. Nevertheless, I felt that it would make for an interesting set of case studies, observing […]

An interesting thing happened to my perception of music over time. If you were to go back to my heyday on this website – let’s say 2010-2012 just for argument’s sake – everything changed my life. That heartfelt guitar solo. The lyric about overcoming depression. The slow burner that paralleled my own rage boiling beneath […]

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