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Alfred Soto

Alfred Soto

Alfred Soto is a visiting professor in the Department of Communication at Florida International University. His work has appeared in Billboard, SPIN, Pitchfork, The Village Voice, MTV, The Miami Herald, among other publications. He is an associate editor of The Singles Jukebox and was features editor of Stylus Magazine. He lives in Miami.

41 articles

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List of articles in the library by artist

Courtney Barnett: Tell Me How You Really Feel

Review by Alfred Soto, Spin, 14 June 2018

TO BE COURTNEY BARNETT and learn that Liz Phair released the Girly-Sound to Guyville set is like being Bryan Ferry and opening your door to ...

The Breeders: All Nerve

Review by Alfred Soto, Spin, 20 March 2018

FEW WORDS DESCRIBE Kim Deal's songwriting and delivery of emotion better than "terse." In the Pixies and a series of Breeders albums she presented herself ...

Lindsey Buckingham: Under the Skin

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 11 October 2006

THE WORLD IS A SADDER PLACE without another 'Holiday Road'. Despite a Top Ten hit in 1981 (the ethereal 'Trouble') and 30 years of renown ...

Rosanne Cash: Seven-Year Ache, King's Record Shop, Interiors

Retrospective by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 10 February 2006

IT'S TEMPTING TO BELIEVE that in a better world, Rosanne Cash would inspire as much love and reverence as her father Johnny, but since no ...

Chic: What Is Chic in 2018? It's About Time Gives an Unsatisfactory Answer

Review by Alfred Soto, Spin, 4 October 2018

WEALTHY AND COOL ENOUGH to maintain a reputation on the sweet fragrance of thirty years' worth of fumes, Nile Rodgers nevertheless wanted a new Chic ...

Ciara: Beauty Marks

Review by Alfred Soto, Spin, 15 May 2019

A DUBYA-ERA STAR whose pop distillations of crunk failed to win her label's confidence at the turn of the decade, Ciara Princess Harris has spent the time since ...

Brandy Clark: Big Day in a Small Town

Review by Alfred Soto, Spin, 6 June 2016

A WRITER SINGING HER OWN SONGS isn't necessarily a singer. Brandy Clark made this point clear on 2013's 12 Stories; the title's J.D. Salinger allusion ...

Electric Six: I Shall Exterminate Everything Around Me That Restricts Me from Being the Master

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 8 October 2007

ELECTRIC SIX HAS A LEAD SINGER who sounds like Dr. Frank N. Furter playing Bryan Ferry on KISS' Dynasty. Seriously, Dick Valentine would perform 'I ...

Eurythmics: The Ultimate Collection

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 17 November 2005

THE PREFIX "PSEUDO" DESCRIBED EURYTHMICS so well that it became safe for other bands to use it 10 years after Bowie first made it respectable. ...

Donald Fagen: Morph the Cat

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 31 March 2006

AT THE END OF 1980'S GAUCHO you'll find Steely Dan's best song — the slow fade of Johnny, the protagonist of 'Third World Man'. The ...

Bryan Ferry: On Second Thought: Bryan Ferry's Mamouna

Retrospective by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 12 April 2005

For better or worse, we here at Stylus, in all of our autocratic consumer-crit greed, are slaves to timeliness. A record over six months old ...

Robert Forster and Grant McLennan: Intermission

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 26 June 2007

FOR ALL THE PROSE designed to render the Go-Betweens as immortals, it's refreshing that their actual records refute this notion so forcefully. Crass and inexplicable ...

Gang of Four: Entertainment!

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 31 May 2005

A COMMAND OF MARXIAN DIALECTICS is an impressive talent when writing a term paper, but it means shit in a club. That's what Gang of ...

The Go-Betweens: Liberty Belle & the Diamond Express, Tallulah, 16 Lovers Lane

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 15 November 2004

ROBERT FORSTER and Grant McLennan are my kind of guys. Thoughtful, wary, bemused, these are men who have known love and lost it, kept their ...

The Go-Betweens: Oceans Apart

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 12 May 2005

THERE'S NOTHING FOOLISH about the Go-Betweens' remarkable consistency, but their arrangements sure could use some hobgoblins. That's the impression I got from listening to their ...

GoGoGo Airheart: Rats! Sing! Sing!

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 10 November 2005

IMAGINE ALEX CHILTON LEADING LEE "SCRATCH" PERRY through the paces, and you get an inkling of what Mike Vermillion tries to evoke on 'Dub II'. ...

Interpol: Our Love to Admire

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 10 July 2007

INTERPOL ARE TOO EASILY MADE the butt of a joke, but so what? Jokes require no explanation. Since 2002's Turn On The Bright Lights they've ...

The Killers: Sam's Town

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 3 October 2006

MORE THAN A FEW CRITICS have knocked The Killers for recording a soupy version of Bruce Springsteen's 'Born to Run', but they haven't suggested which ...

The Killers: Wonderful Wonderful

Review by Alfred Soto, Spin, 2 October 2017

AT LAST I KNOW: George Herbert is Brandon Flowers' Rosetta Stone. Writing from the point of view of an object of sacramental importance or as ...

Jon Langford: All The Fame of Lofty Deeds

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 9 August 2004

FOR A BLOKE WHOSE SONGS ADDUCE Walter Benjamin and Emily Dickinson, Mekons frontman Jon Langford's taste for lowbrow Americana goes a long way towards explaining ...

Annie Lennox: Songs of Mass Destruction

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 4 October 2007

FEW THOUGHTS ARE LESS WORTH CONTEMPLATING than Annie Lennox as a woman with feelings and such. As the singer for Eurythmics — still the most ...

The Libertines: Anthems for Doomed Youth

Review by Alfred Soto, Spin, 15 September 2015

NOW THAT CARL BARÂT AND PETE DOHERTY have proven they are capable of collaborating again, they can go away and write a better album than ...

The Libertines: The Libertines

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 7 September 2004

CARL BARAT AND PETE DOHERTY COULD BE LOVERS; hell, I wish they were. On the cover of their eponymous second album, the singer/guitarists lean breathtakingly ...

Maroon 5: It Won't Be Soon Before Long

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 31 May 2007

CADDISHNESS IS ONE of the few character flaws that the pop and indie universes afford the proper respect. For a while in the '90s it ...

Paul McCartney: Memory Almost Full

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 8 June 2007

SINCE I'VE DUTIFULLY AVOIDED the half dozen studio albums released since he scored his last Top 40 hit in 1989, I'm in no position to ...

The Mekons: Natural

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 7 August 2007

DESPAIR IS THE MEKONS' MUSE. When a band devotes most of its career to cataloguing economic privation and apocalyptic visions, it risks cynicism and indifference. ...

Ashley Monroe: The Blade

Review by Alfred Soto, Spin, 20 July 2015

THE SINGER AND WRITER of the most exquisite sighs in modern country, Ashley Monroe doesn't come off as a mope. Her high, fluting voice projects ...

Ne-Yo: Because of You

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 9 May 2007

NE-YO'S A TRADITIONALIST, alright: like many of his R&B forebears, he has proven incapable of recording an album's worth of material. There's no noticeable advance ...

Angel Olsen: Burn Your Fire for No Witness

Review by Alfred Soto, Spin, 21 February 2014

ANGEL OLSEN buries a thesis statement at the end of her third album, Burn Your Fire for No Witness. On 'Window', over a barely audible ...

Pet Shop Boys: Fundamental

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 28 July 2006

PREPARE FOR ROCK & ROLL HALL OF FAME interment when critics praise your latest release as Your Best Album Since. When you've recorded a benchmark, ...

Liz Phair: Somebody's Miracle

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, October 2005

I LOVED LIZ PHAIR'S 2003 EPONYMOUS ALBUM. Sure, the vocals were ProTooled within an inch of their lives, the guitars too emphatic, the attempt at ...

Prince: Planet Earth

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 23 July 2007

EVER THE SHAPE-SHIFTER, Prince Rogers Nelson makes his most outrageous move yet. Lots of fans grumble about the lengths to which the artist formerly known ...

Ride: Weather Diaries

Review by Alfred Soto, Spin, 15 June 2017

RIDE'S DISAPPOINTING COMEBACK album lacks the things that made them great. ...

Amy Rigby: Little Fugitive

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 30 September 2005

A FORTYSOMETHING whose nerve endings still respond to the impulses of women half her age is a force to be reckoned with. ...

Scritti Politti: White Bread, Black Beer

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 24 July 2006

AUDIENCES IGNORE THE TRAVAILS of an aesthete who digs Gaultier pants and Immanuel Kant. Critics are more stupid. But when the aesthete hires producer Arif ...

Talking Heads: The Name of This Band is Talking Heads

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 27 August 2004

THE NAME OF ITS LEADER is David Byrne. Until 1987, when U2 and R.E.M.'s declamatory arena moves flexed the populist muscle Byrne could never manage, ...

Tune-Yards: I Can Feel You Creep into My Private Life

Review by Alfred Soto, Spin, 25 January 2018

MERRILL GARBUS COULD SING in Esperanto through sixteen vocal filters and it still wouldn't stop listeners from parsing her lyrics. Nonetheless, with her Tune-Yards project, ...

Lucinda Williams: West

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 21 February 2007

I DIRECT ANY YOUNG WOMAN looking for a role model to Lucinda Williams's eponymous 1988 breakthrough. Williams was like Chrissie Hynde's younger sister, not privy ...

Stevie Wonder: A Time To Love

Review by Alfred Soto, Stylus, 4 November 2005

LIKE BRYAN FERRY, Stevie Wonder has been worshipping at the altar of love for so long that he's forgotten that Eros likes his faithful to ...

Dwight Yoakam: Second Hand Heart

Review by Alfred Soto, Spin, 13 April 2015

ARTISTS DEPENDENT ON TRADITION as muse and subject gamble on fate. Eventually the marketplace will deal — so they think. Well, Dwight Yoakam has won ...

Yo La Tengo: There's a Riot Going On

Review by Alfred Soto, Spin, 20 March 2018

THE MOST VULGAR THING about Yo La Tengo's latest is its nod to Sly and the Family Stone's 1971 landmark: on the Hoboken trio's fifteenth ...

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