Though they’ve never really dropped off the map completely, Jim Henson’s lovable Muppets seem to be enjoying something of a cultural resurgence lately. A lot of that probably has to do with the upcoming Jason Segel/Amy Adams film simply called The Muppets, as well as the fact that many people who enjoyed the characters as kids are now coming to the age where it’s acceptable, even desirable, to embrace their childhood loves again.

You can add The Green Album to the list of cultural artifacts presaging the return of these creatures to full-on popularity. The record’s aimed exactly at the people described above, who in the years between their childhood and now have cultivated “cool” tastes, of which the Muppets have become a part. One look at the pedigree of bands and artists contributing to this compilation can’t help but impress — Weezer, My Morning Jacket, Andrew Bird and the rest all stand in the upper echelons of their respective fields, and it’s rare that any kind of tribute album could cull such noteworthy acts together. Continue reading »

Last we heard from Matt Nathanson, he was covering the Mountain Goats. A good tune, but hardly a stretch for the Massachusetts songwriter. Taking on Prince’s “Little Red Corvette,” though, shows a much bigger leap…and delivers a much bigger payoff. Armed with only two acoustic guitars, he and bandmate Aaron Tap strum along for a delicate strip-down of the funk classic. Continue reading »

Massachusetts native Matt Nathanson is known for being, dare we say it, an Indie Rock Romeo. The man has a way of pulling at the heartstrings, from his 2009 hit “Come on Get Higher” to his new Daytrotter cover of California faves The Mountain Goats’ “Love Love Love.” Nathanson can seamlessly take the most insignificant glance that a woman gives him from across a room and craft an engaging and quite beautiful song about it. Continue reading »

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