Careful what you wish for: Music

Ever since Rolling Stone shed its cool and became the official spokesmagazine for Britney and all things tagged for mass consumption, there's been a big old void in the music world. Hip-hop/R&B mags such as Vibe and The Source cover the bling-bling but give little print to the more progressive side of the genres. And Spin has its tongue so deep into its cheek, it looks like a tumor.

So where's a hip kid like you to go for news and reviews of cutting-edge music? Well, Recess is an excellent start, but how much can you really trust a bunch of Dukies?

Enter CMJ New Music Monthly. It's been around for over 10 years, but somehow CMJ has managed to stay true to its college roots, churning out just-below-the-radar articles on everything from hip-hop to alt-country. And every month you get a free compilation CD featuring a few artists from each month's issue. There's definitely something shady going on with the artist selection process (i.e. shit-fests like Bad Ronald occasionally make it on there), but on the whole it's a great way to sample newly-dropped obscurities and find out what you dig. A year's subscription is only $29.95--a great gift for the wannabe music snob in all of us.


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