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Spencer and the School Spirit Mafia

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The digital delight of Space versus Speed

Since 2000, we've had the Popsicko, Rocktopus, As Fast As (three albums), Spencer and the School Spirit Mafia, and now Space versus Speed. All with Spencer Albee as principal songwriter and frontman. Seven full-length records.
Out of this world
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  January 28, 2011

Singer/songwriter Graeme Kennedy is back in town

... and he’s got ambitious plans for his McKeenstreet Music.
Sibilance
By PORTLAND PHOENIX MUSIC STAFF  |  March 12, 2010
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Hot, hot heat

Is New Year's back? It seemed to have been taken away from us, by a general and hard-to-pin-down sentiment that it ought to be some kind of family holiday. Fuck that.
New Year's Eve is just a warm-up
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  January 01, 2010

Local luminaries’ picks

I asked a bunch of people who really dig local music to help me make sure I wasn’t leaving any songs out when I was developing my list of the best 10 songs of the 2000s, but then I quickly realized that “best” is about as subjective as things come when y
A sample of other best songs of the 2000s
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  December 25, 2009
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Short-form Portland

I can hear the snarky comments already: "What?!? Rustic Overtones put out an album this year and Pfeifle hasn't fallen all over himself naming it #1? The sky is green!" But this isn't 1999. It's 2009. And it isn't all that strange for a phenomenal albu
The 10 best LPs and EPs of 2009
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  December 18, 2009

Machigonne Festival wrap-up

The MACHIGONNE FESTIVAL was a major success, despite the best efforts of Hurricane Danny.
Sibilance
By PORTLAND PHOENIX MUSIC STAFF  |  September 04, 2009


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What of the Beatles?

Spouting off during downtime in an interview with jazz drummer/composer Steve Grover, I once put forward my ill-researched idea that the third song is almost universally the best song on a great album.
Jazz, pop, and circumstance
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  September 04, 2009
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Second summer

Summer's over, the kids are getting back to school and I'm loath to turn the seasonal page. The music's been terrific. New discs by Spencer and the School Spirit Mafia, Grand Hotel, dilly dilly, Samuel James, and Gypsy Tailwind have highlighted the dep
Catching up with discs missed
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  August 28, 2009
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So good

One way to experiment with songwriting is to throw convention out the window, eschew verses and choruses, try to be completely unique. Sometimes the idea appears that if a song sounds like anything that came before it, well, that's points deducted like
Spencer Albee's got Spirit. How 'bout you?
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  July 31, 2009

Spencer and the School Spirit Mafia carnival at the Asylum


Reviewed over on page 18, Spencer and the School Spirit Mafia cap off a few weeks of album-release festivities with a full-on carnival at the...
By webteam  |  July 29, 2009

Portland Music News: June 19, 2009

Yeah, this makes us feel a little old: The June 27 show at the Port City Music Hall will be a 20th anniversary show for TWISTED ROOTS . SUN GODS IN EXILE (fresh off a release show for their debut album) and SIDECAR RADIO open, and there's word that
Sibilance
By PORTLAND PHOENIX MUSIC STAFF  |  June 19, 2009


What are the odds?

Ten years! When we organized our first Best Music Poll, way back in the day, we could only hope that it would one day wind up the institution it is today, with the annual Portland Music Awards ceremony drawing the best collection of musical talent Main
Best bets for this year's Best Music Poll
By SAM PFEIFLE  |  May 29, 2009