A Selection of Musicians Who Reliably Defy Expectations

Music lovers, rejoice — the new Liars album is out! If you’ve missed our earlier raves about it, suffice it to say that WIXIW (it’s pronounced “wish you,” incidentally) is one of the best things we’ve heard all year, and we’re very, very excited about it. It’s also the latest creative left turn for a band whose history has been full of them — if Liars’ career has been characterized by anything, it’s unpredictability. This is, of course, one of the reason we like them so much — bands whose sound varies radically from record to record are few and far between, but there are some great such groups operating today. Here’s a selection of our favorites.


It’s easy to forget that Liars didn’t seem that interesting when they emerged as part of the nascent Lower East Side scene of the early 2000s — their debut album They Threw Us All in a Trench and Stuck a Monument on Top was certainly good, but if anything, it was the fact that Angus Andrew was dating Karen O that put Liars on many people’s radar. Since then, however, they’ve outstripped their contemporaries further with every album, each of which has been radically different from its predecessor.