kimber – mercury program
lindsay – marissa nadler
dario – marissa nadler, mutual benefit
jeff – mrs magician
THIS WEEK’S NEW RELEASES
Adult Jazz – Earrings Off! CD/LP (Tri Angle)
“The Leeds-based band Adult Jazz released one of 2014’s most surprising records, an ear-candy mix of warped sounds, disjointed melodies and fractured beats. Now the group is back with an equally captivating follow-up and a new track, ‘Earrings Off!’ The song and album are both largely about gender identity, a theme the group also explored on its 2014 record, Gist Is.” — NPR
Terry Allen – Juarez [Reissue/1975] CD/LP+MP3 (Paradise Of Bachelors)
Legendary Texan artist Terry Allen occupies a unique position straddling the frontiers of country music and visual art; he has worked with everyone from Guy Clark to David Byrne to Lucinda Williams, and his artwork resides in museums worldwide. Widely celebrated as a masterpiece — arguably one of the greatest concept albums of all time — his spare, haunting 1975 debut LP Juarez is a violent, fractured tale of the chthonic American Southwest and borderlands.
Angry Angles – Angry Angles CD/LP+MP3 (Goner)
This 17-song collection comprises the complete studio recordings (including five unreleased tracks) of the Jay “Reatard” Lindsey and Alix Brown project that came together shortly after the mid- ‘05 demise of the former’s long-running primary endeavor, The Lost Sounds. The sheer immensity of Lindsey’s musical discography relative to Reatard’s death in January of 2010 at the age of 29 is an undeniably impressive attribute of his legacy. But unlike other artists with massively prolific output, his militantly self-imposed standard of quality control assured this project was not simply a prolonged demo or practice session for what came next-his landmark solo debut Blood Visions. [Vinyl version includes a download of the album plus a board recording of a full set of the band in its prime at Gonerfest 3 (September, 2006).]
Richard Ashcroft – These People CD/LP (Harvest)
“Richard Ashcroft’s brilliant new album These People, a slice of classic Verve songcraft with modernist electronic touches, was pieced together in his home basement studio in bursts over the past six years, in between ‘being a dad and living a standard-ish kind of life with dogs and school runs.’ Having discarded the distraction of his mobile phone, he tinkered at length with ‘new old keyboards,’ learning new crafts and trying reinvent the looping melodicism of Urban Hymns. ‘With all the studios closing down, record sales hit massively, the whole industry changing, I had to re-evaluate how I could still create these super records,’ he explains. “So [album track] ‘Out Of My Body’ is in the mould of ‘A Song For The Lovers’, ‘Bittersweet Symphony’, going right back. It’s a proper old-school record made with modern technology and old stuff to create something you’ve never heard before.’” – NME
David Bowie – ChangesOneBowie [Reissue/1976] CD/LP (Parlophone)
May 20, 2016 is 40 years to the day that David Bowie’s first ever best-of compilation, including songs from 1969 to 1976, was released. Remastered on CD with 180gm vinyl pressing also available.
Braids – Companion CDEP/12” (Arbutus)
The four songs included on Companion were written while the Canadian band was working on debut album, Deep In The Iris. They told The FADER that the tracks were recorded in the months following that album’s release. “Braids are so damn good because Raphaelle Standell-Preston writes lyrics that mine personal insecurities and then together, as a band, they manage to fuse all that pain into criminally catchy hooks.” — Stereogum
Debo Band – Ere Gobez CD/2xLP (FPE)
Debo Band raises the roof on the Ethiopian musical past, picking up where the political upheaval of the ‘70s/’80s quenched the energy of one of East Africa’s most prolific, vibrant scenes. Ere Gobez is the follow up to their debut on Sub Pop, and the large ensemble, known for its fun, danceable dives into Ethiopia’s rich musical worlds with riotous energy and sinuous swing.”
Brett Dennen – Por Favor CD (New Elektra)
“On Brett Dennen’s sixth album, Por Favor, the California-based songwriter says he explores a ‘raw vulnerability.’ A relationship he was in had become rocky. His parents sold his childhood home. And changes in his professional life made for an uneasy state. ‘I wasn’t feeling good about myself or life,’ he says. ‘I was feeling kinda sad.’ It was fertile ground for writing, though. Dennen says ‘What’s The Secret?’ — the lead track on Por Favor — sets the tone for the album perfectly. It’s an upbeat number that fuses his folky style of the past with calypso sounds. Lyrically, though, it touches on what he’s been going through in the last year. ‘It’s a song about asking for help,’ he says. Dennen recorded the album in Nashville at Dave Cobb’s (Chris Stapleton, Jason Isbell) home studio in roughly two weeks last year, with a bulk of the sessions taking just five days. Dennen used analog equipment this time — a first for him — to get a more soulful, vintage sound.” – Wall Street Journal Arts
Bob Dylan – Fallen Angels CD/LP+MP3 (Columbia)
Fallen Angels is the 37th studio album from Bob Dylan, and as with last year’s Shadows In The Night, features his take on classic tunes from The Great American Songbook.“OnFallen Angels, Dylan sings as though he’s deep within a reverie — seized by the memory of some ‘pug-nosed dream’ from 30 years ago, unable to fully bring himself into the present. He evokes heartbreak, or recollections of heartbreak, with a convincingly unsteady tremble. He sings lighter love songs with a vaudevillian’s panache. And even when he’s rendering something that requires a more philosophical tone, like ‘Young At Heart,’ he invests the lines with some personal meaning, some trace awareness of his own fragile state. In this way, he’s turned advanced age, with its endless backward glances, into an advantage: These are old songs sung by an old guy who is fully owning the oldness, the melancholy, the spontaneous outbreaks of gushy sentimentality” – NPR.
Tim Heidecker – In Glendale CD (Jagjaguwar)
For the last decade, Tim Heidecker (along with his comedy partner Eric Wareheim) has proven to be one of the cult-comedy greats with his Adult Swim series Tim & Eric’s Awesome Show, Great Job! and Tim & Eric’s Bedtime Stories. In Glendale is his first earnest collection of songwriting under his full name, and shows Heidecker shifting deftly from the mundane to the idiosyncratic; from the sentimental to the caustic; from the earnest to the humorous. His knack for crafting catchy tunes amid curious subject matter pops up in spades.
Misha – We All Become CD/LP (Tomlab)
Misha is multi-instrumentalist/writer/
producer John Chao (lap steel, violin, guitar, accordion, others) with a small set of friends (Ronit Granot, Amy Vachal.) All We Will Become is Misha’s second album, and is is a pop album about love in its incarnations, from start to end — of rapturously falling head over heels, of togetherness, of loss and grief, and bittersweet beauty that comes after.
Mountains And Rainbows – Particles CD/2xLP+MP3 (Castleface)
Last summer, John Dwyer came back from a Thee Oh Sees tour talking about a fantastic band he’d played with in Detroit called Mountains And Rainbows. What followed him home was a double-LP of shopworn weirdness and a delightfully loose attitude that must have something to do with the ecstasy of a Midwestern summer.
Mrs. Magician – Bermuda CD/LP+MP3 (Swami)
A concise collection of punk songs inspired by the big sounds of classic ’60s pop and rock ‘n’ roll and ’70s/’80s power pop.
Mutual Benefit – Skip A Sinking Stone CD/LP (Mom + Pop)
Mutual Benefit is essentially one man – American multi-instrumentalist Jordan Lee – who lives a peripatetic existence drifting between different US cities, recording with chosen co-musicians as he travels. Currently based in New York, Lee’s second collection as Mutual Benefit had its genesis while he toured [debut album] Love’s Crushing Diamond, as a successful artist with money coming in for the first time. After the low key opening of ‘Madrugada,’ two ambient, wordless minutes of gently fluttering strings, acoustic guitar and wind chimes, Lee soon hits peak form on the superb title track. Beginning with a whispered eulogy: ‘You are the first thing I see/When I open my eyes and wake from a dream,’ the song then shifts gear effortlessly into the kind of lilting, piano-led groove that characterized much of Love’s Crushing Diamond before building to a series of shimmering, euphoric crescendos rich in emotional intensity. Elsewhere, ‘Slow March’ is a hypnotic blend of deft finger picked guitar and Indian-influenced textures, while ‘Many Returns’ starts with a stately, haunting organ and then glides serenely towards a graceful, arcing chorus. Both of these tracks showcase Lee’s unfailing ability to deploy musicians sparingly yet effectively to supplement the simplicity of his song writing, subtly adding extra layers to the sound without ever saturating the inherently fragile structures. [Limited color vinyl pressing also available.]
Marissa Nadler – Strangers CD/LP (Sacred Bones)
For more than 12 years, Marissa Nadler has perfected her own take on the exquisitely sculpted gothic American song form. On her seventh full-length, Strangers, she has shed any self-imposed restrictions her earlier albums adhered to, stepped through a looking glass, and created a truly monumental work. Once again partnered with July producer Randall Dunn (Sunn O))), Earth, Black Mountain) Nadler has created a new album equal in sonic quality to the apocalyptic lyrical tone that covers its 44 minutes. In places her voice and guitar play off subsonic synths, while elsewhere, as in “Katie I Know,” a pulsing drumbeat launches the song off into an intense, confrontational place. “Janie In Love” is another full-band highlight, marrying the album’s most allegorically primal lyrics to the melodic hooks that makes Nadler one of the best songwriters working today. [Limited color vinyl pressing including slipmat also available.]
Pantha Du Prince – The Triad CD/2xLP (Rough Trade)
The German techno auteur releases his first proper studio album since his 2010’s Black Noise, and 2013’s collaboration with The Bell Laboratory, Elements Of Light. On the new album’s conceptual framework Hendrik Weber says, “Black Noise was very much about me being alone in a small room in Berlin and composing. The Triad opens the structure to more human ways of interacting, not digitized ways of interacting. It’s not about Facebook; it’s about meeting up and jamming. I wanted to cut through the digital dust that surrounds us.”
Ry X – Dawn CD/LP (Loma Vista)
Debut album from release from Australian singer/songwriter Ry Cuming aka Ry X (of The Acid and Howling). “Both ‘Only’ and ‘Deliverance’ showcase Ry’s boundless ability to create thought-provoking atmospheric music, engulfed with distinctively ethereal yet powerful vocal lines. ‘Only’ is filled with soft guitars and drifting vocals that harbor intense emotion, while ‘Deliverance’ starts with a bare piano melody and grows into something completely different.” – KCRW
The So So Glos – Kamikaze CD/LP (Votiv)
“The So So Glos are scenester fixtures, but with their fifth studio album, Kamikaze, they’re getting better and better at what they do, making a strong case for their hookiest and most varied work yet. While it has the sweaty garage rock true to the sort of Brooklyn D.I.Y. venues the So Sos helped found like Market Hotel and Shea on, it also includes a good deal of the tightest songwriting the band has shown.” – Billboard
Tiger Army – V CD (Rise)
Twenty years into their punk-and-rockabilly-merging career, Cali crew Tiger Army release their fifth full-length. [Vinyl version due July 1.]
Various Artists – Day Of The Dead 5xCD (4AD)
This 59-track, six-hour long Grateful Dead tribute album was created and curated by brothers Aaron and Bryce Dessner of The National, and features over 60 artists from varied musical backgrounds. All profits will help fight for AIDS/HIV and related health issues around the world through the Red Hot Organization. Some of the big names included here: Jim James, The War On Drugs, The National, Kurt Vile, Mumford & Sons, Wilco with Bob Weir, The Tallest Man On Earth, Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy, The Walkmen, The Flaming Lips, and so many more.
John Zorn – Mockingbird CD (Tzadik)
Featuring the magical sonorities of Bill Frisell’s guitar in a heavenly tapestry of harp and vibraphone, the Gnostic Trio is one of the most sublime ensembles in Zorn’s ever-expanding universe. Their sixth CD presents gorgeous and intimate chamber music touching upon themes of innocence, adventure, childhood and longing that unfold like an exotic flower. Inspired by the charming character Scout from the American classic To Kill A Mockingbird and tempered by a folk-like simplicity, Zorn and company spins an hypnotic web of melodic beauty to soothe the restless spirit.
The Cure – Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me [Reissue/1987] 2xLP (Elektra)
HQ-180 gm black vinyl reissue of The Cure’s five-star 1987 album.
Grimes/d’Eon– Darkbloom [Reissue/2011] 12” (Arbutus/Hippos In Tanks)
Harnessing the dark energy of her sophomore album Halfaxa with the shimmering dream pop of Geidi Primes, Grimes’ side represents a synthesis of these two sonic personalities. Displaying a level of clarity and craftsmanship heretofore unseen in her releases, Boucher presents a stunning new collection of ethereal dreamscapes that expand her creative palette without compromising the spectral presence she is known for.
The Jesus And Mary Chain – Honey’s Dead [Reissue/1992] LP (Plain)
Gold vinyl reissue of the fourth studio album by The Jesus And Mary Chain. The title refers to one of the band’s early hits, “Just Like Honey,” and the complete departure from their earlier musical style. Honey’s Dead was recorded and mixed in the band’s London studio with famed engineers Alan Moulder and Flood.
The Mercury Program – New Myths LP (Lovitt)
As per Mercury Program’s previous releases, the music on New Myths is lush and consonant – a combination of nuanced rhythms, minimalist riffs, and hazy atmospheres. Melodies are gracefully swapped and shuffled between guitar, vibraphone, and Rhodes piano. The music is serene and often hypnotic.
Phish – Hoist [Reissue/1994] 2xLP+MP3 (Jemp)
For those of you that missed out on the red color vinyl edition (RSD 2016) of Phish’s 1994 album Hoist, now is your chance to snatch up a (still-limited) HQ-180gm black vinyl copy.
Tycho – Awake Remixes LP+MP3 (Ghostly International)
Tycho’s 2014 album receives the remix treatment by Com Truise, Christopher Willits, Dusty Brown, Nitemoves, Beacon, RJD2, Bibio, Baio, and Few Nolder.
We Were Promised Jetpacks – These Four Walls [Reissue/2009] LP (FatCat)
Grey splattered color vinyl reissue of WWPJ debut album. The band’s youthful energy (their average age at the time was 21) explodes thunderously as colossal choruses fall unfailingly into place on These Four Walls. Every space is filled, tension bristling achingly in frontman Adam Thompson’s vocal delivery as the rest of the band crashes around him with a perfect balance of force and harmony.
NEXT WEEK’S NEW RELEASES
CATFISH AND THE BOTTLEMEN – Rides CD/LP
THRICE – It Still Moves CD/LP
TRAVIS – Everything At Once CD/Deluxe CD/LP
BAND OF SKULLS – By Default CD/LP
EARTHLESS/HARSH TOKE – Acid Crusher/Mount Swan CD/LP
HOLY FUCK – Congrats CD
KRISTIN KONTROL (Dum Dum Girls) – X-Communicate CD
MARK KOZELEK – Sings Favorites CD
BETH ORTON – Kidsticks CD/LP
FLUME – Skin CD/LP
GOLD PANDA – Good Luck and Do Your Best CD
50 Ft Wave – Bath White CD/LP
QUASI – LP reissues
SONNY AND THE SUNSETS – Moods Baby Moods CD/LP
KENDRICK LAMAR – Untitled Unmastered LP
MILES DAVIS + ROBERT GLASPER – Everything’s Beautiful LP
FUJIYA + MIYAGI – EP1 12″
GOAT – I Sing In Silence 7″
SUMMER CANNIBALS – Full Of It CD/LP/CASS