Kimber – Sufjan Stevens
Lindsay – Mavis Staples
Dario – Townes Van Zandt
Dominic – Sufjan Stevens
THIS WEEK’S NEW RELEASES
Björk – Utopia CD/2xLP (One Little Indian/The Orchard)
Björk’s ninth studio effort, co-produced by Venezuelan DJ Arca, follows-up her 2015 breakup record Vulnicura and celebrates her reemergence on the other side of heartache. “The last album, we sort of call it ‘hell’ – it was like divorce. So we are doing paradise now. Utopia,” the enigmatic artist explains. “Vulnicura was about a very personal loss, and I think this new album is about a love that’s even greater. It’s about rediscovering love – but in a spiritual way…” Transcendent lead single “The Gate” serves as a fitting introduction to a record about Bjork’s romantic renaissance. The eye-catching cover art was designed by artist Jesse Kanda with creative direction from Björk and her longtime collaborator James Merry.
Clap Your Hands Say Yeah – Some Loud Thunder (10th Anniversary Edition) CD/LP (CYHSY/The Orchard)
“Some Loud Thunder was an album written mostly as a reaction to the not unwelcome but still uncomfortable great interest in the band’s first album, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah. Depending on who you asked, in 2007 the band was known alternatively as the real thing or a flash in the pan, a band who presented a new paradigm for independent music or whose model was based on sheer luck, a band simply enjoying the process of creation or a (relatively) new band struggling to maintain some sort of illusory artistic foothold. The general desire to discover the secret behind the project (and the irritation that it caused me in interviews, reviews, etc.) was, to a large degree, what drove the creation of the album, Some Loud Thunder. I think that this album, from the abrasive first track (which was not as much of a f**k you as some think but rather that it simply worked) to the final disintegrating ‘give up, give up, give up, give up, give up’ in the song, ‘Five Easy Pieces,’ documents a band that was comfortable taking big chances, somewhat aware of the consequences of taking chances (in an industry that often seems allergic to veering off the beaten path) but ignoring them all the same.” – Alec Ounsworth
Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – Who Built The Moon? CD/LP+MP3 (Sour Mash/Caroline)
Who Built The Moon? is the brand new studio album from Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds. Made in collaboration with producer David Holmes between London and Belfast, it follows the previous two UK number one albums Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds (2011) and Chasing Yesterday (2015). “People are going to be surprised. I think people love Noel and they’re desperate for him to make a really big, bold, up-tempo beast of a record – a lot of Noel’s music is quite mid-tempo,” Holmes explains. “This one is fun.” Widely believed to be Gallagher’s most experimental and adventurous work to date, the album sees him relying much less on the electric guitar than ever before – as well as adopting instrumentals, ambient electronica and ‘obscure samples’. The 11-track LP features guests like the Jam’s Paul Weller (organ on “Holy Mountain”) and the Smiths’ Johnny Marr (guitar and harmonica on “If Love Is The Law”). [CD is available in Regular and Deluxe editions. Deluxe adds a bonus track.]
Prayers – Baptism Of Thieves CD (The End)
With gritty lyrics exposing the harsh realities of gang and street life coupled with love and loss over throbbing beats and swirling synthesizers, electronic duo Prayers bring an authentic urban feel to goth music, a mix of ge3937nres that crosses cultural and societal boundaries and breaks stereotypes. Prayers creates a modern dystopian landscape based in both brutal reality and transcendental occultism. Featuring Leafar Seyer on vocals and synth and Dave Parley on beats and synth, Prayers straddles interlocking worlds. Fierce yet mystic, brutal yet beautiful, Prayers is the sound of the Southland, a stirring of the winds of changes that begin on the West Coast and moves across the globe. Combining street reality, traditional magic, and gothic dance beats, Prayers crashes through barriers to shift consciousness. [Vinyl edition due January 19.]
Lars Frederiksen and The Bastards – Lars Frederiksen & The Bastards [Reissue/2001] LP+MP3 (Pirates Press)
Lars Frederiksen and The Bastards – Viking [Reissue/2004] LP+MP3 (Pirates Press)
Lars Frederiksen and The Bastards – Live And Loud LP+MP3 (Pirates Press)
Vinyl reissues of the Rancid side-projects only two albums plus a newly unearthed live album recorded in 2001.
Ed Sheeran – You Need Me [Reissue/2009] 12” (Atlantic)
Ed Sheeran – No. 5 Collaborations Project [Reissue/2010] 12” (Atlantic)
Ed Sheeran – Live At Bedford [Reissue/2010] 12” (Atlantic)
Ed Sheeran – Loose Change [Reissue/2010] 12” (Atlantic)
Ed Sheeran – Songs I Wrote With Amy [Reissue/2010] 12” (Atlantic)
Vinyl reissues of five EPs from the British singer-songwriter.
Sufjan Stevens – Carrie & Lowell Live LP (Asthmatic Kitty)
Limited edition transparent blue colored vinyl pressing of Stevens’ November 9, 2015 performance at North Charleston Performing Arts Center in South Carolina.
Throbbing Gristle – 20 Jazz Funk Greats [Reissue/1979] LP (Mute)
Throbbing Gristle – The Taste Of TG: A Beginner’s Guide To the Music Of Throbbing Gristle [Reissue/2004] 2xLP (Mute)
Released on CD last week – now available on colored vinyl. Remastered reissues of the second and third albums by the English industrial music pioneers along with their 2004 compilation (which is available on vinyl for the first time).
Townes Van Zandt – Rear View Mirror 2xLP (Fat Possum)
This intimate collection of Townes Van Zandt live recordings from 1993 has been pressed on vinyl for the first time. Limited edition pink colored copies also available.
Wu-Tang Clan – Wu-Tang: The Saga Continues 2xLP (E1)
Recently released on CD – now available on vinyl. RZA shepherded members of the Wu-Tang Clan for a new LP that was “crafted by” his beat-making associate DJ Mathematics.
Dude York – Halftime For The Holidays CD (Hardly Art)
Seven new holiday-themed originals and two classic covers (Randy Bachman’s “Takin’ Care Of Christmas” and “Silent Night”). Self-consciously goofy, but refreshing in its willingness to tackle the misery and joy of the season in equal parts.
NEXT WEEK’S NEW RELEASES