Kimber – Tracey Thorn, Buffalo Tom
Lindsay – Dick Stusso, The Breeders
Dario – Suuns
Paula – Lucy Dacus
THIS WEEK’S NEW RELEASES
Andrew W.K. – You’re Not Alone CD (Red Music)
To party is to exist. And to exist is to party. On You’re Not Alone, Andrew W.K.’s first album of new rock songs in nearly twelve years, the party is reborn as he delivers a set of high octane, full throttle rock ‘n’ roll powered by buoyant, infectious, and triumphant melodies. [Vinyl edition due March 23.]
The Breeders – All Nerve CD/LP (4AD)
The Breeders’ first record in a decade features the classic line-up of Kim and Kelley Deal, Josephine Wiggs and Jim Macpherson – the configuration behind their smash 1993 album Last Splash. Includes the infectious lead single “Wait in the Car.”
Buffalo Tom – Quiet And Peace CD (Scrawny/Schoolkids)
Having first made their mark with a raw, raucous approach that put the band at the forefront of the ’90s alt-rock explosion, Buffalo Tom has consistently revealed new layers of musical and emotional depth, as manifested in the bittersweet ballads, soul-searching songcraft and rousing rock tunes that make up new album Quiet And Peace.
Camp Cope – How To Socialise & Make Friends CD/LP (Run For Cover)
Camp Cope’s new album How To Socialise & Make Friends follows-up their 2016 self-titled debut and kicks off with the instantly remarkable bass line of “The Opener,” an explosive diatribe against the sexist double standards of the music industry at large. What follows the lead single are a collection of songs that anchor on the cycles of life, loss and growth through resilience and those moments of finding and being yourself. Throughout the album’s nine songs it becomes clear that if their debut was the flame, this is Camp Cope rising from the ashes, stronger and more focused than ever. For fans of Modern Baseball, Hop Along, Tigers Jaw and Waxahatchee. [Limited colored vinyl pressing also available.]
Lucy Dacus – Historian CD/LP+MP3 (Matador)
This remarkably assured 10-track statement of intent finds Lucy Dacus unafraid to take on the big questions – the life-or-death reckonings, and the ones that just feel that way. It’s a record full of bracing realizations, tearful declarations and moments of hard-won peace, expressed in lyrics that feel destined for countless yearbook quotes and first tattoos. An outward flowering of dynamic, living, breathing rock and roll.
Felt – Crumbling The Antiseptic Beauty [Reissue/1982] CD+7”/LP (Cherry Red)
Felt – The Strange Idols Pattern And Other Short Stories [Reissue/1984] CD+7”/LP (Cherry Red)
Felt – The Slendour Of Fear [Reissue/1984] CD+7”/LP (Cherry Red)
Felt – Ignite The Seven Cannons And Set Sail For The Sun [Reissue/1985] CD+7”/LP (Cherry Red)
Felt – The Seventeenth Century (Let the Snakes Crinkle Their Heads to Death) [Reissue/1986] CD+7”/LP (Cherry Red)
Limited edition CD+7” box set and single-disc vinyl LP remastered reissues now available. The box sets include the original album on CD in a special gatefold sleeve, a long deleted 7″ vinyl single pertaining to the relevant year of release, reproduced gig flyers, a double-sided wall poster, and four button lapel badges.
The Fleshtones – Budget Buster: Just The Hits! CD (Yep Roc)
Released last November on limited edition colored vinyl – now available on CD. A compilation of some of The Fleshtones’ finest singles and rarities over the last 10 years, many of which are out-of-print and difficult to find (plus two unreleased tracks).
Hibou – Something Familiar CD/LP+MP3 (Barsuk)
Something Familiar addresses Hibou’s (Peter Michel) ongoing battle with anxiety and depersonalization, the latter a disorder distinguished by feeling disengaged from the mind and body, as if someone is an outsider looking in at their own self. As a result, Something Familiar has a decidedly darker tone. Although the core elements of Hibou remain intact reverb-soaked guitars, plush keyboards, and Michel’s dreamy croon the record exudes melancholy.
Ilsa – Corpse Fortress CD/LP (Relapse)
Horror-obsessed, underground cult ILSA weave together tales of depravity and devil worship on their Relapse debut. Nine tracks forged in filth with dense layers of emotionally draining sludge, murky, primordial doom and feedback-laden, crusty death metal.
Iron Reagan/Gatecreeper –Gatecreeper/Iron Reagan [Split] CD (Relapse)
East Coast crossover titans Iron Reagan and rising Sonoran death metallers Gatecreeper unite for a split recording of cranium crushing proportions. Across eight new tracks (five from Iron Reagan and three from Gatecreeper) of auditory and lyrical venom, both bands showcase why they’re two of the most talked about groups in extreme metal today.
Lucius – Nudes CD/LP+MP3 (Mom + Pop)
This 10-song acoustic album is a collection of reimagined fan favorites including “Until We Get There” and “Tempest”, as well as several new songs and covers, all recorded at the famed Electric Lady Studios. The album features guests Nels Cline (Wilco) and Roger Waters, and includes covers of songs originally recorded by Gerry Rafferty and Tame Impala.
The Men – Drift CD/LP (Sacred Bones)
Drift is the seventh full-length by New York City rock polymaths The Men. The album’s 9 songs veer in a number of directions, but almost none of them feature a prominent electric guitar as the band brought synths, strings, sax, steel, harmonica, and tape loops into the mix. [Limited colored vinyl pressing also available.]
Moaning – Moaning CD/LP+MP3 (Sub Pop)
Moaning is a band defined by its duality. The abrasive post-punk trio comprised of L.A. DIY veterans, Sean Solomon, Pascal Stevenson, and Andrew MacKelvie, began nearly a decade after the three started playing music together. Their impassioned debut album comes born out of the member’s experiences with love and distress, creating a sound uniquely dark and sincere. Although the band is just breaking out of their infancy, Moaning’s sleek and cavernous tone emphasizes the turmoil of the era they were born into. One where the endless possibility for art and creation is met with the fear and doubt of an uncertain future. As a whole, Moaning drifts from sentimental to catastrophic, hiding meek and introspective lyrics within powerful droning dance songs, giving sonic nods to some of the band’s musical heroes like, New Order, Broadcast, and Slowdive. The band’s youthful attitude is met with the weight of topics like loss, routine, and mental health, reflecting the anxiety towards the status quo that much of their generation faces today.
Moby – Everything Was Beautiful And Nothing Hurt CD/2xLP (Mute)
Moby’s new album is a glowing tapestry exploring spirituality, individuality and the brokenness of humanity and finds the veteran electronica artist returning to his orchestral, soul, trip-hop and gospel roots. The title Everything Was Beautiful And Nothing Hurt is a reference to Billy Pilgrim’s epitaph in Kurt Vonnegut’s 1969 novel Slaughterhouse-Five. Featuring L.A.-based soulstress Raquel Rodriguez, the album’s first single “Like A Motherless Child” is a re-work of the well-known spiritual with origins in the slavery of the American South.
Mt. Joy – Mt. Joy CD/LP (Dualtone Music Group)
Steeped in folk-rock tradition and powered by the intuitive creative connection between Matt Quinn (vocals, guitar) and Sam Cooper (guitar), the songs on Mt. Joy’s eponymous debut depict the former wrestling with his own conscience, where the mundane and the fantastic collide as he processes tragedy, society, and love.
Pet Shop Boys – Actually: Further Listening 1987-1988 2xCD (Rhino/Parlophone)
Pet Shop Boys – Introspective: Further Listening 1988-1989 2xCD (Rhino/Parlophone)
Pet Shop Boys – Please: Further Listening 1988-1989 2xCD (Rhino/Parlophone)
Digitally remastered and expanded two CD editions. Each includes a bonus CD containing additional tracks including B-sides, edits, demos and more. [Stand-alone vinyl reissues of Actually, Introspective, and Please also available.]
Ed Schrader’s Music Beat – Riddles CD/LP+MP3 (Carpark)
On Riddles, Ed Schrader’s Music Beat (Ed Schrader & Devlin Rice) begins their new life. In search of a fresh direction, the group invited their close friend, electronic-pop maestro Dan Deacon, to expand their sound and experiment with them as the album’s producer, arranger, and co-writer. Working steadily in Dan’s studio for two years in total collaboration, the three evolving musicians pushed through an intense period of personal tumult and found purpose in the sounds they were committing to record. The result: a polished and passionate masterpiece of nuanced alt-rock. From driving opening track “Dunce” and the soaring single “Riddles” to the disarmingly gorgeous closer “Culebra,” the Music Beat unapologetically channel a personal pantheon of pop and rock Gods while growing into the band – and people – they’d previously kept caged inside.
Soccer Mommy – Clean CD/LP (Fat Possum)
Sophie Allison aka Soccer Mommy’s debut Clean is an emotional album, heavy on themes of growth, isolation, and change, but balanced by a lightness of touch, and with hooks to spare. “Still Clean” is a stunner of an opening track, with the signature warmth of Allison’s voice coupled with one of her best refrains. Her growth as a lyricist is most evident on “Cool,” a sharply observed character study describing an aloof stoner girl, so cool and untouchable, and the agony she inflicts on her boyfriend. “Flaw” is the comedown from a song like “Cool.” A melancholy ode to lovesick self-loathing that finds ecstasy in sadness. “Scorpio Rising” crystallizes these themes of identity, jealousy, and the desire to be someone else. Clean – the cohesive record Allison dreamt of making – is a true step forward, a strong and mature album from an artist just coming into her power.
Dick Stusso – In Heaven CD/LP (Hardly Art)
With his sophomore LP In Heaven, Dick Stusso’s numbered human days are on his mind. Without stumbling into pomposity, Dick has taken back the wheel on his life and is doing a bit of hotdogging. The album sounds so assured, you’d never guess the whole endeavor was almost completely down the tubes. “I was about 75% done with the album and then my apartment got burgled,” Stusso explains. “They took it all.” Having laid it almost exclusively to tape, there weren’t even files to pull from. But what seemed like another sour turn for Dick ended up being a little lemon zest in his G&T. He ended up teaming with psych visionary producer Greg Ashley in a defunct old church, making for a leap in fidelity on In Heaven. The new peacock strut to Dick’s vague longing and malaise suits his countrified T. Rex sound quite well. Exhibit A: album standout “Modern Music” is a sort of State of the Union and State of the Soul all set over a warm, gauzy glam bass line. Employing deft songcraft, which includes a wide open ambient midsection to really get you thinking about The Void, Dick manages to take down both capitalism and the bullshit conditions of human mortality without sounding all that put out by either.
Superorganism – Superorganism CD/LP+MP3 (Domino)
Superorganism is a sprawling, multi-limbed collection of international musicians and pop culture junkies. They number eight in total – recruited from London, Japan, Australia and New Zealand – seven of whom now live together in a house/DIY studio/band HQ in East London. Self-produced, written and recorded, their spectacularly confident debut record beams with a sense of wonky fun, a kaleidoscopic riot of sound and visuals. Influenced by the world-building depth of artists like Devo, Beck and The Avalanches, Superorganism soundtracks the band’s rapid trajectory from shared house side project to global audiovisual powerhouse and features previous singles “Something For Your M.I.N.D.” and “It’s All Good / Nobody Cares” as well as their brand new single “Everybody Wants To Be Famous.”
Suuns – Felt CD/LP (Secretly Canadian)
“As alluded to by its title and neon-warm album art, Suuns’ Felt is gonna make you feel things. You’re gonna learn something about your body listening to cuts like on DJ Shadow-leaning, head-bobber “Look No Further” or “Make It Real,” which could be a radio signal of a lost Silver Apples cut – that is, before it becomes a doomsday siren breakup song. These four gentlemen could be making beats for 21 Savage or Migos. But for now, lucky for you, they’re ruthlessly set on being one of the planet’s finest, bravest bands.”
Tracey Thorn – Record CD/LP+MP3 (Merge)
As ever, the personal has often been political in Tracey Thorn’s work. Across four decades, her songs and writing have offered up a clear-eyed woman’s view of the immediate world around her, from the acerbic teen love songs of her first early ‘80s band Marine Girls through sixteen years as one-half of articulate duo Everything But The Girl, to her recent acclaimed memoirs and journalism. On her new solo album, Record, the synth-driven tracks arrive and leave with a punchy sub-three-minute directness. f the album is in part about freedom and disenthrallment, “Queen” is the opening broadside, all personal fire and desire. “Air,” featuring backing vocals and synths from Shura, addresses identity and gender stereotypes, while “Smoke” looks at Tracey’s fear that her love of London and its freedoms are being eroded. “Guitar” is a celebration of that instrument as a tool of a teenage girl’s liberation. Ewan Pearson peppers them all with fizzing analogue synths and smart mirror-ball beats. For all its no-fuss pop brevity, the album revolves around “Sister,” a dubby nine-minute Compass Point-style disco jam featuring an all-female crew as Tracey is backed by Warpaint’s rhythm section and joined by Corinne Bailey Rae on glorious backing vocals. [Limited red colored vinyl pressing also available.]
Titus Andronicus – A Productive Cough CD/LP+MP3 (Merge)
In a move that may infuriate the black-denim-and-PBR set, A Productive Cough finds Titus Andronicus setting aside the leadfooted punk anthems of yesteryear in favor of a subtler, more spacious approach that pushes Stickles’ soul-baring songwriting to the fore, creating a conversational intimacy between artist and audience with which previous Titus Andronicus efforts had only flirted. This new restraint sacrifices none of the band’s singular intensity, from the merciless lyrical onslaught of “Number One (In New York)” to the blistering guitar solos which accompany the swaggering horseplay of rock band workouts “Real Talk” and “Home Alone” to the disarmingly passionate commuter hymn “Mass Transit Madness (Goin’ Loco’).” Even the surprisingly groovy “Above the Bodega (Local Business)” hides, beneath its loose and spontaneous facade of zesty brass and propulsive congas, a pained admission of secret shame, despairing the challenge of keeping the dark side concealed before the ever-judgmental eye of the big city.
Turbonegro – Rocknroll Machine CD/LP/Cassette (Burger)
It’s been over six years now since the word got out that the titans from Oslo, Norway were re-resurrected for a second time since their grimy beginnings back in 1989. Of Turbonegro’s ninth album, Rocknroll Machine, vocalist Tony Sylvester had this to say: “We’ve spent the past years honing our skills. The music we are releasing now is more distilled, more refined, more pointed, more powerful; we traveled to the future and this is what we heard on the radio!”
Barrence Whitfield & The Savages – Soul Flowers Of Titan CD/LP+MP3 (Bloodshot)
Titan is the largest moon orbiting Saturn, a planet which astrologically symbolizes pain, struggle and hard knocks on the human path to wholeness, and liberation among many other things. It is a forbidding, poisonous place with mountains, rivers and oceans of methane and ammonia, cloaked in a dense shroud of gases. The kinds of flowers that would grow there would be the hardy beasts that survived to make this strange bouquet. Soul Flowers Of Titan is a collection of songs representing cosmology, struggles and influences. People shooting guns, separating, coming home (someday), in love, running around, leaving this earth, going crazy, drinking coffee, and thinking about Sun Ra. It’s a wild, electric phantasmagoria of blues, rock, garage, and soul; it blasts off into diverse orbits only to come back together into a singular Savage cosmology.
Jonathan Wilson – Rare Birds CD/2xLP (Bella Union)
Jonathan Wilson describes Rare Birds as a “maximalist,” high-density album more influenced by ‘80s British production than anything to do with Southern California in 1970s. It’s a dynamic new approach for Wilson that calls to mind one of Peter Gabriel’s early solo albums or even mid-period Kate Bush. “This album is a hell of a lot more Trevor Horn than anything, you know, Laurel Canyon-related,” he notes. Of Rare Birds as a whole, Wilson adds, “I want my music to hit people like an emotional tidal wave. With my songwriting it’s never about a clever couplet or smug turn of phrase, it’s about the intensity, the impact. Besides, we’re all fishing downstream from Townes Van Zandt anyway, so the only thing left to do is go BIG.” The set features backing vocals from Lana Del Rey, Father John Misty, fellow Roger Waters backing band member Lucius, and Brian Eno collaborator Laraaji.
INXS – Kick [Reissue/1987] 2xLP (Atlantic)
Vinyl reissue of INXS’s sixth studio album, Kick, remastered and cut at half speed over two LPs which play at 45rpm.
Pet Shop Boys – Please [Reissue/1986] 2xLP (Rhino/Parlophone)
Pet Shop Boys – Actually [Reissue/1987] 2xLP (Rhino/Parlophone)
Pet Shop Boys – Introspective [Reissue/1988] 2xLP (Rhino/Parlophone)
Remastered vinyl reissues of the Pet Shop Boys’ first three albums.
Ryuichi Sakamoto – async remodels LP (Milan)
Recently released on CD – now available on vinyl. A dozen remixes of async tracks by a who’s-who of experimental giants – everyone from late Icelandic composer Jóhann Jóhannsson (Arrival, Sicario) to Oneohtrix Point Never (composer of Good Times) to Arca (producer of Bjork’s numerous releases) and Andy Stott – have gotten their hands dirty remixing Sakamoto’s work. Even reworks by the Canadian synthpop duo Electric Youth and Austin-based synthwave legends S U R V I V E are included.
NEXT WEEK’S NEW RELEASES