Kimber – Black Joe Lewis
Lindsay – Kurt Vile, Connan Mockasin
Dario – Uncle Acid & The Deadbeats, Kurt Vile
Paula – Connan Mockasin, Milo Greene
JUST ANNOUNCED PRE-ORDERS
Thom Yorke – Suspiria (pre-order)
THIS WEEK’S NEW RELEASES
The Bottle Rockets – Bit Logic CD/LP (Bloodshot)
Formed nearly 30 years ago, The Bottle Rockets helped forge a now popular subgenre-small-town, middle-class, Midwest American roots rock-part right-to-the-gut poetry, part rock ‘n’ roll, all truth. Bit Logic is a different sort of album for the St. Louis natives and shows them at their most self-aware, self-challenging, and socially alert. Recorded in St. Louis at Sawhorse Studios, engineered by Mario Viele and produced by longtime studio collaborator Eric “Roscoe” Ambel (The Del-Lords, Steve Earle), The Bottle Rockets’ 13th album has them looking at their unique stylistic blend through a different lens. While one of the group’s earmarks is constructing blue-collar anthems, Bit Logic has the quartet focusing outside themselves, at how change and adaptation affects the bigger picture.
Elvis Costello & The Imposters – Look Now CD/CD+CDEP/LP/LP+12” (Concord)
Recorded in Hollywood, New York City and Vancouver, British Columbia, Look Now is beautiful in its simplicity, reflective in its lyrical vision, surrounded by melodies and orchestrations that are nothing short of heavenly. It’s the first album Costello has made with The Imposters since the 2008 release of Momofuku and his first new album since the acclaimed 2013 Roots collaboration, Wise Up Ghost. Look Now is an outstanding 12-strong addition to his song catalogue. Most of the titles were written solely by Elvis Costello although, “Don’t Look Now” and “Photographs Can Lie” were co-written with Burt Bacharach, who makes a guest appearance, leading The Imposters from the piano for those two ballads. Lead track “Under Lime” is a spry, heavily textured pop rocker with Beatles-esque harmonies and horn arrangements, while “Unwanted Number” has a low-key, soul-inflected groove and female backing vocals. Costello initially wrote the latter song for the 1996 Allison Anders movie Grace Of My Heart but never committed it to record until now.
Dave Davies – Decade CD (Red River Entertainment)
Dave Davies is a musician who needs little introduction, as a founder member of legendary rock group The Kinks; his guitar sound, unique style and songwriting has shaped the landscape of rock and pop music across generations. Decade is a collection of unreleased songs he recorded from 1971-79. The collection can be considered to be a companion piece to 2011’s Hidden Treasures, which spotlighted songs he wrote in the ‘60s. Although his brother Ray wrote the majority of the Kinks material, Dave penned several great songs, such as “Death Of A Clown” from Something Else and the Arthur-era outtakes “Mindless Child Of Motherhood” and “This Man He Weeps Tonight”. As the press release notes, Dave’s songs “had no apparent place” in the concept albums Ray was creating, so these tracks remained “under beds, in attics, in storage” until they were discovered by Dave’s sons. Dave’s first true solo album, AFL1-3603, came out in 1980.
John Grant – Love Is Magic CD/2xLP+MP3 (Partisan)
“Each record I make is more of an amalgamation of who I truly am,” declares John Grant. “The more I do this, the more I trust in myself, and the further along I go.” Even when the Michigan-born musician released his debut solo album Queen Of Denmark in 2010, Grant laced sumptuous soft-rock ballads with an array of spacey, wistful synthesizer sounds, increasingly adding taut, fizzing sequencers, nu-synth-disco settings and icy soundscapes to the mix on 2012’s Pale Green Ghosts and 2015’s Grey Tickles, Black Pressure, the latter The Guardian described as, “variously agonizing, hilarious, uplifting and moving: another bravura display from a unique songwriting talent.” Now, with his fourth solo album, Love Is Magic, Grant has continued evolving, creating his most electronic record yet, in collaboration with Benge (Ben Edwards), solo artist, analogue synth expert/collector and a member of electronica trio Wrangler.
John Hiatt – The Eclipse Sessions CD/LP (New West)
Long celebrated as a skilled storyteller and keen observer of life’s twists and turns, Hiatt can get at the heart of a knotty emotion or a moment in time with just a sharp, incisive lyric or witty turn of phrase. The 11 tracks presented on The Eclipse Sessions, from the breezy opener “Cry To Me”, to the stark “Nothing In My Heart”, the lost-love lamentation “Aces Up Your Sleeve” to the rollicking “Poor Imitation Of God”, demonstrate that the singer-songwriter, now 66, is only getting better with age, his guitar playing more rugged and rootsy, his words wiser and more wry. There’s a grit to these songs – a craggy, perfectly-imperfect quality that colors every aspect of the performances, right down to Hiatt’s raw and expressive vocals.
Connan Mockasin – Jassbusters CD/LP (Mexican Summer)
Jassbusters is Connan Mockasin’s third album and first in five years. An unclassifiable, unconventional record that neither picks up from nor abandons the modes of 2013’s widely-embraced Caramel or its 2010 predecessor Forever Dolphin Love, Jassbusters foreshadows a five-part melodramic “absurdist” film titled Bostyn ‘n Dobsyn, created by Mockasin. Jassbusters soundtracks the unpredictable narrative of the film in eclectic, electric ways. Whether bending genres or collaborating with artists like James Blake, MGMT, and Charlotte Gainsbourg, Connan Mockasin has always maneuvered in mysterious ways. After touring with the likes of Radiohead and Neil & Liam Finn (Crowded House), the R&B surrealist continues assembling a cult around his theater, nay spectacle of life.
St. Vincent – MassEducation CD/LP (Loma Vista)
A stunning standalone work in its own right, MassEducation is in fact another dimension of St. Vincent’s universally acclaimed 2017 album Masseduction. Recorded live in the studio over two nights in August 2017 while at Electric Lady Studio mixing the original album, MassEducation lays bare the exquisite songcraft of its other half. Performed entirely by Annie Clark on vocals and Thomas Bartlett on piano, the new album renders songs like “Young Lover” and “Fear The Future” and their subjects in vivid, vulnerable new light. Clark describes the refashioned versions as “two dear friends playing songs together with the kind of secret understanding one can only get through endless nights in New York City.”
Yves Tumor – Safe In The Hands Of Love CD/2xLP+MP3 (Warp)
Yves Tumor presents his highly anticipated Warp Records debut Safe In The Hands Of Love. Ever the sonic chameleon, the album sees Yves peeking out of the shadows with strong vocals and amped up production, channeling energy into deeply psychedelic and emotional compositions that manage to balance rampant experimentation with an idiosyncratic pop sensibility. From noise and industrial denizens to adventurous beat heads and a much wider field of adventurous music lovers of all kinds, Yves maintains a curiously wide appeal here and offers up an amazing ride.
Uncle Acid & The Deadbeats – Wasteland CD/LP (Rise Above)
A disorientating journey through Kevin Starrs’ (aka Uncle Acid) wonkiest dreams, Wasteland glides majestically from punchy and direct psych-rock anthems like “I See Through You” and “Shockwave City” to the viscous ooze of the eight-minute “No Return” and the twinkly-eyed bad trip of the album’s mesmerizing title track. Yet more confirmation that Uncle Acid exist in their own musical universe, Wasteland is a powerful cautionary tale: one rooted in the alien landscapes of Starrs’ imagination, but with a very clear connection to the deranged chaos of today’s political world. As humanity cheerfully circles the plughole, dystopian visions and present-day horrors have become more-or-less interchangeable, making Wasteland’s ghoulish surrealism a lot more pertinent and disturbing in the process.
Colter Wall – Songs Of The Plains CD/LP (Young Mary’s Record Co.)
After two years of relentless touring, Colter Wall wanted to make an album about home. Drawing on the stories of Saskatchewan, Canada, the young songwriter’s corner of the world takes shape throughout his second full-length album, Songs Of The Plains. Produced by Dave Cobb in Nashville’s Studio A, the project combines striking original folk songs, well-chosen outside cuts, and a couple of traditional songs that reflect his roots growing up in the small city of Swift Current. Wall captures the spaciousness of the Canadian plains by relying on minimal production and his resonant baritone, which he’s strengthened into a mighty instrument in its own right. It’s a deep and knowing voice you wouldn’t expect of a man who’s not yet 24 years old. “I went into the studio and knew exactly the story I wanted to tell,” Colter says of Songs Of The Plains. “That made it easier on a sonic level and a musical level, to be able to tell Dave that it’s a record about my home. That changes it at the roots level because it’s like having a mission statement, saying, ‘All right, let’s make a Western album.’”
Sarah Borges And The Broken Singles – Love’s Middle Name CD/LP (Blue Corn Music)
Sarah Borges’s unbridled joy at making music two decades into a storied career comes through loud and clear in her latest long player, aptly titled Love’s Middle Name. Her third studio record with the Broken Singles, it’s a muscular 10-song cycle that pulses with gritty, unfettered emotion. On “House on a Hill”, Sarah pines for a blue-eyed ex and the home they once shared. But instead of being a maudlin affair, the album’s centerpiece track grabs you with raw vocals and a wring-out-your-heart chorus over a no-nonsense drumbeat and driving guitars.
David Bowie – Loving The Alien (1983-1988) 11xCD/15xLP (Rhino/Parlophone)
The fourth in a series of box sets spanning David Bowie’s career following Five Years (1969-1973), Who Can I Be Now? (1974-1976) and A New Career In A New Town (1977-1982). The set is named after the opening track from the Tonight album and includes newly remastered versions of Bowie’s most commercially successful period: Let’s Dance, Tonight, Never Let Me Down (original and a new 2018 production of the LP), Glass Spider (Live Montreal ’87), the previously unreleased Serious Moonlight live album, a collection of original remixes entitled Dance and the non-album/alternate version/B-sides and soundtrack music compilation Re:Call 4.
Edie Brickell & The New Bohemians – Rocket CD (Verve Forecast)
Thirty years ago, Edie Brickell and New Bohemians exploded out of Dallas and became an international sensation with their double-platinum debut album, Shooting Rubberbands At The Stars, featuring the Top Ten hit, “What I Am”. Now, the group returns with Rocket, their first new music in a dozen years. The band’s music contains elements of rock, folk, blues, and jazz.
The Dodos – Certainty Waves CD/LP (Polyvinyl)
Like the duo’s breakout sophomore album Visiter, Certainty Waves finds The Dodos embracing the unlimited possibilities of a time when there were no preconceptions of what the band should sound like. Questions like whether the group needed to incorporate more than just “acoustic guitar and drums,” and just what exactly the ratio should be of acoustic vs. electric guitar suddenly took a backseat to the realization that so much emphasis was mistakenly being put on form rather than spirit.
The Helio Sequence – Keep Your Eyes Ahead [Reissue/2018] CD/2xLP+MP3 (Sub Pop)
A full remaster of The Helio Sequence’s landmark 2008 album, plus a second album of demos, alternate versions, and outtakes from the same era. Magnet named Keep Your Eyes Ahead one of the “Top 25 Albums of 2008,” and raved it “is a shining example of how to go retro while still moving forward.” And Drowned in Sound, in its 8/10 review of the album, wrote, “And now, at last, the protracted silence is broken by the surging scream of Keep Your Eyes Ahead, an album that feels as vital as the first, gulping breath of the near drowned. What this record means to Summers and partner Benjamin Weikel is apparent in the intense force of feeling.”
Jaakko Eino Kalevi – Out Of Touch CD/LP (Weird World)
Ranging in style from the Gerry Rafferty swagger of “China Eddie” and Motown psych of “This World” to the Aegean dub of “Conceptual Mediterranean Part 1” and continental pop of “People in the Centre of the City,” each song on Out Of Touch is characterized by that familiar Jaakko warmth and melodic flair. It feels like a natural step forward for an artist whose all-round skills have led him down some intriguing paths. Notably, he played on David Byrne’s American Utopia album, and was invited to join the line-up of Crammed Discs’ cult Belgian new-wave band Aksak Maboul for a run of shows.
Kinski – Accustomed To Your Face CD/LP (Kill Rock Stars)
As they near their 20th year as a band, Kinski shows no signs of slowing down. Their new record, Accustomed To Your Face, sounds as free and daring as their early forays, but with the luster of confidence that comes with two decades of playing together. Reflecting a multi-faceted approach, in the tracks “Guest Girl Vocalist” and “There Goes Hot Stamper”, Kinski seems to have harnessed the power of early punk and wed it to their own tight and head-on approach to the genre. But then there is “Kinski 101”, a celebratory nod to their quintessential style of dynamically structured instrumental pieces. Weaving it all together is the band’s consistent command of their craft. The rhythm section is dialed in and the interplay between the guitars continues to be more than the sum of their parts.
Tom Morello – The Atlas Underground CD/LP+MP3/LP+CD (Mom + Pop)
On his latest album Morello blends Marshall stack riff-rock with the digital wizardry of EDM and hip-hop. Includes collaborations with Marcus Mumford, Portugal. The Man, the Wu-Tang Clan’s RZA and GZA, Vic Mensa, K.Flay, Big Boi, Gary Clark Jr., Pretty Lights, Killer Mike and Whethan, among others.
Kurt Vile – Bottle It In CD/2xLP+MP3 (Matador)
Travel can inspire in surprising ways: Kurt Vile discovered as much making his first record in three years, the eclectic and electrifying Bottle It In, which he recorded at various studios around the country over two very busy years, during sessions that usually punctuated the ends of long tours or family road trips. Every song, whether it’s a concise and catchy pop composition or a sprawling guitar epic, becomes a journey unto itself, taking unexpected detours, circuitous melodic avenues, or open-highway solos.
Young The Giant – Mirror Master CD (New Elektra)
Following 2016’s critically-acclaimed Home Of The Strange, Mirror Master promises to continue ascending into consciousness, though this time with a heavy focus on personal self-awareness.
William Basinski & Lawrence English – Selva Oscura LP+MP3 (Temporary Residence)
For over half a decade, William Basinski and Lawrence English have been in regular contact with one another. During that time their paths have crossed repeatedly in various cities; Zagreb, Los Angeles, Hobart and more, in a variety of situations. It was from these chance encounters – and the strange familiar of lives lived in transit – that their first collaboration, Selva Oscura, was seeded. Each of the extended pieces on this record maps an acoustic topography that draws on the concept of drifting into the strange familiar. The works each dwell in an ever shifting, yet fundamentally constant state of unfolding. As one sound fades away, another is revealed in its place, creating a sense of an eternal reveal. [Limited colored vinyl pressing also available.]
Blur – The Best Of [Reissue/2000] 2xLP (Parlophone)
Double-vinyl repress of the 2000 best-of album from the Britpop band.
John Carpenter – Halloween III: Season Of The Witch [Reissue/1982] LP (Death Waltz)
John Carpenter and Alan Howarth completely jettisoned their previous work and deliver nothing short of an electronic masterpiece for their score to Halloween III. The lead track “Chariots Of Pumpkins” is an epic 4/4 beat-driven synth-banger that has regularly been played by DJs over the last 10 years. The rest of the score features lush pads, Linn drums aplenty and veers from beautiful blissed-out ambient drones to sinister stinger-driven mood pieces. [Alan Howarth’s scores for Halloween 4: The Return Of Michael Myers and Halloween 5: The Revenge Of Michael Myers pressed on limited-edition colored vinyl are due October 19.]
The Fall – I Am Kurious Oranj [Reissue/1988] LP (Beggars Banquet)
Vinyl reissue of The Fall’s eleventh studio album. Released by Beggars Banquet 30 years ago, in 1988, it contains some of their most loved songs including “Cab It Up!”, “New Big Prinz” and “Jerusalem” which takes its lyrics from a poem by William Blake. The album was written as the soundtrack to an avant-garde ballet titled I Am Curious, Orange, produced by the experimental Michael Clark Company and performed in London with The Fall playing live. Limited colored vinyl pressing also available.
Jeff The Brotherhood – Magick Songs 2xLP (Dine Alone)
Recently released on CD – now available on vinyl. Magick Songs marks a departure from Jeff The Brotherhood’s previous sound. Elements of ‘80s Japanese experimental music meld with Indonesian Gamelan forms, clever improvisation and abundant hand percussion, and synthesizer. Later, it’s dreamy and ethereal, evoking psychedelic rock and ‘90s indie styles.
Black Joe Lewis & The Honeybears – The Difference Between Me & You LP (Black Joe Lewis)
Recently released on CD – now available on vinyl. Sonically inspired by the hill country blues of Junior Kimbrough, cowpunk style of The Gun Club, and the southern soul of Stax, The Difference Between Me & You charts new territory with a heavy stream of lyrical consciousness. Mining his first decade of experience on the road, the record is influenced by a deep repertoire of sounds: the heavy grooves of Albert King, punked-up blues of R.L. Burnside, the storytelling of Bobby “Blue” Bland, and the soulfully layered horns of the Stones, are all omnipresent throughout.
Milo Greene – Adult Contemporary LP (Nettwerk)
Recently released on CD – now available on vinyl. The genre of “adult contemporary” is characterized by its exceptional euphony. In skill, it effortlessly mingles sounds. In intent, it envelops itself in harmonies. In spirit, it has the beguiling ability to disarm listeners. That’s why L.A.’s Milo Greene, the always-evolving indie-pop band, chose the genre as its muse and namesake for their third album.
Laura Veirs – Year Of Meteors [Reissue/2005] LP+MP3 (Raven Marching Band)
Laura Veirs – Saltbreakers [Reissue/2007] LP+MP3 (Raven Marching Band)
Limited colored vinyl reissues now available. With organic imagery and a sense of open-eyed, open-hearted wonder, Laura Veirs’ songs seem to hover between the sea and the stars taking inspiration from each. On 2005’s Year Of Meteors, familiar surroundings come into sharper focus as the lyrical themes of the sky and outer space now seem mysterious, magical and new. Laura Veirs’ lyrical allusions to the natural world are disarmingly dreamlike yet scientifically precise. Using synergistic elements of contemporary folk, Americana, alternative rock and laptop style electronics, she creates an amalgam that remains her own. 2007’s Saltbreakers is by turns haunting, playful, tender, and fierce, embracing everything from machine-driven beats to angelic gospel choirs to fuzzed-out guitars.
NEXT WEEK’S NEW RELEASES
R.E.M. – Best Of BBC CD/LP
CLOUD NOTHINGS – Last Building Burning CD/LP
WILL OLDHAM – Songs Of Love + Horror CD/LP
JOHN CARPENTER – Halloween OST CD/LP
GRETA VAN FLEET – Anthem Of The Peaceful Army CD/LP
JASON ISBELL – Live From The Ryman CD/LP
MEWITHOUTYOU – Untitled Album CD/LP
MINUS THE BEAR – Fair Enough CD/LP
ELLE KING – Share The Spirit CD/LP
MORGAN SAINT – Alien CDEP
RICHARD ASHCROFT – Natural Rebel CD/LP
BELLS INTO MACHINES – Self-Titled CD/LP
BRONCHO – Bad Behavior LP
PETER BJORN + JOHN – Darker Days CD/LP
CAVE – Allways CD/LP
DEAD RIDER TRIO – Self-Titled CD/LP
PAPERCUTS – Parallel Universe Blues CD/LP
TIMMY’S ORGANISM – Survival Of The Fiendish CD/LP
DEM ATLAS – Bad Actress CD/LP
HOW TO DRESS WELL – Anteroom CD/LP
JR THOMAS + THE VOLCANOS – Rockstone CD/LP
ALKALINE TRIO – LP reissues
CRANBERRIES – Everybody Else Is Doing It So Why Can’t We CD/LP
FAD GADGET – Fireside Favourite LP
VARIOUS ARTISTS – Switched On Eugene CD/LP