Bleed Out is all pent-up energy and explosion, executed by a bunch of friends who were mainly happy to be in a room together making loud noises. In January 2021, just weeks after Darnielle had started writing, his bandmates Peter Hughes, Matt Douglas, and Jon Wurster joined him at a studio in the woods near his home in Chapel Hill. Everything was finished inside a week. Available on black and limited edition yellow vinyl.
RUSSIAN CIRCLES – Gnosis CD/LP (Sargent House)
Russian Circles latest album, Gnosis, eschews the varied terrain of their past work and bulldoze a path through the most tumultuous and harrowing territory of their sound. As was the case for so many artists in the age of COVID, the obstacles of geography and isolation forced Russian Circles to reevaluate their writing process. Rather than crafting songs out of fragmented ideas in the practice room, full songs were written and recorded independently before being shared with other members, so that their initial vision was retained. While these demos spanned the full breadth of the band’s varied styles, the more cinematic compositions were ultimately excised in favor of the physically cathartic pieces.
SILVERSUN PICKUPS – Physical Thrills CD/LP (New Machine Recordings)
Physical Thrills, Silversun Pickup’s’ sixth studio album and the follow-up to 2019’s Widow’s Weeds, is produced by Butch Vig (Nirvana, Garbage, Smashing Pumpkins, Green Day, Foo Fighters) and mixed by Billy Bush. Physical Thrills spans through an eclectic mix of distorted synths, pop-tinged danceable tunes, pared-down ballads, and a collection of “dream shanties” melodies that are all interconnected with each other into a cohesive body of work. Features “Scared Together” and “Alone on a Hill.”
HOT CHIP – Freakout/Release CD/LP (Domino)
The 8th studio album from Hot Chip, Freakout/Release is another dizzying high in a multi-decade career that’s seen Hot Chip continuing to innovate and develop a rich, resonant songcraft. And while they continue to operate at peak form, the album also feels like a new chapter for the group – a collection of flesh-and-blood songs that finds the band reaching into the darkness to emerge as a true creative unit, their gazes fixed positively on the future ahead.
TALL DWARFS – Unravelled: 1981-2002 2CD/4LP (Merge)
Unravelled: 1981-2002 shines a loving light on lo-fi pioneers Tall Dwarfs, the prized New Zealand duo of Chris Knox and Alec Bathgate. The collection, available as a 4-LP or 2-CD box set, compiles songs from Tall Dwarfs’ two decades of recordings. The vinyl edition includes a 20-page collector’s booklet of photos, comics, posters, and other ephemera.
BREATHLESS – See Those Colours Fly CD/LP (Tenor Vossa)
Dreamlike and Hallucinogenic, a hazy luminosity billows from every pore of Breathless’ forthcoming album See Those Colours Fly. The music of Dream-Pop Melancholics, Breathless has never been the sort to be hurried – after all, See Those Colours Fly, mixed by Kramer, is only their third new release this century. But while progress on the group’s eighth album was unavoidably delayed by a stroke of cruel misfortune – not to mention the realities of the global pandemic – the finished work is one of their finest, brimming with melody, transfigured by it’s long period of gestation and the changes fate imposed on their creative process. The songs of See Those Colours Fly possess a hallucinogenic and dreamlike quality – coloured by ineffable magic but always guided by hooks. The album is firmly in the grand tradition of Breathless music – epic, ethereal, otherworldly – but there’s an economy to these dulcet visions, their hunger for wide-open sounds tempered by a discipline, a commitment to the song. The result is perhaps the most perfectly distilled album of the group’s career.
THE ARMED – ULTRAPOP: Live at The Masonic LP (Sargent House)
The Armed are set to release ULTRAPOP: Live at the Masonic Temple, an incredible live soundtrack from the band’s narrative-driven concert film of the same name. The album and film were captured in the opulent chapels, imposing asylum rooms, full-size indoor handball courts, halls (and more) of the mysterious Masonic Temple of Detroit; a 550,000 square foot fortress in the heart of the city. ULTRAPOP: Live at the Masonic features breathtaking, hyperactive performances of tracks off The Armed’s break-out album ULTRAPOP, selections from their second LP, Only Love, the CYBERPUNK 2077 single “Night City Aliens” and culminates in the ultimate catharsis with the entire collective converging for the devastating closer ”On Jupiter.”
ONEIDA – Success CD/LP (Joyful Noise)
Experimental psych-punk institution Onedia returns with Success, the band’s most guitar-centric, rocking album in decades. Long straddling the gray area between the NYC punk/psych/rock community and the art/experimental world, the music of Oneida is celebrated for its mix of abstract, atmospheric sounds and pulsing, hammering anthems. Success finds the band getting to the core of what makes minimal rock music so good – songs pared back to beat and melody with a limited number of guitar chords. If a song or two gets ripped in half later by a corrosive guitar solo, well, what did you expect? This is Oneida.
THE A’S – Fruit CD/LP (Psychic Hotline)
Bonus, limited edition flexi free with purchase! Not to be confused with the late ’70s/early ’80s new wave band, The A’s is Amelia Meath (Sylvan Esso, Mountain Man) and Alexandra Sauser-Monnig (Daughter of Swords, Mountain Man). The duo’s debut album Fruit is wild, weird cosmic cowboy songs performed on hair, ice chunk, nylon shorts, gravel, guitar, and more.
On June 26 2012, DIIV released their seminal debut record, Oshin. The album received critical acclaim from Pitchfork granting it “Best New Music,” NME ranked it in the Top 10 among it’s “Albums of the Year,” and it positioned DIIV as a central influence on the sound and aesthetic of the 2010s Brooklyn indie music scene. To commemorate the 10th anniversary, this limited edition 2xLP combines the Oshin tracklist with the original Oshin demos recorded by Smith, and two live cuts recorded at storied Brooklyn DIY venue Shea Stadium – including the never before released “Yuk”. The expansive packaging includes a craft paper die-cut widespine housed in a clear printed PVC sleeve, vinyl pressed on blue marble (to commemorate the very first limited edition pressing of Oshin on Captured Tracks), a DIIV “Fuck The World” poster, and a retrospective booklet with archival photos, reflections from each bandmember, new writing from the original “Oshin” poet, Madeline Jones, and expanded liners by Shaad D’Souza.
DIIV – Sometime / Human / Geist 3×7” (Captured Tracks)
DIIV craft a sound that is at once familial and frost-bitten. Indebted to classic kraut, dreamy Creation records psychedelia, and the primitive-crunch of late- ‘80s Seattle, the band walk a divisive yet perfectly fused patch of classic-underground influence on their debut LP. Sometime / Human / Geist collects DIIV’s inaugural three 7″s, repressed for the first time since their original releases in 2011.
EARLY JAMES – Strange Time To Be Alive CD/LP (Easy Eye Sound)
Alabama’s native son, Early James, returns with his sophomore album, Strange Time To Be Alive. The lyrical wordsmith conjures the ghosts of great southern gothic writers from Eudora Welty to William Faulkner, while channeling the haunted spirits of Tom Waits and Townes Van Zandt. The album evokes a timeless amalgam of forsaken blues, wistful folk, and Tin Pan Alley crooning, anchored by the singer’s unmistakable voice that sways from gravel-filled shouts to pained, forlorn whispers. [A limited-edition brown color vinyl pressing is available.]
R.E.M. – Chronic Town [Reissue/1982] CDEP/12”/Cassette (A&M)
40th Anniversary Edition of the debut EP from R.E.M. featuring “Gardening At Night”, “Wolves, Lower”, and more. [A limited-edition picture disc vinyl pressing is available.]
MADONNA – Finally Enough Love – #1s Remixed CD/2xLP (Rhino)
Madonna made history once again when she topped the Dance Club Songs chart for the 50th time, making her the first and only recording artist to have 50 No. 1 hits on any single Billboard chart. To celebrate this historic milestone, Madonna curated two new collections: Finally Enough Love – 50 Number Ones, a new 50-track collection that includes her favorite remixes of those chart-topping dance hits that have filled clubs worldwide for four decades. The single CD and double-LP version, titled Finally Enough Love – #1s Remixed, is an abridged 16-track version.
CASS MCCOMBS – Heartmind CD (ANTI-)
On Heartmind, Cass McCombs enters the double-digit-album phase of his career, a quantitatively rarified place for any songwriter; rarer still, though, is the fact that he does not yet seem to have settled into a qualitative sound or pattern, of singing the same thought twice (or perhaps even once). Songs like “Karaoke” are a god-level burst of power-pop perfection, as fetching as anything Cass has ever cut. The springy staccato guitar, the vaporized electric keys, the melody seemingly born for singing or clapping or dancing along: Cass triangulates a perch of his very own out among The Go-Betweens, The dB’s, and The Cure, and vibrates there, a beacon. And then, of course, there is the song’s playful if painful lyrical conceit – the lover who is making all the sacred motions of commitment but whose feelings may be no more deep or real than someone simply reading the lyrics for “Vision Of Love” or “Stand By Your Man” from some crowded bar’s TV screen. [Vinyl edition due September 23.]
THE PYRAMIDS – AOMAWA: The 1970s Recordings 4LP (Strut)
Strut present the first box set release to bring together the 1970s recordings of The Pyramids, led by Idris Ackamoor. As students at Antioch College, Ohio, alto saxophonist Idris Ackamoor, flautist Margaux Simmons and bass player Kimathi Asante created three lasting monuments in sound – Lalibela, King of Kings, and Birth / Speed / Merging, a trio of albums produced without any label backing or distribution between 1972 and 1976. Their music is unique among the varied canon of avant-garde and experimental music of 1970s America: high intensity African-styled percussion topped with songs, chants, and horns, laced with African instruments and arranged into long, flowing suites that surge and roll.
LIGHTNING BOLT – Oblivion Hunter LP (Thrill Jockey)
Rainbow splatter reissue. Lightning Bolt redefines what it means to be DIY. An utterly singular band in every way, unbridled creativity and energy propel them well past most categorical boundaries, least of which is the boundary between band and audience. Theirs is an immersive experience – a sound so huge it can swallow us all.
ALICE COOPER – Killer [Reissue/1971] LP (Friday Music)
180gm audiophile vinyl pressing. 1971 was a banner year for rising superstar Alice Cooper and his band with their mega smash hit album Killer. As a fourth album in his long standing career with Warner Records, Killer was an amazing masterwork which many of his fans point to as one of their favorite Alice Cooper albums of choice.
BLONDIE – Live LP (Earmusic)
Limited white colored vinyl LP pressing. Blondie’s first concert in 17 years on February 10, 1999, at New York’s Town Hall, was brilliantly captured on the aptly named “Live”. The recording features the band’s founding members and includes remarkable classics such as ‘Atomic’, ‘The Tide Is High’, ‘One Way Or Another’, ‘Call Me’ and ‘Heart of Glass’, as well as songs from their successful comeback album “No Exit” with the worldwide hit single ‘Maria’. Live returns to vinyl in a magnificent Collector’s Edition. Fans can look forward to listening to Blondie on limited 180g White Vinyl in a beautiful 2LP Gatefold packaging, featuring original photographs from 1999.
DOPE LEMON – Hounds Tooth [Reissue/2017] 12” (BMG)
Translucent lime color vinyl pressing of the 2017 EP from Angus Stone’s (one half of sibling duo Angus & Julia Stone) psychedelic alt-pop project Dope Lemon. Hounds Tooth features the warm, reverb-laden cuts “Home Soon”, “Only Lovers Left Alive”, and “Where Do You Go”.
MORT GARSON – Mother Earth’s Plantasia [Reissue/1976] LP+MP3 (Sacred Bones)
Plants date back from the dawn of time, but apparently, they loved the Moog, never mind that the synthesizer had been on the market for just a few years. Most of all, the plants loved the ditties made by composer Mort Garson. Few characters in early electronic music can be both fearless pioneers and cheesy trend-chasers, but Garson embraced both extremes, and has been unheralded as a result. The cult classic that is Mother Earth’s Plantasia is now being repressed on a bunch of new plant inspired colors in celebration of Sacred Bones 15th year anniversary.
AMERICAN AQUARIUM – Chicamacomico LP
Recently released on CD – now available on vinyl, including an indie store exclusive clear w/ green & black color pressing. “Chicamacomico is a record about loss. Over a six-month span at the end of 2019/beginning of 2020, I lost my grandmother, my mother and watched as the world fell into a 2+ year pandemic that decimated businesses, relationships, and dreams. This is a record about dealing with those losses. My hope is these songs serve a salve for anyone else experiencing loss. A reminder that you are not the only one that lost a friend this year, or a parent, or a loved one. There’s a special kind of hope that comes from that realization. I am not alone. We enlisted Brad Cook (Bon Iver, Nathaniel Ratliffe, Waxahatchee) to produce the record and traveled to Sonic Ranch, a world-renowned recording complex tucked in the middle of a 1,700-acre pecan orchard, in the Texas border town of Tornillo. Over the course of ten days, we watched these songs go from simple folk ruminations into fully formed band arrangements.” – BJ Barham
SILVERSTEIN – Misery Made Me LP (UNFD)
Recently released on CD – now available on translucent orange and indie store exclusive translucent blue color pressing. Filled with moments of relentless energy throwing back to their punk and hardcore roots to visionary moments of modern heavy, Silverstein’s Misery Made Me fastens the group’s status as torchbearers of the scene on all fronts. It’s both intriguing and inspiring that a band – who could have merely rested on the impressive legacy they’ve already cemented – would continue to dig deep and find the inspiration to reach people in meaningful new ways. On Misery Made Me, Silverstein ultimately find themselves spring-boarding off the heights they’ve reached over the past handful of years.
DANZIG – 6:66: Satan’s Child LP (red/black splatter) (Cleopatra)
One of the most anticipated reissues of the year! The 1999 dark masterpiece from metal gods of the underworld, Danzig! This powerful album has some of Danzig’s heaviest and most profound songs including “Thirteen,” which was written for and recorded by Johnny Cash in 1994 and used as the opening song in the hit 2009 film The Hangover! Beautifully restored artwork from British comic book artist and longtime metal illustrator Simon Bisley! Limited edition RED & BLACK SPLATTER vinyl in a gatefold jacket with full color inner sleeve!
FELA RANSOME KUTI & THE AFRICA 70 – Roforofo Fight [Reissue/1972] LP (Knitting Factory)
Limited clear yellow vinyl pressing. Roforofo Fight is the fourth in the series of celebratory Fela 50th Anniversary reissues. Like Fela’s other early ‘70s releases he uses each side of his LPs to create a deep groove that pulls the listener in and follows with metaphoric lyrics that call out and critique the corrupt hangover of colonialism.
PANIC AT THE DISCO – Viva Las Vengeance CD/LP (Fueled By Ramen)
Panic! At The Disco’s seventh studio album, Viva Las Vengeance shows a change in process for frontman/songwriter Brendon Urie, having cut everything live to tape in Los Angeles alongside his production partners, Jake Sinclair, and Mike Viola. The cinematic musical journey is about the fine line between taking advantage of your youth, seizing the day, and burning out. The songs take an introspective look into his relationship with his decade plus career including growing up in Las Vegas, love, and fame. “Viva Las Vengeance is a look back at who I was 17 years ago and who I am now with the fondness I didn’t have before. I didn’t realize I was making an album and there was something about the tape machine that kept me honest,” shares Urie. [An indie store exclusive red color vinyl pressing is available.]
BOUNCING SOULS – The Bouncing Souls LP+MP3 (Epitaph)
Limited gold color vinyl pressing of the third full-length album by the punk band from New Brunswick, New Jersey. It contains such fan favorites as “East Side Mags”, “Kate Is Great” and “East Coast F*** You!”.
JONATHAN RICHMAN & MODERN LOVERS – Jonathan Richman & The Modern Lovers [Reissue/1976] CD/LP (Omnivore)
Jonathan Richman formed The Modern Lovers in 1970 in Boston with Jerry Harrison (Talking Heads), and Ernie Brooks and David Robinson (The Cars). The band recorded a series of demos, first with John Cale (The Velvet Underground) and later with producer Kim Fowley. Both sets of demos were eventually released, but not until the original group had disbanded. In 1975 Jonathan relocated to California and secured a recording deal with Beserkley Records. By 1976 he had pulled together a new version of The Modern Lovers. This group included the holdover David Robinson from the original band and added, Leroy Radcliffe and Greg ‘Curly’ Keranen (The Rubinoos). Co-Produced by Beserkley founder Matthew King Kauffman and Glen Kolotkin (Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin), the self-titled release delivered on Richman’s desire for more acoustic and harmony-based material with tracks like “New England” and “Here Come The Martian Martians”. [An indie store exclusive red color vinyl pressing is due September 16.]
PELICAN – Australasia [Reissue/2003] 2xLP+MP3 (Thrill Jockey)
Pelican’s debut album Australasia, originally released in late 2003 by Hydra Head Records, is a landmark record in the shifting tides of heavy music that took place at the turn of the millennium. 20 years since its release and with several sold-out represses, Australasia is a proven essential for any listener exploring the bounds of rock music. Now issued as a deluxe double-LP edition newly remastered for vinyl and complete with three never-before-released bonus songs, including a remix by James Plotkin and digital downloads of early Pelican live recordings. [An indie store exclusive translucent orange colorway is available.]
SPELLLING – The Turning Wheel LP+MP3 (Sacred Bones)
Pink color vinyl pressing. Red velvet curtains draw back to reveal a cosmic wheel of fortune, floating in the deep black, star studded theater of infinite space. A whirl of timbres, personalities, and stories. The Turning Wheel revolves around themes of human unity, the future, divine love and the enigmatic ups and downs of being a part of this carnival called Life. Venturing to push the boundaries of her primarily synth-based work, SPELLLING took on the ambitious task of orchestrating and self-producing an album that features an ensemble of 31 collaborating musicians. The Turning Wheel incorporates a vast range of rich acoustic sounds that cast SPELLLING’s work into vibrant new dimensions.
COMING NEXT WEEK!
LUPE FIASCO – Drill Music In Zion CD/LP
BLONDIE – Against The Odds: 1974-1982 3CD/4LP
JULIA JACKLIN – Pre-Pleasure CD/LP
THEE SACRED SOULS – Self Titled LP
MOBY – Play LP reissue
REGINA SPEKTOR – 11:11 LP reissue
CHRIS FORSYTH – Evolution Here We Come LP
DELICATE STEVE – After Hours LP
WILL HOGE – Wings On My Shoes CD
STEVE EARLE – Jerry Jeff CD/LP
VALERIE JUNE – Undercover CD/LP
MUSE – Will Of The People CD/LP
MARCUS KING – Young Blood CD/LP
CALVIN HARRIS – Funk Wav Bounces Vol 2 CD