Staff Picks
Lindsay – Wye Oak
Caleb – Sam Prekop and John McEntire, and Ryuichi Sakamoto
Dario – Wye Oak, and Sam Prekop and John McEntire
Zach – Eiafuawn and M. Ward
Kimber – Sam Prekop and John McEntire

SWANSThe Beggar CD/LP (Young God)
The Beggar was written and produced by Michael Gira and features contributions from recent and former Swans, members of Angels of Light, as well as Guest Swan Ben Frost. “After numerous pandemic-induced cancellations of tours for the previous Swans album leaving meaning, and an apparent bottomless pit of waiting, waiting, waiting, and the strange disorientation that came with this sudden but interminable forced isolation I decided it was time to write songs for a new Swans album and forget about everything else. They came relatively easily, always informed by the suspicion that these could be my last. When I finally was able to travel, songs in hand, to Berlin to work with my friends recording this record, the feeling was akin to the moment in The Wizard of Oz when the film changes from Black and White to Color. Now I’m feeling quite optimistic. I hope you enjoy the album.” – Michael Gira

ALBERT HAMMOND JR Melodies On Hiatus CD/LP (Red Bull Records)
Albert Hammond Jr, co-founder and lead guitarist of the Strokes, is back with another new solo album, Melodies on Hiatus, the follow-up to 2018’s Francis Trouble

M. WARD Supernatural Thing CD/LP (Epitaph)
“Several times, as I listened to M. Ward’s Supernatural Thing, I asked myself what year it was. Was it 1952, and was I listening to a track from the Harry Smith Anthology? Was it 1972, and was I eavesdropping on the recording session for After the Gold Rush? No, it’s 2023, and M. Ward is one of the special contemporary artists who invite such questions. Ward has clearly mastered the whole vocabulary of American popular music and made serious decisions about how to employ it for his own ends. What Ward shares with Harry Smith’s artists and Neil Young is a context of musical and human values: authenticity and intimacy. Supernatural Thing’s original songs sound freshly pulled from the ground, with a little earth sticking to them. Ward’s lyric delivery has that slight rawness the ear loves, and his voice has quiet dignity and great tenderness. Supernatural Thing is an open-hearted, inviting album. The album’s guest stars – First Aid Kit, Shovels & Rope, Scott McMicken, Neko Case, Jim James, others – enliven the album with surprises.

TR/ST TRST LP [Reissue/2012] (Arts and Crafts)
Indie Exclusive * First time on colored vinyl * TRST, the debut self-titled record from Robert Alfons and Maya Postepski, features tales of lust, wax, and erotomania carried along on a dense black vapor of speed, space and tears. TRST’s “malevolent, sexy synth-pop” (Pitchfork) erupted out of Toronto’s fertile underground music scene alongside darkwave contemporaries Crystal Castles and Austra. Lead by Alfons’ otherworldly, gender-bending vocals and Postepski’s genre-defying production, the album deftly moves across electronic pop, industrial, trance, and more.

EIAFUAWNBirds In The Ground CD/LP (Numero)
While Duster went into hibernation in the year 2000, Clay Parton’s four-track never stopped rolling. Recorded alone at home over several years, Birds In The Ground is an album of 30-something, post-9/11 malaise. Under his Eiafuawn (Everything Is All Fucked Up And What Not) acronym, Parton hides beneath layers of fuzzy and clean guitars, his hesitant, cottony vocal disappear into noise. This deluxe pressing is packaged in a gorgeous tip on sleeve and includes the complete lyrics for this cryptic entry of the Dusterverse.

WYE OAK Every Day Like The Last CD/LP (Merge)
The nine songs on Every Day Like the Last, which were recorded in Jenn Wasner and Andy Stack’s current home state of North Carolina and Virginia at venues that include Stack’s backyard studio, compiles the singles Wye Oak has released since 2019’s glowing “Fortune” and includes three new songs. While it wasn’t conceived the way an album traditionally is, these songs coalesce because of the way they examine and grapple with ambiguities, which is reflected by the dual meaning of the title and it’s attendant track, a pensive, suspended-in-midair track that contemplates the importance of human connection. LP is black vinyl in a jacket + Euro sleeve + printed insert for full album download

AVETT BROTHERSEmotionalism LP [Reissue/2007] (Ramseur)
Reissue on sea glass blue vinyl. The Avett Brothers’ 2007 release Emotionalism is the album that caught the attention of legendary producer Rick Rubin and got him to sign the band to their first major studio. Emotionalism also was their first album to crack the charts. Full of new Folk, Blues and Bluegrass riffs for a modern world, it is a lively take on everything from romance to paranoia. Of course, they still kick in some solid Rock ‘N’ Roll for good measure.

BLACK DUCK Black Duck CD/LP (Thrill Jockey)
Black Duck captures a band already deeply in tune with one another. The three-piece super-group consists of Douglas McCombs, Charles Rumback, and Bill MacKay each have distinct musical voices that are instantly recognizable, yet blend seamlessly with one another. Their time performing together, playing to the moment and reading each other and the spaces they’re in, formed a fluency between the trio which allows them to follow each other down winding paths and short tangents alike. McCombs is a founding member of Tortoise, Pullman, and Brokeback as well as the long standing bassist for Eleventh Dream Day, an artist whose contribution to the music world can not be overstated.

Sam Prekop and John McEntire are two artists who both together and as individuals, have expanded the definition of rock. Beyond the work they did together in seminal The Sea and Cake they’ve both have continued to push themselves and the bounds of their art in countless other ways. Each is now esteemed for their singular musical voice and sonic innovations. Prekop has garnered acclaim for his solo releases in ensemble or on modular synthesis, as well as his visual art and photography. While McEntire has become one of the most celebrated engineers, composers, and drummers in forward-thinking music. With nearly three decades of experience working together in larger groups, this is their first full-length collaboration as a duo. Sons Of finds two master craftsmen working at the nexus of pristine production and skillful improvisation, forging compelling narrative arcs into glistening metropolises of infinite pulse, something they’d wanted to do for a long while it was a natural fit for two artists both drawn to incorporating electronic music into rock and jazz contexts. 

THE WATSON TWINSHoller CD/LP (Bloodshot)
Holler is the forthcoming album from The Watson Twins produced by Grammy Nominated producer Butch Walker and recorded “live” at his studio the Butcher Shop in Nashville. This collection of songs finds the twins leaning deeper into their Americana & Country roots. The LP features the same energetic, foot stompin’ feel as their single “Two Timin'” (Released 5.20.22). Accompanied by their Nashville based touring band, HOLLER is a true departure. From the blues inspired “Sissy Said” to the country soul of “Never Be Another You” the sisters showcase their celebrated sibling harmonies and strongest songwriting to date.

Orange colored vinyl reissue.

CRO-MAGS Age Of Quarrel LP (Astor Place Records)
Limited smoke colored vinyl LP pressing. The Age of Quarrel is the first album by the New York hardcore band Cro-Mags, originally released in 1986.

Bobbie Nelson’s musical career dates back to the 1940s. Naturally gifted on the piano, she played in churches, revival tents, concert halls and honky-tonks, eventually joining her brother Willie Nelson’s Family Band in the early ’70s. Amanda Shires says: “Much of my path seemed possible because I saw a woman working and making a career of music at a young age, and that woman was Bobbie Nelson.” Loving You is a collection of songs the duo have played and treasured their entire lives

BILLIE HOLIDAYSongs For Distingue Lovers LP (Verve)
Limited 180gm vinyl LP pressing housed in gatefold jacket. It is undeniable that Billie Holiday’s singing changed in her later years. Her voice darkened and shifted to a lower range. Her economy of expression distilled her sound to its essence – a kind of heightened speech. The classic album Songs For Distingue Lovers, her best work of the 1950s, has also deepened and become burnished with time. Verve’s Acoustic Sounds Series features transfers from analog tapes and remastered.

WILLIE NELSON Great Divide LP  (Lost Highway)
The Great Divide is the 50th studio album released in 2002 by American country music singer Willie Nelson. It contains several duets and musical collaborations with artists such as Rob Thomas of Matchbox Twenty, Lee Ann Womack, Kid Rock, Sheryl Crow, Brian McKnight, and Bonnie Raitt. 

PORTUGAL THE MAN Chris Black Changed My Life CD/LP (Atlantic)
Portugal the Man are back after a brief hiatus with a new record titled Chris Black Changed My Life, the follow up to their global hit record Woodstock. PTM have set a personal standard to “change things up” each time they go into the studio to record a new record. This time they went with famed producer Jeff Bhasker (Harry Styles, Kanye West, Beyonce, Mark Ronson, etc.) to challenge their process. The result of the collaboration brought a new depth to the music and a record that is in John Gourley’s, lead singer/songwriters, words “our most complete record that follows a storyline from beginning to end”. The record delivers on PTM’s eclectic-ness, pulling influence from music across the globe. Chris Black Changed My Life is a personal story about the loss of a friend and the struggle that comes with it and ultimately ends with power and endless influence those people will have on your life.

POWER TRIP – Live In Seattle LP (Southern Lord)
A razor-sharp recording that effectively proves how lethal Power Trip was in a live setting, Live In Seattle was recorded as the title states in Seattle at Neumos on May 28, 2018.  The set list for Live In Seattle is a selection of classic tracks from the band’s discography; Nightmare Logic and Manifest Decimation albums (the Grammy-nominated Best Metal Performance “Executioner’s Tax [Swing of the Axe],” “Conditioned to Death,” “Firing Squad,” and more), and even a deep cut/fan favorite, “Suffer No Fool,” these eleven thrashing crossover tracks are full of the fire and venom that only Power Trip can deliver.

Milan Records is proud to release 12, an intimate collection of twelve compositions by Ryuichi Sakamoto, written and recorded in Tokyo during his fight with cancer throughout 2021-2022. Each numbered title refers to its recording date. About the album, Sakamoto says: ”….after I finally “came home” to my new temporary housing after a big operation, I found myself reaching for the synthesizer. I had no intention of composing something; I just wanted to be showered in sound. I’ll probably continue to keep this kind of “diary.”

SECRET MACHINESThe Moth The Lizard and the Secret Machines LP (TSM Recordings)
Much like a frantic movie about “unfinished business” or “the one that got away,” Secret Machines spent the past few years finally putting the finishing touches on what should have been their fourth LP. Long regarded as a lost album, The Moth, The Lizard and the Secret Machines was actually put on pause in 2010 and massaged in the aftermath of 2020’s return-to-form record Awake in the Brain Chamber. This essentially makes it the missing link between that effort’s brash pop songs and 2008’s sorely overlooked self-titled LP. (The latter receives a long overdue digital reissue this fall — one that features a far more fitting tracklisting and robust final master from Slowdive drummer/like-minded solo musician Simon Scott). “If you listen to them in order,” says singer/multi-instrumentalist Brandon Curtis, “Awake in the Brain Chamber is basically a reaction to the Moth record — very tight and verse/chorus/verse/chorus rather than loose, sprawling and unconventional.”

Bobby’s 2019 tour ended in New York City and he had two days off before flying home to Finland. Leon invited him to the Diamond Mine to record some music. Bobby had been talking about wanting to stretch out lyrically and write about more esoteric subject matter, Leon was game. They recorded “Reasons” in one session which put the chemistry between the two on the world stage and sparked the idea of doing a full length album together. More than halfway through the recording process, they have decided to treat us to another two-sider of the new material.

NEKO CASEWild Creatures CD/LP
LUCINDA WILLIAMS Stories From A Rock N Roll Heart CD/LP
JAPANESE HOUSE In The End It Always Does CD/LP
GRIAN CHATTENChaos For The Fly CD/LP (Fontaines DC)
FRANK ZAPPA – Funky Nothingness LP
LOS AMIGOS INVISIBLESNew Sound OF The Venezuelan Gozadera LP reissue
10,000 MANIACSTwice Told Tales LP
THE BODY I Shall Die Here LP
GALACTICTchompitoulas LP
ARTHUR RUSSELLPicture Of Bunny Rabbit CD/LP
BODY OF LIGHTBitter Reflection CD/LP
HAYDEN PEDIGOHappiest Times I Ever Ignored LP