NEW RELEASES for the week of April 1, 2016:
the alt-rock band’s 10th studio album. The first track from the highly anticipated album, “Thank God For Girls” (“insanely catchy new single”-NPR), has charted across multiple genres. Rivers Cuomo described this release as a “beach album”, based on his experiences ” hanging around the Westside of Los Angeles, with people in Venice and Santa Monica, the beach, the Hare Krishnas, the Sikh on roller blades with the guitar, girls on Tinder within a 4 mile radius, seeing other bands, the kids from La Sera.” Cuomo specifically used Tinder to meet people for song ideas. Sonically, Cuomo credited The Beach Boys as a major influence. The album’s producer, Jake Sinclair, was also “determined to return Weezer to their ’90s glory”, combining the “brashness and unpredictability of Pinkerton with the summer Beach Boys grunge pop of the Blue Album”.
After a brief 25 hour delay in Morocco on his way from Niger, Bombino arrived in Woodstock, New York to record his 2016 album at Applehead Studio with Dave Longstreth (Dirty Projectors). Longstreth proved to be a fantastic match for Bombino as this album’s producer. He has a deep respect for the Saharan music tradition and guided their sessions with a gentle but skilled hand. Fans of Bombino and Tuareg music in general will notice a few remarkable innovations on this album. The first is the introduction of a new style that Bombino is pioneering that he affectionally refers to as ‘Tuareggae’ – a sunny blend of Tuareg blues/rock with reggae one-drop and bounce. Another is the first-ever use of Western vocal harmonies in recorded Tuareg music, (due to Longstreth’s influence) which give the songs new depth and color. Finally, the band is tighter and more energetic than ever before. The result is Bombino’s best, most well-rounded, and groundbreaking album to date.
RF continues and – with sprinklings of pedal steel, drums, electric guitar, and keyboards – expands the sound of his last acoustic set. Fulks’s richly emotional storytelling is illuminated by his instrumental prowess and emotional voice. At 53, he is philosophically reflective, writing “with clear eyes and a full heart” (Ken Tucker, NPR). Don’t get us wrong, his wit is still as quick as his picking; but it’s reflected through the lens of fatherhood, marriage, middle age, and the literary voices he is drawn to and draws from: Flannery O’Connor, Anton Chekhov, Mary Lavin, Frank O’Connor, Javier Marias, James Agee. Three new songs-“Alabama at Night,” “America Is A Hard Religion,” and “A Miracle” – are meditations inspired by Agee’s 1936 trip to Alabama, the sojourn that fueled his furious polemic on American poverty, Let Us Now Praise Famous Men
Live From A&R Studios: New York, August 26, 1971 was initially a radio broadcast that originally aired on WPLJ. This set features the band steamrolling through a set of songs including “Statesboro Blues, ” “Trouble No More, ” “One Way Out, ” “In Memory of Elizabeth Reed” and “Hot ‘lanta.” The recording was widely bootlegged, but has been remixed from the original multi-track recording. The quality, dynamic performance and ambience encompassed herein all at once make for a quite staggering sonic experience, one that fans of this legendary act in it’s original line-up will relish alongside the groups other essential releases
Soul singer Charles Bradley’s star has been on the rise since the release of his widely praised 2011 debut album No Time For Dreaming, and his ascent has continued long after the release of his triumphant second album, 2013’s Victim of Love. Dubbed “The Screaming Eagle of Soul,” the singer presents his highly anticipated third album Changes. The album is named for his popular, “smoldering” (SPIN) cover of the Black Sabbath track. “I think about the lyrics very closely when I sing ‘Changes’ and get emotional,” notes Bradley. “It makes me think of my mother and the changes in my life since she passed away.” By now, Charles Bradley’s remarkable, against-all-odds rise has been well documented: how he transcended a bleak life on the streets and struggled through a series of ill-fitting jobs before finally being discovered by Daptone’s Gabriel Roth. Charles Bradley has made a name for himself as a riveting live performer. He’s taken his show to venues and festivals across the globe including Coachella, Glastonbury Festival and Primavera Sound. Bradley’s also performed on famed stages including the Apollo Theater-the same place he saw his idol James Brown perform when he was 14 years old, and the Beacon Theatre where he’s separately supported The Tedeschi Trucks Band and the Afghan Whigs.
2016 album from the veteran electronic pop duo. Produced and mixed by Stuart Price in Los Angeles, the album was written in London and Berlin. The record features 12 new Tennant/Lowe compositions including the lead single, “The Pop Kids,” evoking the London club scene of the early ’90s. The band notes, “It was fantastic to be back in the studio with Stuart Price continuing from where we left off with Electric and we’re thrilled with the results.”
Deluxe CD/DVD edition. 2016 live release. The Used celebrated their 15th anniversary as a band with a special live acoustic performance from The Palace in Los Angeles, featuring a career spanning set list. This album was recorded at the band’s intimate unplugged storyteller set with a once in a lifetime performance including a four-piece string quartet, harpist, pianist, extra percussion and a three-piece gospel choir.
2016 album from the recent Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame inductees. Cheap Trick is an indisputable American institution, beloved around the globe since 1974 for their instantly identifiable and hugely influential brand of pop rock ‘n’ roll. Bang Zoom Crazy… Hello, their 17th studio album, will be following the band’s induction into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. Having an excess of 20 million sales and more than 40 gold and platinum certifications for their multi-award winning catalog, this quartet continues their reign as the top progenitors of power-pop.
Andrew Bird has widened the breadth of his art by directly reflecting his own human experience. With key contributions from Fiona Apple and Blake Mills, Are You Serious attains a level of expression that’s a personal, evolutionary leap. Are You Serious is the second record Bird has made with producer Tony Berg, following 2005’s breakthrough The Mysterious Production of Eggs. Andrew Bird was initially known through his work with the band Squirrel Nut Zippers before forming Bowl of Fire, and is now best known as a solo musician. Bird’s primary instrument is the violin, but he is also proficient at various other instruments including the guitar, the mandolin, the xylophone, whistling, and the glockenspiel.
Original soundtrack to the 2016 motion picture. Miles Ahead is Don Cheadle’s wildly entertaining and moving exploration of Miles Davis. This is a perfect primer on Davis’ career for the new fan and a brilliant audio keepsake of the film for those who’ve studied his works inside and out. The album features 11 tracks from across Miles’ catalogue from 1956 to 1981, select dialogue from the film featuring Cheadle in character, and five original compositions written, co-written, produced or performed exclusively for Miles Ahead by Robert Glasper. These cues include “What’s Wrong with That?” a jam that closes the movie imagining Cheadle as Miles playing in the present day with guest performers Glasper, Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Gary Clark, Jr. And Esperanza Spalding; plus “Gone 2015,” an end-credits song featuring guest verses from rapper Pharoahe Monch. Cheadle also pens new liner notes for the album discussing the selection and creation of the songs on the soundtrack.
J. Stalin is a prolific artist from West Oakland, CA. After last year’s full release, Tears of Joy, J. Stalin is back again in 2016 with the third installment of his Body Snatchers series. Serving as a project to keep the streets fed until his next full length release, Body Snatchers 3 delivers the type of tracks that got J. Stalin to the point he is at now.
from the five-time Grammy nominee. Anoushka Shankar returns with her fourth album on DG, Land of Gold, a fervent response to the humanitarian crisis of displaced people fleeing conflict and poverty. With exquisite arrangements blending genres and musical collaborations, Land of Gold is a message of enduring hope from the virtuoso sitar player, featuring guest vocalists M.I.A. (“Jump In (Cross the Line)”) and Alev Lenz (“Land of Gold”) as well as actress Vanessa Redgrave (“Remain the Sea”).
Amen & Goodbye, the 2016 album by experimental rock band Yeasayer, features their trademark sound, without sounding like anything the band has done before. They have created a collection of strange fables from the Bible of a universe that does not yet exist. Yeasayer formed in Brookly, New York in 2006. The band consists of Chris Keating, Ira Wolf Tuton, Anand Wilder and Cale Parks.
Explosions In The Sky’s sixth album, and first non-soundtrack release since 2011’s Take Care, Take Care, Take Care. True to its title, The Wilderness explores the infinite unknown, utilizing several of the band’s own definitions of “space” (outer space, mental space, physical geography of space) as compositional tools. The band uses their gift for dynamics and texture in new and unique ways-rather than intuitively fill those empty spaces, they shine a light into them to illuminate all the colors of the dark. From the electronic textures of the opening track to the ambient dissolve of closer “Landing Cliffs,” The Wilderness is an aggressively modern and forward-thinking work-one that wouldn’t seem the slightest bit out of place on a shelf between original pressings of Meddle and Obscured By Clouds. It is an album where shoegaze, electronic experimentation, punk damaged dub, noise, and ambient folk somehow coexist without a hint of contrivance-and cohere into some of the most memorable and listenable moments of the band’s expansive body of work-proper studio albums and major motion picture soundtracks alike. The progressive ambience of early Peter Gabriel, the triumphant romanticism of The Cure in their prime, and the more melancholy moments of Fleetwood Mac all inform the curious beauty of The Wilderness. The uncanny ability to reconcile the tension between discordant, nightmarish cacophony and laid-back, Laurel Canyon-inspired folk-rock is a cornerstone of this album, and the center of Explosions in the Sky’s remarkable evolution. If The Earth Is Not A Cold Dead Place was the defining album of Explosions in the Sky’s career, The Wilderness is their [re]defining album.