Neko Case: Hell-On
Producer/singer/songwriter Neko Case has won a large and loyal audience for her smoky, sophisticated vocals and the downcast beauty of her music. Now more than 23 years into her musical calling, Case is the consummate career artist-fearless and versatile, with a fierce work ethic and a constant drive to search deeper within herself for creative growth. Hell On is an indelible collection of colorful, enigmatic storytelling that features some of her most daring, through-composed arrangements to date. Produced by Neko with help from Bjorn Yttling (Peter Bjorn & John), Hell On is simultaneously the most accessible and most challenging album in a rich and varied career that’s offered plenty of both. Rife with withering self-critique, muted reflection, anthemic affirmation, and her unique poetic sensibility, the 12 tracks of Hell On – which features collaborations such as Joey Burns, Beth Ditto, Kelly Hogan, KD Lang, AC Newman, Paul Rigby, Laura Veirs, and more.
Dave Alvin & Jimmie Dale Gilmore: Downey To Lubbock
Downey To Lubbock was born by immaculate inspiration from live shows Grammy winner Dave Alvin and Grammy nominee Jimmie Dale Gilmore performed together in 2017. Just the two of them were swapping songs and cutting up, each with a guitar and a heart full of soul, musicians who’ve been on the road their entire adult lives. The result is an album of blues, rock and folk inspired tunes that both of their fans will enjoy. The album contains 12 songs – 10 covers and two originals – and is destined to be a classic Americana album from two Americana legends.
Nicki Bluhm: To Rise You Gotta Fall
After nearly a decade spent with the Gramblers, recent high-profile collaborations (Phil Lesh, Infamous StringDusters, Ryan Adams), and a split from her husband and musical mentor, vocalist and songwriter Nicki Bluhm is stepping out on her own with her new album, To Rise You Gotta Fall. The songs were written over a two-year period in Bluhm’s life and chronicle her fundamental life changes, which found the West Coast native living in Nashville, TN. “These songs are the conversations I never got to have, the words I never had the chance to say, and the catharsis I wouldn’t have survived without,” she says. Recorded in Memphis, TN at legendary Sam Phillips Recording, Bluhm brought in producer Matt Ross-Spang (Margo Price, Jason Isbell), for these live band, analog sessions. The studio band includes Will Sexton (guitar), Ross-Spang (guitars), Ken Coomer (drums and percussion), Al Gamble (Hammond B3), Rick Steff (piano), Dave Smith (bass), with Sam Shoup (string arrangements) and various special guests. To Rise You Gotta Fall tells the story of a woman searching for light among darkness and reveals her emergence as a powerful songwriter and vocalist of great depth and immediacy.
Father John Misty: God’s Favorite Customer
God’s Favorite Customer (alternatively Mr. Tillman’s Wild Ride) is the fourth studio by American musician Josh Tillman, under the stage name Father John Misty. The album was primarily produced by Tillman himself, alongside a variety of collaborators including Jonathan Rado and previous engineers Trevor Spencer and Dave Cerminara, with further contributions by Tillman’s long-time producer Jonathan Wilson. It also features a variety of musical collaborators, including The Haxan Cloak, Weyes Blood, Mark Ronson and members of Tillman’s touring band. Maintaining a steady output of solo recordings since 2004, Tillman was a former member or toured with Demon Hunter, Saxon Shore, Fleet Foxes, Jeffertitti’s Nile, Pearly Gate Music, Siberian, Har Mar Superstar, Poor Moon, Low Hums, Jonathan Wilson, Bill Patton, The Lashes, Stately English, and has toured extensively with Pacific Northwest artists Damien Jurado, Jesse Sykes, and David Bazan.
The Ghost BC: Opus Eponymous
A daringly beautiful combination of satanic rock music with an almost unthinkable pop sensibility, 2010’s Opus Eponymous (Latin for self-titled work) is where it all began for the beautifully dark global phenomena Ghost! Standing motionless and anonymous beneath the painted faces, hoods and robes, the nameless ghouls of Ghost deliver litanies of sexually pulsating heavy rock music and romantic lyrics, which glorify and glamorize the disgusting and sacrilegious. The simple intention to communicate a message of pure evil via the most effective device they can find: Entertainment. This is black metal at it’s most original and deceiving; compositions such as “Ritual” and “Death Knell” majestically weave their melodic spell of evil through the senses until the listener finds themselves utterly possessed and open to any diabolical suggestion.
These came out last week (May 25)
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