Music Releases 05-04-18
Lake Street Dive will release Free Yourself Up, its second album with Nonesuch Records, on May 4. The four-member band—drummer Michael Calabrese, bassist Bridget Kearney, singer Rachael Price, and guitarist/trumpeter Michael "McDuck" Olson—self-produced the album at Goosehead Palace Studios in Nashville with engineer Dan Knobler.
To Lake Street Dive, the title, Free Yourself Up, is both an exhortation to listeners and a statement of purpose for the band. In many ways, this is the band's most intimate and collaborative record, with the band working as a tightly knit unit to craft its ten songs. For this album, the quartet drafted touring keyboardist Akie Bermiss to join them in the studio as well as on stage. Adding another player to the process freed up the the band members to explore a wider range of instrumental textures, construct more full-bodied arrangements, and build on their well-known background harmonies.
World’s Strongest Man is the magnificent third solo album by Gaz Coombes. Inspired variously by Grayson Perry’s autobiography “The Descent of Man”, Frank Ocean’sBlonde, Californian weed, British woodlands, unchecked masculinity, Neu!, and hip hop (and a whole lot more besides) -- a remarkable collection of eleven deeply personal songs each set to expansive, addictive melodies. From the deep soul purge of the title track to the coruscating Fripp-goes-motorik sprint of “Deep Pockets” via the gorgeous cyclonic ballad “Slow Motion Life” and the raw-as-hell stream of consciousness panic attack of “Vanishing Act”, World’s Strongest Man is a bold, ambitious, free-thinking, future-facing rock‘n’roll record.
Horse Feathers feels like a secret you don’t really want to share. Over twelve years and five albums, a passionate fan base has experienced this band as a precious commodity that they want to keep close to their hearts. The signifiers of the band are there: Justin Ringle’s warm tenor and taut lyrics that speak of work, love, and other struggles; but on this album less of the song dynamics are achieved with strings and more with an exciting new rhythm section steeped in Northern Soul, creating a sound that leaps into the spotlight. Diehard fans are going to have to make room in the club house for a lot more people – with this album, the Horse Feathers secret is officially out.
Last year the Buttertones put out Gravedigging, but on their newest Midnight In A Moonless Dream, they’re digging deeper and discovering something dark. If Gravedigging felt like an oversaturated spaghetti-western desertscape, Midnight is much more biting—music made for the swampland that spit out Australia’s mad Scientists, or for the Mickey Spillane night city where the Cramps met all those garbagemen and werewolves. Or maybe the Buttertones are heading for an even more primal place: “Show more teeth / Bite your way in,” sings guitarist Richard Araiza. “You’re back in the jungle again!” They’d started in 2011 as a trio of music-school misfits. Araiza, bassist Sean Redman and drummer/multi-instrumentalist Modesto ‘Cobi’ Cobiån all wanted to pursue something more than boring industry adequacy, and soon locked together their current five-piece line-up with sax player London Guzman and guitarist Dakota Boettcher. With Gravedigging, they leapt from backyard parties to back-to-back tours, including their first trip to Europe, and scored a Coachella slot for 2018. It was a year that made them sharper, stronger, even more sophisticated. And when they were ready to record, they were ready to do things differently.
Reverence arrives as the follow-up to 2015’s Ire—Parkway Drive’s most successful album to date and a major force in boosting their ever-growing worldwide following. Like each album released since the band formed in 2002, Ire has been certified gold in their homeland of Australia; it also helped fuel their recent dominance at European festivals and won critical praise from outlets like Kerrang (who hailed Ire as a “fascinating album”). But while Ire brought Parkway Drive’s uncompromising artistry to bold new levels, Reverence pushes their creative ambition even further.
Life is Good on the Open Road is the welcome return that the group's legions of passionate fans have been waiting for. Led by the songwriting of lead singer Dave Simonett, the new songs touch on key elements from the entire spectrum of Trampled By Turtles body of work, while creating something that sounds fresh and invigorated. Simonett, and bandmates Erik Berry, Ryan Young, Dave Carroll, Tim Saxhaug and Eamonn McLain reunited at a cabin in the Minnesota woods to see if the special chemistry they once shared still existed. It did not take long for the magic to reveal itself with an invigorated sense of purpose and the result shines brightly on Life is Good on the Open Road.
Music For Installations is a collection of new, rare and previously unreleased music, all of which was recorded by Brian Eno for use in his installations covering the period from 1986 until the present and beyond. Over this time, he has emerged as the leading exponent of “generative” music worldwide and is recognised as one of the foremost audio-visual installation artists of his time.
Max Clarke has a knack for conjuring up warmth in his music, like endless summer or ageless youth. The 27-year-old's debut LP, Hollow Ground, crackles with the heat of a love-struck nostalgia, woven together with a palpable Everly Brothers' influence and retro sound. It reaches back into decades of plainspoken, unfussy, and squarely American storytelling and pulls it forth into 2018. Some of Hollow Ground bloomed from that same period of driven creativity that yielded EP Alien Sunset; both "Like Going Down Sideways" and "Don’t Want To Say Good-Bye" find new life on the LP. The rest is new. There's "Till Tomorrow Goes Away," a sheepish love song, thrumming with twangy guitar and a two-step rhythm. "Cash For Gold" channels buoyancy; a doo-wop effect on the sleepy backing vocals build out the dreaminess of Clarke's own affecting croon. Hollow Ground strikes the balance between cerebral and simplicity in his storytelling. His lyrics explore the raw realm of youth, its weightlessness and possibilities, but channeled through a lens of restraint. Someone who's old enough to know better but still gets drawn back in to the romanticism of teenage feelings - and knows how to take the listener along, too.
In 2004, THE GODDAMN GALLOWS began their rough and tumble voyage and haven't looked in the review mirror since. Leaving six studio albums in their path, they have been reinventing their music with every record. Spit from the heart of America's Rust Belt, arising from a night of flophouse violence. Drifting across the states, they cemented their sound in Portland, OR and later in Los Angeles, CA, where they lived in abandoned buildings, squatter camps, storage units and shoebox apartments. In 2007, they left everything behind and spent the next four years living out of whatever vehicle would get them to the next town. Building upon their original sound of twanged-out, punk rock gutterbilly (Life of Sin 2004 and Gutterbillyblues 2007), they began picking up stray musicians along the way and adding to their sound; washboard, accordion, mandolin and banjo (Ghost of th Rails 2009 and 7 Devils 2011) creating a sound referred to as hobocore, gypsy-punk or americana-punk, while never being stuck in any one sound. Enter 2018 and THE GODDAMN GALLOWS have reinvented themselves once again with The Trial. From rockabilly, psychobilly and punk rock, to bluegrass and metal, The Trial infuses disparate sounds into a new strange recipe of seamless genre bending profundities. Chock full of impromptu antics of the shocking variety and hauntingly eclectic instrumentation, THE GODDAMN GALLOWS have made legions of fans with their legendary, live shows. THE GODDAMN GALLOWS have now partnered with Sailor's Grave Records to help deliver the next chapter of their legacy to the world. The Trial begins now.
Sooner than most, Parker Millsap has learned to trust the process. Now four albums in at the ripe age of 24, the Oklahoma-born singer-songwriter has earned the chance to live his life as a professional musician. His work has been hailed by global audiences and industry alike while taking him to esteemed stages around the world. His three prior full-length releases -- 2012's Palisade, 2014's self-titled LP, and 2016's The Very Last Day -- showcased a primal mastery of acoustic folk rock, with their flourish for revelation and fiery dynamics, all recorded with extreme precision, purpose, and efficiency. But as he began work last year on his new album, Other Arrangements, Millsap opted for a change, allowing himself the time and space to let the work evolve in a new and distinct light. The result is his most accessible collection of songs to date, as Other Arrangements is filled with tunes whose inspiration trades divinity for ubiquity -- and some you can even dance to.
Spawned in Glastonbury, the British center of music festivals, Reef were born to deliver. The band found together in 1994, the height of brit-pop. Nevertheless, their sound was less like the Beatles and more accredited to The Rolling Stones and The Black Crows. It was a formula that payed, and which resulted in four incredibly well-received studio albums Replenish (UK #9, silver), Glow (UK #1, silver in first week, 38 weeks in charts), Rides (UK #3) and Getaway (UK #15). Their success and steadfast fan base can not only be credited to their great musical talent and signature style, but also to years and years of touring which earned them opening slots for The Rolling Stones or Soundgarden. Reef split ways in 2000 only to reunite again in 2010. Their return was well-overdue and the band nowhere near faded. In 2016, the band released the single 'How I Get Over' which made it to the Top 20 most played songs on BBC Radio 2 that year - all without being signed to a label.
If you attach credence to the name of Reef s albums allegorizing a specific phase of the band s history, Revelation is a special one. The band without a doubt have evolved musically well beyond their initial charm. 'Revelation' gives insight into this advancement, without giving any doubt that it is a true Reef album. Interestingly, the album also featured a duet with no other than Sheryl Crow. With songs like 'Revelation' or 'Like A Ship (Without A Sail)', the band doesn t simply try to copy their past sound but cleverly fuse their past musical experiences into what Reef is today a musically evolved and successful band which has accumulated a very devoted fan base and is full of new ideas. Revelation is available on CD, 180Gram Vinyl and Digital
Joey Cool, a staple of the Kansas City rap scene, is set to release his Strange Music self-titled debut album, Joey Cool, on 5/4. With a style and flow all his own, it’s no doubt the just-in-time-for-summer album will be impactful and establish Joey Cool as an up-and-coming force to be reckoned with on the Strange Music artist roster.
The breakthrough album that—in conjunction with the film of the same title—burst reggae through into the mainstream with its release in England in summer 1972 and in the US, on Island’s newly inaugurated reggae specialist imprint Mango, in spring 1973.
As film director and co-writer Perry Henzell said of the film, the first of its kind produced in the island nation’s first decade of independence, “There is no impact you will ever have greater than the impact of showing a society itself on the screen for the first time.”
The album captured the sound of Jamaica, and remains a vital document and evergreen collection of the best in Jamaican music.
2018 marks the 25th anniversary of Liz Phair’s landmark Exile in Guyville album. On May 4th, Matador Records will release Girly-Sound To Guyville, an extensive limited edition box set to celebrate the anniversary. The box set contains the first ever official release of the legendary Girly-Sound songs, which have been restored from their original three cassettes and mastered onto vinyl. It also contains a remastered double LP edition of Exile In Guyville and a 44 page book containing an extensive oral history, essays by Liz Phair and journalist Ann Powers, never before seen photographs, artwork and ephemera. Originally released in 1993, Exile In Guyville is a seminal album and a feminist landmark. Its legendary status has only grown over the years. It’s continually included in countless lists…Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest albums of all time + 100 best albums of the 90s, Pitchfork’s Top 100 albums of the 90s, etc. Numerous essays and think pieces have been written about it and the number of accolades piled on is endless. Since the release of Exile in Guyville, Liz Phair has continued to defy expectation and break barriers. She has released five albums, and is currently working on a new one with Ryan Adams. She has also composed music for television shows and received awards for that work. In November, it was announced that she would be fulfilling a longtime dream to be an author, and she received a two-book deal with Random House. Her first book will be called Horror Stories which focuses on “heartbreak, motherhood, and everything in between.” “A landmark of foul-mouthed, compromised intimacy, a tortured confessional, a workout in female braggadocio, and a wellspring of penetrating self-analysis and audacity.” — The New Yorker “Maybe the greatest work of traditional American indie rock that anyone has ever made. It’s also probably the best road-trip album of its generation and the signal of a rare talent’s arrival. It deserves to be celebrated. Let’s do that.” — Stereogum
On Fables, the forthcoming release from Ashland, Oregon favorites Slow Corpse, languid soul and gauzy dream rock float effortlessly over a bed of nuanced post-rock melodic complexity. Taut, arrestingly propulsive R&B-tinged melodic hooks ebb and flow against an ever-present undercurrent of woozy psychedelica. Born out of the creative union of artists from very different musical ecosystems, Fables manages to blend seemingly disparate elements together in a record that is both intellectually compelling, absolutely of-the-moment, and just plain catchy as hell. Lyrically, the record runs the emotional gamut and is a broad-stroke snapshot of the reality of a post-millennial twenty-something. "People don't need a message from the record" says lead singer Mitchell Winters. "I just want people to come to our shows and dance with me." Crack the cover on Fables, lose yourself in the spellbinding melodic narratives, and you'll find that's a near certainty.