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CDs + Vinyl:
18+ – Collect CD/2xLP (Houndstooth)
Recorded collaboratively between Justin and Samia’s respective Berlin and Honolulu residences, Collect is a product of each band member’s physical geographical distance and autobiographical individual growth: the fragmented meeting of displaced minds, reflecting on society’s interaction in a variety of contexts, from platonic, to professional, to economic.
50 Foot Wave – Bath White CDEP/12” (Happy Happy Birthday To Me)
50 Foot Wave is a side-project to Throwing Muses, created in 2003 to satisfy the noisy, mathy side of Kirsten Hersh’s creativity without throwing the Muses off course. They achieve their sixth release with Bath White, which sounds as energized and free-flowing as ever.
Architects UK – All Our Gods Abandoned Us CD/LP+MP3 (Epitaph)
“AOGHAU is a solid metalcore release, and the band has done a good job of sustaining themselves in the genre. The record sounds like Architects, but it doesn’t sound exactly as they have in the past. They seem to have a little more aggression or passion behind them this time around (or maybe that’s just me). – Sputnik Music
Band Of Skulls – By Default CD/LP+MP3 (BMG Rights Management)
Gritty English trio Band Of Skulls craft bluesy and ballsy slabs of atmospheric indie rock that echo the work of contemporaries like the Kills, Duke Spirit, and the Black Keys. Their latest album, By Default, was produced by Gil Norton (Pixies, Foo Fighters).
Peter Baumann – Machines Of Desire CD/LP+CD (Bureau B)
Peter Baumann (Tangerine Dream) presents his first solo album since 1983. From 1971 to 1977 Baumann was a member of the legendary German band Tangerine Dream, the inventors of the Berlin School of electronic music; he produced many seminal records in his Paragon studio (eg. works by Conrad Schnitzler, Cluster, Hans-Joachim Roedelius) and released several successful solo albums.
Olga Bell – Tempo CD (One Little Indian)
Olga Bell has made some incredibly forward-thinking music in the past, but her new album, Tempo, is a new direction for her. The songwriter, who recently caught a lot of attention as a collaborator on Dirty Projectors’ last studio album Swing Lo Magellan, revealed that her new songs are focused more on the physical aspect of music. [Vinyl version due June 10.]
Dierks Bently – Black CD (Capital Nashville)
New release from the multi-platinum selling country singer/songwriter. The slow-smoked grit of Bentley’s voice keeps the album rooted in country music, while it also appeals to audiences far beyond the boundaries with fresh sonic textures that flourish on the edge of arena rock. [Vinyl edition due July 8.]
Big Thief – Masterpiece CD/LP+MP3 (Saddle Creek)
Big Thief’s music, rooted in the songs of Adrianne Lenker, paints in vivid tones “the process of harnessing pain, loss, and love, while simultaneously letting go, looking into your own eyes through someone else’s, and being okay with the inevitability of death,” says Lenker. Masterpiece, Big Thief’s debut album, is filled with characters and visceral narratives, songs that pivot in the space of a few words. Adrianne’s voice and guitar playing speak of rich emotional territory with grace and insight. In her words, the record tracks “the masterpiece of existence, which is always folding into itself, people attempting to connect, to both shake themselves awake and to shake off the numbness of certain points in their life. The interpretations might be impressionistic or surrealistic, but they’re grounded in simple things.”
Bonnie Bishop – Ain’t Who I Was CD/LP (Plan BB)
“Bonnie Bishop fires twin barrels of Dusty In Memphis-worthy soul and Bible Belt country-blues with ‘Ain’t Who I Was.’ Produced by Dave Cobb, the title track to Bishop’s first album in nearly half a decade finds the Texan singing over B3 organ, strings and electric guitar, with Cobb focusing the spotlight on her sultry swoon of a voice.” – Rolling Stone
Black Rainbows – Stellar Prophecy CD/LP (Heavy Psych Sounds)
Italy’s stoner rock torchbearers Black Rainbows present their fifth album. Black Rainbows’ frontman Gabriele Fiori says, “You’ll be able to enjoy two long suites (‘Golden Widow’, ‘The Travel’), a couple of super fuzzy classics (‘Electrify’, ‘It’s Time to Die’), as well as a ‘70s-sounding hit (‘Woman’). Spacey, psychedelic and blistering.” For fans of: Fu Manchu, Black Sabbath, Monster Magnet, Motorpsycho.
Boyfrndz – Impulse CD/LP (Brutal Panda)
Complete with celestial melodies, propulsive rhythms and the soaring, ethereal falsetto of vocalist/guitarist Scott Martin, Boyfrndz have created a dark, cerebral work of chilling atmosphere and timeless soulful majesty.
Jim Breuer and The Loud & Rowdy – Songs From The Garage CD (Metal Blade)
Whether it’s Spinal Tap gloriously losing the plot, the escapades of Tenacious D getting them into trouble, or the phenomenon that is Dethklok tearing up the album charts, comedy and heavy music have long made for great bedfellows. Jim Breuer is a man who understands this, and with Songs From The Garage he delivers both in his inimitable style.
CDs + Vinyl:
Rez Abbasi & Junction – Behind The Vibration CD (Cuneiform)
On his new album, realized via his new electric band Junction, Rez Abbasi embraces his rock ‘n’ roll roots with a bear hug that encompasses post-bop, South Asian traditions, and state of the art sonics.
Mike Adams At His Honest Weight – Casino Drone CD/LP (Joyful Noise)
On Casino Drone, his third solo album, Mike Adams At His Honest Weight emerges as both a Hoosier power-pop auteur and a poet of the Indiana everyday. He crafts supremely catchy melodies and fashions ingenious arrangements that thrum with synthpop sparkle, shoegaze drone, classic rock fervor, and sonic textures that draw from easy listening as well as avant garde experiments.
Adult Jazz – Earrings Off! CD/LP (Tri Angle)
“The Leeds-based band Adult Jazz released one of 2014’s most surprising records, an ear-candy mix of warped sounds, disjointed melodies and fractured beats. Now the group is back with an equally captivating follow-up and a new track, ‘Earrings Off!’ The song and album are both largely about gender identity, a theme the group also explored on its 2014 record, Gist Is.” — NPR
Afroman – Happy To Be Alive CD (Cleopatra)
All new musical celebrations of Afroman’s favorite green herb as well as newly recorded versions of his classic tracks “Because I Got High,” “Palmdale,” “She Won’t Let Me F**k,” and “Crazy Rap.”
Against The Current – In Our Bones CD (Fueled By Ramen)
Against The Current is a pop-rock band from Poughkeepsie, New York, who formed in 2011. Signed to the label that brought you Paramore, Fall Out Boy and Twenty One Pilots to name a few, In Our Bones is the band’s debut album.
Alborosie – Freedom & Fyah CD/LP (VP)
One of reggae’s emerging masters of dubwise production, Alborosie has honed his craft through the creation of six studio albums (five for Greenleeves). Along the way, he has become the biggest selling European roots reggae artist. His latest album, Freedom & Fyah, demonstrates his production skill and depth of feel with these contemporary and authentic reggae jams.
JD Allen – Americana: Musings On Jazz And Blues CD (Savant)
This is tenor saxman and composer JD Allen’s tenth album as a leader and his fifth consecutive project for Savant. Once again, his regular sidemen for the past eight years, bassist Gregg August and drummer Rudy Royston, are back on board.
Terry Allen – Juarez [Reissue/1975] CD/LP+MP3 (Paradise Of Bachelors)
Legendary Texan artist Terry Allen occupies a unique position straddling the frontiers of country music and visual art; he has worked with everyone from Guy Clark to David Byrne to Lucinda Williams, and his artwork resides in museums worldwide. Widely celebrated as a masterpiece — arguably one of the greatest concept albums of all time — his spare, haunting 1975 debut LP Juarez is a violent, fractured tale of the chthonic American Southwest and borderlands.
GG Allin – Carnival Of Excess CD (Ponk Media)
GG Allin’s outlaw country swan song is wild, raw and unlike anything he had done before. Featuring takes on the Warren Zevon classic “Carmelita” and “Pick Me Up (On Your Way Down)” made famous by Patsy Cline, these are some of GG’s final recordings. [Stand-alone documentary DVD Carnival Of Excess is also available this week.]
Angel Du$t – Rock The F**k On Forever CD/LP+MP3 (Run For Cover)
Angel Du$t is a Baltimore supergroup-type crew made up of five dudes who are all in hardcore bands (Trapped Under Ice, Turnstile). Rock The F**k On is the band’s sophomore album. The album’s second single, “Upside Down,” is “a speedy ripper that makes me feel like I’m thirteen in the best way possible, head-banging by myself like the true pop-punk wallflower that I was.” – The Fader
Jeff Angell’s Staticland – Jeff Angell’s Staticland CD/2xLP+MP3 (UDR)
Welcome to Jeff Angell’s Staticland — blues rock which breathes new life into the genre.
Angry Angles – Angry Angles CD/LP+MP3 (Goner)
This 17-song collection comprises the complete studio recordings (including five unreleased tracks) of the Jay “Reatard” Lindsey and Alix Brown project that came together shortly after the mid- ‘05 demise of the former’s long-running primary endeavor, The Lost Sounds. The sheer immensity of Lindsey’s musical discography relative Reatard’s artist’s death in January of 2010 at the age of 29 is an undeniably impressive attribute of his legacy. But unlike other artists with massively prolific output, his militantly self-imposed standard of quality control assured this project was not simply a prolonged demo or practice session for what came next-his landmark solo debut Blood Visions. [Vinyl version includes a download of the album plus a board recording of a full set of the band in its prime at Gonerfest 3 (September, 2006).]
Richard Ashcroft – These People CD/LP (Harvest)
“Richard Ashcroft’s brilliant new album These People, a slice of classic Verve song craft with modernist electronic touches, was pieced together in his home basement studio in bursts over the past six years, in between ‘being a dad and living a standard-ish kind of life with dogs and school runs.’ Having discarded the distraction of his mobile phone, he tinkered at length with ‘new old keyboards,’ learning new crafts and trying reinvent the looping melodicism of Urban Hymns. ‘With all the studios closing down, record sales hit massively, the whole industry changing, I had to re-evaluate how I could still create these super records,’ he explains. “So [album track] ‘Out Of My Body’ is in the mould of ‘A Song For The Lovers’, ‘Bittersweet Symphony’, going right back. It’s a proper old-school record made with modern technology and old stuff to create something you’ve never heard before.’” – NME
Assassin – Combat Cathedral CD (Steamhammer)
New album from the German thrash metal pioneers. [Vinyl edition due June 3.]
CDs + Vinyl:
3OH!3 – Night Sports CD (Atlantic)
Night Sports sees 3OH!3’s Sean Foreman and Nathaniel Motte embracing cutting edge production while retaining their trademark raw humor. Tracks like “Mad At You” layer propulsive beats, soaring pop choruses, and spitfire hip-hop energy.
9Bach – Anian CD/LP (Real World)
“The Welsh-language band return with a set dominated by the exquisite vocals of Lisa Jên, who also adds piano and wrote many of the lyrics and melodies. At times, it sounds like a solo album. ‘Ifan,’ a gently pained song of parting, starts as a piano-backed solo and adds a wash of harp and other instruments, while ‘Heno’ is constructed around layers of vocal tracks – a technique repeated on the traditional ‘Sri Hwi Hwi,’ with the effective addition of bass and percussion.” – The Guardian
Anti-Nowhere League – The Cage CD/LP (Cleopatra)
Brand new studio album from the UK punk rock veterans.
Arbor Labor Union – I Hear You CD/2xLP+MP3/Cassette (Sub Pop)
Arbor Labor Union was born from a peach tree in Georgia in the American south. They play psychedelic, repetitious, and joyful rock and roll music. In 2014 they released the album Sings For You Now under the name Pinecones. In 2016 they decided to change their name, and have now released new album, I Hear You. Vice had this to say about their recently released single “Radiant Mountain Road”: “‘Radiant Mountain Road’ is a chugging, ballsy rock squall, with a pinch of psych and a smidge of QOTSA, that’ll stomp its way straight into your heart. The bass and drums at the top may make you want to break stuff. This can be a good thing. Elsewhere singer Bo Orr’s tone is simultaneously powerful and sexily insouciant.” Meanwhile, the band had this to say about the song (via haiku) — “Your mind is poisoned / Take joy for the antidote / And you will be cured.”
Astronautalis – Cut The Body Loose CD/LP (SideOneDummy)
Astronautalis is a Minneapolis indie hip-hop artist, often centering his music on original ideas, vivid lyricism and juxtaposing between indie rock and rap. Cut The Body Loose is his first album in five years, and was executive produced by Justin Vernon. “Tying together his own ‘bipolar Southern insanity’ with a torrent of dominant hip-hop hallmarks, Cut The Body Loose infuses Astronautalis’ jagged persona into every musical note and story-based anthem. On the surface, the album centres around themes of loss, disappointment, and struggles, delving deep into the pitfalls of life, but in the end, it’s an album the ultimately searches for redemption, aiming for triumph and facing off against all the sadness in the world. Although this may be Astronautalis’ most aggressive album, to call it angry, or even pessimistic, would be to miss the point. It’s an album about liberation carried upon waves of gritty, atmospheric, glitch-filled cuts like ‘Kurt Cobain’, ‘1515 Washington’, and ‘In The Tall Grass’, soaring dualities in ‘You Know What It Is’, and ethereal anthems like ‘Kudzu’ An album founded in reality and brought to life through vivid design, limitless diversity, and an unshakeable passion, Cut The Body Loose is both a mission statement and a triumphant arrival.” – Anthem Review
Avatar – Feathers & Flesh CD/2xLP (E1)
New album from the Swedish metal band. “Avatar crafts a near perfect sixth studio album, with many changes and musical improvements from their previous work.” – Sputnik Music