CDs + Vinyl:
Action Bronson – Mr. Wonderful CD (Atlantic Urban)
Mr. Wonderful is a culmination of every ingredient that’s made Action Bronson’s discography delectable. The musicality is grade A; live instrumentation turns the ablum into a wonderland of sonic discovery. “A Light In The Addict,” featuring Party Supplies and Fools Gold vocalist Black Atlass, and “City Boy Blues,” which boasts the bottom production of 88 Keys and top coating of Party Supplies, both soar with gorgeous orchestration. The latter track in such a zone that Bronson doesn’t spit a single bar, instead letting his vocals ride the wave of soulful rock.
Courtney Barnett – Sometimes I Sit And Think, Sometimes I Just Sit CD/LP (Mom+Pop)
“While other young musicians pour their most profound thoughts on to their lyric sheet, Courtney Barnett finds the tedium of modern life more interesting. The Australian’s debut album contains songs about hay fever (‘Dead Fox’), swimming (‘Aqua Profunda!’) and the suburbs (‘Depreston’), all delivered in wry lyrical couplets. The music is brilliant, too; fans of early noughties garage-pop acts like Giant Drag, Ben Kweller and Brendan Benson have much to admire with buzzy, upbeat songs such as ‘Elevator Operator.’ Buoyant melodies are tempered by grungy basslines and an occasional slacker-pop vibe. The closing brace of Kim’s Caravan and Boxing Day Blues exhibits a depth and darkness underneath Barnett’s droll exterior” – Irish Times. (Vinyl edition pressed on orange wax.)
Barren Earth – On Lonely Towers CD (Century Media)
Finnish progressive death metal outfit Barren Earth combines elements of modern and traditional death metal with ‘70s prog rock and folk.
James Bay – Chaos And The Calm CD/LP (Motown/Universal)
“Admittedly, James Bay ventures dangerously close to MOR territory. He’s a troubadour that enjoys his craft — weaving soul, blues, Americana and soft rock into an easily appreciated message, it’s not difficult to see his appeal. But while some may accuse him of not taking risks, or suggest that by writing popular and infectious melodies he’s any less entitled to respect, there is enough substance here to warrant continued interest in his development.” – Clash Music
Bee Gees – 1974-1979 5xCD (Reprise)
This five-CD clamshell box set features four original albums from 1974 to 1979: Mr. Natural, Main Course, Children Of The World, Spirits Having Flown and a bonus disc of non-album singles and B-sides from the era called The Miami Years.
Big Data – 2.0 CD (WB)
Big Data made their television debut playing “Dangerous” on Late Night with Seth Meyers and has been featured in the Wall Street Journal and Entertainment Weekly, named one of Rolling Stone’s “10 New Artists You Need to Know” and picked for USA Today’s “On the Verge” spotlight. The band’s new album 2.0 features a wide variety of guest spots from Rivers Cuomo (Weezer), Twin Shadow, White Sea, Jenn Wasner (Wye Oak), Dylan Rau and Ted Feldman (Bear Hands), Jamie Lidell, and Kimbra.
Björk – Vulnicura CD/LP (One Little Indian)
Vulnicura is the eighth studio album from Icelandic artist Björk. The album was written, produced and recorded in collaboration with Venezuelan producer Arca and British musician The Haxan Cloak. Of the album’s nine tracks, six are written by Björk with two co-written with Arca and one co-written with Spaces. Six songs are produced by Björk and Arca, one by Björk, Arca and The Haxan Cloak and two by Björk. All string arrangements are by Björk. The album was mixed by The Haxan Cloak, except two songs mixed by The Haxan Cloak and Chris Elms, and mastered by Mandy Parnell.
Blackberry Smoke – Holding All The Roses CD (Rounder)
An emotion-charged mix of bluesy rock, gospel soul, and country, with Charlie Starr’s raspy twang matched by his and Paul Jackson’s snarling guitars, Brandon Still’s hauntingly expressive organ and piano, and the propulsive sibling rhythm section of Richard and Brit Turner.
Bombadil – Hold On CD/LP (Ramseur)
Bombadil’s rapturous harmonies, sparkling instrumental work; sharp, poignant songwriting and imaginative arrangements still show off their folk roots, but traces of funk, country, rap, R&B, new wave inspired dance beats and the rock of the ‘50s and ‘60s also drift through the mix.
Joe Bonamassa – Muddy Wolf At Red Rocks 2xCD (J&R Adventures)
The blues guitarist tribute to legends Muddy Waters and Howlin’ Wolf on this double-disc live release. Also available on stand-alone DVD and Blu-ray. Vinyl version due March 31.
Buena Vista Social Club – Lost And Found CD (World Circuit)
Coming almost two decades after the release of the original Grammy-winning, self-titled LP Lost And Found is a collection of previously unreleased tracks––some of which were recorded during the original album’s sessions in Havana and others from the years that followed. The studio tracks presented here were recorded at the 1996 Egrem studio sessions in Havana and during a period of rich and prolific creativity stretching into the early 2000s following the recording of the original album. Lost And Found also features live recordings from the world tours of Buena Vista’s legendary veterans. Vinyl version due March 31.