CDs + Vinyl:
2 Chainz – Pretty Girls Like Trap Music CD (Def Jam)
The follow up to last year’s Hibachi For Lunch EP, Pretty Girls Like Trap Music features a star-studded lineup, consisting of Drake, Travis Scott, Gucci Mane, Quavo, Nicki Minaj, Ty Dolla Sign, Jhene Aiko, Trey Songz, Pharrell, Swae Lee and others.
Arcadea – Arcadea CD/LP (Relapse)
Drummer/vocalist Brann Dailor (Mastodon), guitarist/keyboardist Core Atoms (Zruda, Gaylord) and keyboardist/guitarist Raheem Amlani (Withered, Scarab) are said pioneers, the space wizards of psychedelic soundscapes where organic drums collide with synthetic keys to create an infinite transmission from an event horizon. They go by Arcadea and their otherworldly brand of psyche-electric, synth-driven, metallic madness sounds alien yet somehow familiar.
Big Bad Voodoo Daddy – Louie Louie Louie CD/LP (Savoy)
The incomparable kings of swing return with an electrifying celebration of jazz legends Louie Armstrong, Louie Jordan and Louie Prima.
Big Star – The Best Of Big Star CD/2xLP (Stax)
If the short-lived but fondly remembered Big Star could have experienced popular success in direct proportion to its posthumous influence, the rangy Memphis rock quartet would have lived up to its ambitious name, and then some. With the possible exception of the Velvet Underground, no other underground pop band has left such a lasting and indelible legacy. Taking the gritty soul of Memphis rhythm and blues and fusing it with the artful melodies and vocal harmonies of British power pop, and injecting it all with a flailing, pre-punk, garage-band energy, Big Star created a unique sound with a potentially universal appeal. This new Best Of compilation celebrates the founding fathers of power pop with 16 tracks spanning all three of their LPs (1972’s #1 Record, 1974’s Radio City and Third, released after the group disbanded). Includes rare single versions of some of their most popular songs, plus new liner notes.
David Bowie – Cracked Actor (Live Los Angeles ’74) 2xCD (Rhino)
A previously unreleased live recording from Los Angeles on September 5, 1974. This was a pivotal gig in the transition between the Diamond Dogs tour and the Philly Dogs tour. [Limited vinyl edition was released on RSD 2017.]
Broadside – Paradise CD (Victory)
As soon as the majestic opening licks of the album’s lead off track burst onto the speakers, it’s obvious that Broadside are setting bigger and better goals the second time around. An album of boundless energy, Paradise is a culmination of two years’ worth of experiences, sacrifices, and tireless effort, and the end result is a go-for-broke tour de force in pop tinged punk rock. With the line “The sun peeking from the tall palm trees,” the title track “Paradise” sets the personality for a summer sunshine-stained statement. “The whole concept of Paradise is that you should chase that little view of happiness you create in your mind,” explains frontman Ollie Baxxter. “We often put our dreams and desires to the side believing they’re unrealistic, but this record is about building a bridge to reach your goals, your dream, your…Paradise.” [Vinyl edition due June 30.]
Sammy Brue – I Am Nice CD/LP+MP3 (New West)
Sammy Brue embodies the kind of wisdom, talent and natural empathy that are often signs of age and maturity, and yet at 15 years old, he can place himself in the shoes of others, real or fictionalized, and write stories about them. The Ogden, UT based songwriter has been writing songs since the age of 10. I Am Nice is a brilliant album with nuanced dimension that provides emotional resonance to Brue’s songs which Rolling Stone described as “a collection of devastatingly beautiful songs that touch on heartbreak, jealousy, God and suicide.” They would further declare Brue “an Americana prodigy.” Though Sammy may appear quiet and unassuming, his songs speak volumes. From busking at Sundance at age 10, to opening for Justin Townes Earle, John Paul White, Lucinda Williams and John Moreland to mention a few, as well as performing at Summer Set and the Newport Folk Festival, you will be hearing a lot about Sammy Brue.