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Boo Boo Records Limited Edition Art Prints by Steve Thomas
To commemorate our storied 40+ year run in San Luis Obispo, we’ve partnered with Just Looking Gallery and artist Steve Thomas to bring you a series of limited edition, individually-numbered giclée art prints.
On their fourth LP, drummer Matt Correia, bassist Spencer Dunham, and guitarists Miles Michaud and Pedrum Siadatian turn their collective gaze outward and toward the horizon. Simply titled Lahs (a reference to a common misspelling of the band’s name), their new release finds the band turning in their most cohesive and ambitious work yet. The Allah Las seem to be transmitting from a place not found on any map. Those familiar with the band’s work will recognize their skillful melding of melodies and moods, but through that lens we see them venturing into new, exciting territories. Indeed, their growth not just as songwriters, but as performers, arrangers, and producers – is clearly audible. Opener “Holding Pattern” conveys what the title suggests; you’ve almost arrived, you can see the ground, but you’re not quite there yet. Airy, ethereal harmonies chant the title, holding you in suspense – and eventually give way to an entirely different mood just before the fade – as if telling the listener “we’ve landed safely. [Indie store exclusive colored vinyl pressing also available.]
Big Thief – Two Hands CD/LP+MP3 (4AD)
Big Thief had only just finished work on their recently released third album, U.F.O.F. – “the celestial twin” – days before in a cabin studio in the woods of Washington State. Now it was time to birth U.F.O.F.’s sister album – “the earth twin” – Two Hands. 30 miles west of El Paso, surrounded by 3,000 acres of pecan orchards and only a stone’s throw from the Mexican border, Big Thief (a.k.a. Adrianne Lenker, Buck Meek, Max Oleartchik, and James Krivchenia) set up their instruments as close together as possible to capture their most important collection of songs yet. Where U.F.O.F. layered mysterious sounds and effects for levitation, Two Hands grounds itself on dried-out, cracked desert dirt. In sharp contrast to the wet environment of the U.F.O.F. session, the southwestern Sonic Ranch studio was chosen for its vast desert location. The 105-degree weather boiled away any clinging memories of the green trees and wet air of the previous session. Two Hands had to be completely different – an album about the Earth and the bones beneath it. The songs were recorded live with almost no overdubs. All but two songs feature entirely live vocal takes, leaving Adrianne’s voice suspended above the mix in dry air, raw and vulnerable as ever.
The Building – Petra CD/LP (Concord)
The Building’s remarkable and intimate new album Petra was written, produced, and performed by acclaimed multi-instrumentalist/songwriter Anthony LaMarca, also known for his role as guitarist in The War On Drugs. Petra – which shares its name with the LaMarcas’ beloved German Shepherd – is a bare-boned, often brutally blunt, new work from a gifted musician-songwriter forced by fate to confront life’s hardest truths and consequences. LaMarca had just begun recording the album when a spell of intense back pain led to his being diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma. Originally, LaMarca was diagnosed in the middle of making his first as The Building, Reconciliation. He immediately started treatment, which brought the disease into complete remission. His disease relapsed in 2018 while in the middle of making Petra. The experience inspired a second meaning to the album’s title, the acronym P-E-T-R-A, or “Peace’s Eternal Truth Renews All”. Moreover, LaMarca’s physical struggle has resulted in the most powerful work of The Building’s still-growing canon, a vivid series of deeply personal songs such as “Purifer” and the LP-opening “Transformed”, made even more impactful through strikingly simple arrangements and raw, heartfelt performance.
Angel’s Pulse is the new mixtape from Blood Orange aka Devonté Hynes. It follows the widely celebrated and critically acclaimed album Negro Swan, released last year. “My new record is called Angel’s Pulse and I performed, produced and mixed the entire thing myself,” Hynes notes. “I’m calling it a mixtape. I have a habit through the years of making records that I just give to friends, or on tape to people on the street, or no one. Usually this material is made directly after the album I’ve just put out. Somewhat of an epilogue to the thing I’ve made before. This time…I decided to release it. I put as much work and care into it as I do with the albums I’ve released, but for some reason trained myself into not releasing things the rate at which I make them. I’m older now though, and life is unpredictable and terrifying…so here you go mates. Hope you enjoy.” Guests include: Toro y Moi, Kelsey Lu, Ian Isiah, Justine Skye, Project Pat, Gangsta Boo, Tinashe, Porches, BennY RevivaL, Arca and Joba. [Indie store exclusive vinyl pressing also available.]
Bonnie Bishop – The Walk CD/LP (Plan B)
The first thing that registers about Bonnie Bishop’s stirring album The Walk is that the seasoned Grammy winner is no longer trying to outrun herself; she owns whatever has come her way, good wind or ill. It’s an uplifting confessional that she dedicates “to all who wander” – laying down searing, emotionally-charged variations to award-winning producer Steve Jordan’s (Robert Cray, John Mayer, Buddy Guy) powerhouse production. She does so in a voice that aches and arches and grabs and never let’s go. The Walk soars as her most honest effort to date. It’s a groove-laden, lyrical lightning bolt from which the tonic of self-revelation pours forth on songs such as the grateful “Every Happiness Under The Sun” and the gut-wrenching “I Don’t Like To Be Alone”. The album’s euphoric closer, “Song Don’t Fail Me Now”, is Bonnie’s heartfelt testament that music can heal the spirit.
City And Colour – A Pill For Loneliness CD/2xLP (Still)
Through a kaleidoscope of lush guitars, ethereal orchestration, and heavenly delivery, City And Colour alchemically transforms life’s turbulence into waves of blissful, bold, and brilliant alternative anthems. Under this banner, singer-songwriter Dallas Green siphons serenity from stress on his sixth full-length studio album, A Pill For Loneliness. Ultimately, these 11 tracks illuminate an entrancing and engaging emotional expanse, balancing two extremes with eloquence and energy. “I wrote a lot of dark songs and wrapped them in the most beautiful sounds we could find,” he explains. Introductory single “Astronaut” lifts off on a dusty rumble of clean guitar and a steady beat. Green’s voice immediately captivates as he carries a divine and dynamic hook before an echoing solo. Elsewhere, “Strangers” hinges on a buoyant riff and hummable groove. It charges towards a ghostly refrain awash in reverb as he pleads, “Don’t wake me when this is over, just let me drift amidst my dreams.” From the slow burn build-up of “Living In Lightning”, which borrows its title from John Steinbeck’s East Of Eden, to the gorgeous last gasp of the piano-driven “Lay Me Down,” A Pill For Loneliness unlocks the catharsis hinted at by the title. [Limited indie store exclusive colored vinyl pressing also available.]
Binker Golding – Abstractions Of Reality Past and Incredible Feathers CD/LP (Gearbox)
Binker Golding truly is the saxophonist of the moment. A highly skilled musician, accomplished composer, and occasional conductor, Golding has performed with everyone from Moses Boyd and Yussef Dayes to Evan Parker and Denys Baptise. Abstractions of Reality Past and Incredible Feathers is his first quartet album, and typically, it goes against the grain. It constitutes a departure from Binker’s more rhythm and riff-heavy collaboration with Moses Boyd as well as his avant-garde project with Elliott Galvin. With all compositions and arrangements by the band leader, there is a greater emphasis on harmonic and melodic development, harking back to the more through-composed jazz fusion of the ‘80s and ‘90s. Expect a contemporary twist in the form of London jazz scene heavyweights; Joe Armon-Jones on piano, Daniel Casimir on double bass, and Sam Jones on drums.
Beth Hart – War In My Mind CD/2xLP (Mascot Label Group)
Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter Beth Hart is as real as it gets on her new Rob Cavallo-produced album War In My Mind. In a music industry full of glossy production and airbrushed photoshoots, this is one artist who throws down her cards, shares her darkest secrets and invites you to join her for the ride. The sleeve shot of Beth pounding a piano below her own personal storm cloud is a fitting representation of new material that hits like a force of nature. It opens with the anti-love song “Bad Woman Blues”. A stately piano ballad that swells to an epic anthem, the title track explores the addiction-troubled years when Beth felt she couldn’t go on while the emotionally raw “Let It Grow” is “about having so much hope in the face of being hopeless.” The hedonistic groove of “Try A Little Harder” evokes the tumbling dice of the Vegas Strip and is Hart “jumping into my father’s body back in the ‘70s when he was a high-roller.” [Deluxe CD box set adds two bonus live tracks, coasters, postcards and stickers. Limited blue colored vinyl pressing also available.]
The follow-up to 2016’s Summer 08, Metronomy Forever features 17 tracks. Its length is born from a desire for breathing room, from not wanting to stuff the hits together like a bouquet of petrol station roses – a modern way of listening to music. Metronomy’s innate skill for blending off-kilter funk, energizing club vibes and esoteric pop is interspersed with some mood-setting, glistening and melodic electronic tracks. The band’s leader Joseph Mount called upon a variety of inspirations for this album. Most notably, he wanted to replicate the feeling of listening to the radio, with an infinite quality, sumptuous songs of different styles, ever rolling, helping to lighten your mood. Moving away from the bustle of his former Parisian home to take up residence atop a hill in the garden of England had an impact, infusing the album with a sense of tranquility and a calm joy that reflects the relative happiness of his existence. Also influential was time spent working on Robyn’s critically adored Honey album, with a similar feeling of emotional, intense, carnal mania informing songs such as “Sex Emoji” and “Salted Caramel Ice Cream”.