CDs + Vinyl:
Ben Abraham – Sirens CD/2xLP+MP3 (Secretly Canadian)
Melbourne Australia’s Ben Abraham and his debut LP (originally released in late-2014 overseas), is a beautiful collection of relaxed acoustic folk with a focus on intense atmospheres to suit the cinema.
Atrocious Abnormality – Formed In Disgust CD (Comatose Music)
Second long-player from the North Carolina death metal machine.
Avenue Z – Azimimut CD/LP (Mondo Mongo)
Slovenly Recordings’ imprint Mondo Mongo proudly presents the Azimut LP from Avenue Z—the latest exploration from French fuzz-punk powerhouse Magnetix, featuring the synthesizer wizardry of Catholic Spray’s Antoine Quincerot. Fat and meandering keyboard ebb and flow drive this interplanetary force more to the side of prog-rock than anything resembling garage-rock… on the surface. The trademark Magnetix primal rock ‘n’ roll takeovers are omnipresent: complex, and as pile driving as ever via poisonous riffs and heady, hypnotic drums provided by Looch Vibrato and Aggy Sonora respectively.
The Band – The Weight: Live… Chicago ’83 CD (Rox Vox)
Seven years on from their iconic Last Waltz in San Francisco, Rick Danko, Levon Helm, Garth Hudson, and Richard Manuel reunited, performing (with backup from the Cate Brothers) to rapturous receptions in the US and Canada. Manuel in particular was in better form than he’d been for years, as The Band tore through a selection of classics from their back catalog, as well as the new track “Java Blues” and numerous oldies they’d played during their long apprenticeship. This set at the University of Chicago’s Mandel Hall on July 1, 1983 was broadcast on WXRT-FM at the outset of their reunion, and is presented here in it’s entirety with background notes and images.
Bas – Too High To Riot CD (Dreamville/Interscope)
Bas, Parisian export turned Queens expert, is the first artist signed to J. Cole’s Dreamville imprint.
Bazooka – Useless Generation CD/LP (Slovenly)
These eleven tracks of turbulent, psychedelic punk brilliantly commandeer the unique sense of youthful contempt of what surely must be the current global vortex of corruption and frustration, yet Bazooka sallies forth with dutiful abandon.
Begrime Exemonious – The Enslavement Conquest CD (Dark Decent)
New album from the Canadian death metal squadron.
Harry Bertoia – Complete Sonambient Collection 11xCD (Important)
In the late 1950s, Harry Bertoia (1915-1978), already a renowned American sculptor, began creating long-form, improvised pieces of music utilizing pure acoustic tones evoked from his sound sculptures. Around this time Bertoia came up with the term “Sonambient” to describe the music and environment created by his tonal sculptures and their lush harmonic overtones. This set features all 11 of Bertoia’s original records newly restored from their master tapes and housed in replica jackets. A heavy duty box, printed with metallic inks, holds the 11 discs as well as a 100-page book containing a lengthy historical essay, an interview with Harry Bertoia from the Smithsonian Archives of American Art, exclusive Sonambient-era material from the Bertoia archive, modern and archival photos of the Bertoia barn, and reflections on Bertoia from David Sefton, Tom Welsh, David Harrington (Kronos Quartet), and all three of Bertoia’s children.
Bestial Mouths – Heartless CD/LP (Cleopatra)
The chilling new full-length from avant garde electronic act Bestial Mouths combines harsh electronic sounds with female vocals that bring to mind Siouxsie Sioux and Diamanda Galas. (Limited copies pressed on clear vinyl.)
Big Ups – Before A Million Universes CD/LP+MP3 (Exploding In Sound)
Big Ups blend punk, post-punk, hardcore, and indie rock into a salty mash that gets stuck to the roof of your mouth. At their brightest, they have been likened to The Descendents, but at their sludgiest, they call to mind bands like Pissed Jeans and The Jesus Lizard.
The Bills – Trail Of Tales CD (Borealis Recordings)
This acoustic quintet from Canada’s West Coast is renowned for their instrumental virtuosity, lush vocal arrangements, and exuberant live performances.
Black Peaches – Get Down You Dirty Rascals CD/LP (1965/PIAS America)
Debut full-length album from Black Peaches, a new project from the very busy Rob Smoughton, who has worked in Hot Chip and Scritti Politti and as Grovesnor. Get Down You Dirty Rascals is a fine excursion into swamp-funk, recorded with a tight-but-loose band made up of members of Cold Specks and The Severed Limb.
Michael Blake – Fulfillment CD (Songlines)
Saxophonist Michael Blake’s ambitious new project, a septet plus guests, was inspired by the centenary of Vancouver’s tragic Komagata Maru incident, where a shipload of East Indian immigrants was denied entry and ultimately forced to depart using exclusionist laws.
Sarah Borges – Good And Dirty CD (MRI Associated)
New album from the Boston-based blugrass/twang-rocker. “Sarah Borges is a nice mix of Keith Richards and Dolly Parton. Not as far as looks go, that would be awful. But as a songwriter she’s right in between roadhouse rocker and country queen.” – The Boston Herald
Breakbot – Still Waters CD (WB)
“It should come as no great shock that ‘Still Waters’, the second album from French producer and Ed Banger resident Breakbot, isn’t a particularly surprising or challenging listen. That’s by no means a criticism — the producer and his label mates have consistently created some of the best French house and modern disco of the last decade. But if you weren’t expecting groovy basslines, disco synths and feel-good funk, then we’re not sure you’ve been paying attention. The new album from the French producer, real name Thibaut Berland, doesn’t deviate drastically from the formula, but would you want it to?” – Clash Music. Vinyl version due March 18.
Jackson Browne – Together Again… Live Syracuse ’71 2xCD (Rox Vox)
Having been an active musician since 1966, by 1971 Jackson Browne still hadn’t released a record, but was regarded as one of the more gifted singer/songwriters of his generation. This magical performance was broadcast on WNEW-FM as he opened for Bonnie Raitt in the intimate setting of the Jabberwocky Cafe in Syracuse, NY, on March 27, 1971. Later that year he signed with David Geffen, toured with Linda Ronstadt and Joni Mitchell, and recorded his debut album, making this set a document of a major talent just before stardom beckoned. It’s presented here in it’s entirety with background notes and images.
Danny Bryant – Blood Money CD (Jazzhaus)
“A fantastic guitar player… able to take a Fender Stratocaster and really make it sing…” — Joe Bonamassa