Music Releases 05-15-20
Sleaford Mods are set to continue their onslaught into 2020 with the release of All That Glue, a collection of songs spanning the last seven years of the bands career; an array of crowd pleasers, B sides, unheard tracks and rarities for fans and the curious, released via Rough Trade.
North Carolina's cherished Americana band is back with a new look and feel! Chatham County Line's 12th studio album, Strange Fascination features newly added drums and modern effects that drive a revamped sound. From the dreamy shuffle of 'Oh Me Oh My' to the bold acceptance of 'Leave this World,' the group demonstrates their sharp self-awareness with a good dose of humor. A beautifully crafted album, Strange Fascination highlights the band's exceptional songcraft and musicianship, as well as their continual innovation.
2020 release. Thao & the Get Down Stay Down, the San Francisco-based band fronted by singer and songwriter Thao Nguyen, release their fifth studio album Temple. The album is among Thao's most open and honest work yet, finding her coming out in her public life after a long career in which she kept her queer identity quiet in an effort to avoid turmoil with and alienation from a family and culture she deeply loves. Temple follows Thao & the Get Down Stay Down's 2016 album A Man Alive which was released to widespread critical praise. NPR Music called it a 'brilliant, jarring new album'[Nguyen's] most rewarding work yet,' while Pitchfork raved that it is 'Nguyen's most rhythmically robust, gleefully discordant release to date' and Stereogum called it 'explosive and melodically dense.' Over the past year Thao served as guest host of the acclaimed podcast Song Exploder.
Hamilton Leithauser has proven himself as a master collaborator and solo artist throughout his nearly 20 year career. Following his time as the frontman of the Walkmen, Leithauser released the critically acclaimed collaboration with Rostam "I Had a Dream That You Were Mine" in 2016. The album debuted at #1 on Billboard's Heatseekers Chart, #1 New Artist Album, and was named one of the Year's Best by Pitchfork, Esquire, NPR, and more. His latest work and second solo record "The Loves of Your Life" is set to be released on April 10, 2020. It was written and produced by Hamilton in his home studio and is a collection of stories about real people he's met over his years living in New York City.
2020 release. Streamed over 1.5 billion times, and triumphant on stage everywhere from Governors Ball to Austin City Limits, Two Feet upholds a powerful connection to the crowd on his full-length debut, Pink. He initially made his mark on the 2016 viral, platinum-certified smash "Go F*** Yourself". Now, Two Feet sells out shows worldwide. Pink illuminates the full scope of his signature sound, hinting at more to come.
Following 2015’s In Colour and global touring with The xx, Idontknow is Jamie’s return to the club. It lived through late 2019 - everywhere from Jamie’s own low-key parties In London and LA to OIL Club in Shenzhen, Caribou’s BBC Essential Mix to Ben UFO on The Lot. Now in uncertain times, it remains a release of energy - to move to, let loose to and to look forward to parties again.
"I don't play country this stuff is dirt emo it's like crying in a barn or anguishing in your room with a banjo." Ruston Kelly's Dirt Emo vol. 1, the new collection of dirt-soaked covers, was hand-picked by Kelly from some of his revered predecessors. The project includes acclaimed renditions of Taylor Swift's "All Too Well" and the Carter Family's "Weeping Willow," showing the full spectrum of material comprised in this previously uncharted genre, solidifying Ruston as the Father of Dirt Emo.
Between The Buried And Me is the self-titled first studio album by the GRAMMY-nominated progressive metal five-piece. Formed in 2000, the band originally released this album with Lifeforce Records in 2002 and soon after gained the attention of iconic Chicago-based record label Victory Records. Victory signed the band and re-released the record as an enhanced CD in 2004. Described as “one of the fiercest albums in the hardcore community” by AllMusic, this formative album set the band up to be a key player in the evolving hardcore scene. While the album was praised for its brave blend of mathcore, grindcore and death metal elements into their already unique sound, the lyrics also set them apart from their peers. The band addressed their thoughts on controversial topics ranging from politics to organized religion – issues not often addressed in this music scene at this time. This pressing has been newly remixed and remastered to commemorate the band’s 20th anniversary.
2020 release. In the life of any interesting artist, there is the perpetual war between the simplicity of public perception and the complexities of reality. Consider Hanni El Khatib, a definitive purveyor of visceral, blues-wracked, punk-spiked, soul-warped, knife fight rock n' roll over the last decade. You may be familiar with him through any one of his four acclaimed solo albums on Innovative Leisure, his work with Dan Auerbach of the Black Keys, or as one of the rare polymaths able to artfully blend serrated guitars and hardcore rap on collaborations with GZA and Freddie Gibbs. And while these are all real things that could accurately yield a sketch of the multi-dimensional Los Angeles-based artist, they amount to little more than a black and white pencil sketch. More compelling is the Hanni El Khatib of terrestrial existence, who is less susceptible to being pigeonholed by shrewd branding or capsule biography. There is the Hanni El Khatib who existed before he was a professional musician. This was the rap and punk-revering San Francisco skate rat, who grew up digging in the crates for samples to flip on his bedroom MPC - who would eventually become the creative director for the venerable streetwear label HUF. There is the second chapter in which El Khatib moved to LA to pursue music full-time and almost immediately found himself embraced by KCRW and on tour with Florence and the Machine. Music supervisors synced his music in Audi commercials that played at the Super Bowl. Over the last several years, El Khatib had become close friends with Leon Michels, best known as the mastermind of the soul controllers, the El Michels Affair, but who has also quietly racked up producer credits for the likes of pop juggernauts like Lana Del Rey, Travis Scott, A$AP Rocky, and Eminem - as well as working in sessions with Grammy-winning super-producer Mark Ronson.
Set My Heart On Fire Immediately is the fifth studio album from Perfume Genius that will be released May 15th on Matador Records. It sees artist and musician Mike Hadreas re-teaming with GRAMMY-nominated producer Blake Mills and features contributions from musicians Jim Keltner, Pino Palladino and Matt Chamberlin. It was recorded in Los Angeles, where Perfume Genius settled in 2017 with longtime partner and musical collaborator Alan Wyffels. 'I wanted to feel more open, more free and spiritually wild,' says Hadreas, 'and I'm in a place now where those feelings are very close-- but it can border on being unhinged. I wrote these songs as a way to be more patient, more considered -- to pull at all these chaotic threads hovering around me and weave them in to something warm, thoughtful and comforting.'
In a career built on reflective, deeply personal songwriting, Nahko's extraordinary new album, 'Take Your Power Back' (May 15, 2020), stands as far and away his most profound, revelatory, and fully realized collection yet. Recorded in Los Angeles and Executive Produced by cut & dry, the record grapples with grief, trauma, and reconciliation, learning to face heartache head on and embrace the peace and serenity that comes with understanding and acceptance. As heavy as all that may sound, 'Take Your Power Back' is as uplifting and infectious as anything Nahko has ever released, blending socially conscious folk and rock with soulful, alt-R & B, genre-bending production. It's an album of growth, of courage, of resilience. It's a testament to the beauty and evolution that can come from fully inhabiting our pain, and it's proof positive that our true power- spiritual, physical, and emotional-inevitably comes from within.
Vinyl LP pressing. 2020 album from British gothic metal pioneers Paradise Lost. Obsidian, the group's 16th studio album, was recorded with producer Jaime Gomez Arellano, eschews it's immediate predecessors' gruesome, myopic approach in favor of a richer and more dynamic deluge of black shades. From the deceptive elegance and dual atmospheres of opener "Darker Thoughts" through to the crushing, baroque doom of war-torn closer "Ravenghast", Obsidian reveals a band in masterful control of a broad array of vital ideas.
Travis Denning will release his debut six-track EP on May 15th. BEER'S BETTER COLD showcases his signature sound, as husky vocals and infectious charm resonate on every song. Opening with melody-driven `Where That Beer's Been', the momentum grows with Top 15 single `After A Few', the "wickedly fun good-riddance romp" (People) `ABBY' and the "steamy, simmering, sexy" (Music Row) `Tank Of Gas And A Radio Song'. The EP digs into Denning's roots and young love. CD in mini-jacket packaging.
Home is a slippery concept for Jonah Mutono. The 25-year-old London-born musician moved to Philadelphia before returning to their native Uganda 9 years later after struggling to find a sense of belonging in the States. Blending R&B, pop and avant-garde, GERG is a rebirth of Jonah's music, bringing his experiences of self-discovery to light- the good, the bad, the beautiful, the challenging, the sacred & the profane-in songs as revealing as they are captivating.
DEVANGELIC are back with their third full length album, ERSETU (Akkadian for "Mesopotamian Underworld / Realm of the Dead"). Concept based on the Annunaki myth, Those Who from Heaven to Earth Came - the theory of creation through alien DNA, human slavery and the legend of the great serpent (the Knower) as the emblem of Enki and of two of his sons. A journey through the ancient land of Mesopotamia all combined with the darkest elements of the Sumerian's religion and deities.
WILL THIS MAKE ME GOOD is a question Nick Hakim has asked himself since he was young and struggling in school; a reflection of what's happening in his head as he sorts through his life and the tumult around the globe. WILL THIS MAKE ME GOOD articulates a sense of confusion alongside a desire for hope and clarity. The album was produced by his longtime collaborator Andrew Sarlo (Big Thief, Bon Iver), who also produced Hakim's breakthrough debut "Green Twins". Double LP in gatefold jacket.
Bicep return with new 12" Atlas, their first new material since their Rain EP (2018). Recorded in their new studio space, "Atlas" is 6 minutes of unmistakable Bicep. With synth lines that ebb and flow across broken percussion and ethereal vocal snatches, the track was conceived as they toured their immense live-show across the globe. Bicep return to the US this May 2020 with dates in LA at Mayan Theater (May 29th) and in NY at Knockdown Center (May 30th).
New York at Night is the 13th studio album from veteran rock 'n' roll troubadour Willie Nile, and the strongest manifestation to date of his deep affinity for the city. The album's 12 new originals exemplify the artist's trademark mix of romance, idealism, humor, emotional urgency and a true believer's passionate embrace of all things rock 'n' roll. New Yorker Magazine has described Willie as "One of the most brilliant singer-songwriters of the past 30 years", and Uncut Magazine dubbed him the unofficial poet laureate of New York City. Nile's abiding passion for his town animates such tunes as "New York Is Rockin'" and the album's title track. "New York City has always inspired me," states Willie. "I've lived in Greenwich Village for many years now, and I still love being there. The energy, the grit, and the mystery of it all fills my heart with wonder. Most of these songs were written in New York or were inspired by it in one way or another." Nile recorded New York at Night just across the river, at Weehawken, N.J.'s Hobo Sound, co-producing with longtime collaborator Stewart Lerman (Elvis Costello, Neko Case, Patti Smith) and backed by his longtime live band - along with renowned guitarist/multi-instrumentalist Steuart Smith (Eagles, Rosanne Cash, Rodney Crowell), pianist Brian Mitchell (Bob Dylan, Levon Helm, B.B. King), and an assortment of backing vocalists including singer-songwriters Frankie Lee and James Maddock, and veteran singers Tawatha Agee and Vaneese Thomas.
Double blue-colored vinyl LP pressing. Come From Away tells the remarkable true story of 7,000 stranded passengers and the small town in Newfoundland that welcomed them. Cultures clashed and nerves ran high, but uneasiness turned into trust, music soared into the night, and gratitude grew into enduring friendships. A Best Musical winner all across North America and London, the smash hit musical has won the Tony Award for Best Direction of a Musical (Christopher Ashley), 4 Olivier Awards (London) including Best New Musical, 5 Outer Critics Circle Awards (NYC) including Outstanding New Broadway Musical, 3 Drama Desk Awards (NYC) including Outstanding Musical, 4 Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Awards (North American Tour) including Best Production, 4 Helen Hayes Awards (D.C.) including Outstanding Production of a Musical, 4 Gypsy Rose Lee Awards (Seattle) including Excellence in Production of a Musical, 6 San Diego Critics Circle Awards including Outstanding New Musical, 3 Toronto Theatre Critics Awards including Best New Musical, 3 Dora Awards (Toronto) including Outstanding New Musical/Opera and Outstanding Production, and the 2017 Jon Kaplan Audience Choice Award (Toronto).
Either Light is the new album from Boston band Vundabar. It marks their first album since 2018's Smell Smoke which received wide critical acclaim from the likes of NPR, Pitchfork, FADER, Stereogum, and many more. Either Light was recorded in 2019 with producer Patrick Hyland (Mitski's Be The Cowboy, Puberty 2, Bury Me at Makeout Creek) across sessions in Philadelphia and New York City. The album sees guitarist/vocalist Brandon Hagen and drummer Drew McDonald exploring new themes and sounds throughout the collection of songs. Hagen says about the album "We delved into new sonic territory on this record as we employed the use of electronic drum sounds, guest vocals from Emily Massey (Slow Pulp), samples, loops, vibraphone, synths on synths, sub bass and extensive layering for certain songs." Themes of light and water are recurrent throughout the record. In most every situation that gave rise to the songs on the album, Hagen found myself noticing the intensity of light and how it framed the formation of memory and feeling as well as it's ability to frame and establish or skew perception. Vundabar will be touring Either Light extensively across the world in 2020 behind their much talked about live show.
2020 release. On the heels of their Grammy-nominated, IBMA Album of the Year winner Rivers and Roads, Special Consensus celebrates their 45th anniversary with the release of Chicago Barn Dance. The project is a love note of sorts to Chicago, hometown of the band's founder and banjo player Greg Cahill. Chicago Barn Dance not only establishes Special Consensus as one of Chicago's most prized music treasures but also draws the connection between the Chicago and the evolution of early country and bluegrass music. And 45 years into their journey, Special Consensus continues to epitomize nexus between the Windy City and bluegrass music.
Mozzy's upcoming album Beyond Bulletproof is slated for a May 1, 2020 release date. The theme of the project is one that will hit different for many. An advocate for showing love to those that some in the community may deem unworthy, Mozzy's album speaks to his love for individuals regardless of mistakes, code, flaws and offers understanding and second chances as he himself has battled the same demons. The album follows his 2018 project Gangland Landlord which peaked at #57 on the Billboard 200 chart becoming his highest charting album to date. "I Ain't Perfect" is the first single off of the upcoming album which boasts noteworthy features including G Herbo, Eric Bellinger, Polo G, Blxst, Lil Poppa, King Von and more. The physical version comes with a DVD that has 6 episodes of Mozzy speaking to a therapist, as well as a mini-docutmentary
Chaotic Good is Warren’s fifth full-length album and first for Wax Nine/Carpark Records. It represents a moment of rupture in the singer-songwriter’s career as she transitions away from the quiet, folk-adjacent work that defined her early solo albums with a bold statement piece that demonstrates the breadth of her ambition. Here, Warren flits between crushing admissions set to spare piano solos and muscular declarations of independence that have more in common with grunge acts of bygone years than anything we’ve heard from Warren in the past. “The last few years I’ve had an urge to change my name, or create some alter-ego,” she says. “But I’ve come to realize that ‘Johanna’ is already just a character. We think we know who we are based on what’s already happened, but we’re allowed to make new choices.” The oceanic, soothing single “Bed of Nails” illustrates that realization perfectly when Warren sings: “I tried a little bit too hard to be myself/It turned me into something else.”
Regresa was recorded in its entirety in Raquel and Luis Alfredo's home studio in Puerto Rico, and is an emotional roller coaster in which they face and ponder the issues affecting them and Puerto Rican society at large: the frustration at the lack of opportunities for locals while tax breaks lure rich investors, self-doubt and anxiety, even the rise of religious fanaticism. Full of angst and an underlying sense of loss, Regresa -- which means 'return' or 'to come back' -- is a bittersweet, introspective, eye-opening journey.
Industrial icon Claus Larsen presents the next chapter in his long-running covers project!
As with the other volumes in this series, Larsen dramatically reworks the songs of his musical influences including Björk, Nine Inch Nails, Depeche Mode, Killing Joke, and more!Avialble on both CD and limited edition vinyl (only 200 copies made)!
The newest self-titled effort by Power Metal heroes Firewind marks the beginning of a new era: Herbie Langhans (known from Avantasia) is the new voice, and after the departure of keyboardist Bob Katsionis, the band continues as a four-piece, but without losing any of it's trademarks: powerful virtuoso guitar playing, driving rhythm work and first-class vocals performance! It's official: Firewind has once again brought their full potential, making "Firewind" a more than worthy successor of their 2017 concept work "Immortals". Each time Firewind released an album over the last 20 years, it wasn't just the brilliancy of exceptional guitarist Gus G (Ozzy Osbourne, Arch Enemy, Dream Evil) that fans were in awe of, but also the skills of every one of the band's vocalists. In that respect nothing has changed in their newest self-titled album, quite the contrary: with his charismatic voice new member Herbie Langhans (Avantasia, Radiant, Seventh Avenue, amongst others) refines each and every last one of the ten new songs and infuses them with an expressive force that is remarkable. Gus G and Herbie Langhans got to know each other back in the autumn of 2019, when the Firewind leader was looking for a suitable replacement for Henning Basse after the tour with Queensrÿche. Just a few weeks later the recordings for "Firewind" were a done deal, ready for Swedish sound engineer Tobias Lindell (Europe, Avatar, H.E.A.T.) to mix them in 'Lindell Audio Studios'. The result is impressive indeed. "Firewind" boasts 11 prime examples of Melodic Metal songs. The skill, craftsmanship and power bleeds through every note, a passion you can almost taste, with hymnal melodies as a particularly outstanding feature.
Two of the West Coast's biggest smokers are back with another collaborative project; Berner & B-Real (Cypress Hill) connect again for Los Meros. The project sees them collaborate with many a star-studded line-up from Rick Ross, Ty Dolla $ign, Dave East, Everlast, Paul Wall, Baby Bash, and more
2020 release from the AOR supergroup. Champlin Williams Friestedt consists of renowned Toto singer Joseph Williams, composer of film and drama scores and can also be heard in Disney's animated feature film The Lion King as the singing voice of adult Simba. Teaming up with none other than Bill Champlin formerly of the legendary band Chicago and critically acclaimed guitarist, producer and recording artist Peter Friestedt, the album II also includes contributions from vocalist, Michael McDonald, drummer John JR Robinson (Michael Jackson, Quincy Jones), Randy Goodrum (Toto, Chicago), Tamara Champlin and Polar price 2020 winner Diane Warren among many others.
Moses Sumney evades definition as an act of duty: technicolor videos and monochrome clothes; Art Rock and Black Classical; blowing into Fashion Week from a small town in North Carolina; seemingly infinite collaborators, but only one staggering voice. A young life spent betwixt Southern California and Accra, Ghana - not so much rootless as an epyphite, an air plant. The scale is cinematic but the moves are precise deeds of art and stewardship. Sumney's new, generous album, græ, is an assertion that the undefinable still exists and dwelling in it is an act of resistance. To try to pin Sumney down on a sound - and really, on any matter - is to end up with a hand full of fog, but his genius is never allowing the set to sound like a hodgepodge. His forthcoming double album expands upon the sonic universe built in Sumney's critically-acclaimed debut LP Aromanticism and subsequent EP Black In Deep Red, 2014. The songs on græ may be divergent, like the visceral, Smashing Pumpkins drama of "Virile" and the intoxicated, outro jazz of "Gagarin." There's the kinky, ambiguous bop of "Cut Me" countered with the sweeping, amphitheater-ready "Bless Me." But there's that voice, always unknowable and penetrating, threading these pieces together: a heavenly rasp, a whale call, Miles' horn, a soulful snarl. It all works to create a paradox, keeping art and artist somewhere between any one sure thing - but surely something that demands your attention affixed and your breath bated. All of this is græ. There's probably a biblical analogy to be made about a person who just happens to be named Moses, who flees the binary, splits a massive body into two pieces, and leads us through the in-between - holy and wholly rebellious. By breaking up græ into two multifaceted, dynamic pieces, Sumney is quite literally creating a "grey" in-between space for listeners to absorb and consider the art. Not strictly singles, not strictly albums, never altogether songs or spoken word segments on their own. It's neither here nor there. Neither/Nor, if you will.