Music Releases 09-14-18
A previously unheard home studio cassette recording of Prince performing at his piano in 1983 will be released as Piano & A Microphone on Sept. 21. The nine-track, 35-minute project from the Prince Estate in coordination with Warner Bros. Records is planned for what would have been the rock icon's 60th birthday.
This rare, intimate glimpse finds Prince working through songs including "17 Days" and "Purple Rain" (which would both be released the following year), a cover of Joni Mitchell's "A Case of You," "Strange Relationship" (issued in 1987 on the Sign O' The Times album) and "International Lover," as well as a rare recording of the pre-Civil War spiritual "Mary Don't You Weep," which will be heard on the end credits of Spike Lee's upcoming film BlacKkKlansman, due out in August.
Thrice created Palms with a free-form and fluid approach to the album’s sonic element. The result is their most expansive work to date, encompassing everything from viscerally charged post-hardcore to piano-driven balladry. To carve out that eclectic sound, Thrice enlisted trusted producer Eric Palmquist for the recording of the percussion and vocal tracks, and self-produced all of the guitar parts on Palms. “When we track our own stuff we tend to be far less neurotic about getting every note perfect,” says singer Dustin Kensrue. “It’s more about getting the right emotion out of the performance, so that it connects on a deeper level.” Kensrue, co-founded Thrice with guitarist Teppei Teranishi, bassist Eddie Breckenridge, and drummer Riley Breckenridge in 1998. Hailing from Orange County, California, the band formed when three of its members were still in high school, making their debut with the kinetic punk/hardcore hybrid of the 2000 album Identity Crisis. Their breakthrough arrived with 2003’s The Artist in the Ambulance—Thrice’s third full-length, whose singles “All That’s Left” and “Stare at the Sun” each landed on the Billboard Alternative Songs chart. Palms is the band’s first release since signing to Epitaph in early 2018, and the album matches its raw passion with a measured intensity, a rare feat for an album so informed by the volatility of the times. “Even though some of these songs are really aggressive-sounding, I wanted to make sure they never felt like finger-pointing, especially at a time when there’s so much talking past each other,” says Kensrue. Within that approach, Thrice reveal their profound commitment to making an enduring impact on the listener.
Tony Bennett and Diana Krall celebrate their shared love of the music of George and Ira Gershwin on their new collaborative album, LOVE IS HERE TO STAY, set for a September 14th release.
LOVE IS HERE TO STAY is a subtle, sophisticated and beautifully rendered love letter to The Gershwins’ music and their status as one of the premiere songwriters of the American popular standard. It is a masterclass in vocal delivery and phrasing and the command that Bennett and Krall display of the material in both their duets and solo tracks makes it appear effortless, belying the honed skill of the vocalists. The duet tracks include “S’Wonderful,” “I’ve Got Rhythm,” “They Can’t Take That Away from Me” and “Fascinating Rhythm,” among them. “Fascinating Rhythm” was Tony Bennett’s first physical recording in 1949, made under his then stage name, Joe Bari, which he revisits as a duet with Krall for this project.
Richard Thompsons new album, 13 Rivers, is the artists first self-produced record in over a decade. 13 Rivers is a very stripped down, bare-bones recording and according to Thompson the album is a reflection of current events that have happened in his life. This has been an intense year for myself and my family, getting older doesnt mean that life gets easier! There are surprises around every bend.
I think this reflects in the immediacy of the stories, and the passion in the songs. Sometimes I am speaking directly about events, at other times songs are an imaginative spin on what life throws at you. The music is just a mirror to life, but we try to polish that mirror as brightly as possible. The album was recorded at Boulevard Recording in Los Angeles, California. 13 Rivers features Richards regular accompanists, Michael Jerome and Taras Prodaniuk, as well as Thompsons guitar tech, Bobby Eichorn, on second guitar.
Each track on the album was recorded in analog, with minimal overdubbing. Boulevard is a really funky-looking studio, says Richard, but it sounds great. It used to be called The Producers Workshop, and was owned by Liberace, whose ghost is reportedly still hanging around. Steely Dan records were done there, and The Wall by Pink Floyd was mixed there. Clay Blair, the engineer, is a Beatles nut, and has every piece of Beatles gear he can lay his hands on - so if things sound a bit like Abbey Road, so be it!
13 Rivers consists of thirteen tracks. It is an album as much about growth as it is about reflection. Says Thompson, I dont know how the creative process works - I suppose it is some kind of bizarre parallel existence to my own life. I often look at a finished song and wonder what the hell is going on inside me. We sequenced the weird stuff at the front of the record, and the tracks to grind your soul into submission.
My Way, Willie Nelson's new studio album, explores his admiration and connection to Frank Sinatra's art and artistry across 11 fresh, intoxicating takes on songs made famous by the Chairman of the Board. Recorded in the tradition of 1978s legendary Stardust and 2016s Grammy Award-winning Summertime: Willie Nelson Sings Gershwin, My Way is a warm and personal nod from one icon to another. Included are Willie's takes on timeless tunes like "Summer Wind," "It Was A Very Good Year," "I'll Be Around," "Fly Me To The Moon," "What Is This Thing Called Love" (cast as a duet with fellow Grammy winner Norah Jones) and, of course, the anthemic "My Way." Add Willie's stalwart backing band plus lush arrangements for full string and horn sections - all produced by Grammy winners Buddy Cannon and Matt Rollings - and you've got an album that's as cool as it gets.
With his new album Songs of Resistance 1948 - 2018, Ribot—one of the world’s most accomplished and acclaimed guitar players—set out to assemble a set of songs that spoke to this political moment with appropriate ambition, passion, and fury. The eleven songs on the record are drawn from the World War II anti-Fascist Italian partisans, the U.S. civil rights movement, and Mexican protest ballads, as well as original compositions, and feature a wide range of guest vocalists, including Tom Waits, Steve Earle, Meshell Ndegeocello, Justin Vivian Bond, Fay Victor, Sam Amidon, and Ohene Cornelius. Over a forty-year career, Ribot has released twenty-five albums under his own name and been a beacon of New York’s downtown/experimental music scene, leading a series of bands including Los Cubanos Postizos and Ceramic Dog. Since his work with Tom Waits on 1985’s Rain Dogs album, though, he is best known to the world as a sideman, playing on countless albums by the likes of Elvis Costello, John Mellencamp, Norah Jones, the Black Keys, and Robert Plant and Alison Krauss’ Grammy-winning collaboration Raising Sand.
Vinyl: $31.98 PRE ORDER
The rarities collection Death Trippin’ At Sunrise: Rarities, B-Sides & Flexi-discs is packed with music originally released on singles, flexis, and various compilations, and includes their Sub Pop single “Drug Machine In Heaven” b/w “Strychnine/Peace, Love And Understanding” and a cover of “After The Gold Rush” from a 1989 Neil Young tribute album. A number of tracks on the rarities compilation are making their first appearance on vinyl.
The Lemon Twigs have announced details of their most ambitious project to date: their second album, Go To School. A conceptual musical conceived by brothers Brian and Michael D’Addario, the 15-track opus was written, recorded, produced and mixed by the pair at their home in Long Island. Go To School tells the heartbreaking coming of age story of Shane, a pure of heart chimpanzee raised as a human boy as he comes to terms with the obstacles of life. Todd Rundgren and their real life mother Susan Hall play Shane’s parents. The album features contributions from Jody Stephens (Big Star), Natalie Mering (Weyes Blood) and their father Ronnie D’Addario. The Lemon Twigs emerged in 2016 with their debut LP Do Hollywood, which was praised by Rolling Stone for “toting hooky songs that stand out for their intricate arrangements and delectable melodies” and NPR Music who mused, “Like listening to music from a time that never was…a baroque rock romp.” The band quickly earned fans in Elton John, Questlove, and Jack Antonoff among many others, the latter of whom said, “Prediction: The Lemon Twigs will usher in a new phase of rock.” This fall, The Lemon Twigs will join Arctic Monkeys on their UK and European tour as well as two nights at the Hollywood Bowl in LA. The band will tour well into 2019.
DREAMS is the realization of a long-time friendship and musical kinship between two iconic Australian artists – Luke Steele (aka Miracle), the enigmatic front man of Empire Of The Sun/The Sleepy Jackson, and Daniel Johns (aka Dr Dreams) who’s best known as the front man of Silverchair. The band is set to release their debut album
“No One Defeats Us” on September 14th via Astralwerks.
Released in 1980, Heartattack and Vine was Waits’ final album on Elektra /Asylum Records and it built on the raw blues approach of Blue Valentine with the incendiary title track, the funky, organ driven “Downtown” and the stomping NOLA blues of “Mr. Siegal”. This album also contains some of Waits most popular ballads, including “Jersey Girl” which was famously a hit for Bruce Springsteen. “On the Nickle” is a moving song about the homeless people who lived on 5th street in downtown LA, and “Ruby’s Arms” is a beautiful song with a lovely Bach-like melody.
‘Heaven’ highlights Dilly Dally’s rough edges in all their ragged glory, drawing every potent ounce of energy from the foursome’s swampy tones, raspy vocals, and volatile rhythm section. While the music is undeniably ferocious, there’s uplift woven into the fabric of every track. The album opens with the dreamy “I Feel Free,” which begins as a floating, untethered soundscape before transforming into a soaring anthem for a world that’s ready to finally turn the page on all the darkness and disillusion the last few years have wrought. The inexorable “Believe” insists on self-confidence, while the driving “Sober Motel” celebrates the lucidity a clear mind, and the lilting “Sorry Ur Mad” makes a case for releasing yourself from the prisons of anger and resentment. ‘Heaven’ carves out its own atheistic religion to get through the day, a faith that validates our pain as real but responds with a beaming light of hope.
Alejandro Escovedo s new album is perhaps his most varied and expansive album to date. It is his first album recorded outside of America, in northern Italy, with co-writer Don Antonio Gramentieri and a band of Italian musicians. It is also Alejandro s first ever concept album drawing the story of two young immigrants to the US, who bond over a mutual love of punk rock as they struggle with the racism and discrimination as immigrants. Special guests on the album include Wayne Kramer (MC5), Joe Ely, and Peter Perrett and John Perry of The Only Ones. The sound ranges from straight ahead rockers like, Sonica USA, to ballads like the classic Joe Ely penned, Silver City, and everywhere in between. To describe this album as, "epic," might be an understatement.
Dear Someone, Happy Something is the debut album by London based sisters Rowan, Robin and Sylvie. The three sisters from Honor Oak Park in South London, with an average age of only 13 and a ½ years old, write songs that reflect a disarmingly frank child’s-eye view of the world. Honey Hahs have been championed by, and played shows with, Goat Girl, Fat White Family, Insecure Men, Shame, Micachu and The Moonlandingz amongst others. Dear Someone, Happy Something was recorded in London with Steve Mackey. Rowan plays guitar and piano, Robin plays bass and Sylvie plays drums, and they all sing and harmonise. Album design by Jonny Lu Studio with images shot by Oliver Hadlee Pearch.
The latest postcard from The Chills epic journey is an album about consolidation, re-grouping, acceptance and mortality, claims the chief Chill. Hopefully a kind of Carole King Tapestry for ageing punks. Wow! Are rock bands allowed to grow old gracefully and assess the world's and their shortcomings in the process? Is it possible to swerve the obvious and make something that's bittersweet in tone but harmonious on the ear? Of course it is. On Snow Bound lost heroes are lamented, relationships are re-evaluated, atonement is sought, mortality is mulled over and fake news is undercut. It's serious stuff, the thoughts of a dysfunctional 50-something wrestling with maturity and discovering that their post-punk DIY beliefs still have a real voice that resonates between the fans of their early years and which can now pass down to the next generation. Casting our minds back, we can recall that The Guardian mused, They sound almost like the musical embodiment of autumn, when confronted with Silver Bullets. Three years on, Snow Bound nestles heartily in its own winter of discontent. And all this with a humalong melodic verve, Phillipps' gift for the tempered dalliance of verse and chorus and those gorgeous euphoric organ fills. Let the soul-searching commence
Cold War Kids is the self-titled compilation album by the American indie rock band from Long Beach, CA. Forming in 2004, and signing with Downtown Records in 2006 where they released 5 stellar albums, Cold War Kids compiles their biggest hits from the Downtown Records years and features 14 tracks including “First”, “Hang Me Up To Dry”, “Miracle Mile” and many more.