Music Releases 10-01-21
Brandi Carlile's new album, In These Silent Days, October 2021 via Low Country Sound/Elektra Records. It's the follow-up to her 2018 album By The Way, I Forgive You, and she recorded it at Nashville's RCA Studio A with producers Dave Cobb and Shooter Jennings. Tim Hanseroth (vocals, bass), Phil Hanseroth (vocals, guitar), Cobb (guitar, percussion), Jennings (piano, organ, synth), Chris Powell (drums, percussion), and Josh Neumann (strings) all appear on the album, and Jess Wolfe and Holly Laessig of Lucius make a guest appearance, adding backing vocals to "You And Me On The Rock."
The Metallica Blacklist celebrates the 30th anniversary and enduring influence of the iconic Black Album, with one of the most ambitious projects ever conceived by the Metallica team: An unprecedented 50+ artists spanning an unbelievably vast range of genres, generations, cultures, continents and more, each contributing a unique interpretation of their favorite Black Album song. All profits from The Metallica Blacklist will be split evenly between the All Within My Hands Foundation and 50+ charities chosen by the artists who play on the album. All music overseen by executive producer Giles Martin.
The seven LPs will be housed in die-cut jackets with a booklet in a library-style slipcase. Comes with an MP3 download card.
Celebrating 10 years since they first recorded together, Tony Bennett & Lady Gaga returned to the studio for another collaboration featuring the very best of the Cole Porter Songbook. Continuing the musical legacy that began with “Lady Is A Tramp,” followed by the GRAMMY winning album, Cheek To Cheek, this new recording captures the evolution of the singular creative and personal relationship of these two world famous artists. Tony, who turns 95 on August 3, 2021, has spent over 7 decades dedicated to performing the Great American Songbook and Lady Gaga who, with Tony by her side, renewed her love of the popular standard and redefined herself in the process. The album features duets as well as solo performances by both artists accompanied by Tony Bennett’s quartet, The Brian Newman Quintet, along with big band and orchestral arrangements by Marion Evans and Jorge Callandrelli.
Rock icon and multi-instrumentalist Roger Taylor introduces his new solo album Outsider. With much of Outsider recorded during lockdown, this new album finds Taylor in a reflective mood, conveying a palpable sense of isolation, concerns over the passing of time, and tellingly dedicated "to all the outsiders, those who feel left on the sidelines". A highly personal project, Outsider's instrumentation is almost entirely performed by Taylor, with his vocals matching the mood-piece atmosphere.
To say In Heaven is about conquering grief would be oversimplifying everything Tim Showalter has achieved on the eighth studio album from Strand of Oaks. A stunning, hopeful reflection on love, loss, and enlightenment, In Heaven is a triumph in music making, and a preeminent addition to the Strand of Oaks discography.
In late 2018, Showalter’s wife, Sue, lost her mother in a car accident. Soon after, Stan, the cat they both adored, was diagnosed with terminal cancer. Showalter quit drinking so he could take better care of his wife and help rebuild the life they shared. And within months, they decided to pack up and move across the country from Philadelphia to Austin, Texas. It was an irrational decision made at the height of a terrible time, but it’s one that shaped so much of what In Heaven is about.
In Heaven was recorded in October 2020 with Kevin Ratterman at Invisible Creature in Los Angeles. Carl Broemel (My Morning Jacket) is featured on guitar throughout the record, while James Iha (The Smashing Pumpkins) contributed vocals and guitar for “Easter.” Bo Koster (MMJ, Roger Waters) provided keyboards, Cedric LeMoyne (Alanis Morrissette, Remy Zero) bass, Scott Moore violin, and Ratterman monstrous drums. Showalter also played a lot of synth on this record, which he hasn’t done since 2014’s HEAL. With clean sounds, Jeff Lynne-esque acoustics, and sophisticated songwriting, he approached In Heaven in a more poised and pop-leaning way than his past releases.
“I wanted to strive for something greater than what I thought I was capable of.”
The result is something extraordinary, as Showalter has crafted a poignant narrative that transcends his personal experiences and achieves a universality rooted not only in loss but joy, celebration, and newfound strength. The gorgeous opener “Galacticana” finds him telling us “I don’t want to drag you down,” a reassurance that his intentions lie in uplifting. But there’s a duality present throughout In Heaven that is palpable, as felt on “Easter,” an exuberant pop anthem featuring jaunty guitar and ethereal vocals courtesy of Iha, that both celebrates Showalter’s new life and references his efforts to “stop the boat from sinking.” It’s a powerful sentiment echoed in slow burner “Hurry,” which showcases some exceptional shredding by Broemel, and beyond, as Showalter explores mortality and a heightened sense of his own existence, intensified by a world where he no longer uses alcohol to cope.
Pairing smart, imaginative lyrics and striking arrangements, tracks like “Carbon” and its magnificent violin stand out, as does “Sister Saturn” with its funky, sinuous groove, and the sublime “Horses at Night,” which features one of Showalter’s most exquisite melodies to date. There’s also a discernible current running through In Heaven of homage to some notable losses in music—John Prine, Jeff Buckley, and Jimi Hendrix all play a part—for In Heaven is about moving beyond sadness or anger to a state of gratitude that we ever had these people to begin with. And while every song provides some clue to Showalter’s personal heaven, the jubilant “Jimi and Stan” says it all, wherein Hendrix and his beloved cat Stan are hanging out, going to shows, and looking at stars together.
And as our musical odyssey ends in the warm embrace of “Under Heaven,” the weight of everything Showalter has manifested—the beauty, and the sadness, and the immensity of it all—hits with tremendous impact. But any sense of hopelessness or melancholy yields to a different feeling entirely, just as he intended. Perhaps we’re feeling stronger, more prepared for something. Or maybe it’s just a reminder: call your parents, text your friends, hug your pets. Listen to your favorite records. And think about what it means to be alive.
Vinyl: $29.98 Buy
Following nearly two years of global touring in support of their adventurous and acclaimed album, The Wilderness (2016), Explosions In The Sky paused on the future to reflect on the past. Celebrating their 20th year as a band with a pair of remastered reissues of early beloved classics – How Strange, Innocence(2000) and The Rescue (2005) – they embarked on a memorable series of anniversary concerts in 2019. It was around then that Explosions In The Sky was approached to craft the score to a new documentary about a place with which, as native Texans, they were very familiar: Big Bend National Park.
That documentary, Big Bend: The Wild Frontier of Texas, premiered on PBS in the United States as well as on a variety of networks in other countries in early 2021. The hour-long film intimately follows the lives of native animals amid expansive aerial views of the iconic desert landscape that makes up one of the grandest natural wonders in the world. The band set these sights to an inspired, melodic, and meaningful blend of acoustic guitar, slide guitar, strings, piano, bells, and drums that feels as alive and diverse--and vast and lonely--as the place it depicts.
Big Bend (An Original Soundtrack for Public Television) takes that mesmerizing score and recontextualizes it as a stand alone album. Those brief cues have been expanded and transformed into a thoughtful, gorgeous full-length album that recalls some of the band’s most magical and memorable moments from their storied history.
Big Bend: The Wild Frontier of Texas is a film that explores the past and present of the vast, complicated landscape that still holds countless mysteries yet to be uncovered. In Big Bend (An Original Soundtrack for Public Television), Explosions In The Sky pursue a similar approach to their own past and present, and find inspiration in all that has yet to be discovered.
“Fearless was an album full of magic and curiosity, the bliss and devastation of youth. It was the diary of the adventures and explorations of a teenage girl who was learning tiny lessons with every new crack in the facade of the fairytale ending she’d been shown in the movies. I’m thrilled to tell you that my new version of Fearless is done and will be with you soon. It’s called Fearless (Taylor’s Version) and it includes 26 songs.” – Taylor Swift. Includes 6 unreleased tracks. Gold 3 LP.
Flying Lotus follows the release of his sweeping epic Flamagra and his Producer of the Year Grammy nomination for Thundercat's It Is What It Is, with an expansive original soundtrack for Netflix's new anime series, Yasuke.
Flying Lotus is the executive producer & composer of Yasuke, which retells the story of feudal Japan's first African samurai who served with Oda Nobunaga. The series is directed by LeSean Thomas, stars Lakeith Stanfield and features Takeshi Koike as its lead designer.
Flying Lotus' score for Yasuke is an unforgettable titan in his musical canon, drawing enhanced influence from prior instrumental and vocal works alike, while looking towards the future uncompromisingly. The music lies heavily steeped within the legacy of jazz and electronic instrumentation, with select feature appearances by longtime friends and collaborators: Thundercat, Denzel Curry and Niki Randa.
JW Francis burst onto the scene with his critically acclaimed debut ‘We Share a Similar Joy’, with features from DIY and Line of Best Fit to being named Album of The Day on BBC 6 Music. His warm, affable melodies and comforting lyrics earned him fans on both sides of the Atlantic, and now he returns with his sophomore album WANDERKID, a concept album about a wandering anti-hero. WANDERKID hones in on JW’s dreamy soundscapes and explores themes of escapism, whilst still maintaining that sense of comfort and intimacy so beautifully demonstrated in his debut. To celebrate the release, JW is going on a 2,000 mile walking journey across the Eastern United States along the Appalachian Trail. With WANDERKID, JW Francis is further cementing his place as a future stalwart in the alternative New York scene.
The Hans Zimmer produced soundtrack for the 25th installment in the James Bond film franchise, No Time To Die. The soundtrack will include Billie Eilish's electrifying title track No Time To Die, co-written (with brother Finneas O'Connell) and performed by Eilish. Joining Zimmer on scoring the soundtrack is Johnny Marr, who is also the featured guitarist on the album, with additional music by composer and score producer Steve Mazzaro.
Vinyl: $18.98 Buy
Austin indie folk duo make their Grand Jury debut with True Love. Recorded over winter 2020 in LA with Andrew Sarlo (Big Thief, Bon Iver, etc.). This album is about growth and nostalgia. Both band members got married. One had a kid. They’ve found themselves individually away from the band, but settling into their most creatively fertile moment as a duo. Artwork by Bradley Pinkerton (Harry Styles, The Weeknd, etc.).
Weird out with a taste of Fungus Shui! It is a fungal mountain breakdown of rural appalachian psychedelic banjo from the mighty JD Pinkus (Butthole Surfers, Honky, Daddy Longhead, & the Melvins) on Shimmy-Disc label in a beautiful limited edition Spore Splatter Vinyl.
Vinyl: $50.98 Buy
Daptone celebrates 20 years of soulful music with the release of The Daptone Super Soul Revue "LIVE at the Apollo". Performed and recorded over three nights in front of a sold-out crowd at The World Famous Theater in Harlem, NY (December 4th - 6th, 2014), this album brings the electrifying performances that helped put Daptone on the map directly to your living room! Featuring live sets from Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings, Charles Bradley and his Extraordinaires, Naomi Shelton and the Gospel Queens, Antibalas, The Budos Band, Menahan Street Band, Saun & Starr, The Sugarman 3, as well as our em-cee, Binky Griptite. This album is lovingly dedicated to the memory of our dear friends Sharon, Charles, Naomi, and Cliff.
John Prine's 2005 album, Fair & Square, available on LP from Oh Boy Records. Winner of the Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Folk Album.
The Specials, who enjoyed a triumphant 2019 with the release of the critically acclaimed Encore — their first #1 album, coming 40 years after they exploded onto the music scene and launched the 2 Tone movement — make a very timely return with the release of their new album, Protest Songs 1924-2012, through Island Records. The album features 12 singular takes on specially chosen protest songs across an almost 100-year span and shows The Specials are still pissed off. Deluxe CD w/ 2 bonus tracks.
'Exile' is a beautifully curated selection of 11 tracks featuring 2 new original songs, plus fan favorites from both the ‘Conspiracy’ album and hand-picked live tracks from their epic setlists.
The Raven Age are as brilliantly catchy as they are deviously heavy, delicately balancing classic and modern metal influences with an alt.rock twist. Their latest opus traps lightning in a bottle and laces cinematic flavours within concrete heaviness in a way very few have done before – dragging the listener deeper and deeper inside their dark dystopian reality.
The proof, as they say, is always in the pudding. With the success of their latest album 'Conspiracy' reaching over 30 million streams worldwide as well as storming UK arenas opening for Alter Bridge & Shinedown. The Raven Age have risen to every challenge thrown their way and look primed for metal glory.
Asleep At The Wheel is celebrating their 50th Anniversary with the release of Half A Hundred Years. The nineteen tracks feature original band members, current band members and guest artists. The special guest artists are Lyle Lovett, George Strait, Lee Ann Womack, Willie Nelson, and Emmylou Harris. Tracks 1 - 11 are new songs featuring the original band members. Tracks 12 -16 are old songs featuring the current band members and Asleep At The Wheel alumni. Tracks 17 - 19 are songs from the vaults that have never been released and track 14 features the current and the two previous female band members.
With such iconic tracks as “Christmas Time is Here” and “Linus and Lucy,” the Vince Guaraldi Trio’s A Charlie
Brown Christmas is the second–best-selling jazz title in history. Certified 4x Platinum and a perennial best-seller,
the soundtrack reached the Top 10 of the Billboard Charts in 2020 and #2 on the Billboard Vinyl Charts. For this
one-time only 2021 printing, the jacket has been wrapped in a silver foil while the embossed Peanuts characters
and tree have never appeared more striking.
Diana: The Musical is a Broadway show about the life of Princess Diana directed by Tonyr winner Christopher Ashley. Music and Lyrics by two-time Tonyr Award winners David Bryan (Bon Jovi) and Joe DiPietro. Cast album includes all songs from the show, a booklet with full lyrics & liner notes by DiPietro. Co-produced by Bryan and Olivier Award winner Ian Eisendrath, the show's musical director/arranger.
Young Pianist & Composer Demian Dorell has recently completed work on his first solo Piano Project. Reimagining the music on Nick Drake's third album as a new incarnation, the debut album "Nick Drake's Pink Moon, a Journey on Piano'' was recorded at Peter Gabriel's iconic "Real World Studios" Bath (UK). Dorelli's album is not so much a homage to Nick Drake, as a starting point for an exploration of where his melody and rhythmical ideas might take us.
TRNA are the pioneers of celestial blackgaze; an incredible blackened post-rock 3-piece from St. Petersburg, Russia. Istok is the band's debut album for Candlelight. It translates from Russian as the origin, beginning, headspring. The original idea was about "the fountain." For the band, personally, it symbolizes a new beginning and going back to where they started in some sense at the same time. It's the beginning of a new path that we are yet to follow.
EXUM, aka Antone Chavez Exum Jr. was born in Richmond Virginia. He took a little detour on his musical journey, spending years as a professional footballer in the NFL playing for teams such as the San Francisco 49ers and the Minnesota Vikings. While playing sports most of his life, he always held music dear to his heart. In 2020 he flew to Oslo and hooked up with a producer named Samkopf. Together they honed the EXUM sound that mixes alt pop and hip hop, falling somewhere between Toro Y Moi,, Baby Keem, Prince, Twin Shadow and Tyler The Creator. Sage The Room Dark Kept Secret Bad Chick Bad Dude Just Me And The Bottle Portabella Mushroom Brotherhood Of The Travelling Raf Arrest The Dancer Wolves Eat Wolves Muffin Years In Lydian
Midway through his long, earnest and often very, very funny essay on the role playing game Dungeons & Dragons in the September 2006 issue of The Believer, writer Paul La Farge proposes that Dungeons & Dragons is not a game at all but rather a ritual.
La Farge notes the marked difference between game and ritual. Whereas a game seeks to demonstrate how unequal or distinct players/teams are from one another, rituals seek to do the very opposite. “Ritual, on the other hand, is the exact inverse, for it brings about a union,” La Farge writes, himself paraphrasing anthropologist Claude Levi-Strauss. “Or in any case an organic relation between the initially separate groups.”
And so, across the 25-year history of Jagjaguwar, an independent record label curiously named using a Dungeons & Dragons name generator, we find this idea of ritual as a conjoining practice. We see it early on when Jagjaguwar joins forces with a midwestern label called Secretly Canadian for a powerful fusion. We see it in familial relationships and collaboration among Jagjaguwar artists, and the ways those artists’ most treasured collaborators make their ways to the Jagjaguwar game board.
Join The Ritual, the third piece of Jagjaguwar’s 25th Anniversary celebration, looks to pay homage to the labels and artists that, whether they know it or not, invited Jagjaguwar to the table, to this wild, dark magic ritual of music. We’re talking about independent titans like Drag City, Too Pure, K Records and Touch & Go. We’re talking about heroes like R.E.M., Slint, Stereolab and Tracy Chapman. These songs captured the imaginations of our founders Darius Van Arman and Chris Swanson — and ultimately, opened up worlds to them.
Inspired by true events, Everybody's Talking About Jamie is the film adaptation of the hit musical. Jamie New is 16 and doesn't quite fit in - instead of pursuing a "real" career he dreams of becoming a drag queen. Uncertain about his future, Jamie knows one thing for sure: he is going to be a sensation. Supported by his loving mom and his amazing friends, Jamie overcomes prejudice, beats the bullies, and steps out of the darkness, into the spotlight.
2021 release, the debut album from Park Hye Jin. The album-entirely written, produced and performed by the South Korean-born and now LA-based the producer, rapper, singer, and DJ-follows the release of her hugely successful How Can I EP and comes on the heels of a string of collaborations. Includes the single 'Let's Sing Let's Dance', a wistful dance track that places Hye Jin's mantra-like vocals over piano keys and rumbling bass. Elsewhere on the record she continues to expand her sonic palette, drawing on a range of influences that take in electronic, rap/hip-hop and downtempo sensibilities to present the most complete vision yet of her sound.
Wanna hear the soundtrack to Armageddon? This 1995 film starred William Sadler as the Demon Knight, who, along with his new recruit, Jada Pinkett Smith, is charged with fending off The Collector (Billy Zane) and his army of demons from acquiring an ancient relic that is the only thing preventing the complete destruction of the human race. While the flick did meh box office and was panned critically, the soundtrack was easily one of the best of its era and of its kind, an all-star line-up of thrash and heavy metal acts mostly doing otherwise unavailable material (only the track by Pantera appears to have been released prior to the movie). The Pantera, Megadeth, Melvins, and Biohazard entries are particulary good, and the one hip hop tune on the collection, Gravediggaz' '1-800-Murder,' is an archetypal 'horrorcore' rap song. But perhaps the best tune is 'Hey Man Nice Shot' by Filter, an outfit that hadn't released anything prior to this soundtrack. Since this movie came out in 1995, it only came out on LP in Europe at the time; our Real Gone reissue brings it back on clear with green and purple swirl vinyl!
With the dream team of producer John Hughes and director Chris Columbus behind them, and boosted by Macaulay Culkin's star-making turns, the first two Home Alone films rank among the most beloved Christmas movies of the last 30 years if not of all time. And their soundtracks, featuring a pair of scores by the great John Williams and a host of Christmas songs and artists both classic and contemporary, occupy an equally lofty position among holiday-themed movie music collections. But what if you took the best songs from both soundtracks and put them together into one killer Christmas album and then put it out on festively colored vinyl? Well, that's what exactly what we have done here with our release of Home Alone Christmas, a 12-track collection that provides the perfect blend of new and 'auld' along with no shortage of burglar repellent! On the contemporary side you get Steve Van Zandt's tune 'All Alone on Christmas' sung by the legendary Darlene Love, the late, great Tom Petty performing his own 'Christmas All Over Again' with the Heartbreakers, and such artists as Alan Jackson, Southside Johnny and 20 Feet from Stardom standout Lisa Fischer interpreting various Christmas favorites. On the classic side, there's the Velvet Fog, Mel Torme, doing his great take on 'Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.' And overseeing it all is the magisterial John Williams, with three selections highlighted by 'Somewhere in My Memory,' the song he wrote with Leslie Bricusse that has become a Christmas standard. This essential holiday release comes to you in a clear with red and green 'Christmas Party' swirl vinyl edition'Merry Christmas, ya filthy animals!
The second release in Fu Manchu's 30th Anniversary vinyl reissue series, The Action Is Go Deluxe Edition, celebrates the band's 4th album and debut of guitarist Bob Balch and drummer Brant Bjork, which was originally released October, 1997. Produced by White Zombie's J. Yuenger and recorded at the legendary Sound City Studios and also at Grandmaster Studios in Los Angeles, it is considered a classic of the '90s and a pillar for the "stoner rock" movement. Highlights include the lead single "Evil Eye", which was featured on the soundtrack for Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2 alongside live staples "Grendel, Snowman,' 'Hogwash' and 'Saturn III'. This limited edition 1000 unit double LP run is cut at 45 RPM for maximum heaviness and the gatefold package design includes never before seen photos of the band. Also included is a bonus Sparkle vinyl 7' of 'Swami's Last Command' and an alternate version of 'Module Overload' recorded during The Action Is Go album sessions, both of which were previously only available on the European pressing of the original album. Both the LP and 7' feature newly remastered audio for optimum fidelity.
In Pond’s universe nothing stays still for long. Although no one who heard 2019’s “Tasmania” could possibly describe its pulsating psych - pop as straight, Pond wanted to try a more spontaneous way of working for their next record.
Taking a leaf out of krautrock outliers Can’s book, at the start of 2020, Pond embarked on a series of totally off-the-cuff jam sessions from which songs and ideas could be pulled out.
Given the pace at which ideas whizz past your head, it makes for a dizzying listen. Opener Song For Agnes explodes out the speakers like an intergalactic rock opera, running a synapse-tingling gauntlet through bubbling synth pop, 80s hair metal and blissed out saxophone before you know what’s hit you.
It’s an apposite curtain-raiser for an album that can encompass pounding techno (Human Touch), elastic hipped robo-funk (America’s Cup), tripped out motorik (Czech Locomotive) and acres more besides without even topping for breath. Take lead single Pink Lunettes, which opens up thumping like ESG eight hours into a session at Berghain before climbing aboard a gargantuan synthship and disappearing off over the horizon.
Lyrically, too, 9 takes Pond into uncharted territory. Allbrook’s songs here take a more impressionistic tack than before, resulting in both the hilarious one-liners within Human Touch’s gonzoid thrash (sample lyric: “she was jacking a car but she seemed quite nice so I let her use the toilet in my place”) and the social and environmental concerns of blissed out closer Toast, which addressed both last year’s bush fires and the appalling wealth divide in Allbrook’s childhood home in Western Australia.
Above all though, what you get from “9” is a sense of creative abandon and just plain fun. If it was only a fraction as enjoyable to make as it is to listen to then they must have been having a hoot.