Music Releases 08-03-18
Single LP on black vinyl in gatefold sleeve. Includes coupon for full download.
You may not be able to see the gorgeous landscapes behind Baby Grand, Stuart McLamb’s fourth record as The Love Language, but they’re so essential to the picture you’ll feel them in every note. Started in, of all places, a cavernous Virginia hammock factory, fragmentary demos came alive when splashed by sunshine during a move across the country to California, where the album was completed. “It was something just about being in a new city, and a new light,” McLamb says, “and reopening the sessions, and this demo that I thought was a throwaway, suddenly I’m really feeling it….” You can hear the freedom kick in when the backwoods country shuffle of “Castle in the Sky” explodes into a full-on aughts anthem, equal parts outstretched arms and pumped fists.
The band's ninth-studio album, Among the Ghosts, is their first for noted Nashville indie label Thirty Tigers. It was recorded and co-produced with Grammy-winning engineer/producer and Memphis native Matt ross-Spang (Jason Isbell, Margo Price, Drive by Truckers) at the historic Sam Phillips Recording Service/Sun Studio. Recorded primarily as a five-piece, Among the Ghosts eschews the Stax-inspired horns and Jerry Lee Lewis-style boogie piano featured in some of the band's past recordings for a streamlined rock & roll sound that pays homage to their seminal influences as it seeks to push that legacy into the future. For a band who carried the torch of the alt-country movement back in the 90's and helped pave the way for what is now called Americana, Lucero have re-discovered what inspired them in the first place. The sound is more their own and at the same time not exactly like anything they've done before. This is a band settling into their craft. The 10-song disc's title is both a tribute to the spirits which road the streets of their fabled city, as well as the hard road the determinedly independent band set out on 20 years ago.
'It's all rock & roll -- no golf!' is how acclaimed singer/songwriter/violinist Amanda Shires describes her electrifying firth album, To The Sunset. She's borrowed a lyric from the effervescent track 'Break Out the Champagne,' one of ten deftly crafted songs that comprise her powerful new recording. The Texas-born road warrior, new mom, and recently minted MFA in creative writing has mined a range of musical influences to revel an Amanda Shires many didn't know existed. 'Isn't it refreshing?' Shires asks. Indeed. Distorted electric guitars, effects pedals, swirling keys and synths, and rockin' rhythms certainly suit Shire's visceral songcraft and lilting soprano.
British rock and rollers The Temperance Movement have returned with news of a brand new studio album to be released in early 2018, supported by a European headlining tour. Following a whirlwind few years in which they released two Top 20 albums, toured around the world and shared the stage with such rock megastars as The Rolling Stones, The Temperance Movement are finally back, having been hard at work behind the scenes preparing for an even bigger year in 2018. The band's eagerly-anticipated new album, 'A Deeper Cut', features 12 brand new songs which draw on the band's recent experiences and showcase their ever-improving songwriting abilities. Following on from the unprecedented success of the debut album (2013) that stormed the UK Album Charts and the follow up record 'White Bear' which landed at #1 in the UK Rock albums chart. "A Deeper Cut" is without doubt the band's finest output to date. A Britpop swagger and mod, rock n roll vibe throughout, The Temperance Movement might have just written the greatest British album of the last decade.
On Golden Age Houndmouth takes a fearless approach to production by enlisting the unlikely team of Jonathan Rado and Shawn Everett, who employed some fairly unconventional recording techniques in the studio. The end result is enthralling, inventive and even more melodic than anything they've previously released.
Four years after releasing their Merge debut, Frozen Letter, Spider Bags return with an LP that ascends to new levels of aural punch and perspective. The years that elapsed between records were crucial in enabling that progress to take place.
Recorded in Memphis at Bunker Audio by Andrew McCalla (who also engineered 2012’s Shake My Head), Someday Everything Will Be Fine leverages the limitations and glory of the Tascam 388, a vintage recording/mixing device that’s acquired a mythos via its association with legendary records by Dinosaur Jr. and others. Unlike the error-erasing editing software Spider Bags frontman Dan McGee has favored in the past, the Tascam’s charms are more immediate, and it has a visceral resonance all its own.
Someday Everything Will Be Fine, which is about the importance of saying f**k it and dancing to a rock and roll record, is an album only Spider Bags could make.
Finnish metal band Fear Of Domination fuse elements from a variety of different styles, bringing together elements as diverse as Melodeath, Industrial and EDM to create a unique vision of a hyper-energetic, modern Metal-sound. The band sports a dynamic front duo with new female singer Sara Strommer nicely complementing founding vocalist Saku.
AT LONG LAST
A new offering from the incomparable voice of Peabo Bryson… STAND FOR LOVE
Peabo Bryson has established a career as one of the premier male vocalists in contemporary music of the last quarter century. Possessing a beautifully rich, almost operatic voice, this two-time Grammy Award-winner has survived and prospered despite the passage of time and changes in popular musical trends.
With twenty albums to his credit, Peabo Bryson has enjoyed an unprecedented, across-the-board level of international success, Bryson has the distinction of being the first artist in music history to have separate records topping four different charts.
If you want to know what Gabe Gurnsey's debut LP sounds like, the first thing you should do is put aside Factory Floor, the group he co-founded 13 years ago. Gone are the cold, lengthy, stripped back deconstructions of no wave electronica and industrial techno. They have been abandoned in favor of something altogether warmer, torrid and succinct. This new sound - a 21st Century take on muscular electro, Balearic synth pop, EBM, proto-Hacienda militant funk, early Chicago house and minimal, Neptunes-referencing beats - can be experienced in full on Physical.
Chanticleer Trü would like you to know that “RNB ain’t no joke.” As frontman of Portland, OR retrofuturist electro-soul adepts Chanti Darling, Trü drinks deeply from the sacred founts of Disco, Boogie Funk, and the dizzying universe of house music. Teasing out the essential filaments, Trü weaves a sound that nods to the past as it blasts into the future; urgent, irresistible, and absolutely of the moment. Raised on a steady diet of jazz, soul, and his mom’s Boogie Funk collection (he started leading vocal groups at age ten), multi-instrumentalist Trü studied opera, musical theater, and composition. Naturally drawn to the primal energy of the club scene, Trü first made a name for himself as a performer, promoter, and DJ. “I was always drawn to the power of music to make people dance” says Trü. “There’s some innate, ritualistic pre-human thing within us, engrained on our DNA. The metaphysical combination of melodies, rhythms, lyrics and ideas; it’s what our very consciousness is made of. It is creation itself.” To aid him on his pilgrimage, spreading the gospel of RNB, Trü turned to fellow sonic wizards Natasha Kmeto and Damon Boucher. “Natasha and I have lots of conversations about unsung heroes of popular music” explains Trü “RNB musicians that don’t get the shine that they deserve because they are women, or black, or queer. Then a blonde haired blue-eyed dude from someplace trendy literally “borrows” from this genre and all the sudden RNB is cool. No. It’s never not been cool.” Written over three years and recorded in Portland, Oregon at Zip Zap and Eyrst studios, the record features numerous collaborations with producer Boucher and Kmeto. While some of the songs were written in the studio, much of the music was refined during the bands already legendary live shows. No doubt dazzling choreographers and dancers The Step Touches – the only constant in the Chanti Darling lineup apart from Trü – have helped build the legend with their epic performances. Early in the project, Trü put together a band that included Hannah Blilie of The Gossip and Rebecca Cole of and Wild Flag. “It’s amazing to be able to develop ideas in a live setting,” Trü tells us. “A lot of these songs started from live instrumentation and were then translated through digital production.” In fact, the bulk of the music – apart from the drum programming – was tracked live. Aesthetically, Chanti Darling melds 80’s retro-futurist iconography with a late-night summertime vibe; THE RNB is a place of neon lights and palm fronds, washed in the pastels of dusk and dawn. Together, Chanti Darling is undeniable and immersive. This has not gone unnoticed in the Pacific Northwest – and beyond. Voted Portland’s “Best New Band” in a poll held by Willamette Week, the band has already performed at the Pickathon, Treefort, and What The Festival events, played a host of shows with Hercules & Love Affair, been featured in Vice and Dope, and shared the stage with NAO as part of Red Bull Sound Select. “This record is built upon a sort of string theory of RNB sounds” says Trü. “THE RNB is a type of place that exists in another plane. It’s another dimension. A place beyond dreaming that is the totality of your highest vibration. All the rest though… is just mundane.” One of the timeless, primary allures of music has been the ability to lose oneself within it, and with RNB Vol.1 Chanti Darling has crafted a sonic totem, imbued with the power to transport the listener to a place of hip-shaking, sweaty freedom. “I wanted to create a record that people could be absorbed by. Something to hold them and envelop them. The world… the world itself has gotten so dark. That darkness bleeds over into everything that we create. Which can be amazing. But, I felt my call was different. I wanted to create a shift to positivity and light.” Blessed through a life steeped in rhyth...
"Hello, I Love You" became the band's second #1 hit when it topped the Billboard singles chart for two weeks beginning on August 3, 1968. Now, exactly 50 years later, Rhino will release a new 7" version of the single with its b-side "Love Street." For this anniversary release, Rhino will use mono radio mixes of the songs that were given exclusively to radio stations for airplay in 1968. This version of "Hello, I Love You" was first available last year as part of The Singles CD collection and is making its vinyl debut here, while the "Love Street" mix is being released commercially for the first time.
Jim Lauderdale's 31st album, Time Flies, is a return to what he does best: classic country infused with striking notes of Americana and soul. As a two-time Grammy winner and multi-genre dabbler, Lauderdale is able to carve out space for himself in music worlds both familiar and foreign, and after a creative legacy spanning nearly three decades, it's no surprise that his ability to rejuvenate his sound is indomitable. Time Flies was recorded at Blackbird Studios in Nashville, TN, and produced by Jim Lauderdale and Jay Weaver. Special guests include Charles Odie Blackmon, Mando Saenz, and Pete Bernhard (The Devil Makes Three).
What Another Man Spills (1998) represents a milestone in Lambchop’s career, but not in the modern sense of a ‘landmark’ release. Building on foundations that had once sounded almost literally creaky, it expands upon the tentative manoeuvres they’d undertaken with the previous year’s Thriller (1997) and gestures confidently towards its brassy successor, Nixon, which would arrive in 2000 to wild acclaim and previously unimaginable commercial success. Indeed, it sits at a crossroads between the band that Lambchop first emerged as, and the band that they would later become. If it felt at the time like a reasonable, yet slightly confused descendant of what had gone before, without it, one suspects, what followed might never have been possible. In fact, what might first seem an anomaly in their catalogue, a deviation from a previously familiar path, instead becomes a beacon lighting the way forward. It is, one might say, both ugly duckling and beautiful swan all at once. In terms of production, What Another Man Spills represented a huge leap forward, and stylistically it took bold, convincing strides towards uncharted territory too. Its impact wouldn’t be felt for another couple of years, of course, but then it would suddenly look like part of a carefully orchestrated masterplan. Today, too, it continues to stand as a vibrant, satisfying snapshot of a band at a pivotal moment in their lengthy career. Soon Lambchop would almost entirely leave their formative aesthetic behind to embark on a journey that would reach so many people it would ultimately help transform Nashville’s image as culturally moribund and reactionary. But what and who Lambchop were, and what and who they are, never really changes, despite their gradual evolution. They are, and always will be, Lambchop, and they could never have been that without What Another Man Spills.