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November sees the release of MERRIE LAND, the second album from The Good, The Bad & The Queen, a band comprising of Damon Albarn, Paul Simonon, Tony Allen and Simon Tong.
The Good, The Bad & The Queen began life as the acclaimed 2007 album of the same name, a heartfelt tribute to London described by The Observer in a 5 star review as –“One of the most surprising and magical records for which Damon Albarn has ever been responsible”. The record traced a journey from the English music hall tradition to West Africa and Afrobeat, zigzagging through the West Indies and its reggae and dub, back to England and London's punk scene, all the while taking in a strand of British beat music from the '50s right through to Britpop. The result was a record specific to a place and mood but with a background that was geographically wide-ranging.
Now the four musical storytellers are back with a new studio album titled Merrie Land. Produced by Tony Visconti and The Good, The Bad & The Queen was completed in London and Wales this year, during the current ongoing period in which the UK is preparing to leave the European Union, Merrie Land is a questioning good-bye letter, a series of observations and reflections on Britishness in 2018. Even though it has been over 10 years since the band last released a record, the timing could not be more apt – there could not be a more perfect band to untangle the optimism, disorientation and confusion in the atmosphere today. With Merrie Land, the band taps into a creative symbiosis of past and future, drawing inspiration from their shared glittering musical histories and wrapping the hybrid results in a brilliantly postmodern yet thoroughly British package.
The album sees the band’s focus move beyond London with a beautiful and hopeful paean to the Britain of today - an inclusive Britain - and the possibilities of the future. In the band’s own words, Merrie Land is a ten song lament of Anglo-Saxosentialism marking the reluctant end of a relationship, and about picking up the pieces and seeing what can be salvaged. The band set a beautifully muted palette and lustrous finish to bring out a mood that is bruised yet unapologetically defiant and optimistic, and carries the underlying message: we will survive. In times of metaphysical trauma, the people need to forge ahead and wear armour. Here it is, set to the mood music of a nation about to be broken yet undefeated.
Formed in Chicago, IL in 1988, The Smashing Pumpkins released their heralded debut album Gish in 1991 and found mainstream success with 1993’s 4x multi-platinum Siamese Dream and 1995’s 10x multi-platinum Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness. Following the release of Adore, Machina/The Machines of God, and Machina II/The Friends & Enemies of Modern Music, the group’s original lineup disbanded in 2000. Singer/guitarist Billy Corgan reformed the group in 2005, enlisting various collaborators for Zeitgeist, Teargarden by Kaleidyscope, Oceania, and Monuments to an Elegy. In June of 2018, The Smashing Pumpkins released their new single “Solara” ahead of their monumental Shiny And Oh So Bright Tour. The track was the first song in over 18 years to feature founding members Billy Corgan, James Iha, and Jimmy Chamberlin, alongside longtime guitarist Jeff Schroeder and offered the first glimpse of music from the newly reformed lineup. In September of 2018, the band formally announced their forthcoming 10th studio album SHINY AND OH SO BRIGHT, VOL. 1 / LP: NO PAST. NO FUTURE. NO SUN. and shared its second single “Silvery Sometimes (Ghosts)”. Recorded at Shangri La Studios with legendary producer Rick Rubin, LP is due for release on November 16th, 2018 via Martha’s Music under license to Napalm Records. With over 30 million albums sold to date, the GRAMMY®, MTV VMA, and American Music Award winning band remains one of the most influential bands in history.
For his new album Upside Down Flowers, out November 16, 2018 via Fantasy Records, Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness teamed up with noted producer and acclaimed musician Butch Walker (Pink, Weezer, Panic! At The Disco). Featuring standout tracks like 'Ohio,' 'Teenage Rockstars' and 'Paper Rain,' the album is a striking collection of wistful and biting tunes that reflect the past and our chaotic present.
Goshen Electric Co. happened both all at once and gradually: an electrifying culmination of Tim Showalter’s nearly two decades- long love affair with Jason Molina’s craft, and just one half-day in the recording studio with the members of Magnolia Electric Co. Better known as Strand of Oaks, Showalter’s turn at the helm of Magnolia Electric Co. (Mike Benner, Jason Evans Groth, Mikey Kapinus, Mark Rice, Peter Schreiner) comes ahead of the Goshen, In. native’s Memorial Electric Co. European tour. The resulting 7-in. shows a sweeping range: “The Gray Tower,” a 2002 single, and “Ring the Bell,” which appeared on both Songs: Ohia’s Didn’t It Rain (2002) and Magnolia Electric Co.’s Trials & Errors (2005). “Ring the Bell,” recorded in one take, roars in with a twinge of psychedelia, thrumming with vibe; Showalter’s wail recalls Molina’s somber, choir-boy croon, but roughened with sandpaper. The prophetic, dystopian darkness of “The Gray Tower” captures the original soaring chorus and delicate melody with the power of a full band. Decades later, the intense, un inching urgency of Molina’s songwriting endures. “There was such an intimate relationship with his music – it felt a lot deeper than just liking a song,” says Showalter. “You live in these songs.”
Denzel Curry's highly-anticipated third album TA13OO will be released in three acts. The first act, Light, will be released July 25th, followed by Gray on July 26th and Dark on July 27th. Each early single represents one of the album's acts, as "Sumo" represents Light, "Clout Cobain" represents Gray, and "Percs" represents Dark, which come together cohesively to form TA13OO. Across the three sections of TA13OO, Denzel explores topics including molestation, the presidential election, fame, hatred, paranoia, revenge, love, the current state of music and personal tales of his own near death experiences. Sonically, the album ranges just as widely as its subject matter, sounds of paranoia, fear of loss, brooding melancholy and mood swings straight from hell all find their way onto TA13OO, making this Denzel's most groundbreaking musical performance to date.
TA13OO is the first longform statement from Denzel since his 2016 album Imperial, which landed him on the XXL Freshman cover and helped set the template for the South Florida sound that has exploded in the last few years. The album bridges the gap between the older generation of hip hop and the budding generation of SoundCloud rappers that he helped birth in sound and style, all while commanding respect from them both with lethal lyricism and deeply personal storytelling.
Julien Baker, Phoebe Bridgers, and Lucy Dacus formed boygenius after booking a tour together, but the trio had subconsciously been in the works for longer than that. Through a series of tours and performances together, and chance encounters that led to friendships – including Bridgers’ and Dacus’ first in-person meeting backstage at a Philadelphia festival, greenroom hangouts that felt instantly comfortable and compatible, a couple of long email chains and even a secret handshake between Baker and Dacus – the lyrically and musically arresting singer-songwriters and kindred spirits got to know each other on their own terms.
Cult Leader is a chaotic band from Salt Lake City, Utah. “A Patient Man” was recorded and engineered by Kurt Ballou at God City Studios (Converge, Nails, High On Fire). From the first hits of opener “I Am Healed” Cult Leader take listeners on a sonic rollercoaster ride. Much of the album follows this blueprint. Songs like “Curse of Satisfaction”, “Craft of Mourning”, and “Share My Pain” are driven by a weave work of unorthodox metallic riffing and fueled by hyper-aggressive percussion. While the tech- nical proficiency is impressive, it’s in their use of dynamics where they truly shine. The album contains four beautifully brooding epics; “To: Achlys”, “A World of Joy”, title track “A Patient Man”, and “The Broken Right Hand of God”. Each one of them carries a maturation and sense of melody that few “extreme” bands have within their arsenal. Proving that aggressive music still has much to offer the world in terms of originality, creativity, and emotion.
Aviary is LA composer Julia Holter's most breathtakingly expansive album yet, full of startling turns and dazzling instrumental arrangements. The follow-up to her critically acclaimed 2015 record, Have You in My Wilderness, it takes as its starting point a line from a short story by Etel Adnan: "I found myself in an aviary full of shrieking birds." It’s a scenario that sounds straight out of a horror movie, but it’s also agood metaphor for life in 2018, with its endless onslaught of political scandals, freakish natural disasters, and voices shouting their desires and resentments into the void.
Original score music from Radiohead’s Thom Yorke, including 5 original songs, soundtracking the forthcoming remake of Dario Argento’s cult classic “Suspiria.” The Luca Guadagnino directed film stars Dakota Johnson & Tilda Swinton.
When the new Halloween movie hits theaters in October 2018, it will have the distinction of being the first film in the series with creator John Carpenter’s direct involvement since 1982’s Halloween III: Season of the Witch. Carpenter serves on the new David Gordon Green-directed installment as an executive producer, a creative consultant, and, thrillingly, as a soundtrack composer, alongside his collaborators from his three recent solo albums, Cody Carpenter and Daniel Davies. The new soundtrack pays homage to the classic Halloween score that Carpenter composed and recorded in 1978, when he forever changed the course of horror cinema and synthesizer music with his low-budget masterpiece. Several new versions of the iconic main theme serve as the pulse of Green’s film, its familiar 5/4 refrain stabbing through the soundtrack like the Shape’s knife. The rest of the soundtrack is just as enthralling, incorporating everything from atmospheric synth whooshes to eerie piano-driven pieces to skittering electronic percussion. While the new score was made with a few more resources than Carpenter’s famously shoestring original, its musical spirit was preserved. “We wanted to honor the original Halloween soundtrack in terms of the sounds we used,” Davies explained. “We used a lot of the Dave Smith OB-6, bowed guitar, Roland Juno, Korg, Roli, Moog, Roland System 1, Roland System 8, different guitar pedals, mellotron, and piano.” Unlike the Lost Themes albums, where the composers wrote the soundtracks for imaginary movies, Halloween saw the Carpenters and Davies collaborating on music set to images for the first time. Though it marked a significant change from their previous creative process, the trio thrived under the constraints and tight deadlines that film scoring work demands. “Being limited by the length of time in scoring the sequence, we focused on the director’s tempo, timing, and vision,” Davies said. “He would tell us what he had in mind, how long the cue should be, what emotion he wanted, and we would take it from there. It’s only the three of us, there is no elaborate system. We wrote, performed, and orchestrated everything.” For John Carpenter, who reunited on the new film with original Halloween star Jamie Lee Curtis, composing the score felt like a homecoming. Not only had he not worked on a Halloween movie in 35 years, he hadn’t composed a soundtrack since his 2001 sci-fi thriller Ghosts of Mars. “It was great,” Carpenter said of the experience. “It was transforming. It was not a movie I directed, so I had a lot of freedom in creating the score and getting into the director's head. I was proud to serve David Gordon Green’s vision.” For Cody Carpenter, John’s son, and Davies, his godson, it was surreal to work on something that means so much to generations of fans, and that they grew up around. “It was an honor for us to be involved, and we are really happy to be a part of something that so many people are anticipating and excited about,” Davies said. “Working together with both the director of the new Halloween and the creator of the original Halloween was really a fantastic experience.”
The second full length album by KG&TLW, released in 2013 and originally limited to 500 copies. A cult western audio book, the album is narrated and tells a story of the American Frontier. Spaghetti western, garage rock. The original pressing was limited to 500 copies on sky blue wax. It has never been repressed or reissued.
New Artwork Re-imagined by Jason Galea
Halloween Orange-Colored Vinyl
On 12” 45rpm for the First Time
Heavyweight Jacket with Inner Sleeve
“I had a dream about Lemmy,” says Matt Pike, explaining the inspiration behind the title of High on Fire’s triumphant eighth album Electric Messiah. If there’s one aspect of High on Fire that warrants comparison to Lemmy’s mighty Motörhead, it’s longevity. 2018 sees the band celebrating 20 years of the most thunderous heavy metal, with brothers-in-arms Pike, bassist Jeff Matz, and drummer Des Kensel having been firmly intact for the last dozen years. Along the way the band has forged a distinct identity of towering riffs, a propulsive rhythm section, shredding solos, and lyrics of Hessian poetry that has drawn accolades from not only the metal community (notably Decibel, Revolver, Metal Hammer, Terrorizer, Kerrang! magazines) but from mainstream music scribes as well. Rolling Stone, Pitchfork, the Chicago Sun-Times, and The Village Voice are among the dozens of publications outside the metal scene to extol the greatness of High on Fire to curious readers.
While recording Unknown Mortal Orchestra’s latest release, Sex & Food, Ruban Nielson, his longtime collaborator Jacob Portrait and his brother Kody Nielson, found themselves in the Vietnamese city of Hanoi playing and recording with local musicians at Phu Sa Studios. The studio, normally used for traditional Vietnamese music, found the band jamming on sessions dubbed IC-01 Hanoi: exploring the outer edges of the band’s influences in Jazz, Fusion and the avant-garde. The musicians, along with Ruban and Kody’s father, a Jazz musician in his own right, helped lay down the unique textures heard throughout Hanoi. At its core Hanoi is a record of exploration, finding its closest antecedent in Miles Davis’ experimental On The Corner – itself a record full of nods toward avant-garde composers and Jazz outsiders alike. Hanoi finds Ruban amplifying and stretching out on lead guitar, with a blown-out and wandering fuzz tone that slinks throughout the sessions. Kody and Jacob match Ruban’s melodic diversions with aplomb, mining their talents to finding as easy a role in the fusion of funk as they do in the more ambient and abstract tangents on Hanoi.
Travel can inspire in surprising ways: Kurt Vile discovered as much making his first record in three years, the eclectic and electrifying Bottle It In, which he recorded at various studios around the country over two very busy years, during sessions that usually punctuated the ends of long tours or family road trips. Every song, whether it’s a concise and catchy pop composition or a sprawling guitar epic, becomes a journey unto itself, taking unexpected detours, circuitous melodic avenues, or open-highway solos. If Vile has become something of a rock guitar god—a mantle he would dismiss out of humility but also out of a desire to keep getting better, to continue absorbing new music, new sounds, new ideas—it’s due to his precise, witty playing style, which turns every riff and rhythm into points on a map and takes the scenic route from one to the next. Using past albums as points of departure, Bottle It In heads off in new directions, pushing at the edges of the map into unexplored territory: Here be monster jams. These songs show an artist who is still evolving and growing: a songwriter who, like his hero John Prine, can make you laugh and break your heart, often in the same line, as well as a vocalist who essentially rewrites those songs whenever he sings them in his wise, laconic jive-talkin’ drawl. He revels in the minutiae of the music—not simply incorporating new instruments but emphasizing how they interact with his guitar and voice, how the glockenspiel evokes cirrocumulus clouds on “Hysteria,” how Kim Gordon’s “acoustic guitar distortion” (her term) engulfs everything at the end of “Mutinies,” how the banjo curls around his guitar lines and backing vocals from Lucius to lend a high-lonesome aura to “Come Again.” These journeys took Vile more than two years to navigate, during which time he toured behind his breakout 2015 album b’lieve I’m goin’ down, recorded a duets album with Australian singer-songwriter-guitarist Courtney Barnett, opened for Neil Young in front of 90,000 people in Quebec, famously became a clue on Jeopardy, hung out with friends, took vacations with his wife and daughters. “I’ve been bouncing around a lot and recording all over. My family would meet me in the middle of America, and we’d go on a road trip somewhere. I would record in between all that stuff.” As Vile prepares for another round of lengthy tours and countless shows, these songs should prove good company, reminders of the love and responsibility he has toward those he leaves at home and those he meets along the way. That makes the sentiments resonate more strongly and lends Bottle It In an emotional weight. “It’s like that moment on the airplane,” Vile says, “when you’re on your way somewhere and you have that burst of panic. When you’re terrified of dying, that’s when you want people to know you love them.” “Impeccably recorded and mixed songs that shuffle bits of folk, new wave, or country in the mix but are always squarely down-the-middle rock.” Mark Richardson, Pitchfork “Vile’s self-awareness is as appealing as his melodies, and he’s stoked a reputation as a bit of a slacker maharishi—at the very least, a look inside Vile’s head might make you think a bit more deeply about what’s going on in your own.” The New Yorker
The musicians and production team behind the great CHARLES BRADLEY present DUNHAM RECORDS newest sensations! Direct from Staten Island, The SHA LA DAS (a play on their surname, Schalda) are a musical family in every sense of the phrase. Don't get confused here, folks. We're talking real-deal, shoot-from-the-hip group harmony of the highest order. The group is comprised of Patriarch, BILL who honed his skill and cultivated his ear for harmonies at an early age, singing on the streets of Brooklyn with other neighborhood kids and his sons WILL, PAUL, and CARMINE, all musicians in their own right (THE EXTRAORDINAIRES, SWIVS, PAUL AND THE TALL TREES.) The genesis of the Sha La Das came to fruition when an old friend, TOMMY BRENNECK (Dunham/Daptone producer and musician), called upon the Schalda boys to sing back-ups on CHARLES BRADLEY S now classic Victim of Love. The second Tommy heard the four Schaldas sing he knew he had to make a record with them. This idea soon developed into a passion whose fruits have been cut into the 12 masterpiece we humbly present here. From the opening atmospheric guitar strum of Open My Eyes' via a walk along the Coney Island boardwalk catching the last glimpse of sunlight at dusk of Carnival to the sublime crescendo of harmonies of the winsome Love in the Wind, each song evokes a deeply personal yet universal yearning that none of us can escape. Quite simply every song yields magic. So sit back, close your eyes and take in the SHA LA DAS' Love in the Wind. Let the full realization of their harmonies wash over the lush instrumentation of MENAHAN STREET BAND, and float into the starlit summer's night.
Mothers attempt to exist in two places at once - both singular and collaborative, sprawling and concise, present and distant. Kristine Leschper, songwriter and founding member of the project, explains that it is in the space between opposites that she finds herself. The multifaceted is, by nature, fragmented - each facet reflecting a slightly different perspective of the whole. On their latest record, Render Another Ugly Method, the band attempts to gain an expanded view of its surroundings through splintered sound, thought, and image.
Melody's Echo Chamber (aka Melody Prochet) has confirmed her second album, Bon Voyage, will be released on June 15th on Fat Possum Records. Made up of seven expansive tracks, Bon Voyage marries Melody's breathless soprano to the wildest sonic excursions, always pinned to an emphatic, clattering groove as she delivers her fables of spiritual search and emotional healing in multiple tongues (French, English and Swedish).
Bon Voyage is a collaborative record between Prochet and Dungen's Reine Fiske and The Amazing's Fredrik Swahn with Melody sculpting and producing the sessions as well as encouraging the players around her to experiment, often with instruments that might be less familiar to them. It also features special guests Gustav Esjtes and Johan Holmegaard (both from Dungen) and Nicholas Allbrook (Pond).