>Priscilla Ahn – This Is Where We Are CD (SQE Music)
Like many artists before her, Priscilla Ahn went to the desert seeking transformation. After several albums with a team who'd paired her with co-writers not quite her style, Ahn was free. But after those years of pop contortion, she began to doubt her own ability to express her true self in song. Ahn went to the desert as a dare -- to see what songs still lived in her, to prove just what kind of record she could make on her own. She took off from L.A. and holed up in a hotel room outside Palm Springs (a 1920's getaway for Hollywood stars) to apply herself to her craft. The songs came immediately, sometimes fully formed. Within the week Ahn had an album.
>Artgruppe - Objets D'artgruppe CD (Jigsaw)
It's been nearly a decade since we last heard anything from Roy Thirlwal (who led the excellent Windmills and Melodie Group), but here we have this project, and it's just as lovely as anything else in his musical oeuvre. If you know his other bands, then you'll have a good idea of what to expect; if not, then imagine an updated version of East Village or The Orchids.
>Greg Ashley – Another Generation Of Slaves CD/LP+MP3 (Trouble In Mind)
Greg Ashley (lysergic psych band The Mirrors and The Gris Gris) is no stranger to recording. If his group output wasn't enough, Ashley has peppered multiple solo albums in between all of these releases tracing along a path that veers to and fro from heady psychedelic freakouts to sensitive, folky tune-smithing. This is a bold step off that acid-soaked artery, as the nine tunes herein are Ashley's most directly poetic suite of songs both melodically and lyrically.
>Barzin – To Live Alone In That Long Summer CD/LP (Monotreme)
To Live Alone In That Long Summer explores such themes as loneliness, intimacy, and connection between strangers. Modern life provides the backdrop to the narrative that run along these songs. Everywhere you look, the city, with its distractions, is present. Fast cars and cheap thrills make an appearance. Dylan sings on the radio while lovers dream of their great escape. Modern life hurries along taking everyone with it, and the singer/songwriter goes along for the ride, documenting everything along the way.
>Beck – Morning Phase CD/LP (Capitol)
Morning Phase is true to its title: the beginning of yet another amazing chapter in Beck's peerless career and catalogue. Featuring musicians who have backed him on many of his most acclaimed albums, as well as the current live shows widely hailed as the best of his career (Justin Meldal-Johnsen, Joey Waronker, Smokey Hormel, Roger Joseph Manning Jr., and Jason Falkner), Morning Phase harkens back to the stunning harmonies, song craft and staggering emotional impact of Beck's most classic ballads, all the while surging forward with undeniable optimism. "A tenderly stunning song cycle of languid, prairie-dusted psychedelia that recalls reflective 2002 classic, Sea Change." -- Rolling Stone
>Dierks Bentley – Riser CD (Capitol Nashville)
Seventh full-length album for Capitol from the Arizona-born country star follows his 2012 album Home. Features the singles "Bourbon in Kentucky" and "I Hold On."
>Blackstone Rngrs – Descendant CD (Sainte Marie)
Blackstone Rngrs clawed their way through North Texas's urban mantle, finding the blood connections necessary to drink from their fermenting sonic emotions. The sacred marriage blends affection for modern electronic music with an urgent fetish for classic 4AD dreampop and noise. The orgy happens when swirls of orgasmic synthesizers embrace dripping guitars and tantric rhythms and pulses. Healthy doses of noise are always comforted by soft waterbeds of the ambient and dreamy.
>Carmel Snow – You Walk On Air CD (Jigsaw)
Caramel Snow is the work of one fellow named Michael, and his music is reminiscent of Simple Carnival and (early) Orange Cake Mix. These five songs comprise 16 minutes of easy-going pop that sounds like it could be demos from early '70s-era Harry Nilsson; mostly keyboard and drum machine-based, though you'll find some effected-guitars here and there.
>Casper & The Cookies – Dingbats CD/LP (Wild Kindness)
Melodic jerky weirdness reminiscent of the dB's or Game Theory from this Athens, GA group fronted by Jason Nesmith (ex-Of Montreal).
>Celtic Woman - Emerald Musical Gems: Live In Concert CD+DVD (Manhattan Records)
This show was recently recorded in South Bend, IN on the doorstep of the University Of Notre Dame, where it dazzled the family-friendly audience with a one-of-a-kind interactive concert experience that showcased the groups sparkling pure voices, bewitching choreography and fairytale charms along with the talents of a group of world-class musicians, an Aontas Choir, bagpipers and championship Irish dancers. Also available on stand-alone DVD and Blu-ray.
>CEO – Wonderland CD (Modular)
Spanning just eight tracks but a kaleidoscope of emotions, Wonderland is CEO in perfect form -- "a chipper jaunt through a fantastical sonic realm with tinges of darkness at its fringes" – Stereogum. "As demented and blissful as the best parts of once-popular 'freak-folk' movement, with Berglund leading a big top full of whining recorders, sweet-tooth synths and cackling samples." -- Billboard
>Neneh Cherry – Blank Project CD/LP (Smalltown Supersound)
Neneh Cherry’s Blank Project is her first solo album in 16 years, produced by Kieran Hebden aka Four Tet, and featuring a guest appearance by Robyn.
>D. Charles Speer And The Helix – Doubled Exposure CD/LP+MP3 (Thrill Jockey)
D. Charles Speer aka Dave Shuford (Rhyton, No Neck Blues Band) leads his band The Helix through an album of loose and free country rock boogie with blistering psych explorations. "Doubled Exposure follows the rollicking country-rock of Leaving The Commonwealth and ups the ante in every great way possible... Speer And The Helix, though always excellent, have never sounded this muscled, this in control, even as they work so hard to get (us and themselves) lost." – PopMatters
>Cloud Becomes Your Hand – Rocks Or Cakes CD (Northern Spy)
Cloud Becomes Your Hand can go from tribal to medieval to cacophonous in a single piece, as their new album, Rocks Or Cakes, features brilliant melodies, blippy video-game sounds, and Syd Barrett-esque lyrics.
>Creative Adult – Psychic Mess CD/LP+MP3 (Run For Cover)
Creative Adult comes from the diverse musical breeding ground of California's North Bay punk scene. The band's sonic blast careens between the harsh, noisy punk of Scratch Acid and Gang Of Four while carrying the brooding emotion of Joy Division's darkest moments. This debut full-length is a grimy, paranoid acid trip through ‘80s west coast punk. Engineered and produced by Efrim Menuck of Godspeed You! Black Emperor.
>Brian Culbertson – Another Long Night CD (BCM Entertainment)
Culbertson's recent chart-topping releases have primarily been excursions aboard R&B and funk grooves, thus Another Long Night Out marks a return to his roots in contemporary jazz. Among the preeminent musicians joining him in the recording studio to play on the 11-song album are the Rippington's Russ Freeman, Eric Marienthal, Candy Dulfer, Toto's Steve Lukather, Paul Jackson Jr., Fourplay's Chuck Loeb and Nathan East, Jimmy Haslip and Will Kennedy of Yellowjackets fame, Ricky Lawson, Michael Thompson, Lenny Castro, Michael Bland, Patches Stewart and a 38-piece orchestra.
>Davidge – Slo Light CD (The End)
Slo Light is the debut album by Davidge, aka award-winning producer/musician Neil Davidge, renowned previously for his production, co-writing and sonic-sculpting of music for Massive Attack, David Bowie, Snoop Dog, Damon Albarn, Primal Scream, Elizabeth Fraser and Mos Def, plus the Halo 4 game score and soundtrack. An album deeply-schooled in Bristol beats, electronica, soundtracks, orchestral music and more, Slo Light creates a fantasy world in which tension, darkness and beauty find the perfect equilibrium. Vinyl version due March 25.
>Death Vessel – Island Intervals CD/LP+MP3 (Sub Pop)
Island Intervals is Joel Thibodeau's third record as Death Vessel and his second for Sub Pop. An inveterate and intuitive wanderer, Joel traveled to Reykjavík on an invitation from Sigur Rós singer Jónsi and producer Alex Somers, where they spent three months together conjuring an album that's both a song cycle and a window into a mysterious and singular landscape. Pete Donnelly (The Figgs, NRBQ), Samuli Kosminen (Múm), Thorvaldur "Doddi" Thorvaldsson and Jónsi contribute.
>Dinosaur Pile-Up – Nature Nurture CD (So Recordings)
Nature Nurture revels in the rich history of British pop from the '60s and '70s with a distinct element of the '90s. Dinosaur Pile-Up broke out of the fervent Leeds rock scene at the end of last decade, their debut album Growing Pains inviting favorable comparisons to the cream of '90s college rock, and touring with likes of Pixies, Feeder, Cage The Elephant, and Twin Atlantic.
>Dorydrive – Here’s To You CD (Rock Ridge)
Hailing from Milwaukee, Dorydrive is an alt rock act that has honed their chops while the road supporting Alice Cooper, Iron Maiden, Sevendust, Fuel, Candlebox, James Durbin, Adelita's Way, Pop Evil, Hinder, Hollywood Undead, 10 Years, and many others.
>DVA – Nipomo CD/LP (Clandestine)
Operating in their own microcosm, DVA have stood out with an idiosyncratic sonic lexicon "pop for non-existing radios" or "folklore of non-existing nations", as they say. The duo -- it takes two "dva" in Czech, to tango -- Bára Kratochvílová and Jan Kratochvíl, have carved out a niche with their rich musical landscape. Available on CD and on clear vinyl.
>The Family Crest – Beneath The Brine CD/2xLP+MP3 (Tender Loving Empire)
Following on the heels of The Headwinds EP, Beneath The Brine shows that singer Liam McCormick's ambition was well placed. The breadth of arrangements -- from dark, classical romanticism ("Beneath The Brine") to horn-laden sounds akin to the Roaring ‘20s ("Howl") -- are complemented by the incredible range of McCormick's voice.
>Flaco & Max – Legends & Legacies CD (Smithsonian Folkways)
In the world of accordion-driven Tejano conjunto music, Grammy award winners Flaco Jiménez and Max Baca are at once pillars of the past and forgers of the future. Legends & Legacies spotlights these larger-than-life artists, each an inheritor of a musical legacy from his father and grandfather, and each a dynamic force of musical genius. This recording captures the essential sounds of conjunto tradition with Flaco's three-row button accordion and Max's deep-pitched bajo sexto. Electric bass and drum kit round out the ensemble.
>Flagland – Love Hard CD/LP (Father/Daughter)
Flagland is a multi-dimensional band that is impossible to label or define, as there is a variance of musical styles on Love Hard. Equal amounts of ferocity are heard on the bipolar "Comfortable Life" and bleak, hard-hitting "Monster," as on their musical antithesis, the jubilant power-pop "Sugaroube."
>Bob Frank – Bob Frank [Reissue/1972] CD/LP (Light In The Attic)
Originally released in 1972 on Vanguard Records, Bob Frank's self-titled debut album took elements of Dylan, Johnny Cash, and Ian Tyson and filtered it through a pot-smoked haze infused with Frank's long-time friend, Memphis guru Jim Dickinson. Dickinson and Frank shared a mutual admiration that ran so deep that on Dickinson's own 1972 debut album Dixie Fried (released on Atlantic Records) he recorded one of Bob's songs, Wild Bill Jones. Despite the Dickinson/Memphis connection, Bob Frank's only LP for Vanguard has remained a forgotten, hard to find vinyl relic.
>The Fray – Helios CD/LP (Epic)
The Fray’s fourth album was produced by Brendan O’Brien and features the upbeat single "Love Don’t Die."
>Gnaw Their Tongues & Alkerdeel – Dyodyo Asema CD (ConSouling Sounds)
Dyodyo Asema, a 19-minute bastard, was composed by Alkerdeel and Gnaw Their Tongues with the intention of celebrating the fifth anniversary of the ConSouling Sounds label. It’s not a split release, but rather a collaboration, where both parties worked on one gloomy/drone/black/sludge/monolith of a song.
>The Gloaming – The Gloaming CD (Brassland)
The Gloaming is a collaboration between five master musicians: Martin Hayes (violin, fiddle), Thomas Bartlett aka Doveman (piano), Iarla Ó Lionaird (vocals), Dennis Cahill (guitar) and Caoimhín Ó Raghallaigh (hardanger fiddle). Their work is based on traditional Irish forms into which they introduce deep wells of personality and experience; lyrics drawn from the history of Irish literature; and playing that is executed with the authority of virtuosos.
>Mike Gordon – Overstep CD/LP (ATO)
Phish bassist Mike Gordon’s fourth solo studio album is a diverse but tightly knit family of sturdy rock numbers that manages to sound grounded but sophisticated at the same time, and raw but carefully considered.
>The Grouch & Eligh – The Tortoise & The Crow 3xCD (Empire Distribution Corp.)
The Grouch & Eligh’s new triple-disc album consists of one new solo album from The Grouch, one new solo album from Eligh, and one new collaborative G&E album. It features heavyweight guest appearances from Slightly Stoopid, Pretty Lights, Ant of Atmosphere, Zion I, Kreayshawn, Blu & Exile, and others.
>David Grubbs/Andrea Belfi/Stefano Pilia – Dust & Mirrors CD/LP (Blue Chopsticks)
New release from the trio that brought you Onrushing Cloud. Four years of semi-regular shows have created an extroverted rock trio, exploding outwards from steely, contemplative beginnings.
>Hamell On Trial – The Happiest Man In The World CD/LP (New West)
The anti-folk hero returns with a brand new album that finds an inspired partnership with Kimya Dawson (as heard on the track "Together"). The friendship, forged when Hamell supported Kimya and Aesop Rock’s Uncluded tour, adds a new dimension to Hamell’s biting humor and political comedy.
>Heart – Fanatic Live From Caesar’s Colosseum CD+DVD (Frontiers)
Sisters Ann and Nancy Wilson celebrated the release of their 14th studio album Fanatic with a performance at the Caesars Coliseum in Windsor, Ontario. Also available on stand-alone DVD and Blu-ray.
>House Of Lords – Precious Metal CD (Frontiers)
Precious Metal is House Of Lords ninth studio album, and was recorded and produced by the band’s singer and mastermind James Christian. It showcases a stellar sound, with solid and baroque songwriting mixed with unique melodic sensibilities and amazing musical skills.
>John The Conqueror – The Good Life CD/LP (Alive)
Sophomore album from the blues trio. Three years ago, Michael Gardner sold his bass and bought a drum kit. Pierre Moore bought a cheap microphone and plugged it into a practice amp. Like their good old days growing up in Jackson, Mississippi, they were playing the blues
>The Kindred – Life In Lucidity CD (Sumerian)
Debut album from the band formally known as Today I Caught The Plague.
>Lime Cordiale – Falling Up The Stairs CDEP (Church Of Man)
Fronted by brothers Oli and Louis Leimbach, Falling Up The Stairs showcases the band’s uniquely Australian sound, featuring quirky lyrics, pop hooks and big brass licks.
>Lo-Fang – Blue Film CD (4AD)
Matthew Hemerlein, the man behind Lo-Fang, is classically trained in violin, cello, bass, piano and guitar, performing all the instruments on his debut album, Blue Film. The album was written and recorded in a farmhouse in Maryland, hotels and studios in Cambodia, London, Nashville, before being completed in the legendary Capitol Studios in Los Angeles. Highly detailed, the album has roots in electronic, R&B, classical, and folk music, cast through a pop prism. Vinyl version due March 4.
>Gene Ludwig/Pat Martino Trio – Young Guns CD (High Note)
From Pat Martino's private collection, here is a mid-1960s live gig featuring the Hammond B3 artistry of Gene Ludwig and drummer Randy Gelispie. Rarely, if ever, have these artists played with more inner fire, more unbridled virtuosity and pure unadulterated joy as they did here, captured in the full bloom of their musical youth.
>Matt Maddox – Righteous Fury CD (Gracie)
Highly anticipated 2014 debut from the underground hip-hop sensation. Righteous Fury features guest appearances from Reef The Lost Cauze, Tragedy, Khadafi, Adlib and others.
>Brad Mehldau + Mark Guiliana – Mehliana: Taming The Dragon CD (Nonesuch)
Mehliana is the debut album from the new electric duo of Brad Mehldau and Mark Guiliana. The two have been performing for several years, including a brief US tour this fall, with Mehldau playing Fender Rhodes and synthesizers and Guiliana on drums and effects, as they are on the record. Vinyl version due March 18.
>Milagres – Violent Light CD (Kill Rock Stars)
If the last album (Glowing Mouth) from Brooklyn brooders Milagres was an essay on human frailty, composed in a haze of Vicodin from a hospital bed after a climbing accident left lead vocalist Kyle Wilson incapacitated for months, the follow-up is about living life – a brave, bold f##k-you to mortality that seeps sex from its pores and dazzles in its gossamer alt-pop.
>Morrissey – Your Arsenal [Reissue/1992] CD+DVD/LP (Rhino)
New remaster of Morrissey’s classic 1992 album, featuring the US mix of "Tomorrow." The CD version includes a bonus DVD featuring a previously unreleased live concert recorded at the Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View, CA on October 31, 1991 with the future Your Arsenal band, while the vinyl edition is HQ-180gm gatefold (with a rare Kevin Cummins photo of Morrissey and his band taken in Koln, 1991).
>Bob Mould – Workbook 25 2xCD/2xLP (Omnivore)
Bob Mould’s debut solo album from 1991 gets the deluxe reissue treatment, featuring a bonus disc of B-sides and a complete 1989 performance at Chicago’s Cabaret Metro. "A plaintive, sepia-toned, glimmering, acid-scratched, coal-black masterpiece of disgust, dissolution and redemption." -- Scott Devendorf/The National
>Mozes & The First Born – Mozes & The First Born CD/LP (Burger)
Recently released on vinyl, the Dutch band’s top-shelf debut of jangly teenage garage pop perfection is now available on CD.
>Natural Child – Dancin’ With Wolves CD/LP (Burger)
New album from Nashville’s favorite trad-rock troupe. Teasing the record, Spin said of the lead single, "Saturday Night Blues," "a sore-throated tune as a "piano-juiced sing-along for dive bar jukeboxes."
>New Electric Ride – Balloon Age CD/LP+MP3 (Beyond Beyond Is Beyond)
On this tightly wound collection of songs that don't unfold so much as they blossom, New Electric Ride display congenital comfort with outlandishly catchy melodies, high-grade harmonies and hooks by the barrel. Also available on aqua vinyl with download code.
>New Madrid – Sun Swimmer CD/LP+MP3 (New West)
Recorded during a cool, rainy July, under the direction of David Barbe (Deerhunter, Drive-By Truckers), the aural landscapes forged in Sunswimmer become almost palpable. Combining reverb-drenched vocal harmonies, soaring underwater noise and floating, meandering melodies, the sounds don't exit the speakers as much as they condense and hang in the air like the humid Athens summer that birthed them.
>Danni Nicholls – Little Redemption CD (Transmission)
New album from the British singer/songwriter. Being born in England did nothing to stop Danni from soaking up American folk, country, and rock & roll music from her grandmother's record collection. When she inherited her Uncle Heathcliff's guitar at 16, it all came pouring out in the form of her own original material and has been flowing ever since. The results speak for themselves.
>Notwist – Close To The Glass CD/2xLP+MP3 (Sub Pop)
The Notwist's eighth album is a catchy and unpredictable marriage of playing your heart out on an instrument and the magnetic pulse of precise programming.
>patten - ESTOILE NAIANT CD/LP+MP3 (Warp)
London producer patten delivers his debut album for Warp, his second LP and first full-length since 2011's strangely psychedelic trip GLAQJO XAACSSO. This new album seems set to turn avant-garde experimentalism and pop sheen on their heads in ever-stranger permutations. First track "Drift" is a piece of highly textured electronics, silken pop intertwined with crackling rhythms and hits of noisy abstraction.
>Pillar Point – Pillar Point CD/LP+MP3 (Polyvinyl)
On Pillar Point's self-titled debut album, the moody, melancholy electronica is the work of Throw Me The Statue founder Scott Reitherman. Far more intimate than anything he's done previously, Reitherman's personal struggles add lyrical depth to dance floor-ready beats and textures that "[splice] M83 and Washed Out with glorious results." -- The Line Of Best Fit
>River Run North – River Run North CD/2xLP+MP3 (Nettwerk)
L.A.’s Run River North writes brilliant harmonies paired with layered instrumentations and puts on an awe-inspiring live show.
>Runaway Dorothy – The Wait CD (Rock Ridge)
Americana quartet Runaway Dorothy (Brooklyn, NY) counts Roseanne Cash, Adam Duritz, Rob Thomas, and Ryan Adams as fans. The band's 2014 album, The Wait, is both rustic and refined, mining folk, country, and alt-country with the group's captivating storyteller lyrics and beautiful harmonies.
>Schoolboy Q – Oxymoron CD (Interscope)
New album from the rapper featuring guest appearances by Kendrick Lamar, 2 Chainz, Jay Rock, Tyler, The Creator, Suga Free and Kurupt among others. Available in Regular and Deluxe editions. Deluxe adds three bonus tracks. Vinyl version due March 25.
>She Sir – Go Guitars CD/LP (Shelflfe)
She Sir have been evolving to create their own unique brand of "shimmer-pop" -- a term coined by the Austin Chronicle to describe the band's sound.
>Silversun Pickups – The Singles Collection CD/6x7" (Dangerbird)
A career-spanning collection featuring all the Silversun Pickups' singles plus the new song "Cannibal." Available on CD and as a 7" box set. The vinyl box set includes an exclusive track "Devil's Cup," which is a B-side from the 2009 Swoon sessions.
>Skaters – Manhattan CD/LP+MP3 (WB)
"Skaters spew out windswept pop-punk that salutes (and skewers) the foursome's adopted home of New York City. Vocalist Michael Ian Cummings and drummer Noah Rubin grew up together outside Boston, and guitarist Josh Hubbard hails from England, but, as Rubin tells it, the band (which includes bassist/New Yorker Dan Burke) was founded on a mutual love of late '70s NYC punk." – Spin
>The Souljazz Orchestra – Inner Fire CD/LP (Strut)
Inner Fire continues The Souljazz Orchestra's expansive musical journey as the group fuses intricate Eastern influences, Afro beats, Latin styles and spiritual jazz elements into a unique melting pot, creating a fiery soundscape, both far-reaching and highly rhythmic, for the body, the mind and the spirit.
>Stromae – Racine Carrée CD (Republic)
Stromae is a Belgian vocalist, songwriter, and producer whose music combines hip-hop flavors with the cool, polished rhythms of house and other varieties of electronic dance music.
>Amy Stroupe – Tunnel CD (Milkglass)
Amy Stroup lives in Nashville, but she's part of the Other Nashville, a community that's geographically close, but artistically far away from the country Music business. It's a place where songwriters like Stroup are fearlessly demolishing the boundaries between genres, floating freely through the musical universe to create music that blends elements of folk, pop, country and rock into a unique style that encompasses them all, without fitting easily into any existing category.
>St. Vincent – St. Vincent CD/LP (Loma Vista)
St. Vincent was recorded with Actor/Strange Mercy/Love This Giant producer John Congleton and features percussion from Homer Steinweiss (Dap-Kings) and McKenzie Smith (Midlake). "I knew the groove needed to be paramount," Annie Clark says in the press release." I wanted to make a party record you could play at a funeral."
>Sultan Bathery – Sultan Bathery CD/LP (Slovenly)
Italian freakbeat swamis bring you a swirling, exotic blend of smoky, reverb soaked psychedelic garage-pop handcrafted in a fur-lined diamond mine. Euphoric waves of stomping subterranean rock & roll throb through your being, with stinging fuzz lines cut through the pulsating fringe of your bubble fudge mind. A raging, hyper-electric trip previously only available in ten strips and microdots, finally and fully realized on a hallucinatory bud of dark wax.
>Superchunk – Indoor Living [Reissue/1997] CD/LP+MP3 (Merge)
Remastered reissue includes new liner notes by John Plymale and Laura Balance and is expanded with We'd Like to Thank The Homecoming Committee - Live At Duke 1997 via download coupon.
>Nicholas Szczepanik – Not Knowing CD (Desire Path)
A slow, steady throb lulls the listener into a soft molasses; a spark is ignited, becomes a glimmer, before turning into an all-encompassing radiant glow.
>Tacocat – NVM CD/LP (Hardly Art)
NVM, pronounced "Nevermind" (get it?!), feature songs about frustration, alienation, psychedelic quinceañeras, and anthems ("Crimson Wave" and "Pocket Full Of Primrose") for mother natures monthly gift, all set to boppy-poppy sunny and sugary bouts of bouncy rock. Tacocat are the musical version of a Trapper Keeper filled with old issues of Riot Grrrl fanzines and Cheap Trick CDs.
>Temples – Sun Structures CD/LP (Fat Possum)
"Does everyone remember Wolfmother? The Zeppelin worshiping Aussies that released two pretty solid albums and found Guitar Hero fame? They were a band that rejected modern musical ideals (outside of production work) and dedicated themselves to making albums that seemed to have time warped its way from the ‘70s. If you want to get a proper idea of what UK outfit Temples is all about just replace "Zeppelin" with "The Zombies" and you’ll have a pretty good picture of their sound." – PopMatters
>Twin Forks – Twin Forks CD (Dine Alone)
Twin Forks are Chris Carrabba (Dashboard Confessional) Suzie Zeldin (The Narrative), Ben Homola (Bad Books), and Jonathan Clark. Vinyl version due March 18.
>Vanden Plas – Chronicles Of The Immortals CD (Frontiers)
New album from the German progressive metal band.
>Christina Vantzou – No. 2 CD/LP (Kranky)
Developed over a four-year period, No.2 was composed using synthesizers and a variety of unidentified samples that were manipulated beyond recognition. Christina Vantzou then collaborated with Minna Choi of the San Francisco based Magik Magik Orchestra. Vantzou and Choi worked on the notation and arrangements and recorded the compositions with a 15-piece ensemble at Tiny Telephone studios in San Francisco. The chamber layer on No.2 follows a similar pattern as her 1st record with the addition of bassoon, oboe, and an enhanced string section.
>Various Artists [Brandt Brauer Frick] – DJ Kicks CD/2xLP (!K7)
The German Trio’s DJ Kicks mix is an across-the-board selection. The opening stages features the likes of Jan Jelinek, Theo Parrish and African musician William Onyeabor, before things take a more club-friendly turn via French Fries, Cosmin TRG, MMM and Jam City.
>Various Artists – Studio One Rocksteady: Rocksteady, Soul And Early Reggae At Studio One CD/2xLP+MP3 (Soul Jazz)
With excellent sleeve notes by Lloyd Bradley (author of the classic book Bass Culture - When Reggae Was King) this compilation is dedicated to rocksteady at Studio One as well as covering reggae soul and the birth of reggae. Featuring an all-star selection of artists: Ken Boothe, Marcia Griffiths, Jackie Mittoo, The Heptones, John Holt, Alton Ellis, Dennis Brown and more.
>Vertical Scratchers – Daughter Of Everything CD/LP+MP3 (Merge)
Vertical Scratchers is John Schmersal (ex-Brainiac/Enon, live Caribou, and Crooks On Tape) and Christian Beaulieu (ex-Triclops!/Anywhere). Persistent elements you will hear throughout Daughter Of Everything is the percussive nature in which the guitars were played and recorded. Guitar playing is vertical scratching, and in this band, the guitar strums are almost louder than the amps. John explains, "Part of the aesthetic we were establishing when writing Vertical Scratchers songs was to maintain a sense of urgency and raw energy without relying on volume and distortion."
>Joe Lewis Walker – Hornet’s Nest CD (Alligator)
Walker's music is equal parts rock & roll fire and blistering, passionate blues.
>We Were Promised Jetpacks – E Rey (Live In Philadelphia) CD (FatCat)
To kick off a year that will bring a long-awaited new studio album this autumn and multiple US tours including a stop at SXSW, FatCat present the next best thing to seeing WWPJ in concert; E Rey (Live In Philadelphia) is a live album with an accompanying downloadable film that properly captures the spirit, the community, the power, the pure heft of a WWPJ live show.
>David Wilcox – Blaze CD (What Are Records?)
Cleveland-born David Wilcox was inspired to play guitar after hearing a fellow college student playing in a stairwell. His lyrical insight is matched by a smooth baritone voice, virtuosic guitar chops, and creative open tunings, giving him a range and tenderness rare in folk music.
>Wild Beasts – Present Tense CD/LP (Domino)
"Wild Beasts revel in their idiosyncrasies; you can hear it in the dueling vocals and choral layers, the words that shouldn't fit, the tunes that veer off in unexpected directions. What's new here is that they have tempered and honed those flourishes. It's modest in its experiments, never forgoing an accessible ear for the sake of being difficult." – The Guardian
>Johnny Winter – True To The Blues 4xCD (Sony Legacy)
This career-spanning box set captures Johnny's most electrifying performances over four decades of rock & roll and celebrates his recent 70th birthday.
>Yellow Ostrich – Cosmos CD/LP+MP3 (Barsuk)
"Fox doesn’t launch its updated version of Carl Sagan’s Cosmos until March 9, but space nerds can get amped up for Seth MacFarlane and Neil deGrasse Tyson’s passion project with—believe it or not—Yellow Ostrich’s new record. The band’s own Cosmos is inspired by Sagan’s original." – A.V. Club
>Thalia Zedek Band – Six CD/LP+MP3 (Thrill Jockey)
Brand new 29-minute mini-album from Thalia Zedek Band. "A fine example of where Thalia Zedek's present and past meet, combining the broader, more open palette of 2013's Via with the heft of the blues-tinged indie sound that Come pioneered." -- PopMatters
DVD & Blu-ray:
>Celtic Woman - Emerald Musical Gems: Live In Concert DVD/Blu-ray (Manhattan Records)
This show was filmed last year in South Bend, IN on the doorstep of the University Of Notre Dame, where it dazzled the family-friendly audience with a one-of-a-kind interactive concert experience that showcased the groups sparkling pure voices, bewitching choreography and fairytale charms along with the talents of a group of world-class musicians, an Aontas Choir, bagpipers and championship Irish dancers. 90 minutes.
>Chtonic – Ian-Bu DVD (Eagle Rock Entertainment)
Chthonic is a Taiwanese metal band originally formed in 1995, with the existing line-up having been together since 2005. Their music blends metal with traditional Chinese instruments and lyrically they are influenced by Taiwan’s mythology, Taoist folk beliefs and the country’s labyrinthine history. 105 minutes.
>Heart – Fanatic Live From Caesar’s Colosseum DVD/Blu-ray (Frontiers)
Sisters Ann and Nancy Wilson celebrated the release of their 14th studio album Fanatic with a performance at the Caesars Coliseum in Windsor, Ontario. 77 minutes.
>Muscle Shoals – DVD/Blu-ray (Magnolia Home Entertainment)
Located alongside the Tennessee River, Muscle Shoals, Alabama has helped create some of the most important and resonant songs of all time. Overcoming crushing poverty and staggering tragedies, Rick Hall brought black and white together to create music for the generations. He is responsible for creating the "Muscle Shoals sound" and The Swampers, the house band at FAME Studios that eventually left to start its own successful studio known as Muscle Shoals Sound. Gregg Allman and others bear witness to Muscle Shoals' magnetism, mystery and why it remains influential today. 111 minutes.
>Rock Candy Funk Party - Takes New York: Live At The Iridium DVD+2xCD/Blu-ray+2xCD (J&R Adventures)
With its reboot of classic ‘70s/’80s jazz-funk, Rock Candy Funk Party deliver a sound that is as celebratory as the name suggests. The group is powered by a lineup of world-renowned players who came together for the sheer fun of making music and a mutual love of genre-blurring grooves. 100 minutes.
>Ryan Adams – Love Is Hell [Reissue/2004] 3xLP (Mobile Fidelity)
Ryan Adams’ Love Is Hell is repressed as a numbered limited edition triple-LP box set from Mobile Fidelity Silver Label with seven extra tracks from Japanese-only bonus disc.
>Cremator – Clean Air Turbulence LP+MP3 (Bronzerat)
London one-man synth geek Matt Thompson (Zoltan, Guapo) takes you on a sci-fi tune fest ala John Carpenter meets Kraftwerk, sending you on a nine track journey from Earth into an analogue wormhole, onto a planetary ring of sound loops, and then into the next dimension of sonic discovery.
>Dead Moon – Crack In The System [Reissue/2003] LP (Mississippi)
A true classic, Crack In The System is one of Dead Moon's most beloved LPs, and features the mega-hit "It's Okay" along with other classics like "Day After Day," "Cast Will Change," "Unknown Passage," and the best version of "Times They Are Changin'" ever recorded. All hits, no misses on this timeless release.
>Dispatch – Bang Bang [Reissue/2000] LP (Bomber)
Reissued on limited green vinyl. "…A sharp collection of ten songs that is pleasing on all ends of the musical spectrum, from instruments to vocals to songwriting. Rarely does the record fall into a pattern, and instead Dispatch rotate their sound, from Guster-esque mellowness to the quick style of Sublime." -- AllMusic
>Robert Ellis – The Lights From The Chemical Plant 2xLP+MP3 (New West)
Recently released on CD – now available on vinyl. Robert Ellis's second album continues his journey into folk music he began three years ago, with songs that range from the majestic string-adorned title track to noir pop rock and somber confessionals. Ellis recently told Rolling Stone The Lights From The Chemical Plant is "stylistically ambiguous," as he is inspired by a wide variety of artists. "On this record I was trying to channel everything from Paul Simon."
>Peter Gabriel – Scratch My Back And I’ll Scratch Yours 2xLP (Real World)
And I’ll Scratch Yours is the concluding part of a series of song exchanges in which Gabriel and other leading artists reinterpret each other’s songs. Features covers by David Byrne, Bon Iver, Regina Spektor, Stephin Merritt, Joseph Arthur, Randy Newman, Arcade Fire, Elbow, Brian Eno, Feist, Lou Reed, and Paul Simon.
>The Grateful Dead – Birth Of The Dead Volume Two (The Live Sides) 2xLP (Friday Music)
14 super rare Grateful Dead live tracks recorded in San Francisco from a July 1966 performance when they were signed to the Scorpio Records label -- remastered at Friday Music and Capitol Studios. Previously unreleased on vinyl until now, this deluxe HQ-180gm double-LP set not only has the original 14 live performances unearthed by the Dead themselves, but also includes, for the very first time anywhere, several unearthed early photos from the lens of the legendary Herb Greene.
>Keel Her – Keel Her LP+CD (Critical Heights)
Veering sonically from Beat Happening to Ariel Pink, Wavves to Bikini Kill, Real Estate to Guided By Voices and all the way back again, it wasn't long before Keel Her’s bedroom pop reached the ears of home recording supremo R. Stevie Moore. "Keel Her is Rose Keeler-Schäffeler, an alien-obsessed bedroom musician with a prolific workrate to show up every studio-dithering band as heel-dragging slackers. The 18 tracks collected on this debut are a mere sample of the hundreds the Brighton artist has posted online in recent years, a patchwork of lo-fi hits, throwaway doodles and flashes of studio inspiration." – NME
>King Champion Sounds – Different Drummer LP (Sick Room)
What if The Fall had garnished their rockabilly grooves with swing era horns? What if Can played Ghanaian highlife? What if Morricone had scored spaghetti westerns in a Moroccan souk? King Champion Sounds is a Dutch band fronted by Ajay Saggar and G.W.Sok, recombine canonical influences in new contexts.
>Klaus Johann Grobe – Traumhaft b/w Nicht Zu Stoppen 7" (Trouble In Mind)
Swiss duo Klaus Johann Grobe has been mysteriously doling out their hypnotic brand of floor-filling electro-krautrock for a couple of years now.
>Leyland Kirby – EP 12" (Apollo)
This four-track EP from Kirby (The Caretaker, The Stranger, V/VM) flits between moods, from gorgeous, skin-prickling surges of ambience to cryptic rhythms and intricate, jazzy techno.
>Krzysztof Komeda - Dance Of The Vampires OST LP+CD (Series Alphonos/Bronzerat)
The Polish jazz legend's soundtrack for Roman Polanski's 1967 camp horror cult classic is now available on deluxe vinyl.
>Lynyrd Skynyrd – One More From The Road [Reissue/1976] 2xLP (Friday Music)
Skynyrd live at Atlanta's Fox Theater two days after the American Bicentennial. HQ-180gm.
>Oval – VOA LP (EVOA)
Vinyl-only album self-released by Oval and imported from Europe. 500 copies on HQ-180gm vinyl.
>The Presidents Of The United States Of America – Kudos To You! LP (PUSA Corp.)
Released last week on CD – now available on vinyl. Kudos To You! is the seventh full length studio album from Seattle's The Presidents Of The United States Of America. Since 1994, PUSA has been spreading their skewed and joyous brand of pop to audiences the world over.
>Chuck Ragan – Non Typical 7" (Side One Dummy)
The first single of Chuck Ragan's forthcoming new album Till Midnight (due March 25). B-side is an alternate mix of the single.
>Real Estate – Talking Backwards b/w Beneath The Dunes 7" (Domino)
The lead single from the new album Atlas (due March 4) is backed with an exclusive non-album track.
>Simon Pyke – Universal Everything & You LP+MP3 (Warp)
Simon Pyke (aka Freeform) has constructed this epic 20-minute piece from the foundations of the soundtrack he composed for the exhibition Universal Everything & You - Drawing In Motion, currently showing at Media Space, Science Museum, London. HQ-180gm.
>Supersuckers – Get The Hell LP (Acetate)
Recently released on CD – now available on vinyl. The "Greatest Rock & Roll Band in the World" return with their ninth studio album -- a blistering return to their punk rock roots. Featuring 12 new soon-to-be Supersuckers classics, Get The Hell is a sonic assault of big riffs, catchy hooks and raw, balls-to-the-wall rock & roll.
>Tanger Trio & Ensemble Mondaine - Tanger Trio & Ensemble Mondaine LP (Bronzerat)
An original album of resplendent beauty by some of Berlin’s most prized and sought musicians, this piano-led album of cinema noir-esque moods mixed with modern classical and jazz is a rare treat.
>Total Slacker – Slip Away LP (Black Bell)
Brooklyn's lovers of all-things-'90s, Total Slacker tightens the reins a bit on their new album, which is definitely punchier than their jokey/fun debut.
>John Vanderslice - Song For Clay Miller b/w Vitas At Wimbledon 7" Flexi (Native Sound)
Simple, profound pop songs wrapping echo-laden vocals around skeletal percussion with a bare minimum of extra instrumentation.
>Wordyspeak – Let The Rhythm Hit LP (DD172 LLC)
Hailing from Xi’An, China, DJ Wordy is regarded as China’s first Internationally acclaimed DJ, with a style that masterfully blends genres across hip-hop, EDM, funk, soul, and more.
>Adrenaline Mob – Men Of Honor CD (Century Media)
Adrenaline Mob -- featuring Symphony X frontman Russell Allen, guitar virtuoso Mike Orlando (Sonic Stomp), Disturbed bassist John Moyer and new drummer A.J Pero (Twisted Sister) -- release their second full length album. Vinyl version due March 4.
>The Allman Brothers Band – Peaches Picked: Boston Commons 8/17/71 CD (Allman Brothers Band Recording Company)
The fifth album issued by the Allman Brothers Band Recording Company returns to the Duane Allman-led outfit in a moment of triumph. The group's outdoor appearance in Boston occurred six weeks after the release of their breakthrough album, At Fillmore East, and ten weeks before Allman's death.
>The Allman Brothers Band – Play All Night: Live At The Beacon Theater 1992 2xCD (Sony Legacy)
This new double-disc set showcases The Allman Brothers Band’s very first time playing an extended ten-night run at the Beacon.
>Altitudes & Attitude – Altitudes & Attitude CDEP (MRI)
New project from longtime friends/bassists Frank Bello (Anthrax) and David Ellefson (Megadeth).
>Artificial Brain – Labyrinth Constellation CD (Profound Lore)
A cosmic dose of complex brutality, Labyrinth Constellation fits neatly alongside the other denizens of Profound Lore’s twisted death metal contingent: Portal, Mitochondrion, Grave Miasma, Abyssal, and newcomers Auroch and Chthe’ilist.
>Aztec Camera – High Land, Hard Rain [Reissue/1983] CD/LP+MP3 (Domino)
Recently released on vinyl – now available on CD. In his new liner notes for this reissue, David Fricke calls High Land, Hard Rain "ten songs of anxious yearning, romantic urgency, big hurt and hard-won learning, distilled into compact dramas of buckskin-folk jangle and skewed-pop elegance."
>William Basinski – A Red Score In Tile [Reissue/2003] CD (2026)
Composed in 1979, A Red Score In Tile eventually surfaced as a vinyl-only edition in 2003. Made up of piano, the album showcases Basinski's patented tape-loop technique and represents one of his most affecting pieces of music.
>William Basinski – Variations: A Movement In Chrome Primitive [Reissue/2004] 2xCD (2026)
Variations was created using more piano tape loops, which were played randomly against themselves creating feedback loops. By "cloning" small cells of melody then "breeding" them randomly, new sounds were formed. These new sounds move in and out of the original cells, creating a complex crystalline structure, a new life form not unlike a city for example, which the original cells occupy in multitudes, moving in and out of one another in infinite combinations.
>Bayside – Cult CD/LP (Hopeless)
Cult marks Bayside’s first release on Hopeless Records and is their sixth full-length overall.
>Bear Hands – Distraction CD/LP (Cantora)
Distraction is a violently self-assured record that sees the quartet distilling their anxieties and pleasures alike into perfectly twisted pop nuggets. After releasing their debut LP Burning Bush Supper Club, Bear Hands crisscrossed America opening for the legendary GZA, Passion Pit, and AWOLNATION only to return home to Brooklyn and be distracted by the minutia of modern life and shallow urbanity. While avoiding each other for months, the band frittered away their time with help from the internet, serial monogamy, and recreational drugs.
>Bootstraps – Bootstraps  CD (Harvest)
Bootstraps began with a small, simple goal -- to write a few songs for a friend's feature film. Since then, their eponymous record has blossomed into what Liza Richardson, KCRW DJ and music supervisor calls, ''Strong songwriting bathed in an instantly likable, intimate vibe''. Which warrants this re-release to a larger audience. Vinyl version due April 15.
>Jonatha Brooke – My Mother Has 4 Noses CD (Bad Dog Records)
Companion release to Jonatha Brooke’s new musical play, written and performed by Jonatha herself and now playing on Broadway. “Who knew the distinguished New York singer/songwriter was such a good actress, comedian and writer? Her one-woman play with music about her mother’s dementia was poignant, powerful and funny." -- Minneapolis Star Tribune
>Paul Byrom – Thinking Of Home CD (Shanachie)
Recorded in Ireland, Thinking Of Home finds Paul giving a classic tenor’s interpretation of some of the greatest and best loved Irish songs of all time, including “Danny Boy," “The Town I Loved So Well," “Dear Old Dublin" and others.
>Jacques Caramac & The Sweet Generation – Highs & Lows Of CD/LP (Everyday Life)
Jacques Caramac’s sugary soundworld and wry observational rock brings to mind similarly singular British acts from Pulp to British Sea Power and even The Fall. Available on CD and on picture disc vinyl.
>The Caribbean – Moon Sickness CD (Hometapes)
The Caribbean make music that rewards patience and attention -- the kind of work that doesn’t just stand up to repeated listens, but actually requires them. That sentiment applies both to the Caribbean’s quirky, complex musical palette as well as literate, literary narratives that vocalist Michael Kentoff spins.
>Cynic – Kindly Bent To Free Us CD/2xLP (Season Of Mist)
New album from legendary progressive rock innovators.
>Displacer & Nimon – House Of The Dying Sun CD (Hymen)
On House Of The Dying Sun, a range of ingredients melt together to form a fascinating sonic pallette: solid, interlaced patches of percussion and elaborate basslines build the foundation for epic layers of deep ambience, swimming with deep walls of elegiac electrified strings warped from guitars and perfected with the addition of live double bass, electric organ and even disturbing bits of noise.
>William Fitzsimmons – Lions CD/LP (Netterk)
Lions was produced by Chris Walla (guitarist for Death Cab For Cutie and previous production credits include Tegan And Sara and The Postal Service). Born to two blind parents, Fitzsimmons grew up in a home where music was integral to communication. With a Master's degree in counseling, he worked as a mental health therapist and recorded songs during graduate school.
>Candice Glover – Music Speaks CD (Interscope)
Debut album from the Season 12 winner of American Idol featuring the track “Cried."
>Noel Gourdin – City Heart, Southern Soul CD (Shanachie)
A heartfelt mix of rootsy soul and contemporary urban styles.
>The Grouch & Eligh – The Tortoise & The Crow 3xCD (Empire Distribution Corp.)
The Grouch & Eligh’s new triple-disc album consists of one new solo album from The Grouch, one new solo album from Eligh, and one new collaborative G&E album. It features heavyweight guest appearances from Slightly Stoopid, Pretty Lights, Ant of Atmosphere, Zion I, Kreayshawn, Blu & Exile, and others.
>Guided By Voices – Motivational Jumpsuit CD/LP (GBV Inc.)
Motivational Jumpsuit is the latest release by reunited indie rock (whatever that means) juggernaut (means an unstoppable force) Guided By Voices. It speaks in several silvery tongues, and like last year’s English Little League takes many routes to the same shimmery, elusive destination: rock greatness. Features 20 new songs clocking in at 38 minutes.
>Mark Harris – Angry Child CD (n5MD)
"Listening back I was stuck by how all of the pieces were evocative of the landscape of rural Norfolk in the UK where I spent a lot of time when I was a boy, an endless flat landscape where the tide would take the sea out from miles and at times the sea/the sky/and the weather all gradually merge together. I remember how as a boy I would spend hours sitting on a small hill looking out to sea watching the light/clouds and weather gradually change... I hope the listener catches something of the feeling of that place and time by listening to this work." -- Mark Harris
>Porya Hatami – Shallow CD (Tench)
Porya Hatami is an experimental sound artist based in Sanandaj, Iran. Working in the field of ambient/minimal, his compositions explore the balance between electronics and environmental sounds, utilizing processed acoustic and electronic sources and field recordings.
>Hawkwind – Spacehawks CD (Eastworld)
Released late last year in Europe – now available in the US. The 29th studio album from the space rock pioneers is a collection of 14 tracks ranging from the re-imagining of classic hits like “Sunship" and “Season" to brand new, previously unheard tracks like “Lonely Moon."
>I Killed The Prom Queen – Beloved CD (Epitaph)
Third studio album from the Australian metalcore band.
>Issues – Issues CD/LP (Rise)
With the release of their critically acclaimed Black Diamonds EP last November, Issues has seen a tremendous amount of success thanks to their innovative sound and constant tour schedule opening for acts like A Day To Remember, Of Mice & Men, Memphis May Fire, Sleeping With Sirens, and a stint on the Vans Warped Tour.
>Garland Jeffreys – True Confessions: The Epic Sessions 2xCD (Raven)
Excellent two CD set containing three timeless albums by the peerless Garland Jeffreys: Escape Artist, Rock & Roll Adult, and Guts For Love, all originally recorded for Epic Records in the early 1980s. Born in Brooklyn, the enigmatic and inspirational singer/songwriter wrote gritty tales of New York street life with his most famous song “Wild In The Streets" becoming a staple of FM radio. His music is a unique blend of rock & soul, blues and reggae.
>The Jezabels – The Brink CD/LP (The Jezabels)
Australian quartet the Jezabels shimmer with their anthemic, empowering approach to indie pop.
>Junius – Days Of The Fallen Sun CDEP/12" (Prosthetic)
“Somewhere between the intricacy and intimacy of atmospheric metal and the cinematic grandness of art rock, Junius have fashioned an aesthetic that blends the aggressive and the emotive." – Exclaim
>Juvenile – Fundamentals CD (Rap-A-Lot)
New release from rapper/songwriter Terius Gray.
>Takayu Kuroda – Rising Son CD (Blue Note)
Ascendant trumpeter and composer Takuya Kuroda makes his Blue Note debut with the release of Rising Son, which was produced by José James. Kuroda, who is best known for his inspired presence in James' band, steps forth here to helm that remarkable band which features keyboardist Kris Bowers, electric bassist Solomon Dorsey, drummer Nate Smith, and trombonist Corey King.
>Talib Kweli – Gravitas CD/LP (Javotti Media)
“Talib Kweli has a lot to say right now. Each of Gravitas’ eleven tracks casts an eye around the room and picks up something it notices, dissecting it with the same searing attention to detail whether it be the state of the rap game or the politicization of women’s bodies." -- XXL
>Lake Street Dive – Bad Self Portraits CD (Signature Sounds)
Lake Street Dive has been performing for nearly a decade after meeting as fellow students at the New England Conservatory in Boston. Bad Self Portraits is a microcosm of their evolution from a weird alt-country jazz group, to a pop-soul juggernaut with ‘60s influences like Brill Building girl groups, British Invasion rock, horn-driven Stax R&B, Motown soul, and even The Band-like gospel blues.
>Dawn Landes – Bluebird CD (Western Vinyl)
Singer/songwriter Dawn Landes has been writing songs for most of her life, and already has more than a decade of experience as a professional producer and engineer. After leaving NYU where she studied psychology and literature, Landes began honing her production and engineering skills, working at Stratosphere Sound (owned by James Iha, Adam Schlesinger, and Andy Chase), and at Philip Glass' personal recording studio, before launching Saltlands Studio in Brooklyn with partners Steve Salett and Gary Maurer. Her new album, Bluebird, features contributions from Tony Scherr, Rob Moose, and Norah Jones. Vinyl version due March 4.
>Lost In The Trees – Past Life CD/LP+CD (Anti)
When Lost In The Trees set out to record Past Life, they knew they needed a break with the past. On their first two releases Picker had used an expanded six-member band to render his carefully composed, classical-inflected songs. For their new album, the band is pared to a lean electronic-rock four-piece; the arrangements are modern, spare, minimal, emphasizing groove and rhythm, blending the sonic architecture of 21st century electronic dance music, and the sensual swerve of post-Bowie ‘80s pop.
>Lydia Loveless – Somewhere Else CD/LP (Bloodshot)
Without ditching the ribald, spit-in-your-eye attitude of her previous recordings, Loveless travels into some parallel-universe, roots-born Exile In Guyville territory. These are songs that find her asserting stylistic choices, while baring themes of insatiable desire, unrequited emotion, and mistake making on life’s crooked, messed-up path.
>Roc Marciano – Merci Beaucoup CD (Man Bites Dog)
Originally a member of Busta Rhymes crew, Flipmode Squad, Roc left in 2001 to form the UN, a hardcore underground hip-hop group consisting of three other MCs (Dino Brave, Laku & Mic Raw). “Welcome to Marci World — it's a dusky rap wonderland. Since 2010's Marcberg, Long Island-raised rapper and producer Roc Marciano has traveled a steady path to connoisseur's acclaim. He capitalized on the slow-burn, dank appeal of that album with last year's resplendent Reloaded; now, in 2013, he's following up last month's playful The Pimpire Strikes Back with Marci Beaucoup, self-described as more of a producer's project, and proof that he's now master of his own domain." -- Spin
>Jimbo Mathus & The Tri-State Coalition - Dark Night Of The Soul CD/LP Fat Possum)
The late Memphis producer Jim Dickinson once called Jimbo Mathus “the singing voice of Huck Finn." Outside the South, Mathus is likely known as the ringleader of the hyper-ragtime outfit Squirrel Nut Zippers. In his native Mississippi and throughout the South, however, Mathus is the prolific songwriter of born-in-the-bone Southern music, the torchbearer for Deep South mythology and culture. Think Delta highways, bowling-pin Budweisers and “innerplanetary honky-tonk" for the masses.
>Murphy’s Law – Back With A Bong [Reissue/1989] CD/LP (I Scream Records)
Founded in Astoria, Queens in 1983, Murphy’s Law is a huge part of the New York and American hardcore legacy. Their albums, such as the self-titled, Murphy’s Law and its 1989 follow up Back With A Bong helped create the sound of New York Hardcore back in the day, as well as what it stands for today.
>New Bums – Voices In A Rented Room CD/LP (Drag City)
New Bums is the new grudging match-up of Donovan Quinn (Skygreen Leopards) and Ben Chasny (Six Organs Of Admittance, Comets On Fire, 200 Years, Rangda).
>NO – El Prado CD (Arts & Crafts)
“Toronto mainstay indie label Arts & Crafts has been on a roll lately, combing North America far and wide for some of the most brooding, expansive, emotionally-draining indie pop they can find. Fans of local heroes Reuben & The Dark will find much to like on Los Angeles’ NO’s debut album, El Prado: both display a knack for crafting dark, lush pop that seems best suited for overcast skies and rain-soaked urban landscapes." – Beatroute.ca. Vinyl version due April 15.
>Old & In The Way – Live At The Boarding House 4xCD (Acoustic Disc)
Forty years ago on a Monday night, a bluegrass band calling themselves Old & In The Way (featuring Jerry Garcia on banjo, David Grisman on mandolin, Peter Rowan on guitar, Vassar Clements on fiddle and John Kahn on bass) walked on to the stage at The Boarding House in San Francisco. They played again a week later and recorded what would become one of the most influential albums in bluegrass. Now, forty years later, both shows are being released across four CDs.
>Angel Olsen – Burn Your Fire For No Witness CD/LP+MP3 (Jagjaguwar)
On her new album, Burn Your Fire For No Witness, Angel Olsen sings with full-throated exultation, admonition, and bold, expressive melody. With the help of producer John Congleton, her music now crackles with a churning, rumbling low end and a brighter energy. (Limited initial quantities also available on white vinyl.)
>Phantogram – Voices CD/2xLP (Republic)
After a quiet couple years Phantogram came charging back last year with a series of songs expanding the duo’s big, heavy synth-pop. You’ve already heard some of these, like the first single, “Black Out Days," and the more recent (and awesomely titled) “Bill Murray." They’re both on the band’s sophomore album, Voices.
>Sean Paul – Full Frequency CD (Atlantic)
Sixth studio album from the Jamaican dancehall superstar.
>Laurent Perrier - Plateforme #1 CD (Baskaru)
Plateforme is a concept, a restrictive framework Laurent Perrier imposed on himself: to create an electroacoustic piece using solely a set of sound sources provided by a “collaborator." The first three fruits of this vast sonic transmutation project are presented on Plateforme #1, the seeds having been planted by Felix Kubin, Lawrence English, and Gianluca Becuzzi.
>The Presidents Of The United States Of America – Kudos To You! CD (PUSA Corp.)
Kudos To You! is the seventh full length studio album from Seattle's The Presidents Of The United States Of America. Since 1994, PUSA has been spreading their skewed and joyous brand of pop to audiences the world over.
>Pye Corner Audio – Black Mill Tapes 1-4 3xCD (Type)
This 44 track, triple-CD set collects all four volumes of the Black Mill Tapes series. “Lurking in the shadows between deep house, slow techno, Carpenter soundtracks and classic electronica, these sibling albums transcend genres with hallucinatory, shape-shifting effect, trudging from the pastoral whimsy of the first volumes to a darker, less certain point on the horizon. They could just as easily soundtrack a thriller about Balearic drug dealers as a sleazy, modern film noir set in Glasgow or some cosmic sci-fi adventure, spiking stealthy bass grooves with richly visual darkwave motifs and moments of beat-less, flickering neon ambient." – Boomkat
>Sabina – Toujours CD (Bar/None)
Toujours, the first solo record from Brazilian Girls cofounder Sabina, updates the classic ye-ye music that was exploding in France, Italy and Spain in the early ‘60s. Imagine Nico and Serge Gainsbourg having cocktails. Vinyl version due March 4.
>Matt Schofield – As Far As I Can See CD/2xLP (Mascot/Provogue)
Guitarist/singer/songwriter/producer Schofield has been frequently lauded as the British blues guitarist of current times.
>Kevin Seconds – Off Stockton CD/LP (Rise)
11 heartfelt songs that are raw and stripped down yet still brilliantly composed. There is no need for much production; it's a "less is more" mentality for sure. His DIY ethics date back to 1979 when he started seminal punk/hardcore band 7 Seconds.
>Skindred – Kill The Power CD (Red River Entertainment)
Fifth studio album from the Welsh reggae/metal band.
>Slothrust – Of Course You Do CD/LP (Ba Da Bing!)
Led by singer/songwriter/guitarist Leah Wellbaum, Brooklyn’s Slothrust is a rock band of musicians from the jazz/blues tradition who sound nothing like jazz musicians playing rock. Beneath the know-how, their aesthetic is punk as f##k. How perfect, right? You get the zap without the Zappa, not a lot of Yes, but a load of Oh Hell Yeah! Slothrust’s musicianship sneaks up on you, because the first thing that grabs you is how insanely catchy these songs are. Then you realize that it all comes down to the fact that they play fearlessly and full of tenacity.
>Solids – Blame Confusion CD/LP (Fat Possum)
Montreal band Solids went to school with bands from the ‘90s, like Sonic Youth, Dinosaur Jr. and Superchunk. Formed by Xavier Germain-Poitras (guitar) and Louis Guillemette (drums), the duo has understood that melody never shines as much as when it is forced to fight its way through many layers of distortion and feedback effects.
>Ralph Stanley/Ralph Stanley II – Side By Side CD (Rebel)
The ancient and the modern converge to create the timeless in Side By Side, a new recording from vocal titan Ralph Stanley and his gifted son and musical heir apparent, Ralph Stanley II.
>St. Paul & The Broken Bones – Half The City CD/LP (Single Lock)
Half The City is the new album by this Birmingham, Alabama-based sextet, who have already created a maelstrom of interest with their roof-raising live shows and self-released four-song 2012 EP. Produced by Ben Tanner of Alabama Shakes, and recorded and mixed in the storied R&B mecca of Muscle Shoals, Alabama, the album harkens back to the region’s classic soul roots while extending the form with electrifying potency.
>Jim Suhler – Panther Burn CD (Underworld)
Jim Suhler is one of the next generation of great Texas songwriters and guitar slingers and continues the lineage of Texas legends such as Freddie King, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Billy Gibbons and Bugs Henderson.
>Sun Araw – Belomancie CD/2xLP (Sun Ark)
Belomancie is the seventh full-length album from Sun Araw (Cameron Stallones). Belomancie also is a series of corridors that lead to specific chambers. It's designed to be an active listening experience, yet is not designed to accompany existing environments. It's designed as a transportation system. It's recommended to give your full attention and to listen at the highest volume that is comfortable on high quality speaks or with a pronounced stereo field or an excellent pair of headphones.
>Sun Club – Dad Claps At The Mom Prom CD (Goodnight)
Hailing from ever-eclectic Baltimore, Maryland, Sun Club infuses bright instrumentals, animal calls, and delirious stomping with dirty sunshine pop to get your body grooving. Pulling from influences like The Beach Boys and Animal Collective, the band creates an array of energetic noises.
>Swamp Dogg – Cuffed, Collared & Tagged [Reissue/1972] CD/LP (Fat Possum)
Maverick soul artist Swamp Dogg (aka Jerry Williams) has been described as the “soul genius that time forgot" and “a strange combination of Sly Stone’s progressive funk with Frank Zappa’s lyrical absurdism." Vocally, Swamp Dogg sounds like a cross between General Johnson (of Chairmen Of The Board) and Van Morrison; as a songwriter, he's his own man. With the exception of Sly Stone, no other soul men of the period were investigating controversial topics with such infectious musicality and good humor.
>Benmont Tench – You Should Be So Lucky CD (Blue Note)
A dynamic and distinguished set of songs written almost entirely by Tench over the course of his thirty-seven year career not only as a keyboardist and founding member of Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers, but as a first call musician for artists from Johnny Cash and Bob Dylan to The Rolling Stones and Elvis Costello; from the Jayhawks and Ryan Adams to Fiona Apple and John Prine. Vinyl version due April 15.
>Thug Entrancer – Death After Life CD/LP (Software)
Death After Life, Thug Entrancer's debut for Software Recording Co. is a deliberately realized collection of dance experimentation and hybridized electronic music with narrow stylistic precedents. It's also a gripping, somber tide formed from the gravitational pull of an artist's amble through unknown turfs.
>Otto Totland – Pinô CD (Sonic Pieces)
The recognizable continuation of Totland's compositions will attract fans of Deaf Center, and the cinematic and classical components of his solo work will hold sway for those familiar with Harold Budd or Dustin O'Halloran.
>Trin Tran – Far Reaches CD (Castleface)
Trin Tran: The one-man band without a plan, hurtling through the songiverse without a map or compass. For years now, Trin Tran has been creeping out from deep space (Americas Midwest) and bouncing songs off satellites. These transmissions are a testament to his lovely weirdness. This 2014 EP is an injection of strange-pop -- less garage than his recent full-length on Ty Segalls imprint God? Records and more the bastard child of Duran Duran and Bruce Haack.
>Various Artists – Putumayo Presents: Native America CD (Putumayo World Music)
Haunting flute music and entrancing vocals reveal the power of contemporary Native American music from the US and Canada.
>Suzanne Vega – Tales From The Realm Of The Queen Of Pentacles CD (Amanuensis Productions)
The first release of original material in seven years for the New York singer/songwriter.
Vinyl version due March 4. “Vega steps gingerly out of her comfort zone on ‘I Never Wear White,’ its harsh guitars veering towards garage rock, and the banjo-led angry man blues of ‘Song Of The Stoic.’ If any of this proves too much for less adventurous fans, the literate whimsy of ‘Crack In The Wall’ and ‘Silver Bridge’ trek across more familiar terrain." – Record Collector
>Patrick Watson – Just Another Ordinary Day  CD (Secret City)
Just Another Ordinary Day is Patrick Watson’s debut album, which has never been made available until now. Self-released in an extremely limited run in 2003, it showcases him and his band harnessing the atmospheric rock sound that they would come to perfect on 2006’s breakthrough album, Close To Paradise.
>We Are The In Crowd – Weird Kids CD (Hopeless)
A new album featuring more of the pop/punk band’s trademark soaring vocals, powerful arrangements, and updated dynamics.
>Mieczyslaw Weinberg/Kremerata Baltica/Gidon Kremer - Mieczyslaw Weinberg/Kremerata Baltica/Gidon Kremer 2xCD (ECM)
The music of Mieczyslaw Weinberg is finally beginning to get the hearing it has long deserved. Weinbergs lifetime spanned the 20th century: born 1919 in Warsaw, he died 1996 in Moscow, in semi-obscurity. Along the way, his allies and supporters had included Dmitri Shostakovich, who considered him one of the great composers of the age. This double album with the Kremerata Baltica, recorded in Neuhardenberg and Lockenhaus, makes a good case for that claim.
>White Rainbow – THRU.U CD (White Rainbow)
After the release of 2009’s epic New Clouds on Kranky, White Rainbow drastically changed. Dropping all but the most essential elements of his psychedelic sound palette, Forkner steered his sonics towards synthesized funk, woozy post-hi-fi beats and sample chops in digital releases like 2011’s From Now On Let's, 2012’s Trick Shot and 2013’s Sand Quality & Every Answer. THRU.U is the culmination of all this.
>Norma Winstone/Klaus Gesing/Glauco Venier – Dance Without Answer CD (ECM)
The great British jazz singer Norma Winstone once again casts her net wide for source material for this third ECM album with Italian pianist Glauco Venier and German clarinetist/saxophonist Klaus Gesing.
>Young Fathers – Dead CD/LP (Anticon)
Young Fathers are three young men from Edinburgh and Liberia and Nigeria, all at the same time. Their journey has taken them through various incarnations and styles but they are still only in their mid 20s. You can call it hip-hop or rap, but Alloysious, G and Kayus sing more than they chat. There’s an obsession with the surface texture of sound -- the psychedelicist’s love of noise.
>Dan Zimmerman – Dreams Of Earth CD (Sounds Familyre)
With searching eyes that loom large behind impossibly thick bifocals, Zimmerman’s voice is a canyon, as lonely and persistent as the river that carved it. Dan Zimmerman, the Dog-Man, the Cosmic Patriot, the Space Pilgrim, is both seer and seeker, an embracer of limitations and a big-hearted mystic.
>John Zorn – The Alchemist CD (Tzadik)
Zorn’s string quartets are some of the most important modern contributions to the canon and a new Zorn quartet is truly a cause for celebration. His sixth quartet is inspired by the hermetic Angelic actions of John Dee and is replete with the procedures of distillation, calcination, crystallization, sublimation, purification, rotation as well numerology, prayers, canons, contrapuntal complexity and the ghost of a familiar fugue. Also included is Zorn’s mystical response to the ancient Newgrange sacred site in Ireland, a beautiful and evocative setting of Amergin, one of the oldest Celtic sacred texts, written for three female voices.
>John Zorn – Psychomagia CD (Tzadik)
New album by quartet of Abraxas, the acclaimed Moroccan rock arrangements for the Book of Angels series.
DVD & Blu-ray:
>The Allman Brothers Band – Live At Great Woods 9/6/81 DVD (Sony Legacy)
This DVD release of Live At Great Woods fills a crucial gap in The Allman Brothers Band’s videography: after years of demand, fans can experience the original long form video version of this concert (previously only available on VHS), with no interviews edited into the main feature. 91 minutes.
>Asleep At The Wheel – Then And Now DVD (Bismeaux)
This short film and concert footage chronicles the improbable four-decade transformation of a band of ragtag hippies into the 9-time Grammy winning champions of western swing and todays status as Texas cultural icons. From the early days in Paw Paw, WV to the big breaks in San Francisco, settling permanently in Austin, and then on to each of the improbable comebacks through the years, the story culminates in a triumphant 2010 concert the reunites the "family" for its 40th anniversary.
>Suicide Silence - Ending Is Beginning: Mitch Lucker Memorial Show DVD+CD/Blu-ray+CD (Century Media)
Suicide Silence's live memorial show for late frontman Mitch Lucker, recorded 12/21/12.
>Various Artists – Live At Wacken 2012 3xDVD+2xCD (UDR)
There's only one Wacken Open Air. Nothing heats up the summer quite like the world-renowned festival in the north of Germany. 2012’s edition saw heavy hitters like Volbeat, Edguy and Testament tearing up the stages, with 75,000 moshing metalheads in attendance. 60 tracks from 25 bands. 270 minutes.
>7 Days Of Funk – 7 Days Of Funk 8x7" (Stones Throw)
Late-2013 release from the modern funk outfit featuring Dam-Funk and Snoopzilla aka Snoop Dogg. This box set version contains the album's original tracks spread across eight 7" singles, including instrumentals and two bonus tracks.
>David Ackles – David Ackles [Reissue/1968] LP (1972)
David Ackles’s eponymous 1968 debut is a rich emotional experience rife with poignant balladry and evocative lyricism. The era’s market was unprepared for such a singular songwriter, but the cult of Ackles is a potent force and this reissue obliges its demands. Elton John, Bernie Taupin and Elvis Costello are Ackles acolytes—the latter even championed him as “perhaps the greatest unheralded songwriter of the late ’60s."
>Mark Banning – Journey To The Light [Reissue/1985] LP (Students Of Decay)
Recorded in Northern California in 1984 and released in a micro edition by the Creative Sound imprint in January of the following year, Mark Banning’s Journey To The Light is a true lost gem of private issue New Age music, an album that is more spoken about than heard and deserves to be recognized alongside established classics of the genre. Incorporating processed electric guitar, zither, voice and field recordings, it is unabashedly beautiful music—two side-long pieces that feel as though they may have always existed, hanging in the air like a morning fog over the Pacific.
>Beat Happening – Black Candy [Reissue/1989] LP (K Records)
Hey, Gravedigger. Welcome to Black Candy, the fourth Beat Happening album. Bret, Heather, and Calvin explore the more sinister aspects of life, with an eye towards the relief that can be found in its simpler pleasures. "Melancholy" is a word that has been used to describe this approach, though Black Candy does include many optimistic moments. The album has been out of print on vinyl for nearly a decade.
>The Blue Jean Committee/The Fingerlings – Massachusetts Afternoon b/w Embrace Me 7" (Drag City)
Curated by Fred Armisen himself under his "Hometown Heroes" imprint, both Blue Jean Committee and The Fingerlings are little-heard pop music classics. If you've seen Fred's SNL skits, then you know these bands.
>Glen Branca – Lesson No. 1 [Reissue/1980] 2x12" (Superior Viaduct)
After cutting his teeth in the late ’70s no wave scene with bands Theoretical Girls and The Static, Glenn Branca made his first solo statement, Lesson No. 1, in 1980. The inaugural release on legendary post-punk/dance label 99 Records, Lesson No. 1 unveiled Branca’s visionary guitar concepts with two monstrous, sidelong compositions that helped forge NYC’s downtown art-punk sound and acted as a massive influence on countless young groups, including Sonic Youth and Swans.
>Peter Buck – I Am Back To Blow Your Mind Once Again LP (Mississippi)
A new set of rock & roll, all done the old fashioned way -- direct tape cut to lathe cut to vinyl. This time around you’ll find everything from garage rock to psychedelic soundscapes to pretty ballads.
>Bobby Charles – Bobby Charles [Reissue/1972] LP (Light In The Attic)
Bobby Charles pioneered the musical genre known as 'swamp rock' -- he wrote the early rock & roll classic “See You Later, Alligator" (best known via the version by Bill Haley & The Comets). Another early gem penned by Bobby Charles was “Walking To New Orleans," as recorded by Fats Domino. He also appeared at the legendary Last Waltz concert in 1976, in which he performed “Down South In New Orleans" accompanied by The Band and Dr. John. A virtual who's who of classic 'roots' rock, his eponymous 1972 album features ten classics supported by the likes of Rick Danko, Levon Helm, Garth Hudson, and Richard Manuel of The Band, long time Neil Young sidekick Ben Keith, Bob Dylan's former running mate Bob Neuwirth, session maverick Amos Garrett, the esteemed Dr. John, Geoff Muldaur and several others. HQ-180gm.
>Cities Aviv – Come To Life LP (Young One)
Come To Life sees Aviv come full circle -- finding a balance amid the turbulence of burgeoning adulthood, and arising from the transformative flames as a harbinger of the new hip-hop paradigm. His street gospel stylings exist outside of the confines of trend, genre, or time signature, flowing organically within the digital corridor.
>Guy Clark – Old No. 1 [Reissue/1975] LP (4 Men With Beards)
Guy Clark's debut from 1975 is one of the all time classic country singer/songwriter records. By the time of its release the Texas native had been shopping his tunes in Nashville for a few years and the songs from Old No. 1 were already well aged and often covered. Regardless, though Clark considers himself more a songwriter than a recording artist, nobody holds a candle to these performances. HQ-180gm.
>Com Truise – Wave 1 12" (Ghostly International)
First new material since 2011's Galactic Melt LP features guest vocals from Joel Ford (Ford & Lopatin).
>Death – North Street b/w We’re Gonna Make It 7" (Drag City)
Two newly unearthed tracks from Death. "North Street" was recorded in 1980, as Death was transitioning into their next incarnation as The Fourth Movement. The B-side, "We're Gonna Make It" was completed in 1992.
>Gang Starr – Step In The Arena [Reissue/1991] LP (Virgin)
1991’s Step In The Arena is the breakout second full-length album from the legendary East Coast hip-hop duo Gang Starr -- consisting of MC Guru and DJ/producer Premier -- and follow-up to their 1989 debut No More Mr. Nice Guy. The album firmly established Gang Starr’s trademark sound which radically blended the unprecedented jazz samples of Premier with the deadpan street narratives of Guru and greatly altered the boundaries of hip hop in the process.
>Anne Guthrie - Codiaeum Variegatum LP (Students Of Decay)
Based in Brooklyn, Anne Guthrie is a professional acoustician, composer and sound artist whose work combines a highly technical knowledge of natural reverb, field recording and extended microphone techniques with live and processed instrumentation, including French horn, violoncello and contrabass. Her music explores the play of dichotomies: cacophony/beauty, accidental/intentional, unhinged/refined, traditional/outsider.
>The Jimi Hendrix Experience – Purple Haze: 51st Anniversary 7" (Sundazed)
>The House Of Love – The House Of Love [Reissue/1988] LP (Cherry Red Phonograph)
Equally inspired by the '60s pop of the Left Banke, Kinks, Zombies and the more distorted sounds of bands like the Velvets and contemporaries The Jesus & Mary Chain, this was The House Of Love’s first and most fully realized album. Includes two bonus tracks (demo versions of the classic singles, "Shine On" and "Christine").
>Chuck Jackson – I Don’t Want To Cry [Reissue/1961] LP (Sundazed)
Chuck Jackson – On Tour [Reissue/1964] LP (Sundazed)
Uptown soul from a regular visitor to the R&B charts (and an occasional one to the pop listings) in the early '60s with such early pop/soul concoctions as “I Don't Want To Cry," “Any Day Now," and “Tell Him I'm Not Home." HQ-180gm.
>Stefan Jaworzyn – Drained Of Connotation LP (Blackest Ever Black)
Following a brief stint in Whitehouse, in 1986 Jaworzyn formed Skullflower, and in 1990 he established the Shock label (Coil, Dead C). The driving, faintly sociopathic and supremely zoned pieces on Drained Of Connotation were created in early/mid-'82 using a Korg MS10 or 20 and his beloved Dr. Rhythm drum machine.
>Ramblin' Jeffrey Lee & Cypress Grove With Willie Love - Ramblin' Jeffrey Lee & Cypress Grove With Willie Love [Reisue/1992] 2xLP (Bang)
This expanded vinyl reissue of the 1992 album from Gun Club member Ramblin’ Jeffrey Lee includes seven tracks previously unreleased on vinyl.
>Lady Gaga – Art Pop 2xLP (Interscope)
Limited double-vinyl LP pressing in gatefold jacket on silver foil stock.
>Marine Girls – Beach Party [Reissue/1981] LP (Cherry Red Phonograph)
Though misunderstood at the time of its initial release in 1981, the years have been kind to Beach Party and it is now regarded as one of the more important albums of fractured UK twee pop and minimalist post-punk, alongside The Young Marble Giants' classic, Colossal Youth. Formed in Hatfield, Hertfordshire, Marine Girls were an all-female group formed by school friends and include Tracey Thorn, before she found international success with Ben Watt in Everything but the Girl.
>Mouth Of The Architect – Dawning LP (Translation Loss)
Recently released on CD – now available on metallic gold vinyl. “Mouth Of The Architect are probably one of our favorites, their sound leaning a lot more toward the massive, heavy, riffy, doom sludge side of the equation, which just makes the pretty parts all that much more special. And the thing about MOTA, is that even at their heaviest, their crushing downtuned riffs are sort of just supercharged mathrock parts, which gives the whole thing a much more moody emotional vibe, gives it a little more groove, makes it a lot more catchy, even subtly so." -- Aquarius Records
>The Pretty Things – S.F. Sorry [Reissue/1968] LP (Snapper)
Newly remastered from the original analogue tapes and pressed on HQ-180gm vinyl, packaged in a die-cut "tombstone" sleeve, mirroring the original US LP design.
>Lula Reed – Blue And Moody [Reissue/1958] LP (Sundazed)
“Lula Reed’s voice seemed to tremor whenever she sang. As a result, it’s easy to believe every word of both her songs of love and of heartache. On Blue and Moody, she sounds a bit like a cross between Lavern Baker and Billie Holiday. Her high-pitched voice isn’t perfect, but every song on the album is drop-dead sexy ‘50s R&B." – Cahl’s Juke Joint
>Roladex – Anthems For The Modern Age LP (Medical Records)
Imagine Kraftwerk playing Steven Merritt songs. At times their music is cold and moody, at others it is bright and dimly warm. Themes such as nuclear war, cosmology, false memories and technology as the ''opiate of the masses'' become apparent as the listener plays through the LP. Fans of early Wire (esp. 154), Drinking Electricity, Fad Gadget and even noisy ‘90s shoegaze are sure to enjoy.
>Various Artists – 100 Moons: Hindustani Vocal Art 1930-55 LP (Mississippi/Canary)
Absolutely great compilation of early Indian vocal 78s. Features artists such as Faiyaz Khan, Hirabai Barodekar, Dattreya Vishnu Paluskar, and Bade Ghulam Ali Khan. Mediative and exciting vocals from the masters. Great liner notes and mastering by Ian Nagoski complete with photos.
>Various Artists – Anthology Of American Folk Music 1 2xLP (Mississippi)
Various Artists – Anthology Of American Folk Music 2 2xLP (Mississippi)
Various Artists – Anthology Of American Folk Music 3 2xLP (Mississippi)
Various Artists – Anthology Of American Folk Music 4 2xLP (Mississippi)
Mississippi has gone to great lengths to reproduce the LPs just as they originally were designed by Harry Smith. All the materials and mastering are as top notch as possible. Its hard to even begin to talk about the significance of these 8 LPs. Harry Smith created an alternate version of American culture with these sets that influenced just about everyone who heard them. All pressed on HQ-200gm vinyl.
>Abandon All Ships – Malocchio CD (Rise)
Back again with their unique brand of Europop-infused hardcore, Abandon All Ships is following up their debut album Geeving (2010) and sophomore release Infamous (2012).
>Band Of Horses – Acoustic At The Ryman CD/LP+MP3 (Brown Records)
A 10-song virtual "greatest hits" set of acoustic renditions of songs from across the Band Of Horses catalog, recorded at Nashville's legendary Ryman Auditorium over two nights in April 2013. Available on CD and on HQ-180gm vinyl.
>Frankie Ballard – Sunshine & Whiskey CD (Warner Nashville)
The title couldn’t be more fitting for the rising newcomer, who has launched into the Top 20 at Country radio with the smash "Helluva Life."
>Bastard Noise/Lack Of Interest - Bastard Noise/Lack Of Interest CD/LP (Deep Six)
Features four brand new songs from Bastard Noise and nine new songs from Lack Of Interest.
>Bavaria – We’ll Take A Dive CD/LP (n5MD)
Bavaria is John Tejada and Kimi Recor. While We'll Take A Dive is the first for the duo's newly cemented partnership they have appeared as guests on each other's releases for nearly a decade. They decided to exclude any extraneous instrumentation so that Tejada could focus solely on his modular synth programming while Recor took on the role to provide that all-too-vital human element by way of her silky vocal delivery. The album highlights the duo's deftness in getting maximal use from their instruments of choice while creating a superb darkly hued electronic pop album that showcases its own unique strain of affecting tension and restraint.
>Bike For Three! – So Much Forever CD (Fake Four Inc.)
Bike For Three! is Joëlle Lê and Buck 65. Their new album, So Much Forever, opens with the sound of a solitary heart beating underscored by Joëlle’s eerie, soothing atmospherics. From there the urgency of “Full Moon” kicks in and Buck 65 is at the podium, unraveling his innermost thoughts through tightly knit stanzas and abstracted fragments. Vinyl version due March 25.
>Blondfire – Young Heart CD/LP (Tender Tender Rush)
Blondfire is songwriter/vocalist/guitarist Erica Driscoll and her brother Bruce. The two have been playing together since they were kids growing up in Grand Rapids, MI. Their new album channels the irresistible synth-pop feel of British new wave bands like Depeche Mode, New Order, OMD and Pet Shop Boys, as well as the larger-than-life arena-rock ambitions of U2, Coldplay, and even Arcade Fire.
>Breton – War Room Stories CD/LP (Believe Recordings)
War Room Stories was written during a year spent touring incessantly and playing festivals across the world. It was recorded this summer at the Funkhaus in Berlin -- a building with the same otherworldly weirdness as Breton's beloved creative HQ, The Lab in south London. Breton also employed the services of the Macedonian Radio Symphonic Orchestra who appear on five tracks throughout the album. The band recorded the tracks earmarked for orchestration on a laptop, translated them into sheet music and flew to Macedonia where the 44 piece orchestra then played them live in the studio
>Camper Van Beethoven – Our Beloved Revolutionary Sweetheart [Reissue/1988] CD/2xLP (Omnivore)
Camper Van Beethoven – Key Lime Pie [Reissue/1989] CD/2xLP (Omnivore)
Camper Van Beethoven signed with Virgin Records in 1988 and delivered a record, Our Beloved Revolutionary Sweetheart, that defied those who thought the band might 'sell out.' The band returned the following year with what most deem their masterpiece Key Lime Pie. Once again produced by Dennis Herring (Elvis Costello, Counting Crows), the album continued the journey into the world of CVB, but with higher production value and sound than had been heard before. Initial limited quantities of Our Beloved Revolutionary Sweetheart are available on turquoise colored vinyl, while Key Lime Pie has been remastered across two LPs for higher fidelity with an added bonus track, and is pressed on key lime colored vinyl (initial limited quantities, with black to follow).
>The Casket Girls – True Love Kills The Fairy Tale CD/LP+MP3 (Graveface)
The Girls provide lilting, almost whimsical melodies about chemical hazes and love gone sour like a couple of f##ked up Shangri-las, to which Ryan Graveface added a bevy of grinding, multi-dimensional psych-rock synths that will be familiar to anyone with a Black Moth Super Rainbow record in their collection.
>Cheatahs – Cheatahs CD/LP+CD (Wichita)
Cheatahs’ long-awaited new album is first and foremost an exploration of the possibilities of modern guitar music. A blend of ecstatic noise, ambient drone and visceral, ear-splitting alt-rock, combined with lyrics that touch on the complexities of relationships, nature, the city, memory, dislocation and self-identity, Cheatahs displays a giant creative leap from the lo-fi fuzz of the band’s first two EPs.
>Eric Church – The Outsiders CD (Universal Nashville)
“Church name-checks Nirvana and The Clash in ‘That's Damn Rock & Roll,’ his ode to rock's ‘rebel revolution.’ But that thumper comes right after ‘Like A Wrecking Ball,’ a Southern soul burner that Percy Sledge would appreciate, and before ‘Dark Side,’ a meditative ballad with just a touch of menace; it's Church's best evocation of George Jones. The 36-year-old singer's decade-long slow rise has made him as flexible as he is determined. The greatest thing about The Outsiders is its range, both in sound and in the stories he tells.” – NPR
>Cibo Matto – Hotel Valentine CD (Virtual Label)
The ‘90s group returns with a fresh serving of kaleidoscopic grooves, demented horns, crazy synthesizers and funky-but-chic blasts of pure danceability on their first new album in eight years.
>Clan Of Xymox – Matters Of Mind, Body And Soul CD (Metropolis)
In their long and storied history, Clan Of Xymox has developed a signature dark electro-gothic sound that has made the act adored around the world. With the new album, Matters Of Mind, Body And Soul, the band continues to expand on their signature melancholic sound.
>Coil/Nine Inch Nails – Recoiled CD (Cold Spring Records)
Recoiled is a rambunctious alchemy of magical Coil sensibilities and hi-tech home circa '90s mixing technique, all fused in the cave-like early studios of Danny Hyde/Peter Christopherson. These were the unrestrained pre-big studio mix downs of four songs which long time Coil admirer/collaborator Trent Reznor requested Coil to remix. Reznor sent over the original multi-tracks and DATs to Hyde/Christopherson, who independently mixed versions and then met to synch both creations, molding them into these master versions.
>Dead Moon – In The Graveyard [Reissue/1988] CD (M’Lady)
Dead Moon – Unknown Passage [Reissue/1989] CD (M’Lady)
Dead Moon – Defiance [Reissue/1990] CD (M’Lady)
Remastered reissues of rare early recordings (previously reissued on vinyl by Mississippi) from the Oregonian punk rock legends.
>Daley – Days & Nights CD (Universal Republic)
With his signature black frames and mohawk, Daley’s image already surmises his budding status as soul impresario for the 21st century. At only 24-years-old, the homegrown UK singer-songwriter is on his way to redefining the way R&B/Soul not only looks but sounds and feels.
>Douyé – So Much Love CD (Betsy Blue Music)
Sophomore album from the Nigerian-born vocalist. On So Much Love, Douyé (pronounced Doe-Yay) pays homage to the mellow blend of silk and soul made iconic by artists such as Sade, Dianne Reeves, Chanti Moore, Regina Belle, and Rachelle Ferrell.
>Robert Ellis – The Lights From The Chemical Plant CD/2xLP+MP3 (New West)
Robert Ellis's second album continues his journey into folk music he began three years ago, with songs that range from the majestic string-adorned title track to noir pop rock and somber confessionals. Ellis recently told Rolling Stone The Lights From The Chemical Plant is “stylistically ambiguous,” as he is inspired by a wide variety of artists. “On this record I was trying to channel everything from Paul Simon.”
>Bill Emerson – Banjo Man [Reissue/1996] CD (Pinecastle)
Bill Emerson is one of the most influential musicians in bluegrass music. This reissued album from 1996 features great guitar work from Tony Rice, and is one of Emerson’s most popular efforts throughout his 60-year history.
>Exxasens – Satellites CD (Aloud)
Post-rock/post-metal from Barcelona, the new space shuttle for post-rock exploration.
>Fanfarlo – Let’s Go Extinct CD/LP (Blue Horizon Venture)
There aren't many bands that can combine the ambitions of progressive rock storytelling with the kind of hook-friendly accessibility demanded by today's oft-distracted music listener. Fanfarlo can without sounding either pretentious or way out of their element (think a very European Okkervil River). They do it with ease, and the folky elements blend nicely with the contemporary production sounds on all of their releases, but maybe best yet on Let’s Go Extinct.
>Neil Finn – Dizzy Heights CD/LP (Lester Records)
Third solo album from the New Zealand-based singer/songwriter best known for his work with Crowded House and Split Enz. Dizzy Heights was co-produced with Dave Fridmann (MGMT, Tame Impala, The Flaming Lips). “I didn't want to make it a solo record in a stripped back singer/songwriter sort of way,” Finn says. “I had a feeling Dave would be good at adding some odd shapes to the music, which I always welcome -- making things a little more expansive. He is good at subverting things, and making things sound a bit messed up and not as obvious, rather than being too tasteful, which is always a temptation.”
>Fira Fem – Fira Fem CD/LP+CD (Aloud)
Melodious and mischievous psychedelia, exploring shoegaze rhythms without losing its pop mentality.
>The Fleshtones – Wheel Of Talent CD/LP+3x7” (Yep Roc)
13 new tracks full of fuzz guitar and Farfisa organ riffs to satisfy everyone's surf/garage/rockabilly/soul needs.
>F##kin’ Bullocks – International Bikini All-Stars CD/LP (Bcore)
Call it rock, garage, folk, or blues -- this is music made by and for outlaws.
>The Glitch Mob – Love Death Immortality CD/2xLP+MP3 (Glass Air)
“If our last album was introverted, then the new one is definitely extroverted,” Justin Boreta explains of one of this year’s most anticipated electronic-music albums: The Glitch Mob’s Love Death Immortality. Boreta represents one-third of trio’s core members, alongside Ed Ma (aka edIT) and Joshua Mayer (aka Ooah). Together, this supergroup trio of instrumentalist/producers has created the ideal follow-up to their 2010 debut Drink The Sea.
>Noah Gundersen – Ledges CD/LP (Dualtone)
At the tender age of 24, Noah Gundersen is already a young veteran who recorded his first album on his dad's Tascam Studio 8 reel-to-reel home tape machine at 13. Born in the tiny town of Centralia, WA, Gundersen has honed his craft through a series of albums, both solo (with his sister Abby, an expert string player) and with their band The Courage. His latest album, Ledges, self-produced and recorded at Pearl Jam guitarist Stone Gossard's Studio Litho in Seattle.
>Helms Alee – Sleepwalking Strangers CD/LP+MP3 (Sargent House)
“Seattle trio Helms Alee doesn’t really do dead weight: bassist Dana James, guitarist Ben Verellen and drummer Hozoji Matheson-Margullis all split singing and songwriting duties, oftentimes in the course of a single tune. ‘Tumescence’—the first cut off of their new third LP of wonderfully sticky pop-metal, Sleepwalking Sailors—thrives on the tension created by pushing these parts into a tight, three-minute space.” -- Pitchfork
>Hollow & Akimbo – Hollow & Akimbo CD/LP (Quite Scientific)
Sharing a fascination with old tape machines and strange sounds and recording in basements, bedrooms, attics, and closets, Hollow & Akimbo amassed an evolving archive of musical snippets, song fragments and a fair share of noisy four-track experiments -- a shining example of the type of refined and unique electro-pop the duo is becoming known for.
>Hurray For The Riff Raff – Small Town Heroes CD/LP (ATO)
Produced by frontwoman Alynda Lee Segarra and engineered by Andrija Tokic (Alabama Shakes), Small Town Heroes features twelve new, original songs all written or co-written by Segarra, with support from a vivid cast of Crescent City musicians including her longtime right-hand-man on fiddle, Yosi Perlstein, keyboard player Casey McAllister, and two members of the Deslondes: Sam Doores on guitar and Dan Cutler on bass. “Singer Alynda Lee Segarra said the album isn’t just about New Orleans—it’s about her. She uses crisp country melodies to bear witness to the dreams and nightmares that come with living in a place like Louisiana.” – Paste Magazine
>Illum Sphere – Ghost Of Then & Now CD/2xLP (Ninja Tune)
Ryan Hunn, aka Illum Sphere, is founder of Manchester’s renowned club night Hoya:Hoya, has remixed Radiohead, toured the world’s best club nights and released music on some of its finest imprints – 3024, Tectonic, Young Turks, and now Ninja Tune, where he’s found a long term home.
>The Internet – Feel Good CD (Columbia)
While their first album, Purple Naked Ladies, consisted primarily of production and vocals, Feel Good sees founding members Matt Martians and Syd The Kyd expanding to a full band and a bolder sound. Additionally, The Internet worked with a range of guest vocalists and musicians such as Mac Miller, Yuna, and Jesse Boykins The III. They also worked with producers such as Thundercat, Chad Hugo (The Neptunes), and Grammy-nominated guitarist and producer Mike Einziger. “The album is a journey through funk and soul through the eyes of young adults trying to find their way.” -- Syd Tha Kyd
>Jamestown Revival – Utah CD/LP (Wild Bunch)
Texas-bred/Los Angeles-based self-described "back-porch folk-rock" duo Jamestown Revival formed in 2011 around the talents of childhood friends Jonathan Clay and Zach Chance. Growing up together in the small Texas town of Magnolia, Clay and Chance spent their formative years listening to artists like Creedence Clearwater Revival, Willie Nelson, the Everly Brothers, Guy Clark, and John Prine, each eventually carving out his own unique niche as a solo artist. The duo spent time in Austin before relocating to Los Angeles, where they began writing together in earnest.
>Stacey Kent – Changing Lights CD (WB)
The Changing Lights is a musical journey through jazz, bossa nova and chanson, including a mixture of bossa nova classics from Tom Jobim, Marcos Valle, and also Roberto Menescal, who appears as a featured guest on the album.
>Greg Laswell – I Was Going To Be An Astronaut CD (Vanguard)
I Was Going To Be An Astronaut finds Greg Laswell exploring his own back pages, as the acclaimed performer delivers striking new renderings of his most lasting compositions.
>Lillies On Mars – Dot To Dot CD (Saint Marie)
Dot To Dot features retro futurist sounds blended with electro dream pop, experimenting with vintage organs, synthesizer, psychedelic oscillations and echoes.
>Zara McFarlane – If You Knew Her CD/LP (Brownswood Recordings)
New album from the British jazz vocalist, her second to be released on Gilles Peterson's Brownswood Recordings. This new, emotionally charged body of work sees her blossoming as a lyrically conscious songwriter, cementing what Until Tomorrow revealed -- an artist composing original songs, telling her own stories, demanding attention for their daring brilliance.
>Lubomyr Melnyk – Windmills CD (Hinterzimmer Records)
Windmills is a stunning tour de force and is Melnyk’s signature two-piano work, as it takes you through a dramatic and emotional sequence in the life of an old and battered windmill from the turning of its gears to its beautiful closing Finale.
>Modern Baseball – You’re Gonna Miss It All CD/LP (Run For Cover)
Philadelphia's Modern Baseball is a uniquely contemporary band. Their quirky, tuneful songs convey how it feels to be young and hopeless in modern America -- a cracked cellphone clutched in one's hand, subconsciously refreshing social media, hoping to get noticed by that girl at the party and ignored by the ghosts from high school past. Calling on Say Anything's bravado, the Front Bottoms' tongue-in-cheek quirk and the Weakerthans' literary misery, Modern Baseball have made a record with remarkable depth and relate-ability.
>Mark Mulcahy – Dear Mark J. Mulcahy, I Love You CD/LP (Fire)
“Mulcahy has had a creatively fruitful solo music career since, but in 2008, his wife died, leaving him with twin 3-year-old daughters. To meet the demands of single parenthood, he stopped recording and touring. A tribute album titled Ciao My Shining Star was released in 2009 to help raise money for him; it featured Michael Stipe, Thom Yorke, The National, Juliana Hatfield and many others singing Mulcahy's songs. Dear Mark J. Mulcahy, I Love You is his first full-length album in eight years. It's full of smart wordplay and Mulcahy's unmistakable voice, but also driven by loss.” – NPR
>The Names – In Time CD (Factory Benelux)
New album from the acclaimed Belgian new wave group best known for their association with Factory Records and producer Martin "Zero" Hannett.
>Nostalgia 77 – A Journey Too Far CD/LP (Tru Thoughts)
A Journey Too Far sees the London based producer, guitarist, songwriter and bandleader further developing his creative partnership with German singer Josa Peit. Lead single “An Angel With No Halo” finds Lamdin melding inspirations from the English folk and psychedelic scene to the '60s orchestral pop of Gainsbourg and Axelrod.
>Opitope – Physis CD (Spekk)
Opitope is a duo by ambient master Chihei Hatakeyama and Tomoyoshi Date (from Illuha) and their first album Hau is still one of the best sellers in the Spekk catalog. Physis is their second album following their session recording album A Colony Of Kuala Mute Geeks which was taken with their fellow musicians, and seven years after the glorious Hau album.
>Nina Persson – Animal Heart CD (The End)
Nina Persson, lead singer of The Cardigans and A Camp, presents her debut solo album. Vinyl version due March 18.
>Rod Picott – Hang Your Hopes On A Crooked Nail CD (Welding Rod Music)
The son of a welder from rural New England, Rod Picott is a masterful songwriter and soulful singer who carries with him as fine a suitcase of songs as you'll find anywhere. A former construction worker who hung up his tools when he released his debut album in 2000, Picott has carved a career for himself with a run of six beautifully crafted self-released CDs over the last 13 years and a well-earned reputation as an engaging, emotion fueled performer.
>Pinetop Perkins – On The 88s Live In Chicago CD (Kingston)
Grammy Award winner Pinetop Perkins was one of the last great Mississippi bluesmen. He
began playing blues in the late 1920s, and is widely regarded as one of the best, and certainly
the most enduring. This new release was recorded when he was 88 years young, in Chicago.
Perkins was still regularly touring the world when he passed away in 2011.
>Picture – Diamond Dreamer/Picture One [Reissue/1981-1983] CD (Divebomb)
Digitally remastered twofer containing a pair of albums from one of the Netherland's first heavy metal bands.
>Plunky & Oneness – Never Too Late CD (Name Brand Records)
The 25th album from Afro-funk jazz veteran J. Plunky Branch and his backing group. Never Too Late is an ambitious 16-song collection of neo-soul, nu-jazz, and hip-hop songs about love, wisdom and purposeful partying.
>Poemss – Poemss CD/2xLP+MP3 (Planet Mu)
Poemss is a new project from Toronto-based producer Joanne Pollack in collaboration with Aaron Funk (Venetian Snares).
>Dianne Reeves – Beautiful Life CD (Concord)
There should be no overlooking Beautiful Life, a journey of 12 songs which includes singularly memorable covers of Bob Marley's "Waiting In Vain," Fleetwood Mac's "Dreams," Marvin Gaye's "I Want You" and Ani DiFranco's self-empowering "32 Flavors." Included in the rest of the tracks, which cover the spectrum from jazz to soul, are two new songs "Cold" and "Satiated" which are emotionally volcanic.
>Rufus Reid – Quiet Pride: The Elizabeth Catlett Project CD (Motema Music)
New release from the legendary jazz bassist. Quiet Pride features a 20-piece large ensemble, jazz-meets-classical masterwork composed, arranged, and conducted by Rufus. This five-of the highest order, whose work is featured in museums and public places around the country.
>Sam Roberts Band – Lo-Fantasy CD/LP (Paper Bag)
Lo-Fantasy is Sam Roberts Band's first new album in three years. Working for the first time with producer Youth (a.k.a. Martin Glover) whose credits range from The Verve's Urban Hymns to Crowded House, as well as stints performing with Paul McCartney, The Orb, and post-punk outfit Killing Joke, Lo-Fantasy infuses Sam Roberts Band's rousing brand of rock & roll with elements of funk, house, electronic, and African music. Available on CD and on limited edition gold vinyl featuring the bonus track, “Durban Days.”
>Catherine Russell – Bring It Back CD (Jazz Village)
With Bring It Back, vocalist Catherine Russell digs deeper into a rich vein of musical treasures. Mining legendary collaborations between her father, Luis Russell and the great Louis Armstrong, Russell brings along her team from two previous chart-topping albums, the latest of which won the Prix du Jazz Vocal from L'academie du Jazz and Grand Prix du Hot Club de France. Gems from the jazz age and swing era, performed with new arrangements for ten-piece orchestra blend seamlessly with reinventions sourced from Blues icons Esther Phillips, Al Hibbler, Wynonie Harris and Little Willie John.
>Kim Simmonds And Savoy Brown – Goin’ To The Delta CD (Ruf Records)
A new collection of boogies, shuffles, and the blues from a master of the genre(s).
>Snowmine – Dialects CD (Mystery Buildings)
Snowmine share some insight on the recording process behind their new album Dialects: “To give you some background on the recording, there are no foreign samples on this album. Every single sound and orchestral moment was written, arranged, and recorded by us. The goal of the album was to capture a surreal ambiance that married hyper modern ambient synth tones with vintage ‘60s sounding cinematic orchestral motifs. We recorded a choir, strings, woodwinds, and reamped synths in a church to capture truly real stereo reverbs, so in headphones you can feel physical, not artificially created space.”
>Solvent – New Ways: Music From The Documentary I Dream Of Wires CD/2xLP (Suction)
For the past three years, Solvent's obsession with synthesizers and electronic music has taken him on a new path, a journey deep into the world of modular synthesizers. Serving as producer, co-writer and interviewer for I Dream Of Wires, a documentary about the history, demise and resurgence of the modular synthesizer, Solvent's Jason Amm has played a pivotal role in creating one of the most talked-about and revered electronic music documentaries in recent years.
>Soundtrack – A Night With Janis Joplin (Original Broadway Cast Recording) CD (Broadway)
“Ms. Davies... has captured the Joplin sound perfectly and keeps the house rocking, rocketing through at least a dozen of Joplin s best-known songs, and singing them with a throbbing fervor that is often riveting.” -- The New York Times
>Wolfgang Strutz - Wolfgang Strutz CD (Emphasis)
Having made her first recording in grade school as half the pop duo Beethoven’s Duet, and performance beginning while attending high school in the techno duo Joey Baby Tonight, Madelyn Strutz aka: Wolfgang Strutz is no stranger to the Chicago eclectic music scene. As a music major at Columbia College, her formal education brought yet another side of expansion for Wolfgang. While studying the roots of modern, African, and American folk music, she found herself enlisting as a member of the Alternative folk band odd folk touring the Midwest.
>Suburban Mutilation – Opera Ain’t Over ‘Til The Fat Lady Sings CD (Beer City)
Digitally remastered and expanded edition of this release from one of the first hardcore bands from Wisconsin. Suburban Mutilation played a whole lot of shows, put out demos, were on a lot of classic early-to-mid '80s comps and released this full length in '84. The CD not only has the original full length but also another 30 bonus tracks (some never even heard before) from 1981-1984 and includes a 16- page booklet containing lyrics, show flyers, photos and liner notes by Rev. Norb telling the story of the band from the start till the very end.
>Sun Kil Moon – Benji CD (Caldo Verde)
Features guest musicians Steve Shelley, Jen Wood, Will Oldham, and Owen Ashworth. Double-CD version includes five track bonus disc and a lyric poster. “There are 11 songs on Sun Kil Moon’s astonishing sixth LP Benji, and in nearly all of them, somebody dies. Mark Kozelek wants us to know that they all lived, loved, fought, f##ked up, and often did the best they could. While Benji is consumed with death, sadness, and tragedy, there's gratitude within this melancholy, and it’s Kozelek’s most life-affirming record.” BNM [9.2] – Pitchfork
>Teitur – Story Music CD/LP (Arlo & Betty)
The sixth album from the critically-adored singer/songwriter. Teitur Lassen is from the Faroe Islands who resides in the UK. Teitur (pronounced "tie-tor") originally left the Faroe Islands for Copenhagen when he was 17 after fronting a pop/rock band. He set upon writing music full-time and eventually caught the attention of former BMI executive Christian Ulf-Hansen, who became his manager. Teitur found himself opening for Suzanne Vega, Glen Phillips, Aimee Mann, and John Mayer amongst others.
>Temples – Sun Structure CD (Fat Possum)
Looking like a West Coast psych band, Temples bear all the hallmarks of cosmic travelers. There's the band name, for starters, there are track titles that sound like JG Ballard novels (Prisms, The Golden Throne, Sun Structures) and there's the fact that they take incense sticks on the road with them. But if all of the above suggests Temples are backwards-lookin’, think again. The Kettering four-piece's music is a mix of scuzzy glam stomp, dreamy, 12-string-drenched folk-rock, droning psych and more Vinyl version due February 25.
>Thumpers – Galore CD/LP+MP3 (Sub Pop)
The London-based band duo creates colorful, exuberant alt-pop that celebrates their innate musical kinship and draws upon their shared childhood memories. Layered androgynous vocals are backed by muscular drums, astral synths, and shimmering guitars in a celebration of the breathless sensations of youth and coming of age.
>Tinariwen – Emaar CD/2xLP+CD (Anti)
For Saharan blues band Tinariwen, the desert is home; their hypnotic and electrifying guitar rock reflects the melding of their Tuareg musical heritage with modern urban blues. Their 2011 album Tassili, recorded in the Algerian desert, won a Grammy Award for Best World Music album. Now their new record Emmaar returns to their roots, delivering stripped-down dirges and effervescent electric anthems.
>Kate Tucker + The Sounds Of Sweden – The Shape, The Color The Feel CD (Red Valise)
Born in Seattle and based in Nashville, Kate Tucker + The Sons Of Sweden play lush, layered indie rock with sparkling melodies and shimmering soundscapes. “The Shape, The Color The Feel bristles with newfound urgency, guitarist Wes Chandler's reverbed, Edge-influenced guitar lines serving as a powerful backdrop to Tucker's lighter-than-air vocal presence on the punchy, perfectly modulated ‘Hangover’ and new single ‘Looking Around.’” – Direct Current
>Unguided – Fragile Immortality CD (Napalm)
A highly dynamic and electrifying melodic death metal album. For fans of Five Finger Death Punch, Heaven Shall Burn, Devildriver, All Shall Perish.
>Van Canto – Dawn Of The Brave CD/2xCD (Napalm)
Van Canto create unique “a cappella metal.” Only supported by a drummer, the German sextet offers the perfect blend of sweeping original songs and cover versions of legendary rock classics such as Black Sabbath’s "Paranoid" and Europe’s "The Final Countdown." Available in Regular and Deluxe Editions.
>Various Artists – Punk 45 Vol. 2: Underground Punk In UK 1977-1981 CD/LP (Soul Jazz)
Soul Jazz Records’ new Punk 45 album charts the rise of underground punk across the US in the years 1973-1980. The album coincides with the release of the label’s massive new deluxe 400-page Punk 45s cover art book edited and compiled by Jon Savage (author of the seminal book on punk, England’s Dreaming) and Stuart Baker (founder of Soul Jazz Records). This compilation features a selection of seminal, classic, obscure and rare punk and proto-punk 7” singles from the likes of Pere Ubu, The Zeros, The Randoms, Electric Eels, The Pagans, The Deadbeats, The Lewd and many more.
>Various Artists - Rough Guide To The Best African Music You've Never Heard 2xCD (World Music Network)
All of the artists featured on this unique Rough Guide present distinctive, original sounds emanating from Africa, selected exclusively from groups entering World Music Network's Battle Of The Bands competition. Check out Tani Diakite's brand of Afro-funk, Simo Lagwani's Moroccan gnawa grooves and Wayo's South Sudanese trance percussion.
DVD & Blu-ray:
>Jeff Beck – The Jeff Beck Years DVD (Laser Media)
A collection of Jeff Beck performing with The Yardbirds, UPP and Jeff Beck Group in the ‘60s and ‘70s. 40 minutes.
>Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young – Fifty By Four: Half A Century Of CSNY DVD (Pride)
This is CSNY's story, a journey of breakthroughs, breakdowns, break-ups and incredible music. Featuring exclusive interviews, seldom-seen footage, classic and rare performances, and contributions from those who worked closely with CSNY across the years -- including Dallas Taylor, Greg Reeves, Danny Kortchmar, Joe Lala, Chad Cromwell, Joe Vitale, The Albert Brothers, Bill Halverson plus many others.
>Devo – The Complete Truth About De-Evolution DVD (MVD Visual)
Devo, the seminal new wave audio-visual concept band made a career out of setting to music video their dada-gone-camp theory of De-Evolution and its rebuke of corporate culture. Includes 19 music videos, rare performance footage, tons of extras and more. 60 minutes.
>Eminem – The Marshall Plan 2xDVD (Pride)
This two-disc set traces the history of Eminem's career by way of, firstly a DVD documentary covering his rise to the top, and a second disc overflowing with video interviews with the man himself taken from across his career to date.
>P##sy Riot – A Punk Prayer DVD (New Video Group, Inc.)
Mike Lerner and Maxim Pozdorovkin's documentary. With unparalleled exclusive access, this film tells the incredible story of three young women: Nadia, Masha, and Katia, members of the feminist art collective Pussy Riot, who performed a 40-second "punk prayer" inside Russia's main cathedral. This performance led to their arrest on charges of religious hatred.
>Lou Reed – A Tribute 3xDVD (Chrome Dreams)
This triple-DVD set collects three separate films: The Velvet Underground – Under Review which covers the music and career of arguably rock music's most influential collective; Punk Revolution NYC: The Velvet Underground, The NY Dolls & The CBGBs Set, which traces the entire history of New York's punk scene; and The Sacred Triangle: Bowie, Iggy & Lou 1971-1973 which tells the story of how these three musical pioneers interwove at the beginning of each of their solo careers. 279 minutes.
>Various Artists – Festival Express DVD/Blu-ray (Shout Factory)
In the summer of 1970, some of the era's biggest rock stars took to the rails for Festival Express, a multi-artist, multi-city concert tour that captured the spirit and imagination of a generation. What made it unique was that it was portable; for five days, the bands and performers lived, slept, rehearsed and let loose aboard a customized train that traveled from Toronto, to Winnipeg, to Calgary, with each stop culminating in a mega-concert. The entire experience was filmed both off-stage and on, but the extensive footage and sound tapes of the events remained locked away for decades, only recently having been rediscovered and restored. Featuring The Band, Janis Joplin, Grateful Dead, and Buddy Guy. 90 minutes.
>Aa – VoyAager LP (Northern Spy)
Recently released on CD – now available on vinyl. "Big A little a" -- one of the quintessential house bands of Brooklyn's mid-aughts loft party/DIY scene -- have returned with their first U.S. release since 2007. VoyAager expands dramatically on the band's primordial polyrhythms and noise palette to embrace lush electronic psychedelia, enveloping vocal textures, and even unexpected, glittering explosions of pop melodicism.
>Angry Samoans – Inside My Brain [Reissue/1980] LP (Drastic Plastic)
Angry Samoans – Back From Samoa [Reissue/1982] LP (Drastic Plastic)
Formed in 1978, the Angry Samoans are classic first wave L.A. punk at its finest. For fans of Black Flag, TSOL, Circle Jerks, and Fear. Inside My Brain is pressed on limited 150gm blood-spatter color vinyl, while Back From Samoa is pressed on HQ-200gm black vinyl.
>Anti You – Blank Stares LP (Six Weeks)
Anti You take razor sharp, fast European hardcore influence from bands like Mob 47 and Raw Power and collide it with the intensely catchy sounds of the early L.A., D.C. and Boston 1982-84 scenes, channeling Minor Threat, Circle Jerks, and Jerry’s Kids while retaining originality and electrifying the punk world with a new set of classic punk songs for this current millennium.
>Blowlfy – Black In The Sack LP (Patac)
Limited vinyl pressing of the 2012 album from the caped, masked, original dirty rapper, godfather of hip-hop, XXX-rated funk legend, party record king and The Maestro of The Miami Soul Sound. Black In The Sack is a hilarious romp through soul music history, which hilariously perverts the classic soul hits and also AC/DC and Black Sabbath as well. Tesco Vee appears on the album to narrate the insanity and Ohio sludge masters Fistula provide the soundtrack to a perverted rendition of Black Sabbath's signature song entitled “Dick Stabbath.”
>Channel Three – Fear Of Life [Reissue/1982] LP (Drastic Plastic)
Vinyl reissue from the ‘80s rock band, with limited initial quantities pressed on color vinyl. “This USA-based hardcore band comprised Mike Magrann (vocals, guitar), Kimm Gardner (guitar), Larry Kelly (bass) and Mike Burton (the most permanent of their first four drummers). Residents of the suburban community of Cerritos in south Los Angeles, they originally formed in 1980.” -- AllMusic
>David Crosby – Croz LP (Blue Castle)
Recently released on CD – now available on vinyl. Croz is David Crosby's first studio album in over 20 years, a collection of 11 new tracks from one of America's most notable singer/songwriters. The album features guest appearances from Wynton Marsalis, Mark Knopfler, Leland Sklar and Steve Tavaglione.
>Crosses - +++ LP+MP3 (Sumerian)
Los Angeles, CA based trio Crosses features Chino Moreno on vocals (Deftones), Shaun Lopez (Far) and Chuck Doom. Two previous EP were released for free starting in 2011 and the second in 2012. (Limited quantities available on white vinyl.)
>Jeremy Enigk – Vale Oso LP (Bcore)
The vinyl version of 2009's OK Bear, which was the third solo album from the legendary Sunny Day Real Estate frontman.
>The Ex – How Thick You Think b/w That’s Not A Virus 7” (Ex Records)
Two blinding new tracks by The Ex. The A-side is inspired by the short film Neighbours (Norman McLaren, 1952). Side B boasts a melodic and unique rhythm, freshly pulled out of the Dutch clay, sounding as if it already exists for 2000 years.
>Exmortus – Slave To The Sword LP (Prosthetic)
Recently released on CD – now available on vinyl. Exmortus are an entity amongst themselves, and their music -- both complex and thoroughly hook-laden -- refuses to lend itself to easy categorization. From the technical death/thrash riffage and surgically precise drumming to their neo-classical, twin virtuoso lead guitar attack, fans of death metal, thrash, prog metal, traditional heavy metal and all true metal sub-genres alike enjoy having their craniums crushed by the fury of Exmortus.
>Keel Her – Don’t Look At Me 7” (Critical Heights)
“Don’t Look At Me” features echoey vocals, tumbledown beats and a melody plucked from a battered Strat.
>Lori Goldston – Creekside: Cello Solo LP (Mississippi)
Lurking around the NW music world for years playing with the likes of The Black Cat Orchestre, Earth, David Byrne, Terry Riley, Nirvana, and tons more, Goldston's beautiful cello playing is here in it's purest form: unaccompanied and acoustic. Warm, emotional pieces of music played by someone who really knows their way around the cello.
>Le Mur – Silentia Nova LP (Sireena)
Heavy-dark-trip-rock with prog influences and space rock. The songs are heavy, partly grim (sometimes reminiscent of the Velvet Underground), with rampant instrumental sections a la Hawkwind.
>Roy Montgomery/Grouper – Split 10” (Mississippi)
Repress of the extremely sought after split from these two well-loved ambient/drone folkies.
>Mozes & The First Born – Mozes & The First Born LP (Burger)
Top shelf debut of Dutch jangly teenage garage pop perfection. CD version due February 25.
>Mt. Royal – Mt. Royal EP 12”+MP3 (Bella Union)
Mt. Royal is a new psychedelic pop group from Baltimore, MD. The band comprises of Katrina Ford (vocals), Ed Harris (bass), Matt Pierce, (keys), Woody Ranere (guitar) and Mike Lowry (drums). Katrina is best known as the vocalist of Celebration, leading lights of Baltimore’s music scene.
>Nausea – Condemned To The System LP (Deep Six)
New album from the grindcore band, recently released on CD – now available on vinyl.
>New Coke – Duct Tape Your Mouth 7” (Black Gladiator)
Seven stiff black inches of terribly dark and uncomfortable lyrics, firmly planted on top of the catchiest tunes this side of the Reigning Sound. Relentless R&B fueled backbeats with gorgeous melodies.
>Night Sun – No Pressure b/w On My Way 7”+MP3 (Burger)
Night Sun features members of Black Lips, Night Beats, and Curtis Harding.
>Nirvosas – Nirvosas 2xLP (P. Trash)
A three-headed monster of punk.
>Open Mike Eagle – Rappers Will Die Of Natural Causes LP (Hellfyre Club)
A soulful and inspired hip-hop album by Chicago-bred, South Los Angeles-raised MC Open Mike Eagle. Entertaining the whole way through, Rappers Will Die Of Natural Causes combines strong harmonies, smart lyrics and multi-layered beats with Open Mike Eagle's straightforward style.
>Orange Juice – You Can’t Hide Your Love Forever [Reissue/1982] LP (Domino)
Orange Juice – Rip It Up [Reissue/1982] LP (Domino)
Orange Juice – Texas Fever [Reissue/1984] LP (Domino)
Orange Juice – The Orange Juice [Reissue/1984] LP (Domino)
Recently released on CD – now available on vinyl. “The leaders of the Scottish neo-pop uprising Orange Juice formed in Glasgow in late 1976. Originally dubbed the Nu-Sonics, the group comprised vocalist/guitarist Edwyn Collins, guitarist James Kirk, bassist David McClymont, and drummer Steven Daly; following the formation of the Postcard label by Collins protégé Alan Horne, the quartet renamed itself Orange Juice in 1979, adopting the new moniker as well as an aura of romantic innocence as a direct reaction to the increasingly macho aggression of punk” – AllMusic.
>Panic Beats – Rest In Pieces LP (P. Trash)
More rotten slaughter punk -- a frantic feast of 12 horror flick-inspired, Ramones-riff-drenched, and maniacally driven songs that leave nothing to the imagination.
>Pink Wine – Pink Wine LP (P. Trash)
Take one part sucked blood from the Marked Men or Outtacontroller and one part pure sweat from Nobunny or Hunx, and set to an old fashioned tub filled with ice to take a header into and you got a good idea of what this record is all about. Wacky power pop punk.
>Pop. 1280 – Thirteen Steps 7” (Blind Prophet)
Pop. 1280 takes the sonic palate of the bands like Cop Shoot Cop, Swans, or even The Contortions and put it thru a cyberpunk blender; somehow in the process managing to make catchy songs out of dissonant noise, scrap metal, synths and drums.
>Poohbah – U.S. Rock [Reissue/1976] LP (Ripple Music)
“A blowout of English-power-trio and Rust Belt blues, with guitarist Jim Gustafson riffing in a thick-fuzz lather that will remind you, fondly, of Grand Funk Railroad’s Max Farner and the British ace Tony McPhee of the Groundhogs.” -- David Fricke/Rolling Stone
>PYPY – Pagan Day LP (Black Gladiator)
Superdope psych punk featuring members of CPC Gangbangs, Red Mass, and Duchess Says. A mind searing concoction of sinister wah-wah freakouts littered with fuzz, distortion, and the necromantic scree of co-lead singer Annie Claude Deschenes.
>Rawhide – Murder One LP (Patac Records)
Swedish Death punk & roll rebels Rawhide are pleased to spew forth Murder One, their first proper full-length. Spawned over a decade ago by guitarist/vocalist Robert and Captain Twofinger, the band tips its pints to the teachings of Motörhead, Turbonegro, Hellacopters and GG Allin.
>Rockpile – Seconds Of Pleasure [Reissue/1980] LP+7” (Yep Roc)
Vinyl reissue comes with the original bonus 7”, a 4-song EP titled Nick Lowe & Dave Edmunds Sing The Everly Brothers, which was included in the first pressing. Though Rockpile managed only one, nigh-perfect album at the height of the '80s new wave boom, its members -- Dave Edmunds, Nick Lowe, Billy Bremner, and Terry Williams -- had played together in various incarnations, in some instances for over a decade: Edmunds and drummer Williams had been in the '60s power trio Love Sculpture; all had played on Lowe's '78 album Jesus Of Cool and Edmunds's '79 collection Repeat When Necessary.
>Snowbird – Moon LP (Bella Union)
Released last week on CD – now available on vinyl. “The creative union of former Cocteau Twin and current Bella Union label boss Simon Raymonde and Wisconsin-born singer/songwriter Stephanie Dosen was always likely to give birth to something of beauty. In that respect, Moon fully lives up to its billing. Under the name Snowbird, the duo has crafted an intricate set of graceful songs that simply glide off Raymonde’s piano and Dosen’s tongue. As sensual as it is enigmatic, the album is a product of a long-distance nighttime liaison between the pair, with Raymonde laying down instrumental tracks after sundown to send to the North Carolina-based Dosen, who would improvise vocals over them and post the results back to London.” – Consequence Of Sound
>Soft Science – Detour LP+MP3 (Test Pattern)
Soft Science, from Sacramento, California, creates a unique form of dream pop, inspired by '90s shoegaze and '60s British pop. Pop Matters said in a recent review that the band “has the potential to become one of the great Left Coast power pop bands.”
>Speedy Ortiz – Real Hair LP+MP3 (Carpark) On Speedy Ortiz's Real Hair, the band sets a course between the knotty discord of debut album Major Arcana and the pop bonafides of the preceding Sports EP, while subtly adding new techniques to their songbook. Guitarists Sadie Dupuis and Matt Robidoux brought on additional guitar effects to color the roundabout feel of "Oxygal," and bassist Darl Ferm and drummer Mike Falcone hit hard to deliver the jump-in-the-pit urgency of "American Horror." With Real Hair, Speedy Ortiz once again taps into the four-part chemistry that brought their prior outings praise. Limited edition orange vinyl with Speedy Ortiz-designed temporary tattoos.
>Toundra – III LP (Aloud)
Debut LP from instrumental hardcore band, recalling Isis, Mogwai, and a less metal Tool but never so much as to sound outdated or used.
>Vånna Inget – Ingen Botten LP (P. Trash)
Sharp guitar riffs and shimmering organ melodies woven together with an attentive and dynamic rhythm section, with plenty of room to move within the arrangements. A unique meeting between raw, punkish nerve and melodic sensibility, turning claustrophobic themes of confinement and desperation into something that feels uplifting and liberating.
>Vardlokk – Skraelingjahlaut 7” (Outer Battery)
With driving doom riffs, laden with layers of guitar, bass fuzz, and Norwegian growled choruses, Vardlokk tells the story of the Vikings in Vinland (Newfoundland) in the year 1000 A.D. Limited edition white vinyl.
>Weekend Nachos – Still LP (Deep Six)
New release from Chicago’s hateful hardcore warriors. Still is an album filled with punishing power violence. Absolutely crucial negative, hateful gardcore for fans of Infest and Nails.
>Whiskey Myers – Early Morning Shakes LP (Wiggy Thump)
Recently released on CD – now available on vinyl. Whiskey Myers make honest music. Loud and proud, they sing about what they know with a refreshing directness and clarity. Some call it rebel music, but it’s more like everyday soul. Their songs are stories, with relatable characters and situations. Stories of celebration, of mourning, of trials and triumph.
>Yumi Zouma – Yumi Zouma 10” (Cascine)
Gentle guitar notes nestle amongst broken-beat drum patterns to create a subtle backdrop for lush and exploring female vocals.
>Ásgeir – In The Silence CD (One Little Indian)
US debut for the rising Icelandic folk/electronica artist. “Despite being a ‘singer/songwriter’ album, In The Silence certainly doesn’t lack variety from an instrumental perspective -- ‘Torrent’ matches its emotional lyrics with a brash rock sensibility, making it the most immediate-sounding track on the record, while ‘King And Cross’ is more akin to Alt-J with its humming bass and aquatic synths. ‘In The Silence’ comes across like a more chilled out Of Monsters And Men, and the stark, minimal ‘Going Home’ calls to mind James Blake.” – Drowned In Sound
>Nicole Atkins – Slow Phaser CD/LP (Oh Mercy! Records)
A neon noir tour de force of hi-def late-night pop, Slow Phaser marks Nicole Atkins' most ingenious and indelibly modern collection to date. Produced by Tore Johannson -- with whom she partnered on her now-classic 2007 debut, Neptune City -- the album is a milestone for the acclaimed singer/songwriter, her restless creativity fully realized via the addition of some surprising colors to her already diverse pallet.
>Atomic Ape – Swarm CD (Web Of Mimicry)
Here’s some good news for fans of meticulously crafted instrumental music and records with major production efforts behind them: The Web Of Mimicry artist(s) formerly known as Orange Tulip Conspiracy have returned with a new lineup, a new sound, a new name, and most exciting of all, a new album called Swarm, which features a massive cast of 25 musicians, including: Trey Spruance, Eyvind Kang, Tim Young, Devin Hoff, Jessika Kenney, Dave Abramson, Timb Harris, Steve Moore and other heavy luminaries like Joe Doria, Danny Frankel and Mike Stone.
>Augustines – Augustines CD/LP (Votiv/Oxcart)
Augustines was born upon the ashes of the Brooklyn indie rock band, Pela. That combo called an end to its collective trip in 2009, but founders McCarthy and Sanderson reunited to record a series of deeply personal songs chronicling despair, depression, and the untimely death of a close family member. They dubbed their intimate new endeavor, Augustines, which trademark issues required be appended to We Are Augustines.
>Ausmuteants - Amusements CD (Agitated/Aarght!)
Ausmuteants are four twenty-nothings from Geelong, Victoria raised on a diet of seminal avant-punk like Chrome, the Screamers, and letʼs not mention Devo.
>Behemoth – The Satanist CD (Metal Blade)
The Satanist is the 10th studio album from the Polish blackened death metal band. The cover art was painted by renowned Russian painter and occultist Denis Forkas.
>Big Head Todd & The Monsters – Black Beehive CD (Shout Factory!)
"[T]his blues-infused album may be the strongest affirmation of the band's roots. From the gritty album-opening growlers of ‘Hey Delila’ and ‘Everything About You,’ to the folk/country blues of ‘Travelin' Light’ and ‘Forever Bonnie,’ the group shows commitment to the form. … We all know that the blues had a baby called rock & roll. Big Head Todd & The Monsters make it so." -- Relix
>Scott H. Biram - Nothin' But Blood CD/LP (Bloodshot)
What in the past has been expressed through reeling irreverence and spirit-lifting profanity (which Biram’s still got in spades; don’t worry) is here a more penetrating, and chilling, version of The Dirty Old One Man Band self-examining and penitent, yet still as crazy as a jack-eyed preacher. On his ninth album (and fifth for Bloodshot Records) blood is many, often inherently contradictory, themes: life, death, suffering, evil, commitment, legacy, atonement. “With a raw immediacy that recalls Hasil Adkins and Bob Log III, Biram specializes in a twisted hybrid of gutbucket, hillbilly and godless metal. He'll praise the virtues of moonshine and titty bars one minute, then tongue-lash city slickers and hippies the next.” -- Houston Press
>The Bixby Knolls – Near & Undear CD/LP (El Camino Media, LLC)
Powered by fuzz-driven sonics, heart-stomping rhythms and soul-awakening anthems and melodies, 'The Knolls' do not go unnoticed for those that witness their aural craft whether it be played from a phonograph or the stage. The four-piece collective shine a different light on the 'indie' sound and give hope to the survival of guitar driven pop.
>Michael Bloomfield - From His Head To His Heart To His Hands 3xCD+DVD (Sony Legacy)
Guitarist Mike Bloomfield never fully got his due as one of the go-to sidemen of his generation or for his importance as a common thread in the patchwork of genres that changed the face of rock & roll in the ‘60s and ‘70s. This multi-disc anthology features released and unreleased gems from solo sessions to live performances from The Fillmore East and Fillmore West, The Bottom Line and other historic venues. The compilation also features a fascinating new mini-documentary combining vintage audio interviews with Bloomfield and live performances with new reflections from his friends, collaborators and admirers.
>Bombay Bicycle Club – So Long, See You Tomorrow CD (Vagrant)
“So Long, See You Tomorrow is all about the beats, you see. It’s probably a smart move, what with guitar music being declared dead every three weeks by those music-typing folk. Lead single ‘Carry Me’ makes you all nostalgic for a summer yet to be experienced, one filed with exotic fruits, awkward romance and questionable Hawaiian shirts. It’s the type of music you’d hear at Ibiza Rocks, not that I really know what type of music you’d hear at Ibiza Rocks.” – Drowned In Sound
>Toni Braxton & Babyface – Love, Marriage & Divorce CD (10 Spot)
With an all-time total of 16 Grammy Awards between them, multi-platinum superstars Toni Braxton and Kenny 'Babyface' Edmonds have finally teamed up for their first album of duets.
>Broken Bells – After The Disco CD/LP+MP3 (Columbia)
Sophomore album from the musical partnership comprised of Brian Burton (Danger Mouse) and James Mercer (The Shins). Features the first single. "Holding On To Life. Vinyl pressed on HQ-180gm with download.
>Brotherhood – The Complete Recordings 2xCD (Real Gone Music)
Right at the height of popularity for Paul Revere & The Raiders, the band’s core power trio of Phil Volk (bass), Drake Levin (guitar) and Mike (Smitty) Smith (drums) left to pursue their own more ambitious musical goals. Subsequent lawsuits and a run of bad luck meant that the first, self-titled album by their new band, Brotherhood, would be delayed, and received little notice at the time. Yet, by mixing a wealth of socially conscious original numbers with hard-rocking reinterpretations of tunes by the Mamas And The Papas and Joe South, Brotherhood was a band brimming with promise.
>The John Butler Trio – Flesh + Blood CD (Vanguard)
Aussie roots virtuoso John Butler is known for his masterful lap-steel talent, as well as his unusual preference for playing acoustic guitars through a variety of pedals and distorted Marshall amps. But when it comes to the playing of stringed instruments, he virtually does it all, and extremely well at that, with a rare air of originality. Vinyl version due March 4.
>Caliban – Ghost Empire CD (Century Media)
Ninth album from the German metalcore quintet.
>Chain Gang Of 1974 – Daydream Forever CD (WB)
The Chain Gang Of 1974 is the moniker of multi-instrumentalist and DJ Kamtin Mohager’s alternative dance music project. Born in San Jose and raised in Hawaii and later Denver, Mohager’s first passion was hockey, but after hearing Tears For Fears’ “Everybody Wants To Rule The World” in the movie Real Genius, the teenager was inspired to play music. The project’s name references The Raveonettes album title The Chain Gang Of Love, and the birth year of another of his favorite musicians, Ryan Adams. After playing bass on tour with 3OH!3 from 2007 through 2010, Mohager launched the Chain Gang Of 1974.
>Les Claypool’s Duo De Twang – Four Foot Shack CD/LP (ATO)
Four Foot Shack contains 15 songs that mix originals from Claypool's many projects with covers such as “Man In The Box']” by Alice In Chains and “Stayin' Alive” by the Bee Gees. The album features just Les and MIRV outside of a cameo from Claypool's son on banjo.
>Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe – New Ammo CD (Stoopid Records)
New album acclaimed jazz/funk saxophonist and his seven-piece backing band. Denson is also known as a founder and integral member of The Greboy Allstars. New Ammo is the long-awaited follow-up to their 2009 album Brother's Keeper. Always a formidable unit, the band is bolstered by the doubling of its already raucous horn frontline, and an invigorated orchestral approach inspired by the gritty, funk-fueled soundtracks of ‘70s cinema.
>Diamond Youth – Shake CDEP/12” (Topshelf)
Melodic '90s-influenced rock band Diamond Youth formed in 2010 around vocalist/guitarist Justin Gilman, guitarist Sam Trapkin, bassist Daniel Fang, and drummer Brendan Yates.
>The Dream Syndicate – The Day Before Wine And Roses: Live At KPFK, September 5, 1982 [Reissue/1995] CD (Omnivore)
A few weeks before The Dream Syndicate entered the studio to record their seminal The Days Of Wine And Roses album, they set up in Studio ZZZZ at KPFK in Los Angeles for a live set. In attendance were members of R.E.M., the Bangles and Green On Red. The session documents the genesis of one of the most important pieces of the Paisley Underground puzzle. The band began playing at 2AM according to Wynn's liner notes, and that could not have been a more perfect time for the ethereal sounds of this highly influential band.
>Exmortus – Slave To The Sword CD (Prosthetic)
Exmortus are an entity amongst themselves, and their music -- both complex and thoroughly hook-laden -- refuses to lend itself to easy categorization. From the technical death/thrash riffage and surgically precise drumming to their neo-classical, twin virtuoso lead guitar attack, fans of death metal, thrash, prog metal, traditional heavy metal and all true metal sub-genres alike enjoy having their craniums crushed by the fury of Exmortus. Vinyl version due February 11.
>For Today – Fight The Silence CD/LP (Razor & Tie )
For Today returns with a strong social message on their new album, Fight The Silence. On its first single of the same name, the album helps to shine a light on the issue of human trafficking; an issue that re-introduces the band at their most personal and perhaps most passionate.
>Gardens & Villa – Dunes CD/LP (Secretly Canadian)
Gardens & Villa found themselves in the unlikely locale of Benton Harbor, MI in the middle of winter to record their second full-length, Dunes. With the aid of Sly Stone's custom Flickinger recording console, acclaimed producer Tim Goldsworthy (Cut Copy, DFA Records, LCD Soundsystem, Hercules & The Love Affair) guided Gardens & Villa until they ultimately emerged with a record beaming with dystopian energy, subconscious lyrics, and uncompromising sincerity.
>Grand Magus – Triumph & Power CD (Nuclear Blast)
Grand Magus is a special band: While tradition is very important to them, they still have the courage to develop their music. Stylistically, they may have come a long way from their dusty self-titled rock debut to their new metal masterpiece Hammer Of The North, but the Stockholm trio has evolved without losing touch with their experiences. They have never abandoned the driving groove of their early years or their love of epic doom and extreme metal.
>Tord Gustavsen Quartet – Extended Circle CD (ECM)
Gustvasen’s quartet with Tore Brunborg, Mats Eilertsen and long-term associate Jarle Vespestad has matured into a group whose interactions draw strength from restraint, patiently building the music toward its climaxes. Here are new gospel-tinged pieces and ballads from Tord’s pen, gentle and luminescent group improvisations, and an ecstatic interpretation of the Norwegian traditional “Eg Veit I Himmerik Ei Borg (I Know A Castle In Heaven).”
>Hand – The Other Side Of The World CD/LP (Golden Pavillion)
The Swiss/American progressive rock band’s first new album in decades. Their current sound reflects the band's roots in American rock and folk music, and finds its place within the thriving context of Americana music currently in great demand. Her new EP features the single “She Keeps Me Warm” and the incredible spoken-word anthem “Body Love.”
>The High Kings – Friends For Life CD (Sony Classics)
Friends For Life, the new album from The High Kings, features twelve irresistible tracks, including two original songs by the group, that showcase the brilliant instrumental and vocal talents of these four Irish musicians. Ireland's Folk Band of the Year for the last four years, The High Kings have an accomplished musical pedigree, playing 13 instruments between them.
>Jucifer - за волгой для нас земли нет (There Is No Land Beyond The Volga) CD (MRI)
Released last year on vinyl – now available on CD. With their eighth full-length album, nomadic sludge death-drone duo Jucifer channels the soul/soil of a place called Volgograd into an hour and seventeen minutes of music as storied and powerful as the land and people to which they have dedicated this latest offering. Sonic S&M for the modern, corroded soul; untouchable epithets of beauty; grim odes to all that’s heavy.
>Marsen Jules – Beautyfear CD (Oktaf)
Cloudy soundscapes which at some points remind of Angelo Badalamenti's work for David Lynch's Mulholland Drive.
>Mary Lambert – Welcome To The Age Of My Body CDEP (Capitol)
Mary Lambert is a Seattle, Washington-based singer/songwriter/poet/composer/spoken-word artist. She has been nominated for two Grammy Awards including Song of the Year for "Same Love" and Album of the Year for The Heist.
>Little Mix – Salute CD (Columbia)
Sophomore album from the British Girl Group. Little Mix are a quartet formed in 2011, consisting of members Perrie Edwards, Jesy Nelson, Leigh-Anne Pinnock, and Jade Thirlwall. They were formed exclusively for the eighth series of The X Factor, where they became the first group entry to win in the program's eight-year history. Available in Regular and Deluxe editions. Deluxe adds four bonus tracks.
>Mark McGuire – Along The Way CD/2xLP (Dead Oceans)
New album from the Emeralds guitarist/producer. Along The Way details the inner journey of an individual seeking definition and enlightenment. For those following McGuire's musical ascent thus far, the record is a culmination of a prodigious and prolific artist. Available on CD and on green vinyl.
>Jeremy Messersmith – Heart Murmers CD/LP (Glassnote)
Heart Murmers is the fifth album from the Minneapolis-based indie singer/songwriter, and is the follow-up to his 2012 album Paper Moon. Features the single “Tourniquet.” “Imagine Elliott Smith driving in a convertible, the wind flying through his hair, singing about sadness & somehow creating joy enough to forget his troubles for a while.” - The Onion
>Pat Metheny – Kin () CD/2xLP+CD (Nonesuch)
In 2012, for the first time since 1980, guitarist Pat Metheny recorded with a band that highlighted tenor saxophone. Unity Band, which went on to win Metheny his 20th Grammy Award, featured Chris Potter on sax and bass clarinet, longtime collaborator Antonio Sanchez on drums, and Ben Williams on bass. Metheny added another musician, multi-instrumentalist Giulio Carmassi, and christened the ensemble Pat Metheny Unity Group. Their first record is Kin ().
>Moonshine Bandits – Calicountry CD (Average Joe’s Entertainment)
The Moonshine Bandits' new album was executive produced by none other than country superstar Colt Ford and Average Joe’s CEO Shannon Houchins. Calicountry features guest appearances from The Lacs, Colt Ford, Big B, Danny Boone from Rehab, Durwood Black, and American Idol finalist Sarah Ross.
>Musi-O-Tunya – Give Love To Your Children CD/2xLP+MP3 (Now Again)
Mid-‘70s funk, psych-rock, and fuzz-guitar-lead Afrobeat from Zambia's groundbreaking band.
>Marissa Nadler – July CD/LP (Sacred Bones)
Recorded at Seattle’s Avast Studio, July pairs Nadler for the first time with producer Randall Dunn (Earth, Sunn O))), Wolves In The Throne Room). Dunn matches Nadler’s darkness by creating a multi-colored sonic palette that infuses new dimensions into her songs. Eyvind Kang’s strings, Steve Moore’s synths, and Phil Wandscher’s guitar lines escalate the whole affair to a panoramic level of beautiful, eerie wonder. July is the kind of release that reminds you why NPR counts Nadler s songwriting as so “revered among an assortment of tastemakers.”
>Shirley Nanette – Never Coming Back CD/2xLP (Truth & Soul)
In the early ‘70s, Hank Swarn and Shirley Nanette collaborated on a project called Never Coming Back. Swarn had been on the road for five years, lending his guitar-backing talent to Earl Grant and his band. While on tour, he wrote some tunes that were ultimately released on the album. Al Nanette approached Hank about putting together a record with Shirley, who was also keen on getting in the studio. Luckily, Swarn already had songs to bring to the session. With the support some talented local musicians, the album was recorded mostly in one or two takes in a little over a week.
>Orange Juice – You Can’t Hide Your Love Forever [Reissue/1982] CD (Domino)
Orange Juice – Rip It Up [Reissue/1982] CD (Domino)
Orange Juice – Texas Fever [Reissue/1984] CD (Domino)
Orange Juice – The Orange Juice [Reissue/1984] CD (Domino)
“The leaders of the Scottish neo-pop uprising Orange Juice formed in Glasgow in late 1976. Originally dubbed the Nu-Sonics, the group comprised vocalist/guitarist Edwyn Collins, guitarist James Kirk, bassist David McClymont, and drummer Steven Daly; following the formation of the Postcard label by Collins protégé Alan Horne, the quartet renamed itself Orange Juice in 1979, adopting the new moniker as well as an aura of romantic innocence as a direct reaction to the increasingly macho aggression of punk” – AllMusic. Vinyl versions due February 11.
>Eric Paslay – Eric Paslay CD (Universal Nashville)
Paslay’s debut album features his Top 15 hit single “Friday Night” which has been featured in weekly ESPN College Football Friday Primetime broadcasts last fall.
>Quicksilver Messenger Service – Fillmore Auditorium November 5, 1966 CD/2xLP (Cleopatra)
One of the earliest live performances ever recorded by these icons of the San Francisco music scene.
>Paul Roders – The Royal Sessions CD/LP (429)
New collection of classic R&B and soul songs re-imagined by the Bad Company singer/songwriter. Available on CD and on HQ-200gm audiophile vinyl.
>Janek Schaefer – Lay-By Lullaby CD (12k)
The latest offering from the turntablist/collage/electronic artist extraordinaire weaves location recordings, made in the middle of the night above the M3 motorway, around a series of spacious sonorities, that shimmer with analogue textures and liminal melodies that burnout in the passing headlights.
>Smith – A Group Called Smith/Minus-Plus [Reissue/1969] CD (Real Gone)
Smith were discovered in an L.A. nightclub by none other than Del Shannon, who got them signed to ABC-Dunhill and arranged their smash hit cover of “Baby, Its You.” They also boasted one of the best albeit largely unknown female singers of the ‘60s in the person of Gayle McCormick, who, with her blonde good looks and powerful, bluesy voice, seemed destined to lead Smith to big things (she did go on to record a series of solo albums for Dunhill). However, the band broke up after these two albums, and while the first album was reissued on a long out-of-print (and now very expensive) CD, the second album has never been reissued in any format until now.
>The Smoking Hearts – Victory! CD (Bullet Tooth)
Playing with the likes of The Used, Asking Alexandria, Bullet For My Valentine, Gallows, Andrew WK, and many more, The Smoking Hearts have cemented their reputation as one of the most exciting young bands in the U.K.
>Snowbird – Moon CD (Bella Union)
“The creative union of former Cocteau Twin and current Bella Union label boss Simon Raymonde and Wisconsin-born singer/songwriter Stephanie Dosen was always likely to give birth to something of beauty. In that respect, Moon fully lives up to its billing. Under the name Snowbird, the duo has crafted an intricate set of graceful songs that simply glide off Raymonde’s piano and Dosen’s tongue. As sensual as it is enigmatic, the album is a product of a long-distance nighttime liaison between the pair, with Raymonde laying down instrumental tracks after sundown to send to the North Carolina-based Dosen, who would improvise vocals over them and post the results back to London.” – Consequence Of Sound
>Soundtrack – Toomorrow [From The Harry Saltzman, Don Kirshner Film] CD (Real Gone Music)
Original soundtrack to the 1970 sci-fi musical. Long before she was Sandy, the good girl of Rydell High, or Kira, the Olympian muse of the roller disco Xanadu, Olivia Newton-John was just plain Livvy, the girl singer with dreams of the big time in the 1970 sci-fi movie musical Toomorrow.
>Ruben Studdard – Unconditional Love CD (Verve)
Unconditional Love is filled with some of the most romantic songs Studdard has ever recorded including "My Love" by Paul McCartney and Wings, The Carpenters classic, "They Long To Be (Close To You)" which includes Stevie Wonder on harmonica and Bonnie Raitt's poignant, "I Can't Make You Love Me". Additional tracks include a steamy version of Teddy Pendegrass' "Close The Door" which was produced by singer Eric Benet who also produced Studdard's breathtaking version of the Boz Scaggs hit "Love, Look What You've Done To Me". The album also contains a soaring duet with Lalah Hathaway of "With You I'm Born Again" which was originally recorded by Syreeta Wright and Billy Preston.
>Sunn O))) & Ulver – Terrestrials CD (Southern Lord)
New collaboration between two of the most respected avant-metal bands in the underground. Three movements which are fluid like the flow of magma beneath the Earth's crust, sonically uninhibited, unpredictably cosmic, haunting and stirring yet simultaneously ceremonious and beautiful.
>The Tower Of Light – The Tower Of Light CD/LP+MP3 (Felte)
Beaming its sleepwalking sound from a bedroom in Brooklyn, The Tower Of Light deals in the marriage of polarities on his self-titled debut album. At once delicate and severe, ecstatic then pensive, both sparse and lush, it follows a road that was paved by the early days of 4AD and its strange, beautiful diversity, while making unexpected stylistic detours as it winds its way through the ether.
>The Traps – Boom Pow Awesome Wow CD/LP (Castle Face)
Another grimy bit of gold from the vaults; “homemade” music from Providence, RI to irk your co-workers with. When you hear the word “garage,” does it make you want to leave the room? I can relate. Beaten over the head, we’ve been. The horse that was once merely dead is now paste on the linoleum. Garage songs sell cars. Needless to say, The Traps would be last on the list for ad men’s fancy. Sometimes you see or hear something that is so completely the raw ingredient of what was once great in your life that it stands out…or in this case, hunches over with a thread of saliva from its chin to its knee.
>Tony Trischka – Great Big World CD (Rounder)
Tony Trischka is one of the leading lights of contemporary banjo. His innovations have inspired players like Bela Fleck and myriad others, helping to define the dynamic banjo stylings of today. With a formidable range from traditional pieces through contemporary experimentation, Great Big World encompasses the generous world of Tony Trischka's music his sterling banjo, and his extraordinary original tunes.
>Troyka – Troyka [Reissue/1970] CD (Real Gone Music)
One could say that Troykas self-titled 1970 Cotillion album came out of left field, but that wouldn’t quite do it justice. It really belongs on its own planet. Though there are strong elements of hard rock and psych that have made it a favorite among collectors, Troyka’s mad concoction also stirs in elements of folk, traditional Ukrainian music, Polish spoken-word bits, prog, and even funk.
>Various Artists - Let No One Judge You: Early Recordings From Iran, 1906-1933 2xCD (Honest Jon’s)
Ravishingly beautiful, achingly precious songs and instrumentals, ranging from two performances by the Royal Court Orchestra in 1906 — with futuristic, overlapping trumpets and exquisite clarinet improvisation — through to a hauntingly soulful Hafez setting by Moluk Zarrabi of Kashan, from 1933.
>Various Artists - Optimo (Espacio): Dark Was The Night CD (Endless Flight)
Compilation featuring music dedicated to the same spirit of human identity as the records launched into space with the Voyager spacecraft in 1977. Includes tracks from Grouper, Nurse With Wound, The Freeze, and more.
>Various Artists – Pop Ambient 2014 CD/LP+CD (Kompakt)
Kompakt’s annual foray into the lighter side of their otherwise friskier electronica/dance-leaning roster features new tracks by Ulf Lohmann, Thomas Fehlmann, Mikkel Metal, Marsen Jules, Cologne Tape, Simon Scott, The Bionaut, Wolfgang Voight, and The Field.
>Various Artists – This Is The Town (A Tribute To Nilsson Volume 1) CD/LP (The Royal Potato Family)
This Is The Town: A Tribute to Nilsson (Volume 1) is a 20-track collection that celebrates the artistry of legendary singer-songwriter Harry Nilsson. The set features a diverse gathering of young artists performing songs that span the breadth of Nilsson’s repertoire, including “Early In The Morning” by Langhorne Slim, “Jump Into The Fire” by Low Cut Connie, “Are You Sleeping” by Marco Benevento, “Rainmaker” by Yellowbirds, “Think About Your Troubles” by Willy Mason and “Everybody’s Talkin’” by Tracy Bonham. Harry’s daughter Annie Nilsson contributes a rendition of “Gotta Get Up,” along with the original illustrations that serve as the album’s artwork.
>Water Liars –Water Liars CD/LP (Fat Possum)
The Mississippi rockers self-titled follow-up to last year’s Wyoming “is a record about trying to live and love and earn a living in times and places that don’t make it easy on anybody,” says frontman Justin Kinkel-Schuster. “It’s about trying to handle the bad times that nobody escapes and take care of the good times as long as they last. It’s us trying to tell about the outskirts of America that we’ve seen, lived through and live in, and get it right, for once if not for all.”
>Juan Wauters – N.A.P. North American Poetry CD/LP (Captured Tracks)
On his debut solo record, N.A.P. North-American Poetry, Wauters dreams big; coming into his own as a singer. Building on his songwriting, popularized by The Beets, Juan presents introspective tracks, like "Water" and "Sanity," and reflections on humans' relationship with technology in songs like "Breathing" which features Carmelle Safdie. The record is completed, as always, by the artwork of dear friend and longtime collaborator Matthew Volz, who has honed the trademark visual aesthetic of Juan's music. This album is a selection of recordings made between the fall of 2010 and the summer of 2012 at Marlborough Farms. N.A.P. delivers a fresh sound and lyrical candor from one of Queens' most idiosyncratic adoptive sons.
>Whiskey Myers – Early Morning Shakes CD (Wiggy Thump)
Whiskey Myers makes honest music. Loud and proud, they sing about what they know with a refreshing directness and clarity. Some call it rebel music, but it’s more like everyday soul. Their songs are stories, with relatable characters and situations. Stories of celebration, of mourning, of trials and triumph. Vinyl version due February 11.
>Wild Moccasins – 88 92 CD/LP (New West)
The new album from Houston-based quintet blends the co-ed fronted band’s indie rock styling with a modern take on new wave and disco. Bringing to mind bands like Blondie and Talking Heads, 88 92 finds the troupe growing within their sound and polishing their chops with a furious backbeat.
>Within Temptation – Hydra CD/2xCD (Nuclear Blast) Available in Regular and Deluxe editions. Deluxe adds a second disc with bonus songs and covers. Vinyl version due March 4. “This album is about the big things in life and in the world today. It’s dark, and powerful! We still have our symphonic elements, but it’s much faster and heavier than The Unforgiving. It goes in completely different directions – hence the title Hydra, because it represents the different sides of us.” – Guitarist/Songwriter Robert Westerholt
>Erik Wøllo – Timelines CD (Projekt)
Timelines is the 18th solo album from veteran Norwegian ambient/electronic artist Erik Wøllo. It’s a warm, epic and shimmering cycle of memorable electronic music.
>Xiu Xiu – Angel Guts: Red Classroom CD/LP+MP3 (Polyvinyl)
Working with only analog synths, drum set, and 1970's analog drum machines, Xiu Xiu has never before sounded so focused, so captivating, so intent on delivering a kick to the throat. Unbearably dark, yet incredibly illuminating, Angel Guts: Red Classroom is the work of a band unraveling to its core and exposing the boldness within. Available on CD and on HQ-180gm clear vinyl with download.
>+/- (Plus Minus) - Jumping The Tracks LP+MP3 (Teenbeat)
Fifth album from NYC's +/- (and their first in over four years) is a stunning collection of pop songs with their trademark polyrhythmic percussion, glorious harmonies, and innate knack for writing a killer hook.
>Afterhours – Lowlife LP (Not Not Fun)
An unusually elegant hybridized trip-hop sub-species.
>Aztec Camera – High Land, Hard Rain [Reissue/1983] LP+MP3 (Domino)
In his new liner notes for this re-issue, David Fricke calls High Land, Hard Rain "ten songs of anxious yearning, romantic urgency, big hurt and hard-won learning, distilled into compact dramas of buckskin-folk jangle and skewed-pop elegance." We call it the one of the greatest debut albums in the history of rock & roll. Completely remastered from the analog tapes and pressed on HQ-180gm vinyl. CD version due February 18.
>Chrome – Read Only Memory [Reissue/1979] LP (Cleopatra)
A very special reissue of the rare 1979 EP by pioneering art rockers, with fully restored artwork and four bonus live tracks recorded in July of 1981.
>Death Of Lovers - Buried Under A World Of Roses LP (Deathwish)
Death Of Lovers features members of Whirr and Nothing, and their new album is comprised of dreary vocals, slow motion melody, and plodding percussion, which swirl together to create a crushingly depressing atmosphere.
>Depeche Mode – Some Great Reward [Reissue/1984] LP (WB)
Depeche Mode – Black Celebration [Reissue/1986] LP (WB)
Depeche Mode – Music For The Masses [Reissue/1987] LP (WB)
Depeche Mode – Songs Of Faith & Devotion [Reissue/1993] LP (WB)
HQ-180gm vinyl reissues. From the beginning of their career Depeche Mode have been at the forefront of remix culture; creating their own classic extended mixes back in the early ‘80s and over the years amassing a collection of remixers of their songs that pretty much charts the history of cutting edge dance music.
>The Field – Cupid’s Head Remix I 12” (Kompakt)
Remixes for the title track from Cupid's Head by Vatican Shadow, Barker & Baumecker & Sonns.
>Floor – Floor [Standard Edition/Deluxe Edition] LP+7”+MP3 (Robotic Empire)
Like the sound of heaven collapsing, Floor ground to a halt in 2003, leaving in their wake a single proper full-length release—a thunderous, soaring doom / sludge / pop / rock hybrid to which nothing before or after can truly be compared. This brilliant monolith is the stuff of legend, laying the bedrock for what would come years later with Torche. Housed in a beautiful, full-color gatefold LP jacket with silver coverage throughout, this reissue adds a 7” with three outtakes from the album’s recording session, first unearthed for the Below & Beyond discography box set. Available in Standard and Deluxe editions. Deluxe is pressed on color vinyl with expanded notes, a sticker, and a patch.
>Frowning Clouds/Living Eyes - Living Eyes/Frowning Clouds 7” (Agitated)
Excellent scuzz and buzz from the wondrous town of Geelong in Victoria, Australia. A new track from each of these bands: the Frowning Clouds play the almost perfect ‘60s styled pop smothered in a sheen of fuzz, while the Living Eyes dish out a swift one-two knockout with some of their hummable garage styled thwack.
>Future Islands – Seasons 12” (4AD)
The first taste from Singles, the Baltimore band's forthcoming 4AD debut (due March 25) includes the non-album B-side “One Day.”
>Gazpacho – Tick Tock  2xLP (K-scope)
The Norwegian band Gazpacho has been described by one critic as "classical post ambient nocturnal atmospheric folk world rock." Difficult to pigeonhole, the influence of bands like Radiohead, Muse, Marillion, Talk Talk and Porcupine Tree are evident. So it makes sense that K-scope is making their 2009 album available on vinyl for the first time.
>Hard Working Americans – Hard Working Americans LP (Melvin Records)
Recently released on CD – now available on vinyl. Debut album from this 'supergroup' consisting of Todd Snider (vox), Dave Schools of Widespread Panic (bass), Neal Casal of The Chris Robinson Brotherhood (guitars/vox), Chad Staehly of Great American Taxi (keys) and Duane Trucks of King Lincoln and of the Trucks family lineage (drums). Hard Working Americans features 11 tracks written by a range of artists that include Randy Newman, Lucinda Williams, Kevin Gordon, Hayes Carll, Kevn Kinney (Drivin' `N Cryin'), Gillian Welch & Dave Rawlings, Brian Henneman (The Bottle Rockets), Will Kimbrough, Tommy Womack, Kieran Kane, Chuck Mead (BR5-49), Don Herron and Frankie Miller (Elizabeth Cook). Special guests include John Popper and John Keane.
>Have A Nice Life – The Unnatural World LP (The Flenser)
Fans of Connecticut's post-industrial doomgaze two-piece Have A Nice Life have been restlessly awaiting the band's second gloom fueled auto-biographical meditation and The Flenser is pleased to present The Unnatural World.
>Helm – Impasse LP (New Images)
Impasse appears as somewhat of an anomaly in the Helm canon when viewed alongside recent live performances and his work for labels like Pan and Kye. Where other works explore the mystery inherent in everyday sounds and acoustic phenomena, the album is significantly brighter in tone. Consisting of four loop-based pieces, the record invokes the same fantastic worlds found in Terry Riley’s or Boyd Rice’s early ambient pieces.
>Hysterics – Can’t I Live 7” (M’Lady’s)
Six new soon-to-be-classics for the radical punk canon.
>Johnny Noise – Day Is Coming LP+MP3 (Siltbreeze)
Debut solo album from Los Llamarda guitarist.
>Nashville Pu##y – Up The Dosage 2xLP (SPV)
Recently released on CD – now available on vinyl. Up The Dosage picks up seamlessly where their 2009 release From Hell To Texas left off. And what is more: the quartet's five-year hiatus seems to have done them good -- all the songs sound like they were catapulted into to the public from a fountain of youth, rocking in typical Pu##y style.
>No Means No - In The Fishtank 1 LP (Fishtank)
The very first of the In The Fishtank series from 1996 from punk legends No Means No is finally available on vinyl for the first time. Comes with updated/new artwork, too.
>Orchid – Capricorn: The Zodiac Sessions 2xLP (Nuclear Blast America)
The Zodiac Sessions consists of the metal band's early works – 2009's Through The Devil's Doorway EP as well as the debut full-length Capricorn (2011). HQ-180gm vinyl in gatefold sleeve with poster. Side D is etched.
>Peace Creep – Peace Creep 12” (Alternative Tentacles)
Drawing equally on Hüsker Dü, Superchunk, Dinosaur Jr and Breeders, as well as their own heavier musical history including Bottles and Skulls and Pins Of Light, Peace Creep obliterates the stage, spilling over their instruments like a house party out of control. The group’s sound nods at their hardcore influences, while incorporating elements ranging from psychedelic to noise.
>Prolife – Overheated b/w Gold Leaves 7” (Sacred Bones)
Debut 7” from new group featuring members of Slug Guts.
>Pye Corner Audio – Black Mill Tapes 3 & 4 2xLP (Type)
Recommended for fans of: Boards of Canada, Ghost Box, Mordant Music, Ekoplekz, & the BBC Radiophonic Workshop. (A CD version collecting all four volumes is due February 14.)
>Sceptres – Childsplay 7” (Dire)
British post-punk with weirdo guitar floating through a dark atmosphere marked by brooding melodies. Raw, moody, and intriguing.
>Shoes This High - Straight To Hell LP+MP3 (Siltbreeze)
While Shoes This High’s existence was a mere glint in the eye of Father Time (a year or more, tops), they made every second count, stalking the New Zealand post-punk landscape—both North and South islands—with ravenous abandon. For most fans, their legend and reputation rest solely on the strength of one highly formidable (and collectable) self-released 7” EP from 1981. For Straight To Hell, Siltbreeze tapped into the massive tape library of famed New Zealand underground music archivist Bob Sutton, who had in his possession a white-hot live scorcher of the group, culled from a set that went down at the infamous Billy The Club way back when.
>Various Artists – The 78 Project: Volume 1 LP (The 78 Project)
The 78 Project is a documentary journey across America that records today’s musicians as they perform the songs that inspired a century of music—exactly as those works were originally recorded: instantaneously onto 78 RPM lacquer discs. Inspired by folklorist Alan Lomax, The 78 Project celebrates the artistry and craft that captured America’s musical forms of a century ago, exploring the deep historical significance of American folk songs in the process. With just one microphone, one authentic 1930s Presto recorder, and one blank acetate disc, musicians are given a single, three-minute take to cut a 78 RPM record, finding in that adventure a new connection to our cultural legacy. Includes tracks by Richard Thompson, Loudon Wainwright III, Rosanne Cash, Marshall Crenshaw, Valerie June, John Henry, Vandaveer, and more.
>Young The Giant – Mind Over Matter 2xLP+MP3 (Fueled By Ramen)
Recently released on CD – now available on vinyl. For their highly anticipated second album Mind Over Matter, Young The Giant enlisted Grammy nominated producer Justin Meldal-Johnsen, known for his work with such diverse artists as Beck, Nine Inch Nails, Paramore, and M83. Featuring the electrifying lead single "It's About Time," the collection of songs finds the young band challenging themselves both lyrically and musically.