Rock & Pop
In the three decades since first convening at the University of Massachusetts, Buffalo Tomsinger-guitarist Bill Janovitz, bassist-vocalist Chris Colbourn and drummer Tom Maginnishave built a formidable body of work. Having first made its mark with a raw, raucous approach that put the band at the forefront of the '90s alt-rock explosion, the intrepid trio has consistently revealed new layers of musical and emotional depth, as manifested in the bittersweet ballads, soul-searching songcraft and rousing rock tunes that make up the new album Quiet and Peace. The consistently compelling 11-song set (on the band's own Scrawny label, in association with Schoolkids Records) finds the band simultaneously mining their best-known sonic elements while breaking new ground on emotionally resonant new tunes such as "All Be Gone," "Overtime," "Roman Cars," "Freckles" and "CatVMouse.
The New Abnormal is the long awaited new album from The Strokes, and the band’s first album in seven years. The album was announced with the first track and video, “At The Door.”
The New Abnormal is The Strokes’ sixth studio album and was recorded at Shangri-La Studios in Malibu, California, with producer Rick Rubin. The album’s cover artwork is a painting called ‘Bird on Money,’ by famed artist Jean-Michel Basquiat.
The Strokes are singer Julian Casablancas, guitarists Nick Valensi and Albert Hammond Jr, bassist Nikolai Fraiture and drummer Fabrizio Moretti.
'The man singing these songs isn't exactly the same man who wrote them,' says Pokey LaFarge of Rock Bottom Rhapsody, his eighth and latest studio release. 'This album is about the story of who I used to be.' In early 2018, LaFarge ' searching for the sort of artistic freedom and inspiration he wasn't finding in the Midwest ' relocated from his longtime home base of St. Louis, Missouri, to Los Angeles, California. New songs came quickly to LaFarge in his new environment, but new temptations soon found him, as well. Though he declines to get into specifics, LaFarge admits that he experienced a significant 'fall from grace' during the last months of 2018. 'Things sort of started to unravel in my mind,' Shortly before the recording of Rock Bottom Rhapsody began, LaFarge experienced a spiritual awakening ' and the faith he re-embraced in his hour of darkness helped to buoy him through the making of the album. Though he was struggling for spiritual equilibrium at the time, LaFarge at least had some rock-solid musical support to lean on. Recorded primarily at Reliable Recorders on Chicago's Northwest side, Rock Bottom Rhapsody was produced by LaFarge's friend and collaborator Chris Seefried (who also co-wrote several of the album's tracks), and features the considerable talents of guitarist Joel Paterson, keyboardist Scott Ligon, upright/electric bassist Jimmy Sutton, and drummer Alex Hall. Musically, LaFarge continues to mix and match a wide variety of styles and traditions, while never losing track of his own vision This record is kind of like Roy Orbison and Bob Dylan hanging out with chanson singers and French jazz bands in like the forties, but I was never trying to make it sound like a particular person. Despite the trying period that preceded its recording, Rock Bottom Rhapsody is ultimately far more uplifting and life-affirming than its title would suggest. 'That desperation, that struggle,' LaFarge ponders, 'Did it add something to the record? It certainly did. I mean, I don't know if it made it better; it just is what it is. It's not up to me to decide if people are going to feel that'
On November 29, 2002, one year after the passing of George Harrison, Olivia Harrison and longtime friend Eric Clapton organized a performance tribute in his honor. Held at London’s Royal Albert Hall, the momentous evening featured George’s songs, and music he loved, performed by a lineup that included Clapton, Jeff Lynne, Paul McCartney, Tom Petty, Monty Python, Billy Preston, Jools Holland, Ravi and Anoushka Shankar, Joe Brown, Ringo Starr, Dhani Harrison and many more. In honor of George Harrison’s 75th birthday (February 25), the Grammy®-winning release CONCERT FOR GEORGE, will be available for the first time on vinyl, released as a 4-LP Box Set, as well as well as new CD/DVD and CD/Blu-ray combo configurations.
Known as singer/guitarist of The Gaslight Anthem, as well as The Horrible Crowes, Brian Fallon to release his sophomore solo album, Sleepwalkers, on 2/9/18 via Island Records. Fallon will launch an extensive run of 2018 European and North American tour dates with his backing band, The Horrible Crowes to support the album's launch. Current single, 'Forget Me Not,' is building at Alternative, Triple A, and Active Rock radio.
"It was in winter 18/19 - I flew to Montreal to meet with Tim Kingsbury, Richard Reed Parry, Craig Silvey and Teddy Impakt at Le Studio Du Arcade Fire. It was a fine time with a dream team in a city I love. Winter in beautiful Quebec. Les semaines les plus froides de ma vie. I had a bunch of demos that were inspired by migration stories I had heard from friends or read in newspapers while on tour in Europe and North America. I remember being struck by the similarities of the stories I heard from both continents and how really only the names of the powerful and the powerless had changed - thinking, "Is this the future? Is this our future?"Some time went by, the stories wove together and I remember them now closer to characters in a dream of how people could treat each other than any kind of front-page news realism. I think music subconsciously - whether writing or listening - is a filter for me - helping to process all the bad news into something new to build from - some records to me are like self-fulfilling prophecies - visualizing change to wish something into being - those records inspired this one." - M. Ward
Single LP on black vinyl in gatefold sleeve with printed inner sleeve. Includes coupon for full download.
After the shocking, and for many, demoralizing result of the 2016 election, “I didn’t buy the silver lining some were promoting that ‘well, at least art and music will be great now!’,” says Superchunk co-founder and frontman Mac McCaughan. “Obviously, any sane person would gladly trade four to eight years of terrible music for not having our country dismantled to satisfy the whims of a vengeful child and his enablers.”
That said, good music and art still have a lot to say, and the urgency of current events gave Mac, Laura, Jim, and Jon the momentum to make something new sooner than later. “It would be strange to be in a band, at least our band, and make a record that completely ignored the surrounding circumstances that we live in and that our kids are going to grow up in.” Enter What a Time to Be Alive, Superchunk’s first album in over four years, out February 16, 2018, on Merge Records. It’s a record, says Mac, “about a pretty dire and depressing situation but hopefully not a record that is dire and depressing to listen to.”
2020 live release. Produced by The Monkees' archivist Andrew Sandoval and mixed by Christian Nesmith, The Monkees - The Mike & Micky Show Live was recorded live in March 2019. The collection includes performances of all three of the band's #1 hits: "Last Train To Clarksville," "I'm A Believer" and "Daydream Believer." In addition to those hits, the live album also spotlights many of Nesmith's finest compositions, including several songs that were never performed live during the Monkees' heyday, like "St. Matthew" and "Auntie's Municipal Court." Other Nesmith-penned tunes on the collection include live versions of "The Girl I Knew Somewhere," "Listen To The Band," "Papa Gene's Blues," "You Just May Be The One" and "You Told Me." Dolenz takes the spotlight singing hits like "Pleasant Valley Sunday," "Randy Scouse Git," "Mary, Mary," "Goin' Down," "For Pete's Sake," and "Porpoise Song." The collection also features live versions of "Me & Magdelena" and "Birth Of An Accidental Hipster" from The Monkees' most-recent studio album, Good Times (2016).
2LP – Double Vinyl w/ 3-sides audio and 1-side etched; includes 32-page booklet
Pearl Jam will release their much-anticipated eleventh studio album, Gigaton, on March 27th. It marks the band's first studio album since 2013. "Making this record was a long journey," explains Mike McCready. "It was emotionally dark and confusing at times, but also an exciting and experimental road map to musical redemption." 2020 officially marks 30 years of Pearl Jam performing live, with over 85 million albums sold worldwide and a 2017 induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
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The lead singer of beloved heartland-punk band The Gaslight Anthem, Brian Fallon steps away from that sound and into a stripped-down Americana space on his third solo album, Local Honey. Produced by Grammy-award winning producer Peter Katis (The National, Frightened Rabbit, Death Cab for Cutie), the album showcases Fallon's songwriting in small vignettes, from a loving devotional for his daughter to a vengeful murder ballad.
Single LP on black vinyl in single sleeve with printed inner sleeve. Includes coupon for full download.
Since debuting in 2008, Titus Andronicus has been conditioning faithful listeners to always expect only the unexpected, consistently zigging where others would zag and maintaining a steadfast dedication to fearless ambition. With the March 2 release of the new studio album A Productive Cough on Merge Records, Titus Andronicus has executed the most shocking departure yet—but only if, as ever mercurial singer-songwriter Patrick Stickles insists, “you haven’t been paying attention.”
Lilly Hiatt felt lost. She’d just returned home from the better part of a year on tour in support of her acclaimed third album, Trinity Lane, and, stripped of the daily rituals and direction of life on the road, she found herself alone with her thoughts for the first time in what felt like ages.
So Hiatt did what’s always come most natural to her in times of questioning and uncertainty: she picked up a guitar. Over the course of the ensuing winter, she wrote new music that grappled with her sense of self and place in the world, reckoning with issues that had been bubbling beneath the surface of her subconscious in some cases for years. The result is Walking Proof, Hiatt’s fourth and most probing collection to date. The record walks the line between Hiatt’s rough, rock and roll exterior and her tender, country roots. Lilly Hiatt’s not feeling so lost these days, and with Walking Proof, she’s crafted a roadmap to share with the rest of us.
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A new Belle and Sebastian release is always something to cheer. So three new releases leads to the inevitable conclusion: three cheers! Here is the latest installment in a career that has always pursued a singular and delightful vision of what pop represents and what it can achieve, a career that has seen them triumph against the odds to win a Brit award, be one of the first bands to curate their own festival, and play at the official London residence of the US ambassador (the last president’s ambassador, not the current one’s). Murdoch, as ever, is not the only writer. Sarah Martin (violin/vocals) brought in the delicious ‘The Same Star’, which marries Belle and Sebastian’s melodiousness to a pounding Motown backbeat, and was produced by Leo Abrahams (Ghostpoet, Wild Beasts, Regina Spektor). “We’d met Leo in February of 2016, and I’d say that meeting and the recording of ‘I’ll Be Your Pilot’ were the first tangible steps of this EP project,” Martin says. “We didn’t have a stack of songs to play him, but we liked him and he became a part of the plan from that point - and when I’d got to a point with ‘The Same Star’ where it just needed to be recorded, I thought it could benefit from having a producer to steer things, and fortunately we had a slot in the diary marked ‘Leo’ coming up. It’s not a song we’d laboured over playing for months - it fell together quite quickly thanks in large part to Bob’s [Bobby Kildea, guitarist] enthusiasm and Stuart’s willingness to dismember an old song and repurpose the break, so that it wasn’t just the same three chords over and over and over.” There’s one big reason why 15 songs are coming out on three EPs, rather than one album. “We’d made a couple of LPs, Tigermilk and If You’re Feeling Sinister, within the space of six months,” Murdoch says, remembering the early days of the band’s career, and how that fed into their decision-making this time.
Tesla visited the iconic Abbey Road Studios for a one-night musical event, performing songs from their legendary arsenal including "Love Song" and "What You Give" along with their classic covers of "Signs" and "We Can Work It Out." Additionally, for the first time ever, the band performed the track "California Love Song," from their latest studio album, Shock. The performance was recorded and filmed in 4K HD, bringing forth Tesla's upcoming live album, Five Man London Jam. Available on 2LP.
Cavetown’s major-label debut album, SLEEPYHEAD, due out March 27, 2020, on Sire Records. Recorded, produced, mixed and mastered by Skinner himself in the bedroom of his new London apartment (some things never change), the 11-song collection is set to prove to the world why he’s become not just a cornerstone of the bedroom pop community, but a torchbearer for the next generation of his genre.
By focusing less on the more imperceptible aspects of his productions, Skinner’s distilled his energy on Sleepyhead into what really moves fans: the songs themselves, occasionally lighthearted, largely poignant – but always authentically him. The album is awash in ambient indie-rock nuance, creaking acoustic guitars and Skinner’s poetic lyricism, all steadied by his tranquil melodies and reassuring timbre.
Some 250 million Spotify plays and 1.15 million YouTube subscribers after launching Cavetown, he’s a radically different person than he was just a few years ago. “Basically every aspect of my life has changed since putting out Lemon Boy,” he admits. “Often when change happens, it’s so slow that you don’t notice it. The speed at which it’s happened has made me appreciate everything.”
LP: Black vinyl housed in a die-cut dust sleeve with printed lyrics and credits, all packaged inside a jacket with spot-gloss details. Includes album download.
Hollie Cook combines her unique vocal talent with charming charisma to craft her own dynamic strand of lovers rock with enduring tropical vibes, weaving a path from her West London roots to an arena of diverse collaborations, critically acclaimed records, and iconic live appearances around the world. Cook’s ability to continually surprise, delight, and progress solidifies her position as one of the most exciting voices in reggae, and this is crystal clear on her third full-length and Merge debut, Vessel of Love.
Half Waif Nandi Rose is on her own again, and three songs into her forthcoming album The Caretaker, the singer, songwriter and producer declares her fearlessness: "Baby don't worry about me, I don't worry about you." Here, on "Ordinary Talk," Rose meditates on the heaviness of ordinary moments, the constellation of tears and chores and self-doubt and small talk that comprise being a person, accompanied by her most cinematic, pulsing arrangements to date. It's an apt introduction to The Caretaker, an ax-lbum that negotiates the space between working alone and with others, between isolation and connection. The result is her boldest work yet. Over the course of eleven songs, Rose creates the lush world of a humid summer night, dreaming of and reaching for a season in which she is her "best self."
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The film, 'Viva The Underdogs' features over a decade of behind the scenes personal footage, coupled with unprecedented access to the bands most explosive live tours and world's biggest music festivals. The film gives an incredibly honest and candid look at Parkway Drive's journey; the good-times, battles, triumphs, and sacrifices. "Viva The Underdogs" the album features 14 tracks; 11 of their biggest songs recorded live at the Wacken Open Air Festival in Germany, as well as three of their most popular tracks re-imagined, recorded in German and one with a feature from German Rap artist, Casper.
A triumphant recasting, Franz Ferdinand’s Always Ascending is as exuberant as it is euphoric, bursting with fresh ideas born of what Alex Kapranos calls “aggressive sonic experimentation.” With the help of producer Philippe Zdar (Cassius, Phoenix, Beastie Boys), Kapranos and co. took a knife to their old canvas, producing an album that is so foreign in its familiarity it could only be current. A sound the singer refers to as “simultaneously futuristic and naturalistic.” These are the louche tales of the Parisian night, the exhilaration of an Italian car racing down the autobahn; a feeling of euphoria so pure it could only exist on a knife’s edge. As such, best to press play expecting nothing more than a good time. “I hope that when you listen to it you feel exhilarated,” Kapranos says, “Until you fully absorb the lyrics.”
Devotion, the second album from Margaret Glaspy, is a collection of twelve love songs, reflecting the phases of romance –appreciation and frustration, doubt and adoration. While Glaspy has become known as a skilled guitarist; on Devotion she shifted her songwriting process, building these tracks on computer-based tools like MIDI and Ableton before opening them up on guitar. The result is a new sonic terrain that highlights her vulnerable lyrics and unique emotive vocals.