Coming February 11th: Spoon's tenth album, Lucifer on the Sofa, is alive, vital and inarguably the band's heaviest work to date. The first set of songs that the quintet has put to tape in its hometown, Austin, in more than a decade. Written and recorded over the last two years ' both in and out of shutdown ' these songs feel like a culmination of Spoon's career while marking a shift toward something louder, wilder, and more vivid.
Hunter And The Dog Star is representative of the rock, folk, and jangle pop sound for which Edie Brickell & New Bohemians is known. The band formed in Dallas in the mid-80s and the current line-up consists of original members, Brandon Aly (drums) and John Bradley Houser (bass guitar, woodwinds), Edie Brickell (vocals, guitar), plus John Walter Bush (percussion), and Kenneth Neil Withrow (guitar). Each of the eleven songs on the album were written by various band members, with Edie Brickell writing, "Horse's Mouth"; the album's producer, Kyle Crushman and musician, Matt Hubbard are additional co-writers.
“I’m afraid I’m on the Willie Nelson retirement program, which means I’ll never retire,” promises Jim Heath, sounding every inch a Texan.
By day, Jim Heath is a mild-mannered musical historian well-versed in the birthing days of rock and roll. But when the sun goes down, he straps on his signature Gretsch 6120, steps up to the mike and is transformed into REVEREND HORTON HEAT, a hellfire-spewing, rock and roll dare-demon.
Jim’s tome is iconic: From recording with Lemmy Kilmister, being revered by country music legends like Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins and Screamin’ Jay Hawkins, touring with Soundgarden, ZZ Top, The Cramps, Social Distortion, White Zombie and the Sex Pistols (a young Lydon was connected to Jim’s original 1985 demo), to providing touring opps to upstarts Kyuss, Hank III, Marilyn Manson and countless others across decades on the road.
Heath and longtime confidant and slap-bass general Jimbo Wallace have polished up their 12th release, Whole New Life, which Heath calls “the most positive material I have ever written. It focuses heavily on rock and roll but there is a human interest parallel - songs about growing up poor, vices, marriage, having children and walking the rapturous streets of America.”
Loss and hope, isolation and communion, the cessation and renewal of purpose. These themes echo throughout the fifth album from Midlake, their first since "Antiphon" (2013). Reuniting with intense focus after a long hiatus, the result is "For the Sake of Bethel Woods" - an album with tremendous thematic and sonic reach, produced to layered, loving perfection by John Congleton. It’s a record full of immersive warmth and mystery from a band of ardent seekers, one of our generation’s finest.
Norah Jones’ seventh solo studio album Pick Me Up Off The Floor features collaborators from Brian Blade to Jeff Tweedy, and grew out of her acclaimed singles series of the past 2 years as the songs she hadn’t yet released unexpectedly congealed into an album of tremendous depth and beauty connected by the sly groove of her piano trios, lyrics that confront loss and portend hope, and a mood that leans into darkness before ultimately finding the light.
Recorded direct to acetate - all live, no overdubs - Capitol Cuts - Live from Studio A captures a powerful moment in time. After months of cancelled shows Black Pumas went to Los Angeles this past fall and laid down eight explosive tracks at the famed Capitol Studio A. The recording brims with pent up energy, nearly bursting through the grooves on the expansive and mind-blowing seven minute rendition of “Colors.” A few weeks later the song would received a Grammy nomination for Record of the Year.
The new album from Charley Crockett is perhaps even more potent proof of his literal heartbreak than the scar on his chest. After undergoing open heart surgery that saved his life, Charley says he considered calming down for “just a minute” but once he recovered he did just the opposite. He states boldly with one eyebrow raised, “I wanted to make an album that would change the entire conversation about country music.”
That album is Welcome to Hard Times , an aptly-named collection that perfectly fits these troubled days even though it was made just before the pandemic hit. The music was shaped by his heart issues and producer Mark Neill’s desire to make “a dark gothic country record.” Charley certainly knew how to deliver that. “I think you can hear that deep, dark sadness in this record,” he says, “but I think it’s the kind of darkness that will uplift others.”
The GRAMMY® Award-winning maverick channels his signature sense of soul from the crossroads of rock ‘n' roll, blues, jazz, hip-hop, reggae and punk. Clark's most accomplished songwriting and virtuosic performances to date; THIS LAND delivers socially relevant, transcendentally ambitious, and musically rich declaration as unapologetic, undeniable, and unique as he is. He emerges with a body of work that is dynamic in every sense, embodying an ever-evolving sound that transformed him into an artistic force anointed by everyone from President Barack Obama to the late Prince.
Wire Mountain is Will Johnson's 6th solo album and sits atop a back catalog that includes Centro-matic, South San Gabriel, Marie/Lepanto, and Molina Johnson. When he's not writing and recording his own projects he's often contributing to others, like co-producing Austin Lucas' Immortal Americans, or playing drums in Strand of Oaks. Wire Mountain is Johnson's second album recorded with Britton Beisenherz at his Austin studio Ramble Creek Recording and together they further develop new palettes and textures for Johnson's songs, this time enlisting fellow Austinites Thor Harris (of Swans and Thor & Friends) and minimalist folk-duo Little Mazarn to help shape and define them. Britton also plays on the album, along with Austin legend Jon Dee Graham. "Cornelius" begins with a squall of feedback before giving way to acoustic guitars and an anthemic chorus that plunges into a dizzying electric guitar solo. "A Solitary Slip" is fragile folk, a lilting lullaby of finger-picked guitar, plucked banjo, and single piano notes with Little Mazarn's Lindsey Verrill mirroring Johnson's words. The last track is a hopeful instrumental, a calm before the next thing. "(You Were) Just Barely You."
Conquest Of Kingdoms is a compendium of career-spanning live performances, b-sides, covers and rarities, culled from the complete studio album recordings of The Sword. This 3-LP set features 16 previously unreleased tracks. Triple gatefold packaging.
Vinyl: $30.98 Buy