Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Now Downloading: New Releases 04.08.08 (cont.)

I haven't done this before, but there was so much great music (and so little else out there currently I'm caring to write about) that I'm giving new releases and extension of sorts. Yesterday, I hit the latest from Nick Cave, Man Man and Wye Oak, and if you count the week prior's poach of Foals and Monday's 'Ear on TV' sideways glance of the latest 'effort' from Tapes n' Tapes, I've already hit on five releases this week. But that still leaves so many still worthy of digital ink, like the latest from The Breeders, The Long Blondes, Jason Anderson, Clinic and more. This is Motherload '08, my friends, so I'll just tackle what I can without keeling over. (M83's latest is even in Rhapsody a week early, but for practical purposes, I'm pretending it's not here until next week.)

Playlist: New Releases 04.08.08

Album: The Breeders - Mountain Battles

The Breeders - Mountain BattlesBack six years after the under-appreciated Title TK, Kim Deal's Breeders pick up where they left off, with this similarly anti-Last Splash follow up. Odds are, then, that Mountain Battles will suffer the same lack of appreciation, which is too bad considering how many great moments there are to uncover in this album. Back to turning knobs is producer Steve Albini, who has helmed their best efforts (aforementioned Title TK and debut Pod,) but here his usual contributions are harder to notice. That's partially because, aside from "Walk it Off" and "German Studies," the songs don't lend themselves to Albini's trademark drum sound, instead relying more on a more sublime sound, as if Kim used Breeders old great oddities "Oh" and "Roi" as a blueprint for what to record. Or perhaps this is an equal and opposite reaction to the 2004 behemoth Pixies reunion (for instance, sister and Pixies tour mate Kelly sings beautifully in Spanish on "Regalame Esta Noche.") Whatever it is, I'm thankful that this simple artistic work came to fruition.

See the Deal sisters laying vocals for a demo of "Walk it Off" on the doc loudQUIETloud
Full Album Stream from AOL
Download: "Bang On" [mp3]

Album: The Long Blondes - Couples

Full Album Stream from AOL

The Long Blondes - CouplesWhen this Sheffield outfit released their debut (review 06/05/07,) post-punk geeks everywhere lost their shit. Lead singer Kate Jackson's come hither vocals came with a kick in the junk, and the guitar-based attitude hit a sweet spot. With their second release, they're seem to be charting post-punk's progression and roots, opting to infuse their sound with disco, noting Donna Summer's influence on the genre. Where the first album opened with one long squall of guitar feedback, Couples begins with one long synth note ("Century,") changing expectations immediately. It comes as less a surprise then to find out London DJ Erol Alkan is behind the production, and his hand is especially felt on the sleek track "Guilt," which is the obvious single here. In case folks are worried they've given up the harder edge, "I Like the Boys" and "Here Comes the Serious Bit" up the tempo and the attitude, while final track, "I'm Going to Hell," serves as a perfect ending to a fun ride. I can't wait to see where they take us next.

Album: Jason Anderson - The Hopeful and the Unafraid

Jason Anderson - The Hopeful and the UnafraidThe prolific Jason Anderson makes a valiant attempt to make a Born in the USA for 2008 ("El Paso,") opting for a fuller studio sound for his back of the bar stories. Here he's recording with former members of Magnolia Electric Co., pushing forward a more roots rock sound. The album was recorded in two days, while on a short break in the middle of his tour, with nearly everything live and the vocals all first take. As such, it has an immediate feel, which serves as the album's strength. Anderson's enthusiasm is hard to deny (he's also a children's music teacher,) and the only thing holding him back here is the feeling that some of this sounds like something to be co-opted for a car commercial. Put the blame it on John Mellencamp.

Full Album Stream from AOL

More on the radar this week in previous post.

tags: , , , , , , , ,

No comments: