Hello out there. Lots of new releases we are featuring this week so we are going to get to them right away. If you are looking for info on recent vinyl restocks it’s just down below, and heck we’ve even added a huge load of some really excellent used CDs to check out too. Happy Friday!
Will Butler – Policy
Will Butler has been a member of the band Arcade Fire for over 10 years. This is his first release under his own name. Policy is American music – in the tradition of the Violent Femmes, The Breeders, The Modern Lovers, Bob Dylan, Smokey Robinson, The Magnetic Fields, Ghostface Killah. And John Lennon (I know, but it counts). Music where the holy fool runs afoul of the casual world. Policy was recorded in one week in Jimi Hendrix’s old living room (upstairs at Electric Lady Studios). Jeremy Gara played drums; other musicians contributed woodwinds and backing vocals. Most everything else was played by Will. “The song structures are traditional; the arrangements are clean. The music is experimental only in that it attacks consistency as a requirement for sincerity. The songs are angry, loving, joking, tired, honest, idiotic. They clash against each other but also fit and work together – as if a blind watchmaker made a Frankenstein watch that came alive and told extremely accurate time while having conflicting feelings about its creator. No, about creation itself. But then the watch makes friends with a talking rat, and they go on hilarious adventures until it turns out that the rat was dead the whole time. With a really good credits song – I mean, the whole soundtrack is excellent. You should check it out. Yours truly, Memphis Slim, Blues Musician.”
Damon & Naomi – Fortune
People talk about Damon & Naomi as if they’re the raw infrastructure that remained after Galaxie 500 fell apart, a steel skeleton stubbornly standing after an earthquake. But when the pair began a new project, they weren’t adjusting so much as starting from scratch. By the time they released More Sad Hits, they had grown enough as musicians and songwriters that they didn’t need to lean on stark sincerity and reverb-drenched emoting. Instead, they reigned in their sound, favoring acoustic over electric, building more complex and specific textures, and exploring smaller sonic spaces. If Galaxie 500 was ahead of its time, Damon & Naomi are prescient in their own way, firmly rooted in the early ’90s but hinting at things to come. The project provided a necessary platform for the pair to focus, hone and build on the groundwork that they laid for themselves, peeling away layers to reveal a shy closeness that Galaxie 500 never could. The pair’s latest project, Fortune, is an LP released in tandem with Naomi Yang’s video piece of the same name. She refers to the work as “a silent movie”, though the visuals are so bound up in the music (and vice versa) that it’s more of a long-form music video, a visual poem set to the metronome of a textural score. She conceived of the piece to explore conflicting feelings surrounding her father’s recent passing; Yang was suddenly burdened with a massive archive of his artistic work (her father was a photographer), as well as the ongoing aftermath of flawed parenting. Her use of the term “fortune”, then, is tinged with sardonicism but also with nostalgia – portraits from the 1940s and ’50s painted by protagonist Norman von Holtzendorff’s father (also recently deceased, and who also left his archive in Norman’s hands) feature prominently. An ongoing tarot card motif ties in another facet of the suddenly slippery term “fortune”, using Damon & Naomi’s now familiar brand of close, acoustic warmth to explore the past’s bearing on the future: “I want to be over / To touch and be gone / Forget this amnesia.” “Grey day celebration music for meshed afternoons; eleven strums and songs to savor as you wander till spring. Did Damon & Naomi dream them? Did I? Will you?” – Andy Zax
D’Angelo & The Vanguard – Black Messiah
The prodigal son of the soul and funk canon, D’Angelo, is back! His ever-awaited third studio album, Black Messiah, is his first album since the critically acclaimed Voodoo, bringing to an end a 14-year hiatus. The album blends 70’s jazz-funk and neo-soul.
Anyone who’s been keeping up should be keen to the fact that the long-lusted over project was recorded in full analog, so the liner notes’ PSA “For best results, listen at maximum volume” should be taken as a direct order for fervent D’lievers. And what better way to experience the gritty greatness of the release than a heavy-bodied vinyl pressing for the audio junkies?
The album features tracks co-penned by Kendra Foster (Parliament/Funkadelic) and Q-Tip (A Tribe Called Quest). It’s also co-produced by Questlove (The Roots), bassist Pino Palladino (John Mayer Trio, The RH Factor), and drummer James Gadson (Bill Withers, Temptations, Beck, Jamie Lidell).
Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – Chasing Yesterday
Second solo studio album from the legendary former Oasis frontman. “Ballad Of The Mighty I” features Johnny Marr on guitar!
Parquet Courts – Live At Third Man Records
Parquet Courts brought a sweltering performance to the hallowed grounds of Third Man’s Blue Room on June 5th of last year–and very fortunately, TMR was able to lovingly capture it with their one-of-a-kind, direct-to-acetate recording process. The set included a dynamic selection of songs from last year’s critically acclaimed album Sunbathing Animal, as well as the 2013 EP, Tally All The Things That You Broke. The end result? A record that will have your feet stompin’ and body rockin’ as soon as the needle hits.
Public Service Broadcasting – The Race For Space
Following the critical and commercial success of their debut album last year and 18 months’ extensive touring & festival appearances, Public Service Broadcasting are pleased to confirm the release of their eagerly anticipated second album, The Race For Space. Recorded at The Pool Studios and Abbey Road in London and, once again working with exclusive archive footage from the British Film Institute, the new record will tell the story of the American & Soviet space race from 1957 – 1972 via the duo’s eccentric mix of guitar-driven electronica, propulsive drumming and spoken word samples culled from this uniquely rich period of modern history. The Race For Space follows Inform – Educate – Entertain, Public Service Broadcasting’s debut album which reached #21 in the UK album charts.
Nice selection of new releases this week, if I was picking I’m going for Damon and Naomi, but I think Will Butler or D’Angelo will likely win this one. We’ve also just restocked the browser with a few popular albums.
Did I say CDs? Remember those shiny little circles that sound pretty good still too? We’ve just reloaded the used CD section with a good lot which has everything from Dead Kennedys, Beastie Boys, Nine Inch Nails, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Stooges and way way more.
We will be updating the Record Store Day list over the next day or to so be sure to check back. There’s loads more to be added but I think we are close to having most up there soon. Don’t forget to drop us a line and let us know what you are looking for, it’s your best chance at getting what you need.
That’s it for now, have an awesome weekend!