Music Releases 01-26-24
Blue Raspberry is Katy Kirby’s follow up to her renowned debut album Cool Dry Place, which came out in February 2021. Singer/songwriter Katy Kirby introduced her warm, articulate vocals, perceptive lyrics, and playful adult-alternative style on her debut album as she toured tirelessly supporting bands like Waxahatchee, Andy Shauf, Julia Jacklin and Alex G.
That record was a tried-and-true folk collection, perfectly displaying the chops of a young songwriter and emanating the warm feel of a band in a room; Blue Raspberry, made with the same band and producers (Logan Chung and Alberto Sewald) , hits the gas and enters completely new territory as we see Katy truly step into her own as a songwriting force. She fearlessly leans far into baroque piano pop on tracks like ‘Redemption Arc’ and the title track ‘Blue Raspberry’, and lyrically she explores themes of loss and queer love. Very few are able to capture the same emo- tional, theatrical magic of artists like Fiona Apple, Tom Waits and Joanna Newsom but Katy pulls it off on this record; standout ‘Drop Dead’.
Vinyl: $26.98 Buy
Strawberry Shortcake Splash LP (Indie Exclusive). The Menzingers are an absolute institution. The Philadelphia punk legends' multi-decade reputation as road warriors with an unbeatable catalog is cemented as hard truth-and their seventh album, Some Of It Was True, stands as their most immediate-sounding and energetic record to date. The follow-up to 2019's sensational Hello Exile accomplishes the daunting task of capturing the Menzingers' distinctive live energy in the confines of the studio, resulting in a sound that's both rich, raw, and complementary to the group's increasingly prismatic songwriting approach. More than 15 years in, the Menzingers are still holding their listeners square in the immediate present, and Some Of It Was True documents that power in thrilling fashion.
"We wanted to make a fun record and write songs that we wanted to play live, and that's exactly what we did," co-vocalist/guitarist Greg Barnett says "We've always said that we want every album to sound live, but we never recorded an album live before. This was the first time we committed to that idea. We wanted to sound like how our band sounds onstage." Making the process easier: Grammy-nominated producer Brad Cook (Bon Iver, the War on Drugs, Waxahatchee), who joined the Menzingers in El Paso's legendary Sonic Ranch studios and lent his incredible ear for raw, immediate sound to help the band achieve Some Of It Was True's in-the-room live feel. "The Menzingers are as real as it gets," Cook says on his time in the studio with the band. "I had an absolute blast working with these guys and was moved to tears many times. They are truly dedicated to artistic growth, and to each other, in ways I found both refreshing and beautiful. I am now a lifer."
Blood, Hair, And Eyeballs - Alkaline Trio / New album produced by Bill Stevenson of All, Descendents, Black Flag, whose credits include As I Lay Dying, Rise Against, NOFX, Against Me! And many more-Guest appearance from Tim of Rise Against! - Alkaline Trio
CD: $18.98 Buy
Vinyl: $33.98 Buy
In a career that has taken him from the slate-mining towns of north-west Wales, down to the expat communities of Patagonia, up to the Mandan tribe of the Great Plains of North America and across to the Tuareg rock groups of the Saharan Desert, Gruff Rhys, one of Britain’s most beloved and successful singer-songwriters, has always been willing to follow an opportunity wherever it may lead him. And so it was that Gruff and his band – Osian Gwynedd (piano), Huw V Williams (double bass) and former Flaming Lips drummer turned Super Furry Animals archivist Kliph Scurlock (drums) – piled into a van to La Frette Studios, a recording facility installed in a 19th-century manor house on the outskirts of Paris, to record Sadness Sets Me Free in just three days. La Frette’s founder Olivier Bloch-Lainé regaled the group with stories from his time working with Brigitte Fontaine in the 60s and bringing Serge Gainsbourg’s go-to string arranger, Jean-Claude Vannier, into the pop world. Absorbing French pop history by night, by day Gruff’s new songs spilled out of the studio at a rate that exceeded even his own legendarily prolific standards. “It was a really intense period,” Gruff says of the sessions. “I’m trying to work as much in capturing moments as making pop confections these days." Opening with the country leanings and a despondent caricature of its title track before careening into the Tropicália-tinged "They Sold My Home To Build A Skyscraper”, on through to the hymnal, hopeful "Cover Up The Cover Up" and then coming full circle with the defiant "I’ll Keep Singing", Sadness Sets Me Freeexalts the power of music to heal the individual and to effect change on a universal scale.
Bursting out of Detroit Rock City and hailed by The Michigan Daily as "the past, present, and future of rock n' roll," Mac Saturn has grooves at its heart, playing with a buoyant energy that makes dancing a command rather than an option. As drummer-turned-frontman Macc -- who sings everything with the assurance and swagger that’s as much Harry Styles as Mick Jagger -- puts it: “The songs are rock, but they’ve got that other thing going on — that funky, dancey, Motown, whatever you want to call it — that makes them our own thing.”
The six-piece covered a lot of ground on its last year's debut EP Until the Money Runs Out, from the hip-swiveling “Diamonds” and “Mr. Cadillac” to the urgent punch of “Persian Rugs." Since then, they've become known for their electrifying live shows that harken back to the glitz and glam of 70s rock stars. Their own sold-out headlining shows are packed with fans singing along with every word - even to songs that haven't been released yet - and their tours with The Struts and Dirty Honey have only inspired more people to enter Mac Saturn's orbit.
A vibrant and irresistible earworm, "Mint Julep" is the first single off their upcoming debut album, Hard To Sell (releasing January 2024). The album was produced by The Rust Brothers - aka Al Sutton, Marlon Young, Herschel Boone - at Rust Belt Studios (Greta Van Fleet, Electric Six, Mark Foster) and mastered by Bill Skibbe (Jack White, Franz Ferdinand, Wallows).
Polaroid Lovers is the 7th studio album from four-time GRAMMY winner Sarah Jarosz. Produced by Daniel Tashian, Polaroid Lovers is a bold creative statement that sees Jarosz exploring new sonic territory. The 11 songs on the album, all co-written by Jarosz with songwriters including Tashian, Jon Randall, Ruston Kelly, and Natalie Hemby, touch on themes both personal and universal: love, longing, and finding one’s place in the world.
Vinyl: $23.98 Buy
Remastered reissue of acclaimed singer-songwriter John Moreland's sophomore album, In The Throes (2013), featuring "Break My Heart Sweetly" and "3:59 AM"
Liverpool’s acclaimed sensual existentialist Brad Stank today announces the release of his resolutely romantic new album In The Midst of You on January 26th via his new label Sunday Best Recordings. He launches the album alongside the quintessentially Brad ‘Natty Wine’ and its accompanying video. The new single ‘Natty Wine’ neatly encapsulates the many charms that emerge throughout the album. With Brad backed by soulful female vocal harmonies, the song’s jazzy psychedelia possesses a touch of twanging Americana, its warm and vibrant live instrumentation making for a song as relaxed as a Sunday afternoon in the sun. It’s also notable for featuring Brad’s favourite percussive instrument deep in the mix: a wooden frog. He adds, “This is a tongue-in-cheek song I wrote after being gifted a bottle of natural wine by a friend. I’m a working-class boy who would much rather drink shitty lager at a party, like Stella or Holsten Pils. I’ve got no right to be writing a song about natty wine but I was feeling bougie. It’s a love song in disguise, I liked the imagery of lyrics like, ‘Your sweet loving just keeps dripping from the vine.’” In The Midst of You finds Brad in late night lothario mode, his previous seductive style now taking a more resolutely romantic and perhaps surprisingly spiritual direction. The phrase “in the midst of you” comes from the Bible, Zephaniah 3:17, “the full quote is something along the lines of “God is in the midst of you” - basically meaning that you have to look inward for peace or enlightenment, etc. the album is about that in parts and also, as always, I tried to put a romantic twist on it so that the “in the midst of you” is about being in love with somebody. It’s kind of a juxtaposition but I’ve always enjoyed taking spiritual messages and giving them a double meaning, explains Brad. “Hopefully it’s a positive message of prostrating yourself to somebody, or to spirituality or something - but giving yourself fully to something, being in the midst…”
Introducing Office Dog, hailing from Otepoti/Dunedin and residing in Tamaki Makaurau/Auckland. The trio, led by Kane Strang on guitar/vocals, alongside Rassani Tolovaa on bass and Mitchell Innes on drums, present their debut album Spiel — out January 26, 2023 via New West Records Records. Assembling intricate musical collages, Office Dog fearlessly explore the depths of complex emotions through layers of tension, release, and celestial lyricism.
Office Dog formed in 2021. Amidst a busy solo career, front-person Kane Strang sought a more collaborative musical outlet. He teamed up with fellow musicians and previous collaborators Mitchell Innes and Rassani Tolovaa, and the trio began writing together across various locations in Tamaki Makaurau/Auckland. Over the next year, fragments began assembling into songs, ultimately culminating in the creation of Office Dog’s debut full-length album, ‘Spiel’, recorded in collaboration with producer De Stevens at Roundhead Studios and mastered by Jonathan Pearce (The Beths).
Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes return with their fifth studio album, 'Dark Rainbow' - set for release on 26 January 2024. The Rattlesnakes have built a reputation for blistering anthems that owe as much to brooding desert rock as it does hardcore and power-pop. They’re redefining punk-rock with a sound that straddles eras and genres, putting The Rattlesnakes in a category all their own, while also challenging tired cliches and setting the world to rights.
GRAMMY award-winning popstar and acclaimed songwriter Kim Petras releases her debut album, Feed The Beast, on Amigo Records (a division of Republic Records). Feed The Beast is 15 tracks of pure pop perfection; an album about sacrificing every part of yourself for your biggest passion in life that sees her embody a modern-day pop Andromeda – a spin on the classic Greek tale. Her offering to her beast, the lead single “Alone,” features diamond-selling hip hop icon Nicki Minaj. Indie Exclusive ART ALBUM CD release comes in a 12 x 12 gatefold jacket package. Limited Edition.
Multi award-winning, platinum-selling artist, Tom Odell, returns in 2024 with his 6th studio album, Black Friday. Armed with a newfound sense of freedom and creative control, this new era of Tom’s career has seen him grow his online fanbase by millions, play the biggest live shows of his career and become one of the most streamed British artists in the world. Moving forward as an artist firmly in the driving seat, 2024 heralds Tom’s third album in three years.
RIAA multi-platinum certified rap superstar, Kevin Gates, returns with his latest single “Yonce Freestyle” featuring Sexyy Red and BG. The single is all about how much he loves partying at Beyonce concerts with none other than Sexyy Red and BG along for the ride..
To accompany the release, Kevin announced the official pre-order for his new upcoming album, The Ceremony. The album is centered around Kevin's spiritual growth and personal development through religious ceremony.
"Unbroken" is a very New Model Army album, full of guitars but with the emphasis on bass and drums that characterizes all the band's work. "First Summer After", the opener of the album and the first single, spreads a deep road movie feeling and takes you on a trip you'll want to see more of.
TEC is a journey through the past four years, reflecting on Lil Tecca’s rapid ascent, subsequent challenges, and ultimate triumph as he has navigated his evolution. With TECexecutive produced by Lil Tecca and Taz Taylor, Tecca embraces his comfort in his own skin and a newfound confidence, diving deeper into his roots and personal narrative. The fourth studio album from Lil Tecca includes the previously released tracks “500lbs” and “HVN ON EARTH” featuring Kodak Black.
Just 23 years old and already a seasoned veteran of Nashville’s elite songwriting community, Conner Smith has become one of Country’s most anticipated new artists, a talent mixing prime-of-life passion with old-soul perspective. Continuing to deliver next level music to his loyal fan base, Smith showcases his authentic storytelling and soulful voice throughout his full-length debut Smoky Mountains, featuring GOLD-certified “Take It Slow,” viral hit “I Hate Alabama” and chart climbing “Creek Will Rise.”
Vinyl: $34.98 Buy
Original Soundtrack for A24’s Past Lives, featuring original score by Christopher Bear and Daniel Rossen and the original song “Quiet Eyes” by Sharon Van Etten. Pressed on cloud white vinyl, with original paintings by renowned artist Na Kim.