Hitting the Racks
Here's your weekly rundown of the new releases hitting the racks at Grimey's: October 21st, 2016
Leonard Cohen - You Want It Darker CD (Columbia)
"For the past 25 years I've had this notion that on every successive Leonard Cohen record his voice would get deeper and deeper until one day he'd put out an album so subsonic that you'd just feel it, not hear it. Well, we're close. 'You Want It Darker,' the title track to his 14th studio album in a 49-year recording career, speaks of a world without hope. 'A million candles burning / for the love that never came. / You want it darker / we kill the flame.' Despite the depth of his voice and the strength and wisdom of his writing, I discern a frailness. What I hear are multiple takes on just this one track and a few edits within a verse. Listen at 2:06 - you can hear an edit right in mid-breath just after the line 'middle-class and tame.' And shortly after, Cohen says, 'I'm ready my Lord,' and the choir sullenly and eerily keeps the tone dark. It's sad and difficult, but as good as this is, I can imagine this forthcoming album as Cohen's last statement." -- NPR. Vinyl due 11/25
David Crosby - Lighthouse CD/LP (Ground Up)
Lighthouse is an intimate, stripped-down set that highlights David Crosby's instantly recognizable voice, incisive songwriting, and incomparable guitar work. The palpable joy in the 9-song collection captures the iconic artist in an unexpected burst of inspiration. For Lighthouse, Crosby received an able assist from Michael League, the bandleader/bassist for Snarky Puppy who executive produced and co-wrote much of the album with Crosby. It features a rare economy of sound, filled primarily by David Crosby's voice and guitars, and Michael League's bass. On album opener, "Things We Do For Love," written for his wife Jan, David's vocals reflect a poetic tenderness. On "Paint You A Picture," a cinematic tale of romantic regret co-written with Marc Cohn (Walking In Memphis), they are filled with remorseful resignation. The longtime social activist lands his political punches as he bitingly condemns the craven politicians who send other people's children to war on "Somebody Other Than You," and compassionately reminds us that we are all the same on "Look In Their Eyes," a poignant tale about the Syrian refugee crisis.
Pretenders - Alone CD/LP (BMG Rights Management)
The first new album in eight years from Chrissie Hynde and Co. Originally intended as a follow-up to Hynde's 2014 solo album Stockholm, Alone evolved into a bonafide Pretenders album (although she is the only original band member to appear on it). Alone was recorded with the Black Keys' Dan Auerbach at his Easy Eye Studio in Nashville and sees Hynde joined by bassist Dave Roe (Johnny Cash, Loretta Lynn, Sturgill Simpson), pedal steel guitarist Russ Pahl (Blake Shelton), guitarist Kenny Vaughan (Lana Del Rey), keyboardist Leon Michels, and drummer Richard Swift.
Jimmy Eat World - Integrity Blues CD/LP+MP3 (RCA)
With warm production and a powerful upbeat groove, the first single on Jimmy Eat World's new album Integrity Blues, "Sure And Certain," pairs a buzzing guitar hum with an unshakable chant. "It's about the idea of having blinders on for what you want to do and achieve," the frontman explains. "Since you're so laser focused on what you think you want, you're missing out on everything around you. It can be a very limiting way to go about life." Meanwhile, the gorgeously minimal title track "Integrity Blues" tempers orchestral, cinematic overtones with a stark and striking vocal performance. Elsewhere on the record, "Get Right" snaps into an energetic refrain, while "Through" serves up one of the band's hookiest moments to date. "You Are Free" flaunts one of the group's most hummable and heartfelt refrains, serving as another high watermark. "It Matters" illuminates the band's diverse sonic palette and covers what Adkins describes as "a central theme about the idea that a sense of comfort comes from within and not just external validation." "Pass The Baby" builds from a delicate heartbeat-style click into a deliberate and distorted explosion. Near seven-minute closer "Pol Roger" carves out an emotional and entrancing climax encased in a rapture of guitars and vocals, which according to Adkins, "Felt like the right way to sum everything up."
American Football - American Football (LP2) CD/LP+MP3/Cassette (Polyvinyl)
Not long after Polyvinyl Records released American Football's self-titled debut album in 1999, the band called it quits, having only played a smattering of Champaign-Urbana college house parties and sets at small clubs like Chicago's legendary Fireside Bowl. Such an inauspicious turn of events made what followed all the more incredible. Over time, the record went on to become one of Polyvinyl's bestselling releases to date, and ended up serving as "one of the single most influential rock records of its time" according to Noisey and many others. To most everyone that found them after the fact, the band was no more than an apparition. At a time when reunions have become rote, American Football is decidedly an anomaly. There is no past glory to relive or reignite, nor the burden to branch out and break from a well-worn formula. Seventeen years later everything still feels brand new, because for them it is. "You can't just forget all the other lives you've lived," Mike Kinsella sings, and every single one of the nearly two decades worth of experiences since they last put pen to paper as American Football seem to bleed through on this record. [Limited 180gm color vinyl pressings also available: one orange, the other red and orange starburst.]
Savoy Motel - Savoy Motel CD/LP (What's Your Rupture?)
The debut album by this Nashville four-piece comes from a pedigree of garage, punk, and power-pop groups (bassist Jeffrey Novak founded both Cheap Time and the Rat Traps; drummer Jessica McFarland was also in Cheap Time, and along with guitarists Dillon Watson and Mimi Galbierz, played in Heavy Cream). Savoy Motel transposes the energy and hooks of those groups to an entirely different move: an intensely orchestrated hybrid of glam rock, soul, dance music, and showmanship.
ELEL - Geode CD/LP (Mom + Pop)
Nashville eight-piece indie pop collective ELEL sound like a feel good orchestra on their debut LP. Consisting of two horns, two drums, three keys, guitar, bass and whole lot of vocals, ELEL was born from front man Ben Elkins meeting a girl named Eliska. Tied together by the bustling Nashville music scene but from an array of locations, ELEL includes Ben (Arkansas), Zach (Kentucky), Tim (Mississippi), Jo Jo (Queens, NY), Alex (Pennsylvania), and life-long Nashvillians (so far) Fredrick, Jerry and Stefan.
The Radio Dept. - Running Out Of Love CD/LP (Labrador)
One of Sweden's most influential indie/electronic pop acts The Radio Dept.'s new album Running Out Of Love is their first album since the critical and commercial success of 2010's Clinging To A Scheme which earned a Best New Music rating from Pitchfork. Running Out Of Love has been described by the band as an album about life in Sweden in 2016 moving in the wrong direction: politically, intellectually, morally. It's about the impatience that turns into anger, hate and ultimately withdrawal and apathy when love for the world and our existence begins to falter. Lead single "Swedish Guns" is a scathing indictment of the Swedish arms industry. The track features an infectious grooving riff underlying dark but moving lyrics, a powerful combination to be sure. "Their discontentedness is paired with delicate vocals and appealing, almost hypnotic beat that betrays the somber overtones. Sometimes the delivery is more powerful when it's paradoxical and subliminal" - Prefix. [Limited color vinyl pressing also available.]
NxWorries - Yes Lawd! CD/2xLP (Stones Throw)
On Yes Lawd!, Anderson.Paak plays a theatrically brash version of himself who raps and sings like a '70s superstar and talks sh*t like a stone cold player. The performance is seeded with details from his life, which has seen a fair share of struggle and hard-won triumph. Meanwhile Knxwledge weaves a tapestry of sampled bits and live fragments bass, brass and violin that smooths everything over, reminding us that despite whatever struggle it took to get here... well, you already know the name: NxWorries. Anderson .Paak and loop beast Knxwledge - make an exceedingly clean pair, even as they deal almost entirely in the gritty: vocals that sound lived in for a couple of lifetimes; beats that kick up dust as they bump; and an 18-track set that plays like a mixtape merging skits, songs, and snippets into a package of fluid groove and rough-cut rap 'n' soul gems. You may have heard these two out in the world, on their own or sprinkling some of their musical gold dust on someone else's songs, but this is what happens when .Paak and Knx get home, lay back, light up, and let it go.
Lady Gaga - Joanne CD (Interscope)
Fifth studio album from the best-selling singer/songwriter. Lady Gaga takes a "stripped-down" approach and collaborates with Mark Ronson, Beck and Josh Homme among others. [CD version is available in Regular and Deluxe editions. Deluxe adds three bonus tracks.]
Vanessa Carlton - Liberman Live CD (Dine Alone)
Recorded at 3rd & Lindsley in Nashville, TN, this live set includes songs from her 2015 album Liberman. The recordings include John J. McCauley (Deer Tick), and Skye Steele on violin. The Watson Twins are featured on "Operator" singing backup vocals.
Sia - This Is Acting [Deluxe Edition] CD (Monkey Puzzle/RCA)
This deluxe edition of Sia's recent album features seven additional tracks including "The Greatest" (featuring Kendrick Lamar), her #1 single "Cheap Thrills" (featuring Sean Paul) and five more songs including never-before-heard tracks "Confetti," "Midnight Decisions," "Jesus Wept," a remix of "Move Your Body" by Alan Walker, and a solo version of "The Greatest."
Kadhja Bonet - The Visitor CD/LP (Fat Possum)
L.A.'s Kadhja - pronounced "kod-ya" - creates cosmic neo-R&B 'n' psychedelic jazz perfect for fans of Flying Lotus and Deradoorian. Her new album The Visitor opens with an awe you'd expect from the golden age of cinema. In its half-mythical atmosphere, "Earth Birth" offers keys and choirs science-fictionally echoing down from deep space. This overture fades and Kadhja's voice velvetly emerges on "Honeycomb" with a timelessness sending listeners scrambling to find her nearest genre. After running through classical, jazz, soul, folk, and even psychedelia, you find it ultimately impossible to comfortably place her. This is all by Kadhja's design. For if she were "folk" it would only be the folk of some future aeon, a thousand hears hence. If her rich instrumentation of strings and wind strikes us as a "classic," it's not because it harkens to any past era, but because Kadhja paints perennial imagery that could as much be now as then as any other time. The Visitor is an opus unpolluted by the mixed advice or overproductions that plague other albums. It plays through like one individual's lucid dream in what is sometimes an all-too-dreamless musical landscape. [Limited color vinyl pressing also available.]
Jones - New Skin CD/LP+MP3 (PIAS America)
New Skin is the debut studio album by London-based emerging soul singer/songwriter Cherie Jones-Mattis, known by her stage name as JONES.
The Dean Ween Group - The Deaner Album CD (ATO)
The Deaner Album is the debut album from The Dean Ween Group. On it, guitarist Mickey "Dean Ween" Melchiondo brings his love of classic guitar rock to 14 original compositions (including four instrumentals) that echo everything from classic rock to cracked country to the quirky mix of soul, funk, metal and punk that defined Ween. "My tastes are very mainstream; I love Jimi Hendrix and Santana and Zeppelin, but my ears are always open," The Deaner says. "P-Funk, they're right up there with the Beatles. That's what my influences were - that and punk rock - and I wanted all that in this album." After Ween stopped, I put my guitar down for almost a year," he continues. "I'll never do that again. I'm so into practicing and writing and being good at my craft right now. I'm back in playoff shape. I write and play and record all day, every day, and I'm going to keep it there for the rest of my life."
Weyes Blood - Front Row Seat To Earth CD (Mexican Summer)
"At times on the new album from indie outfit Weyes Blood, you can't quite tell where you are. The aesthetic (artist presence, voice, song arrangements) feels rather folk, but the way Natalie Mering, who is the band, vocalizes with such thick, haunting tones makes you question what it is you're actually listening to. I still don't really know, but I like it. Front Fow Seat To Earth seems defined by just how transitional and evasive it is. It's tender and brimming with emotion on songs like 'Do You Need My Love' and 'Seven Words,' but never lets the audience too close to the artist, or even the subject, for that matter. Her vocal talent is unique, something of a cross between Joan Baez and Judee Sill, but even that's not quite right. There's no good category to put her or this album in, except maybe 'original.'" - Cecil Whig
The Pretty Reckless - Who You Selling For CD/2xLP (Razor & Tie)
Who You Selling For is an arresting collection of rock tunes that expand The Pretty Reckless' sound to encompass soulful, bluesy undertones, written by front woman Taylor Momsen and guitarist Ben Phillips. This raucous 12-track collection puts Momsen's dark lyrics and raw, charismatic vocals on full display while the band delivers at full intensity with a level of musicianship that raises the bar. The deeply personal album features a diverse set of standout tracks, from the blistering hard rock of "Oh My God" to the classic southern rock of "Back To The River." Lead single "Take Me Down" features Taylor's distinctively smoky voice rolling over '60s-tinged rock guitar. "Who You Selling For has it all. The Pretty Reckless have not been afraid to experiment on this album. From the foot stomping anthem 'Prisoner' to the more fast paced numbers, and not forgetting the blues rooted sound of 'Wild City,' it is clear that The Pretty Reckless are ready to shake things up and explore more of the wide landscape that is rock 'n' roll." - Metal Wani
Crocodiles - Dreamless CD/LP (Zoo Music)
Crocodiles' first two albums made their home within a stew of fuzzed-out psychedelia, and the following three albums explored pop sensibilities placed against whirring guitars and barbed production, but on this album the duo's artistic departure places their guitars in the backseat in favor of a more spacious, synthesizer and piano-driven sound.
White Lies - Friends CD/LP+MP3 (BMG Rights Management)
With their fourth album Friends, White Lies haven't so much abandoned their trademark synth-rock style as given it a spring clean by exploring new sounds. For many reasons, it felt like a fresh start. The trio was temporarily without a label after a bout of record company reorganization. Rather than re-sign straight away, they decided to record Friends under their own steam without the pressure of a deadline or a budget, or even the guidance of a producer. The album was recorded in Bryan Ferry's private studio in London's Olympia and was self-produced by the band. [Limited edition vinyl picture disc also available.]
Syd Arthur - Apricity CD (Harvest) Formed in Canterbury in 2003,
Syd Arthur is comprised of brothers Liam (lead vocals and guitar), Joel (bass) and Josh (drums) Magill, and violin player Raven Bush. The name of the band is a nod to Syd Barrett and Arthur Lee. Formed out of the forest party rave scene in their home county, and with a hard-won DIY self-sufficiency, Syd Arthur developed a sound and approach miles beyond their foursquare indie peers. Here was swirling rock with psychedelic textures, guitar-based trance with a funk groove. A band adaptive enough, bold enough, to tour with White Denim and The Strokes. Far from being young crate-diggers spun from a "Canterbury scene" wormhole, 2016 finds Syd Arthur lauded as ahead-of-the-curve trailblazers, pop-psych adventurers who count as peers Tame Impala, Temples and Toy. Their fourth album, Apricity, is a freshly invigorated take on the psych-pop revolution they helped usher in. Vinyl due 11/18.
Kevin Devine - Instigator CD/LP (PMTraitors, LLC)
Devine is a master storyteller, and he imbues his ninth album Instigator - from the biting power-pop of "Both Ways" and "No Why" to the angular, Nirvana-esque "Guard Your Gates" & gorgeously finger-picked "No One Says You Have To" - with intricate details and often-uncomfortable truths. Their meanings are personal, but their themes are universal. It's a skill that makes both his albums and his live show so alluring: Even when Devine's writing about the world at large, he's pointing a mirror back at himself.
Agnes Obel - Citizen Of Glass CD/LP (PIAS America)
Citizen Of Glass is the new album from Danish singer/songwriter Agnes Obel. The title comes from the German concept of the gläserner bürger, the human or glass citizen," says Obel. "It's actually a legal term about the level of privacy the individual has in a state, and in health it's become a term about how much we know about a person's body or biology or history - if they're completely made of glass we know everything. There's an increasing sense in this world that you have to make yourself a bit of glass. To be willing to open up, use yourself as material, and not just if you're an artist or a musician." "As an album, Citizen Of Glass is much more spellbinding than [previous albums] Philarmonics (2010) or Aventine (2013, thanks to the scope of its ambition. It's bigger, more ample, fleshed out. Even during the refined, repetitive instrumental sequences (the poignant "Red Virgin Soil"), Obel goes to the essential and is never lost in a vain or free 'beautiful.' Many times, she extracted herself from the "pop cocoon" to venture on virgin lands. The beautiful sonorous material of Citizen Of Glass is rich of all this, and much more. Over the listens, the album brings its singular beauty and confirms that the Danish musician is a truly unique artist." - Qobuz
Streets Of Laredo - Wild CD/LP (Dine Alone)
A rousing blend of gospel-tinged folk and psychedelic Americana. The title track essentially sums up their attitude since starting the band in Auckland almost five years ago -- it's a gorgeous, soul-stirring ballad with a haunting trumpet line, buttery harmonies and a chorus that goes: "They call us wild / Let's show them wild."
Saint Motel - saintmotelevision CD (New Elektra)
Saint Motel is an American indie pop band from Los Angeles, whose music has been described as everything from "dream pop" to "indie prog".
Hooton Tennis Club - Big Box Of Chocolates CD/LP+MP3 (PIAS America)
Hooton Tennis Club release their second album, Big Box Of Chocolates produced by Edwyn Collins at his Clashnarrow Studios in Helmsdale, Scotland. If their debut album, Highest Point In Cliff Town was the band's sprightly statement of intent, Big Box Of Chocolates may well be their coming-of-age record, retaining all the color and invention of their debut, while being elevated by richer instrumentation and lyrics that hint at slightly heavier themes: love and loss, nihilism and the 'non-spaces' of Northern England, all delivered in the band's typically laconic, bittersweet style, like a Mersey Beat Murakami.
Holy Sons - In The Garden CD/LP+MP3 (PTKF/Partisan)
Avant-garde Portland-based songwriter Emil Amos, or as he is most commonly known Holy Sons, has been releasing albums for over two decades now. In The Garden is Amos' thirteenth studio album, and his sound is far more refined than prior. This album is a deep exploration of melody because Amos doesn't have a traditional structure like verse, chorus and bridge. Still, Amos digs a lot into '60s-'70s singer/songwriter music for inspiration, but he still makes it unique and contemporary. RIYL: Sun Kil Moon, Kurt Vile.
John K Samson - Winter Wheat CD/2xLP+MP3 (Epitaph)
Singer/songwriter John K. Samson enlists the rhythm section from his renowned band The Weakerthans for much of his second solo album, Winter Wheat. The album was inspired by the search for connection and community, his hometown of Winnipeg, and our individual and collective struggles with addictions to drugs, screens, and fossil fuels. The spare and thoughtful arrangements also feature Greg Smith of The Weakerthans on electric bass, Ashley Au on double and electric bass, Leanne Zacharias on cello, and Shotgun Jimmie on electric guitar.
Dan Layus -Dangerous Things CD/LP (Plated)
Layus' debut album Dangerous Things spans influences from Hank Williams to Tom Waits, from Dwight Yoakam to Woody Guthrie.
Kevin Fowler - Coming To A Honky Tonk Near You CD (Kevin Fowler)
Fowler is steeped in the old-school charm of classic country music, amped up with a modern energy all his own, and steadily touring from one packed house of honky-tonk diehards to another. "Hardcore troubadour hillbilly blues."
Nekromantix - Symphony Of Wolf Tones & Ghost Notes CD/LP+MP3 (Hellcat)
New album from the veteran psychobilly trio. Symphony Of Wolf Tones & Ghost Notes shows a darkly romantic sensibility shaped by the band's love of monster, zombie, vampire, werewolf, and B-horror fiction.
Civilian - You Won't Believe What Privilege Costs CD (Tooth & Nail)
New album from the Nashville indie rockers. [Vinyl edition due November 4.]
Joan As Police Woman & Benjamin Lazar Davis - Let It Be You CD (Reveal)
"Even traditional themes defy convention on the excellent Let It Be You, Joan Wasser's new album in cahoots with fellow Brooklynite Benjamin Lazar Davis. Despite its name, [album track] 'Motorway' is not a kraut-rock or drive-pop anthem, but a celestial, tech-orchestral lullaby, and 'Station' is not a launchpad for freedom, but rather a study in stillness: a chiming guitar lament that's resilient enough to weather the dark night and bare its tears - and a celebration of strength and vulnerability that's echoed in the sublime, industrial electro of 'Broke Me in Two'. Environmental machine-pop dirge 'Overloaded', meanwhile, chimes with the latest protest songs from Wasser's former sonic sparring partner Anohni, and serves to remind that over ten years since they first worked together, they remain among pop's most singular voices." - The List
Jonatha Brooke - Midnight. Hallelujah CD (Bad Dog)
New album from the singer/songwriter. "Jonatha Brooke brilliantly balances the soulfulness of her songs with rock, pop and jazz inflections, while maintaining thought-provoking lyrics." - M Musicians & Music Michael Bublé - Nobody But Me CD/LP (Reprise) Nobody But Me is the multi-Grammy, multi-platinum award winning singer's first album in three years and is his ninth studio album. [CD version is available in Regular and Deluxe editions. Deluxe adds three bonus tracks.]
Nico Muhly/Teitur Lassen - Confessions CD (Nonesuch)
New collaboration between acclaimed American composer Nico Muhly and the Faroese singer/songwriter Teitur. The two musicians began work on the project when Muhly was composer-in-residence at Muziekgebouw Eindhoven in the Netherlands. The songs' lyrics were inspired by or culled from video and commentary the pair found on YouTube. "We came up with this premise of boring videos, home videos," Teitur explains. "It was a time when everyone was posting these meaningless videos. It was just fascinating when we started watching them... The more you watched them the more you started to wonder, 'What is behind this? Why are people doing this?' They are really saying, 'This is really beautiful, this is really sick, this is me,' people confessing things. And that gave us the title for the record."
Piers Faccini - I Dreamed On An Island CD (Six Degrees)
I Dreamed An Island is a personal quest for Piers Faccini and the album describes his voyage towards an imagined haven through the storms of fear and intolerance currently brewing around the world. Sung mostly in English but in French, Italian dialects and Arabic, too, the album is an impassioned celebration of cultural diversity and pluralism. Searching for a bygone golden era when coexistence and religious tolerance once prevailed, Faccini found a model for his utopian haven in 12th Century Sicily. At the crossroads of Western, Arabic and Byzantine influence, the island briefly flourished as the most enlightened and advanced society in medieval Europe. I Dreamed On An Island depict this unique moment of creative cohabitation between peoples and faiths. Inspired by traditions centuries old -- but firmly 21st century in its blending of languages, narratives and instrumental arrangements -- electric guitars converse across time with a Baroque viola d'amore, while an oud answers a medieval psaltery and a Moroccan guembri pulses trance-like to the drums. The songs resonate with the voices of his migrant ancestors -- and his island is a Mediterranean multilingual refuge, where orange groves, horseshoe arches, gold leaf, lapis lazuli and stories abound.
Cakes Da Killa - Hedonism CD/LP (Ruffians)
The New Jersey rapper follows a series of hot mixtapes with his debut album. Hedonism, while staying true to the charismatic flows that brought the critical acclaim from the start, shows a new side to Cakes with evolved production work and savage onslaught of raw and untamed storytelling, and features guest contributions from Peaches, Rye Rye, Josh Dst with production from LSDXOXO, BoyGenius, Noah Breakfast and more.
I Prevail - Lifelines CD (Fearless)
An explosive hardcore quintet from Rochester Hills, Michigan, I Prevail formed in 2013 around the talents of Brian Burkheiser (vocals), Eric Vanlerberghe (vocals), Steve Menoian (guitar), Jordan Berger (guitar), and Lee Runestad (drums). Employing a blistering blend of metalcore, pop-punk, and post-hardcore that invokes names like Bring Me the Horizon, We Came as Romans, and A Day To Remember, the band issued their debut EP, Heart vs. Mind, via Fearless Records in December 2014. A hard-hitting cover of Taylor Swift's "Blank Space," which elicited over two million views on YouTube, helped to further establish the band as rising force within the hardcore scene. Lifelines is the band's debut album.
Pelander - Time CD (Nuclear Blast)
Witchcraft frontman Magnus Pelander releases his debut solo full-length. "If you've been missing Witchcraft's pioneering retro-doom aesthetic, there are definitely some parts of this record to which you're going to want to pay particular attention." - The Obelisk
Wovenwar - Honor Is Dead CD (Metal Blade)
"The weight of the technical yet lithe riffing -- combined with Jordan Mancino's thunderous, inimitable drumming and vocalist Shane Blay's visceral performance as he delivers lyrics rife with anger and frustration -- makes Honor Is Dead's soulful, engaging self-titled debut seem almost lightweight by comparison."
Obituary - Ten Thousand Ways To Die CDEP (Relapse)
The death metal legends return with a special two-song single containing a pair of brand new studio tracks plus a bonus live set of twelve classics and fan favorites from the band's catalog.
KoЯn - The Serenity Of Suffering CD/LP+MP3 (Roadrunner)
The Serenity Of Suffering marks the second KoЯn album since the return of guitarist Brian "Head" Welch, who said, "This is a record to me that the intensity of KoЯn is back, and the live energy. Raw energy is there." Lead single "Rotting In Vain" was written about being in that black place, being in situations that I don't like in life," frontman Jonathan Davis told Rolling Stone. "Be it relationships, or feeling when you're stuck and you're just being abused, or you don't like where you're at, and you just sit there and rot." Along with "Rotting In Vain," The Serenity of Suffering also includes the song "A Different World," which features vocals from Slipknot 's Corey Taylor.
John Prine - For Better, Or Worse LP (Oh Boy)
Recently released on CD - now available on vinyl. "John Prine was once touted, along with every other gravelly young huckster with a guitar, as the new Dylan. If this latest release is any indication, he's more like the new George Jones. For Better, Or Worse is an anthology of classic country duets by the likes of Jones and other deities of the Grand Ole Opry. Prine has revisited them accompanied by a sorority of Nashville's rootsiest songbirds to parry and spar in break-up songs and make-up songs. Prine did something similar with In Spite Of Ourselves in 1999. This follow-up is another almanac of historical pleasures. They include George Jones's mournful 'Color Of The Blues,' sung with Susan Tedeschi, and Buck Owens's courtroom barney 'Mental Cruelty' (with Kacey Musgraves, who once wrote a song called 'John Prine,' giving as good as she gets). With Miranda Lambert Prine even sounds cheerful on Hank Williams's 'Cold, Cold Heart.' And why shouldn't he? He sings the enchanting '40s love duet 'My Happiness' with Fiona Prine, the third Mrs P. This marriage of Prine and the great country songbook is made in heaven." - The Art Desk
Janes Addiction - Sterling Spoon 6xLP (Rhino)
Includes: Nothing's Shocking (1988), Ritual de lo Habitual (1990), Live From The Palladium (1990), and Selections From Kettle Whistle (demos and rarities). 180gm.
The Marcus King Band - The Marcus King Band LP (Fantasy)
Recently released on CD - now available on vinyl. At only 20 years of age, Marcus King's dazzling musical ability is on full display throughout The Marcus King Band, the young phenom's second full-length LP. The album was produced by King's champion Warren Haynes, who expertly wraps the band's muscular live energy around a rising young songwriter of unusual clarity and depth.
Adrian Younge - The Electronique Void: Black Noise Instrumentals LP (Linear Labs)
Younge's 10-track instrumental LP is his first excursion into the electronic music field. But don't think it's compatible to the rave-ready EDM of Skrillex, David Guetta, or Calvin Harris. The Electronique Void is an updated version of tunes forged by analog synthesizers, tape machines, and microphones from 1968-1973.
Erykah Badu - Baduism  2xLP (Motown) Erykah Badu - Mama's Gun  2xLP (Motown) Vinyl reissues of the neo soul singer/songwriter's first two albums.
Depeche Mode - 101 [Reissue/1989] 2xLP (Rhino)
Vinyl reissue of the 1988 live album - the 101st (and final) of that tour. The Cowboy Junkies - The Trinity Session [Reissue/1988] LP (Acoustic Sounds) 200gm gatefold reissue. Featuring the sultry voice of Margo Timmins, the precise musicianship of her brothers Peter (on drums) and Michael (on guitar), and bassist Alan Anton, The Trinity Session is a spare, evocative, countrified-rock classic.
Enya - Watermark [Reissue/1988] LP (Reprise)
Enya - Shepherd's Moon [Reissue/1991] LP (Reprise)
Enya - Memory Of Trees  LP (Reprise)
The Irish new age singer's second album is back in print on vinyl. Shepherd's Moon and Memory of Trees are due out on vinyl 11/11.
Planes Mistaken For Stars - Prey LP (Deathwish Inc.)
After a ten-year absence, the post-hardcore outfit returns with a new album. [Limited edition beer color vinyl pressing]
The Moms - The Snowbird LP+MP3 (Bar/None)
The Moms is a hard charging three piece from Morris Plains, NJ. Not only are they masters of the mosh pit they also deliver memorable hook-filled songs, often below the two-minute mark.
Springtime Carnivore - Midnight Room LP (Autumn Tone)
Recently released on CD - now available on vinyl. Greta Morgan is Springtime Carnivore. Midnight Room is a continuation of the strain of melodic psychedelic pop found on her self-titled debut.
Eric Johnson - EJ LP (Provogue)
Recently released on CD - now available on vinyl. Eric Johnson shows his acoustic side on his 12th album, which was recorded using piano and steel-string and nylon-string acoustic guitars.
Gavin Degraw - Something Worth Saving LP+MP3 (RCA)
Recently released on CD - now available on vinyl. Sixth album from the Grammy-nominated, multi-platinum selling singer, performer and songwriter.
Feeder - All Bright Electric LP+MP3 (Cooking Vinyl)
Recently released on CD - now available on vinyl. Ninth album from the Welsh rock band.
Kyle Dixon & Michael Stein - Stranger Things: Volume 1 CD (Lakeshore)
"Stranger Things isn't so much a new series on Netflix about a lost boy and the supernatural circumstances surrounding his disappearance, but rather a full-blown cultural phenomenon. Like Game Of Thrones and Breaking Bad before it, Stranger Things is a show that people want to talk about, critique, and dissect. Part of the allure is assuredly the nostalgia: a small town in the 1980s, E.T., Goonies, Alien, The Thing. Trying to pinpoint the inspirations present in the 36 tracks of Stranger Things: Volume 1 is a journey through the work of groups like Goblin, who scored much of horror maestro Dario Argento's work, and Tangerine Dream, who provided the score for a number of films, including Sorcerer, Firestarter, and The Keep. There seems to be an arbitrary distinction for scores that separates them into three categories: those that serve no purpose when played without their visual accompaniment, those that can stand on their own but bring with them strong connotations of the film in question (think Star Wars, Lord of the Rings), and those that are their own self-sustained creation entirely. The score for Stranger Things, like the work of Jon Brion, Yann Tiersen, and Thomas Newman, is of that rare third breed. While certainly many will picture the ordeals of Mike, Nancy, and Chief Hopper while listening, this is music that also stands on its own, a work by turns eerie and sparse, but also tinged in the warm nostalgia of bike rides at dusk and the loyalty of friends. The score is ultimately more than a mood. It's a world unto itself." - Consquence Of Sound. Vinyl due 10/28.
Ryuichi Sakamoto - Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence [OST/Reissue/1983] CD/LP (Milan)
During World War II, British soldier Jack Celliers (David Bowie) is captured by Japanese forces and held in a prison camp. The officers become intrigued with Celliers' open defiance in the face of their old-world ideas about cowardice and shame. Composer Ryuichi Sakamoto scored the film, with a contribution from vocalist David Sylvian.
Reissues & From The Archives
Miles Davis Quintet - Freedom Jazz Dance: The Bootleg Series, Vol. 5 3xCD (Columbia/Legacy)
Triple-disc box set collection chronicling Miles' musical evolution in the studio from 1966-1968 working with his "second great quintet," the latest edition in Columbia/Legacy's Miles Davis Bootleg Series provides an unprecedented look into the artist's creative process, drawing on full session reels including all rehearsals, partial and alternate takes, studio conversation and more.
Elvis Presley - Wonder Of You: With The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra CD (RCA)
As with last year's If I Can Dream, The Wonder Of You focuses on Elvis' unmistakable voice with lush new orchestral accompaniment recorded at Abbey Road Studios in London with producers Don Reedman and Nick Patrick. The Wonder Of You features Elvis' most dramatic original performances augmented with lush new arrangements by The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, and spans a variety of musical styles that Elvis embraced, from rock and gospel to country and ballads. [Vinyl edition due December 2.]
Bette Midler - The Divine Miss M: Deluxe [Reissue/1972] 2xCD (Atlantic)
Expanded and remastered edition of Bette Midler's debut album, featuring a bonus disc of singles, outtakes and demos, as well as new liner notes written by Midler.
Dee Dee Sharp - Songs Of Faith  CD (Abkco)
First-time CD issue of the gospel record from "Mashed Potato Time" songstress, Dee Dee Sharp.
King Crimson - Beat [Reissue/1982] CD+DVD-Audio (Discipline Global Music)
King Crimson - Three Of A Perfect Pair [Reissue/1984] CD+DVD-Audio (Discipline Global Music)
Beat was originally released in June 1982, just eight months after the '80s Crimson lineup debut album Discipline. It marked the first occasion where a King Crimson line-up had remained intact for a two-album stretch and was also the first album by the band to employ a separate producer -- Rhett Davies. The juxtaposition of lyrics is heavily influenced by '50s beat luminaries Jack Kerouac and Neal Cassady. The complex polyrhythmic musical textures of the '80s Crimson, the strength of the songs and the cohesion of the studio performances, all helped the album chart upon release in the US and the UK. Having released two albums in a nine-month period between October 1981 and July 1982, Three Of A Perfect Pair is the final part of the recorded trilogy begun with Discipline and Beat. Each CD reissue includes a bonus DVD-audio disc. Also available for special order: On (and Off) The Road - a 19-disc limited edition box set that presents a complete overview of the enduringly popular 1980's incarnation of King Crimson.
Pantera - The Great Southern Trendkill 2xCD (Elektra)
Pantera - The Great Southern Outtakes LP (Elektra)
Deluxe digitally remastered and expanded 20th anniversary edition. The double-CD set includes the original album remastered, plus a dozen previously unreleased mixes, instrumentals, and live recordings. The Great Southern Outtakes vinyl release gathers nine of these rare tracks and adds a 2016 mix of title track "The Great Southern Trendkill."
Compilations, Best Of's & Sundry Collections
Various Artists - The Musical Mojo Of Dr. John: Celebrating Mac And His Music 2xCD/2xCD+DVD/2xCD+Blu-ray (Concord)
The Musical Mojo Of Dr. John double-disc live recording captures a star-studded concert at New Orleans' Saenger Theatre, with Dr. John joined by a diverse assortment of notable guest artists who perform 22 songs written, recorded and/or popularized by Dr. John during his prolific six-decade career. The performers include Bruce Springsteen, who duets with Dr. John on the 1973 smash "Right Place Wrong Time"; Jason Isbell, who delivers a heartfelt "Blow Wind Blow"; John Fogerty, who performs the raucous Crescent City anthem "New Orleans"; Mavis Staples, who brings gospel fervor to "Lay My Burden Down"; Widespread Panic, who lend musical muscle to "Familiar Reality"; and Ryan Bingham, who delivers a haunting "Back By The River." Fittingly, The Musical Mojo of Dr. John also features memorable performances by several New Orleans legends, including Allen Toussaint, Irma Thomas, Terence Blanchard, John Boutté, Big Chief Monk Boudreaux, The Dirty Dozen Brass Band, George Porter Jr. and Zigaboo Modeliste of the Meters, and Aaron, Charles and Cyril Neville. [Stand-alone DVD edition also available.]
Bright Eyes - The Studio Albums 2000-2011 6xCD/10xLP+MP3 (Saddle Creek)
Six Bright Eyes records -- Fevers And Mirrors (2000), Lifted Or The Story Is In The Soil, Keep Your Ear To The Ground (2002), I'm Wide Awake, It's Morning (2005), Digital Ash In A Digital Urn (2005), Cassadaga (2007), and The People's Key (2007) -- remastered by Bob Ludwig. [CD edition is housed in a foil stamped linen coated board slipcase. Vinyl edition features ten color LPs in tip-on jackets and twelve 8"x10" photo prints.]
For The Holidaze
Sarah McLachlan - Wonderland CD/LP (Verve)
Wonderland features classics such as "Silver Bells" reimagined into a shimmering, orchestrated picturesque tale as well as "Angels We Have Heard On High," a percussive hymn of adoration and Randy Newman's forlorn "Snow" from the 1960s. Emmylou Harris contributes vocals on "Go Tell It On The Mountain", also featuring Martha Wainwright, and "Away In A Manager," a holiday song reinvented as a country shuffle. Members of Canadian quartet, Half Moon Run, play on five tracks and helped McLachlan flesh out some of the arrangements, including "Huron Carol," Canada's oldest Christmas song.
Amy Grant - Tennessee Christmas CD (Amy Grant)
Grant's first holiday album in 20 years. R. Kelly - 12 Nights Of Christmas CD (RCA) "It's gonna be a lot of love-making, and I come with that bearing gifts," the R&B singer said of his first Christmas album.
Pentatonix - A Pentatonix Christmas CD (RCA)
A combination of classic holiday tracks, modern favorites and original music penned by the group.
Rascal Flatts - Greatest Gift Of All CD (Big Machine)
The CMA Awards Vocal Group of the Year nominees present their first Christmas album.
DVD & Bluray
Various Artists - The Musical Mojo Of Dr. John: Celebrating Mac And His Music DVD/Blu-ray (Concord)
The Musical Mojo Of Dr. John was filmed at New Orleans' Saenger Theatre, with Dr. John joined by a diverse assortment of notable guest artists who perform 22 songs written, recorded and/or popularized by Dr. John during his prolific six-decade career.
Santana - Santana IV: Live At The House Of Blues Las Vegas DVD+CD/Blu-ray+CD (Eagle Rock Entertainment)
On March 21st, 2016, a few weeks prior to the release of the Santana IV album, the classic line-up of Santana (Carlos Santana (guitar, vocals); Neal Schon (guitar, vocals); Gregg Rolie (keyboards, vocals); Michael Shrieve (drums); Michael Carabello (congas, backing vocals); with Karl Perazzo (percussion, vocals), Benny Rietveld (bass) with special guest vocalist Ronald Isley) took to the stage at the House Of Blues in Las Vegas. 151 minutes.
Fall Out Boy - The Boys Of Zummer Tour: Live In Chicago DVD/Blu-ray (Eagle Rock Entertainment)
Join multi-platinum band Fall Out Boy as they travel back to their hometown of Chicago for "a mind-blowing audio-visual extravaganza." 80 minutes.