Monday, June 29, 2020

Stream It From The Mountain: Unwed Sailor – Look Alive

As Unwed Sailor, Johnathon Ford (Pedro the Lion/Roadside Monument) has been churning out bass guitar led propulsive post-rock instrumentals for over two decades.  His latest album, Look Alive, is out now on limited cassette and digital via Steadfast Records and on vinyl from Old Bear Records.   
On Look Alive, Ford is joined by guitarist David Swatzell and drummer Matthew Putman; together they have created their most melodically-stirring album yet with moody melodies, elements of 90’s alt-rock and swathes of synths sparkling against a dense shoegaze-inspired background.  The opening track, “Glaring” is a danceable slice of modern New Romantic pop.  Another standout, “Camino Reel” features a fuzzed out bass groove that recalls Ned’s Atomic Dustbin. 
Stream Look Alive here:

Friday, June 12, 2020

REISSUE: Rush – Permanent Waves – 40th Anniversary

Rush, the preeminent prog-rock trio, recently celebrated the 40th anniversary of their iconic album, Permanent Waves, with a deluxe reissue, out now via Mercury/Anthem/UMe. 
Permanent Waves was a bit of a turning point for the Canadian band, as they stepped away from the epic, lengthy suites they were best known for and streamlined their sound with tighter arrangements, shorter song lengths and catchier melodies.  Led by the singles - the dynamic reggae-inspired “The Spirit Of Radio” and instant classic, “Freewill”, as well as the propulsive standout, “Natural Selection”; the album showcased another side of the band that would propel them for years to come.
The 40th Anniversary Deluxe Edition is available now on 3LP or 2CD edition or as a Super Deluxe Edition that includes all of the above and more.  In addition to the 2015 remastering of the original album, the deluxe editions are highlighted by twelve previously unreleased live recordings from the Permanent Waves World Tour in 1980.  Standouts include, “Jacob’s Ladder” and “By-Tor & The Snow Dog” which features a drum solo from the late Neil Peart, and a full side dedicated to the opus, “Cygnus X-1” and “Cygnus X-1 Book II”.  The beautiful package also features an updated design and cover art by Hugh Syme and a 12x12 lyric booklet with tons of unreleased illustrations and photos.
Additionally, the Super Deluxe edition package includes a 20-page 5”x7” notepad as a collectible item, reproduced from a newly discovered piece of Le Studio letterhead. Two tour programs are also included in this package: the official 1980 World Tour program and the very rare, unofficial The Words & Pictures Vol II UK-only tour program. The super deluxe edition box set is rounded out with a 40-page hard cover book with unreleased photos and exclusive liner notes, 3 collectible band member replica backstage laminates, a 24”x36” poster and 3 Neil Peart handwritten lyric sheets.
It’s a testament to Geddy, Alex and Neil that 40 years later, songs like the aptly-titled “The Spirit Of Radio” and “Freewill” from Permanent Waves have been in rotation on rock radio since their release.  This box set will help to ensure their “spirit” lives on for another 40 years!
Check out 3 Songs from the 40th Anniversary Reissue of Permanent Waves here:
“By-Tor & The Snow Dog: (Live in London, 1980 / Audio):



“Natural Science” (Live in Manchester, 1980 / Audio): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mFWkdqShM5c

“The Spirit Of Radio” (Live In Manchester, 1980 / Audio): https://youtu.be/KIkr1x95wtg

Friday, May 29, 2020

3 Songs: On Repeat - Extended Edition


Damien Jurado – “Ochoa” (The Seattle singer-songwriter continues his prolific tear with his third album in as many years – and fifteenth overall - with the release of What’s New, Tomboy?, out now via Mama Bird Recording Co.  Assisted by multi-instrumentalist Josh Gordon – who provides some expressive bass lines among other things – Jurado weaves stories like no other, blending classic pop and folk to perfection once again.) https://tunes.mamabirdrecordingco.com/album/whats-new-tomboy

Broken Social Scene – “Superconnected” (The Canadian indie rock institution played the Third Man Records’ Blue Room Stage in June of 2018 and the celebratory 5-song set was recorded, mixed and mastered live, in real time, direct to vinyl.  The set list includes fan favorite “Cause = Time”, “Stay Happy” from their most recent album, 2017’s Hug Of Thunder and the bittersweet standout track, “Superconnected”, heard here.)  https://brokensocialscene.bandcamp.com/album/live-at-third-man-records 

Fake Names – “First Everlasting” (Fake Names is a new supergroup consisting of punk rock royalty; with guitarists Brian Baker of Minor Threat, Dag Nasty, and Bad Religion and Michael Hampton of S.O.A., Embrace, and One Last Wish, along with vocalist Dennis Lyxzén of Refused and drummer Johnny Temple of Girls Against Boys and Soulside.  Together they create a power-pop fuelled brand of punk rock heavy on harmonies and hooks on their stunning self-titled debut album, out now on Epitaph Records.) http://epitaph.com/artists/fake-names/release/fake-names

The Garden – “Clench To Stay Awake” (The Nevada-based duo consisting of twin brothers Wyatt & Fletcher Shears recently released their album titled, Kiss My Super Bowl Ring, via Epitaph Records.  The brothers Shears create a garden of sounds that includes everything from throat-shredding hardcore punk, spastic electronica, hip-hop and glimmers of alt-pop.  Check out the explosive and empowering opening track here.)    https://thegardenmusic.bandcamp.com/album/kiss-my-super-bowl-ring

Friday, May 15, 2020

REISSUE: Redd Kross – Phaseshifter & Show World



Redd Kross was formed in the late 70’s by brothers Jeff and Steve McDonald.  What started out as a teenage punk band grew into a power-pop powerhouse.  The band released their seventh album titled, Beyond The Door, last year to great acclaim.  This year marks forty years as a band and to celebrate, Third Man Records has just reissued their excellent 90’s albums, Phaseshifter and Show World on vinyl for the very first time in the U.S.
I was first introduced to Redd Kross and their 1993 major label debut, Phaseshifter, during their unforgettable live performance of standout single, “Jimmy’s Fantasy” on MTV’s short-lived Jon Stewart Show.  Their punk-informed power-pop had boatloads of killer melodies and elements of 60’s psych-pop which they honed to pop perfection on the criminally-underrated 1997 album, Show World. 
Pick up the 180g vinyl reissues of Phaseshifter and Show World via Third Man Records here: https://thirdmanstore.com/bands/redd-kross
Check out 3 Songs from Redd Kross below!
“Jimmy’s Fantasy” (taken from Phaseshifter and starring actor Jason Lee):

“Mess Around” (taken from): https://youtu.be/2_YDSaxJGeA
“Lady In The Front Row” (taken from Phaseshifter): https://youtu.be/gqRLmsFnKG8

Friday, April 03, 2020

Stream It From The Mountain: Fullbloods – Soft And Virtual Touch

Fullbloods is the indie-pop project of K.C.-based songwriter, producer and multi-instrumentalist Ross Brown (also of Shy Boys).  Brown’s third album, Soft And Virtual Touch is out today on High Dive Records; available digitally, on black vinyl and limited edition blue cassette.
The lushly-layered “headphones-worthy” album - filled with blissful pop melodies with weird 70’s-inspired synths and elements of prog-pop - is led by the smooth, 70’s-indebted standout, “Worry Entertainment” and the bubbly single, “Present By Proxy”; both of which feature the Cuíca, a distinctly unique Portuquse percussion instrument. 
Grab your headphones and escape this crazy world for while with Fullbloods new album!
Stream Soft And Vitual Touch here:       

Friday, March 27, 2020

REISSUE: Tears For Fears – Songs From The Big Chair - 35th Anniversary

80’s pop-rock duo Tears For Fears recently celebrated the 35th anniversary of their breakthrough sophomore album Songs From The Big Chair.  Led by the absolutely massive and still inescapable singles, “Shout”, Everybody Wants To Rule The World and “Head Over Heels”, Songs From The Big Chair is one of the absolute best pop albums of the 80’s.  To celebrate the occasion, Mercury/UMe has recently released the album on picture disc vinyl and a reissue of the out of print 5CD/1DVD Super Deluxe box set, originally released in 2014 for the 30th anniversary.   

The Super Deluxe version is the definitive edition of this highly-influential album as it is loaded with extras.  Disc one is comprised of the original album, remastered in 2014 as well as nine B-sides from the era including standouts, “The Marauders”, “The Conflict” and the piano version of “The Working Hour”.  Disc two is made up of single and radio edits of the songs as well as an audio interview with Curt and Roland.  Disc three features remixes and extended version of the songs including the Urban mix of “Everybody Wants To Rule The World” and Dub and Acapella versions of “Shout”.  Disc four is worth the price of admission with fourteen unreleased recordings including early mixes and versions of the songs recorded with Richard Skinner and six songs recorded live at Massey Hall.  Disc five includes both a new 5.1 audio mix (mixed by Steven Wilson)  and the 2014 stereo mix of Songs From The Big Chair that make these already huge songs sound even clearer and more incredible.  The sixth and final disc is a DVD with an interview with producer Chris Hughes, the “Scenes From The Big Chair” documentary, BBC TV appearances and the music videos that helped make Tears For Fears stars in the MTV age.  Completing the package is a replica tour program and a booklet filled with rare photos and new interviews with Roland and Curt.   
Songs From The Big Chair, with its huge pop hooks and layered, nuanced sound proved that Roland Orzabel and Curt Smith were ahead of their time and after 35 years, these songs live on and will live on for another 35 years with this incredible box set. 
Revisit the very 80’s video for “Head Over Heels” now newly remastered in HD here:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CsHiG-43Fzg

Friday, March 20, 2020

3 Songs: On Repeat

Aaron Beckham – “Jagged Coast” (After releasing a couple of records of alt-country and folk music on his own, L.A. singer-songwriter and filmmaker Aaron Beckham recently released a new EP titled, Songs From The Triangle Room via Devil In The Woods.  The eight-song EP – produced by Jason Lytle of Grandaddy - acts as the perfect introduction and a greatest hits compilation of sorts, as it collects both new material and older songs that were re-recorded specifically for this release) https://aaronbeckum.bandcamp.com/album/songs-from-a-triangle-room  

Her Silo – “I Should Be Ashes” (Her Silo is the moniker used by Seattle indie-rock singer-songwriter Jessica Lambert, who recently released her very promising debut album, Don’t Forget The Heart That’s Beating.  The album was produced by indie-folk artist Joshua James who performs on the album as well and reveals Lambert as an emerging voice with her melancholic yet colorful folk-leaning alternative rock that recalls Cat Power at times.  Lyrically, she paints poetic pictures of anxiety and loneliness that are relatable with catchy melodies that will get stuck in your head.) https://hersilo.bandcamp.com/album/dont-forget-the-heart-thats-beating

Pluralone – “Was Never There” (Pluralone is the solo recording moniker of former Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist Josh Klinghoffer.  The songwriter and multi-instrumentalist was supposed to tour - in support of his debut album, To Be One With You - with Pearl Jam this Spring but the tour was canceled due to the current global pandemic.  The album, which features guests performances from Jack Irons, Flea and Eric Avery of Jane’s Addiction, was released last fall on ORG Music and is a layered and gorgeous dream-pop trip; the perfect, transcendent soundtrack for your self-quarantined new reality.) https://orgmusiclabel.bandcamp.com/album/to-be-one-with-you
Stream: https://orgmusiclabel.bandcamp.com/track/was-never-there

Friday, March 13, 2020

3 Songs: On Repeat


Monophonics – “Chances” (After last year’s great solo debut, neo-soul vocal powerhouse Kelly Finnigan returns today with his Bay Area based band Monophonics, and their fourth album, It’s Only Us, via Colemine Records.  Alongside a powerful message of unity in these trying times, the new album goes heavy on classic soul and psych-rock with elements of funk for a timeless sounding album and their best, most meaningful effort yet.) https://monophonics.bandcamp.com/album/its-only-us

Caroline Rose – “Do You Think We’ll Last Forever?” (New York singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Caroline Rose once again changes up her sound with her fourth album, Superstar, out now on New West Records. Where her last album was giddy with 90’s pop melodies and elements of punk and surf-rock, Superstar is just as energetic but focuses on shiny 80’s synths and super-danceable rhythms.  Lyrically, Rose develops a concept about fame, fortune and the good, bad and ugly therein with her usual snappy wit and knack for an infectious melody.) https://carolinerosemusic.bandcamp.com/album/superstar       

Jupe Jupe – “How Could We Both Be In Love” (Seattle synthpoppers Jupe Jupe recently released a new EP, titled, Nightfall.  The 5-song EP – recorded and mixed by Matt Bayles - is melancholic yet made to make you move with driving beats and vocal melodies that switch between soaring and swooning with ease.  Check out the standout track here, with its 80’s dance club ready beat and swirling saxophone solos; visions of Depeche Mode, the Cure and MTV’s 120 Minutes will dance in your head.) https://jupejupemusic.bandcamp.com/album/nightfall      


Thursday, March 05, 2020

SHOW ALERT: Dashboard Confessional and The Get Up Kids @ Newport Music Hall 3/6

This year marks the 20th anniversary of Dashboard Confessional and to celebrate, Chris Carraba recently released the career-spanning compilation, The Best Ones Of The Best Ones, which features twenty tracks taken from all seven studio albums, the So Impossible and The Drowning EPs, and the band’s legend-making MTV Unplugged performance. 
Additionally, the band has embarked on a massive tour where they will perform breakout album, The Places You Have Come to Fear the Most and fan-favorite A Mark, A Mission, A Brand, A Scar in their entirety on select nights.  Dashboard Confessional and emo-era favorites The Get Up Kids - who recently released their new album, Problems, last year to great acclaim – will make a stop at Newport Music Hall in Columbus on Friday, March 6.
Here are 3 Songs from Dashboard Confessional and The Get Up Kids to get you ready for the show!
Dashboard Confessional – “Screaming Infidelities (Live in Hartford, Connecticut, 2001)”:


Dashboard Confessional - “The Sharp Hint of New Tears” taken from the MTV Unplugged performance:


The Get Up Kids – “Satellite” taken from Problems, out now on Polyvinyl Records:

Monday, March 02, 2020

Stream It From The Mountain: Thighmaster – Between The Knees And Squeeze

Thighmaster is an enigmatic new Lawrence, KS-based garage-pop band led by Maxfield Yoder of Dean Monkey & the Dropouts and Plains.  Their debut release titled, Between The Knees And Squeeze, is out now on High Dive Records. 
The 7-song collection with titles such as, “Jane Fonda You” and The Good, The Bad, The Boxflex” evokes neon leotards, jazzercise on VHS and late night infomercials.  Musically, Yoder and crew blend hip-shaking post-punk rhythms, dream pop bliss and surf rock jangle for an impressive debut.   
Stream Between The Knees And Squeeze here:

Friday, February 28, 2020

3 Songs: On Repeat



Hughes Family Band – “Death Of Me” (The Milwaukee-based band - featuring members of Iron Pizza, Sex Scenes, Bad Wig and Appleseed - foregoes their punk rock pedigree to create honky tonkin’ country-leaning rock and roll on their debut 7” single, out now on Good Land Records.  Led by the impressive A-side here, their brand of horn-laced country rock recalls Rolling Stones and the rollicking 70’s bar bands and is a lot of fun.  I can’t wait to hear more from the Hughes Family!) https://goodlandrecords.bandcamp.com/album/death-of-me

Ghosty – “Prodigal Sun” (After a long seven year wait, Ghosty, the Lawrence, Kansas indie-pop trio led by Andrew Connor has finally returned with new music in the form of a 3-song EP titled, Prodigal Sun, out today.  The songs were recorded in 2014, feature the assistance of guitartist/keyboardist Ross Brown of Shy Boys and Fullbloods, and were meant to follow up their excellent self-titled album released the year prior but never saw the light until now.  Listen to the standout title track here with its bright synth melodies and danceable beat, here.) https://ghostysounds.com/album/prodigal-sun-ep

Black Market Brass – “War Room” (The Minneapolis-based instrumental Afrobeat/funk hybrids return today with their stunning sophomore album, Undying Thirst, via Colemine Records.  Boasting 11 members, they create a towering wall of sound with lyrical horn melodies, complex yet funky strutting grooves, psychedelic guitar freakouts and strange electronics bursting through the cracks.  Their take on the West African sound of the 70’s is laced with a bit of a punk rock spirit and is infectiously danceable.) https://www.blackmarketbrass.com/

Monday, February 24, 2020

REISSUE: Neneh Cherry - Raw Like Sushi (30th Anniversary)

Last year, 80’s pop singer Neneh Cherry’s debut album, Raw Like Sushi turned 30 year old.  To celebrate, Virgin/UMe recently reissued the highly-influential album as a deluxe 3LP or 3CD set that has been remastered at Abbey Road.    
At the end of the 80’s and at the dawn of the 90’s, Neneh Cherry created a fresh, amalgamated pop sound that dipped equally into R&B, dance and hip-hop with her debut album - Raw Like Sushi – that spawned five hit singles, led by the incredible smash hit, “Buffalo Stance”.  Other hit singles include, “Manchild” (produced by Robert Del Naja of Massive Attack), “Heart” and “Kisses On The Wind”.  The 2 discs of bonus tracks are highlighted by 5 remixes of “Buffalo Stance” and remixes of “Manchild” by Massive Attack and Smith N Mighty.  
The deluxe box set also includes a 48-page 12x12 book loaded with photos from the era and new interviews and liner notes that help to shine a light on the album’s worldwide appeal and lasting legacy. 
To order of for more info: https://nenehcherry.lnk.to/RLS30YD
Watch the video for “Buffalo Stance” here:


Stream the bonus track, “Heart (Club Mix)” here:

Friday, February 21, 2020

3 Songs: On Repeat – featuring a video premiere from Dayton’s The Nautical Theme!


The Nautical Theme – “Break My Fall” (Dayton-based duo, The Nautical Theme are set to release their sophomore album, Lows And Highs, next month.  In anticipation, they’ve released the lush lead single, “Break My Fall” and I am pleased to premiere the video for the standout track, below.  The new album sees vocalist/keyboardist Tesia Mallory and vocalist/guitarist Matt Shetler broaden their stunning harmony-rich folk-pop sound with fuller, more dynamic arrangements that include live drums for the first time.) https://thenauticaltheme.com/   
Watch:



The Flaming Lips – “A Spoonful Weighs A Ton” (Last year marked the 20th anniversary of The Flaming Lip’s album, The Soft Bulletin.  To celebrate the occasion, Warner Records and the band recently released a live performance of the album in its entirety that was recorded in 2016 at Red Rocks with The Colorado Symphony and conducted by André de Riddler.  Alongside a full 68-piece orchestra and 57-person choir, the veteran band with psych-pop leanings transforms the album’s songs into majestic new beings.  Check out the cinematic and syrupy sweet strings that balance the fuzzed-out bass on “A Spoonful Weighs A Ton”, taken from the live album, here.) https://flaminglips.lnk.to/SoftBulletinLive

Ethan Gruska – "Enough For Now (feat. Phoebe Bridgers)” (L.A. singer-songwriter Ethan Gruska used to play in The Belle Brigade alongside his sister Barbara who now is a touring member of Foo Fighters.  Gruska makes his stellar solo debut with En Garde, out now on Warner Records.  He is joined by several guests on the album including Moses Sumney, Lianne La Havas and Phoebe Bridgers - on the standout track heard here – but its Ethan’s breathy vocal style and sophisticated synth-driven jazz and R&B-informed brand of pop music that shines the brightest.) https://ethangruska.lnk.to/EnGarde

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Stream It From The Mountain: Restless Habs – Taking The Fast Way Down

After releasing 6 EPs over the last 11 years, Cleveland indie-punk veterans, Restless Habs,  finally released their long-awaited debut album, Taking The Fast Way Down, last week on Steadfast Records.   
The wait was worth it, as the trio - featuring Ken Blaze and Peter Woodward of Cleveland pop-core legends the Unknown and drummer Anthony Panico (ex-Sleepwalker Defense) - create an incredibly ear-worming brand of melodic Midwestern pop-punk with an emphasis on volume and sing-along choruses.  Standouts include the aptly-titled tracks, “Casual And Reckless” and “Anthem” with their driving rhythms and bombastic, nostalgia-laced hooks. 
The album is available digitally and on limited edition CD, cassette and 140gm vinyl, including an opaque white colorway limited to 100 copies. 
To order, please visit:  https://www.steadfastrecords.net/
Stream Taking The Fast Way Down here:

Friday, February 14, 2020

3 Songs: On Repeat

Ebony Tusks – “HDF” (Ebony Tusks is the emerging Lawrence, KS based trio, consisting of DJ/producer Daniel Smith and vocalist/producers Geese Giesecke and Marty Hilliard.  Their recently released single, “HDF” is a booming slice of hard core hip-hop with minimalist electronics and sharp, unnerving commentary.  The single  - featuring the instrumental on the B-side - is available on 7” vinyl from High Dive Records and cassette from Intelligent Sound.  Look for their debut album later in 2020!) https://highdiverecords.bandcamp.com/album/ebony-tusks-hdf

Christopher Paul Stelling – “Trouble Don’t Follow Me” (CPS, the NYC folk-rock troubadour is joined in the studio by Ben Harper, who produced his new album, Best Of Luck, out now on Anti Records.  Much like the bombastic blues-rock of standout track, "Hear Me Calling" and the soulful and anthemic single, heard here; Harper helps Stelling to expand his sound further and the result is upbeat and hopeful despite dealing with heavier lyrical themes and easily his best effort yet.) https://christopherpaulstelling.com/       

Andy Shauf – “Things I Do” (The Canadian singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist recently released his highly-anticipated fourth album, The Neon Skyline, out now on Anti Records.  Shauf lends his stellar storytelling to a concept album that follows a night in a downtrodden guy’s life with every subtle detail of the ups and downs chronicled as only Shauf can.  Musically, he blends breezy folk with soft rock touchstones such as woodwinds and organs that evoke the lamp-lit lounge of the album’s title.) https://andyshauf.bandcamp.com/album/the-neon-skyline     
Stream: https://andyshauf.bandcamp.com/track/things-i-do

Friday, February 07, 2020

REISSUE: Nirvana – MTV Unplugged In New York 25th Anniversary

Late last year, Nirvana’s legendary MTV Unplugged In New York album celebrated its 25th anniversary.  Originally released in 1994 and recorded just five months before Kurt Cobain’s death, the album quickly became a way to mourn and pay tribute to the troubled yet iconic songwriter.  In honor, Geffen/Ume released an expanded and remastered reissue of the album as a 2LP set pressed onto 180g vinyl housed in a gatefold jacket with silver foil embossing in November. 
The set is highlighted by the inclusion of five rehearsal performances previously only available on the DVD release, including, “Polly”, “Plateau” and “Pennyroyal Tea”, as well as plenty of between song banter, for an intimate peek behind the curtain.  Additionally, a download of the expanded album is included on an album cover sticker. 
For more info or to order: https://nirvana.lnk.to/Unplugged25
To celebrate, here are 3 Songs from Nirvana’s MTV Unplugged In New York album:     
“Come As You Are (Live On MTV Unplugged, 1993 / Rehearsal)”:


“Where Did You Sleep Last Night (Live On MTV Unplugged Unedited)”:


“Lake Of Fire (Live On MTV Unplugged, 1993 / Unedited)”:

Friday, December 20, 2019

Top 10 Albums of 2019


BerwangerWatching A Garden Die

Better Oblivion Community CenterSelf-Titled

Big ThiefU.F.O.F. & Two Hands

The Claypool Lennon DeliriumSouth Of Reality

Empty MoonThe Empty Moon Story

Dori FreemanEvery Single Star

Radar StateStrays

that dog.Old LP

Vampire WeekendFather Of The Bride

Kanye WestJESUS IS KING

Thursday, December 19, 2019

Top 10 Reissues of 2019

Miles DavisThe Complete Birth Of The Cool http://www.atlasandtheanchor.com/2019/06/reissue-miles-davis-complete-birth-of.html
Modern EnglishMesh & Lace and After The Snow (review to come…)
Slick RickThe Great Adventures Of Slick Rick http://www.atlasandtheanchor.com/2019/05/reissue-slick-rick-great-adventures-of.html

Top 5 EPs of 2019

Friday, December 06, 2019

3 Songs: On Repeat


Spoken In Tongues – “Bluff”  (This new duo is made up of punk rock vets Billy Power of Blenderhead and Chris Wible of Everdown, whose debut album, The Nail That Sticks Up Will Be Hammered Down, was recently released on cassette via Cleveland’s Steadfast Records.  Together the duo reconciles themes of death, loss and growing older with short and simple blasts of catchy, pop-forward punk rock.  Additionally, this album is the first in a planned trilogy of albums so be on the lookout for more!) https://spokenintongues.bandcamp.com/album/the-nail-that-sticks-up-will-be-hammered-down-digital-download

Junkyard – “Pushed You Too Far” (What’s better than new music from an old favorite?  Old new music from an old favorite!  Junkyard were an underrated band from the 80’s hard rock scene who released an excellent new album in 2017 and follow that up with the release of Old Habits Die Hard, out now on Acetate Records.  This new album collects previously-unreleased songs recorded in 1992 meant to become their third album but was lost in the shuffle once grunge rock took over the scene.  It’s a shame because Junkyard led by the raspy howl of vocalist David Roach and Bad Religion guitarist Brian Baker created a raw and raucous brand of blues-drenched hard rock played with a punk rock spirit.)

Cold War Kids – “Complainer” (Indie rock favorites Cold War Kids recently returned with their eighth album, New Age Norms 1, via their own label, CWKTWO/AWAL.  The new album is the first in a trilogy of albums and shows the band doubling down on their irresistible pop hooks along with danceable funk grooves as heard here on album highlight, “Complainer” and on the Prince-like standout track, “Waiting For Your Love” that puts vocalist Nathan Willett’s falsetto in the spotlight.) www.coldwarkids.com  

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

3 Songs: On Repeat from Bob Dylan (Featuring Johnny Cash) – Travelin’ Thru 1967-1969: The Bootleg Series Vol. 15

The next chapter in Bob Dylan’s long-running Bootleg Series is titled, Bob Dylan (Featuring Jonny Cash) – Travelin’ Thru 1967-1969: The Bootleg Series Vol. 15, and is out now on Columbia/Legacy Recordings.  While not as celebrated (no Scorsese-produced Netflix film) and not as hefty as the Royal Thunder Revue reissue from earlier this year, Travelin’ Thru is more exciting as it chronicles the years between 1967 and 1969, which saw the release of the acclaimed albums, John Wesley Harding, Nashville Skyline and Self Portrait.  The 3CD or 3LP set features 47 previously unreleased recordings including outtakes, rehearsals and alternate takes from those sessions and is highlighted by recordings of Dylan and Johnny Cash together. 
The first disc focuses on alternate versions of songs like, “All Along The Watchtower”, “Lay Lady Lay” and “I Am A Lonesome Hobo” from John Wesley Harding and Nashville Skyline, highlighted by the previously-unheard “Western Road”, an outtake of the Nashville Skyline sessions. 
The second and third discs are comprised of Dylan’s country & western collaborations with the legendary Johnny Cash.  While only their duet, “North Country Girl” made it onto the album Nashville Skyline, the dynamic duo left behind several songs including covers of “Mountain Dew”, songs by Jimmie Rogers and Cash’s classics, “Ring Of Fire” and “I Walk The Line”.  Other highlights include, live performances of “Living The Blues” and “Girl From The North Country” from the 1969 debut episode of The Johnny Cash Show as well as an alternate take of “Nashville Skyline Rag” featuring Earl Scruggs.  Completing the package are tons of photos and insightful liner notes from Colin Escott.   
For more info: https://www.bobdylan.com/
Here are 3 Songs from Travelin’ Thru.  Enjoy!

“I Threw It All Away (Live On The Johnny Cash TV Show)”:


“Lay, Lady, Lay (Take 2 - Alternate Version)”: https://youtu.be/vgEaRPaGqWM

 “Ring Of Fire (Outtake)”: https://youtu.be/x5SxmXsRyCQ

Friday, November 08, 2019

3 Songs: On Repeat


Joy Cleaner – “Dramatization” (The New Jersey indie rock trio return today with their highly-anticipated sophomore album, You’re So Jaded, via Jigsaw Records.  90’s nostalgia is in full effect as their brand of jangly power-pop packs a punch, like a punk-informed Gin Blossoms, with crunchy, alt-rock riffs and infectious pop hooks clamoring for the spotlight.  On repeat, indeed!) https://jigsawrecords.bandcamp.com/album/pzl165-joy-cleaner-youre-so-jaded   

Vetiver – “Swaying” (Andy Cabic recently released his seventh album, Up On High, making his label debut with Mama Bird Recordings.  The new collection of songs sees Cabic return to basics with his folk-rock roots and his smooth voice combining with elements of jangly college rock, heartland rock and 70’s singer-songwriter faire for a breezy listen and one of the best albums of his career.  Stream the Petty-esque and aptly-titled standout single here.) https://tunes.mamabirdrecordingco.com/album/up-on-high   

Big Thief – “Not” (The Brooklyn folk-rock quartet – led by the vulnerable yet powerful vocals and poetic lyrics of Adrianne Lenker – recently released their second full-length album this year.   The album titled, Two Hands, is out now on 4AD and is rawer and ragged, both lyrically and musically, than its predecessor, U.F.O.F.; perfectly capturing their live energy.  With Two Hands, Big Thief has released an Album Of The Year worthy effort, their second just this year.  Listen to the dynamic, 6-minute single here.) http://www.bigthief.net/