The Underhill Family Orchestra – Tell Me That You Love Me 2018

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It’s the first week of May and it’s approaching 90 degrees here in New York City. After a bitter winter, the entire city is humming with joy and excitement. It’s been a real treat seeing the smiles on everyone’s faces and the bright colors on everyone’s bodies. It’s the perfect time to throw on The Underhill Family Orchestra’s new album Tell Me That You Love Me. The Mobile-based collective has an intense and irresistable chemistry. The songs on this album are full of chemical reactions that are a pleasure to be hold. Truly, the album is a testament to the power of people working together.

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The recording process marked a first for the band—working with a producer, Los Angeles-based Noah Shain, who helped the group realize its musical vision. “It was wonderful. It’s like you’re adding another person to the band,” says Laney. “You’re saying ‘Hey, what do you think about this?’ to someone whose only vested interest is making a record. We were okay letting him take the reins. Noah is a drummer, and he was able to help out with Joe and Roy, who are already militant about how they work together,” he laughs. “They’re an amazing rhythm section, they’re so smart and are a really important part of our sound, and Noah picked up on that right away,” he adds. “It was a unique experience, and we were grateful.”

Opening track “Oak Holler” is a three-minute introduction to the timbre of the album; the anthem firmly plants the band’s flag in a landscape of harmony crafted through diversity and features all of the band members’ voices swirling at its conclusion. “That’s a super real Underhill moment,” recalls Laney. “There’s something visceral about a group of people singing the same words.” At the end of the album version of track “When The Trumpet Sounds,” Joelle’s grandmother, Maw Maw Ida, recounts the story of the day before her husband’s death. “She was telling us an embattled but sentimental story, and I saw so much art in that. When we were tracking the vocals with Noah in Los Angeles, he asked us how we wanted to end the song and I set the phone down and played that clip. Joelle was in tears, Noah was quiet, it was a nice moment for all of us,” says Laney. “I saw this vision I had for the track really affect people.” The song was a therapeutic one to write and employs religious imagery to illustrate a call to reunite with a loved one, an idea that lends itself to not only the literal, but to the metaphysical as well.

thanks for the submission Zach .

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Horse Feathers – Appreciation 2018

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Portland-based band Horse Feathers have announced the release of their forthcoming album Appreciation, out May 4 via Kill Rock Stars. Justin Ringle has never been one to hide away the struggles he has faced in creating music. Following the release of Cynic’s New Year in 2012 there followed a long period of disillusionment during which he thought his career was over. Then in 2014, he surprised many with the release of So It Is With Us, an album on which he allowed the joy of making music to shape his songwriting. Four years on and life’s worries (those who are very conscious of advancing years will appreciate them) have naturally played their part in shaping his songwriting.

Despite the dark picture this may paint, the first single “Without Applause” is anything but. Ringle’s new rhythm section shows off their Northern Soul sensibilities to great effect in a swirl of Hammond organ, strings, and horns that leaves the listener filled with joy and warmth.

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On Appreciation, their sixth full-length and the fifth on venerable independent label Kill Rock Stars, the signifiers of the band are there: Lead singer Justin Ringle’s warm tenor and lyrics that speak of work, love, and other struggles. But on this album less of the song dynamics are achieved with strings and more with an exciting new rhythm section steeped in Northern Soul. Longtime violinist Nathan Crockett and keyboardist Dustin Dybvig provide continuity, but much of Appreciation feels like the best of Ringle’s previous musical ideas just took a giant step into a larger arena.

Recorded primarily in Kentucky (at La-La Land Studios in Louisville and Shangri-La Studios in Lexington), the new album features instrumentalists J. Tom Hnatow, Robby Cosenza and R&B vocalist Joslyn Hampton, who helped make Appreciation a mixture of strutting ‘70s-style country-pop and supple soul.

Lord Huron – Vide Noir 2018

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Lord Huron have well and truly stepped up to the next level on their third outing. The heart-wrenching folk is still there, but this time it’s laced with questioning promise – and we are here for it.
Calling your third album vide noir is a bold move. Not only does it immediately present a needed translation, but once done so, presents you with one of humanities biggest fears – a black void.
So, how do Lord Huron approach such grandiose ideas? Rather spectacularly actually. The ethereal harp and choral vocals twinned gently plucked strings that ring in this third outing immediately project ideas that may sit on a station way out of reach, but it feels like Vide Noir isn’t supposed to be received this way.
While “Lost In Time and Space’” feels just like…

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…that – a wandering journey through the cosmos with an angelic soundtrack, instead, it, and the album after it offers you the opportunity to delve into what your life might pertain.

Though it does sit on the expected side of the sonic line for Lord Huron, it’s “Never Ever” where the engines really kick in. A distorted rollicking number that drives like a The Killers track, it has all the makings of an epic run and is just the beginning for Vide Noire.

The sound of “Never Ever” is swiftly followed up by the one-two of “Ancient Names (parts I & II)”. Which feature more pounding drums and determined instrumentation from the first part, but it’s the second part where the energy really comes through and Lord Huron feel like a beast unleashed.

While the folk-essence lies below and often comes through in its truest form, the developments are clear and passionately welcomed all across Vide Noir. Where a band like Mumford & Sons abandoned ship from their beginnings to a mixed result, it sounds like Lord Huron have managed to evolve forward incorporating electric elements in a major way without forfeiting any kind of integrity.

Father John Misty – God’s Favourite Customer 2018

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Father John Misty will release God’s Favorite Customer, his fourth album worldwide on June 1st, 2018 through Sub Pop, with the exception of Europe through Bella Union.

The 10 track effort features the previously released “Mr. Tillman,” along with highlights “Disappointing Diamonds Are the Rarest of Them All” and “Just Dumb Enough to Try.” God’s Favorite Customer was produced by Tillman and recorded with Jonathan Rado, Dave Cerminara, and Trevor Spencer and was written largely in New York between Summer 2016 and Winter 2017.

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Califone – All My Friends Are Funeral Singers 2009

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So the other day i pulled this out from my collection only because i was sifting through it and thought ” shit i haven’t played these guys for what seems like years” So on the player it went and it still holds well ,

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I believe this is what Wilco would of sounded and developed into if they had the balls . if you haven’t came across these guys yet then i would highly recommend starting with this album . i know its not going to be everyone’s cup of tea but its a cup of tea that should be sipped .

 

The Wynntown Marshalls – After All These Years 2017

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As the title “After All These Years” might suggest, this is a retrospective set marking Edinburgh’s ringing guitars Americana outfit’s ten years together, during which time The Wynntown Marshals have released three albums and assorted EPs as well as having gone through some line-up changes. They’re represented in this 16 track collection that, along with rarities and fan favourites, also includes three previously unreleased new numbers pointing to the road ahead.

It opens with the country rock Low Country Comedown with its thoughts of home and the life of a band on the road from their 2013 The Long Haul album, singer Keith Benzie dust-hoarse vocals recalling Miracle Legion’s Mark Mulcahy. That album also offers up the Byrdsian family-themed Canada, the quieter, more reflective Curtain Call with its tale of a magic trick gone wrong and the Neil Young influenced Tide.

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Debut album Westerner yields three numbers, the gently chugging pedal steel coloured Ballad of Jayne, the spare, slow-paced seven-minute Thunder In The Valley and the chirpier jangle of Snowflake with its Sweetheart of the Rodeo flavours.

Their most recent, critically acclaimed album was 2015’s The End of the Golden Age from which four tracks feature: Being Lazy, a brass warmed number from now departed bassist Murdoch Macleod, with its local landmark references and a dash of glockenspiel. The Gram Parsons influenced Red Clay Hill, with Hannah Elton-Wall from the Redlands Palomino Company on harmonies. The nautical-themed piano whale hunting ballad Moby Doll, and, of course, the jangling title track itself.

Although titled after the opening track of their self-titled 2007 EP debut, the number itself doesn’t figure, though you do get The Burning Blue, a song themed around WWII RAF pilots. Also from that EP is 11:15, a song about the storm and floods of 1829 that devastated farms from Inverness to Montrose that opens with rumbling drums before breaking out into the trademark chiming guitars.

Which leaves the new numbers, the first up being Your Time, guitar and organ underpinning a wistful song about an unequal relationship, followed, some tracks later, by the unrequited love of the yearning Odessa with its organ backing and a fine guitar solo. The final new track closes the album and is, in fact, a recording of Different Drug from the debut EP, the new line-up bringing a fuller, more relaxed sound with the addition of keyboards and more fluid guitar.

They don’t get the wider commercial acclaim they deserve but, as the sticker on the front of the sleeve says, they truly are “Europe’s best Americana band.” So, here’s to the next decade.

We highly recommend that you purchase this album .

Actual Wolf – Faded Days 2017

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Based in Oakland, CA, but born and raised in Minnesota’s Mesabi Iron Range – the same fertile region as Bob Dylan – indie folk-rocker Actual Wolf (Eric Pollard) shines brightly on his national debut Faded Days. Lush and expansive, it conjures the classic cosmic country albums of the past with it’s layered vocals and sweeping choruses. The album plays out like a vintage record store find, with a care to storytelling and payoff choruses that are in scarce supply these days.

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Album highlights include the Springsteen-esque “Be My Love,” which segues into the hazy vintage Neil Young & Crazy Horse vibe of the first single, “Baby Please.” “Little Runaway” is a classic rock radio cut (if you grew up in the ’70s, that is) and the wistful title track speaks of lost opportunities and old relationships, with the chorus asking “Can you still get high?” Dividing his days between music and being one of the leading extract/hash makers in the Northern California Bay Area (working for a boutique provider growing rare/hard-to-cultivate cannabis strains), Actual Wolf is the latest addition to the Red House Records’ artist roster. Actual Wolf has cultivated, cut and cured these songs with the same patience as that of a grower. The album is subtly informed by that breadth of different atmospheres as much as it is richly colored by the array of collaborators: Jeremy Hanson (Tapes ‘n Tapes, Tungsten), Jake Hanson (Gramma’s Boyfriend; 12 Rods; Alaska), Steve Garrington (Low, the Erik Berry Duo), Ditch Kurtz (a pedal steel guitarist from Nashville), with additional vocals by Al Church.

massive thank you to Red House Records .

John Murry – A Short History Of Decay 2017

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Some artists become legends. They become household names. Most people will know at least one or two of their songs. For whatever reason their mainstream success transcends commercialism, and they end up transforming popular culture and by extension, culture at large. These artists’ names become adjectives. Dylan-esque. Beatles-esque.

Australian enfant terrible Nick Cave may not have quite reached that stage, but he’s close. Most music lovers will immediately understand it when you call something ‘Nick Cave-esque”.

Of course, the adjective itself can quickly become a crutch for lazy reviewers, and all too often for artists as well. So it’s a pleasant surprise to hear a release that can be called Nick Cave-esque but still very much marches to its own beat.

John Murry’s life story in itself is the stuff of legends. From an unhappy, over-medicated childhood to drug addiction, musical success, and another fall into addiction and even prison, his life story reads like a book. He also was adopted into William Faulkner’s family at birth (a cousin of his mother). John certainly need not look far for inspiration.

A Short History of Decay is an album that resulted from a chance meeting with Cowboy Junkies guitarist Michael Timmins. Recorded over a five day period with an emphasis on off-the-cuff creativity, the album is a strong statement by an iconoclastic artist, backed by a tight group of excellent musicians.

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This is a sonically adventurous release, frantic and understated at the same time, with cavernous piano, telephone vocals, sudden volleys of fuzzed-out guitar, and the backup vocals of Cait O’Riordan ( the Pogues, Elvis Costello) .

Silver or Lead starts off with a sombre piano, joined by minimal drums and bass. The song walks a tightrope between sombre dirge and a more hopeful sing-along chorus while remaining solidly entrenched in Murry’s trademark melancholy.

Under a Darker Moon is a personal favourite, grinding and sputtering along happily on a solid bed of bone-dry drums and psychotic guitars. Wrong Man reminds me of Nebraskaera Bruce Springsteen and is one of the strongest cuts on the album. Murry’s vocals on this song give me a mental picture of the world’s loneliest monk, preaching to the buzzards and rattlesnakes in the Mohave Desert, right before the fiery ball in the sky claims his sanity.

Another mid-tempo rocker is Defacing Sunday Bulletins, with Murry’s spine-tingling telephone vocals steering the sonic mayhem with steady if slightly trembling, hand. Miss Magdalene is an achingly beautiful acoustic song reminiscent of Leonard Cohen at his most morose.

Originally an Afghan Wigs tune, What Jail is Like is a guitar-driven ballad with sad piano, tribal drums, and some of that good old-fashioned backwards guitar. The lyrics take on extra poignancy in light of Murry’s life story.

A Short History of Decay is a gripping album, sonically adventurous, by an artist who’s paid his dues, came out a stronger man and an iconoclastic artist who made a career out of transforming tragedy and hardship into stark beauty.

review from charlie who will be featuring more on this blog .

Mojave 3 – spoon and rafter 2003

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Mojave 3 is a firm all time favourite here and a little bit of me always hopes that they return with more amazing music . Spoon and Rafter was released on 22 September 2003 in the UK, and a day later in the US. After the break up of Slowdive in 95 Neil Halstead formed the birth of Mojave 3 and released 5 amazing albums

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Skyway Man – Seen Comin’ From A Mighty Eye 2017

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To fully appreciate James Wallace (a.k.a. skyway man ), it helps to understand his background. The auteur is the ultimate Nashville outsider having worked with his hometown Richmond, Virginia’s Spacebomb collective and his own alternative — some might say experimental — folksy naked light band among other under-the-radar projects over the past decade. Along the way he’s picked up some high profile fans in the form of Alabama Shakes’ frontwoman Brittany Howard, but in Nashville he can be seen as a provocateur; a guy unafraid to push boundaries that transform pop into art. He continues that endeavor under his newest alias, Skyway Man.
It’s as good a name as any to lead a collective of nearly 20 musicians who have contributed to……his debut under this moniker. By any measure, Seen Comin’ from a Mighty Eye is an audacious example of what his press release calls “folk futurism.” The song cycle’s concepts are largely too obtuse to easily untangle, but the lyrics are sung in the first person and seem in part to be about living in a dystopian society.

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Wallace’s sweet, boyish voice makes even extended tracks like the wordy, nine-plus minute “Wires (Donny Angel and the Opening Wide)” go down easy, even if inscrutable lyrics such as “And if your sky catches fire ‘cause the tank crushed the car with the family inside/ and you fly from reason like sparks or rocks that you kick down the street with your heels while you’re waiting for the community van that takes you and your bag someplace that you’ve never been before”… phew … are a mouthful to unravel.

Musically, the twisted but melodic tunes encompass a variety of sounds, including but not limited to colorful psychedelic rock, lighter Beatles-styled pop, and a skewed Nilsson/Donovan chamber style that, even with multi-tracked instrumentation, including creative use of horns and string arrangements, stays frothy and generally bubbly. A sunlit prog-folksy instrumental titled “The Dedication of Giant Rock” splits the album in two pieces, giving the listener a break from having to scrutinize the lyrically dense songs.

Those more dedicated to the Wallace cause can spend the necessary effort disentangling the concept, but even for those who take a pass on that task, this is an impressive, bold, and ambitious 53-minute work. Wallace is clearly talented and you can tell he’s referring to himself, and perhaps the creation of this four-sided opus, when he sings “Visions and the sound of my blood/ have been keeping me awake at night.” – American Songwriter

Richmond Fontaine – Thirteen Cities 2016

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The complete Tucson sessions including seven extra tracks.
2007: the snap-pocket shirts, sideburns, literary leanings and pedal steels of alt-country are simply memories from the ’90s. Movement hero and harbinger Jeff Tweedy has led Wilco far from the decade-old roots rock rusticisms of Being There, finding purchase in experimental landscapes dotted with the detritus of modern living. Many have forgotten that Ryan Adams once fronted a marvelous alt-country band called Whiskeytown, as the bedheaded man-child jettisons off into the pop star stratosphere, bouncing from rock to pop to punk to country (again). Not so for Richmond Fontaine, who are led by archetypal old-school-styled alt-country hero Willy Vlautin.

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The intelligent and slightly shaggy Vlautin, who has published a successful novel (and whose voice contains the perfect blend of fragility and gravel for this type of fare), writes smart songs — poetic weepers that ride strains of deep twang and pedal steel and lash sweet pop melodicism to country intonations.

For their seventh album, Thirteen Cities, the Portland, OR band headed into the deserts of Tucson to work for the third time in a row with J.D. Foster, who is known for producing Calexico and Richard Buckner. Calexico pitch in significantly with horns on the euphoric, sprightly pop-country of the opener, “Moving Back Home #2.” Elsewhere, on the busily titled “$87 and a Guilty Conscience That Gets Worse the Longer I Go,” sweet cries of pedal steel trail the mini sketches of Vlautin’s narrator, who witnesses enough suffering and depravity (a near-death boxing match, a tractor-trailer crash, a teenage runaway in a sexual tryst) to spur him into the kind of deeply beautiful and downtrodden existential crisis that was once Tweedy’s stock-in-trade (e.g. “Far, Far Away” from Being There). By the time one gets to “Capsized,” whose down-by-luck narrator drifts, sells his possessions, and estranges himself from all palpable life, you begin to get the sense that the deeper Vlautin plunges his characters into despair, the brighter the twinkle of exultation in his eye. But all would be for naught if he didn’t breathe rare life into these literary tales with melodies that often take breathtaking little turns and swoops.

With Thirteen Cities, Richmond Fontaine employ varnished beauty to exceed the already high-water marks set by 2004’s Post to Wire and 2005’s The Fitzgerald.

Roadkill Ghost Choir – False Youth Etcetera , Vol 1 2017

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Roadkill Ghost Choir are an indie rock band whose music combines the languid but emotionally charged approach of indie rock with a Southern gothic undertow, articulated through the voices of banjo and pedal steel guitar. Roadkill Ghost Choir were formed by lead vocalist and songwriter Andrew Shepard in in DeLand, Florida in 2011; Shepard had been booked to play a solo show at a local club, but soon decided he preferred to have a band for the occasion. Shepard rounded up a backing combo from his friends and siblings: guitarist Stephen Gaza was in a band called Introduction to Sunshine, Andrew’s brothers Zach Shepard (bass) and Maxx Shepard (drums) had worked with the Quiet Men, as did pedal steel and banjo man Kiffy Meyer, and Joe Davoli on keys and trumpet had played in the group Loud Valley. The musicians were pleased with the show and decided to continue working together, and Roadkill Ghost Choir were born. The band earned a reputation in Florida and began touring throughout the South and East Coast, and in 2013, the group released a Kickstarter-funded EP, Quiet Light. The EP received enthusiastic reviews, and as positive word of mouth began to spread, Roadkill Ghost Choir began landing bigger and better bookings, including appearances at the Austin City Limits and Governor’s Ball festivals, and a spot on The Late Show with David Letterman. in 2013, Roadkill Ghost Choir began work on their first full-length album, though not long after the sessions were finished the group was pared down to a quintet by the departure of Joe Davoli. In the summer of 2014, the band released In Tongues and set out for more touring, including appearances at the Bonnaroo and Lollapalooza festivals.

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Hurray For The Riff Raff – The Navigator 2017

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Well the arrival of the new Hurray For The Riff Raff “The Navigator” Four days before the release date has made me a little happy to say the least . This Bronx beauty really knows her shit an avid campaigner for woman’s rights and a avid believer in just do the right fucking thing .

Living In The City track opens up and you just know this is my track for the spring months ahead and possibly right in to the summer its powerful and upbeat with a vibe that will clearly lift you up .  I Am going to declare this a Siding With The Insane Stereo LAW  that each day should start with “Living In The City”

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I have been a huge fan of HFTRR since the self release “It Don’t Mean I Don’t Love You” and i knew from then that this band is going to do well , and everything after that release has always been ,solid and worth every listen .

Woods Album Of The Day

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Woods is a American folk rock band hailing from the mighty Brooklyn they formed  back in 2005 i think , But hey i could be wrong . i first came across this band back in 2014 when they released “with light and with love” that is a stunning album . Jeremy Earl has a voice like no other at the first moment of hearing it, i kind of made me  a little uneasy and thinking that this dude really isn’t at ease . But you end up hooked on his vocals and lyrics . Woods latest release ” City Sun Eater In The River Of Light” that was released in 2016 has been a firm favourite here and time to share with you .

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Cali In A Cup doesn’t appear on this album .