Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Jade Bird: Different Kinds of Light

Hexham, Northumberland phenom Jade Bird has just released her sophomore effort and I am really digging it of late. Different Kinds of Light is a classic jangly guitar pop oriented album rooted in Brit Rock goodness. She is showing some amazing growth as an artist. Check it out!!

Monday, September 20, 2021

The Killers: Pressure Machine (Album of the Week)

Las Vegas's own The Killers have released a very interesting new record that deeply channels their inner Bruce Springsteen. They've taken departures from their signature sound before but this is crazy different yet in a good way. I found myself deeply fascinated by the stories they were telling on every single track. 

Americana, dark version. Wow.

Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Deafheaven: Infinite Granite

The pure pop sounds of Deafheaven have been in constant rotation in my house for the past couple weeks. Their latest record, Infinite Granite, is shoegaze dreamy at its finest. Every track is cloud, blue sky gold. 

Dream pop fans will love this one! 

Monday, September 13, 2021

Villagers: Fever Dreams (Album of the Week)

Dublin's own Villagers are back with a fantastic new record called Fever Dreams. The quiet, introspective style they are known for is present along with some lo-fi vibes which are quite refreshing.

I've always admired how this band uses echo in their songs. It seems a basic sort of effect but the way these guys do it adds in beaucoup nostalgia. 

Saturday, September 11, 2021

Wily Mason: Already Dead

NYC's Wily Mason is back with his fifth long-player and his upbeat pessimism is thanfkully still strong. Already Dead has some great high-energy tempos with themes that are quite dark. Love this combo!

Here is the opening track...

Thursday, September 9, 2021

Billie Eilish: Happier Than Ever

My daughter got me in to Billie Eilish and I'm very grateful she did. The LA native is a genius and her new record, Happier Than Ever, is a stellar sophomore effort. An incredibly wide range of styles are present on this album.

Here is my favorite romantic...

Wednesday, September 8, 2021

Torres: Thirstier

The groovy 60's fuzz pop sound of Torres's latest record (Thirstier) has been a recent obsession of mine. The Orlando, Florida native has been making great music for nearly a decade and her latest is my favorite. Dripping with modern nostalgia!


Monday, September 6, 2021

Jake Bugg: Saturday Night, Sunday Morning (Album of the Week)

The pride of Nottingham is not Robin Hood as many of us yanks might think. It's actually Jake Bugg. He's back with a very upbeat and soulful record called Saturday Night, Sunday Morning. His jangly guitar sound is present, of course, but there's much more to this album than his previous offerings. He's wandered into Miles Kane/Alex Turner territory with this one. Maybe he's always been there...:)

Here is the opening!!

Sunday, September 5, 2021

Bleachers: Take The Sadness Out Of Saturday Night

NYC's Bleachers has a fab new record out that is pure pop sugar. Take The Sadness Out Of Saturday Night is solid from start to finish. It reminds me a lot of an album that MTV would have promoted the crap out of in the early 80's. 

Here is one of my favorite tracks...

Saturday, September 4, 2021

David Crosby Joins Steely Dan

Well, sort of. The last offering from David Crosby, For Free, contains a collaboration with Donald Fagan. The track has a classic Dan theme and style. Back in the early days of Steely Dan, they had multiple vocalists. Maybe Crosby could join for a new round of this? 

Friday, September 3, 2021

Piroshka: Love Drips and Gathers

Super group Piroshka has released their sophomore effort and it's every bit as good as their first record. Love Drips and Gathers is dream pop goodness. I massively heart the places it takes my mind palace. 

Wednesday, September 1, 2021

The Goon Sax: Mirror II

Brisbane's own The Goon Sax third effort, Mirror II, is stellar. I'm in a very dark emo place these days and this record is the perfect soundtrack. A modern-day Joy Divison! 

Monday, August 30, 2021

Yola: Stand For Myself (Album of the Week)

The sweet buttered soul of Yola's third record, Stand For Myself, is my choice for this week's Album of the Week. In many ways, it reminds me of Ray Charles's experiment with country-ish sounds. That must be why iTunes lists it as a country album. 

The album, of course, is much more diverse than that. I hear strands of disco, yacht rock, and even southern rock. Check out the range on these three tracks.

This is a contender for Album of the Year!

Sunday, August 29, 2021

Wavves: Hideaway

San Diego's own Wavves are back with their seventh long-player and it's a breath of fresh air for end of summer listening. Hideaway is an indie-pop gem. I'm so glad there are still groups out there making music like this!

Thursday, August 26, 2021

Jeff Lorber Fusion: Space-Time

Fusion jazz has always been a guilty pleasure of mine. Yes, it sounds like the music you hear when you check your local forecast on The Weather Channel. But it also has a distinctly 80s vibe to it that brings me back to the days of my youth. And it's just chill. 

Jeff Lorber has been fully committed to the genre for six decades. His latest, Space-Time, dished up more of the same wholesome goodness. Here is the title track.

Monday, August 23, 2021

Leon Bridges: Gold-Diggers Sound (Album of the Week)

The incomparable Leon Bridges continues to make truly amazing music. His latest offering, Gold-Diggers Sound, has an 80s vibe to it and that's on top of his magnificent soul sound. The Atlanta superstar delves deeply into romance on this record and it truly warms the heart. 

Here is an example...

Sunday, August 22, 2021

Chet Faker: Hotel Surrender

Melbourne's own Chet Faker is a treasure of the world. His fourth record, Hotel Surrender, dropped last month and it's been in constant rotation at my house. The chill vibe is perfect for those late August blues.

Here is the opening track...

Thursday, August 19, 2021

Inhaler: It Won't Always Be Like This

Dublin's own Inhaler has debuted their first long-player and it is a corker! It Won't Always Be Like This has some strains of that other great band from Dublin while still retaining its own personality, 21st-century version. It brings one's mind to some interesting places. 

Here is one of my favorite tracks...

Tuesday, August 17, 2021

Clairo: Sling

Atlanta's own Clairo sophomore effort, Sling, has been marinating with me for the past few weeks so I thought I would give it a shout out. If there was ever a legit heir to Joni Mitchell, it would be Clairo. In fact, if Joni had started making music a few years ago, she would sound like Clairo. 

Listening to her music is like listening to a wispy dream at the end of a warm, summer day....

Monday, August 16, 2021

Nicole Atkins: Live At The Turf Club (Saturday August 14, 2021)

My first show back after the lockdown was Nicole Atkins last Saturday night at The Turf Club in St. Paul. What an absolute stunner of a show! If you get a chance to catch her as she travels around the country, most definitely see this show.

Atkins does a fantastic job with style range throughout her show. She weaves in her older, Brill building stuff with her new, "AM Radio in 1979" chestnuts from the new record, Italian Ice

Atkins has a quite charming stage presence and engages the audience with various activities like slow dance contests and advice on where to hang out for fun in whatever town she is in. 

"AM Gold" and "Domino" were the two standouts for me from the show. Of course, those are my favorite tracks on the record so that's a bias. But they were both just fantastic to see live. 

The track she really nailed was "Captain." At several points in the song, I admit I welled up from its sheer beauty. It's that fucking good. This song seriously captures all that is the amazing wonder of Nicole Atkins

Please go see her live!!

Son Volt: Electro Melodier (Album Of the Week)

Belleville, Illinois's own Son Volt is back with a fantastic new record called Electro Melodier. There is definitely more rock on this album than alt-country. Perhaps Jay Farrar and the lads want to stretch their legs a bit. Regardless, it's 14 tracks of Son Volt goodness...

Here is one of my favorite tracks...

Thursday, August 12, 2021

Willow: Lately I Feel Everything

Willow Smith is a massive talent from a family of massive talents. That's a lot of pressure but, like her brother, she rises to the occasion and engages in Everest-like conquest. 

I'll admit I'm biased because she's playing my styles of music (alternative, pop-punk, psych-pop). Her latest record, Lately I Feel Everything, is a stunning achievement of diversity regardless of what type of music you like.

Here is the opening track...

Wednesday, August 11, 2021

The Go! Team: Get Up Sequences Part One

If you were a game show host from the 1970s or starting your own variety show around that time, the latest record from Brighton's own The Go! Team would be a perfect soundtrack. Get Up Sequences Part One is filled with upbeat, magnificent crowd-pleasers. 

The first track has me looking for Dean Martin in 1973.

Monday, August 9, 2021

Durand Jones and the Indications: Private Space (Album of the Week)

Soul music is my lifeblood. I listen to it every day and it doesn't matter what era, old or new. 

The recent resurgence of Soul has made me very happy. Leading that charge is Bloomington, Indiana's own Durand Jones And The Indications. Their third long-player, Private Space, is out now and it has every little thing I love about soul music including a most welcome step into the 70's era of this genre.

Here is one of my favorite tracks...

Sunday, August 8, 2021

John Grant: Boy From Michigan

Michigan's own John Grant is back with a "days of yore" stunner of a record called Boy From Michigan. The nostalgia of this record really packs a punch and reminds me of my time growing up across the way in Wisconsin. In terms of musical style, it's very synth heavy but that's just fine because it goes quite well with the theme of the record. 

Here is the title track...

Thursday, August 5, 2021

Bobby Gillespie and Jehnny Beth: Utopian Ashes

It's quite nice to see Primals frontman Bobby Gillespie delving into cinematic music with French artist  Jehnny Beth. Utopian Ashes is a true revelation for 2021 even though it sounds like it came out in the late 60s or early 70s, direct from some smoky Italian cafe. 

Here is the opening track. Put on your sunglasses...

Wednesday, August 4, 2021

Snapped Ankles: Forest Of Your Problems

London's own Snapped Ankles recently released their fourth LP, Forest of Your Problems. It's been marinated with me for over a month and it's now officially at deep soak. I've often wondered what Joy Division would have sounded like if they had been making records today and this is it. An absolute corker of a record.

Here is the opening and title track...

Monday, August 2, 2021

Prince : Welcome 2 America (Album of the Week)

Our favorite son Prince has released a vault record from 2010 called Welcome 2 America. A far superior record to his other release that year (2010), this latest release is eerily prophetic. It describes a world where race relations are at an all-time low, people of color essentially live in poverty, violence and fear and the USA is a really, really dark place.

This is the kind of honesty we need right now. 

Saturday, July 31, 2021

Faye Webster: I Know I'm Funny Haha

Faye Webster has completely blown me away again with another record. I Know I'm Funny Haha is even silkier smooth than her last record. The Atlanta native lets you know just how much heart glow you are in for with the opening track. 

Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Lucy Dacus: Home Video

Richmond Virginia's own Lucy Dacus has released her third record and it's her most diverse yet. Home Video showcases a wide variety of musical styles ranging from acoustic think pieces to indie drone. The range is what impresses me the most. Check out the difference between these two tracks.

A must have, Summer 2021 record. 

Monday, July 26, 2021

Rose City Band: Earth Trip (Album of the Week)

Guitarist Ripley Johnson is quite the musical treasure. Between Wooden Shjips and Moon Duo, one would figure the dude has made his mark on the musical world. But the San Francisco native needed another outfit to get out some mellow, psychedelic vibes about his current home base of Portland. And that's exactly what Rose City Band is all about. 

Earth Trip is a gem from start to finish. I wish it were longer but the eight tracks that are on it are quite amazing. It's a perfect summer record.

Here is one of my favorite tracks, a perfect primer for the feel of the album...

Sunday, July 25, 2021

Hiss Golden Messenger: Quietly Blowing It

Americana Music has seeped into my soul over the last few years. Perhaps it's age or wisdom. Maybe both. But the genre is very connective and I love it. Hiss Golden Messenger is a shining example of why this style and music is a must in any serious collection.  

Their latest record, Quietly Blowing It, is a great primer for those who are beginners to the genre. Dive in, folks! This is a truly great band!!

Thursday, July 22, 2021

Steely Dan: Aja

The first time I heard Steely Dan's Aja I was 10 years old. It spoke to me very deeply not merely about the current state of the world in 1977 but about what my future might look like. It was a universe filled with cool vibes, cocktails, gorgeous women, and somewhat sinister men. All of this is perfectly captured in the third track, "Deacon Blues," the story of a complete loser who thinks he is the bomb. 

I really wanted to be this guy when I was younger. As I aged, I got what Fagan was doing with the lyrics (men's warped perception of reality) and while I didn't want to be him anymore, I did want to just be that vibe that I hoped was the song. "Deacon Blues" is really the heart and soul of the album and it's this track that is its core. 

The tone setter, though, is the opening number, "Black Cow." It warp speed sucks you into a red, velvet lounge with a Felliniesque cast of characters. The level of detail in the lyrics is astoundingly descriptive. You don't imagine you are there. You ARE there. 

Steve Gadd's drum solo on the title track is proof positive that there is a god. "Aja" is a mystical tune that sends you into that universe of cool silk and then becomes iconoclastic with his drumming, a tour de force in every sense of the word.


"Peg" is the big hit, not that Steely Dan needed another one at that point in time. This track is a perfect capsule of AM Gold in the 1970s. It gets overlooked quite a bit because of how much radio time its seen Truly, an amazing piece of music. 

"Home at Last" and "I Got The News" get lost in the shuffle sometimes The former is vintage Dan with its lilt and sway. The latter is the clear OG for Joe Jackson's Night and Day record. The bridge featuring Michael McDonald on b vox struts and moves like a Broadway show. 

"Josie" closes out the record in a hopeful and honest way. I imagine what this character is like and every listen for the last forty-four years has added a new layer to her. I can smell the colors of the five borough neighborhood in which she lives. 

Aja is seven tracks of sheer joy. When my dad was a radio producer in the late 70s, he would let me pretend to be a DJ in one of the practice studios. I would play every track on this record in my imaginary show and as I did, that little wide eyed kid in Kenosha, Wisconsin dreamt of the world of the Big City...

King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard: Butterfly 3000

Melbourne dynamos King Gizzard the Lizard Wizard continue their dragon level output of music with Butterfly 3000. This record sees an expansion of their psychedelic pop explorations into futuristic synth sounds. There are also eastern influences heard throughout the record.

KG has become one of my favorite bands of the last few years. They show no signs of being anything less than awesome. 

Monday, July 19, 2021

Jam & Lewis: Jam & Lewis, Volume One (Album of the Week)

This week's pick for Album of the Week brings with it a profound sense of honor and deep joy. Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis are hometown heroes for me. The Time is the greatest funk band of all time. It's been far too long since this duo released new music and now it's finally here.

80's and 90's R&B with STYLE!!

Volume One has a variety of guest stars and is completely amazing but it's really the last track that has me over the moon. Morris Day sings lead with Jerome Benton acting as his audio valet (as always). The Roots are also featured on this track. 

What Time is it?!??

Sunday, July 18, 2021

The Lounge Society : Silk For the Starving

The West Yorkshire outfit, The Lounge Society, has a massively wonderful debut EP out called Silk For the Starving. It's a pop and dance gift with a dash of basement thrash thrown in for good measure. 

I'll be keeping my eye on this band. They sound like all the other great Brit bands when each first started out. 

Here is the opening track...

Wednesday, July 14, 2021

Kings Of Convenience: Peace or Love

Bergen, Norway's own Kings of Convenience are back with a most wonderful record. Peace or Love has a cafe vibe that is suiting me quite well right now. Chill down, dudes. 

My favorite track is a song that makes me remember what it was like to be in love and not have that feeling returned. 

Monday, July 12, 2021

The Magic Castles: Sun Reign (Album of the Week)

Minneapolis has been home to many great bands over the years. It's also my hometown so groups that come from here are extra special for me. 

The next great band from Minneapolis will be The Magic Castles. I'm a sucker for psychedelic pop but their music goes well beyond that (in a similar way to The Verve). Their latest record is called Sun Reign and it's their best yet. 

Seriously, a stunner...

Friday, July 9, 2021

Mammoth WVH: Mammoth WVH

Wolfgang Van Halen, son of the great guitarist Eddie Van Halen, has released a corker of a record with his new outfit, Mammoth WVH. It makes me so happy that people are still making guitar driven power pop. Fans of 80s hair bands will love this one. 

Seriously, good stuff! 

Wednesday, July 7, 2021

Bill Patten: A Muse In Sunglasses (Original Soundtrack)

Today I'm going to get very local and personal. I recently got back into filmmaking and had my friend Bill Patten compose and perform the soundtrack for the project. The album is available on Bandcamp.

And here is the film. Check it out!

Tuesday, July 6, 2021

James: All The Colours of You

James is an OG Brit Rock band in so many ways. Heck, they were an 80s band! And then they made glorious music in the 90s that stood up with all the greats of the official Brit Rock decade. 

Their 16th Album, All The Colours of You, just dropped and it's fantabulous. I actually chuckled a few times in thinking about how James was Coldplay before there was a Coldplay. 

Here is a live performance of one of my favorite tracks from the record...

Monday, July 5, 2021

Ryan Adams: Big Colors (Album of the Week)

Ryan Adams has released his second of a promised three albums for the calendar year 2021. Big Colors is an excellent continuation of his deep dive into late 70s, early 80s AM gold. I guess this is officially a genre now, right? I think Ryan actually started it with his self-titled 2014 record. 

This record is a lot more upbeat than Wednesdays, his late 2020, early 2021 release. Every track is pure pop heaven. Here is one of my favorites...

Thursday, July 1, 2021

Greentea Peng: Man Made

London's own Greentea Peng has essentially invented a new sound. Psychedelic R&B. My two most favorite genres of music! Her first full length, Man Made, just dropped in early June and it has been in heavy rotation at my house. Her music has taken me on many inner and outer journeys. 

Here is a live version of one of my favorite tracks on the record. 

Wednesday, June 30, 2021

Wolf Alice: Blue Weekend

London's own Wolf Alice is back with quite a dreamy record. Blue Weekend is their third long-player and the band is really coming into its own. The album sends the listener to many unexplored areas of the mind palace. 

Here is my favorite track...

Monday, June 28, 2021

Easy Life: Life's A Beach (Album of the Week)

Proud sons of Leicester Easy Life just dropped their latest hip hop R&B wonder. Life's a Beach is actually their first full-length record after a series of amazing EP's.

It's hard to categorize this group with a genre because there are so many styles present in their music. But that's a good thing, right? Perhaps we should call it "Easy Life" style music...

Friday, June 25, 2021

AFI: Bodies

Ukiah, California's own AFI are back with another delectable grab bag of  80s tinged pop. Bodies is their eleventh studio record. Wow! Has it really been that long?  

Feel nostalgic for current music that sounds forty years old!!

Thursday, June 24, 2021

Japanese Breakfast: Jubilee

I've always been a big fan of coda songs. The big anthem played at the end of the show is always mega. Michelle Zauner's outfit, Japanese Breakfast, closes out their latest record with such a track. "Posing Cars" is sheer anthemic perfection. Indeed, the whole record is lush pop goodness, dreamy and happy in a 1980's kind of way. 

The last track starts off quiet and unassuming and then builds to TITANIA. 

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Biig Piig: The Sky Is Bleeding

London's own Biig Piig has just put out a corker of an EP. The Sky Is Bleeding has a soft indie buzz to it that is most pleasing to the ears. Six tracks of loungey emo-perfect! 

Monday, June 21, 2021

Crowded House: Dreamers Are Waiting (Album of the Week)

The purest of pure pop music fans can rejoice because Crowded House has released a new record. Dreamers Are Waiting is their first studio record since 2010 and the 12 tracks offered are well worth the wait. All the gorgeous harmonies and pop hooks that we've come to expect from the band are present along with some very welcome surprises. 

Neil Finn's sons, Liam and Elroy, really make the band sound stronger and more relevant to the 21st century. Both musicians' talent lifts the band to new highs as they are capable of playing any instrument in a highly skilled fashion. 

Here is the opening track...

And here is my favorite track, a classic Neil introspective think piece! The harmonies completely slay me...

Sunday, June 20, 2021

Jorja Smith: Be Right Back

The cool sounds of Jorja Smith have been hitting me in just the right spot these past few days. This Walsall, West Midlands native has just released Be Right Back, a salve for the soul, R&B variety of course. This is a great record to listen to while cruising around on a hot summer night with the top down!

Here is the opening track...

Friday, June 18, 2021

Gary Numan: Intruder

Most of the world knows Gary Numan from his early New Wave megahit, "Cars." But the dude has been making great music for the last forty years. His latest effort, Intruder, recalls those halcyon days of the 80s (for some reason, always summer soaked for me). It sounds like a soundtrack to a Mad Max film that was never made. 

Here is the opening track...

Wednesday, June 16, 2021

King Daniel: Yellow

King Daniel is one of the brighter stars to emerge from the K Pop Scene in the last couple of years. His latest EP, Yellow, is fantastic and well worth the purchase. "Antidote" is the stand-out track from the release. 

Monday, June 14, 2021

Twenty One Pilots: Scaled and Icy (Album of the Week)

Twenty-One Pilots have happily jumped on the late 70s, early 80s AM Radio musical style bandwagon and I'm so very happy they did. Their signature sound is still present, of course, but just with this added layer. 

The first track sets it all up.

Then we really dive deep into AM Gold.

This is just a record full of classic pop, folks. And it's amazing! 

Sunday, June 13, 2021

Waterparks: Greatest Hits

Houston's own Waterparks has released an album called Greatest Hits. In a very cool twist, this is not a compilation of their first three records. Instead, it's just a great 21st Century pop album that delivers on its title. 

Here is one of the many amazing tracks...

Saturday, June 12, 2021

Billie Marten: Flora and Fauna

Ripon's own Billie Marten has just released her third record and it shows some real growth for the artist. Wispy pop numbers combined with 90's drone make Flora and Fauna a great choice for summer listening. 

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

Gruff Rhys: Seeking New Gods

Bethesda, Wales' own Gruff Rhys with his seventh long-player and he continues to amaze me. I've been a fan of this artist since his Super Furry Animals days and his latest, Seeking New Gods, is yet another example of his dragon-level awesomeness. 

Here is an example of what to expect...

So so good! 

Monday, June 7, 2021

Matt Berry: The Blue Elephant (Album of the Week), Summer Sun (Song of the Summer 2021)

Bromham, Bedfordshire's own Matt Berry has just released what may very well be the Album of the Year. The Blue Elephant is certainly the Album of the Summer with its sun-soaked melodies and mind-expanding sonic waves of warmth. 

Every 60s band you have ever loved is heard on this fabulous record. Here is the official Song of the Summer for 2021.

Here is a track that sounds like it's from a lost Doors record.

Folks, it doesn't get much better than this! 

Saturday, June 5, 2021

Czarface & Mf Doom: Super What?

7L & Esoteric and Wu-Tang Clan member Inspectah Deck are back with another supergroup offering under their moniker Czarface & Mf Doom. Super What? is chock full o' great 90s hip hop vibes guaranteed to soothe the soul. 

Check it out!

Wednesday, June 2, 2021

Amy Wadge: Artist Spotlight

Today I'd like to shine a bright light on Backwell's own Amy Wadge. Mostly known for her songwriting credits, Wadge has her own solo artistry for which she should be very proud. Her music for the massive hit BBC series, Keeping Faith, is a crucial element to the intricate storytelling of the show. 

Here is my favorite track from the music she did for the program. 

Monday, May 31, 2021

The Chills: Scatterbrain (Album of the Week)

New Zealand's own The Chills have just released their ninth long-player so now their musical output officially spans five decades. Scatterbrain is a complete delight from start to finish with its jangly guitars tinged with psych-pop. Seriously, folks, this record is a stunner! 

Here is my favorite track...

Sunday, May 30, 2021

St. Vincent: Daddy's Home

The pride of Dallas, Texas, St. Vincent, is back with her seventh long-player. Daddy's Home, in addition to being a fabulous title, is her best work yet. All her usual pop tropes are present along with the most welcome addition of sultry soul numbers. 

Here is a taste...

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

Paul McCartney: McCartney III Imagined

When I heard that Macca's latest effort was going to be "re-imagined," I admit to being skeptical. I liked McCartney III just the way it was. But McCartney III: Imagined expands its awesomeness in ways I didn't imagine. A wide range of collaborators (Beck, St. Vincent, Phoebe Bridgers, Anderson .Paak just to name a few) engage the Cinemascope on the music and truly make it an aural delight.


Monday, May 24, 2021

Paul Weller: Fat Pop (Volume 1) (Album of the Week)

The Modfather is back with yet another extraordinary set of music. Fat Pop (Volume 1) continues to illustrate the Weller is feverishly exploring new horizons and discovering innovative ways to express himself. 

It's pretty much impossible for me to put into words how amazing this artist has been in my life. He's second only to John Lennon in my view. His body of work now spans six decades and every single bit of it is amazing and perpetually relevant. 

Here is the title track...

Sunday, May 23, 2021

Alife Templeman: Forever Isn't Long Enough

Carlton, Bedfordshire should be proud of their son Alfie Templeman. He's barely 18 and the dude is wielding the history of pop music like a hammer. His latest effort, Forever Isn't Long Enough, sounds like AM radio in the 70s and 80s. So so good...

Here is the title track...

Saturday, May 22, 2021

Manchester Orchestra: The Million Masks of God

Atlanta's own Manchester Orchestra is back with their sixth long-player called The Million Masks of God. Cinematic and breathtaking, this record honestly reaches new highs for the band. I listened to it recently on a long hike up here in the North Woods and it was the perfect soundtrack for the sights I was taking in. 

Thursday, May 20, 2021

Teenage Fanclub: Endless Arcade

Eleven albums by Bellshill Scotland's favorite sons Teenage Fanclub doesn't seem like enough given the high quality of their output. Endless Arcade ranks right up there with Bandwagonesque and Grand Prix in terms of dragon level of awesomeness. It's 12 bangers from start to finish.

Here is the title track...

Monday, May 17, 2021

The Coral: Coral Island (Album of the Week)

Merseyside has gifted a secret treasure to the world and they are called The Coral. I say "secret" because not many folks in the US know about them which is sadly tragic. They are a remarkable band that has been making amazing music for two decades. 

Their latest effort, Coral Island, adds to their zeitgeist of stunning achievements. It tells a magical story of a magical place with magical people who do magical things. Or is it just an ordinary place with lovers, friends, amusement, and the realities of life? Yet another treasure from this incredibly gifted band. 

Here is one of my favorite tracks. 

Sunday, May 16, 2021

Field Music: Flat White Moon

The latest from Sunderland lads Field Music was my "zone out and look at the Iowa countryside" soundtrack on a recent drive back from picking up my son from college. Their late Pepper era psych combined with synth intrigue drives Flat White Moon to dizzying new heights for the band. 

Check it out! 

Saturday, May 15, 2021

London Grammar: Californian Soil

Nottingham's own London Grammar just dropped Californian Soil, their third long-player, and it's a corker.  I needed to be blissfully swept away by some indie-pop goodness and this did the trick!

Monday, May 10, 2021

Brockhampton: Roadrunner: New Light, New Machine (Album of the Week)

The pride of San Marcos, Texas, Brockhampton, is back with a completely amazing record called Roadrunner: New Light, New Machine. Honestly, picking an album of the week from this outfit seemed nearly impossible back when I first started this blog. But good music is good music. This record is a start to finish, put it on, and fly away type of experience.

Here is a taste...

Sunday, May 9, 2021

Dinosaur Jr.: Sweep It Into Space

Amherst, Massachusetts' own Dinosaur Jr. is back with Sweep It Into Space, their first record in five years. It's great to see these guys still kicking around after all these years and playing their own special version of grunge. 

Here is one of my favorite tracks from the new record...

Monday, May 3, 2021

Greta Van Fleet: The Battle At Garden's Gate (Album of the Week)

Proud sons of Michigan, Greta Van Fleet, are back with more tasty 70s/80s retro rock and what could easily be a soundtrack to a film that has yet to be made. The Battle At Garden's Gate is indeed a triumph of awesomeness guaranteed to make anyone of any age airband their asses off.

Here is the opening track...

Sunday, May 2, 2021

Flyte: This Is Really Going To Hurt

London's own Flyte have just release their sophomore effort and it's fab. This Is Really Going To Hurt is actually quite painless and completely wonderful. Easy, acoustic grooves to sooth the soul in an Esher Demos sort of way. 

Saturday, May 1, 2021

The Snuts: W.L.

West Lothian, Scotland's sons The Snuts have dropped their first long-player and I am marveling at its mellowish Brit rocks strands of goodness. W.L. is a mighty fine debut. It's refreshing to hear young artists with such introspection and amazing melodies. 

Monday, April 26, 2021

Cheap Trick: In Another World (Album of the Week)

Rockford, Illinois's own Cheap Trick are back with a record guaranteed to fling you to the 1970s and fill you with nostalgia. In Another World had me grinning from ear to ear on the first listen with each successive play resulting in an out and out love for the album. It's so nice that people are still making music like this.

Here is the opening track.

Sunday, April 25, 2021

Pixey: Free To Live In Colour

Liverpool's own Pixey must think it's the year 1965. Her music sounds like it could have easily come out that year. The Yardbirds? The Stones? Brill Building chique? All present on her fantastic EP, Free To Live in Colour. 

Here is the opening track...

Saturday, April 24, 2021

Glasvegas: Godspeed

Glasgow's own Glasvegas are back with their own unique form of Brit Rock (a heavy dash of under the boardwalk lover's angst crooning). Godspeed is a fine record that even has 80's synth-pop influences. I feel like it's going to be a good summer listen, maybe during a walk around the lake!

Monday, April 19, 2021

Daniel Lanois: Heavy Sun (Album of the Week)

The musical world is a much better place with Daniel Lanois in it. He is well known for his producer work but I've always been more partial to his own music. His first album, Acadie, is easily in the Top 500 albums of all time. 

His latest offering is Heavy Sun which features a wide variety of musical styles, collaborators, and explorations. Here is one of my favorite tracks.

Sunday, April 18, 2021

Tune-Yards: Sketchy

The glory and power that is Tune-Yards are back with a new record. Sketchy. has all the requisite avant-garde tracks as well as some quite interesting pop tracks. I've always enjoyed this group's ability to fiercely explore new horizons. 

Saturday, April 17, 2021

Major Murphy: Access

Straight-up rock fans will rejoice at the latest offering from Bloomington, Indiana's Major Murphy. There are elements of dream pop and 90's indie present but mostly it just kicks ass. I'm looking forward to watching this band blossom and write their fire in the sky. 

Monday, April 12, 2021

The Fratellis: Half Drunk Under A Full Moon (Album of the Week)

If Glasgow's Fratellis went back in time to 1959 and found an "Enchantment Under The Sea" dance to play, it would sound like their latest album, Half Drunk Under A Full Moon. The lads have showcased this sound a few times on their previous album with a track here or there but this is an album made entirely of a sound over a half century old. 

It is marvelous...

Sunday, April 11, 2021

Skegss: Rehearsal

I've always loved garage bands. So loud. That's why Byron Bay, New South Wales natives Skegss have been in heavy rotation at my house these last few weeks. Their sophomore effort is called Rehearsal and it sounds nothing like one. 

Here is one of my favorite tracks.

Saturday, April 10, 2021

Ben Howard: Collections From The Whiteout

Bantham, Devon native Ben Howard is back with yet another treasure of an album. Collections From The Whiteout is his fourth record and continues his explorations of the small but amazing stories of the tucked-away places of the world. He also engages in some fairly serious introspection. 

Here is one of my favorite tracks...

Monday, April 5, 2021

Lana Del Rey: Chemtrails Over The Country Club (Album of the Week)

Lana Del Rey continues to dazzle the world with her brilliance. The NYC native's latest offering, Chemtrails Over The Country Club, is a journey into a David Lynch-like world of warped nostalgia and Americana. Each track peels back a layer of heartache. 

She's a genius, folks! 

Friday, April 2, 2021

Genesis Owusu: Smiling With No Teeth

Canberra, Australia's own Genesis Owusu has dropped his first full length and it is a giant breath of fresh air. Smiling With No Teeth is bloody mags with its driving beats, marvelous stories, and penetrating lyrics. It's just so cool I can hardly stand it!

Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Lake Street Dive: Obviously

The soft soul of the '80s and '90s seems relegated to a deeply buried Satellite radio station or, worse, the piped-in music in a department store or elevator. I'm sure most people think the style of music that is so eloquently showcased in the theme song from the 80's TV show Moonlighting by Al Jarreau is dated and should be pronounced dead. 

But I don't. I love it. It gives me that nostalgia that I crave every day. 

That's why I'm happy to see Boston's Lake Street Dive carrying their torch of this genre and doing it with aplomb. Their latest offering is Obviously and it's old school perfect!

Monday, March 29, 2021

Kings of Leon: When You See Yourself (Album of the Week)

Kings of Leon are back with another fantastic record. When You See Yourself is bright, upbeat, and darn near perfect for the start of spring. I continue to be impressed by the growth of this Nashville outfit with their soul-carving tracks of power and wonder. 

Saturday, March 27, 2021

Sg Lewis: Times

Reading's own Sg Lewis has a vibe that I am really digging right now. His debut album, Times, just dropped and I find myself yearning for the days of late-night dancing in the main room at First Avenue. It's a tight, yet ultra exploratory nine-song set that gets those hips revolving! 

Wednesday, March 24, 2021

The Cloud Nothings: The Shadow I Remember

Cleveland's own The Cloud Nothings are back with another fine installment of indie, post 90's grungey fuzz-pop. The Shadow I Remember is their ninth effort and showcases the band's spectrum quite well. Several of the tracks stray into early 'Mats territory which I find quite pleasing being a Minneapolis dude. 

Monday, March 22, 2021

King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard: L.W. (Album of the Week)

King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard have been busy reptiles of late. This Melbourne outfit has released 4 albums in the last two years alone. Their latest is called L.W. and it's more of the same fun and innovative energy that this band brings to the musical world. 

Here is the opening track...

Sunday, March 21, 2021

Rob Zombie: The Lunar Injection Kool-Aid Eclipse Conspiracy

Shock rock, metal maniac Rob Zombie is back with The Lunar Injection Kool-Aid Eclipse Conspiracy and, man oh man, is it a corker! It's been five years since we have seen any new material from this intense MF and I don't think I could have waited any longer.

Thursday, March 18, 2021

Neil Young and Crazy Horse: Way Down In The Rust Bucket

Neil Young has been consistent in his seven decades of musical output. He releases 1-2 records a year. Some may be new material. Others may be from the vaults. Either way, for Young fans like me, it's mags.

His latest release takes us back to those halcyon days of 1990, a sadly overlooked era for Neil and his outfit, Crazy Horse. Way Down In The Rust Bucket is a nice collection of new and old tunes that brings with it very inspired performances.

Here is a taste...

Monday, March 15, 2021

Maximo Park: Nature Always Wins (Album of the Week)

Newcastle upon Tyne's own Maximo Park are back with their seventh full-length record. Nature Always Wins is quite wonderful on several levels, the chief one of which is its sheer pop power. The hooks are ready-made for stadium anthems. But it's also introspective and sullen in an optimistic way. 

And that's just how I heart my Brit Rock. 

Friday, March 12, 2021

Chung Ha: Querencia

Folks, I have to admit it. I dig K Pop now. It's energetic and fun. Look no further than Chung Ha if you want to dip your toes in the water of this genre. Her debut album, Querencia, just dropped and it's filled with banging tunes to pump your first to and dance.

Monday, March 8, 2021

The Pretty Reckless: Death By Rock and Roll (Album of the Week)

NYC's The Pretty Reckless have just put out an absolute killer of a record. Death By Rock and Roll is a total stunner, loaded with banging anthems and power ballads. 

Here is the opening track. Wow! 

Saturday, March 6, 2021

Aaron Lee Tasjan: Tasjan! Tasjan! Tasjan!

Aaron Lee Tasjan has returned with another chapter in indie folk grit. Tasjan! Tasjan! Tasjan! (his tenth record) sees this amazing artist delving into psych-pop pools of wonder. 

Quite dreamy...

Monday, March 1, 2021

Django Django: Glowing In The Dark (Album of the Week)

London's own Django Django are back with their fourth full length called Glowing In The Dark. This is easily their best piece of work since they started over a decade ago. 

There are so many layers to it that I don't even know where to start other than the simple fact that the album is clearly one of the most inventive works I've heard in the last few years. 

Here is one of my favorite tracks...

Sunday, February 28, 2021

The Notwist: Vertigo Days

Weilheim in Oberbayern's own The Notwist are quite an interesting and long lived outfit. They somehow manage to combine folk, Krautrock, and indie bliss into one giant gift to the world. Vertigo Days is their latest and it is wonderful. 

Thursday, February 25, 2021

Hayley Williams: Flowers For Vases/Descansos

What a beautiful kiss Hayley Williams has bestowed (yet again) on the world with her latest offering, Flowers For Vases/Descansos. The first track sets the tone magnificently and, from there, it's an amazing journey filled with wonder.

Monday, February 22, 2021

The Moons: Pocket Melodies (Album of the Week)

Northhampton's own The Moons are back after a long hiatus with their fourth long-player called Pocket Melodies. The album title is truly indicative of its sound. Simple, fun, catchy pop tracks rooted in decades of music history. 

This is truly Brit Rock at its finest and it's great to see the lads back in fine form on this one. 

Sunday, February 21, 2021

Foo Fighters: Medicine at Midnight

Slinky would not be a word that I would associate with the band Foo Fighters. But that's just what their latest record is and I love it! Medicine at Midnight finds Dave Grohl and Co. blazing new trails of sonic love. Some parts are quite funky and others are classic Foo Fighters. 

"Shame Shame" is my Track of the Week this week. Play it loud!!

Saturday, February 20, 2021

Arlo Parks: Collapsed In Sunbeams

A stunning debut record for London's own Arlo Parks. Collapse Into Sunbeams has been a giant breath of warm air that has been much needed in these frigid north woods. The music reminds me a lot of summers and the lyrics are steeped in social commentary that strikes quite deeply in hearts and souls.

This is a must-have record for 2021.

Monday, February 15, 2021

Baio: Dead Hand Control (Album of the Week)

Baio, bass player extraordinaire of Vampire Weekend), has a fantastic new record out called Dead Hand Control. The album brings me back to an 80's Mpls sound and it's just the sort of indie grist I need right now. 

Here is the title track.

Sunday, February 14, 2021

Lucero: When You Found Me

Memphis's own Lucero is back with a fantastic record called When You Found Me. They are billed as a country-rock band but they sure remind me an awful lot of the great power pop, guitar-driven bands of the '70s and '80s. 

Feeling a whole lot of nostalgia with this band! 

Monday, February 8, 2021

Midnight Sister: Painting The Roses (Album of the Week)

LA's own Midnight Sister has a new record out called Painting The Roses. Their chill vibe hit me at the right moment and now the album has taken complete hold over me. A great piece of music to close your eyes and just drift off in your mind palace...

Saturday, February 6, 2021

Steven Wilson: The Future Bites

For well over 20 years, I've been a fan of Steven Wilson and Porcupine Tree. I've even had the pleasure of seeing them live way back in 2005. Wilson continues to put out amazing music. His latest effort, The Future Bites, is a fine example of what he always does: define the times. 

For example, this track....

A stunning and beautiful indictment of our times. 

Monday, February 1, 2021

Rhye: Home (Album of the Week)

Toronto's own Rhye is back with another gem of a record. Home continues his foray into slinky new R&B horizons. Obviously, this latest record is romantic but the overarching vibe is about all the areas of the heart and soul that experience love. 

Monday, January 25, 2021

The Weeknd: After Hours (Album of the Week)

I feel as though I didn't pay enough attention to Toronto's own The Weeknd when he released After Hours last March. As a child of the '80s, the synth-pop hooks on this record are plentiful and run deep. And the dude is playing the Super Bowl this year so he deserves some props! 

This song makes me feel nostalgic for a time nearly 40 years before its release! 

Monday, January 18, 2021

Ryan Adams: Wednesdays (Album Of The Week)

Ryan Adams is back after a two year hiatus with Wednesdays. It's the first of three promised records in 2021 and Adams is kicking things off on a sad but lovely note. Much of the record reminds me of Love is Hell which I consider the third best album of all time (more on that at some point in the future). It's haunting, stark, gentle and yet somehow hopeful.

Adams is the greatest living American musician. No one even comes close to his depth and range. His songwriting skills are so incredible that it's hard for me to get my head around how fucking good he is. 

Monday, January 11, 2021

Taylor Swift: Evermore (Album of the Week)

Taylor Swift snuck out an album at the end of last year that's just fucking amazing. Channeling her inner Ryan Adams, Swift digs deep into her bag of emo for Evermore. This record is a stunning achievement and is easily my favorite of her entire catalog. 

It's pretty much got everything, folks. Check it out!

Saturday, January 9, 2021

Dire Straits: Making Movies

I've been playing the third offering from London's own Dire Straits quite a bit lately. Seven tracks of sheer musical beauty. Their first two albums were stellar, don't get me wrong, but Making Movies showed an outfit ready to go beyond the stars. 

This video played a lot on MTV. I loved it every time I saw it. 

Sunday, January 3, 2021

Album of the Week: McCartney III by Paul McCartney

Macca was doing quarantine long before pandemics. His first solo album (McCartney) was recorded in seclusion at his Scottish farm and saw him playing and performing all instruments and vocals. Flash forward to McCartney II in 1980 which saw the same formula used albeit with a more techno sound than the first offering.

Now we have McCartney III, recorded this year during the quarantine. That amazing feeling of the other two records is present on this album along with some new sounds and horizons. 

I love the down-home feel!