Best New Releases – Fleet Foxes, Beastie Boys, Vandervelde, Les Blanks, Jason Forrest, Dave Depper, Freelance Whales
The long-awaited Fleet Foxes‘ follow-up LP to their widely acclaimed 2008 self-titled debut officially drops today, although there have been plenty of leaks of the album online over the past month or so. Either way, Helplessness Blues, is one of May’s most anticipated releases. It will be interesting in the coming weeks to see what the consensus is among critics, bloggers and fans.
* Thanks to DailyBeatz for “The Plains/Bitter Dancer”
It seemed like a lot of critics, even some bloggers, pretty much wrote off Beastie Boys some years ago. But the die-hard fans didn’t, they just learned how to eventually embrace, and celebrate, a band that was maturing and changing. They’re definitely not the break-through white boy rappers now they once were, but it’s fair to say, at least from our perspective, that their long anticipated new album, Hot Sauce Committee, Part 2, is a welcomed treat.
While it is still too early to know how we feel about the album overall (need more spins because there’s so much happening), there are definitely a good number of stand-out tracks that we liked right away – the most impressive among them being “Make Some Noise,” the album’s opening track, which would have likely been a hit record for the band some 20 to 25 years ago. The only criticism is that we think the cowbell, especially towards the end, is out of place. “Make Some Noise” was first released as a special limited edition 7-inch vinyl last month on Record Store Day. You can stream Hot Sauce II now via Spinner, for at least a few more days, or click on the album title below to buy it now.
*Track via Antiquiet.com
The track that is perhaps more likely to be a hit nowadays is the reggae dub groove, “Don’t Play No Game That I Can’t Win,” featuring Santigold; as MixtapeMaestro.net put it, the song boasts “…an enslaving light island-ska gallop, some mighty fine Santigold B-girl toasts, and the Boys offering their old-school-laced wordplay wizardry usual under a muffled gauze. ” Although there are varying opinions, Hot Sauce Committee, Part 2, is probably the Beastie Boys best album since 1998’s Hello Nasty.
We are also really digging the new double single from David Vandervelde, an artist that we’ve definitely heard of before, and recall making a mental note to add him to the eventually-to-listen-to list, which if you’re a real music fanatic is a perpetually growing list. (See end of this post for more on the dilemma of a music fanatic.) Therefore, these two new songs, one brand new this week, and the second from his 2008 LP, Waiting For Sunrise. On the Secretly Canadian website, and the new album cover, it looks like he’s dropping his first name from his official artist name to instead go by Vandervelde.
This first week of May (that has come so fast) also brings us new releases from Architecture in Helsinki, Les Blanks, Det Vackra Livet, Dave Depper, The Jolly Boys, Dead Rider, and artist Jason Forrest who’s magnificent instrumental track, “Raunchy,” has a trademark 1960’s surf rock feel to it, a track that could be cool on the soundtrack of Pulp Fiction 2 (which is unlikely to be made at this point).
“Straw Man” – Les Blanks from In Country
The Franz Ferdinand Covers EP officially dropped this week, featuring some amazing covers from Stephin Merrit (Magnetic Fields), LCD Soundsystem, Peaches and the track, “Live Alone,” featuring FF with Blondie’s Debbie Harry. You can get the EP on vinyl via Amazon.
Freelance Whales Release New EP for Japanese Disaster Relief Initiative
Freelance Whales recently reached out to Sweet Relief Musicians Fund to offer support in their ongoing fundraising campaign for the Japan Disaster Relief initiative. Their collaborative efforts resulted in a new Freelance Whales’ Benefit For Japan EP. 100% of the funds raised from the EP will be donated to the Japan Society Earthquake Relief Fund. The Benefit For Japan EP will be available for purchase starting Tuesday May 3rd, on the official Freelance Whales’ website.
Listen to Ra Ra Riot‘s remix of Freelance Whales’ single, “Hannah.”
Benefit for Japan EP Tracklisting
“Hannah” – (Peter Wade of MNDR Remix)
“Hannah” – (Ra Ra Riot Remix)
Killer Whales – (Darby Cicci of the Antlers Remix)
“Generator^First Floor” – (Aislyn Remix)
“Hannah” – (Lightwaves Remix)
“Ghosting” (Daytrotter session)
“Location” (Daytrotter session)
“Broken Horse” (Daytrotter session)
100% of the net proceeds go to Japan aid through Sweet Relief
Sounds Under Radio Continue to Roll; Release New LP
Sounds Under Radio, we think, could turn out to be a Band to Watch in 2011; they sure have a sound that reaches out to the masses, and we wouldn’t be surprised if you start to hear much more about them in the months to follow. Recently, Entertainment Weekly declared: “I don’t know who these Sounds Under Radio folk are trying to fool, but that is a big-time rock ‘n’ roll band masquerading as some unsigned indie-emo whatsits.” Since 2007, the band’s music has been featured in film and TV, including Spider Man 3, The Wolfman, and CW’s The Vampire Diaries.
While the band’s style is definitely not indie rock, but more alternative/emo rock, we still think they’re worth mentioning in this week’s Best New Releases based on the few songs we’ve heard from their new album, Where My Communist Heart Meets My Capitalist Mind.
A tribute album was released with cover songs of the Sex Pistols, The Damned and The Clash from bands that most people haven’t heard of. The album’s lead single is nothing special, but we’re including it anyways.
“Melody Lee” (The Damned) – Leatherface from No Future: A Tribute To The Sex Pistols, the Clash, the Damned
The Dilemma of a Music Fanatic
(continued from top of post)
At some point you get to a place where you wish you could just clone yourself three times, and then maybe, maybe, you’d be able to keep up with all the terrific music coming out all of the time – and that’s just speaking to the music that is basically “known.” But then there are always the albums and bands that you’ve never heard of before that end up – through one means or another – on your list because you heard a song or two. It’s the opposite of a drug addict who’s always running out of dope. The music addict has more “dope” than he or she can ever consume. Geez, hope that didn’t sound too cheesy. (It did? Well, please accept our apology).
And also unlike the dope head, we love music because we love to share it with people. That’s why our posts are usually long and loaded with music, and then there are all the songs we hear that we only post to Twitter and Facebook in order to get them out faster. So, we hope to keep in order to share it with othersand now are imprinted in memory as “newmust have more. music; we come across the “unknown” great music all the time and do our level best to get it out somehow – via a post, one of our mega MP3 playlist mixes, Twitter or Facebook, for as many people to hear as possible.
And then of course if you add in all the music you love from your music collection dating back years, maybe particular bands or albums that you haven’t heard in ages, it’s overwhelming. But there’s just something special and refreshing about hearing good new music from bands and artists you’ve never heard of before.
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