New Releases — April 2, 2021

CDs + Vinyl:

Cha Wa – My People CD/LP (Single Lock)
The future of New Orleans music is Cha Wa, a Mardi Gras Indian funk band that takes the music of the streets into the 21st century [A limited-edition ‘Mardi Gras splatter’ color vinyl pressing is also available.]

Floating Points, Pharoah Sanders & The London Symphony Orchestra – Promises CD/LP (Luaka Bop)
British musician/producer Floating Points (aka Sam Shepherd), legendary jazz saxophonist Pharoah Sanders and the London Symphony Orchestra join supreme forces for Promises, an album of nine movements for the ears, heart and soul. The first album Sanders has recorded in over a decade, the simply stunning 46-minute collection floats and melts and is as beautiful as it is mesmerizing.

Flock Of Dimes – Head Of Roses CD (Sub Pop)
On her second full-length record, Head Of Roses, Jenn Wasner follows a winding thread of intuition into the unknown and into healing, led by gut feelings and the near-spiritual experience of visceral songwriting. The result is a combination of Wasner’s ability to embrace new levels of vulnerability, honesty and openness, with the self-assuredness that comes with a decade-plus career as a songwriter, producer, multi-instrumentalist and prolific collaborator.

The Fratellis – Half Drunk Under A Full Moon CD/LP (Cooking Vinyl)
“If you thought you knew The Fratellis, think again. Half Drunk Under A Full Moon, the Glasgow band’s sixth album, is a kaleidoscopic delight full of surprises, from its flamboyant title track and lush songs steeped in brass and strings to twists on the stomping sing-alongs with which the trio first found fame.” – OriginalRock.net

Allen Ginsberg – At Reed College: The First Recorded Reading Of Howl & Other Poems CD/LP (Omnivore)
Allen Ginsberg’s first public reading of his epic poem Howl took place in October of 1955 at the famous Six Gallery in San Francisco. In attendance that night were Gary Snyder, Philip Whalen, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Philip Lamantia, Michael McClure, Kenneth Rexroth, Jack Kerouac and Neal Cassady. It was long thought that the first recorded reading of Howl was the March 1956 reading in Berkeley, California; however, prior to that evening, Ginsberg travelled to Reed College in Portland, Oregon, with Gary Snyder for a series of readings. Snyder and Ginsberg read at Reed on the nights of February 13 and 14, 1956. The Valentine Day’s performance was recorded and then forgotten about until John Suiter, researching Snyder at Reed’s Hauser Memorial Library, found it in a box in 2007. Having gotten the material required for his research, Suiter returned the tape to the box in the library and there it remained for another decade plus and is finally released: the first known recording of Ginsberg’s classic poem.

Hey, King! – Hey, King! CD/LP+MP3 (ANTI-)
Songwriter, vocalist, and multi-instrumentalist Natalie London and her partner, vocalist and percussionist Taylor Plecity, approach music with a childlike curiosity and adventurous spirit – fitting for a band whose name comes from a Where The Wild Things Are line. The duo’s self-titled debut album as Hey, King! was produced by 4x Grammy winner Ben Harper.

Elizabeth King – Living In The Last Days CD/LP (Bible & Tire Recording Co.)
Memphis soul gospel queen Elizabeth King recorded her first single in 1970, and if all had gone as planned, she would have made her first album a few years later. Instead, it took another half century, but Living In The Last Days captures King at the height of her powers, with the intervening decades only serving to stoke the flames of one of the most memorable voices in modern gospel music.

Mythic Sunship – Wildfire CD/LP (Tee Pee)
With their new album Wildfire, renowned Copenhagen-quintet Mythic Sunship begins a new chapter of the free-form rock journey that has seen them put out a critically acclaimed album annually for the last five years and made them one of Europe’s most interesting new psychedelic bands. Wildfire is a set of raw, kinetic outbursts that take the listener from the groovy fuzz rock and cosmic jams that the band is known and loved for into new territories of crunched melodies, uncanny harmonies, turbulent rhythms and even more ecstatic walls of guitar insanity.

Shakey Graves – Roll The Bones X 2xCD/2xLP (Dualtone Music Group)
In honor of the tenth anniversary of Roll The Bones, Shakey Graves presents Roll The Bones X. This reissue includes the original album paired with 15 Odds + Ends, a full second disc of never before heard songs, demos, and deep cuts. Shakey Graves brainchild Rose-Garcia released Roll The Bones on Bandcamp in 2011 without any promotion and little to no information about Shakey Graves. That year, Bandcamp made it a featured album for a month and from there it has stayed among the website’s top selling records. [A limited-edition gold and black color vinyl pressing is also available.]

Sturgill Simpson – Cuttin’ Grass Vol. 2: The Cowboy Arms Sessions CD/LP (High Top Mountain)
Sturgill Simpson returns with the next installment of his bluegrass series, Cuttin’ Grass Vol. 2: The Cowboy Arms Sessions. The genre-defying singer/songwriter reconvened an A-Team of acoustic players (now dubbed “The Hillbilly Avengers”) for another round of reinterpretations of his catalogue, this time largely focusing on 2016’s A Sailor’s Guide To Earth, which won the Grammy for Country Album of the Year and was nominated for Album of the Year. This volume also includes “Jesus Boogie”, originally performed by Simpson’s first band, Sunday Valley, and two previously unreleased songs, “Tennessee” and “Hobo Cartoon”, the latter of which was co-written with the incomparable Merle Haggard – who once said that Simpson was “about the only thing I’ve heard that was worth listening to in a long time.” [A limited indie store exclusive blue vinyl pressing is also available.]

Godspeed You! Black Emperor – G_d’s Pee AT STATE’S END! LP+10” (Constellation)
The inimitable GYBE returns with another soundtrack for our times. As the heretical anarcho-punk spirit of the title implies, Godspeed harnesses some particularly raw power, spittle and grit across two riveting 20-minute side-length trajectories of noise-drenched widescreen post-rock: inexorable chug blossoms into blown-out twang, as some of the band’s most soaring, searing melodies ricochet and converge amidst violin and bassline counterpoint.

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