Hundreds of albums released every week and hardly anything worth listening to. If you're not part of a peer group that endorses, usually fairly reflexively, specific albums and songs based on marketing cues then you probably have a hard time sorting the wheat from the chaff when presented with huge assortments of unfamiliar music. Luckily I'm here to help with a quick rundown of interesting new releases each week or so available from the Rhapsody music service.
(Why Rhapsody? - well, I'm a subscriber and they offer easy to use lists of new releases and just added albums. I also subscribe to Yahoo's music service but finding new releases there is far less intuitive. iTunes has a terrific list of new releases but doesn't offer subscription streaming.)
Select New releases:
Modest Mouse: We Were dead Before the Ship Even Sank - The Mouse could be this centuries REM but thankfully they've decided not to cash on on the Kidz Bop friendly Float On and return with a typically idiosyncratic offering. New Mousekateer Johnny Marr adds yet another layer to the already inventive MM sound - his mark is instantly felt on tracks like Dashboard (which could be an Electronic cover). First rate stuff...
Panda Bear: Person Pitch - So this is what happened to that Jesus and Mary Chain Beach Boys Tribute Album. They needn't have bothered.
LCD Soundsystem: Sound of Silver - Dancey Punky Dancey Punky Dancey Dancey Punky Dance. Meh...
Floyd Thursby - Never heard of Thursby before but this 5 track offering of sparsely produced folky singer/songwriter styled tracks impresses from the first listen.
Kate Mann : Devil's Rope - Effective mildly countrified New Folk offering. Check out standout tracks Cowboys are my Weakness, Fall Or Fly and Polly's Song.
Darryl Read: Bleeding Paradise - Beat is Dead. Long Live Beat. Ray Manzerek joins in on this collection of post-modern Beat poetry. I'm not a huge fan of this stuff but Read and Manzerek do a good job of elevating what usually ends up as cringe worthy suburban coffee house poetry slam dreck.
Byron Nemeth: The Force Within - Capable hard rock guitar instros. The lead track name checks Joe Satriani which gives you a pretty good idea of the direction things take.
Dan Beahm and the Invisible Three: Amplifier - Well crafted acoustic set. Check out Stupid Girl and Seperate But Equal.
Goodbye Elliott: Running to California - Well crafted album of slightly artsy modern power pop. Check out Ticket to Love, Running to California, Kamikaze Love Machine.
Jinx Jones: Rumble & Twang: Rockabilly goodness.
Buva: All That Humming - One of my favorite new releases this week - tasteful and melodic singer/songwriter fare.
Andrew Norsworthy: Horizon City - This one almost missed he cut but luckily I left it streaming while doing some other stuff and it really grew on me. Somewhat rootsy folk rock. Good stuff.
Doug Adamz: Guitar Solos: This collection of songs for solo guitar is already in Sunday morning heavy rotation around here. Gorgeous stuff.
John Legend: Once Again - You already know this really good right?
Ricky Skaggs and Bruce Hornsby - Fine Bluegrass offering from a pair of wily veterans.
Joss Stone: Introducing Joss Stone - For every killer track like Girl They Won't Believe It or Tell Me 'bout It there's a slab of generic dance pop or weak pseudo soul that totally waste Stone's obvious talents.Still a worthwhile release...
Ted Leo & The Pharmacists: Living with the Living - More PoMoPunkyFun with Ted Leo. Elvis Costello/Jam/JJackson fans should Go for it...
Chantal Kreviazuk: Ghost Stories - Hey, I liked Lilith Fare and this is a pretty good album of angsty girl pop.
Low: Drums and Guns - Low are the rare band as good as they are cool and while this may not end up being my favorite release it's definatly worth more than a casual listen.
A Toys Orchestra : Technicolor Dreams - Decent Indie reminiscent of Modest Mouse, Of Montreal and others. Worth a listen...
Jethro Tull: Aqualung - Tull are likely the least appreciated 70's rock behemoth. Despite massive sales and a huge following of devoted fans they still seem like underdogs. This deluxed-up edition of the classic Aqualung album outshines pretty much every else released so far this year. Listen without prejudice and discover an exceptionally weel played, well written and well produced example of classic rock. The classic rock label may be cliche by now but there is a timelessness and quality to this stuff that nothing released these days can match.
Jethro Tull: The Best Acoustic - For fans of Tull's softer side this collection brings together the best of the band's folkier moments.
Graham Coxon: Love Travels at Illegal Speeds -Terrific mod influenced album from Blur guitarist Coxon.
Andre Previn/ David Fink - We Got it Good and That Ain't Bad - Sweet and tasty Elligton songbook. Niiice...
Mac Davis: Best of - Cheese? Perhaps but perfectly aged...
Dexter Gordon:Clubhouse - '67 vintage Dex remastered.
The Joe Meek E.P. Collection - Features crucial cuts from The Tornadoes, John Leyton and more.A New World indeed...
For 80's completists - The Danse Society: Looking Through
What you really should be listening to...
Fretwork: William Lawes Consort Music - Rockin' the six string viol old world style
Tonu Kaljuste: Arvo Part Choral Works - So good they invented a time machine to send it back to us from the futire (Rhapsody release date 31 Aug 2029