Music

Rooster Roundabout: This week’s music highlights

Jesse Schulz

Trappin’ some mice

I've truly been living under a rock, foraging for scraps left by unsuspecting homosapiens that have stepped nonchalantly over my grabby fingers. Truly. Because I didn't know that Modest Mouse (one of my favorite bands) released their latest record (Strangers to Ourselves) this past week. Their first album in eight years, and I had no idea. Let's disregard my severe lyrical crush on Isaac Brock for a second, but shoot me now. Not really. The band recently made an appearance on “Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon” to perform their latest single “Lampshades on Fire.” Watch that below, while I kick myself in the corner.

Something’s Cooke-ing

An unusual music biopic is on its way, and who is it about, you might ask. Sam Cooke himself. The incomparable soul singer is getting the biographical film treatment, but it's not going to be your average “life on the big screen” endeavor. Instead, the film's producers are going to make the flick about the circumstances surrounding Cooke's murder in 1964 and say that it'll be “like a murder investigation.” No definitive plans on when that'll come out, but the project has been approved by Cooke's family, so that's one point on their side. Head to Consequence of Sound to read more 'bout it.

A fightin’ generation-al

If I'm being perfectly honest, the only thing I've ever found interesting about Generationals was their track “When They Fight, They Fight.” Other than that, nothing else they did ever really caught my attention. But like most obsessions, there's usually an immediate context that lends itself to why we latch on to such things. That track reminds me of driving through Texas, windows down, cigarette in hand, hair blowing in the wind. It's magical. Anyhoo, the duo has come out with a new video for their track “Charlemagne,” from their latest record Alix, which is out and about now. Seeing as how I'm biased, I'll refrain from talking about the track, other than to say it's meh. There, that's it. No more. Have a looksie at the video below.

Generationals - “Charlemagne”

Ameriie is back ...

'Member Ameriie? Well, the only thing that I remember from her was the track “1 Thing,” which also made an appearance on Sofia Coppola's Somewhere. It was a nice little jammy jam. But then Ameriie was suddenly nowhere to be found … until now. The R&B singer has once again teamed up with Rich Harrison (who produced the aforementioned radio hit) for another tune, titled “Out Loud.” Not sure if this comes off an upcoming release or not, but either way, it's good to see this girl back in the game. Have a listen to the ditty below.

It’s the blues, man.

Fans of the Blues Brothers ... or John Belushi ... or Dan Aykroyd can now rejoice because Aykroyd, along with Judith Belushi Pisano (Belushi's widow), has launched Blues Brothers Records as an offshoot of Blue Note Records. The label will aim to sign up-and-coming blues musicians as well as veterans in the game. According to Billboard, Aykroyd said, “I always want to find the next Gary Clark Jr.” Here's hoping. Read more about the record label and what Aykroyd and Blues Brothers manager Eric Gardner had to say about it here.

A Thermal remembrance

Did you know that bandmembers Hutch Harris and Kathy Foster (of The Thermals) once had a project titled Hutch and Kathy? I didn't. They released one album, and they're planning on releasing it on vinyl for the upcoming Record Store Day (April 18). The album will feature some bonus tracks (otherwise, what's the point, right?), and to add to that, they'll also be going on tour. Sadly, they won't be making a stop in the Duke City or anywhere near it. But what can ya do? Head to Pitchfork to read more about that, and just for fun, have a listen to one of my favorite Thermals tracks (“Back to the Sea”) below. Cheers!

The Thermals - “Back to the Sea”

The systems of sound

I'm sure a lot of folks were disappointed when LCD Soundsystem decided to call it quits. I can't count myself in that group because I'd only begun to pay attention to them when James Murphy announced that he'd be moving on to other ventures. Among said ventures, Murphy provided the musical score for Noah Baumbach's latest film While We're Young, and he's shared one of his original compositions (“We Used To Dance”) for the masses. The film hits theaters on March 27, and the soundtrack is available for purchase on March 24, which is literally around the corner. Have a listen to the song over at Consequence of Sound.

Jay Z and the JW

Two years after Jay Z's Magna Carta Holy Grail came out, it makes sense the rapper would want to release his album on vinyl. So who else would he tap to handle the distribution and whatnot? Jack White himself. Yes, Jack White's Third Man Records is going to release the 7” vinyl series that'll comprise Jay Z's much-lauded opus. It'll feature eight 7” records in a clothbound binder with scratchoff pages that have lyrics and photos. Pitchfork notes that it'll be limited to 1,000 copies, so you better preorder that sucka! That hits the open market on March 20 (today), so get it! And just for fun, watch Jay Z’s “Picasso Baby” performance art film below.

Jay Z - “Picasso Baby: A Performance Art Film”

A rushing wave and a fearful cloud

I don't know much about Wavves, other than having seen them play a show at Sunshine Theater about a year and a half ago. The show was a tad underwhelming, but that could have something to do with the gaggle of screaming teens that were in front of me. Those rambunctious young'uns. Now Wavves is collaborating with Cloud Nothings to release an album together, titled No Life for Me. So far, there's no release date or tracklist, so you'll have to check the bloggity-blogs for more info on that. Don't worry; I'm sure it'll still happen.

Juliette Lewis and giraffes

Like a lot of people, I was a little skeptical about Juliette and The Licks (fronted by noted actress Juliette Lewis), but that quickly changed after purchasing their record Four on the Floor. Granted, it was their last record, and they seized making music after, but I always held out some semblance of hope that they'd come back with something. Well, my prayers have sort of been answered. Now Lewis is going to front Giraffe Tongue Orchestra, a metal band featuring members of Mastodon, Dillinger Escape Plan, Dethklok and The Mars Volta. According to the AV Club, their first album will be released later this year. But keep an eye out for more details as said year unfolds. And just for fun, have a listen to Juliette and the Licks’ “Hot Kiss” below.

Juliette and the Licks - “Hot Kiss”