Rooster Roundabout: This week’s music highlights
I'm sure a lot of people were sad after LCD Soundsystem decided to call it quits, especially after releasing the stellar This Is Happening in 2010. But all good things … Anyways, front man James Murphy recently told Rolling Stone that he's working on the live album for their final show at Madison Square Garden (the subject of the rock doc Shut Up and Play the Hits). You can read more of interview here.
Spotify wins out again (as if taking over the world's streaming sinuses weren't enough). Led Zeppelin's entire catalogue will now be available for free listening on the service. So if you're one of those who's too lazy to get out to a record store (or even purchase the physical albums online), then your wish has come true. So head over to your Spotify page, and climb that “stairway to heaven.”
Don't you love it when innovative and interesting musicians become such restless artists that they keep releasing innovative and interesting music over and over? Well, this is from judging one song. But St. Vincent, aka Annie Clark, has announced a self-titled album that's set to hit music markets on Feb. 25. Clark has made the track “Birth in Reverse” available online. You can hear that below.
Don't you just love love songs? No? What's wrong with you? Having already spilled my guts by ruminating over the “myth of the love song,” I've just come to accept that it's a notion that never dies. Maybe that's why artists like Beck, Fiona Apple, Blake Mills, Jim James and more have taken to covering famous love songs for the Sweetheart 2014 compilation. You can hear Jim James' cover of Bob Marley's “Turn Your Lights Down Low” below, and head over to Pitchfork to get a full tracklist.
I feel as if Black Lips are one of those bands that you can only really appreciate if you were into them from the beginning. Granted, I've only heard their album Good Bad Not Evil (which was a good album), but after seeing them live at Emo's in Austin, Texas, the underwhelming concert wasn't enough to make me a faithful listener. Oh well … now the band has announced a new record (Underneath the Rainbow), and it was partially produced by the overrated Black Keys' drummer Patrick Carney. Let's just say I probably won't get to this one.
The bossy lady herself, Kelis, has announced that she's coming out with a new album. The album, supposedly titled Food, is being produced by Dave Sitek (of TV on the Radio) and is slated to come out on April 28. Kelis' last album took listeners on a techno-club journey, whereas her previous efforts had a more pop-friendly rap/R&B vibe to them, so who knows what this new record holds? Either way, I'm intrigued.
Mark March 25 on your calendars. It will be a golden day indeed. Because that's the day that a “lost” Johnny Cash album (titled Out Among the Stars) is scheduled to be released. According to Pitchfork, the album was recorded in 1981, and John Carter Cash (Cash's son, duh) took the helm in restoring the recordings, which contain duets with June Carter Cash and Waylon Jennings. This is good news, folks. Good news.
Movie soundtracks: Those fuckers can be a hefty bore or a good time … depending on how you look at it. David O. Russell's new film American Hustle is getting the soundtrack treatment that will be available in stores on Dec. 24. But the reason this soundtrack is extra special is because it has a new track by Jeff Lynne … yes, the front man, songwriter, composer, singer, the list goes on and on, of E.L.O. The track is titled “Stream of Stars,” and you can give it a listen below.
Wow … I must have been half-asleep if I didn't even know The Sounds had released a new album (titled Weekend) in October. Oops. But now they've premiered a video for their track “Hurt the Ones I Love.” This is my first introduction to their newer stuff, which seems to follow more closely to their work on Crossing the Rubicon. But I've always been more partial to the dance-pop-punk craze that dominated Living in America. You can view their new video below.
I could get better with rap. OK, I need to get better with rap. While my musical palate is rudimentary at best when it comes to rap and hip-hop, I always appreciate a good beat, some slick rhymes and good production. And that's what's happening on Busta Rhymes & Q-Tip's track, “Butch & Sundance,” off their mixtape The Abstract & The Dragon, which became available this week for streaming and downloading. You can hear the track below.
7 Days of Funk (composed of Snoopzilla and Dam-Funk) have unleashed the video to their first single “Faden Away.” We shared the track a couple weeks ago, but now this old-school throwback visual should further cement it into your subconscious. Cause why not?
After releasing The Big Dream earlier this year, David Lynch has decided to release a 12” LP for a song titled “Bad the John Boy.” According to the avant-director and sometimes musician, the track was recorded during the Big Dream sessions but was never intended for the album. Looks like Lynch had other plans. The single hits stores and online markets on Nov. 12.
The Killers have always been hit-or-miss with me. Sam's Town had some great tracks, but I pretty much boycotted everything they've done after that album. Now the band is coming out with a compilation of their hits (titled Direct Hits). The release will also have two new songs, one of which is “Just Another Girl,” which recently became available online. You can hear that below.
Girl power! Apparently, due to complaints of a lack of women at music festivals, HARD Events co-founder Gary Richards has decided to curate an all-female electronic music festival for 2014. It may not be as big as Coachella or Austin City Limits, but given time, this could be a huge and extraordinary thing. So keep an eye out for that in the new year.
Am I the only one that ever wondered what happened to Busta Rhymes. It's not like he withered into the wasteland of one-hit wanderers, but more that he hasn't had a hit in some time, or at least one that I can name off the top of my head. But now Busta has released a new track from his forthcoming album (E.L.E. 2), and I think I smell a hit. The track, “Thank You,” also features Q-Tip.
The entire world was saddened by the death of Lou Reed. And fans were somewhat a little territorial or at least flabbergasted at the fact that his album sales and digital downloads sky-rocketed. It's not really a surprise when you think about it. But now, Laurie Anderson, Reed's widow, has shared a touching and heartfelt goodbye to Reed, which you can read at Rolling Stone. You can also read Patti Smith's elegiac remembrance of a generation's most prized poet in the New Yorker.
Ty Segall's album Sleeper, which was released earlier this year, had more of a folk bent rather than the garage antics that had permeated his earlier releases (and probably his future releases). But that didn't stop music critics from fawning over his slight change of sound. Now Segall has shared a video for album track “The Man Man,” which you can see below.
Granted I like older punk music (no name-dropping here), but Black Flag was one of those bands that just swooped by me. It wasn't an intentional detour away from their particular sound, but more like I just fell asleep when their set came on. But now the band has released its first album (with original member Greg Ginn) in 28 years, titled What The..., and it's streaming online for those who are too excited to get in the car and go buy it.
Again, you gotta love NPR's “First Listen” for the albums they choose to give advanced listens to. Now they've shared the soundtrack to the Coen brothers’ upcoming flick Inside Llewin Davis. You can head to their website to hear the soundtrack, which features Justin Timberlake, Carey Mulligan, Marcus Mumford, Oscar Isaac and more. Or grab a physical copy on Nov. 11. Or you can get it now on vinyl for a mere $5.98.