New Release Round-Up 02-07-20
Green Day - Father Of All - Warner Bros
Five-time Grammy Award-winning Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees Green Day unleash their thirteenth studio album, Father Of All... on Reprise / Warner Records. Formed in 1986 in Berkeley, CA, Green Day is one of the world’s best-selling bands of all time, with more than 70 million records sold worldwide and 10 billion cumulative audio/visual streams. Their 1994 breakout album Dookie, which sold over 10 million and achieved diamond status, is widely credited with popularizing and reviving mainstream interest in punk rock, catapulting a career-long run of #1 hit singles. Entertainment Weekly calls Green Day, “The most influential band of their generation,” while Rolling Stone attests, “Green Day have inspired more young bands to start than any act this side of KISS, and that doesn't seem to be changing.” In 2004, Green Day released the rock opera American Idiot which captured the nation’s attention, selling more than 7 million copies in the U.S. alone and taking home the coveted Grammy Award for Rock Album of the Year. Mojo declared “It's exhilarating stuff, the kind of record that sets new parameters as to what is possible from a punk rock'n'roll band in the 21st century.” In 2010, a stage adaptation of American Idiot debuted on Broadway to critical and commercial acclaim.
Nada Surf - Never Not Together - Barsuk
With their ninth album, Nada Surf: Matthew Caws, Daniel Lorca, Ira Elliot, and Louie Lino continue pursuing their humanistic vision of the world through hooky, catchy rock songs with sharply drawn, yet tenderly felt lyrics. Never Not Together, is a compact, yet wide-ranging collection of songs that revel in the quartet's ability to evoke and reflect grand and intricately wrought emotions, whether through sweeping guitar solos or hushed-whisper vocals. Never Not Together was recorded at the Coach House Studio in Wales' Rockfield Studios, where artists like Echo & the Bunnymen, the Flamin' Groovies, and Dumptruck recorded albums. "I've been seeing the name on albums for so long," says Caws. "It's a working farm, and the founder/owner, Kingsley Ward, would come in and tell us stories when he wasn't farming. I'd walk into town every morning and listen to the sheep talking as I walked by them. "That openness to listening to their fans, to each other, to the world has helped inform Nada Surf's legacy as down-to-earth rock stars musicians who can command festival stages around the world while connecting to audience members on a personal level, conscious of the shared humanity every step of the way.
Oh Wonder - No One Else Can Wear Your Crown - Republic
Oh Wonder are one of the UK's best-kept secrets. What started with the relatively modest ambition of uploading one track per month on Soundcloud quickly transformed into two albums and two tours, more than 1.2 million global adjusted album sales and this hotly anticipated third album 'No One Else Can Wear Your Crown'. First single 'Hallelujah' is a statement of intent and marks the start of the band's next chapter, no longer DIY pop-stars-in-hiding.
La Roux - Supervision - Supercolour Records
Grammy-winning and BRIT and Mercury-Prize-nominated artist La Roux returns with her first new material in five years - 'Supervision' out this week on her own label Supercolour Records. From cover to contents, this is unequivocally the album Elly Jackson always wanted to make - a claim that with some artists might ring alarm bells, but in this instance simply means that ‘Supervision’ sounds precisely, unmistakably, gloriously like La Roux. La Roux shot to worldwide fame with her debut self-titled album in 2009 selling over 6 million singles worldwide and - in addition to collaborations with the likes of Skream, Kanye West, and Major Lazer – helped reshape pop as we now know it. Elly’s second album, 'Trouble In Paradise', was a critically-adored reinvention, topping the Dance/Electronic charts in the US and landing La Roux her second top 10 album in the UK.
The Homesick - The Big Exercise - Sub Pop
The Big Exercise, the second album by Dutch band The Homesick, and their first for Sub Pop, finds the group keenly second-guessing their core chemistry as a live unit, imbuing their angular post-punk workouts with baroque elements such as piano, acoustic guitar, percussion, and even clarinet. “It’s the opposite of trying to translate recorded music to the stage,” guitarist Elias Elgersma comments. “We were already playing these songs live for quite some time, so for this album, we wanted to unlock the potential of these songs further in the studio.” Opening track “What’s In Store” was in part inspired by bassist Jaap Van der Velde’s unprompted deep dive into the world of national anthems, making his own attempt to conjure a similarly timeless melody. The song seamlessly bleeds into the chivalrous prance of “Children’s Day” and the fragmented “Pawing,” righteously encouraging Erik Woudwijk’s nimble, cerebral drumming to become the band’s driving force. The headstrong wanderlust of The Big Exercise is fitting, given The Homesick’s exodus as a small-town Dutch band ready to trot the world. Contrary to the quest for belonging, roots, and provenance found on their debut album, Youth Hunt, the band’s creative trajectory is now dictated by a sense of otherness and imagination. The sharp contrasts are ever-present; the music’s new sonorous depth is underpinned by wry meditations on family ties, alternate realities, and commonplace encounters. As the band’s chief lyricists, Elgersma and Van der Velde deliberately keep each other in the dark, allowing the syntax of words and music to entangle in surprising – sometimes delightfully absurd – ways. “I Celebrate My Fantasy,” for example, summons a mirage of creeping pianos, sylvan clarinet flourishes and cartoonish sprawls with mock-paranoia, as Elgersma documents a macabre vision he had during a mild case of sleep paralysis. True to the band’s method of holding the more mundane, fleeting moments under a magnifying glass, closing track “Male Bonding” pulls a wide range of movements out of the top hat: the album’s rare heavy burst is promptly mediated by almost medieval-sounding prog rock-flirtations. The Homesick have made a record impregnated with impressions that still fit neatly under the pop umbrella. The album title’s nod to Scott Walker - “the big exercise” is a phrase pulled from a passage in Walker’s biography, Deep Shade of Blue - isn’t an aberration either: straddling pop sonority and the cacophonous fringes is something well worth aspiring.
Stone Temple Pilots - Perdida - Rhino
Perdida is a Deeply Personal Album that Weaves Introspective Lyrics and Unexpected Instruments Together Across 10 Songs for an Emotional and Musical Journey.
Beach Bunny - Honeymoon - Mom & Pop
Honeymoon is the excellent debut album from Beach Bunny, the four-piece band out of Chicago. Recorded at the iconic Chicago studio Electrical Audio with producer Joe Reinhart (Hop Along, Algernon Caldwaller), the nine songs on the LP burst with energy that capture their vital and life-affirming live shows. Songs like the swooning and anthemic singles 'Dream Boy' and 'Ms. California' encapsulate the highs and lows the exiting the honeymoon stage of a relationship. The long-awaited debut LP 'Honeymoon' from Beach Bunny follows their breakout hit on Tik-Tok, 'Prom Queen' (65 million global streams, 518K+ TikTok videos). Honeymoon will be released on February 14th, 2020 following a major market tour with festival plays.
The Ballroom Thieves - Unlovely - Nettwerk Records
Americana-leaning indie folk band The Ballroom Thieves take on topics as heavy as politics and as joyful as lifelong companionship on their latest studio album Unlovely.
For more information on these and other releases out this week, check out our New Releases charts by week section.