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Details  :   Uncut Magazine: Best 75 Albums of 2018   Playlist     Reviews: 

double_negative Album: 1 of 75
Artist:  Low
Title:  Double Negative
Released:  2018-09-13
Tracks:  11
Duration:  48:55
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Lyrics Musicbrainz
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1   Quorum  (03:42)
2   Dancing and Blood  (06:22)
3   Fly  (05:48)
4   Tempest  (04:48)
5   Always Up  (05:28)
6   Always Trying to Work It Out  (03:55)
7   The Son, the Sun  (03:30)
8   Dancing and Fire  (04:17)
9   Poor Sucker  (03:35)
10  Rome (Always in the Dark)  (03:32)
11  Disarray  (03:52)
Double Negative : Allmusic album Review : On their 2015 album Ones and Sixes, Low worked with producer BJ Burton, who helped the slowcore icons create an album that balanced the warmth of their harmonies against the cool, polished surfaces of electronic sound that dominated the arrangements. If the pairing didnt always seem a comfortable fit, that hasnt stopped Low from returning to the studio with Burton and making an album that dives further into an electronic netherworld than Ones and Sixes ever suggested. Released in 2018, Double Negative often processes Mimi Parker and Alan Sparhawks vocals to the point where they function more as instruments than as carriers of language or human emotions (though Parkers organic instrument does get a showcase on "Fly" and "Always Up"), and their surroundings are usually layers of sculpted noise that sound utterly alien, as if this were some sort of aural exercise in dystopian science fiction. From the first moments of "Quorum," which suggests a hellish soundscape trapped in a locked vinyl groove, to the final abrasive pulse of "Disarray," this music confronts the listener on a level Low have never attempted before. Then again, as a work reflecting a world in chaos and a time when the line between truth and lies has been blurred into insignificance, Double Negative is in many respects a worthy reflection of its era, the sound of humanity struggling to be heard in the midst of punishing discord and alien static. Double Negative is a much more challenging listen than Ones and Sixes, but what makes it difficult also gives it a greater sense of purpose than the previous album. However, one failing that works against these songs is that the vocals are frequently Auto-Tuned and digitally fractured to the point that theyre genuinely unintelligible (especially Sparhawks), and while the sound of this album communicates powerfully in itself, the finer points of what Low are trying to say in these songs is sometimes lost. Despite this, Double Negative is a brave and thoughtful collection of songs that lets Lows beating heart scream for its life against a world without compassion, and if it isnt much fun, in 2018 its truly necessary.
hope_downs Album: 2 of 75
Artist:  Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever
Title:  Hope Downs
Released:  2018-06-15
Tracks:  10
Duration:  35:25
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   An Air Conditioned Man  (04:52)
2   Talking Straight  (03:44)
3   Mainland  (04:14)
4   Time in Common  (02:05)
5   Sisters Jeans  (03:16)
6   Bellarine  (02:55)
7   Cappuccino City  (02:54)
8   Exclusive Grave  (03:47)
9   How Long?  (03:07)
10  The Hammer  (04:30)
Hope Downs : Allmusic album Review : Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fevers first two EPs introduced a band that knew a thing or two about making jangle pop. With one foot in the six-string chime of the 80s and another planted firmly in the here and now, the Australian quintet crafted plangent songs built around half-sung melodies, spiraling lines, and tempos that had a low-key drive to them. It was a little rough around the edges, a little unfocused at times, but on its debut album from 2018, Hope Downs, the band has tightened things up in just the right ways and come up with something magical. The guys in the band headed off to a remote area of Australia, bunkered down with producer Liam Judson, and refined their sound until it shone like a gem. More than before, the guitars have a spiky bite, the vocals come through clearly, the rhythm section has some kick, and every song feels like a hit. The first three songs, "An Air Conditioned Man," "Talking Straight," and "Mainland," are breathtaking guitar pop, built on the DNA of the Feelies, the Go-Betweens, and R.E.M. but given new life by the emotion the three songwriters and vocalists (Fran Keaney, Tom Russo, and Joe White) pour into the words and singing. Not to mention the thrilling interplay of their guitars; none of them are virtuosic, but the parts they play fit together as seamlessly as Lego pieces. The vocals also fit together nicely, sounding just different enough that each song has its own flavor and similar enough that their harmonies blend in a very warm and satisfying way. After the trio of genius pop songs knock the breath out of the listener, the rest of the record just keeps punching. Slashing rockers ("Time in Common"), lilting songs that exude nostalgic melancholy ("Sisters Jeans") and sweetness ("Cappuccino City"), and very Robert Forster-sounding pop ("The Hammer") combine to create the kind of album that any jangle pop band of the 80s would have traded their Rickenbackers for. Who knows what they would have traded to get a song as hooky and immediate as "Bellarine" or as effortlessly heartbreaking as "How Long?" Certainly few, if any, bands of the era made an album as consistently great as Hope Downs. Not many in Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fevers era have, either. Its a small-scale triumph of hooks and guitars from a band whose members have figured it all out and delivered a debut album that comes as close to perfect as any guitar pop album can.
freedoms_goblin Album: 3 of 75
Artist:  Ty Segall
Title:  Freedom’s Goblin
Released:  2018-01-26
Tracks:  19
Duration:  1:14:57
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   Fanny Dog  (03:39)
2   Rain  (04:05)
3   Every 1’s a Winner  (04:18)
4   Despoiler of Cadaver  (03:52)
5   When Mommy Kills You  (02:47)
6   My Lady’s on Fire  (03:52)
7   Alta  (04:07)
8   Meaning  (03:06)
9   Cry Cry Cry  (03:12)
10  Shoot You Up  (03:20)
11  You Say All the Nice Things  (04:22)
12  The Last Waltz  (02:24)
13  She  (06:22)
14  Prison  (01:06)
15  Talkin 3  (02:02)
16  The Main Pretender  (02:59)
17  I’m Free  (02:42)
18  5 ft. Tall  (04:33)
19  And, Goodnight  (12:02)
Freedom’s Goblin : Allmusic album Review : Anyone who has tracked Ty Segalls creative evolution since he launched his solo career in 2008 has probably noticed that new elements regularly float into his eclectic musical worldview, but very little ever entirely goes away. His canvas has gotten broader and his color palette has expanded at each turn, and 2018s Freedoms Goblin finds him putting practically all of it to work. Freedoms Goblin is a sprawling and ambitious album, packing 19 songs into 75 minutes, and while its sheer size is impressive, what really sets it apart is the wealth of ideas springing forward in every track, as well as the strength of the execution. The noisy attack of Segalls guitar is still at the center of this music, as always, but theres a great deal else going on. Ben Boyes keyboards are bigger in the mix than before, bassist Mikal Cronin and drummer Charles Moothart are still the smartest and strongest rhythm section Segalls had to date, and the use of horns on several tracks gives these songs a big, bold feel. Emmett Kelly returns as a superb foil for Segalls exploratory guitar solos (there are a few jam-nific guitar duels that would bring a smile to plenty of classic rock fans), and the band is on fire from beginning to end; the homespun sloppiness of some of Segalls early efforts has given way to a focus thats tight without strangling the performances. (The crisp, clear recording by Steve Albini gives the performances a welcome assist.) The bold strut of the opening "Fanny Dog" connects like top-shelf garage punk played by the Mad Dogs & Englishmen band, the taut and buzzy cover of Hot Chocolates 1978 disco smash "Every 1s a Winner" shows Segall and his band can cut the funk in their own way, "My Ladys on Fire" adds a dash of Laurel Canyon mellow vibes to the mix, "Talkin 3" suggests Segall and his crew have been listening to old James Chance records, "Meaning" charges out of the gate like a ramped-up version of vintage Black Sabbath, and the closing number, "And, Goodbye," sounds like the best Neil Young extended jam since "Dont Spook the Horse." Much of the time, Freedoms Goblin plays like Ty Segalls version of the history of rock & roll as seen from his perspective, and its as idiosyncratic and exciting as you would expect. Its also some of the very best music Segall has given us to date, essential for fans and strongly recommended to curious newcomers.
and_nothing_hurt Album: 4 of 75
Artist:  Spiritualized
Title:  And Nothing Hurt
Released:  2018-09-07
Tracks:  9
Duration:  48:10
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   A Perfect Miracle  (04:46)
2   I’m Your Man  (04:28)
3   Here It Comes (The Road) Let’s Go  (04:41)
4   Let’s Dance  (05:11)
5   On the Sunshine  (05:00)
6   Damaged  (04:57)
7   The Morning After  (07:42)
8   The Prize  (05:24)
9   Sail On Through  (05:58)
theres_a_riot_going_on Album: 5 of 75
Artist:  Yo La Tengo
Title:  There’s a Riot Going On
Released:  2018-03-16
Tracks:  15
Duration:  1:03:31
Info:  Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   You Are Here  (05:43)
2   Shades of Blue  (02:51)
3   She May, She Might  (05:22)
4   For You Too  (04:13)
5   Ashes  (03:32)
6   Polynesia #1  (02:25)
7   Dream Dream Away  (05:49)
8   Shortwave  (05:44)
9   Above the Sound  (05:41)
10  Let’s Do It Wrong  (03:33)
11  What Chance Have I Got  (03:05)
12  Esportes Casual  (01:25)
13  Forever  (04:19)
14  Out of the Pool  (02:46)
15  Here You Are  (06:55)
dirty_computer Album: 6 of 75
Artist:  Janelle Monáe
Title:  Dirty Computer
Released:  2018-04-27
Tracks:  14
Duration:  48:43
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Lyrics Lyrics2 Review Musicbrainz
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1   Dirty Computer  (02:00)
2   Crazy, Classic, Life  (04:47)
3   Take a Byte  (04:07)
4   Jane’s Dream  (00:19)
5   Screwed  (05:02)
6   Django Jane  (03:11)
7   Pynk  (04:00)
8   Make Me Feel  (03:14)
9   I Got the Juice  (03:46)
10  I Like That  (03:20)
11  Don’t Judge Me  (06:00)
12  Stevie’s Dream  (00:47)
13  So Afraid  (04:04)
14  Americans  (04:06)
Dirty Computer : Allmusic album Review : "Yoga" was an ostensibly minor part of the Janelle Monáe discography by the arrival of Dirty Computer. Three years old and outshined by another Wondaland release, Jidennas "Classic Man," it nevertheless became Monáes first single to hit the Billboard Hot 100. That Monáe hadnt previously hit the chart as a headliner was further evidence of a flawed industry, given that she and primary collaborators Nate Wonder and Chuck Lightning had been making songs with pop appeal for nearly a decade. "Yoga" did show that Monáe was more open to messing with contemporary trends. Moreover, the songs humanized, sexually uninhibited, and anti-authoritarian qualities -- she was earthbound, celebrating her body, asserting "You cannot police me" -- also indicated the course she has taken with her third album. Oddly enough, "Make Me Feel," the one Dirty Computer track on which Monáe employs a wholly pop songwriting team including Julia Michaels, Justin Tranter, and Mattman & Robin, is the funkiest and friskiest number here, clearly influenced by the late (and uncredited) Prince. Monáe and her trusty Wondaland partners, the albums dominant creative force, colorfully twist and flip new wave-leaning pop with booming bass drums and rattling percussion. They transmit powerful and defiant jubilance in response to "wack ass fuckboys everywhere (from the traphouse to the White House) who make the lives of little brown girls so damn hard," among dozens of other inspirations Monáe acknowledges in the essential liner notes. Almost every track is densely packed with quotables delivered in approaches that shift from easygoing elegance to hard-fought, triumphant conviction. The latter approach yields the albums apex, "Django Jane," in which Monáe raps throughout with inhuman precision, threatening a pussy riot, declaring "We aint hidden no more," and uplifting the "highly melanated" while dropping some of the sets few sci-fi allusions, "Made a fandroid outta yo girlfriend" among them. Not to be lost in all the power moves are indirect and direct references to a romantic relationship -- another form of dissent -- referenced and explored throughout, from the glowing "Crazy, Classic, Life" through the fiery "So Afraid," the only moment of emotional fragility. While this is easily the most loaded Monáe album in terms of guests, with Brian Wilson, Stevie Wonder, and Grimes among the contributors, theres no doubt that its a Wondaland product. It demonstrates that artful resistance and pop music are not mutually exclusive.
babelsberg Album: 7 of 75
Artist:  Gruff Rhys
Title:  Babelsberg
Released:  2018-06-08
Tracks:  10
Duration:  40:56
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Frontier Man  (03:34)
2   The Club  (04:03)
3   Oh Dear!  (03:16)
4   Limited Edition Heart  (03:38)
5   Take That Call  (03:42)
6   Drones in the City  (03:49)
7   Negative Vibes  (05:15)
8   Same Old Song  (04:09)
9   Architecture of Amnesia  (04:41)
10  Selfies in the Sunset  (04:49)
3_greater_than Album: 8 of 75
Artist:  BEAK>
Title:  >>>
Released:  2018-09-20
Tracks:  10
Duration:  43:24
Info:  Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   The Brazilian  (04:10)
2   Brean Down  (03:51)
3   Birthday Suit  (04:29)
4   Harvester  (03:01)
5   Allé sauvage  (07:23)
6   Teisco  (02:06)
7   King of the Castle  (02:44)
8   RSI  (03:33)
9   Abbots Leigh  (06:36)
10  When We Fall  (05:31)
chris Album: 9 of 75
Artist:  Christine and the Queens
Title:  Chris
Released:  2018-09-21
Tracks:  23
Duration:  1:32:55
Info:  Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   Comme si  (03:52)
2   Girlfriend  (03:19)
3   The Walker  (04:16)
4   Doesn’t Matter  (04:23)
5   5 Dollars  (03:28)
6   Goya Soda  (05:24)
7   Damn (What Must a Woman Do)  (03:36)
8   What’s‐Her‐Face  (05:03)
9   Feel So Good  (03:45)
10  Make Some Sense  (03:20)
11  The Stranger  (04:02)
1   Comme si on s’aimait  (03:52)
2   Damn, dis‐moi  (03:19)
3   La Marcheuse  (04:16)
4   Doesn’t Matter (Voleur de Soleil)  (04:23)
5   5 dols  (03:28)
6   Goya ! Soda !  (05:24)
7   Follarse  (03:36)
8   Machin‐chose  (05:03)
9   Bruce est dans le brouillard  (03:38)
10  Le G  (03:55)
11  Les Yeux mouillés  (03:20)
12  L’Étranger (Voleur d’eau)  (04:02)
your_queen_is_a_reptile Album: 10 of 75
Artist:  Sons of Kemet
Title:  Your Queen Is a Reptile
Released:  2018-03-30
Tracks:  9
Duration:  55:29
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   My Queen Is Ada Eastman  (06:41)
2   My Queen Is Mamie Phipps Clark  (05:31)
3   My Queen Is Harriet Tubman  (05:40)
4   My Queen Is Anna Julia Cooper  (05:06)
5   My Queen Is Angela Davis  (06:35)
6   My Queen Is Nanny of the Maroons  (06:43)
7   My Queen Is Yaa Asantewaa  (07:04)
8   My Queen Is Albertina Sisulu  (05:19)
9   My Queen Is Doreen Lawrence  (06:48)
rt_the_life_and_music_of_richard_thompson Album: 11 of 75
Artist:  Richard Thompson
Title:  RT: The Life and Music of Richard Thompson
Released:  2006-02-06
Tracks:  37
Duration:  2:22:49
Info:  Review Musicbrainz

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1   Now That I Am Dead  (03:05)
2   Genesis Hall  (03:17)
3   Josef Locke  (02:45)
4   Willy O Winsbury  (04:58)
5   Dont Sit on My Jimmy Shands  (03:35)
6   Nobodys Wedding  (02:13)
7   Madonnas Wedding  (02:35)
8   Walking the Long Miles Home  (04:05)
9   Withered and Died  (03:25)
10  Beat the Retreat  (04:59)
11  The Great Valerio  (04:47)
12  Walking on a Wire  (05:26)
13  Never Again  (03:00)
14  The End of the Rainbow  (03:54)
15  King of Bohemia  (03:45)
16  Killerman Gold Posse  (01:50)
17  Lotteryland  (02:57)
18  Now Be Thankful  (03:17)
19  Shoot Out the Lights  (05:49)
20  Outside of the Inside  (04:20)
1   I Feel So Good  (03:17)
2   Push and Shove  (03:10)
3   Time to Ring Some Changes  (03:31)
4   Cooksferry Queen  (03:26)
5   Waltzings for Dreamers  (03:43)
6   I Want to See the Bright Lights Tonight  (03:20)
7   I Misunderstood  (03:51)
8   Meet on the Ledge  (03:25)
9   Down Where the Drunkards Roll  (04:20)
10  Gethsemane  (05:51)
11  Tear-Stained Letter  (03:19)
12  Wall of Death  (03:22)
13  1952 Vincent Black Lightning  (04:53)
14  From Galway to Graceland  (04:59)
15  Crazy Man Michael  (04:46)
16  Dimming of the Day  (03:50)
17  Beeswing  (05:28)
hell_on Album: 12 of 75
Artist:  Neko Case
Title:  Hell‐On
Released:  2018-06-01
Tracks:  12
Duration:  52:27
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Review Musicbrainz
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1   Hell‐On  (04:09)
2   Last Lion of Albion  (03:38)
3   Halls of Sarah  (03:50)
4   Bad Luck  (03:54)
5   Curse of the I‐5 Corridor  (07:01)
6   Gumball Blue  (04:14)
7   Dirty Diamond  (03:39)
8   Oracle of the Maritimes  (04:24)
9   Winnie  (03:50)
10  Sleep All Summer  (05:04)
11  My Uncle’s Navy  (04:12)
12  Pitch or Honey  (04:27)
Hell‐On : Allmusic album Review : Neko Case is an artist incapable of sounding like anyone other than Neko Case. Shes certainly not adverse to collaborating with artists she respects; shes been a long-time participant in the New Pornographers, and has contributed her estimable vocal talents to albums by Calexico, John Doe, Kelly Hogan, and Giant Sand, among others. But on 2016s case/lang/veirs, an album she recorded in tandem with k.d. lang and Laura Veirs, Case found herself working as an equal with two creative peers for the first time, and while her work on the album was strong, it was an example of the whole not being all youd expect from the sum of the parts. Its impossible to say if the experience informed Case as she recorded 2018s Hell-On (and since lang and Veirs both make guest appearances, their relationship is apparently cordial), but the album finds Case firmly taking the reins and seemingly relishing the experience. Case produced Hell-On (Bjorn Yttling co-produced five tracks) and co-wrote all 12 tunes (except for Eric Bachmans "Sleep All Summer"), and the rich, deeply atmospheric sound of this music has her personality written all over it. Case has a voice thats warm and engaging but speaks from a position of strength, and her instrument dominates Hell-On, expressive and emotional but never histrionic. The arrangements are beautifully detailed, with layers of guitars and keys giving the melodies full-bodied support without sounding cluttered or intruding on Cases spotlight. Even when Case shares lead vocals with Mark Lanegan on "Curse of the I-5 Corridor" and Bachman on "Sleep All Summer," she meshes beautifully but cedes nothing, and Hell-On is a superb example of an artist who can shine bright while giving others room to do their best work. And if Cases lyrics are often enigmatic, they also feel revealing and personal, from the bittersweet nostalgia of "Curse of the I-5 Corridor" and the troubled memories of "My Uncles Navy" to the playful cynicism of "Bad Luck" and the celebration of strong and empathetic women in "Winnie" and the title cut. With Hell-On, Case has once again given herself an ideal showcase for her talents as a vocalist, songwriter, and producer; its lush but intimate, and one of the strongest and most satisfying records shes delivered to date. Which, given her catalog, says a great deal.
cocoa_sugar Album: 13 of 75
Artist:  Young Fathers
Title:  Cocoa Sugar
Released:  2018-03-09
Tracks:  12
Duration:  36:50
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   See How  (02:01)
2   Fee Fi  (02:41)
3   In My View  (03:15)
4   Turn  (03:36)
5   Lord  (03:35)
6   Tremolo  (03:08)
7   Wow  (04:00)
8   Border Girl  (04:01)
9   Holy Ghost  (02:32)
10  Wire  (01:40)
11  Toy  (03:13)
12  Picking You  (03:04)
Cocoa Sugar : Allmusic album Review : After Kayus Bankole, Graham Hastings, and Alloysious Massaquoi won the Mercury Prize for Dead, they affirmed and reaffirmed that their debut album as Young Fathers was simply a start. A strong follow-up was released only six months after they accepted the award. Between the release dates of their second and third albums, amid other creative pursuits, the trio made urgent contributions to Massive Attacks Ritual Spirit and the soundtrack of T2 Trainspotting. Novelist Irvine Welsh fell so hard for his fellow Edinburgh natives that five songs off their first two albums -- in addition to the made-to-order "God Only Knows" -- were licensed for use in T2. Young Fathers fascinating evolution continues with third full-length Cocoa Sugar. Tiring of being cast as eccentrics, they set out to make comparatively straightforward material, only to end up with their least classifiable, most unique work yet. "Lord," the prelude to the album, indicated the perhaps unintended results with balefully buzzing avant-gospel. Its vague cluster of pained and plainly spoken lyrics are capped with a seemingly disconnected statement -- "While the government wants to control, her culture will set you free" -- that jumps off the page but is delivered during the fade-out like an afterthought. Other instances of bloody-mindedness can be heard in the near concealment of hooks that require close listening to be heard. Theyre often deliberately distanced from the battery of contrasting vocal lines, laser FX, and rhythms that churn, batter, and rattle, whether evoking Krautrock bands or African tribes. One aspect that does shoot clear through is the high level of ferocity on display throughout a latter-half stretch that concerns immigration and desperate survivalism. It culminates in "Holy Ghost," which jitters and battle-peacocks like Kendrick Lamars "King Kunta," a rare obvious point of reference. In a way, the crammed, almost impenetrable layers of sound recall specific phases of Simple Minds (Sons and Fascination/Sister Feelings Call), Associates (Sulk), and maybe even Cocteau Twins (the darker parts of Head Over Heels). Like those Scottish post-punk recordings, Cocoa Sugar mystifies before it gratifies, but it reflects a modern global chaos as much as it does a personal one.
the_prodigal_son Album: 14 of 75
Artist:  Ry Cooder
Title:  The Prodigal Son
Released:  2018-05-11
Tracks:  11
Duration:  49:55
Info:  Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   Straight Street  (04:00)
2   Shrinking Man  (04:07)
3   Gentrification  (03:14)
4   Everybody Ought To Treat a Stranger Right  (03:46)
5   The Prodigal Son  (04:38)
6   Nobody’s Fault But Mine  (06:08)
7   You Must Unload  (05:26)
8   I’ll Be Rested When the Roll Is Called  (03:12)
9   Harbor of Love  (05:47)
10  Jesus and Woody  (05:58)
11  In His Care  (03:39)
look_now Album: 15 of 75
Artist:  Elvis Costello & The Imposters
Title:  Look Now
Released:  2018-10-12
Tracks:  12
Duration:  47:16
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   Under Lime  (05:34)
2   Don’t Look Now  (02:28)
3   Burnt Sugar Is So Bitter  (04:16)
4   Stripping Paper  (03:52)
5   Unwanted Number  (03:33)
6   I Let the Sun Go Down  (04:26)
7   Mr. and Mrs. Hush  (03:46)
8   Photographs Can Lie  (03:38)
9   Dishonor the Stars  (03:18)
10  Suspect My Tears  (04:49)
11  Why Won’t Heaven Help Me?  (03:22)
12  He’s Given Me Things  (04:08)
Look Now : Allmusic album Review : Elvis Costello had already taken a few steps from the "angry young man" persona that dominated his first two albums by the time he began work on 1982s Imperial Bedroom, but that was the disc where his evolution from brash upsetter to gifted pop craftsman began in earnest. In 2017, Costello staged a concert tour in which he re-imagined the songs from that LP, and while that may or may not have put those tunes and their style back into his mind, 2018s Look Now certainly is an extension of the mature and literate pop songwriting that he first fully embraced in that material. Look Now often feels like a cross between Imperial Bedroom and Painted from Memory, Costellos 1998 collaboration with Burt Bacharach, and not just because Bacharach co-wrote three tracks with Costello. (Another pop tunesmith in the classic tradition, Carole King, also helped compose one of the tunes, "Burnt Sugar Is So Bitter.") Look Now isnt rock & roll so much as its pop that blends the craft of classic Brill Building tunes of the 60s with the narrative maturity of classic Broadway musicals and the sort of ballads that were once the purview of classic jazz vocalists. If youre the sort of Costello fan who lives in hope that hes going to make another This Years Model or Blood & Chocolate someday, Look Now will not be your cup of tea. But if youre in the mood for a set of world-class songs dealing with grown-up themes and performed with nuance and a masters touch, you could hardly do better. As a vocalist, Costellos phrasing and ability to inhabit a character has rarely been more assured, so much so that he sings a few songs from the point of view of a female protagonist and makes them work (including "Hes Given Me Things" and "Unwanted Number," the latter written for the film Grace of My Heart). The arrangements are artful and evocative, with subtle applications of strings and backing vocalists and pianist Steve Nieve once again reminding us why hes been one of Costellos most valued musical partners since the late 70s. And while there are just enough sharp angles in "Under Lime" and "Mr. & Mrs. Hush" to remind us this is indeed Elvis Costello, Look Now is the work of a man with enough talent to take his muse in any direction he pleases and give us something memorable. In 1978, the Arrogant Young Mr. Costello famously said, "Im not going to be around to witness my artistic decline," and 40 years on, Look Now proves hes still living up to that claim.
transangelic_exodus Album: 16 of 75
Artist:  Ezra Furman
Title:  Transangelic Exodus
Released:  2018-02-09
Tracks:  13
Duration:  42:24
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Suck the Blood From My Wound  (04:48)
2   Driving Down to L.A.  (03:18)
3   God Lifts Up the Lowly  (03:49)
4   No Place  (03:36)
5   The Great Unknown  (02:47)
6   Compulsive Liar  (02:45)
7   Maraschino‐Red Dress $8.99 at Goodwill  (02:30)
8   From a Beach House  (02:34)
9   Love You So Bad  (03:39)
10  Come Here Get Away From Me  (03:55)
11  Peel My Orange Every Morning  (01:41)
12  Psalm 151  (03:39)
13  I Lost My Innocence  (03:21)
tell_me_how_you_really_feel Album: 17 of 75
Artist:  Courtney Barnett
Title:  Tell Me How You Really Feel
Released:  2018-05-18
Tracks:  10
Duration:  37:16
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   Hopefulessness  (04:48)
2   City Looks Pretty  (04:41)
3   Charity  (04:10)
4   Need a Little Time  (03:58)
5   Nameless, Faceless  (03:14)
6   I’m Not Your Mother, I’m Not Your Bitch  (01:50)
7   Crippling Self‐Doubt and a General Lack of Self Confidence  (02:48)
8   Help Your Self  (03:02)
9   Walkin’ on Eggshells  (04:01)
10  Sunday Roast  (04:44)
Tell Me How You Really Feel : Allmusic album Review : Courtney Barnett specializes in miniatures, which is why her 2015 debut, Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit, was such a wonder: with barbed words and gnarled guitars, she made everyday minutiae seem compelling. Three years in the making -- it was delayed in part due to a 2017 collaboration with Kurt Vile -- the 2018 sequel, Tell Me How You Really Feel, plays like the flip image of its predecessor. What once was captivating now feels indifferent, delivered with a shrug instead of a snarl. Everything about Tell Me How You Really Feel seems muted, whether its the grungy stomp of Barnett and her band -- a group that remains steadfastly and proudly stuck in the glory days of 90s alt-rock -- or her words, which now seem to meander to a point instead of cutting to the quick. As shes a good craftswoman, the songs are by and large sturdy, but that talent also cuts against the success of Tell Me How You Really Feel: when theyre matched with the appealing yet incurious performances, everything feels a bit too cozy. Sometimes, a hook or a clever line cuts through the amiable haze -- and "Charity," with its chorus of "so subservient I make myself sick," manages to blend both -- but Tell Me How You Really Feel isnt an album of moments, its a collection that sustains a mood: a mood thats ragged and slack, but too dulled to charm.
all_nerve Album: 18 of 75
Artist:  The Breeders
Title:  All Nerve
Released:  2018-03-02
Tracks:  11
Duration:  33:54
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   Nervous Mary  (02:29)
2   Wait in the Car  (02:03)
3   All Nerve  (02:11)
4   MetaGoth  (03:08)
5   Spacewoman  (04:21)
6   Walking With a Killer  (03:45)
7   Howl at the Summit  (02:57)
8   Archangel’s Thunderbird  (03:25)
9   Dawn: Making an Effort  (03:50)
10  Skinhead #2  (02:45)
11  Blues at the Acropolis  (02:56)
All Nerve : Allmusic album Review : The Breeders have always moved to their own rhythms, starting, stopping, and surprising listeners along the way. New music from them only arrives when the time is right, and in All Nerves case, it was especially right: in 2013, Kim and Kelley Deal reunited with drummer Jim McPherson and bassist Josephine Wiggs to tour as part of the 20th anniversary celebration of their breakthrough album, Last Splash, and the dates went so well that the band went into the studio. At times, All Nerve does hark back to 1993. The way "Nervous Mary" slowly draws listeners into the album before kicking into high gear is a classic Breeders move. "Spacewoman," with its sun-soaked imagery and loud-quiet-loud dynamic shifts, is a power ballad made for the mosh pit, while the tender to roaring "All Nerve" is the kind of plainspoken song about a big, big love that has always been one of Kim Deals specialties. Then theres "Wait in the Car," one of the bands most irresistible singles. As Deal fails to find the right words and meows while the guitars strut and tumble, its as brashly charming as "Cannonball" -- and proves the Breeders havent lost the ability to make their audience wish they could be best friends with them. However, All Nerve isnt so much a conscious attempt to re-create the past as it is the rekindling of a special chemistry. That chemistry is especially strong when the Breeders try new things. Wiggs gets her first lead vocal on an album track with "MetaGoth," and her unflappable cool gives it a dark, restless post-punk beauty that isnt like anything else in the Breeders songbook. Meanwhile, "Dawn: Making an Effort" is as vast and hopeful as a sunrise, with an openness thats all the more heartwarming because its so unexpected. The band even finds creative ways of dealing with the feelings of mortality and history that accompany this kind of reunion on "Walking with a Killer," a deceptively pretty tale of murder in the cornfields, and "Blues at the Acropolis," which superimposes modern junkies and drunks with dead heroes of the past. The decade-long gap between All Nerve and Mountain Battles was the Breeders longest hiatus yet, but it was time well spent -- this is one of the bands finest blends of sugar and swagger, space and noise. All Nerve lives up to its name: the Breeders one-of-a-kind toughness and vulnerability are the heart of their music, and that its still beating strong is cause for celebration.
all_that_reckoning Album: 19 of 75
Artist:  Cowboy Junkies
Title:  All That Reckoning
Released:  2018-07-13
Tracks:  11
Duration:  46:24
Info:  Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   All That Reckoning (Part 1)  (03:52)
2   When We Arrive  (04:31)
3   The Things We Do to Each Other  (03:57)
4   Wooden Stairs  (04:22)
5   Sing Me a Song  (04:21)
6   Mountain Stream  (04:51)
7   Missing Children  (03:40)
8   Shining Teeth  (04:41)
9   Nose Before Ear  (04:16)
10  All That Reckoning (Part 2)  (04:30)
11  The Possessed  (03:23)
boarding_house_reach Album: 20 of 75
Artist:  Jack White
Title:  Boarding House Reach
Released:  2018-03-23
Tracks:  13
Duration:  44:10
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Lyrics Musicbrainz
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1   Connected by Love  (04:38)
2   Why Walk a Dog?  (02:29)
3   Corporation  (05:39)
4   Abulia and Akrasia  (01:28)
5   Hypermisophoniac  (03:35)
6   Ice Station Zebra  (03:59)
7   Over and Over and Over  (03:36)
8   Everything You’ve Ever Learned  (02:13)
9   Respect Commander  (04:33)
10  Ezmerelda Steals the Show  (01:43)
11  Get in the Mind Shaft  (04:13)
12  What’s Done Is Done  (02:55)
13  Humoresque  (03:09)
Boarding House Reach : Allmusic album Review : Due to his affection for prewar music and myths, Jack White often gets pigeonholed as a blues-rock revivalist -- an assessment that isnt so much wrong as it is incomplete. Even in the earliest days of the White Stripes, White limited his aural palette with deliberate zeal, a practice he sustained through the Stripes as well as his first two solo albums. Boarding House Reach is where he expands his horizons and that discipline begins to fracture, and quite intentionally so. "Connected by Love" -- the albums opening track and first single -- is a rousing bit of arena rock and the only cut that could truly have appeared on either Blunderbuss or Lazaretto. Once that song draws to a close, White dives into a moody electronic meditation called "Why Walk a Dog?" -- an oddity thats quickly eclipsed by the hard funk of "Corporation," a song that marks the third different sound in as many tracks. Things get progressively stranger from this point forward. Recitations commingle with raps, gurgling synthesizers tangle with blues piano, operatic overdubs are paired with fuzz guitars, sci-fi send-ups meet their match with short stories. Every moment suggests that White is kicking against the pricks, desperate to be seen as a modern rock artist, not a fusty throwback. While his attempt at redefinition is a success -- theres no question that this is the work of an artist willing to take risks -- its an open question whether Boarding House Reach succeeds as an album. Its diffuse nature is enthralling, but it also means that the record has a halting momentum -- a perhaps inevitable byproduct of a musician eager to drive himself into the ditch. Another odd element of Boarding House Reach is how, despite his thirst to get weird, White is by nature a very regimented artist who has a desire to have everything in its right place. "Corporation" and "Ice Station Zebra," the two funkiest numbers here, illustrate this with their precise grooves, but even the self-consciously weird interludes show this same level of exactitude. While that keeps Boarding House Reach somewhat in a straitjacket, it also makes it a fascinating listen, because its a document of a control freak anxious to get loose.
heaven_and_earth Album: 21 of 75
Artist:  Kamasi Washington
Title:  Heaven and Earth
Released:  2018-06-22
Tracks:  21
Duration:  3:02:59
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Fists of Fury  (09:42)
2   Can You Hear Him  (08:54)
3   Hub‐Tones  (09:09)
4   Connections  (08:23)
5   Tiffakonkae  (09:24)
6   The Invincible Youth  (09:52)
7   Testify  (05:43)
8   One of One  (09:50)
1   The Space Travelers Lullaby  (10:31)
2   Vi Lua Vi Sol  (11:06)
3   Street Fighter Mas  (05:57)
4   Song for the Fallen  (12:41)
5   Journey  (08:50)
6   The Psalmnist  (07:18)
7   Show Us the Way  (06:51)
8   Will You Sing  (10:12)
1   The Secret of Jinsinson  (08:07)
2   Will You Love Me Tomorrow  (09:40)
3   My Family  (06:34)
4   Agents of Multiverse  (05:22)
5   Ooh Child  (08:53)
gods_favorite_customer Album: 22 of 75
Artist:  Father John Misty
Title:  God’s Favorite Customer
Released:  2018-06-01
Tracks:  10
Duration:  38:34
Info:  Discogs Lyrics Musicbrainz
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1   Hangout at the Gallows  (04:55)
2   Mr. Tillman  (03:03)
3   Just Dumb Enough to Try  (04:02)
4   Date Night  (02:30)
5   Please Don’t Die  (03:24)
6   The Palace  (04:09)
7   Disappointing Diamonds Are the Rarest of Them All  (02:23)
8   God’s Favorite Customer  (05:21)
9   The Songwriter  (03:45)
10  We’re Only People (And There’s Not Much Anyone Can Do About That)  (05:02)
bottle_it_in Album: 23 of 75
Artist:  Kurt Vile
Title:  Bottle It In
Released:  2018-10-12
Tracks:  13
Duration:  1:18:44
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Lyrics Musicbrainz
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1   Loading Zones  (03:23)
2   Hysteria  (05:22)
3   Yeah Bones  (04:44)
4   Bassackwards  (09:46)
5   One Trick Ponies  (05:21)
6   Rollin With the Flow  (02:59)
7   Check Baby  (07:53)
1   Bottle It In  (10:39)
2   Mutinies  (05:52)
3   Come Again  (05:44)
4   Cold Was the Wind  (04:51)
5   Skinny Mini  (10:26)
6   (bottle back)  (01:38)
Bottle It In : Allmusic album Review : Following the dusky wandering of 2015s Blieve Im Goin Down... and the sometimes cloying 2017 Courtney Barnett collaboration Lotta Sea Lice, restless workingman Kurt Vile looked to his time in transit for his seventh album, Bottle It In. The songs here were recorded over the course of two years in various studios and locations across the U.S., and Vile assembled them between tours and road-trip vacations with his family. That sense of motion touches much of Bottle It In, an album that sees Vile extending his sonic vocabulary with more complex arrangements and drawn-out songs that wash by like changing scenery viewed from the passenger seat. By this point, Vile has settled into the finer points of his persona, that of the stony but observant psychic drifter, grinning through his disarming rock repetitions with equal parts humor, bite, and guitar solos. He wears all of it confidently on the songs where he can explore, notably the almost ten-minute two-chord ramble of "Bassackwards." The song stealthily accumulates layers of synths, piano, and guitar textures as Vile strolls in a disoriented lyrical fog, evoking images of beaches, time passing, and stilted attempts at communicating. That the several songs stretching past the ten-minute mark can stay engaging and even exciting at such lengths is a testament to how comfortable the songwriter has grown in his craft. At almost 11 minutes, the title track is another unlikely standout, a dusty old-timey loop building patiently into an epic journey that includes Mary Lattimores plaintive harp and Cass McCombs providing harmonies to Viles yo-yoing vocal melodies and stream-of-consciousness lyrical sprawl. The almost mantra-like tune unfolds into subdued horn arrangements that float along with dreamy guitar lines. The song takes a while to get where its going, but all is revealed in time. If anything, the filler on Bottle It In happens in the more compact numbers. At well over an hour running time, shorter tunes like the breezy AM radio-modeled "Rollin with the Flow" and the upbeat rocker "Yeah Bones" feel formulaic and out of place next to more experimentally structured fare. If the flow of the album can sometimes feel longwinded, the fluid approach to instrumentation means theres always a new detail around the corner for those paying attention. Bass synths growl playfully on "Check Baby," a film of melodic feedback coats the ending of "Mutinies," and a chorus of drunken friends comes from out of nowhere to help sing the good-natured lovefest of "One Trick Ponies." While sometimes disjointed or lingering, Bottle It In finds Viles production at its most colorful and curious. Making the most of the various environments where it was recorded, the album feels like a travel diary picked up sporadically along the way. Some entries expand on every thought and some are left half-finished, but these contrasting moods reflect the peaks and valleys of Viles journey, both literal and metaphorical, in getting to this chapter of his music.
true_meanings Album: 24 of 75
Artist:  Paul Weller
Title:  True Meanings
Released:  2018-08-14
Tracks:  14
Duration:  54:53
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   The Soul Searchers  (05:01)
2   Glide  (02:18)
3   Mayfly  (04:00)
4   Gravity  (02:33)
5   Old Castles  (03:20)
6   What Would He Say?  (04:00)
7   Aspects  (04:33)
8   Bowie  (03:53)
9   Wishing Well  (04:36)
10  Come Along  (03:03)
11  Books  (04:35)
12  Movin On  (04:31)
13  May Love Travel With You  (03:01)
14  White Horses  (05:24)
may_your_kindness_remain Album: 25 of 75
Artist:  Courtney Marie Andrews
Title:  May Your Kindness Remain
Released:  2018-03-23
Tracks:  10
Duration:  43:03
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   May Your Kindness Remain  (03:54)
2   Lift the Lonely from My Heart  (04:57)
3   Two Cold Nights in Buffalo  (03:28)
4   Rough Around the Edges  (04:11)
5   Border  (03:55)
6   Took You Up  (04:46)
7   This House  (04:03)
8   Kindness of Strangers  (03:30)
9   I’ve Hurt Worse  (04:14)
10  Long Road Back to You  (06:01)
the_tree_of_forgiveness Album: 26 of 75
Artist:  John Prine
Title:  The Tree of Forgiveness
Released:  2018-04-13
Tracks:  10
Duration:  32:54
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Knockin’ on Your Screen Door  (02:19)
2   I Have Met My Love Today  (01:50)
3   Egg & Daughter Nite, Lincoln Nebraska, 1967 (Crazy Bone)  (04:05)
4   Summer’s End  (03:29)
5   Caravan of Fools  (02:28)
6   Lonesome Friends of Science  (04:41)
7   No Ordinary Blue  (02:56)
8   Boundless Love  (03:35)
9   God Only Knows  (03:46)
10  When I Get to Heaven  (03:42)
joy_as_an_act_of_resistance Album: 27 of 75
Artist:  IDLES
Title:  Joy as an Act of Resistance.
Released:  2018-08-31
Tracks:  12
Duration:  42:23
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   Colossus  (05:39)
2   Never Fight a Man With a Perm  (03:48)
3   I’m Scum  (03:09)
4   Danny Nedelko  (03:24)
5   Love Song  (03:05)
6   June  (03:35)
7   Samaritans  (03:30)
8   Television  (03:12)
9   Great  (02:44)
10  Gram Rock  (02:28)
11  Cry to Me  (02:24)
12  Rottweiler  (05:25)
Joy as an Act of Resistance. : Allmusic album Review : Despite lacking the element of surprise, Idles second album finds the band as vital as ever while simultaneously exploring darker and lighter hues; they have managed to follow up on Brutalism with a record that is not only more explosive but also doubles down on humor and genuine sentiment. Clearly, theyve been taking cues from their live shows -- which have increased exponentially since their debut -- as Joy as an Act of Resistance is just as chaotic but isnt quite as tight and often feels like its bursting at the seams. What remains irrefutable is the sense of urgency, delivered to such a degree that it casts shade on other bands who claim to be raucous. Proceedings start in familiar territory, with opening track "Colossus" mimicking the buildup structure of "Heel/Heal" before launching into a stream of pop culture references -- of which there are many throughout the record. From there, much of Joy as an Act of Resistance is an often hilarious trip through a myriad of societal issues, taking a slanted, sarcastic, and frothing shot at every subject. Whats most interesting about Idles is that they dont trade in 2-D rage; they point a finger at very specific targets before laughing directly at them, and its more nuanced than anger for angers sake. In particular, their dismantling of masculinity is impeccable, as they encourage expression of emotions and the inclusivity of everyone without succumbing to the tired beta-male diatribe spewed by certain detractors; this reaches its pinnacle on veritable highlight "Samaritans," which lists various phrases aimed at young men that only entrench stunted emotional growth. It runs the risk of being overwhelming, if not for the sense of elation that Talbot brings to the table, masterfully exemplified by his staunch defense of immigration on "Danny Nedelko," which is both a personal case for a good friend -- the lead vocalist of Heavy Lungs -- and a series of more relatable characters that immigration has brought to the U.K. Most importantly, the track swells to such manic levels of celebratory joy that it inescapably sweeps everything along with it. Conversely, the linchpin of the album, "June," features heartbreaking lyrics and is easily the most personal song for Talbot; it entails the tragic loss of his baby daughter, an honest and brave move, especially considering how recently that unfortunate event took place. In a move almost possible to predict, Idles have also included a full-blown cover with their own rendition of Solomon Burkes "Cry to Me," which works more than it really should, both thematically and in this new crunchier form. Overall, Joy as an Act of Resistance manages to plumb new depths for Idles -- that theyve achieved another record in such a short space of time is admirable, let alone one that shines head and shoulders over the majority of their peers -- and it certainly upholds their status as one of the U.K.s most exciting new acts.
lamp_lit_prose Album: 28 of 75
Artist:  Dirty Projectors
Title:  Lamp Lit Prose
Released:  2018-07-13
Tracks:  10
Duration:  37:24
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   Right Now  (03:38)
2   Break‐thru  (03:47)
3   That’s a Lifestyle  (04:23)
4   I Feel Energy  (04:36)
5   Zombie Conquerer  (03:45)
6   Blue Bird  (03:49)
7   I Found It in U  (03:27)
8   What Is the Time  (03:15)
9   You’re the One  (02:18)
10  (I Wanna) Feel It All  (04:22)
Lamp Lit Prose : Allmusic album Review : "I dont know how Im gonna be a better man/I dont know how Im gonna reach the promised land/I dont know how Im gonna get you to take my hand/But Im gonna start and I know when." With these words in the first track on Dirty Projectors 2018 release Lamp Lit Prose, David Longstreth (the groups leader and solo constant member) shares the good news: hes feeling better now. On 2017s self-titled Dirty Projectors, Longstreth was reeling from a tough romantic breakup, and a dark mood dominated the material, as well as a greater reliance on electronics and vocal manipulation. The cooler textures and digital sheen of that album certainly informs Lamp Lit Prose, but this time out the music has a much more organic feel, with natural horns, guitars, strings, and percussion dancing within the electronic frameworks. Theres a palpable joy in this music that hasnt been so strong in Longstreths work since 2009s breakthrough Bitte Orca, and while it never turns sappy, Lamp Lit Prose speaks of hope and second chances in the more optimistic tone of the music, reinforced by the percolating rhythms, the breathy harmonies, and the angular enthusiasm of the guitar work. Like Bitte Orca, Lamp Lit Prose is a genuinely adventurous work, not shy about pointing to Dirty Projectors experimental roots, but the material also sounds bright, playful, and engaging, accessible even when the melodies and meters take unexpected left turns. And while HAIM, Amber Mark, Syd (of the Internet), Robin Pecknold (of Fleet Foxes) and Empress Of all contribute their talents to these songs, this is very much David Longstreths music, and its heartfelt, passionate, and beguiling in the tradition of Dirty Projectors best work.
im_all_ears Album: 29 of 75
Artist:  Let’s Eat Grandma
Title:  I’m All Ears
Released:  2018-06-29
Tracks:  11
Duration:  51:31
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Whitewater  (01:55)
2   Hot Pink  (04:08)
3   It’s Not Just Me  (03:55)
4   Falling Into Me  (05:46)
5   Snakes & Ladders  (05:57)
6   Missed Call (1)  (00:37)
7   I Will Be Waiting  (04:23)
8   The Cat’s Pyjamas  (01:05)
9   Cool & Collected  (09:17)
10  Ava  (03:04)
11  Donnie Darko  (11:19)
radyo_siwel Album: 30 of 75
Artist:  Mélissa Laveaux
Title:  Radyo Siwèl
Released:  2018-02-02
Tracks:  12
Duration:  40:22
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Lè Ma Monte Chwal Mwen  (03:32)
2   Nan Fon Bwa  (03:21)
3   Angeli-ko  (03:38)
4   Kouzen  (02:21)
5   Simalo  (02:54)
6   Jolibwa  (02:55)
7   Tolalito  (04:28)
8   Twa Fey  (04:28)
9   Legba Na Konsole  (02:44)
10  Lasirèn Labalèn  (01:11)
11  Nibo  (03:17)
12  Panama Mwen Tombe  (05:33)
pastoral Album: 31 of 75
Artist:  Gazelle Twin
Title:  Pastoral
Released:  2018-09-21
Tracks:  14
Duration:  37:23
Info:  Lyrics Musicbrainz
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1   Folly  (01:10)
2   Better in My Day  (02:49)
3   Little Lambs  (03:40)
4   Old Thorn  (02:05)
5   Dieu et mon droit  (03:41)
6   Throne  (01:36)
7   Mongrel  (02:41)
8   Glory  (05:06)
9   Tea Rooms  (02:40)
10  Jerusalem  (01:10)
11  Dance of the Peddlers  (03:04)
12  Hobby Horse  (03:51)
13  Sunny Stories  (03:11)
14  Over the Hills  (00:39)
le_kov Album: 32 of 75
Artist:  Gwenno
Title:  Le Kov
Released:  2018-03-02
Tracks:  10
Duration:  44:22
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Hi a Skoellyas Liv a Dhagrow  (05:34)
2   Tir Ha Mor  (04:10)
3   Herdhya  (02:48)
4   Eus Keus?  (04:59)
5   Jynn‐amontya  (05:50)
6   Den Heb Taves  (06:21)
7   Daromres y’n Howl  (03:16)
8   Aremorika  (03:10)
9   Hunros  (02:32)
10  Koweth Ker  (05:42)
jassbusters Album: 33 of 75
Artist:  Connan Mockasin
Title:  Jassbusters
Released:  2018-10-12
Tracks:  8
Duration:  34:42
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Charlottes Thong  (08:56)
2   Momos  (03:38)
3   Last Night  (05:08)
4   You Can Do Anything  (01:47)
5   Con Conn Was Impatient  (03:15)
6   BnD  (03:36)
7   Sexy Man  (04:06)
8   Les Be Honest  (04:13)
microshift Album: 34 of 75
Artist:  Hookworms
Title:  Microshift
Released:  2018-02-02
Tracks:  9
Duration:  46:22
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Negative Space  (06:56)
2   Static Resistance  (03:38)
3   Ullswater  (07:08)
4   The Soft Season  (04:00)
5   Opener  (08:36)
6   Each Time We Pass  (05:15)
7   Boxing Day  (02:18)
8   Reunion  (02:51)
9   Shortcomings  (05:40)
mozarts_mini_mart Album: 35 of 75
Artist:  Go-Kart Mozart
Title:  Mozarts Mini-Mart
Released:  2018-02-23
Tracks:  17
Duration:  34:11
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Anagram of We Sold Apes  (02:35)
2   When Youre Depressed  (02:55)
3   Relative Poverty  (02:52)
4   Zeldas in the Spotlight  (02:47)
5   Big Ship  (02:23)
6   Nub-End in a Coke Can  (00:55)
7   A Black Hood on His Head  (02:25)
8   Facing the Scorn of Tomorrows Generation  (01:34)
9   A New World  (02:19)
10  Im Dope  (01:27)
11  Crokadile Rokstarz  (02:00)
12  Knickers on the Line by 3 Chord Fraud  (01:09)
13  Chromium-Plated Were So Elated  (03:09)
14  Man of Two Sides  (00:49)
15  Farewell to Tarzan Harvey  (01:22)
16  A Ding Ding Ding Ding Dong!!  (02:48)
17  Anagram 1st Prize Reprize  (00:42)
go_to_school Album: 36 of 75
Artist:  The Lemon Twigs
Title:  Go to School
Released:  2018-08-24
Tracks:  16
Duration:  58:50
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Never in My Arms, Always in My Heart  (02:59)
2   The Student Becomes the Teacher  (03:09)
3   Rock Dreams  (05:39)
4   The Lesson  (03:13)
5   Small Victories  (03:56)
6   Wonderin’ Ways  (02:46)
7   The Bully  (03:44)
8   Lonely  (03:41)
9   Queen of My School  (04:40)
10  Never Know  (03:47)
11  Born Wrong / Heart Song  (03:14)
12  The Fire  (06:05)
13  Home of a Heart (The Woods)  (04:11)
14  This Is My Tree  (03:32)
15  If You Give Enough  (02:49)
16  Go to School  (01:17)
sparkle_hard Album: 37 of 75
Artist:  Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks
Title:  Sparkle Hard
Released:  2018-05-18
Tracks:  11
Duration:  43:45
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Cast Off  (02:54)
2   Future Suite  (02:43)
3   Solid Silk  (04:37)
4   Bike Lane  (03:34)
5   Middle America  (03:31)
6   Rattler  (03:08)
7   Shiggy  (03:16)
8   Kite  (06:40)
9   Brethren  (02:51)
10  Refute  (03:24)
11  Difficulties / Let Them Eat Vowels  (07:03)
the_thread_that_keeps_us Album: 38 of 75
Artist:  Calexico
Title:  The Thread That Keeps Us
Released:  2018-01-26
Tracks:  22
Duration:  1:07:14
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   End of the World With You  (03:08)
2   Voices in the Field  (03:26)
3   Bridge to Nowhere  (03:07)
4   Spinball  (01:11)
5   Under the Wheels  (03:23)
6   The Town & Miss Lorraine  (02:39)
7   Flores y tamales  (02:47)
8   Another Space  (03:55)
9   Unconditional Waltz  (01:38)
10  Girl in the Forest  (02:46)
11  Eyes Wide Awake  (04:20)
12  Dead in the Water  (02:37)
13  Shortboard  (01:57)
14  Thrown to the Wild  (04:47)
15  Music Box  (02:55)
1   Longboard  (03:03)
2   Luna Roja  (03:43)
3   Curse of the Ride  (02:51)
4   Inside the Energy Field  (01:17)
5   Lost Inside  (04:30)
6   End of the Night  (03:30)
7   Dream on Mount Tam  (03:44)
The Thread That Keeps Us : Allmusic album Review : Calexico spent the 2010s venturing from their Tucson home to make albums such as their New Orleans love letter Algiers and their ambitious trip to Mexico City, Edge of the Sun. For The Thread That Keeps Us, they decamped to the Northern California coast and recorded in a studio they nicknamed the Phantom Ship -- another change of scenery that allowed them to cast their sounds and songwriting wider than ever. They set the tone for the album with "End of the World with You," where they find "love in the age of extremes" and rough up their jangly pop with some of their wildest solos yet. This need to find -- and sometimes fight for -- moments of joy and truth during hard times resonates on every track of The Thread That Keeps Us. Calexico have never shied away from social commentary, and they express the urgency of the late 2010s on unflinching songs like "Eyes Wide Awake" and "Dead in the Water," a snarling, stomping portrait of consumption and destruction. The band conveys this devastation more subtly -- and even more artfully -- on "Thrown to the Wild"s hazy ruminations and on "Voices in the Field," where their outrage smolders rather than blazes. Fortunately, Calexico spend as much time enjoying the world as trying to save it on The Thread That Keeps Us. Northern Californias mellow beauty seeps into "Girl in the Forest" and balances its ecological concerns with a peaceful vibe. Elsewhere, the bands flair for vivid imagery comes to the fore on "The Town & Miss Lorraine," which combines an old woman, a book of stories from a sunken ship, and plenty of rum into a haunting vignette. However, Calexico sound the most joyous when theyre exploring the eclectic mix of sounds at which theyve always excelled. The albums midsection is frequently thrilling: "Flores y Tamales" is an equally funky and majestic update of the bands earliest days; the gritty beats and brass on "Under the Wheels" hark back to Feast of Wire; and the restless percussion and squalling trumpets of "Another Space" make it one of the bands most rewarding experiments. By turns gentle and bold, traditional and boundary-pushing, The Thread That Keeps Us is another fine example of Calexicos ever-broadening horizons.
rebound Album: 39 of 75
Artist:  Eleanor Friedberger
Title:  Rebound
Released:  2018-05-04
Tracks:  10
Duration:  40:10
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   My Jesus Phase  (03:46)
2   The Letter  (03:48)
3   Everything  (03:51)
4   In Between Stars  (03:29)
5   Make Me a Song  (05:32)
6   Nice to Be Nowhere  (04:51)
7   It’s Hard  (03:35)
8   Are We Good?  (03:52)
9   Showy Early Spring  (02:55)
10  Rule of Action  (04:26)
tranquility_base_hotel_casino Album: 40 of 75
Artist:  Arctic Monkeys
Title:  Tranquility Base Hotel + Casino
Released:  2018-05-11
Tracks:  11
Duration:  40:51
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   Star Treatment  (05:54)
2   One Point Perspective  (03:28)
3   American Sports  (02:38)
4   Tranquility Base Hotel + Casino  (03:31)
5   Golden Trunks  (02:53)
6   Four Out of Five  (05:12)
7   The World’s First Ever Monster Truck Front Flip  (03:00)
8   Science Fiction  (03:05)
9   She Looks Like Fun  (03:02)
10  Batphone  (04:31)
11  The Ultracheese  (03:37)
Tranquility Base Hotel + Casino : Allmusic album Review : It was inevitable that Alex Turner would incorporate the loungey swagger of his busmans holiday the Last Shadow Puppets into his main gig of the Arctic Monkeys, yet the soft louche touch of Tranquility Base Hotel + Casino comes as something of a shock. Chalk it up, perhaps, to the fact that Turner was a mere 32 years old when he unleashed Tranquility Base Hotel + Casino onto the world, a young age that seems older because Arctic Monkeys released their debut when he was just 19. Throughout Tranquility Base, Turner comes across as if he were much, much older than his actual age, cocking an eyebrow to a potential paramour who has the audacity to have never seen Blade Runner, and reminiscing about the 70s -- a decade he never saw. He may have been born at the height of Brothers in Arms, but Turner fetishes the swinging sci-fi 60s, winking at futurism while acknowledging that its starry potential has curdled in the digital age. Tranquility Base hints at these dashed dreams in its stylish soft contours, which are neither retro nor modern: theyre hung suspended between these two extremes, sounding precisely like Alex Turner while never touching upon the frenzied, heavy roar of the Monkeys. Perhaps its easy to miss that youthful punchiness, but the expansive aural horizons of Tranquility Base Hotel + Casino suggest there are plenty of avenues for Turner to steer Arctic Monkeys into a fruitful middle age. So, its an accomplished, slyly snappy, and admirable affair, and yet there still seems to be something lacking -- namely, songs that stick. Turner nails the concept, wallowing in warped dreams and painting widescreen soundscapes, but the foundation is wobbly; at a glance, its impressive, but the slipshod details reveal themselves upon close inspection.
wanderer Album: 41 of 75
Artist:  Cat Power
Title:  Wanderer
Released:  2018-10-05
Tracks:  11
Duration:  38:02
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   Wanderer  (01:14)
2   In Your Face  (04:12)
3   You Get  (03:43)
4   Woman  (04:51)
5   Horizon  (04:24)
6   Stay  (03:58)
7   Black  (03:57)
8   Robbin Hood  (02:11)
9   Nothing Really Matters  (03:12)
10  Me voy  (04:00)
11  Wanderer/Exit  (02:20)
Wanderer : Allmusic album Review : Cat Powers Chan Marshall releases albums so infrequently that when they arrive, theyre an event -- and the six years between Sun and Wanderer were certainly eventful for her. The day Sun was released, Marshall nearly died; eventually, she was diagnosed with an immune disorder that hindered her ability to tour in support of the album. She then discovered she was pregnant with the son she gave birth to in 2015, and creative differences with her longtime label Matador led her to release Wanderer on Domino Records. These are the kind of life-changing events that, with any luck, make a person stronger. If Wanderer is anything to go by, Marshall must be unstoppable. She packs the enormity of her experiences into songs that are fearless in their starkness, and a far cry from Suns sleek electro-rock. This time, Marshall focuses her production and arrangements on her voice, which has become the instrument her songs have always needed. A little raspier than before and as remarkably emotive as always, its so full of living that no flashy accompaniment is needed on songs such as the title track. One of the albums briefest and most beautiful moments, "Wanderers" heart-melting harmonies grace a song that could be an eternal lament handed down for generations. Throughout the album, Marshall feels completely in command of the folk, blues, and soul that have lurked around the margins of her music since the beginning and made up the heart of The Greatest. Even as she says goodbye on almost every track, from "Me Voy"s sultry regret to the serenely devastating "Horizon," Wanderer returns to sounds that are in her blood. She subtly modernizes these traditions while tapping into their timeless power: "Black" is another in her series of songs about friends who have died, and the way Marshall contrasts folk- and blues-based mythologizing with a very modern streak of survivors guilt makes it one of her most spellbinding. "Robbin Hood," with its vicious cycle of literal and spiritual theft, could have been written in the shadow of the Great Depression or the Great Recession. Conversely, Marshall also incorporates 2010s touches in ways that sound classic and, above all, genuine. On "Woman," she and Lana Del Rey bid a liberating goodbye to others expectations, their voices combining in an evocation of the spirit of womanhood (although Marshalls confession "The doctor said I was not my past/He said I was finally free" is utterly, poignantly personal). Similarly, she hones Rihannas "Stay" -- already an unusually naked and free-flowing pop ballad -- to its most soul-baring parts, and its spine-tingling beauty is another testament to the strength it takes to be so vulnerable. As tender as it is uncompromising, Wanderer is exactly the album Marshall needed to make at this point in her career and life. Its some of her most essential music, in both senses of the word.
bon_voyage Album: 42 of 75
Artist:  Melody’s Echo Chamber
Title:  Bon Voyage
Released:  2018-06-15
Tracks:  7
Duration:  33:22
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Cross My Heart  (06:55)
2   Breathe In, Breathe Out  (02:50)
3   Desert Horse  (05:15)
4   Var har du vart?  (01:28)
5   Quand les larmes d’un ange font danser la neige  (07:07)
6   Visions of Someone Special, on a Wall of Reflections  (05:01)
7   Shirim  (04:46)
record Album: 43 of 75
Artist:  Tracey Thorn
Title:  Record
Released:  2018-03-02
Tracks:  9
Duration:  35:48
Info:  Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   Queen  (04:17)
2   Air  (03:03)
3   Guitar  (02:33)
4   Smoke  (04:10)
5   Sister  (08:32)
6   Go  (04:01)
7   Babies  (02:33)
8   Face  (03:40)
9   Dancefloor  (02:56)
deafman_glance Album: 44 of 75
Artist:  Ryley Walker
Title:  Deafman Glance
Released:  2018-05-18
Tracks:  9
Duration:  41:33
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   In Castle Dome  (05:35)
2   22 Days  (05:59)
3   Accommodations  (03:04)
4   Can’t Ask Why  (05:41)
5   Opposite Middle  (03:35)
6   Telluride Speed  (06:27)
7   Expired  (05:41)
8   Rocks on Rainbow  (01:45)
9   Spoil With the Rest  (03:42)
hunter Album: 45 of 75
Artist:  Anna Calvi
Title:  Hunter
Released:  2018-08-19
Tracks:  10
Duration:  43:45
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   As a Man  (03:46)
2   Hunter  (04:11)
3   Don’t Beat the Girl Out of My Boy  (04:03)
4   Indies or Paradise  (04:41)
5   Swimming Pool  (04:54)
6   Alpha  (03:41)
7   Chain  (04:47)
8   Wish  (05:16)
9   Away  (04:14)
10  Eden  (04:08)
Hunter : Allmusic album Review : Anna Calvi took a five-year break after releasing 2013s One Breath, but the intervening time didnt diminish the grand sound shes been cultivating since her debut. From the title tracks breathy opening to the soaring melody of "Away," her gift for elucidating the drama of a bygone era is intact and just as effective. If anything, the lustily provocative nature of her artistry reaches its dizzy apex on Hunter. She takes the drama of 80s power ballads and extracts its most gothic textures, no doubt aided by Nicolas Launays (Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, Yeah Yeah Yeahs) expansive production, which recalls the airiness he gave the Bad Seeds Push the Sky Away. A great deal of the record explores the fluidity of gender by playing with many of the common tropes associated with masculinity, from "Alpha" to "Hunter." The former tracks arch, elongated riffs, and the predatory prowl of "Indies or Paradise," include some of Calvis most warped and consummate shredding to date, further dispelling another macho myth -- that only boys can play guitar. Nevertheless, these virile expressions never come at the expense of Calvis femininity, as the lush swirl of "Swimming Pool" attests. Like gender, the record also examines sexuality. Calvi has flirted with a queer point of view before, as on "Ill Be Your Man" from her 2011 debut. But Hunter is the record which fundamentally lives and breathes queerness, a record where on "Chains" she suggests, "Ill be the boy, you be the girl/Ill be the girl you be the boy." Unlike earlier efforts, this feels less like theater for theaters sake, and ultimately, unbridled and infinitely real. On "Wish," for instance, shes never sounded so liberated, and that lack of constraint bleeds into her guitar playing, hinting at a newfound joy amid the curious majesty of her music. Hunter is the record where, more than any other, Calvis talents have fully crystallized. The true character of her music has been unleashed and will likely see all those PJ Harvey comparisons finally fade, eclipsed by the radiance of this tough yet open-hearted work.
from_when_i_wake_the_want_is Album: 46 of 75
Artist:  Kathryn Joseph
Title:  From When I Wake the Want Is
Released:  2018-08-10
Tracks:  12
Duration:  44:55
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   IIII  (05:02)
2   From When I Wake the Want Is  (04:11)
3   And You Survived  (01:54)
4   Tell My Lover  (05:10)
5   And It Will Lick You Clean  (03:19)
6   There Is No God But You  (02:57)
7   Safe  (03:21)
8   We Have Been Loved By Our Mothers  (03:07)
9   Mouths Full of Blood  (03:30)
10  Mountain  (04:17)
11  Weight  (04:23)
12  ^^  (03:40)
aviary Album: 47 of 75
Artist:  Julia Holter
Title:  Aviary
Released:  2018-10-26
Tracks:  15
Duration:  1:29:49
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   Turn the Light On  (04:16)
2   Whether  (02:58)
3   Chaitius  (08:10)
4   Voce Simul  (06:34)
5   Every Day Is an Emergency  (07:45)
6   Another Dream  (06:07)
7   I Shall Love 2  (05:19)
1   Underneath the Moon  (06:49)
2   Colligere  (06:11)
3   In Gardens’ Muteness  (06:36)
4   I Would Rather See  (04:51)
5   Les Jeux to You  (06:18)
6   Words I Heard  (06:39)
7   I Shall Love 1  (05:09)
8   Why Sad Song  (06:07)
Aviary : Allmusic album Review : During the second half of the 2010s, much of Julia Holters music revolved around different kinds of confinement that ranged from her soundtrack work to the verse-chorus-verse forms of Have You in My Wilderness. Aviary feels like the natural and opposite reaction to all this structure; at a generous 90 minutes long, it gives her plenty of room to express herself as a composer, songwriter, experimental artist, and indie musician. Inspired in part by a quote from Lebanese-American writer Etel Adnan ("I found myself in an aviary full of shrieking birds"), Holters sixth album reflects and responds to the feeling of sensory overload that dominated the late 2010s. The albums length feels like a rebuke of attention spans shortened by constant screen time, and demands listeners engage at a slower, more receptive pace. Fortunately, Aviary is some of Holters most dazzling, mercurial music, and the liberation she felt making it is audible at every turn. She begins the album with some of its boldest tracks, which use barely controlled chaos as skillfully as she employs careful arrangements. "Turn the Light On" throws open Aviarys doors with a joyful riot of strings, brass, and surprisingly powerful vocals. "Whether" briefly shapes this cacophony into something approaching pop, then Holter tosses listeners another curveball with "Chaitius," a fragmented eight-minute suite that plays like a microcosm of her music at its most challenging and beguiling. Similarly, "Everyday Is an Emergency" -- named after another phrase that guided Aviarys creation -- juxtaposes shrill free jazz that conveys the portable, pocket-sized dread of constant news alerts with caressing pianos that suggest respite is possible, if temporary. Some of the albums most beautiful moments occur when she goes deeper into these moments of serenity. The luminous "Another Dream" and "I Shall Love 2" (the latter of which frames love as an action and borrows from a troubadour song and Alice Coltrane) are all the sweeter compared to Aviarys more frantic tracks. Holters ability to combine wide-ranging inspirations into strikingly original music remains remarkable. "Underneath the Moon"s rustling beats sound ancient and futuristic at the same time, while "I Shall Love 1"s chanted vocals reveal a medieval influence that sounds both authentic and modern. While Aviarys second half gradually settles into contemplative ballads like "Colligere" and attains a wintry stillness on "I Would Rather See," Holter still delights in surprises such as "Les Jeux to You," a brittle meditation on the bubonic plague that she interrupts with a choppy, exuberant outburst. On Aviary, Holter answers the chaos of 21st century life by following her bliss; the result is a constellation of moments that celebrate the fullness of her music and, as always, make for fascinating listening.
the_lookout Album: 48 of 75
Artist:  Laura Veirs
Title:  The Lookout
Released:  2018-04-13
Tracks:  12
Duration:  38:35
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Margaret Sands  (02:57)
2   Everybody Needs You  (02:55)
3   Seven Falls  (04:04)
4   Mountains of the Moon  (04:16)
5   Watch Fire  (02:36)
6   Heavy Petals  (02:39)
7   The Lookout  (02:04)
8   The Meadow  (02:42)
9   The Canyon  (03:42)
10  Lightning Rod  (03:20)
11  When It Grows Darkest  (04:31)
12  Zozobra  (02:45)
hundreds_of_days Album: 49 of 75
Artist:  Mary Lattimore
Title:  Hundreds of Days
Released:  2018-05-18
Tracks:  7
Duration:  48:01
Info:  Review Musicbrainz
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1   It Feels Like Floating  (11:31)
2   Never Saw Him Again  (07:30)
3   Hello From the Edge of the Earth  (03:34)
4   Baltic Birch  (09:32)
5   Their Faces Streaked With Light and Filled With Pity  (02:43)
6   On the Day You Saw the Dead Whale  (09:26)
7   Wind Carries Seed  (03:43)
body Album: 50 of 75
Artist:  The Necks
Title:  Body
Released:  2018-08-14
Tracks:  1
Duration:  56:40
Info:  Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   Body  (56:40)
you_never_were_much_of_a_dancer Album: 51 of 75
Artist:  Gwenifer Raymond
Title:  You Never Were Much of a Dancer
Released:  2018-06-29
Tracks:  13
Duration:  39:24
Info:  Review Musicbrainz
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1   Off to See the Hangman, Part I  (00:57)
2   Sometimes There’s Blood  (04:48)
3   Idumea  (02:42)
4   Off to See the Hangman, Part II  (04:45)
5   Face Down Strut  (01:35)
6   Laika’s Song  (01:48)
7   Oh, Command Me Lord!  (02:13)
8   Sweep It Up  (02:04)
9   Requiem for John Fahey  (03:04)
10  Dance of the Everlasting Faint  (04:26)
11  Bleeding Finger Blues  (01:57)
12  Sack ’em Up, Part I / Sack ’em Up, Part II  (05:41)
13  It Was All Sackcloth and Ashes  (03:24)
last_man_standing Album: 52 of 75
Artist:  Willie Nelson
Title:  Last Man Standing
Released:  2018-04-27
Tracks:  11
Duration:  33:39
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   Last Man Standing  (03:00)
2   Don’t Tell Noah  (02:28)
3   Bad Breath  (03:03)
4   Me and You  (02:49)
5   Something You Get Through  (03:53)
6   Ready to Roar  (02:35)
7   Heaven Is Closed  (03:16)
8   I Ain’t Got Nothin’  (03:00)
9   She Made My Day  (02:43)
10  I’ll Try to Do Better Next Time  (02:59)
11  Very Far to Crawl  (03:48)
Last Man Standing : Allmusic album Review : Willie Nelson started singing about the end of the line a while back but now that hes in his mid-eighties, hes so accustomed to having death lurking around the corner that he can kid about it. Thats precisely what he does throughout Last Man Standing, an album that serves as a jocular counterpart to its predecessor, Gods Problem Child. Nelson didnt avoid humor on that record, but the vibe seemed haunted by a looming sense that the clock is ticking away. Willie shakes off this spookiness on Last Man Standing, whose title track finds him singing that "its getting hard to watch my pals check out" to a jaunty rhythm. Ultimately, he decides he wants to be the last man standing, a sentiment thats reiterated a few tracks later, when Willie looks into the mirror and determines its "better to have bad breath than no breath at all." Nelson isnt seizing the day so much as shrugging off worries, and decides just to have a good time. Despite being riddled with songs about death and aging, Last Man Standing is ridiculously fun, thanks not just to Nelsons jocularity -- its not just gallows humor, either; the swinging honky tonk of "She Made My Day" is filled with sly one-liners -- but to the nimbleness of his band. Its no secret that his bandmembers are pros, but its still a pleasure to hear them play -- theyre as compelling sliding into the shimmering jazz overtones of "Something You Get Through" as they are kicking out the blues of "I Aint Got Nothin" -- and they give Nelson plenty of cover for working with his weathered voice. No longer able to croon as he once did, Nelson opts for playing around with the rhythms of his delivery, a move that makes him seem limber, adding a sense of vitality to Last Man Standing. Willie realizes hes not going to be here forever but hes made up his mind to make the most of his time here, and thats why Last Man Standing feels richer than so many self-conscious meditations on mortality.
american_utopia Album: 53 of 75
Artist:  David Byrne
Title:  American Utopia
Released:  2018-03-09
Tracks:  10
Duration:  37:22
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   I Dance Like This  (03:33)
2   Gasoline and Dirty Sheets  (03:19)
3   Every Day Is a Miracle  (04:46)
4   Dog’s Mind  (02:29)
5   This Is That  (04:31)
6   It’s Not Dark Up Here  (04:10)
7   Bullet  (03:09)
8   Doing the Right Thing  (03:38)
9   Everybody’s Coming to My House  (03:29)
10  Here  (04:13)
American Utopia : Allmusic album Review : "Is this meant ironically? Is it a joke? Do I mean this seriously? In what way?" David Byrne seems to be simultaneously inviting and acknowledging some likely reactions to his 2018 album, American Utopia, in his own liner notes. At a time when America has been thrown into a state of chaos -- something Byrne witnessed and creatively reacted to as an artist during the Reagan era -- here he imagines what appears to be an alternate version of the United States and the people who live in it. (Animals, too -- a variety of critters pop up in "Every Day Is a Miracle," and "Dogs Mind" imagines how our canine friends view the world.) Not everything in Byrnes Bizarro World America is a good time, especially on "Gasoline and Dirty Sheets" and "This Is That." But much of this album portrays folks who are both dazzled and overwhelmed by the abundant possibilities presented in "Its Not Dark Up Here," "Everybodys Coming to My House," and "I Dance Like This." American Utopia began as a series of rhythm tracks created by Brian Eno, which Byrne then fashioned into songs, with a variety of other collaborators reshaping the results, including co-producers Rodaidh McDonald and Patrick Dillett and musicians Daniel Lopatin, Thomas Bartlett, and Joey Waronker. The final product is a sonic crazy quilt thats rich and evocative, by turns ominous and seductive, and the stylistic shape-shifting that dominates these tracks suits the many moods of Byrnes characters very well indeed. In concept, American Utopia bears faint resemblance to the cheerfully odd average Americans who populated Talking Heads 1986 album True Stories (and Byrnes accompanying feature film), but this albums wit is more pointed, the tone is cooler and less secure, and the cumulative effect less joyous and a bit more puzzled about what awaits us with the next dawn. American Utopia is an album of beautiful and witty surfaces stretched over a sea of troubled waters, and if Byrne is rarely inclined to give direct answers to the questions he asks, its obvious this isnt a joke, its an ambitious work from an important American artist.
i_can_feel_you_creep_into_my_private_life Album: 54 of 75
Artist:  tUnE-yArDs
Title:  I can feel you creep into my private life
Released:  2018-01-19
Tracks:  12
Duration:  44:18
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   Heart Attack  (03:43)
2   Coast to Coast  (03:55)
3   ABC 123  (03:34)
4   Now as Then  (03:52)
5   Honesty  (03:38)
6   Colonizer  (03:54)
7   Look at Your Hands  (03:46)
8   Home  (04:18)
9   Hammer  (03:15)
10  Who Are You  (03:17)
11  Private Life  (03:20)
12  Free  (03:41)
I can feel you creep into my private life : Allmusic album Review : Tune-Yards made a timely return with i can feel you creep into my private life, a vibrant album that explores the political and cultural tumult of the late 2010s with anthemic heft and individualistic perspectives. Merrill Garbus creative process included DJing, taking workshops on race, and doing lots of writing, all of which can be felt in the albums poppier sound, its leaner, more direct confrontations and confessions, and the skill with which she and Nate Brenner examine race, politics, and feminism. Theyre as confident on big-picture songs like "Coast to Coast" and "ABC 123" which respectively envision a sinking New York and a burning California, as they are on "Look at Your Hands," a bouncy expression of connection and responsibility, and "Colonizer," where Garbus sings about using her "white womans voice" over a gnawing beat that suggests a colony of termites or a multiplying virus. While i can feel you creep into my private life is less overtly whimsical than Tune-Yards previous albums, Garbus and Brenner still manage to have fun in ways that dont detract from its urgency. With its junkyard beats and tumbling layers of vocals, "Private Life" is equally joyous and searching -- in other words, quintessential Tune-Yards. Likewise, "Hammer" feels like the spiritual heir to "Water Fountain" in the way it juxtaposes oppression with irresistible rhythms and harmonies. Brenner and Garbus balance dynamic songs like these and the bold opening track "Heart Attack" with reflective moments such as "Home" and the dubby "Who Are You," both of which ensure theres as much questioning as proclaiming on the album. Though many more artists became politically outspoken in the years following W H O K I L L and Nikki Nack, Tune-Yards passionate commentary and innovative sounds are just as potent as ever, and i can feel you creep into my private life might just be their most cohesive set of songs yet.
cosmic_wink Album: 55 of 75
Artist:  Jess Williamson
Title:  Cosmic Wink
Released:  2018-05-11
Tracks:  9
Duration:  37:20
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   I See the White  (03:24)
2   Awakening Baby  (02:40)
3   White Bird  (03:47)
4   Wild Rain  (04:21)
5   Thunder Song  (03:35)
6   Mama Proud  (05:56)
7   Dream State  (04:28)
8   Forever  (04:50)
9   Love on the Piano  (04:15)
meet_me_at_the_river Album: 56 of 75
Artist:  Dawn Landes
Title:  Meet Me at the River
Released:  2018-08-10
Tracks:  12
Duration:  36:43
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Meet Me at the River  (03:36)
2   Traveling  (03:15)
3   Why They Name Whiskey After Men  (03:27)
4   Old Memories  (03:20)
5   Wind and Rain  (03:26)
6   What Will I Do  (02:48)
7   Southern Girl  (02:22)
8   How to Say “I Love You”  (02:28)
9   Keep On Moving  (03:08)
10  My Church  (03:05)
11  What Is the Color of the Soul of Man  (02:36)
12  I Don’t Dance  (03:08)
genericana Album: 57 of 75
Artist:  Elephant Micah
Title:  Genericana
Released:  2018-08-13
Tracks:  6
Duration:  32:07
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Surf A  (06:22)
2   Fire A  (05:24)
3   Life A  (01:27)
4   Life B  (07:28)
5   Fire B  (06:35)
6   Surf B  (04:51)
rifles_rosary_beads Album: 58 of 75
Artist:  Mary Gauthier
Title:  Rifles & Rosary Beads
Released:  2018-01-26
Tracks:  11
Duration:  44:36
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Soldiering On  (05:32)
2   Got Your Six  (02:38)
3   The War After the War  (03:44)
4   Still on the Ride  (05:03)
5   Bullet Holes in the Sky  (04:46)
6   Brothers  (02:50)
7   Rifles and Rosary Beads  (03:37)
8   Morphine 1-2  (04:04)
9   Its Her Love  (04:18)
10  Iraq  (04:18)
11  Stronger Together  (03:41)
follow_them_true Album: 59 of 75
Artist:  Stick in the Wheel
Title:  Follow Them True
Released:  2018-01-26
Tracks:  13
Duration:  36:27
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Over Again  (02:24)
2   Weaving Song  (01:15)
3   Witch Bottle  (02:48)
4   White Copper Alley  (01:47)
5   Follow Them True  (02:47)
6   100,000 Years  (02:41)
7   Abbots Bromley Horn Dance  (03:33)
8   Roving Blade  (04:04)
9   Unquiet Grave  (02:28)
10  Blind Beggar of Bethnal Green  (03:56)
11  Poor Old Horse  (02:28)
12  Red Carnation  (02:44)
13  As I Roved Out  (03:32)
in_a_poem_unlimited Album: 60 of 75
Artist:  U.S. Girls
Title:  In a Poem Unlimited
Released:  2018-02-16
Tracks:  11
Duration:  37:45
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Velvet 4 Sale  (03:44)
2   Rage of Plastics  (04:27)
3   M.A.H.  (02:54)
4   Why Do I Lose My Voice When I Have Something to Say?  (00:25)
5   Rosebud  (03:09)
6   Incidental Boogie  (03:23)
7   L‐Over  (04:05)
8   Pearly Gates  (04:02)
9   Poem  (03:30)
10  Traviata  (00:12)
11  Time  (07:48)
landfall Album: 61 of 75
Artist:  Laurie Anderson & Kronos Quartet
Title:  Landfall
Released:  2018-02-16
Tracks:  30
Duration:  1:09:34
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   CNN Predicts a Monster Storm  (03:19)
2   Wind Whistles Through the Dark City  (01:58)
3   The Water Rises  (02:43)
4   Our Street Is a Black River  (01:20)
5   Galaxies  (01:06)
6   Darkness Falls  (01:55)
7   Dreams  (04:01)
8   Dreams Translated  (00:50)
9   The Dark Side  (01:10)
10  Built You a Mountain  (02:16)
11  The Electricity Goes out and We Move to a Hotel  (03:03)
12  We Learn to Speak Yet Another Language  (03:00)
13  Dawn of the World  (02:22)
14  The Wind Lifted the Boats and Left Them on the Highway  (02:40)
15  It Twisted the Street Signs  (01:13)
16  Then It Receded  (00:52)
17  The Nineteen Stars of Heaven  (02:43)
18  Nothing Left but Their Names  (09:38)
19  All the Extinct Animals  (02:50)
20  Galaxies II  (00:53)
21  Never What You Think It Will Be  (01:11)
22  Thunder Continues in the Aftermath  (01:54)
23  We Blame Each Other for Losing the Way  (00:41)
24  Another Long Evening  (01:56)
25  Riding Bicycles Through the Muddy Streets  (02:36)
26  Helicopters Hang Over Downtown  (02:15)
27  We Head Out  (01:49)
28  Everything Is Floating  (01:59)
29  Gongs and Bells Sing  (02:32)
30  Old Motors and Helicopters  (02:49)
remain_in_light Album: 62 of 75
Artist:  Angélique Kidjo
Title:  Remain in Light
Released:  2018-06-08
Tracks:  8
Duration:  36:22
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Born Under Punches  (03:49)
2   Crosseyed and Painless  (05:28)
3   The Great Curve  (04:08)
4   Once in a Lifetime  (05:48)
5   Houses in Motion  (04:33)
6   Seen and Not Seen  (03:04)
7   Listening Wind  (06:01)
8   The Overload  (03:28)
lifted Album: 63 of 75
Artist:  Israel Nash
Title:  Lifted
Released:  2018-07-27
Tracks:  12
Duration:  45:23
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Rolling on (Intro)  (01:05)
2   Rolling On  (04:33)
3   Looking Glass  (05:11)
4   Lucky Ones  (03:55)
5   Sweet Springs (Intro)  (00:23)
6   Sweet Springs  (03:52)
7   SpiritFalls  (04:25)
8   Northwest Stars (Out of Tacoma)  (04:17)
9   Hillsides  (04:53)
10  The Widow  (04:16)
11  Strong Was the Night  (04:53)
12  Golden Fleeces  (03:33)
the_blue_hour Album: 64 of 75
Artist:  Suede
Title:  The Blue Hour
Released:  2018-09-21
Tracks:  14
Duration:  51:36
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Lyrics Review Review2 Review3 Review4 Review5 Review6 Review7 Musicbrainz
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1   As One  (04:10)
2   Wastelands  (05:31)
3   Mistress  (03:23)
4   Beyond the Outskirts  (04:06)
5   Chalk Circles  (02:04)
6   Cold Hands  (03:16)
7   Life Is Golden  (03:57)
8   Roadkill  (02:06)
9   Tides  (04:08)
10  Don’t Be Afraid If Nobody Loves You  (04:24)
11  Dead Bird  (00:26)
12  All the Wild Places  (03:15)
13  The Invisibles  (04:09)
14  Flytipping  (06:41)
The Blue Hour : Allmusic album Review : Having established that their 21st century reunion was not a passing thing, Suede decided to stretch themselves with The Blue Hour, the third record theyve made since reuniting in 2013. Unlike that years Bloodsports or its 2016 sequel Night Thoughts, The Blue Hour isnt produced by Ed Buller, who helmed their three big records of the 1990s (Suede, Dog Man Star, Coming Up), its the work of Alan Moulder, the veteran producer whose fingerprints were all over alternative rock of the 90s that had little to do with Brit-pop. Truth be told, Suede always stood slightly apart from the Brit-pop pack, sounding a little too louche and glamorous to be part of it, but this decadent romanticism also serves them well in middle age, as it offers avenues for exploration and reflection -- avenues that the band seize here. The Blue Hour isnt as streamlined and assured as Night Thoughts, which wound up as an elegant refinement of the ideas offered on Dog Man Star, yet thats its charm. Suede decide to ratchet up the melodrama on The Blue Hour and seize upon any opportunity to take a detour, dressing the album with layers of strings, choirs, electronic voice, and poetic digressions. That some of these accouterments wind up detracting from the stylish foreboding thats the records primary color seems to be the point: Suede realize theyve mastered such sustained moodiness, so theyre taking opportunities to break the spell, or perhaps stir up dreams or nightmares. If the results are occasionally patchwork, that only adds to the albums appeal and it also suits Suede, who always found majesty within secondhand threads and hand-me-downs. Twenty-five years after their debut, they still retain that power, while finding ways to surprise within their firmly defined style.
negro_swan Album: 65 of 75
Artist:  Blood Orange
Title:  Negro Swan
Released:  2018-08-24
Tracks:  16
Duration:  49:27
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Lyrics Review Review2 Review3 Musicbrainz
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1   Orlando  (03:02)
2   Saint  (03:12)
3   Take Your Time  (02:51)
4   Hope  (03:59)
5   Jewelry  (04:32)
6   Family  (00:41)
7   Charcoal Baby  (04:02)
8   Vulture Baby  (01:14)
9   Chewing Gum  (04:23)
10  Holy Will  (04:22)
11  Dagenham Dream  (02:45)
12  Nappy Wonder  (02:38)
13  Runnin’  (03:55)
14  Out of Your League  (02:20)
15  Minetta Creek  (01:58)
16  Smoke  (03:33)
Negro Swan : Allmusic album Review : The fourth Blood Orange album begins with a temperate rolling groove suited perfectly for Dev Hynes gentle falsetto. Just as the song starts to resemble something akin to Stevie Wonders "Power Flower" as an imagined Smokey Robinson collaboration, its refrain of "First kiss was the floor," delivered with deceptively wistful style, tugs the attentive listener into Hynes marginalized and antagonized existence as a black male with characteristics perceived as non-masculine. A more severe attack is referenced later in "Dagenham Dream." The songs gauzy and isolated qualities are disrupted with sounds of passing sirens as Hynes recalls being hospitalized, concealing himself in response, and achieving blissful escape on his skateboard. These are the most graphic moments on Negro Swan, an album that otherwise is less autobiographical, with feelings of instability, comfort, optimism, self-fulfillment, and pride articulated from track to track. Negro Swan sonically is as fluid as it is fragmented, synthesizing and bounding between bedsit post-punk, desolate dream pop, chillwave-coated quiet storm, and low-profile hip-hop soul. Via a Clark Sisters interpolation featuring piercing praise from Ian Isiah, it even dips into gospel (if rendered with Twinkies organ replaced with some decidedly less fervent synthesizer). Though tracks change direction and are stylistically variable -- even the one-minute interlude "Vulture Baby" evokes tranquil Blackbyrds and ghostly Pink Floyd -- the sequencing is well-paced, jarring only when the moody Project Pat and A$AP Rocky collaboration "Chewing Gum" purposefully grinds to a halt to make way for the church scene. Transitions elsewhere are eased by portions of a discussion with author and trans advocate Janet Mock, who provides words of inspiration and hope. This qualifies as Hynes most inward work, but its a product of considerable interaction, whether the singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist is handing off ideas to Diddy on the Connected-era Foreign Exchange-like "Hope," trading primary instruments with the Internets Steve Lacy on the swirling "Out of Your League," or leaving enough room on each track for up to to four additional voices, including Kelsey Lu, Amandla Stenberg, and Adam Bainbridge. The most touching matchup occurs on "Runnin." Georgia Anne Muldrows support reaches beyond creative to emotional, alleviating Hynes anxiety and loneliness with lines like "You and your soul are never not one" and "Just hold onto your mighty way of bein." As Muldrow finishes with a chuckle, its not hard to picture Hynes falling into her arms.
the_height_of_the_reeds Album: 66 of 75
Artist:  Arve Henriksen / Eivind Aarset / Jan Bang / Jez riley French
Title:  The Height of the Reeds
Released:  2018-08-31
Tracks:  9
Duration:  42:29
Info:  Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   Come April  (01:51)
2   Reefs and Roots  (08:58)
3   The Swans Bend Their Necks Backward to See God  (06:06)
4   Height of the Reeds in the Wetlands  (04:23)
5   Is There a Limit for the Internal?  (06:53)
6   Nymphs and Eurasian Horses  (02:33)
7   Waders  (04:02)
8   The Wind in the Willows  (02:30)
9   Pink Cherry Trees  (05:09)
cest_la_vie Album: 67 of 75
Artist:  Phosphorescent
Title:  C’est La Vie
Released:  2018-10-05
Tracks:  9
Duration:  46:04
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Black Moon / Silver Waves  (01:16)
2   C’est La Vie No.2  (03:25)
3   New Birth in New England  (04:59)
4   There From Here  (05:20)
5   Around the Horn  (08:11)
6   Christmas Down Under  (06:16)
7   My Beautiful Boy  (05:46)
8   These Rocks  (04:26)
9   Black Waves / Silver Moon  (06:21)
the_hex Album: 68 of 75
Artist:  Richard Swift
Title:  The Hex
Released:  2018-09-21
Tracks:  11
Duration:  37:21
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   The Hex  (02:25)
2   Broken Finger Blues  (04:20)
3   Selfishmath  (03:16)
4   Dirty Jim  (03:49)
5   Babylon  (03:07)
6   Wendy  (03:11)
7   Sister Song  (02:23)
8   Nancy  (03:48)
9   Hzlwd  (04:32)
10  Kensington!  (03:50)
11  Sept20  (02:35)
the_future_and_the_past Album: 69 of 75
Artist:  Natalie Prass
Title:  The Future and the Past
Released:  2018-06-01
Tracks:  12
Duration:  45:29
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Oh My  (03:15)
2   Short Court Style  (03:43)
3   Interlude: Your Fire  (00:32)
4   The Fire  (03:27)
5   Hot for the Mountain  (04:31)
6   Lost  (03:10)
7   Sisters  (04:36)
8   Never Too Late  (03:49)
9   Ship Go Down  (06:03)
10  Nothing to Say  (04:26)
11  Far From You  (03:34)
12  Ain’t Nobody  (04:20)
lachesis_clotho_atropos Album: 70 of 75
Artist:  Harmony Rockets & Peter Walker
Title:  Lachesis / Clotho / Atropos
Released:  2018-09-14
Tracks:  3
Duration:  33:52
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Lachesis  (17:08)
2   Clotho  (09:03)
3   Atropos  (07:40)
singularity Album: 71 of 75
Artist:  Jon Hopkins
Title:  Singularity
Released:  2018-05-04
Tracks:  9
Duration:  1:02:10
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Review Review2 Musicbrainz
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1   Singularity  (06:29)
2   Emerald Rush  (05:36)
3   Neon Pattern Drum  (06:07)
4   Everything Connected  (10:30)
5   Feel First Life  (05:33)
6   C O S M  (07:08)
7   Echo Dissolve  (03:21)
8   Luminous Beings  (11:51)
9   Recovery  (05:35)
Singularity : Allmusic album Review : Singularity is the proper follow-up to Jon Hopkins 2013 breakthrough Immunity, a spellbinding album of highly intricate, glitchy techno which nevertheless felt organic, and even classical at times. Like that album, Singularity is filled with frayed feedback, skillfully crafted beats, and gentle piano melodies, as well as the occasional breathy vocals. This time out, there seems to be an extra shot of adrenaline added, and the album seems to reflect a deeper spiritual quest, both inwards and outwards. Hopkins still writes lengthy tracks which steadily build, but these are more suspenseful, and theres a greater impact when a heavier beat drops or a more transcendent synth tone emerges during the second half of cuts like "Singularity" and "Neon Pattern Drum." First single "Emerald Rush" progresses from a heartbeat-like pulse, lightly swirling arpeggios, and stark piano notes to a slow, jagged thump of a beat, which feels jarring when it finally kicks in. As additional sounds pour in, the intensity increases, making the track feel like its speeding up a bit, even though it isnt. Ten-minute epic "Everything Connected" is easily one of Hopkins most "progressive" tracks yet, with an ambient/shoegaze shimmer floating over its shaky rhythm, which seems like the only thing preventing the track from ascending to the heavens. Hopkins expands on this celestial state with the beatless "Feel First Life," which spotlights the London Voices choir. "Luminous Beings," the albums lengthiest track, begins with anxious static and suspicious murmurings, but soon reaches clarity, with a simple, resonating triplet melody leading toward peace of mind for much of the piece. The sparse, pretty piano comedown "Recovery" is an entirely fitting conclusion to such a deeply introspective journey. As striking as Immunity was, Singularity feels more developed, and its ultimately a tough call as to which album is more exciting.
shelter Album: 72 of 75
Artist:  Olivia Chaney
Title:  Shelter
Released:  2018-06-15
Tracks:  10
Duration:  44:18
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   Shelter  (04:16)
2   Dragonfly  (04:35)
3   Arches  (06:10)
4   IOU  (04:05)
5   A Tree Grows in Brooklyn  (04:33)
6   Colin and Clem  (05:01)
7   O Solitude  (04:05)
8   Long Time Gone  (03:17)
9   Roman Holiday  (04:13)
10  House on a Hill  (04:03)
Shelter : Allmusic album Review : The sophomore long-player from the English folk singer and multi-instrumentalist, Shelter arrives just one year after the electrifying Queen of Hearts, Olivia Chaneys 2017 collaboration with the Decemberists under the Offa Rex moniker. The latter outing, an homage to late-60s and early-70s British-folk-rock, bristled with intent, skillfully evoking the eclecticism of bands like Pentangle, Fairport Convention, and Steeleye Span -- Chaneys performance alone was worth the price of admission. Like her 2015 debut, Longest River, Shelter is a more uncomplicated affair, with less attention paid to traditional folk songs (there are two, and both are delightful, as is a compelling rework of the Tex Ritter-penned "Long Time Gone") and a tighter focus on slow-burn originals that owe more to Blue-era Joni Mitchell and early Kate Bush than they do Maddy Prior and Jacqui McShee -- Sandy Denny remains both a sonic and lyrical linchpin. Chaneys songs eschew linear trad-folk narratives in favor of a more impressionistic and poetic approach, but there is an overarching current that runs through Shelters ten cozy cuts. Composed in the rustic 18th century cottage in the North Yorkshire moors that has served as her family retreat over the years, the notion of solitude -- and its myriad benefits/drawbacks -- is at the heart of the aptly named collection. That sense of isolation is mirrored by the sparse instrumentation. When Chaney isnt going it alone, shes joined by longtime collaborator Jordan Hunt, and the austere production work by Thomas Bartlett (aka Doveman), who also plays on the album, only adds to the overall sense of intimacy. Still, even at her most unguarded, Chaneys robust voice commands the room, deftly weaving between the intersecting lanes of vulnerability and raw power with remarkable poise, especially on standout cuts like "Dragonfly," "Roman Holiday," and "A Tree Grows in Brooklyn," the latter of which uses the "cockles and mussels alive, alive oh" refrain from the traditional Irish ballad "Molly Malone" to devastating effect.
golden_hour Album: 73 of 75
Artist:  Kacey Musgraves
Title:  Golden Hour
Released:  2018-03-30
Tracks:  13
Duration:  45:48
Info:  Discogs Musicbrainz
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1   Slow Burn  (04:06)
2   Lonely Weekend  (03:46)
3   Butterflies  (03:39)
4   Oh, What a World  (04:01)
5   Mother  (01:18)
6   Love Is a Wild Thing  (04:16)
7   Space Cowboy  (03:36)
8   Happy & Sad  (04:03)
9   Velvet Elvis  (02:34)
10  Wonder Woman  (04:00)
11  High Horse  (03:33)
12  Golden Hour  (03:18)
13  Rainbow  (03:34)
7 Album: 74 of 75
Artist:  Beach House
Title:  7
Released:  2018-05-11
Tracks:  11
Duration:  47:09
Info:  Allmusic Discogs Lyrics Lyrics2 Musicbrainz
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1   Dark Spring  (03:24)
2   Pay No Mind  (03:24)
3   Lemon Glow  (04:04)
4   L’Inconnue  (04:24)
5   Drunk in LA  (03:59)
6   Dive  (04:25)
7   Black Car  (04:11)
8   Lose Your Smile  (04:09)
9   Woo  (04:14)
10  Girl of the Year  (03:51)
11  Last Ride  (06:59)
7 : Allmusic album Review : While Beach Houses sound has always focused on hypnotic melodies and Victoria Legrands rich vocals -- and likely always will -- theyve found different ways to explore this potent combination on each album. Legrand and Alex Scally delivered some of their most dramatic experiments on 2015s Depression Cherry and Thank Your Lucky Stars, which presented a surprising amount of sides to their music even as they stripped it down to the basics. If possible, theyre even more committed to change on their aptly named seventh album. To make 7, Beach House opted to work with Sonic Boom instead of longtime producer Chris Coady; brought their live drummer James Barone into the studio; and recorded songs as soon as they were done writing them instead of waiting to record all of them at once. This creative liberation resonates on every track, whether Scally and Legrand build up the instrumentation or pare it back, touch on their familiar sounds or invent new ones. 7s sequencing spotlights just how wide its range is, juxtaposing songs that sound wildly different, but equally like Beach House. The galactic whoosh of "Dark Spring" -- a key example of Booms influence -- sounds all the more vast next to "Pay No Mind," the bands warmest, most down-to-earth love song yet. Similarly, "LInconnue"s blissful call-and-response contrasts nicely with the edgy "Drunk in LA," where the beats and synths evoke rain-slicked streets and city lights. Then there are the songs that feel completely new: with its warping synths and enigmatic vibe, "Lemon Glow" gives the Beach House mystique a sci-fi update, while the sleek "Black Car" incorporates hints of dance and R&B without sounding like the duo is chasing trends. "Dive" is another standout, shifting from rainy-day contemplation to speeding down the road with the windows down in a way thats seamless and exhilarating. Elsewhere, Legrand uses 7s eclectic sounds as an opportunity to experiment with different lyrical perspectives that add depth to the albums dreamy surfaces, as on "Girl of the Year," where its cavernous sweetness echoes its tale of a young woman famous for self-destruction. Throughout 7, Beach House feel more concerned with capturing moments fully rather than conforming to notions of what a cohesive album is. That these songs sound like they came from different albums is ultimately more refreshing than disorienting, and the excitement that courses through each track is palpable. Scally and Legrand could have only made 7 at this point in their career -- not only do they have the skill to change things up, but the wisdom to know how and when to do so.
fenfo Album: 75 of 75
Artist:  Fatoumata Diawara
Title:  Fenfo
Released:  2018-05-25
Tracks:  11
Duration:  41:56
Info:  Musicbrainz
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1   Nterini  (03:43)
2   Kokoro  (03:36)
3   Ou YAn Ye  (04:12)
4   Kanou Dan Yen  (03:34)
5   Fenfo  (04:28)
6   Negue Negue  (03:28)
7   Mama  (04:20)
8   Takamba  (04:41)
9   Bonya  (03:06)
10  Dibi Bo  (02:16)
11  Don Do  (04:27)

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