Music Monday: This Week's New Albums and Videos

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  • Publish Date: May 12, 2014

This week's new releases

Each title listed below will go on sale beginning Tuesday, May 13 unless otherwise indicated.

Tori Amos
Unrepentant Geraldines LISTEN (Amazon)

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The 14th studio album from the singer-songwriter is a return to the piano-driven alternative pop/rock format of her earlier works after devoting her recent albums (like Gold Dust and Night of Hunters) to orchestral works. The release will be followed by a rare solo tour.

The Black Keys
Turn Blue LISTEN (iTunes)

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The duo of Dan Auerbach and Patrick Carney graduated to the big leagues with their two most recent albums, 2010's Brothers and 2011's El Camino, which were massive commercial and critical successes, and earned the pair multiple Grammy nominations. After an uncharacteristically long two-and-a-half-year recording break, they return this week with their eighth LP, which once again finds the Keys working with producer Danger Mouse, and once again collecting great reviews. Next, the duo will hit the road for a massive tour that will find them on the road for the remainder of 2014.

Chromeo
White Women LISTEN (iTunes)

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[12 May ] Canadian party band Chromeo return with their fourth album of polished, tongue-in-cheek electro-funk today. The guest roster includes Toro y Moi, Ezra Koenig (Vampire Weekend), Solange, and Pat Mahoney (LCD Soundsystem), though some critics are finding the results to be partially (or wholly) unsuccessful.

Guided by Voices
Cool Planet

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Let's face it: it's time to call out Robert Pollard as a slacker. Cool Planet is just his second album of 2014 (following February's Motivational Jumpsuit), putting him well off his 2013 pace of 5 full-lengths and one EP (including solo and side projects). The new 16-track set features Kevin March behind the drumkit, replacing the fired Kevin Fennell.

Michael Jackson
Xscape

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Being dead has done nothing to slow down Michael Jackson's musical output. On the contrary, he's more prolific these days than ever before. For Jackson's latest posthumous release Xscape, producers such as Antonio "L.A." Reid, Timbaland, Rodney Jerkins, and J-Roc sifted through two decades worth of aborted studio sessions from the 1980s and '90s, first identifying 24 candidates among the unfinished and previously unreleased tracks, and eventually narrowing the tracklist down to eight songs (including one, "Love Never Felt So Good," that was co-written by Paul Anka in 1983). Those songs were then re-recorded (aside from MJ's vocals) with modern production techniques. A deluxe edition adds bonus tracks plus the original (unaltered) recordings, as well as a DVD with a making-of documentary.

Little Dragon
Nabuma Rubberband LISTEN (Amazon)

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Nabuma Rubberband follows three years after Little Dragon's last, Ritual Union. The Swedish electronic-pop band, fronted by talented, in-demand singer Yukimi Nagano, worked with a string quartet for the first time on the new set, which critics find stylish and classy, though perhaps a bit short of exciting.

The Pains of Being Pure at Heart
Days of Abandon LISTEN (YouTube)

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The Brooklyn indie pop band returns after a three-year break with its Andy Savours-produced third album, which finds frontman/songwriter Kip Berman backed by a slightly retooled lineup that now also includes Jen Goma (of A Sunny Day in Glasgow) and Kelly Pratt (who has worked with Beirut and David Byrne & St. Vincent). The band's live lineup has also been reconfigured, with departed guitarist Christoph Hochheim now back in the fold.

Swans
To Be Kind 2xCD LISTEN (NPR)

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Since re-forming Swans four years ago, Michael Gira has been remarkably prolific, already releasing two studio albums (including 2012's stunning The Seer) and several live albums. Proceeds from their most recent live set have been used to finance the recording of this new double studio album, To Be Kind, with John Congleton. St. Vincent and Cold Specks are among the guests on the two-hour, 10-song set.

Additional releases

Agalloch The Serpent & The Sphere LISTEN (NPR)
Amen Dunes Love LISTEN (Pitchfork)
Produced by Godspeed You! Black Emperor's Efrim Menuck
Joseph Arthur Lou
Arthur covers 12 songs by Lou Reed
James Bay Let It Go EP
Blondie Blondie 4(0) Ever 2xCD LISTEN (CoS)
First disc is a new studio album (Ghosts of Download); second disc features new recordings of classic Blondie tracks
Cheap Girls Famous Graves LISTEN (CoS)
The Clientele Suburban Light 2xCD
Expanded reissue of terrific 2000 singles collection adds B-sides, covers, and 3 previously unreleased tracks
David J An Eclipse of Ships
Alexandre Desplat Godzilla OST
Down Down IV – Part Two EP
Explosions in the Sky & Steve Jablonsky Lone Survivor OST
Fatima Yellow Memories
Geronimo! Cheap Trick LISTEN (Stereogum)
Hallelujah The Hills Have You Ever Done Something Evil?
Hiss Tracts Shortwave Nights
The Howlin' Brothers Trouble
Iamsu! Sincerely Yours
Killer Be Killed Killer Be Killed
Kishi Bashi Lighght LISTEN (NPR)
Kitty Impatiens EP
La Sera Hour of the Dawn
Walter Martin We're All Young Together
Solo debut from The Walkmen member features guest appearances by members of that band as well as The National, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, and Clap Your Hands Say Yeah
Dave Mason Future's Past
John Mayall A Special Life
Me First & The Gimme Gimmes Are We Not Men We Are Diva
Mimicking Birds Eons LISTEN (Stereogum)
Mirah Changing Light LISTEN (NPR)
Guests include Greg Saunier (Deerhoof) and Mary Timony
Mushroomhead The Righteous & The Butterfly
Neighbors Will You Please Be Quiet, Please?
Dolly Parton Blue Smoke LISTEN (NPR)
Rascal Flatts Rewind
Sean Nicholas Savage Bermuda Waterfall LISTEN (Pitchfork)
Sturgill Simpson Metamodern Sounds in Country Music LISTEN (NPR)
Candi Staton Life Happens
Sylvan Esso Sylvan Esso LISTEN (NPR)
New duo features members of Megafaun and Mountain Man
Tiny Ruins Brightly Painted One LISTEN (NY Times)
Tobacco Ultima II Massage LISTEN (Pitchfork)
Vallenfyre Splinters
Various I Saved Latin! A Tribute to Wes Anderson 2xCD
Features artists such as Kristin Hersh, Juliana Hatfield, Matt Pond, and Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin covering songs heard in the director's films
Various Music From the Original Series Orange Is the New Black OST
Kristeen Young The Knife Shift LISTEN (SPIN)
Guests include Dave Grohl and Tony Visconti
Young Widows Easy Pain

More streaming and downloadable new music

American Football
ALBUM American Football (deluxe reissue) streaming at Pitchfork.
Tori Amos
TRACK "16 Shades of Blue" streaming at NPR.
Austra
TRACK "Habitat" (from the forthcoming Habitat EP) streaming at Soundcloud.
Haley Bonar
ALBUM Last War streaming until its 5/20 release at NPR.
Braid
TRACK "Bang" streaming at NPR.
Coldplay
ALBUM Ghost Stories streaming until its 5/19 release at iTunes.
Guided by Voices
TRACK "Table at Fool's Tooth" streaming at Noisey.
Jolie Holland
ALBUM Wine Dark Sea streaming until its 5/20 release at NPR.
Michael Jackson
TRACKS "Xscape" and "Blue Gangsta" streaming at MTV.
TRACK "Do You Know Where Your Children Are?" streaming at Radio.com.
TRACK "Loving You" streaming at Idolator.
Kimbra
TRACK "90s Music" streaming at YouTube.
Klaxons
TRACK "Show Me a Miracle" streaming at YouTube.
Hamilton Leithauser
TRACK "In The Shallows" (new non-album B-side) streaming at Soundcloud.
Lykke Li
TRACK "No One Ever Loved" (from The Fault In Our Stars OST) streaming at YouTube.
Merchandise
TRACK "No You And Me" streaming at Soundcloud.
Conor Oberst
TRACK "Kick" streaming at Pitchfork.
ALBUM Upside Down Mountain streaming until its 5/20 release at NPR.
OOIOO
TRACK "Atatawa" streaming at Soundcloud.
Reigning Sound
TRACK "Never Coming Home" streaming at Soundcloud.
Emma Ruth Rundle
ALBUM Some Heavy Ocean streaming at Pitchfork.
Shabazz Palaces
TRACK "They Come In Gold" streaming at Soundcloud.
Yann Tiersen
ALBUM Infinity streaming until its 5/20 release at NPR.
White Sea [M83's Morgan Kibby]
TRACK "Future Husbands Past Lives" streaming at Soundcloud.
ALBUM In Cold Blood (out next week) streaming at Hype Machine.

On TV this week (new episodes only)

  • Monday: The Black Keys (Letterman, plus Live on Letterman webcast at 7:30p ET) Franz Ferdinand (Carson Daly), M.I.A. (Meyers), Neil Young and Jack White (Fallon; their performance will be pressed to vinyl live during the broadcast)
  • Tuesday: The Black Keys (Colbert), Hozier (Letterman), Night Terrors of 1927 (Carson Daly), Dolly Parton (Fallon), Wild Cub (Conan)
  • Wednesday: Lily Allen (Fallon), Birds of Satan (Kimmel), Blondie (Daily Show), Randy Houser (Letterman), The Preatures (Carson Daly), The Wild Feathers (Meyers)
  • Thursday: Iggy Azalea (Kimmel)
  • Friday: Chromeo (Letterman), Elbow (Fallon)
  • Saturday: St. Vincent (Saturday Night Live)

Recent artist and industry news

  • Apple is reportedly on the verge of acquiring Beats Electronics for $3.2 billion, though many financial analysts question the logic of the deal. - Wall Street Journal
  • Check out the CBC's '90s alt-rock vocal hook supercut.
  • Watch a trailer and some clips for the Kickstarter-funded documentary about the shoegaze movement, Beautiful Noize, which profiles artists such as My Bloody Valentine, Cocteau Twins, and the Jesus and Mary Chain.

The latest music videos

Lana Del Rey, "West Coast":

Deltron 3030 feat. Jamie Cullum, "Do You Remember":

Mogwai, "Simon Ferocious":

Savages, "Fuckers":

Courtney Love, "You Know My Name":

First Aid Kit, "Cedar Lane":

Sia, "Chandelier":

Metronomy, "Reservoir":

Flying Lotus, "Phantasm":

Usher, "Good Kisser":

Eminem, "Headlights" [directed by Spike Lee]:

In the studio / coming soon

  • EDM star Deadmau5 will release his seventh album, While (1<2), on June 17th. The double album will feature 25 tracks. - Billboard
  • Shabazz Palaces return with second LP Lese Majesty on July 29 via Sub Pop.
  • British singer La Roux will release her sophomore album Trouble in Paradise on 7/7.
  • Madonna has been in the studio with Diplo to record her next album. - Billboard
  • Why Do the Heathen Rage?, the first album in a decade for Matmos side project The Soft Pink Truth, will consist of house music covers of classic black metal tracks; it's out June 17th via Thrill Jockey. - Pitchfork
  • Robert Plant's upcoming (and still untitled) solo set will be out September 9th; he tells Rolling Stone that it is "very West African and very Massive Attack-y."
  • 1990s emo band Braid will release No Coast, their first album in 16 years, on July 8th.
  • Sinéad O'Connor will release her 10th album, The Vishnu Room, on August 12th via new label Nettwerk. - Billboard
  • Big Boi has signed a new record deal with Epic, though there's no word yet on a release date for his next solo album. - Billboard
  • After her current tour ends, Miley Cyrus will head to the studio to record her next album ... with the Flaming Lips. - Rolling Stone

Visit Metacritic's Album Release Calendar for a full listing of upcoming release dates, updated daily.

Tours and festivals

  • Dates for next year's Coachella festival have been set: April 10-12 and April 17-19, 2015. Tickets go on sale this Friday at 10am PDT.
  • Lily Allen has announced fall dates in North America. - Billboard
  • The Black Keys will spend the remainder of 2014 on the road in support of their new album; some dates feature St. Vincent. - Billboard
  • Neutral Milk Hotel continue to add dates to their 2014 tour. - Pitchfork
  • Conor Oberst has added more U.S. dates. - CoS
  • Spoon have announced a few live dates for summer and fall as they gear up to release their first album since 2010's Transference. - Pitchfork
  • The War on Drugs kick off a North American leg of their tour in September. - Pitchfork

Comments (3)

  • wyatt5  

    The Guardian review of Nick Mulvey's album First Mind should be 80 (four stars), instead of 60.

  • LamontRaymond  

    Am I the only one who doesn't get The Black Keys? Saw them at the old Spectrum and was bored to DEATH.

  • pranavissmart  

    Shouldn't Quietus review of Swans should be 95? It's written 80 there.

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