I get really excited about new music all the time-- sometimes it is a bit overwhelming. There is literally so much out today that I don't even know what to talk about. The writers strike may be over, but you can obviously feel its effect when you look at the movies out now in theaters. I have never seen it look so bad. I never thought I would actually choose to go see movies like the Bank Job and 21 simply because there was nothing else out there. But there has been no strike in the music business-- the albums just keep on coming out and I am not even getting time to spend with the albums I love. I have to move on to other ones and leave my favorite albums from weeks ago behind. I like to think that I have good taste when it comes to music, but I seriously have been liking a lot of albums lately. This week some of our old favorites have fantastic new albums. The Breeders have a new album out called Mountain Battles. I will forever love Kim Deal because of the Pixies, so she can really do no wrong. This album has grown on me and I find myself liking it much more that their last one. Nick Cave also has a new album out today. I have not had much time with it yet, but I do like it so far. I really can't stop thinking about seeing him at the Hollywood Bowl. The show is like a year away but I am already getting so excited. The Hollywood Bowl is one of my favorite places in the world. And Nick Cave + Hollywood Bowl = magic. Trent Reznor decided to do a completely instrumental Nine Inch Nails album. It is called Ghosts I-IV. I listened to it today and I sort of forgot it was Nine Inch Nails halfway through it. I do like myself some instrumental music and there were some really great songs on it, I am just not sure I really get it yet. I did find myself wishing for those Trent Reznor vocals on many of the songs. I just need to give it some more time. The Drift has an amazing all instrumental album out today called Memory Drawings. The album sounds similar to their label mates Explosions in the Sky. I know Wumpscut is not for everybody, but I found myself obsessed with their album Bone Peeler from a couple of years ago. I seriously listened to that album over and over again. Sometimes I need some hard and intense dark music in my life. And Wumpscut don't ever let me down.
I tend to not like the live albums in general, but maybe I am starting to actually like them. I really like this new Colin Meloy album Colin Meloy Sings Live! I absolutely fell in love with the Decemberists a couple of years ago. Colin is the singer of the band, the one with the magical voice that I can't get enough of. This album is all recordings from his tour in 2006. I love it. The Foals have their debut album out on Sub Pop today called Antidotes. It seems to be my favorite of the week. Maybe. They don't really sound like what you normally think a Sub Pop band would sound like. They sort of remind me of The Rapture maybe mixed with Built to Spill. They come from the land of England. It is a really fun album and you should like it. You should listen to them here. I also really like this new album by New Bloods. It is called The Secret Life. They are from Portland, Oregon. Sounds a bit like the Slits or Slant 6 or Liliput if they were from Portland. The music is super interesting. The band is made up of 3 ladies playing violin, bass, and drums. I do love the violin so very much, and it is nice to hear it used in a rock band. Listen to them here. Also out today is a new album by Thee Oh Sees on Tomlab. It is one of John Dwyer's bands. They are from San Francisco. Sort of folky weird garage music.
My favorite very special album this week is by Secret Shine. I have liked these guys forever. It just makes me so happy that they are actually still a band and have made a new album. They are from Bristol, England and got their start way back in 1990. They are one of those dreamy shoegaze bands that I fell in love with back in the 90's. Their label, Clairecords, was nice enough to put out the collection After Years a couple of years ago. It is a fantastic collection. I was so happy when it came out. It somehow validated my love for them. It just makes me sad when some of my favorites don't have albums in print. But I never really expected them to actually reform and put out another album. This new album could have easily came out in mid 90s. They sound exactly like they did before. It makes me proud that they were able to put out another great album. I was really obsessed with My Bloody Valentine, Lush, Slowdive, Pale Saints, Brighter and anything shoegazey. I still am actually. It is that mix of intensity and softness that I really love-- like on one hand they are sort of nerdy and wimpy but mixed with an intensity in the music. I can't really get enough of it. I do also always love bands that mix male and female vocals together in their songs.
Secret Shine was on Sarah Records back when they got their start. They basically stopped playing in 1996. After Years came out in 2004 and soon after they put out an acoustic tribute album to one of their band mates who had passed away. Lucky for us, they decided to record a new album. I could not be more happy with the album. It makes me happy in more ways than I can even explain. If you like this dreamy sort of music then you probably know what I am talking about. It just does something to you-- but I guess any really good music does this to you if that is what you are into. If you really really like classical music, then this is sort of what I would imagine a really excellent classical composition would do to you: it just gets down deep inside of you and makes you feel better than you ever thought you could even feel. It is true. Music can be very powerful. Is Shoegaze the new Newage? Newgaze maybe?
also out today...
Mountain Battles by The Breeders
Dig Lazarus Dig!!! by Nick Cave
Do It! by Clinic
In Ghost Colours by Cut Copy
Memory Drawings by The Drift
Antidotes by The Foals
Rabbit Habits by Man Man
Colin Meloy Sings Live! by Colin Meloy
Glow Pt. 2 reissue by The Microphones
Last Tycoon by Peter Moren
The Secret Life by New Bloods
Ghosts I-IV by Nine Inch Nails
Walk it Off by Tapes 'N Tapes
The Master's Bedroom is Worth Spending a Night In by Thee Oh Sees
Schadling by Wumpscut