It is hard to believe that September is almost here -- it seems like summer just started! But before we know it the kids will be back in school and we will all be getting ready for the holiday season. I love this time of year... The end of summer, I mean. I was actually one of those weird kids who didn't mind going back to school. I looked forward to the end of summer and the beginning of fall and winter. The award season is also right around the corner and the Emmy Awards are this Sunday! I am thinking they are actually going to be very funny this year since they are hosted by Jimmy Fallon. I do still love Jimmy Fallon from his SNL days. I am rarely up late enough to catch his show but I do like it whenever I manage to watch it. I still think that Tina Fey and Jimmy Fallon should host the Oscars together. And yes, the Oscars are also right around the corner -- the Oscar nominations will be given out January 25th and the actual Oscars will be on February 27th!
It has been a couple of slow weeks for music new releases. Arcade Fire week was amazing a couple of weeks ago but it was all sort of downhill after that. Now things are getting exciting again this week! The great end of summer albums are coming out and there are some fantastic albums right around the corner to get us through the end of the year. Additionally, there are some exciting new EPs and singles and 7"s out this week. No Age put out a new single called "Glitter" on 12" and 7". They have a new album, Everything in Between, out on September 28th. Blonde Redhead released "Not Getting There" as a 12" this week. They are one of my absolute favorites who never let me down and I can't get enough of them! They have a new album out on September 14th called Penny Sparkle. I still remember the first time I heard Blonde Redhead. That girl has one of those amazing voices and I have never heard anyone like her. Glad to have them back in my life! I assume by now that everyone has heard them but if you haven't, check out A Melody of Certain Damaged Lemons and In an Expression of the Inexpressible first.
Listen to "Not Getting There" by Blonde Redhead from the new 12"...
One of the coolest and weirdest releases this week is by Conan O'Brien. Jack White has released a new 7" from Conan on his very own label, Third Man. Yes, you heard it right -- Conan has released a 7" single! I can't really remember the last time a late night show host put out a single or an album. I do own a couple of Joan Rivers albums...but it has been a while. The A side is "And They Call Me Mad?" It is basically a spoken word sort of storytelling. Conan tells a Frankenstein story in the style of Vincent Price. The B side is a previously unreleased interview with Conan and Jack White. It is actually more of Jack White interviewing Conan. I don't know about you, but I am super excited about the new Conan show. Team Coco! I actually really have not watched hardly any late night since Conan left the Tonight Show. I don't really know anyone who likes Jay Leno and I am getting a bit bored of David Letterman. I am ready for Conan to be back in my life! The new show airs on TBS in just a couple of months. The date is November 8th, so mark your calendar. I can't wait! I will be patiently waiting for the Jimmy Fallon 7". Or maybe a Jenny Jones or Sally Jessy Raphael 7"! I for sure think that Oprah should put out a 7"! Come on, Oprah! It is the last year of your show! I would probably buy an Oprah/Whitney Houston split 7".
Also out this week is a new EP from one of my other favorites, Antony & the Johnsons! Antony releases Thank You For Your Love as a CD EP. The vinyl version will be out in a couple of weeks. The new full length album is called Swanlights and is out October 12th. As you would expect, I can't wait. I fell in love with Antony when Amoeba Hollywood first opened. He was just starting to become a little well known. His first album was released on Durtro at the time and then later reissued on Secretly Canadian. It was one of those albums that you really only had to listen to once to fall in love with. He really seemed like he came from a different period in time. Somebody really could have told me that they had uncovered some recording from some husky lady vocalist from the 1940's. His vocal style is sort of amazing -- imagine a goth version of Nina Simone. I know Nina is already sort of goth! Maybe imagine Marc Almond or Alison Moyet mixed with Nina Simone. It is that good. You can't help but be physically and emotionally affected after listening to an Antony & the Johnsons album. I knew he would eventually get more popular over the years -- he was just too good to be ignored. He has gone on to record 2 more full lengths for Secretly Canadian. His first album was self titled, then I Am A Bird Now came out in 2005 and The Crying Light came out in 2009. He also released many singles and EPs over the years. The Another World EP came out in 2008 before his last full length. This new EP is also a sort of teaser for the new album and I am in love with it. I am just glad that we don't have to wait until 2011 for a new album! Anyway, Thank You For Your Love is a bit on the sad side, which is probably why I love it. It also includes a brilliant cover of "Imagine." Antony! Thank you for your love! I like to think that this EP is a thank you to his fans like me for our love for him. I am just so glad Antony decided to give us the gift of his music. If you have never seen this guy perform live, you simply must do it. His shows are up there on my list of my favorites. They are magical experiences.
Listen to "Thank You For Your Love" by Antony & the Johnsons...
There are also some great full length albums out this week, including a great new album from Isobel Campbell and Mark Lanegan called Hawk. It is their third collaboration together. I really do love Mark Lanegan's voice. He has one of those Mark Kozelek type voices -- it just gets to me. It sort of tortures me but I can't get enough of it. I never could have imagined years ago that somebody from Belle & Sebastian would be putting out an album with the singer of The Screaming Trees but it works beautifully. !!! (Chk Chk Chk) also has a new album out this week. By this point in their career you probably either love them or hate them. I personally still love them. It is the same sort of electro funk weird rock stuff you would expect from the band. The Magic Kids have put out a great little pop record called Memphis. I sort of fell in love with them a little bit when I saw them open up for Ariel Pink a couple of weeks ago. Puro Instinct (formerly known as Pearl Harbor) also played that show. I am seriously in love with some Puro Instinct. They currently only have an LP out but I am sure will be releasing some sort of CD soon. You can get the LP at Amoeba Hollywood. They are sort of a mix of Stevie Nicks and Lush. Fleetwood Mac meets Slowdive -- sort of psychedelic shoe gaze. I seriously love these guys. One of my recent favorites, James Blackshaw, also has a new album out this week. I only really started listening to this guy last year but I am hooked and love introducing him to people. He is really sort of all over the place. His albums seem like they could have been made in the 70's, years before he was even born. This new album is called All Is Falling, and is his second album for the label Young God. His album from last year, The Glass Bead Game, is also amazing. I talked about it on my blog last year right here. This new record is a bit more cinematic and moving towards a modern classical sound. Imagine Bert Jansch mixed with some Max Richter.
Don't you worry -- the amazing albums will keep on coming. I guess it really depends on what you consider amazing, but many of my favorites are putting out albums this year. Sufjan Stevens just released a digital only album last week that should be available in stores at some point this year and his full length is also right around the corner -- The Age of Adz will be out on October 12th. Hey, Sufjan...what happened to your 50 states albums? Last time I counted you only had 2 done! I still hope he lives up to his promise. I do have family roots in both Michigan and Illinois, so it's nice that he started with those states, but I need them all! It will be a battle between Sufjan and Antony, with releases on the same day. I can't wait -- it will be like Blur vs. Oasis! We only have to wait two more weeks for the new Interpol album, simply called Interpol. It is out September 7th. Amoeba will have a special Indie only version of the CD. This version comes in o-card packaging with a little poster. We will also have both versions of the LP. This is their 4th album but they are back to more of their old sound and back on Matador Records. Capitol just wasn't the right fit for them. They should stay on Matador forever! The week after that is September 14th, when the singer of The Killers, Brandon Flowers, releases a solo record I was a bit disappointed with the debut solo album of Kele from The Bloc Party but I actually think this Brandon Flowers' album is gonna be good...if you like that kind of thing. And I do! The 14th is also the release date of new albums from Grinderman, Black Mountain, Weezer, Linkin Park, and The Drums! I really hope that this Drums album takes over the world. It still might be my album of the year...but I think there will be a lot to compete with this year.
also out 8/10...
Scott Pilgrim Vs. the World Soundtrack
Beachcomber's Wind by Stornoway
also out 8/17...
Black City by Matthew Dear
Catching a Tiger by Lissie
also out 8/24...
Strange Weather, Isn't It by !!! (Chk Chk Chk)
All Is Falling by James Blackshaw
Hawk by Isobel Campbell & Mark Lanegan
All We Grow by S. Carey
Cho Dependent by Margaret Cho
Cloak & Cipher by Land of Talk
Memphis by Magic Kids
Special Moves by Mogwai
Pale Sketcher by Jesu
Orchard by Ra Ra Riot
Warp Riders by The Sword