This Month's Picks

Dusk (CD)

Ultimate Painting
Dusk , the third album by the London based duo Ultimate Painting finds a nice balance between wispy melancholia and cozy grooviness. Comprised of Jack Cooper of Mazes and James Hoare of Veronica Falls, Ultimate Painting's economical guitar dueling and sparse back beat evoke a sort-of looser Pinback, with touches of The Velvet Underground's self-titled album. Ironically, "I'm Set Free" is not a cover of VU's song off said album, but a vibrato-y original, while "Who Is Your Next Target?" should land well with fans of Kill The Moonlight -era Spoon. The shimmery guitar plinking on "Song For Brian Jones" is particularly hypnotic. More
Genre: Rock

Live At The Greek Theatre (CD)

Joe Bonamassa
On Live at the Greek Theatre , Joe Bonamassa celebrates his musical heroes Freddie, Albert, and B.B. King in style. Bonamassa gives the Kings' classic work his own contemporary spin, without losing the heart, vitality, and power of the originals. The band, who also backed Bonamassa for his Muddy Wolf tribute shows, is excellent as expected, with an ebullient horn section, soulful backing vocalists, and powerful percussion. The recording itself is crisp, clean, and lively; it does an excellent job of conveying the excitement and intensity of the blues rocker's stage shows. These uplifting, dynamic cover versions are a fitting nod to the lasting legacy of the blues. More
Genre: Rock, Blues

Bad Vibrations (CD)

A Day To Remember
Florida metalcore band A Day to Remember refuse to be boxed into genre trappings on their sixth album. From the first song (the title track), pummeling beats and chugging guitars suggest the rhythmic attack of a metal band, while emotional outpouring and melodic smarts call to mind a more traditional rock or emo band. “Paranoia” is reminiscent of Foo Fighters, but with a lot more bite, as the lyrics paint a horror-movie scenario happening only in the speaker’s head. “Naivety” is more straightforward and melodic, as palm-muted guitars move like electricity and Smashing Pumpkins-esque octaves dart around. Meanwhile, the drop-D metal riffs and demon shrieks of “Exposed” sit rather comfortably next to the stunning acoustic outro of “Reassemble” and ascendant melodies “Justified.” It’s rare when a band can successfully provide something for everyone on a heavy rock album, but on Bad Vibrations , that’s just what A Day to Remember does. More
Genre: Rock

Fires Within Fires (CD)

Underground metal heroes Neurosis continue to evolve on their Steve Albini-produced 11th album and first in four years. Indie metalheads will thrill at the album's expansive sound, combining textured atmospheric portions with explosive, searing crescendos. Perfect for fans of bands like Deafheaven, Mastodon, and Isis. More
Genre: Rock

Young As The Morning, Old As The Sea (CD)

The eighth studio album from Mike Rosenberg, the Brighton-born singer/songwriter better known as Passenger, is a panoramic album dealing with themes of relationships and the passing of time that are at once personal and universal. More
Genre: Rock

The Frank Sinatra Collection: Happy Holidays with Frank and Bing / Vintage Sinatra (DVD)

The Frank Sinatra Collection brings together some of Frank's finest performances on television and in concert. This release combines a classic early color television Christmas special from 1957 with a compilation from his 1950s TV shows that includes commentary and reminiscences from his three children: Nancy, Tina, and Frank Sinatra Jr. More

Secret City Records 10th Anniversary Compilation (CD)

Various Artists
Quebec's Secret City Records has been one of the most exciting and revealing indie labels from Canada. Tapping deep into the indie and outsider music scene of Montreal, Secret City Records has proudly released albums by Patrick Watson, Thus Owls, Own Pallett, Suuns, Plants and Animals, and The Barr Brothers. To celebrate their 10th anniversary, they're doing a series of commemorative concerts around the world and are releasing a behemoth of a compilation. Chronologically spanning 34 tracks over two CDs, it's a perfect sampler of a unique sound curated by a one-of-a-kind label. Opening with a bonus track from Patrick Watson's Close To Paradise , "Interference From The Sky" picks up from the avant pop world of Jim O'Rourke. Powered up noise guitars shred over a minimal piano piece and free drumming that recalls Michael Nyman. And it builds and builds until it just disintegrates into nothing. Plants and Animals' "Bye Bye Bye" takes a different route. Instead of going for dramatic grit, this feels closer in spirit to to The Kinks' power pop masterpieces that just exude good vibes. The rich arrangement has a mix of mandolins, pianos, and a loud chorus that sounds more like 1967 than 2016. Suuns is a whole other beast. "Infinity" starts off like a lost Suicide track as ugly drum-machine riffs trot along vocals that are perfectly unsettling. Without ever being sleazy or gross, there's something about the song that makes you feel like you need to take a shower after listening to it. Along with Merge Records and Drag City, Secret City Records' diverse artists are completely unique in the world of indie rock. After listening to this, you'll want to hear it all. More
Genre: Rock

Ash vs Evil Dead: The Complete First Season (BLU)

Ash is back! After decades of laying low, Bruce Campbell's chainsaw-handed cult hero is forced back into action after a zombie plague is unleashed upon the world. Lucy Lawless ( Xena: Warrior Princess ) co-stars as a mysterious figure trying to hunt down Ash and the source of the outbreak. More

Carol [2015] (BLU)

A character piece that is rather simple, in the sense that nothing climactic necessarily happens. Yet, the viewer becomes submerged—witnessing the complexity of these two females and the attempt to find meaning in their own lives— together and independently. More

The Damned: Don't You Wish That We Were Dead (BLU)

The first career-spanning documentary on the legendary band that released the first English punk LP as well as influencing goth and psychobilly. Interpersonal conflicts, financial chicanery, and the dreaded artistic differences abound, but so do the timeless songs and energy. A nice mix of the salty and the sweet from one of the defining ’77 punk godfathers. More