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New releases this week include Guardians of The Galaxy Vol 2, Sid & Nancy [Criterion] & Effects.

Haim LP Out Now

Haim’s sophomore album, "Something To Tell You," is now available on 140-gram 2-LP vinyl.

Pete Townshend Contest

Win tickets to see Pete Townshend’s Classic Quadrophenia September 16 at LA’s Greek Theatre.

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Café Tacvba Contest

Win tickets to Café Tacvba, La Santa Cecilia & Mon Laferte at the Hollywood Bowl on Sept. 17th. View

Akounak: Purple Rain in the Sahara at Starlight Social Club

Nigeria’s Mdou Moctar performs after a screening of his film Akounak Tedalat Taha Tazoughai, also known as the Tuareg Purple Rain, 9/9 in Oakland. View

Desert Daze Tickets on Sale Now at Amoeba Hollywood

Desert Daze returns to Joshua Tree October 12-15! Weekend passes and camping passes are on sale now at Amoeba Hollywood with low fees. View

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Watch Dutch band Klangstof perform a set of dreamy indie pop songs from their debut album, Close Eyes To Exit, in our green room.

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The Singles (CD)


Can — The Singles is an excellent overview for those new to the pioneering Krautrockers’ oeuvre as well as a killer collection of favorites for longtime fans. This is the first time the band’s singles have been compiled and released together; listening to the band’s evolution is a fascinating journey from more straightforward rock/funk/soul numbers to some of their deepest, weirdest cuts. You’ll find classic tracks “Vitamin C,” “Halleluwah,” and “I Want More” here, along with more obscure gems like “Turtles Have Short Legs,” a 1971 7” that never appeared on a studio LP, despite being a pretty rad little tune. Can — The Singles is a well-curated document of what made Can such an influential, enduring band.

On The Echoing Green (CD)

Jefre Cantu-Ledesma

On the Echoing Green finds Jefre Cantu-Ledesma exploring the realms of shoegaze, dream pop, and ambient music with the help of guest vocalists Honey Owens, Maxwell August Croy, and Sobrenadar. Slowdive and Cocteau Twins are readily apparent influences here, but the compositions are all very much the work of Cantu-Ledesma.The result is a shimmering, gorgeous, haunting LP that lingers in the mind long after the last note has sounded. Vivid, engaging, and lovely, this latest release comes highly recommended.

City Music (CD)

Kevin Morby

Kevin Morby’s easygoing, dreamy new LP, City Music , is the perfect soundtrack for lonely urban nights. The songs are contemplative, wistful, and gentle in their exploration of the griefs and delights of city living. There’s a sense of solitude behind the tracks here, with Morby’s Dylan-esque vocals rising above his gentle melodies like a friend recounting a familiar tale. The former Woods bassist also puts his distinctive spin on a couple excellent covers: the Germs’ “Caught in My Eye” and Leonard Cohen’s “Downtown’s Lights.” An introspective, moody rainy day (or night) album.

Tomorrow Forever (CD)

Matthew Sweet

Sharing the name with a particularly unsettling Margaret Keane painting, Matthew Sweet’s distinctive brand of power pop is still just as wide eyed and potent as the stares of the doe-like waifs from those kitschy canvases. Culled from 38 songs recorded over the span of 3 years and whittled down to a final 17, Tomorrow Forever is Sweet’s first album since 2011, and originates with a 2014 Kickstarter campaign promising to bring songs with “strong clear delivery, energetic and heartfelt from rock to melancholy and back again.” What reads as a cover letter to join the songwriters guild translates into a record of sonic lushness; featuring a blend of muscular guitar work, wistful melodies, and pop savvy that hits all the sweet spots (sorry) with some strong ensemble playing courtesy of the cameo-laden backing band, which includes none other than Rod Argent of the Zombies providing keyboards. Guided By Voices, Big Star, and R.E.M. may be unaccounted for on that supporting cast list, but echoes of their sound can be felt here, distilled into a pure, Merseybeat worshipping brand of rock n roll and delivered with Sweet’s distinctive, yearning voice. The guy behind one of the best songs of the '90s proves that two decades later he is still full of life on a crowdfunded album of crowd pleasers.

Good Time [OST] (CD)

Oneohtrix Point Never

Oneohtrix Point Never (aka Daniel Lopatin) won the Best Soundtrack Award at Cannes for his work on the Safdie brothers film Good Time . The score is moody, minimalist, and meant to be savored. Its highlight is “The Pure and the Damned,” a surprisingly gentle, mournful piano track featuring Iggy Pop. Don’t just relegate this one to the “soundtrack” section; more than just background music, it’s a contemplative, sensitive slice of atmosphere that deserves your full attention.

A Walk With Love & Death (CD)


The Melvins don't take it easy. And I'm not talking musically, though they definitely don't take it easy on that front. But they're not known for taking much time off. Between albums, side projects, EPs and other odds and ends, the Melvins are among the most prolific bands of the last 50 years. So it's almost a shock that their newest release is their first double-album - it's both an original studio album and a soundtrack for a new film. Split beautifully between love and death, their latest is pure psychedelic frenzy made for fans of the freaked out Japanese psych scene of the '90s and the angry noise rock of the '80s. If "What's Wrong With You?" was recorded with old mics and into quarter-inch magnetic tape, the song could've come right out of the bad vibes of 1969. It has the energy of MC5, but a post-modernist, ironic streak that's classic Melvins. The lyrics are bitter, but surprisingly funny and always far from mean-spirited. The heavy "Christ Hammer" thuds along in a way that's closer to their metal and grunge roots. The vocals chant with layers of distorted audio that sound like the voices are fortresses made of stone. It's heavy and poetically impenetrable, but the riff is catchy enough to cross over to normies unaccustomed to Melvins' level of experimentation. The show stopping solo toward the end might be the best part as the song catches on fire with distortion and feedback that would make Japanese rockers High Rise blush. A Walk With Love & Death sees Melvins at their most ambitious, and it works. It never feels like they stumble. Instead the deliver a real rock album in a sea of mediocre, soulless, and half-hearted efforts.

Every Valley (CD)

Public Service Broadcasting

Public Service Broadcasting’s Every Valley is a finely-polished collage album featuring clips from old newsreels and archival interviews layered atop atmospheric electronica, prog, and indie rock melodies. On this album, the band tells the story of the decline of the Welsh coal-mining industry, with the sampled voices of the miners describing the loss of their way of life, their work, and their community. The impact of the album is bolstered even further by a pair of excellent guest appearances; the Manic Street Preachers' James Dean Bradfield gives a bold, angry performance while Camera Obscura’s Tracyanne Campbell taps into a haunting sense of grief over a displaced lifestyle and all its memories and hopes. As the voices reach out from across distances of time and space, the effect is poignant, stirring, and timely.

Iteration (CD)

Com Truise

After a six year wait, Com Truise is back with Iteration , a lush, funk-inflected odyssey into electro. Cinematic in scope, the album draws inspiration from the synth-filled soundtracks of the 1980s; listening is a transportive experience to a world of city nights, black leather, and neon lights. Make no mistake — Iteration is a toe-tapper, a definite dancefloor-filler, but this smart, emotive album is also pretty moving. Atmosphere is all here, and there’s a real sense of feeling beneath the hypnotic rhythms, technicolor melodies, and pulsating synths. If you dig evocative, dark dance music, this moody LP sets the scene.

The Nashville Sound (CD)

Jason Isbell And The 400 Unit

Since the election last November there have been plenty of songs written about the turmoil, fear, and dissatisfaction that seems to envelope the nation, but alt-country/rocker Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit's song "White Man's World," off their new record The Nashville Sound , is perhaps one of the most direct and potent. While writing lyrics like "Mama wants to change that Nashville sound, but they're never gonna let her," Isbell paints vivid portraits of a culture complicit in old-fashioned routines of sexism and racism, but instead of coming from the point of view of the underdog, Isbell's song is a call to arms for the dominant forces to change themselves. "There's no such thing as someone else's war, your creature comforts aren't the only thing worth fighting for," he sings during the chorus. "Hope the High Road" is another politically charged anthem that uses a down-home, "git 'er done" attitude to inspire cultural change within the dominant culture, which, to a certain extent, preaches, but never feels condescending. This is not to say that Isbell has abandoned his cultural roots. With songs like album opener "Last of My Kind" he points to a changing environment that seems to ignore the values he grew up with, leaving him feeling like an old soul lost in a strange land. "Cumberland Gap" is the real rocker of the album with almost Brit-pop like guitars that pierce and bite throughout, and "Tupelo" is a contemporary take on familiar country ballads that at times brings to mind the pairing of Gram Parsons and Emmylou Harris.

Two Mics & The Truth: Unplugged & Unhinged In America (CD)

Violent Femmes

The Violent Femmes have been around long enough to get played on oldies radio, but their punk rhythms, sardonic lyrics, and new wave attitude makes them harder to pin down than most other bands from the '80s. Their latest album further adds to the band's mystique. Though they just co-headlined a tour with Echo and the Bunnymen,  2 Mics & The Truth is the opposite of a crowded venue with guitars amplified to ear popping levels. Instead, the album is an acoustic take on their catalog featuring live radio performances they did across the nation while promoting their tour. The acoustic versions of songs like "Blister in the Sun" and "Gone Daddy Gone" are more akin to a deconstruction than a cover. They play around with the song structure, using it as a guideline instead of holy musical scripture, and the result is playful and often silly, altering our expectations of the original songs and highlighting frontman Gordon Gano's skill as a writer. Even the instrumentation is playful, including guitars, bass, banjos, and a barbecue grill used as a drum set!  2 Mics & The Truth feels less like a nostalgia trip and more like a visit from an old friend who's gotten shaggier... and weirder.

Paranormal [Deluxe Edition] (CD)

Alice Cooper

Alice Cooper is a one of a kind rock God. Although his shock rocker antics made him a legendary and controversial figure surrounded by questionable rumors and hearsay, the real Alice Cooper took elements of glam and made them dangerous and weirder in a type of proto-metal sound. Before the shredding guitars, black clothes, and connections to horror films that now seem to define metal, Alice Cooper put fear into the hearts of the '70s "me generation." Though in today's world he seems fairly tame compared to what you can watch on YouTube, Alice Cooper does a type of comical and winking variation on the theatrical rock sound he embraced with his latest album, Paranormal , that is equal parts campy and seriously crazy. The melody of the title track is rich and melodramatic, but the lyrics are filled with sardonic and outright mean things to say that feel like Alice Cooper has never dropped the influence of his old pal Frank Zappa. But riding behind it is "Dead Flies," which has a blistering drum cadence that could be right out of a military school. In case you weren't sure if Cooper was a weird dude, give "Genuine American Girl" a whirl. Recorded with the original band from his first album, Cooper sings from the point of view of a teenage girl, something guaranteed to cause a few people to squirm in their seats, making the song funny and outright disturbing. Steal your sister's mascara, slather it under your eyes and wear an outfit that would make a leather daddy blush. Being the type of weirdo who loves Alice Cooper feels more necessary than ever.

Not Dark Yet (CD)

Shelby Lynne

The long-awaited collaboration between the Alabama-born sisters Shelby Lynne and Allison Moorer, Not Dark Yet , seems so natural, so fitting, it’s a wonder the pair never teamed up before. Their voices interplay beautifully, each lending her own distinctive artistic elements to create a fascinating, intoxicating album of Americana harmonies. The sisters put their own spin on tracks by Bob Dylan, Merle Haggard, the Louvin Brothers, Nick Cave…and the Killers. Honestly, each track is a revelation. These aren’t the phoned-in retreads cover songs can so often become. Instead, Lynne and Moorer bring new life to the songs, so much so you might find yourself stopping in your tracks to listen to an old favorite, revealed in a novel light.

Colored Vinyl

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Amoeblogger BillyJam highlights the top five new hip-hop albums, including DJ Shadow & Dizzy Wright.