It has been a busy week, complete with a long weekend road trip, which while relaxing and fun, left little time for music listening. However, I had the foresight to load a bunch of new albums up in the car for some quality first listens. A few albums I did get to check out earlier in the week, and the combination has allowed for a very exciting Roundup, once again filled with releases that I'd been anticipating. With the storms finally pushing summer out to sea this past week, look for more Fall oriented albums in the coming weeks, but these are still mostly summer inspired. Enjoy.
The Arcs - Yours, Dreamily: The debut album from Black Keys' Dan Auerbach's side project band, which also includes Richard Swift, one of my other favorite musicians. This album is mellower than the Keys last record, while still heavily grooved blues rock. There's also a strong '70s influence on here that really sounds good to my ears. I'm sure a lot of people are going to hate on this record, but I've been finding it quite enjoyable.
The Libertines - Anthems for Doomed Youth: For the first time since 2004, the troubled London rock band is back together and has released new music. With Pete Doherty's addiction worries seemingly under control, he and Carl Barat have pooled their talents together once more to rekindle the demon that brought two groundbreaking albums to the world over a decade ago. Their combinded disillusioned perspective comes through a strong as ever, and the band clicks musically to once again give us a Clash infused garage rock. A solid garage punk effort, though I must admit that I prefer the fragile beauty of Babyshambles.
Mark Lanegan - Houston: This archival record captures demos from 2002, a full two years before the Screaming Trees frontman's breakthrough album Bubblegum that established him as the new generation Tom Waits. These recordings more than any others, really capture that dust bowl doom that has come to fine his revived career. This is a must for fans, or fans of his band, or fans of his Soulsavers work. This is a real gem of dark Americana rock.
Triptides - Azur: This is the fourth record from the Bloomington, Indiana band and it sounds like one of those sunshine indie surf rock albums born on the California coast. Laid back vibes wash over the garage rock riffs to create something altogether pleasant. There's a consistency throughout that gives the whole a thing a solidly definable mood. Certainly worth checking out if you like bands like Best Coast.
Maple Bee - Over at Mine: Just released is this intimate live recording of songs from the singer songwriter's career. I love Maple Bee (member of QueenAdreena) and all her albums, and welcome the chance to hear this kind of recording. There are moments of brilliance on here. At times she reminds me Drugstore and at others, it's more like her sister's Ruby Throat project. A little more raw than her studio efforts, and definitely worth getting into if you like her work. "No Ropes on Me," "Metal Bird," and "These Four Worlds" are my personal favorites.
Elton John - Captain Fantastic and Brown Dirt Cowboy: Following the mega success of 1973's Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, Elton and Bernie Taupin were given free reign by the record company to follow their muse. Two years later they released this, their glam rock album of personal songs. Personally, I like it slightly better than Yellow Brick Road. It includes the wonderful "Somebody Saved My Life Tonight" and the underrated "(Gotta Get A) Meal Ticket." I picked this up on vinyl last weekend and it's a nice addition to my Elton collection.