Saturday, July 8, 2017

Weekend Music Roundup

The weekend has arrived and so have a bunch of stellar new releases come to welcome the summer season. This week, I take a look at several new releases. Some of them are ones I'd been looking forward to, and one was a complete gamble and a wonderful surprise. There's also a couple of older albums that I decided to check out and was rewarded with some great tunes. Hopefully you will all find something to gamble on here and be rewarded as I was. Enjoy.

Devil's Witches - Velvet Magic: This is the debut full length record from heavy psych stoner metal band and it's fairly brilliant. This is certainly a new golden age for fans of the genre, like myself, and this album is up there with the likes of Uncle Acid and Electric Wizard. It's HEAVY but groovy and grabbed my attention from the amazing opening track, "Apache Snow." Other favorites are "Black Cauldron," "Voodoo Woman," "Motorpyscho" and the title track.

Mark Kozelek - Night Talks: Released last month, this is the newest EP from the Sun Kil Moon singer songwriter. Just five songs, including an acoustic version of a song off the most recent album and a great duet with Kath Bloom. There are some tracks on here that return to his more traditional song structure and are nice to hear, while others are more inline with his new style. Worth checking out for fans.

The Wonder Stuff - The Eight Legged Groove Machine: The late '80s was a strange time for indie rock, especially British indie rock. It would be a few years before the '90s British sound would be defined, and the previous sound had been dying down by '88 when this debut emerged. Perhaps that's why this sounds more inline with American rock than British, though influences like The Kinks are apparent and the beginnings of the Baggy sound are forming. "It's Yer Money I'm After Baby," "Rue the Day," "Like a Merry Go Round," and "Poison" are standouts on a great debut.

Mando Diao - Good Times: The first album in three years from the Swedish indie band is a welcomed return to form after their album, which delved into electropop for some ill-advised reason. This uses some of those elements, but uses them sparingly and more effectively. While still not as compelling as some of their earlier work, this is decent enough record that fans will most likely enjoy. "Shake," "Watch Me Now," "One, Two, Three," and the title track were standouts for me.  

Eloy - Colours: This is the eighth album from the German prog rock band, released in 1980. I went into this album having no idea what to expect and was pretty blown away. There are clear influences on here, from Pink Floyd to Uriah Heep and it's equally as good, not simply watered down versions. After listening to this, I was sort of surprised I hadn't heard of this band before, because it's exactly the kind of album I've been into for decades. "Giant," "Gallery," "Child Migration," and "Illuminations" were my personal favorites.

Fleet Foxes - Crack-Up: Nearly a decade ago, the Seattle based indie chamber folk band released a stunning debut, followed up by another album three years later. Now, six years after that album, the band has finally released their third. Fans of the previous two records will enjoy this. I can promise that, and why can I promise that, because this sounds like the same album. I loved the first record, and liked the second, but my problem with that was that it was indistinguishable from the first. This one is no different. There were a few times while listening to this album when I was convinced that I'd heard the song before, either on a previous album, or already on this one. None of this is to say it's not good, because it is, but they've become one of these bands where you only need one album by them and you'll be fine.

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