While the site was ghostly quiet last week on New Music Tuesday, the opposite will be true this week! A tremendous haul was snatched up today as it was quite a spectacular and busy release week. We start off the releases with new albums from Robert Plant, Justin Townes Earle, the return of Interpol, and the sophomore release from Death From Above 1979, a decade after their début album. All of these I didn’t even end up picking up this week for numerous reasons. Don’t you worry though, I was in need of a big bag for all of today’s acquisitions.
Jillian Banks highly anticipated début album hits in all the right deep dark R&B places. Every single that we have heard from her over the past year plus has made it to the début plus a number of previously unreleased tracks. The album comes in at a solid 14 tracks and coming just shy of a full hour of non-stop music. Highlighted by the singles Waiting Game, Brain, Beggin For Thread, Drowning and Change there is plenty of music for you to wrap your ears around.
Be sure not to miss out on This Is What It Feels Like or Warm Water and the previously unreleased track Fuck Em Only We Know. I have spoken in length numerous times about Banks so I will let you enjoy her entire début album without much more ado.
Don’t get me wrong, this isn’t one of those gag-y bubblegum pop albums, not one bit. It is simply a highly produced, well-coordinated, ballad-rich album. The lead single from the album is the track Bad Habit which appears as the 6th track on the album, but there is much more to the album than just the single. Each track on the album seems to take on a new life and borrow from a different style. Tracks like See Me Now include piano and even chorale accompaniment, something you probably would have never expected from these blokes. After hearing a track like that, the last thing you’d probably expect next would be a track like Down, which is a spiced up version of a classic call-and-answer rock-and-roll boogie track. The entire album is an enjoyable romp of tracks worth listening to multiple times. At 13 tracks and sub-40 minutes, it is a quick listen and diverse enough for multiple replays. Be sure to indulge and enjoy it all!
What surprised me so much about this album was the unexpected overall quality of the entire album. I had heard the incredibly catchy single Riptide time and time again and never grew tired of it, but to expect the same from the rest of the album came as a fabulous surprise.
Besides that tracks such as Mess Is Mine, From Afar and First Time are ones you don’t want to miss. These tracks are heartfelt, well-written and a pleasure to listen to. Despite his Australian upbringing, many of his tracks are written for a more American audience as witnessed in his lyrics and locale references. The track Georgia for instance, is an allusion to the classic Ray Charles track and he even goes as far as quoting it in the lyrics. His lyrics, apart from listing a multitude of places are also all about traveling and distance. Perfectly understandable considering he has spent the last year and a half touring non-stop around the world. Be sure to give this album a try, you might just discover that you enjoy it.
and I’m not done yet…
To tell you the truth, I had never really been all that interested in this group’s music, but having heard the pair of singles from their new album, I was enticed enough to pick it up. Speaking of singles, these tracks are much more pop-y and mainstream sounding than previous ventures had been. Those singles are Never Work for Free and I’m Callin’. At a minimum, give both of these songs a listen.
Lastly, and in my opinion, one of the biggest surprises of this week’s New Music Tuesday releases was the drop of the brand new U2 album, Songs Of Innocence, for free on iTunes to over half a billion subscribers for free.
This took place during the big Apple announcement and revealing event today of the new iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus and iWatch. After debuting their track The Miracle (Of Joey Ramone) the band then announced the name of the brand new album and that they had partnered with Apple to release it as a free download to all iTunes subscribers. Although a début could have been expected with all the hubbub around the event, the album release most likely came as a total surprise to most. Late last year the fantastic track Ordinary Love was released for the Nelson Mandela biopic.
Then, during the 2014 Superbowl the group gave away a free download of their single Invisible – (RED) Edit to benefit the charity RED. Over the course of this year, the group’s Danger Mouse produced album had initially boasted a release late Summer release date, which was then scrapped and it was announced the group was going back to the studio to re-record and a new album may not come until 2015. All-in-all it was not what I was expecting, but I’m definitely not here to complain about it. Whether you love or hate Bono and co. this announcement was huge news. This easily surpassed the size and scope of Beyoncé’s surprise release last December. Some people have already been critical of this ploy and see this as an easy cash grab, but if you think about it, the band has been doing this for years and years. Gone are the days of bands standing on the weight of their music alone and being able to support themselves financially. For the older generation readers, one might remember the group back in the 80’s partnered with Zippo on a special box set release of their music, so this is not a new concept for the band. To bring it even more recent, U2 was one of the first partners with Apple on their breakthrough device the iPod with their special U2 Edition iPod in black and red to coincide with the release of their album How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb. To tell you the truth, I bought one myself but I am also a huge fan. It makes sense that the group would once again pair with the company on the same day they officially declare the very same product dead.
While the album is expectedly far from one of the group’s best (but I mean really, were we thinking the second coming of The Joshua Tree?) there are still some tracks of note that are classic U2. Raised By Wolves is one of those kind of tracks, with the classic Edge driving guitar riff and Bono belting out the lyrics. Another track not to miss is This Is Where You Can Reach Me Now. It starts out with a brief resemblance of The Rolling Stones’ Sympathy For The Devil before breaking into a bouncy track with a very dance-y feel to it. If you are a fan of the band, give the album a shot while its free.
Another surprise on the day, there was an excellent stock of new vinyl arrivals in the store that I quickly picked through and grabbed to add to my collection as well, including a pristine copy of Pink Floyd’s fantastic double album The Wall, among others.
And finally, I leave you with two lone tracks. The first is the newest video for Alt-J’s latest single Every Other Freckle. The other track is a brand new single from another Irish act, and a band who is one of the first on CHVRCHES very own label.
And now, as always, here was everything acquired on this New Release Tuesday:
- U2 – The Unforgettable Fire (vinyl)
- U2 – Songs Of Innocence
- Mott The Hoople – All The Young Dudes (vinyl)
- Pink Floyd – The Wall (vinyl)
- The Kooks – Listen
- Tennis – Ritual In Repeat
- Vance Joy – Dream Your Life Away
- BANKS – Goddess
Now Playing: Alt-J – Every Other Freckle
SOAK – B a noBody