Release Date Buffet: 5/11/2018

Quick Impressions:

Arctic Monkeys – Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino
Producer: James Ellis Ford, Alex Turner
Label: Domino
Genre: Psychedelic Pop, Art Rock
Quick Impressions: Say what you will about Severus Turner transforming the Arctic Monkeys into his Little Shadow Puppets version 1 (2?) but this was the most natural transition between records excepting perhaps Whatever People Say I Am to Favourite Worst Nightmare; These Arctic Monkeys just went back to that same sexy sixties decade to explore another musical angle infused with as cinematic/literary throwbacks to sci-fi as humanly possible. Only this time instead of the greaser proto-punk blues tomfoolery of AM we have Alex Asimov lounging in the Moonraker jazzbar, leaning on the blackback of a grand piano played by rotating henchmen as he drinks a dirtied martini in one hand and reads from a rough draft of Foundation in other—he has become Bond villain and I can’t help but chuckle for him.
Review: Y

Beach House – 7
Producer: Victoria Legrand, Alex Scally, Peter Kember
Label: Sub Pop
Genre: Dream Pop, Neo-Psychedelia
Quick Impressions: Ouf, Beach House, you may have done it this time. You may have actually made an album somewhat compelling. It took you a while, it really did and my word, Ms. Legrand and Mr. Scally, you two must have read the definition of “Diminishing Returns” by now, I hope, surely? But now we have a little more beat, a little more urgency in those guitars, a little more pain in those pianos. Oh well, allow myself one Beach House record to like, I will.
Review: N

the grow fangs – An Every Night Mystery
Producer: the grow fangs
Label: Already Dead
Genre: Psychedelic Folk, Experimental Instrumental
Quick Impressions: Think someone played D&D and every possible RPG in existence. This wants to be one of those tavern albums. Mood albums. Ok albums. But this one filters it through lo-fi production to mimick every RPG from Zelda to Dragon Age and give a homely if slightly one note theme.
Review: N

Holy Daughters – Holy Daughters
Label: Jurassic Pop
Genre: Surf Rock Punk, Indie Rock
Quick Impressions: Forget Surf Rock. This is Surf Punk, every bit the meaner cousin to La Luz’s more erotic Floating Features. And as an Oregonian, I feel only right singing “Fuck California” with a Bangsian resolve that the Melvins failed to summon in “Stop Moving to Florida.” And if a band can beat the Melvins at their own game, then shit, I want to listen to that.
Review: Y

Idris Ackamoor & The Pyramids – An Angel Fell
Producer: Malcolm Catto
Label: Strut
Genre: Spiritual Jazz, Afro-Jazz
Quick Impressions: Somewhere in between sixties John Coltrane, peak Fela and a dose of Sun Ra zaniness, this record is a reminder of the insane fusion that jazz has endured since the mid-sixties. “Warrior Dance” even forgoes dabbling in rock and instead just jumps right into the plasmic pool. It’s still methodical, no berserkgang here, but man do Idris Ackamoor and his Pyramids complete the job deftly and as smoothly as spiritual jazz fusion can do.
Review: Y

Kody Nielson (Unknown Mortal Orchastra) – Birthday Suite
Producer: Kody Nielson
Label: Flying Nun
Genre: Progressive Electronic, Neo-Psychedelia
Quick Impressions: Well, damn, these Nielson brothers are artists to pay attention to. Birthday Suite is something of a response to the Side B pet projects of Ruban Nielson. It calls itself a suite, but it’s chopped up the Birthday celebrations into 12 candles. They all burn bright, they all feel just right and they mood and wig better than any other neo-psych record released these past two months (oh and you best believe that includes Sex & Food).
Review: Y

Las Rosas- Shadow By Your Side
Producer: Kevin McMahon
Label: Greenway
Genre: Indie Rock, Psychedelic Rock (THEY LIE)
Quick Impressions: I was promised psychedelic rock. What I got was generic indie rock, with hints of psychedelia around the edges and in the middle. What a freakin’ tease.
Review: N

La Luz – Floating Features
Producer: Dan Auerbach
Label: Hardly Art
Genre: Surf Rock, Indie Rock
Quick Impressions: In the world of tradeoffs, I cannot possibly imagine Ty Segall for Dan Auerbach every going poorly. And it doesn’t—las senoritas de La Luz plod with bluesy lumber, dreamy vocals and the traditional garage guitars while the keyboards have faded to the back of the mix until required. It’s Warpaint with some less gloom, more sun but still just as dreamy and that’s just groovy blues, baby, but sometimes happiness should be a little more dangerous, ya dig?
Review: N

Neighbor Lady – Maybe Later
Label: Friendship Fever
Genre: Psychedelic Rock, Alt-Country
Quick Impressions: Clocking in at 29 minutes, this record could have used some more time to expand on the psychedelic tendencies, because when they do, ho mama, this here album’ll take you down to the river and bathe ye in the waters of the Lord. Good muses, excellent blend of country-rock and folk letter that smells like lavender and burns flashes of magenta. This is a perfect combination of Fleetwood Mac, First Aid Kit vocals and wavy Grateful Dead licks with a little more bite.
Review: Y

Our Solar System – Origins
Producer: Our Solar System
Label: Beyond Beyond is Beyond
Genre: Psychedelic Rock
Quick Impressions: Well, man, once you hear a droning psychedelic band, you kinda heard em all. Their shtick? That steely, no wave drone-like rhythm, in theory, capturing people within a Faraday cage. But what good’s a steelbox if the players don’t have the balls to shock something every once in a while? Well, at least the Swedes Our Solar System can summon up a current on occasion “En Bit Av Det Tredje Klotet” (try and pronounce that!) and “Monte Verita,” I just wish it all didn’t sound so damn clinical. A study of Bong without all the fun that can come with it.
Review: N

Sarah Louise – Deeper Woods
Producer: Jason Meagher
Label: Thrill Jockey
Genre: Psychedelic Folk, Gothic Folk
Quick Impressions: Goth has a multitude of reasons why it has matured and evolved with more grace than Emo. Be it a recognition of emotional complexity, entropic processes and (actually) a rejection of out-and-out nihilism, the real musical kicker is that good Goth is good psychedelic is good Goth. Good Goth ™ just takes psychedelia from a swampier malaise and adds a little dungeons and dragons to it, a little crypt keeper element, without need for the stacks of skulls and bones and the S&M leather. Oh, there will be bats, believe me, but that’s just because them rats with wings like the dark and Good Goth ™ wants to take to that darkness like the Beatles took to the sitar. Sarah Louise’s new LP explores its own title. A rustic, gothic, psychedelic exploration of the deep woods, the natural decay. It’s a Loma-esque effort without the drum machine and synth drama. Florence + The Machine without the Gregorian theatrics. Warpaint, but acoustic.
Review: Y

TV Girl – Death of a Party Girl
Producer: Jason Wyman, Brad Petering
Label: Self Released
Genre: Electropop, Neo-Psychedelia
Quick Impressions: TV Girl, notoriously independent, doesn’t compose itself of the grandest musicians nor do they particularly paint sympathetic pictures of themselves or their subjects. Really if a Nice Guy ™ needed music, TV Girl would be the band for him. But then again, maybe he’s too Nice ™ to understand the themes of being an absolute prick for pussy that have run roughshod through all of TV Girl’s records. Instead I just ask myself: can you stand a frontman who sings over the pastiche of 50’s and 80’s jingletunes in such deadpan irony of beleaguered fuckboi that it’s almost grating? Then you might be able to enjoy this record.
Review: M

Yours Are The Only Ears – Knock Hard
Producer: Susannah Cutler
Label: Team Love
Genre: Folk, Dreampop
Quick Impressions: I like to call it the Carole King-with-a-guitar angle. It’s something Laura Marling does very well, although her voice recalls a much duskier Joni Mitchell-PJ Harvey mix (Wow, I find myself in agreement with Pitchfork, is this bad?). And it’s something New Yorker Susannah Cutler does very well too, although she finds herself crossing the dreaminess of Victoria Legrand with the bubbliness of Carly Simon in her voice as her electro-folk sensibilities tie her in the present rather than the past. So really, nothing at all like Carole King—but then again does she really have to be?
Review: M

Releases For Last Week


Artificial Pleasure – The Bitter End

Label: East City Rockers

Genre: New Wave

Benjamin Jaffe – Oh, Wild Ocean of Love

Label: Diamond Family

Genre: Indie Rock

Brandy Zdan – Secretear

Label: Tallest Man

Genre: Indie Rock

Connections – Foreign Affairs

Label: Trouble In Mind

Genre: Indie Rock

The Drew Thomson Foundation – Stay EP

Label: Dine Alone

Genre: Indie Rock

Fascinator – Water Sign

Label: Spinning Top

Genre: Indie Rock

Gold Connections – Popular Fiction

Label: EggHunt

Genre: Indie Rock

Illuminati Hotties – Kiss Yr Frenemies

Label: Tiny Engines

Genre: Indie Rock, ‘Tenderpunk’

Jeff Ament (of Pearl Jam) – Heaven/Hell

Label: Moneywrench

Genre: Alternative Rock

John Mellencamp – Plain Spoken: From The Chicago Theatre

Label: Eagle Rock

Genre: Classic Rock

Kandle – Damned If I Do EP

Label: Sleepless Records

Genre: Pop Indie, Blues rock

Little Junior – Hi

Label: Royal Mountain

Genre: Pop Punk

Luke Haines – I Sometimes Dream of Glue

Label: Cherry Red

Genre: Pop Art Rock

The Magic Numbers – Outsiders

Label: Black Candy

Genre: Indie Rock

Marmalakes – Please Don’t Stop

Label: Austin Town Hall

Genre: Indie Rock

Red Hare – Little Acts of Destruction

Label: Dischord

Genre: Punk

Samara Lubelski – Flickers At The Station 

Label: Drawing Room

Genre: Pop Psych

The Sea and Cake – Any Day

Label: Thrill Jockey

Genre: Pop Indie, Jazz Rock

Sevendust – All I See Is War

Label: Rise

Genre: Hard Rock, Alternative Metal

Sieve – Three Secrets (EP)

Label: Fire Talk

Genre: Indie Rock

Strung Out – Black Out The Sky EP

Label: Fat Wreck Chords

Genre: Punk

Weathered Statues – Borderlands

Label: Svart

Genre: Punk, Darkwave

world’s greatest dad – Get Well Soon

Label: Self-Released

Genre: Punk, Emo



Ill – We Are Ill

Label: Foliage

Genre: Post-Punk

Aborted Fetus – The Ancient Spirits Of Decay

Label: Comatose

Genre: Death Metal

The Body – I Have Fought Against It, But I Can’t Any Longer.

Label: Thrill Jockey

Genre: Death Industrial, Drone Metal

Hit Bargain – Potential Maximizer

Label: Buzz

Genre: Post-Punk

Ice Baths – Ice Baths

Label : Blank Editions

Genre: Post-Punk

Leviathan – Unfailing Fall Into Naught (Compilation)

Label: Ascension Monuments

Genre: Black Metal

Lawn – Blood on the Tracks

Label: Forged Artifacts

Genre: Post-Punk

Silver Dapple – Moody Boots 

Label: Self-Released

Genre: Post-Punk, Noise Rock

Slow Mass – On Watch

Label: LandLand

Genre: Post-Hardcore

Soft Kill – Savior

Label: Profound Lore

Genre: Post-Punk, Coldwave

TENTS – Stars on the GPS Sky

Label: Numavi

Genre: Post-Punk, No Wave



Aidan Moffat & RM Hubbert – Here Lies the Body

Label: Rock Action

Genre: Indie Folk

Ashley Campbell – The Lonely One

Label: Whistle Stop

Genre: Country

Brent Cobb – Providence Canyon

Label: Low Country Sound/Elektra

Genre: Country

Carla Bozulich – Quiter

Label: Constellation

Genre: Experimental, Singer/Songwriter

Jerry Garcia – Before the Dead (Compilation)

Label: Round Records

Genre: Folk, Blues

Jess Williamson – Cosmic Wink

Label: Mexican Summer

Genre: Indie Folk

Kassin – Relax

Label: LAB 344

Genre: World

Loreena McKennitt – Lost Souls

Label: Quinlan Road, Universal

Genre: Celtic New Age, Celtic Folk Music

Mark Kozelek (Sun Kil Moon) – Mark Kozelek

Label: Caldo Verde

Genre: Singer/Songwriter, Indie Folk

Mason Jennings – Songs From When We Met

Label: Self-Released

Genre: Singer/Songwriter

Nina Kinert – Romantic

Label: Ninkina, V2

Genre: Singer/Songwriter

Ry Cooder – The Prodigal Son

Label: Fantasy

Genre: Americana

Sarah Mary Chadwick – Sugar Still Melts In The Rain

Label: Omnian

Genre: Alternative Folk

Sean McGowan – Son of the Smith

Label: Xtra Mile

Genre: Singer/Songwriter

Stanley Brinks – Peanuts

Label: Fika

Genre: Indie Rock, Folk

Tom Waits – The Heart of Saturday Night (Vinyl Reissue)

Label: Anti-

Genre: Folk, Jazz

Tom Waits – Nighthawks at the Diner (Vinyl Reissue)

Label: Anti-

Genre: Folk, Jazz



Marian Hill – Unusual

Label: Republic

Genre: Alternative R&B, Electropop



Ornette Coleman – The Atlantic Years (Compilation)

Label: Rhino

Genre: Free Jazz



Aïsha Devi – DNA Feelings

Label: Houndstooth

Genre: Post-Industrial, UK Bass

Arma Del Amor – Onna Bugeisha 

Label: Self-Released

Genre: Pop Indie, Electronic

Boys – Rest in Peace

Label: Pnk Slm

Genre: lo-fi, Alternative

Charlie Puth – Voicenotes

Label: Warner Bros.

Genre: Dance-Pop, Contemporary R&B

Dustin Wong + Takako Minekawa + Good Willsmith – Exit Future Heart

Label: Umor Rex

Genre: Experimental

Good Morning – Prize // Reward

Label: Self Released

Genre: lo-fi, Pop Indie

GOSH!- Odyssey

Label: Nicey

Genre: Electropop

My Brightest Diamond – Champagne (EP)

Label: Asthmatic Kitty

Genre: Electronic

Mount Kimbie – Love What Survives Remixes Part 2

Label: Warp

Genre: Tech House, Techno

The New Division – Fader EP

Label: Division 87

Genre: Synthpop

Simian Mobile Disco – Murmurations

Label: Wichita

Genre: Electronic, Tech House

Terra Pines – Terra Pines 

Label: 829072 Records DK

Genre: Shoegaze

UZ – The Rebirth

Label: Quality Goods

Genre: Trap

Wajatta (Reggie Watts & John Tejada) – Casual High Technology

Label: Comedy Dynamics

Genre: Tech House

Will DiMaggio – At Ease

Label: Future Times

Genre: Deep House

Rap & Hip-Hop:

The Doppelgangaz – AAAAGGGHH

Label: Groggy Pack Entertainment

Genre: Hip hop

Haleek Maul – In Permanence EP

Label: Lex

Genre: Experimental Hip Hop

Junglepussy – JP3

Label: Self Released

Genre: East Coast Hip Hop

Playboi Carti – Die Lit

Label: AWGE, Interscope

Genre: Trap Rap, Cloud Rap

Ski Mask The Slump God – Beware The Book Of Eli Mixtape

Label: Republic

Genre: Trap Rap, Southern Hip Hop

Tee Grizzley – Activated

Label: 300

Genre: Trap Rap, Gangsta Rap

Lucas – Fall in Love EP

Label: Hush Hush

Genre: Trap, Instrumental Hip Hop

Wale – Self Promotion EP

Label: MMG

Genre: Pop Rap



Jean-Michel Blais – Dans ma main

Label: Arts &Crafts

Genre: Modern Classical

David Grubbs & Taku Unami – Failed Celestial Creatures

Label: Empty Editions

Genre: Free Improvisation



One thought on “Release Date Buffet: 5/11/2018

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About BenJamsToo

A young dude with an old soul from Portland, OR but currently teaching and writing in rural France. A lover of rock n roll since his mother first spun The Police’s “Roxanne,” he’s also dabbler in soul, funk, jazz, blues, electronic and hip-hop. Perhaps it’s easier to list what he doesn’t like; most gangster rap, country-western and modern metal disagrees with his stomach. Spends all day wondering what Ruban Nielson eats for breakfast, why Danger Mouse hasn't made a through and through GOOD record since St. Elsewhere, if Kamasi Washington is the Kanye West of jazz and just what the hell people hear in mumble rap. Between those things he writes for Atwood and his own blog, Come here for the nice clean thoughts; go there for the ramblings of an insane man.