Monday , April 22 2024
A loaded lineup for Glen's final NAR column.

New Album Releases 06/02/09: Elvis Costello, Neil Young, Dave Matthews Band, Iggy Pop, CSN, Eels, Big James & The Chicago Playboys

We've got an absolutely loaded lineup of New Album Releases for your ears this week — including no less than Elvis Costello, Dave Matthews, and that Neil Young box — and I don't want to waste another minute before getting to it. Josh Hathaway will also be joining us shortly to talk about the new one from Big James and the Chicago Playboys.

However, I have an announcement I need to make. This will be my final New Album Releases column for Blogcritics.

Personally, I'm not going anywhere, and will in fact continue here at BC as both a writer and an editor. But I am moving on from the New Album Releases desk to ply my particular talents elsewhere on the site. I also have no idea who, if anyone, will be taking over this column. If I knew any more than that I'd tell you, but for now that's all the info I have.

Now with that said, we've got a lot to cover this week. So let's get to it.

It's little surprise that Elvis Costello recruited T-Bone Burnett to produce the stripped-down country sounds on his latest album, Secret, Profane & Sugarcane.

It's not Costello's first time working with Burnett, who also produced his albums King Of America (which had many of the same elements found here) and Spike (which didn't). Costello's very first stab at making this type of album actually goes all the way back to 1981's Almost Blue, an album of covers by people like George Jones, which is mostly best left forgotten. On Secret, Profane & Sugarcane, Costello fares much better.

The first volume of Neil Young's ten plus years in the making Archives series of boxed sets also finally sees the light of day this week. Neil's fans have had to endure tease after tease about this release over the years, only to have the artist pull it back for more of his seemingly endless tweaking. So this one definitely wins this week's "hell freezes over" award. Neil Young Archives, Vol. 1: 1963-1972 is available in CD, DVD, and Blu-ray versions.

Speaking of Neil Young, his bandmates in Crosby Stills & Nash have assembled their own retrospective set of Demos, which was reviewed by BC's own Stuart A Hamilton earlier this week. Dave Matthews Band is back in jam-band form on Big Whiskey & the GrooGrux King, their first album since the death of saxophonist LeRoi Moore.

Iggy Pop's first album following the death of Ron Asheton, and the on-hold status of the Stooges is the surprisingly tame-sounding Preliminaires (review by BC's Richard Marcus is here). Mark Oliver Everett and the Eels are back with Hombre Lobo: 12 Songs of Desire.

Finally, The 40th anniversary edition of Woodstock brings a new and upgraded version of the historical festival on both CD and DVD editions, including new footage and previously unseen performances from the likes of The Who and Jefferson Airplane.

At this time, I'd like to thank all of my co-conspirators (too numerous to name-check here) for making NAR the great column it was, and hopefully will still remain. Speaking of which (and yes he gets a name-check for showing up this week), here's Josh Hathaway…

Josh Hathaway's Fanboy Pick: Big James and the Chicago Playboys – Right Here Right Now

Big James & The Playboys are releasing their first album for Blind Pig Records this week, but these guys are no rookies. Big James Montgomery has played with legends like Little Milton, Albert King, and Buddy Guy before taking on a leading role with the Chicago Playboys. The Playboys' mix of blues, R&B, soul, and funk has been compared to the James Brown's backing bands throughout the years and has also played with impressive company: Buddy Guy, Eric Clapton, and Otis Rush.

Right Here Right Now is 11 tracks, 47 minutes, and endless grooves.

Here are all of this week's new album releases courtesy of All Music Guide:

Elvis Costello
Secret, Profane & Sugarcane
Hear Music
Contemporary Singer/Songwriter, Adult Alternative Pop/Rock, Country-Folk

Dave Matthews Band
Big Whiskey & the GrooGrux King
Jam Bands, American Trad Rock, Adult Alternative Pop/Rock

Iggy Pop
Contemporary Singer/Songwriter, Adult Alternative Pop/Rock

Let the Dominoes Fall
Punk-Pop, Punk Revival, Ska-Punk

Neil Young
Neil Young Archives, Vol. 1: 1963-1972
Warner Bros.
Album Rock, Folk-Rock, Hard Rock, Singer/Songwriter, Country-Rock, Pop/Rock

Piotr Anderszewski
Piotr Anderszewski at Carnegie Hall
Virgin Classics
Baroque, Romantic & Modern Keyboard Music

Ryan Bingham/The Dead Horses
Roadhouse Sun
Lost Highway
Americana, Country-Folk

Blank Dogs
Under and Under
In The Red
Indie Rock, Lo-Fi

Jeff Buckley
Grace: Live Around the World
Sony Legacy
Adult Alternative Pop/Rock, Alternative Pop/Rock

Marshall Crenshaw
Adult Alternative Pop/Rock, Contemporary Singer/Songwriter

Crosby, Stills & Nash
Pop/Rock, Folk-Rock, Singer/Songwriter

Da Zoo
Da' Zoo
Sony Music Latin
Pop, Latin Pop, Dance-Pop

Ronnie Earl
Living in the Light
Stony Plain
Modern Electric Blues, Contemporary Blues, Soul-Blues, Electric Blues

Hombre Lobo: 12 Songs of Desire
Adult Alternative Pop/Rock, Alternative Pop/Rock

Walter Egan
Wild Exhibitions
Pop/Rock, AM Pop, Soft Rock

…In Shallow Seas We Sail
Tooth & Nail
Screamo, Alternative Pop/Rock

Franz Ferdinand
New Wave/Post-Punk Revival, Indie Rock, Alternative Pop/Rock

Hoots and Hellmouth
The Holy Open Secret
Mad Dragon
Alternative Country-Rock, Roots Rock, Country-Rock, Jam Bands, Indie Pop

Freddie Hubbard
Without a Song: Live in Europe 1969
Blue Note
Hard Bop, Post-Bop

J Dilla
Jay Stay Paid
Nature Sounds
Left-Field Hip-Hop, Midwest Rap, Underground Rap

Eva Leon
Turina: Violin Sonatas Nos. 1 & 2; El poema de una sanluqueña
Modern Music for Violin & Piano

Julie London
Sings the Choicest of Cole Porter
Traditional Pop, Torch Songs, Cool

The Meatmen
Cover the Earth
Meat King
Hardcore Punk, Punk

Kent Nagano
Bruckner: Symphony No. 4 [Hybrid SACD]
Post-Romantic Symphony

Paolo Nutini
Sunny Side Up
Contemporary Singer/Songwriter

Iain Quinn
Variations on America
Modern & Centemporary Organ Music

Steve Reich
Reich: Four Organs; Phase Patterns
Contemporary Chamber Music

Willy Porter
How to Rob a Bank
Adult Alternative Pop/Rock, Soft Rock

Louis Prima
Hey Boy! Hey Girl!/Swingin' Pretty
Traditional Pop, Jump Blues, Dixieland, Early R&B

Jerry Reed
When You're Hot 1967-1983
Country-Pop, Nashville Sound/Countrypolitan

Duke Robillard
Stomp! The Blues Tonight
Stony Plain
Jazz Blues, Modern Electric Blues

Perry Robinson
Two Voices in the Desert
Contemporary Jazz

Sad Day for Puppets
Unknown Colors
Indie Pop, Dream Pop, Noise Pop

Frank Sinatra
Classic Sinatra II
Vocal Jazz, Traditional Pop, Standards, Swing, Ballads, Vocal Pop, Big Band

The Sounds
Crossing the Rubicon
Original Signal
Indie Rock, New Wave/Post-Punk Revival

Taking Back Sunday
New Again
Warner Bros.
Emo, Post-Hardcore

Rap-Rock, Rap-Metal, Funk Metal, Alternative Pop/Rock

Unladylike Radio
Def Jam
Southern Rap, Hardcore Rap, Pop-Rap

Various Artists
Music from the Original Soundtrack and More: Woodstock
American Trad Rock, Guitar Virtuoso, Boogie Rock, Folk-Rock, Psychedelic, Political Folk, Hard Rock, Blues-Rock, Rock & Roll, Funk

About Glen Boyd

Glen Boyd is the author of Neil Young FAQ, released in May 2012 by Backbeat Books/Hal Leonard Publishing. He is a former BC Music Editor and current contributor, whose work has also appeared in SPIN, Ultimate Classic Rock, The Rocket, The Source and other publications. You can read more of Glen's work at the official Neil Young FAQ site. Follow Glen on Twitter and on Facebook.

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