Tuesday , April 16 2024
Call me Nostradamus, and watch me pull a rabbit out of my ass...

New Album Releases 08/05/08: Hawthorne Heights, Randy Newman, Conor Oberst, Sarah McLachlan, Sic F**ks, Rev. Peyton’s Big Damn Band & More

Last night, during one of those online "chat" conversations people have over their computers these days, I commented to one of our regular NAR contributors that I had a feeling it was going to be such a slow new release week, that I'd be writing a "pulling a rabbit out of my ass" sort of column.

Well, call me Nostradamus if today's list didn't prove me right.

So long story short, it's pretty slim pickings this week. The AMG list is in fact so short, that neither of our picks (from Mark Saleski and El Bicho) even show up there. No matter. With a week like this one, we'll take whatever we can get. Anyway, with that said, let's get to pulling some rabbits, shall we?

Fragile Future is the first new album from Hawthorne Heights since the death of guitarist Casey Calvert. It also follows the band's legal problems with label Victory Records, which have apparently been resolved since that is exactly who ended up releasing the new album from the punky-popsters.

Harps and Angels is singer-songwriter Randy Newman's first new record in ten years, and is reportedly a stripped-down sounding set recalling some of his earlier work in the seventies. These days, Newman is best known for his work on film soundtracks, but I wouldn't be surprised if his ever sarcastic wit doesn't turn up another "Short People" here.

Conor Oberst reportedly went to Mexico to record his first solo album minus his usual Bright Eyes moniker (aren't those records basically solo efforts as well?). Here he is joined by a loose-knit group of musicians dubbed the Mystic Valley Band, and the album is said to mine much the same alterna-folk-pop territory of his Bright Eyes releases.

Finally, for anyone who misses those all-female Lilith Fair shows from the nineties, Miss Lilith herself, Sarah McLachlan, gets the deluxe treatment on the Legacy Edition of Fumbling Towards Ecstasy. Expect rare tracks along with all the usual bells and whistles here. With that, I'll now turn the wheel over to Sir Saleski and El Bicho…

Saleski's Choice: Sic Fucks – Live 10-13-06 Bowery Collection

I don't what what it is (or was) about the New York punk scene. I mean, I never went there. Never set foot in CBGB. None of it. What I did do was read a ton of yammering about these bands (thank you Lester), which of course led up to the purchase of a pile of some of the most annoying records ever made (Just ask my parents!)

Anyhow, the hallowed epicenter of this noise explosion was indeed CBGB. It was a filthy place, run by the late mastermind Hilly Krystal, who made no rules and just let the punks have their way. For this, we had the flowering (or was it 'rotting') of The Ramones, Talking Heads, Blondie, The Dictators, Patti Smith, Television, Dead Boys, and on it goes.

On the week leading up to the club's final night (closed down by Patti Smith), several shows were held. On October 13, 2006 it was The Bullys, The Dictators, and Sic Fucks. I bet it smelled bad…and sounded bad. I bet it was great.

El Bicho's Masked Music Pick: Rev. Peyton's Big Damn Band – The Whole Fam Damnily

"You don't know where you going if you don't know where you been" is an aphorism that anyone can and should apply to their life and interests. In regards to music, so many artists and fans are so busy looking for the next new thing that they overlook many gems that resemble the past.

Rev. Peyton's Big Damn Band second album continues their exploration of country blues. "We come from the same tradition that Charley Patton and Furry Lewis came from." Peyton says." They sang about what they were going through in their time and we're doing the same thing in ours." Their subjects are pulled from their lives and range from missing home cooking in "Mama's Fried Potatoes" to the arrest of a family member in "Your Cousin's on COPS." Besides, you can't go wrong with a band that has a regular washboard player. Give them a listen at their MySpace page.

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

Hawthorne Heights
Fragile Future
Emo, Punk-Pop

Randy Newman
Harps and Angels
Pop/Rock, Singer/Songwriter, Pop

Conor Oberst
Conor Oberst
Alternative Singer/Songwriter, Adult Alternative Pop/Rock, Indie Rock

Keith Anderson
Contemporary Country

Hoyt Axton
Soft Rock, Singer/Songwriter, Country-Rock

The Laurie Berkner Band
Rocketship Run
Two Tomatoes
Sing-Along, Educational

Lewis Black
Comedy Central
Political Comedy, Standup Comedy

Art Blakey & Giants of Jazz
Live at the Monterey Jazz Festival 1972
Monterey Jazz Fest
Hard Bop

Blue October
Argue with a Tree…
Alternative Pop/Rock, Post-Grunge, Adult Alternative Pop/Rock

Jim Boggia
Misadventures in Stereo
Adult Alternative Pop/Rock, Pop Underground

Michael Borgstede
Handel: Suite de pieces pour le Clavecin
Brilliant Classics
Baroque Keyboard Music

Brazilian Girls
New York City
Downtempo, Downbeat, Club/Dance, Adult Alternative Pop/Rock

Dave Brubeck
50 Years of Dave Brubeck: Live at the Monterey Jazz Festival 1958-2007
Monterey Jazz Fest
Cool, West Coast Jazz

Carla Bruni
Comme Si de Rien N'Etait
Contemporary Singer/Songwriter, French Pop

City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra
The Six Star Wars Films: New Recordings of the Classic Scores
Silva Screen
Contemporary Film Music

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

The Faint
New Wave/Post-Punk Revival, Indie Rock

Lefty Frizzell
Steppin' Out: Gonna Shake This Shack Tonight
Bear Family
Honky Tonk, Traditional Country

Mike Gordon
The Green Sparrow
Adult Alternative Pop/Rock

Shirley Horn
Live at the Monterey Jazz Festival 1994
Monterey Jazz Fest
Vocal Jazz, Traditional Pop, Standards, Ballads

My Fair, My Dark EP
Indie Pop, Americana, Contemporary Folk

Jamey Johnson
That Lonesome Song
Contemporary Country

A Hustlaz Story
Contemporary R&B, Urban

Lil' Dap
Underground Rap, East Coast Rap

Lessons in Love
The Inc/Universal Motown

The Lord Dog Bird
The Lord Dog Bird
Indie Rock, Lo-Fi, Alternative Singer/Songwriter

Mars Black
Stay Black
Team Love
Midwest Rap, Hip-Hop

Shannon McArdle
Summer of the Whore
Indie Rock

Jimmy McCracklin
The Mercury Recordings
Bear Family
West Coast Blues, Piano Blues, Soul-Blues, R&B

Sarah McLachlan
Fumbling Towards Ecstasy [CD/DVD] [Bonus CD]
Sony Legacy
Adult Alternative Pop/Rock, Folk-Rock, Alternative Pop/Rock, Pop/Rock, Adult Contemporary

Norma Jean
The Anti Mother
Tooth & Nail
Post-Hardcore, Alternative Metal

Paul Oakenfold
Warner Music TV
Progressive Trance, Trance, House, Club/Dance, Acid House

Preteen Weaponry
Experimental Rock, Noise-Rock, Post-Rock/Experimental

Thomas Sanderling
Albéric Magnard: Complete Symphonies
Brilliant Classics
Romantic Music for Orchestra

Otto Sauter
The Trumpet in Salzburg
Brilliant Classics
Music for Trumpet and Orchestra

Andras Schiff
Bartók: Piano Concertos Nos. 1-3
Warner Classics
Modern Works for Piano and Orchestra

Original Soundtrack
Pineapple Express
Roots Reggae, Film Music, Gangsta Rap, Soundtracks, Pop/Rock, Rock & Roll, Hip-Hop

Original Soundtrack
The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, Vol. 2 [Original Soundtrack]
Warner Bros.
Film Music, Soundtracks, Original Score

Original Soundtrack
Tropic Thunder [Original Soundtrack]
Album Rock, Film Music, Soundtracks, Hard Rock, Blues-Rock, Rock & Roll, Hip-Hop, R&B

Buck Owens
Act Naturally: The Buck Owens Recordings 1953-1964
Bear Family
Bakersfield Sound, Honky Tonk, Traditional Country

Oxford Collapse
Sub Pop
Indie Rock

Elvis Presley
The Complete '68 Comeback Special: 40th Anniversary Edition
Pop/Rock, Rock & Roll, Pop

The Prodigy
Experience: Expanded
Rave, Club/Dance

Carrie Rodriguez
She Ain't Me
Americana, Alternative Folk, Country-Folk, Alternative Country-Rock

Dave Stewart
The Dave Stewart Songbook, Vol. 1
Pop/Rock, Prog-Rock/Art Rock

Cal Tjader
The Best of Cal Tjader: Live at the Monterey Jazz Festival 1958-1980
Monterey Jazz Fest
Afro-Cuban Jazz, West Coast Jazz, Latin Jazz, Cool, Mood Music, Brazilian Jazz

David Vandervelde
Waiting for the Sunrise
Secretly Canadian
American Trad Rock, Alternative Singer/Songwriter

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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