With over 5,000 performances spanning four decades, 20 million records sold worldwide, and inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, CHEAP TRICK is undoubtedly one of the most influential classic rock groups of the past 50 years. The band was formed in 1974 and while it has evolved throughout the years, CHEAP TRICK has continued to reach mainstream and critical success. Hits such as “I Want You To Want Me,” “Dream Police,” and “Surrender” have cemented the group as one of America’s top rock ‘n’ roll bands of all time.
"Listening to the story of Canadian duo cleopatrick is a bit like hearing the plot of the best, most righteously validating coming-of-age film never made. Two friends meet aged four in Hicksville, Nowheretown (real name: Cobourg, Ontario, population 19,000), grow up completely inseparable, form a band and, against numerous obstacles, blossom into a genuine, global underground sensation. There are heroes and villains, highs and lows and, crucially, some of the most poetic plot twists that could seem almost too perfect, were they not completely true.
Take the story of 2017 breakthrough track ‘hometown’ for example. “It’s one of the craziest, most ironic things that’s ever happened,” begins vocalist and guitarist Luke Gruntz. “I was going to college because I was too scared to put all my chips in the band pile, and that’s what ‘hometown’ is about: it’s a song about feeling like we’re doing all this stuff and we’re working so hard and we’re just never going to be heard. It’s literally a song about people probably never hearing our songs. And then by some act of the universe, that song ended up unlocking all the doors for us.”
Today, cleopatrick has logged 77 million streams and counting - all from an increasingly dedicated fanbase who’ve found the duo, completed by drummer Ian Fraser, their own way: no major label, no big budget, just two best pals knuckling down, cementing a unique sonic alchemy and filling a space of honest, empathetic yet undeniably heavy-hitting rock music that they’d been searching for themselves for years. Between multiple sold out tours in Canada, the US and the UK/EU and appearances at Lollapalooza, Austin City Limits and Reading/Leeds, the pair have been crafting BUMMER: a debut album that sees cleopatrick harness all the magic they’ve been brewing over their two-decade friendship and funnel it into a record that aims to reinvigorate the rock landscape from the ground up. Taking the ethos of their New Rock Mafia collective - a group of friends and fellow bands, united in making a more inclusive, equality-driven space in rock music - and imbuing it with the sonic ambition and ferocity of a record designed to be played hard and loud, it’s an album about two friends, who’ve been with each other since the formative first steps that adorn ‘BUMMER’’s heartwarming cover image and made something that’s a testament to the power of sticking to your guns."
Night Beats, the Texas-born brainchild of Danny Lee Blackwell, are releasing their fifth full-length album ‘Outlaw R&B’ on May 7th via Fuzz Club. Made during the height of the California wildfires (where Danny now resides), rioting in the streets and a nation in lockdown, ‘Outlaw R&B’ deals in a psychedelic and R&B-infused garage-rock sound that’s “bathed in post-apocalyptic bliss”. With four albums now behind them – their self-titled 2011 debut, 2013’s ‘Sonic Bloom’, 2016’s ‘Who Sold My Generation’ and 2019’s ‘Myth of A Man’ – Night Beats have garnered a reputation as one of the finest purveyors of contemporary rock’n’roll hedonism around.
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On June 15th 2014, Jason Isbell reunited onstage with former Drive By Truckers bandmates Patterson Hood and Mike Cooley for a special round-style night in Muscle Shoals Music. The setlist includes acoustic versions of Isbell-era Truckers gems including “Heathens,” “Decoration Day” and “Zip City” as well as post-Isbell Truckers tracks like “Space City” and solo Isbell faves such as “Cover Me Up.” The set opens and closes with a pair of classic Hood-sung numbers, 2004′s “Tornadoes” and 2001′s “Let There Be Rock.”
Mumps were not your ordinary punk rock band. For starters, they had a genuine TV star as their front-man. Lance Loud and his family were chronicled in PBS’ 1973 docuseries, An American Family, widely considered the first “reality TV show,” set in Santa Barbara, CA. Along with his friend, keyboardist Kristian Hoffman, they formed Loud, who even played on The Dick Cavett Show, when Pat Loud (Lance’s mother) insisted on it, or she wouldn’t appear on the show to promote An American Family. The show was also important, as Lance revealed his homosexuality on it – making him a television pioneer in a second way.
Driven by Lance’s fascination of Andy Warhol, the band moved to NYC, were one of the first bands to play at the legendary CBGB, and became regulars at Max’s Kansas City. Warhol became a fan, calling them one of the greatest bands of their time. They even opened for Van Halen at the Whisky A Go-Go, in 1977!
While their live prowess was never a question, Mumps only released two singles before disbanding, 1977’s “I Like To Be Clean” on BOMP!, and “Rock & Roll This, Rock & Roll That” on Perfect Records the following year. For the first time, a true Mumps “album” exists with the release of Rock & Roll This, Rock & Roll That: Best Case Scenario, You’ve Got Mumps, combining the 5 tracks from those singles with 9 tracks recorded between 1974-1979 compiled by the band’s Hoffman and drummer Paul Rutner. The CD & Digital program adds an addition 9 tracks, including 2 previously unissued tracks from the pre-Mumps band, Loud, which included future Patti Smith Group member Jay Dee Daugherty on drums.
Packaging contains photos, ephemera, and the Mumps story told via contributions from Hoffman, Rutner, bassist Joe Katz, and Pat Loud. So rocket back to the 1970s and experience your new favorite old band: Mumps!
Nowhere Generation’s unabashedly outspoken 11 songs explore the tight bonds and the distances we share, the struggles of everyday life, our personal failings and triumphs, as well as how the social and economic decks can be stacked against us. But Nowhere Generation also hints at the reclamation of ourselves, a call to resurrect who we are at our core, who we want to be and what we want to do with our lives, despite the rampant weaponizing of our culture. As lyricist Tim McIlrath wrote on “The Numbers”: …these cold nights are almost unbearable, but purpose keeps us warm.
Nowhere Generation was recorded at The Blasting Room in Fort Collins, Colorado under the tutelage of Jason Livermore, Andrew Berlin, Chris Beeble and long-time producer/engineer Bill Stevenson (Black Flag, The Descendents) who has worked with the band on nearly all of their acclaimed releases since their sophomore effort, 2003’s Revolutions Per Minute, and is often described as Rise Against’s fifth member.
Rock and Roll Hall of Famer and ZZ Top frontman, Billy F Gibbons wants to take you on a desert trip. Hardware is Billy's third release as a solo artist. He compiled a group of a-listers including Matt Sorum (dr), Austin Hanks (gtr) and headed into the California desert to record in Pioneertown. Hardware features the guitar prowess and vocals that have made Billy a legend but it also shows Billy stretching his music landscape past the place where the road ends.
After a fantastic 2020 leading up to the release of their long-awaited 3rd album We Will Always Love You, The Avalanches are set to commemorate the 20th Anniversary of their groundbreaking debut album Since I Left You, with a deluxe edition release featuring new content. 2 CD, original 18 track album + 21 track exclusive mix. Exclusive mix includes 7 unreleased tracks + their own remixes of The Manic Street Preachers, Badly Drawn Boy, Belle & Sebastian + Franz Ferdinand. New album art.
The album is his first truly solo album: just Thile, his voice, and his mandolin, on new recordings of six original songs and three covers, all of which contextualize and banter with his ideas about spirituality. Recorded in a converted upstate New York church during the pandemic, Laysongs’ centerpiece is the three-part “Salt (in the Wounds) of the Earth,” which was inspired by C.S. Lewis’sThe Screwtape Letters. The album also features a song Thile wrote about Dionysus; a performance of the fourth movement of Béla Bartók’sSonata for Solo Violin; “God Is Alive, Magic Is Afoot” based on Buffy Sainte-Marie’s adaptation of a Leonard Cohen poem; a cover of bluegrass legend Hazel Dickens’ “Won’t You Come and Sing for Me;” and an original instrumental loosely modeled after the Prelude from J.S. Bach’s Partita for Solo Violin in E Major
Celebrated roots rock band Dispatch release their anticipated 8th studio album Break Our Fall out May 28 on Bomber Records/AWAL Recordings. Marking the band's eighth studio release, the songs on this record speak not only to Chadwick Stokes' and Brad Corrigan's personal evolution, but to human nature itself, charting a course from denial and resistance to growth and acceptance through deep introspection and empathetic character studies. For Stokes and Corrigan, the only constant these past few years has been change - marriage, birth, death, departure - add to that an exceedingly tense political climate, long-overdue reckonings on racial justice/gender equality and a runaway global pandemic and you've got Break Our Fall, an album that enriches Dispatch's distinguished legacy, on which the depth and breadth of the band's stunning songwriting is displayed in full force.
Throughout their career, Blackberry Smoke has embodied Georgia’s rich musical legacy, honoring the people, places and sounds of their home state. As the band celebrates their 20th anniversary this year, their reverence for Georgia has only deepened.
On their latest album, You Hear Georgia, the follow-up to 2018’s critically acclaimed Find a Light, Blackberry Smoke is further celebrating these roots with 10 new songs that feel like Georgia, accented by the addition of Grammy-winning producer and fellow Georgia-native, Dave Cobb (Jason Isbell, Brandi Carlile). “Dave and I had spoken for the last few years about making a record,” Starr says. “Finally, it worked out, our schedule and his schedule, and we said, yes—let’s make a record.”
Blackberry Smoke worked quickly, spending just 10 days at Nashville’s famed RCA Studio A, Cobb’s home base since 2016. The band recorded live on the floor, giving You Hear Georgia a crisp, outgoing feel. Like other Blackberry Smoke efforts, this album leans into well-crafted Southern rock driven by jagged guitar riffs and rich instrumentation, as the band layers on rollicking piano (“Live It Down”), funky grooves (“Hey Delilah”), and introspective acoustic sounds (the stripped-down, folk-leaning “Old Enough to Know”).
The title song, “You Hear Georgia” features a narrator who’s underestimated because of outward appearances and misguided stereotypes, which is a theme of Starr’s lyrics this time around, particularly as it relates to the band’s Southern roots. “Lyrically, the song is about the South being misunderstood. It’s obviously a rough and tumble world, and there’s a lot of bad people. But there’s a lot of good people too. It started with the idea of how people might have a preconceived opinion of you because of a thick Southern accent, then expanded into the reality of how some people just seem to have such a hard time getting along, thanks to political or religious views, or simply what part of the country you come from.”
Many of You Hear Georgia’s songs describe characters that are restless and prone to seeking out a change of scenery, in hopes of finding a place where they belong. Against cinematic backdrops with vivid details, it’s easy to empathize with these protagonists as they share pearls of wisdom (“Don’t ever trust a grown man with a nickname”) and exhibit deep self-awareness (“Anywhere’s better than staying here, with the ghosts running thru his mind”) along the way.
You Hear Georgia reinforces that the band members have come so far together because they also can rely on one another for support and creative direction, no matter what the circumstances.
Moby’s eclectic career has cast him in the roles of electronic dance music pioneer, singer and songwriter, producer, activist, and restaurateur, but for his latest venture he presents his music in a whole new light.
Together with Deutsche Grammophon, he is releasing an album of his best known tracks in stunning new arrangements for classical instruments – featuring Moby himself and a stellar lineup of collaborators from across the musical spectrum.
Always a daring and imaginative thinker, Moby’s first classical collaboration happened in October 2018, when he performed a selection of his songs alongside the LA Phil and conductor and friend Gustavo Dudamel. This was the inspiration for the current project, which features not only full orchestral versions but new electronic arrangements, as well as sophisticated smaller-scale acoustic interpretations.
The 14-track album includes classic Moby songs like “Porcelain”, “Why Does My Heart”, and “Extreme Ways” in innovative new versions, featuring eye-catching collaborations including both Jim James (My Morning Jacket) and Víkingur Ólafsson on “Porcelain”; Gregory Porter and Amythyst Kiah on “Natural Blues”; and Kris Kristofferson as well as original vocalist Mark Lanegan on “The Lonely Night”. The album concludes with a cover of David Bowie’s “Heroes”.
King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard return with ‘L.W.’, their seventeenth studio album and the third volume in the band’s explorations into microtonal tunings. A companion piece to its 2020 predecessor, ‘K.G.’, as well as a stand-alone work of art in its own right, L.W. displays a collision of musical worlds. After a decade of frenzied productivity and a recent inability to tour, the band was able to “reset [their] brains” and embark upon a search for “the notes between the notes”. Out via KGLW
THE ICONIC GARY NUMAN is set to release his brand new album Intruder on May 21st. Intruder is Numan’s 18th solo studio album and follows 2017’s Savage: Songs From A Broken World, which became his highest charting set in almost forty years when it debuted at #2 on the Official Albums Chart. That commercial success was complemented with wide-reaching critical acclaim from Mojo, The Quietus, Rolling Stone and more. Whereas Savage depicted earth as a barren wasteland in which humanity and culture had been largely crushed by the effects of global warming, Intruder presents a fresh but complementary narrative. It’s a philosophical examination of a potential future apocalypse: the planet can only survive by purging its inhabitants. Numan explains: “‘Intruder’ looks at climate change from the planet’s point of view. If Earth could speak, and feel things the way we do, what would it say? How would it feel? The songs, for the most part, attempt to be that voice, or at least try to express what I believe the earth must feel at the moment. The planet sees us as its children now grown into callous selfishness, with a total disregard for it’s well being. It feels betrayed, hurt and ravaged. Disillusioned and heartbroken it is now fighting back. Essentially, it considers human kind to be a virus attacking the planet. Climate change is the undeniable sign of the Earth saying enough is enough, and finally doing what it needs to do to get rid of us, and explaining why it feels it has to do it.”
The album from Nashville's finest evolves from years of experimental compositions written by bandleader Kurt Wagner on the piano (a first for the lauded song-writer). It's described by the artist as almost a post-modern twist on the American Songbook/ballad genre. Think of it almost like the cosmic cousin to the likes of early Randy Newman, Tom Waits, Gershwin, etc.
This also marks the first-time use of a new back-up group that includes James McNew (Yo La Tengo), Ryan Olson (Gayngs), Andrew Broder, techno producer Twit One, Eric Slick (Dr. Dog) and others. This switch-up revisits the original Lambchop motto that “anyone could be part of lambchop (so long as they behaved themselves)". This one was recorded at Battle Tapes in Nashville with Jeremy Ferguson & album art was once again created by Elise Tyler.
With over a million albums already sold, Nashville-based, Oregon-born singer songwriter and producer Mat Kearney returns with his new album January Flower. January Flower sees Kearney in his rawest form, distilling the songwriting process and rediscovering the joy of making music. Physical available May 21st, 2021 via Tomorrow Music/Caroline.
In the midst of a global pandemic, John Hiatt walked into Historic RCA Studio B and opened up a lifetime full of leftover feelings. A half-century ago, Hiatt lived in a ratty, $15-a-week room on Nashville’s 16th Avenue, less than a mile away from the RCA and Columbia studios that were the heartbeat of what had come to be known as “Music Row.” In the ensuing 50 years, he went from a scuffling young buck to a celebrated grand master of song.
With Leftover Feelings, Hiatt teamed up with multi-grammy winning artist and producer, Jerry Douglas and his band, The Jerry Douglas Band. There’s no drummer, yet these grooves are deep and true. And while the up-tempo songs are, as ever, filled with delightful internal rhyme and sly aggression, the Jerry Douglas Band’s empathetic musicianship nudges Hiatt to performances that are startlingly vulnerable.
In life, leftover feelings can remain unresolved, no matter how often explored. Explicated in a place of history, a place of comfort. A sacred place, if you believe the documentation of human expression to be a holy thing. Here then, with this album, there is a meeting of bruised and triumphant American giants. Here are Hiatt and Douglas, creating the meant-to-be: Love songs and road songs, sly songs and hurt songs. Their songs, and now our songs. Leftover feelings that edify and sustain.
The forthcoming album from The Steel Woods, All of Your Stones, took on a new dimension back in January when the band’s founding guitarist and principal creative force, Jason “Rowdy” Cope, passed away peacefully in his sleep at age 42.
The new album is the third offering from one of the fastest rising bands in the worlds of independent country and Southern rock. Since releasing their debut Straw In The Wind album in 2017, The Steel Woods have staked their claim as worthy successors of Southern rock icons Lynyrd Skynyrd, with a dynamic live show and a songwriting verve that draws inspiration from country icons like Willie Nelson and Waylon Jennings.
When The Steel Woods entered the studio to record All Of Your Stones, smack in the middle of a global pandemic, it’s clear they had something to prove, if only to themselves. Cope had wrestled with undiagnosed PTSD and its multitude of symptoms after the release of sophomore album Old News. Wes Bayliss, the band’s singer and co-songwriter, wasn’t always sure what the future held for the group, which is rounded out by Johnny Stanton (bass) and Isaac Senty (drums).
Reflecting on Rowdy’s vision and passion for the band, Stanley says the last thing Jason would have wanted was for the music to stop. Bayliss concurs. “We were always going to do the things you do when you put out a record. Now, there is simply a little more reason.” Indeed there is more reason.
With the release of All Of Your Stones, The Steel Woods now have the responsibility to keep the fire burning. After all, it’s what Rowdy would want.
The recording session felt like a breath of fresh air and the communion of talented musicians produced more songs than expected. Downing left the session energized and continued to record and trade demo’s with Tourville. Downing and Tourville decided that there were enough ideas to make an album. There were not going to be any rules and nothing would be discarded. All notes and lyrics would be considered.
Start It Over is the result of that creative effort. An album where each song was crafted with a different idea in mind. Some of the songs are more nostalgic than others and some were just written for good ol fashion fun. There is a romantic quality in each song. One song might help someone get through a hard time while one song might contribute to a good time. One song might bring up memories of a better time or just get you far enough down the road to start over.
On May 14, The Black Keys release their tenth studio album, Delta Kream, via Nonesuch Records. The record celebrates the band’s roots, featuring eleven Mississippi hill country blues standards that they have loved since they were teenagers, before they were a band, including songs by R. L. Burnside and Junior Kimbrough, among others. Dan Auerbach and Patrick Carney recorded Delta Kream at Auerbach’s Easy Eye Sound studio in Nashville; they were joined by musicians Kenny Brown and Eric Deaton, long-time members of the bands of blues legends including R. L. Burnside and Junior Kimbrough. The album takes its name from William Eggleston’s iconic Mississippi photograph that is on its cover.
Daddy’s Home, the sixth album from St. Vincent, is the latest facet of an ever-evolving artist regarded by many as the most consistently innovative and intriguing presence in modern music. The album was pro-duced by Annie Clark and Jack Antonoff, recorded by Laura Sisk, mixed by Cian Riordan, and mastered by Chris Gehringer. The music was performed by Annie, Jack, Cian, Thomas, Evan Smith, Sam KS, Greg Leisz, Daniel Hart, Michael Leonhard, Lynne Fiddmont and Kenya Hathaway.
"Daddy's Home collects stories of being down and out in downtown NYC. Last night's heels on the morning train. Glamour that's been up for three days straight.”—St. Vincent