MUSIC MILLENNIUM - OUTSIDE THE HEARD - MARCH 2014

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The Allman Brothers Band
Play All Night: Live At The Beacon Theater 1992
Legacy
 
For nearly 25 years, traveling to New York’s Beacon Theatre to see The Allman Brothers Band play a stretch of high-spirited live shows has become a rite of passage for fans old and new. What began as a daring ten-night run at the acclaimed venue is now a symbiotic relationship between a band, a venue and a devoted fan base, the likes of which are virtually unprecedented in rock and roll history. Play All Night: Live At The Beacon Theatre 1992 is a new two-disc set showcasing The Allman Brothers Band’s very first time playing such an extended run at the Beacon – and with a new line-up: Founding members Gregg Allman (vocals/keyboards), Dickey Betts (guitar), Butch Trucks and Jaimoe (drums) were joined by a trio of talented up-and-comers: Allen Woody on bass, Marc Quinones on percussion, and Warren Haynes on guitar. The band would tape two of their 10 shows at the theater in March 1992. Amazingly, material from these electrifying shows has seen virtually no release - until now.
 
Casket Girls
True Love Kills The Fairy Tale
Graveface

 
So many pieces of Savannah, GA three-piece The Casket Girls seemed to happen by accident. From their beginning when electronic sound-shaper Ryan Graveface (Graveface Records, Dreamend, Black Moth Super Rainbow) found sisters Phaedra and Elsa Greene under a tree in one of Savannah's many squares, playing Autoharp and singing bizarre songs, to the night they composed their sophomore album, True Love Kills the Fairy Tale. Under circumstances that fall somewhere between séance and dream state, nearly everything about The Casket Girls seems to have been inspired by some kind of spooky happenstance. The Casket Girls have filled True Love Kills the Fairy Tale with lilting, almost whimsical melodies about chemical hazes and love gone sour. It sounds like a f****d up Shangri-Las, to which Graveface added a bevy of grinding, multi-dimensional psych-rock synths that will be familiar to anyone with a BMSR record in their collection. Is it a lucid dream? An acid trip? Who knows… But it’s definitely a work of weird genius.
Citizen
Youth
Run For Cover

 
Slowly growing and changing since they first met as Midwestern high-schoolers in 2009, Citizen have emerged today as one of underground alternative rock’s most promising bands. From the first note of album opener ‘Roam The Room’, Youth’s massive, towering rock songs bleed emotion all the way through until the tape stops on closer ‘Drawn Out’. Citizen have called on the ghosts of Brand New’s The Devil And God Are Raging Inside Of Me and early Nirvana, creating an engaging blend of aggression and ambiance. Beautifully harmonized half-shouted vocals along with fuzzy, reverbed-out leads lend weight to the album’s mood while also making it impossibly catchy. With speaker-blowing, guitar-driven, head-down melancholy, Youth calls upon the young fury in all of us – gathering rosebuds and scorching the earth.
 
Billy Hart Quartet
One is the Other
ECM Records

 
The second ECM album by the Billy Hart Quartet is a major musical statement, not to mention one of the most outstanding jazz albums of 2014. The group’s reach -- already broad on 2012’s widely-acclaimed All Our Reasons -- is more expansive on One Is The Other. Strong compositions by leader-drummer Hart, tenorist Mark Turner and pianist Ethan Iverson reflect upon a wide swathe of jazz’s history; distinguished by vivid and imaginative solos and wonderful interplay. BHQ’s basic premise -- that this should be a band in which the vastly-experienced Billy Hart gets to play everything he wants -- has led to a sense of almost unlimited possibility for the quartet as a whole. There is freedom and joy in this music… And tenderness, too; especially on the quartet’s breathtaking interpretation of “Some Enchanted Evening.” Recorded in New York in 2013. Produced by Manfred Eicher.
Runaway Dorothy
The Wait
Rock Ridge Music
 
Runaway Dorothy’s sensibility is both rustic and refined, mining folk, country, and alt-country with a songs-first restraint as to leave ample space for the group’s captivating storyteller lyrics, mesmerizingly melancholy vocals, and achingly beautiful harmonies. New album, The Wait, is a staggering achievement for Runaway Dorothy, and particularly Dave Parnell as a master songwriter. Lyrically, The Wait is both personal and mythical. “Half the album is a story I made up, the other half is about a relationship that just wasn’t going to work,” Dave confides. Runaway Dorothy self-produced The Wait, going for a lean approach with the production treatment, delicately adding only essential flourishes. The result is elemental yet unforgettable. Runaway Dorothy count Roseanne Cash, Adam Duritz, Rob Thomas, and Ryan Adams as fans… So consider yourself in good company.
 
Grace and Tony
November
Rock Ridge Music

 
She played bluegrass. He played punk. When Grace Schultz and Tony White met, they fell in love and the music just followed after. Grace & Tony experimented with an unlikely blend of genres by mixing punk, folk, bluegrass, and Texas swing, to create something new. What resulted was a blend of music for those searching for what’s beyond the norm: “Punkgrass” was born. A lover of English literature and old-style murder mysteries, Grace’s influence on the album is stamped like an antique wax seal; it’s no accident that the album listen is like an epic musical storybook. November is 11 haunting and elegant chapters featuring heroic protagonists in a variety of settings taking on evil mastermind kidnappers, electromagnetic bombs, schizophrenia, and, perhaps the trickiest of all, their own minds. Those looking for that breathtaking happy ending won’t be disappointed either — as the stories come to a close, and an imaginary “The End” is heard, Grace & Tony live happily ever after.
UME
Monuments
Dangerbird Records

 
This Austin, TX trio, Ume, has grown a following the old-fashioned way: Hitting the road in a broken van and ecstatically playing every show as if it were their last. The unrelenting and impassioned force that has made Ume an acclaimed live band has finally been captured on a beautiful and massive new record called Monuments. Recorded with Grammy-winning producer Adam Kasper (Queens of the Stone Age, Cat Power, Foo Fighters, Nirvana) at Robert Lang Studios and Studio X in Seattle, WA, Monuments is Ume’s most colossal sounding recording yet. The guitars are heavier, the rhythms more powerful, the vocals and songwriting bolder and more intimate. “We didn’t hold anything back with Monuments,” says the Ume’s guitarist and vocalist Lauren Larson. “For me, each song is a sort of commemoration of a different emotion or experience. One song might make you want to bang your head and the next make you want to hug someone you love. I think it’s these wildly different textures that make us a band and make us all human.”
 
Dark Flowers
Radioland
Liaison Music

 
The Dark Flowers would balk at being called a supergroup, but with the likes of Pete Murphy, Jim Kerr, Dot Allison, Shelly Poole and Helicopter Girl all involved the starting cast certainly has the weight to deserve that term. Add in rising London singer-songwriter Catherine AD and Norway’s critically acclaimed Kate Havnevik and you have a vocal cast of some power. With producer and songwriter Paul Statham (Dido, Pete Murphy, Kylie) pulling the musical strings it is little wonder that the album under this collaborative name should deliver twelve tracks that beguile with their dark take on country music, filled with gravitas and drama. Inspired by Sam Shepard’s Motel Chronicles, Brian Eno’s Another Green World, Bon Iver’s For Emma, Forever Ago, and the 1970’s soundtrack to The Hired Hand, Radioland is unlike any country album you’ve ever heard. Perfect for long drives wherein you imagine being a lead character in True Detective.
Bryce Dessner & Jonny Greenwood
Dessner: St. Carolyn By the Sea; Greenwood: Suite From 'There Will Be Blood'
DG CD/Deutsche Grammophon
 
Never before have classical and rock converged in such an organic, compelling and sensual way as they do in the three short orchestral works written by and featuring The National guitarist Bryce Dessner on his new release St. Carolyn by the Sea, and performed in conjunction with the Copenhagen Phil and conducted by Andree de Ridder. Dessner presents three pieces of modern classical music, written from the perspective of a rock musician who is keenly aware of the raw emotional impact music any music can have on an audience. He draws on elements from Baroque and folk music, late Romanticism and modernism, minimalist music and the blues, as well as referencing the work of such legendary figures as John Fahey, La Monte Young, Bela Bartok, Glenn Branca, Benjamin Britten, Morton Feldman, Philip Glass and Steve Reich. This album also showcases a suite drawn from Radiohead guitarist Jonny Greenwood’s soundtrack for There Will Be Blood – a piece that is heavily influenced by Krzysztof Penderecki. You need this.
 
Charlie Simpson
Young Pilgrim
Liaison

 
Young Pilgrim is the debut solo album by Charlie Simpson – the vocalist from British Alt-Rock band Fightstar and boy band Busted. Melancholic but shot through with the sunshine of the summer in which it was recorded, Young Pilgrim is a laid-back, multi-faceted stunner, that should bring Charlie a host of new fans, as well as surprising his old ones. Hints of The National make themselves known in Charlie's baritone vocal in “Parachutes” while the vibrant `Hold on' also sees Charlie experimenting with his voice. ''There's literally five vocals. I wanted to build chords out of them. There's a Fightstar track called `You and I' that we do it on, but I wanted to take it further and have the whole melody of the verse moving in chord formation.'' Perhaps The Beebz should take notice… You definitely should.
Kongos
Lunatic
Epic

 
Kongos is a rock band of four brothers (Johnny, Jesse, Dylan and Danny Kongos), sons of South African/British singer-songwriter John Kongos -- best known for his two international hits "He's Gonna Step On You Again" and "Tokoloshe Man." They grew up in London and South Africa and are now based in Phoenix, Arizona. All four brothers were raised around musicians, recording studios and diverse cultures exposing them to a wide variety of musical influences. All learning piano at a young age, they later naturally drifted to other instruments, and Johnny and Jesse studied jazz at Arizona State University. Completely self-contained, they write, produce, engineer and mix/master their music as well as direct, shoot and edit all their own music videos. Lunatic is a dense, throbbing, unique and occasionally frightening world of sound – imagine Paul Simon’s Graceland was cast in the image of Massive Attack. Intrigued? You should be.
 
Hurray For the Riff Raff
Small Town Heroes
ATO

 
Hurray for the Riff Raff is Alynda lee Segarra, a 26-year-old Puerto Rican from the Bronx. After leaving home at an early age to travel the country, she eventually settled in New Orleans where she began to perform and record with a revolving cast of musicians. Their last album Look Out Mama (2012) gained critical acclaim from the likes of Mojo, No Depression, American Songwriter and NPR who named it one of the best albums of 2012. Many of the songs on her new album, Small Town Heroes, reflect Segarra’s reverence for New Orleans. She bears witness to a wave of violence that struck the St. Roch neighborhood in the soulful “St. Roch Blues;” yearns for a night at BJ’s Bar in the Bywater in “Crash on the Highway;” and sings of her home in the Lower Ninth Ward on “End of the Line,” calling it a “love song to that whole area and crew of people.” With this forthcoming collection of well-crafted, timeless songs, Small Tow Heroes, Segarra is poised to be a powerful voice in 2014.
Yellow Ostrich Cosmos
Cosmos
Barsuk
 
Borrowing its title from Sagan's 1980 PBS series, Cosmos expands Yellow Ostrich's intensely guitar-driven alt-rock with dreamy electronic arrangements to mirror the mood of singer/guitarist Alex Schaaf and drummer/percussionist Michael Tapper’s retreats away from the everyday world. While the album embodies a sense of both wonder and isolation, Yellow Ostrich's refined melodies and dense yet delicate sonic textures make Cosmos as powerfully intimate as it is dynamic. "Something I really like about the Carl Sagan way of thinking is how it's a very un-ironic and sincere amazement at how the world works," says Schaaf, who began Yellow Ostrich as a solo project at age 21. "One of the main things I was thinking about in writing this album is how to take that viewpoint and bring it into real-world life." Cosmos captures that uneasy tension by merging raw guitar riffs, lush atmospherics, brain-bending electro effects, sweetly ethereal harmonies, and earnest but unsettling lyrics.
 
Max Raabe/ Palast Orchester
Golden Age
DG CD/ Deutsche Grammophon

 
As the title suggests, Golden Age is a collection of classics from the Great American Songbook. Drawing from the era between World War I and II, with titles like “These Foolish Things,” “Singin’ In the Rain,” “Dream a Little Dream” and “Cheek to Cheek”, Max Raabe & Palast Orchester mesmerizes a new generation with timeless tunes by Cole Porter, Noel Coward and others and celebrates an era when Josephine Baker danced dressed only a banana skirt, dance halls were thriving, every restaurant had an orchestra and the Charleston became the sensation. Always one to shake things up, Raabe also lends old twists to a few modern classics, namely “Sex Bomb” and Britney Spears’ “Oops!... I Did It Again.”
Les Claypool's Duo De Twang
Four Foot Shack
ATO

 
How “deconstructed” can a group get? How about just one vocal, one bass, one guitar, and a basic beat supplied by stomping on a mini-tambourine-doohickey? That’s exactly what everyone’s favorite storyteller/narrator, Les Claypool, is incorporating in his new band, Duo de Twang. While Les is still pulling double duty with the Primus lads, he has also found the time to unite with his old buddy, Bryan Kehoe, who fans will recognize from several past Claypool projects. But unlike Primus, DDT focuses more on the Americana / rootsy side of things – as heard throughout the band’s debut recording, Four Foot Shack. “I was asked a year before last to put together a project for the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival in San Francisco,” recalls Les about DDT’s formation. “It kind of just turned into [Bryan] and I sitting there in front of the campfire, playing hillbilly versions of my songs and some other people’s songs.” The result mixes traditional tunes, popular covers (“Stayin’ Alive”), and readings of Primus classics “Jerry Was A Race Car Driver”). It’s a hootenanny!
  
moremusic

The Coalition of Independent Music Stores (CIMS) is a group of some of the best independent music stores in America. CIMS was founded in 1995; its current membership is made up of 29 accounts that handle 47 stores in 21 states. Many of the accounts have been recognized by the music industry and their local communities for their outstanding dedication to customer service and developing artist support.

Each member is bound by its shared love of music, a reputation for great selection and customer service in its community, yet each CIMS account is as unique as the market it represents. Most importantly, CIMS member stores continually seek to challenge the jaded, color-by-numbers advertising and marketing of other retailers.

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