Lotus - Lotus CD - Lotus' new self-titled album moves in a decidedly more electronic direction than their last two releases (2008's Hammerstrike, 2009's Oil on Glass/Feather on Wood). Analog synthesizers, manipulated sounds, dub effects and heavy bass are balanced by horns and string arrangements in addition to Lotus's standard guitar/bass/drums instrumentation. Grooves range from slinky funk and gritty hall-time on the first half of the album to the beautiful and expansive closing track Orchids. Although hits and pieces of vocals are used throughout, the only song to feature singing is The Surf. And while it may he the closest thing to a pop song the band has ever released, the melodic guitar hooks and ecstatic synth are pure Lotus.
Similar to their music, the recording process for the album looked in multiple directions at once. It began using traditional recording methods tracking live to analog tape, but shifted to modern techniques for editing and mixing to expand into a musical space filled with uniquely crafted sounds. The band road tested and tweaked these tracks for the better part of two years. The result is an album worthy of the self-titled status - the band's singular sound and spirit runs through every track.
Primus - Green Naugahyde CD - Influential alternative rock icons Primus are back with their first album of brand new music since 1999's Antipap. The new album is entitled Green Naugahyde. Primus will be hitting the road in support of the new album - headlining their own shows, festivals (Hangout, Bonnaroo, All Good Festival) and playing legendary venues such as Red Rocks Amphitheatre on August 3rd with old friends The Flaming Lips.
Primus formed in the late '80s in Northern California, releasing their first album, Suck On This, in 1989. They Signed to Caroline Records and released the now-classic Frizzle Fry in 1990. As part of the alternative rock explosion of the '90s, the band signed to Interscope and gave the world some of the biggest records of the decade, including Sailing The Seas Of Cheese, Pork Soda, Tales From The Punchbowl and The Brown Album, had several Billboard top 10 debuts, garnered a Grammy nomination and wrote the internationally loved and enduring theme song for 'South Park'.
Umphrey's McGee - Death By Stereo CD - Chicago-based Umphrey's McGee returns this fall with a new studio album, Death By Stereo, available on 9/13 via ATO Records. Over the past 13 years, the group has built a rabid fan base through endless touring and more than 120 shows a year. They have released 11 albums, nearly every live show for 6+ years and sold more than 1.5 million digital tracks. Death By Stereo is the much-anticipated followup album to their critically-acclaimed 2009 studio release Mantis, which was praised in top outlets like Rolling Stone, The New York Times and The Washington Post. Mantis included a groundbreaking pre-order campaign, which sold over 8000 units in the first week and debuted at #62 on the Billboard chart.
Death By Stereo is a hybrid of what makes Umphrey's McGee so appealing to a wide spectrum of music fans. Filled with a healthy combination of focused, hard-hitting rock songs & head bobbing, groove-driven tracks, the record has something for everybody. The new album features a smattering of road-tested fan favorites as well as some of the slickest, unreleased compositions the band has released to date.
Umphrey's McGee's constantly evolving sound channels a wide spectrum of influences while still preselVing their distinct voice through crafty songwriting. With a massive repertoire of originals and note-perlect covers, their live shows are like flipping through the presets on your radio dial. Their A.DD. approach to ''progressive improvisation'' utilizes a set of Zappa-inspired hand signals allowing them to orchestrate their melodic creations on the fly.
Mofro - Brighter Days CD/DVD - Brighter Days is Grey's first-ever live CD/DVD. The two-disc set includes a full-length movie and a long-awaited live album. Directed by filmmaker/musician Spookie Daly (whose work has been aired on MTV Networks, Much Music and Fuse), the film intersperses riveting concert footage with the stunning beauty of Grey's north Florida home, the inspiration for so much of his music. The film also follows Grey and company into the studio and features band interviews along with insightful commentary from Grey and others, recalling the format of classic "rockumentaries." 78-minutes of stellar performances from the film are captured on the accompanying CD.
Shot on January 22, 2011 at the Variety Playhouse in Atlanta, Georgia in stunning HD and boasting 5.1 surround sound, Brighter Days finds JJ (vocals, guitar and harmonica) and his band -- Andrew Trube on lap steel and electric guitar, Anthony Farrell on organ and piano, Art Edmaiston on saxophone, Dennis Marion on trumpet, Todd Smallie on bass and Anthony Cole on drums -- giving everything they have. Singing and telling stories with preacher-like conviction, JJ breaks down the wall between the audience and the performer.
Trombone Shorty - For True CD - 2011 album from the Grammy nominee Troy Andrews AKA Trombone Shorty. Produced by Galactic's Ben ElIman, For True, features Andrews' band, Orleans Avenue, as well as a string of legendary performers with whom he recently shared the stage, including Jeff Beck, Kid Rock, Lenny Kravitz, Ledisi, Warren Haynes, Ivan and Cyril Neville, The Rebirth Brass Band and more. Troy wrote or co-wrote all 14 tracks on the new album including co-writes with Ledisi, Kid Rock, the legendary Lamont Dozier and others.
JAZZ FEST LIVE 2011 CDs!
All professionally recorded at the 2011 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival
Ivan Neville's Dumpstaphunk - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
Ellis Marsalis - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
Galactic - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
George Porter Jr & the Runnin' Pardners - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
Honey Island Swamp Band - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
Hot 8 Brass Band - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
The Iguanas - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
James Andrews - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
Jumpin' Johnny Sansone - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
Joe Krown Trio - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
Luther Kent & Trickbag - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
Shannon McNally - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
Monk Boudreaux & the Golden Eagles Mardi Gras Indians - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
John Mooney & Bluesiana - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
mynameisjohnmichael - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
The Neville Brothers - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 (2 CDs)
The Radiators - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 (2 CDs)
Johnny Sketch & the Dirty Notes - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
The Subdudes - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
Tommy Malone & Mystik Drone - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
Walter "Wolfman' Washington & the Roadmasters - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
Big Daddy Love - Let It Grow CD - Essentially organic in both disposition and composition, Big Daddy Love is a five-piece band with a unique and natural blend of rock, roots and grass that they call 'Appalachian Rock.' Above the mix, the lead vocals and acoustic guitar accompaniment of their principal songwriter, Daniel Justin Smith, command the listener's attention and call for the harmonies that arise in response. Twin leads of Stratocaster riffs and soaring Allman-esque slide guitar on the one hand, and electric and acoustic 5-string Scruggs / Fleck style banjo on the other-- like a typical Southern rock line-up, just replacing the second guitar with the banjo-- punctuate and emphasize what Smith delivers. These contrasting voices are anchored by a rhythm section that is equally at home in a groove or driving the bus with country, swing, funk or straight ahead rock. Live, with the lights on and the volume up, Big Daddy Love stretches the music out with top notch picking and ripping, delivering a stompin' good time rich with authentic Carolina soul. On Let It Grow, Big Daddy Love's signature Appalachian Rock sound is further refined in a collection of songs that seamlessly pick up where their critically acclaimed debut To The Mountain left off. With their "on the sleeve," sincere sentiments and first rate musicianship, Big Daddy Love may well be the antidote to the ongoing erosion of the roots sound, despite being-- in many ways-- a blue collar rock band with Appalachian flavor.
Three Legged Fox - Always Anyway CD - Named as one of The Pier's "Most Anticipated Albums of 2011" this self-produced album will unveil 12 brand new tracks, and is two years in the making, showcasing the band's unique brand of reggae mixed with alternative rock sounds.
The band shares, "We knew from the word 'go' that we wanted to go really big on this one. We wanted big sounds, accessible songs, and an overall modern approach. We felt as though we had already done the raw, stripped down thing twice; and we had done the whole reggae horns, arrangement type of thing with the last album. It was within us to understand that we're not a traditional American reggae band; we're an alternative rock, reggae band. Ultimately, realizing what we are, and what we aren't made it much easier and a lot of fun making this new album."
With over 350 shows played nationally under their belts, Three Legged Fox has shared the stage with notable artists such as Rebelution, SOJA, The Black Seeds, Barrington Levy, and The Wailers, to name a few. Following the album release, Three Legged Fox plans on touring to promote the album in major cities nationwide.
Cope - See CD - Cope started as a family band with two brothers and a cousin from a musical family out of Akron, Ohio. More than a decade later the Stadelman brothers along with multi-instrumentalist Juanjamon and Virginia raised drummer and vocalist Dave Gerulat have evolved into a family full of friends, fans, dancers and music-heads across the U.S., joined together by fun loving good times and some serious psychedelic southern-fried funk-rockin jazz-reggae electro-grass music.
Gaining notoriety as the "Undisputed Jam Kings of Tampa Bay" (Mark Warren - Skipper's Smokehouse Talent Agency), great bands all over the country are signing up to open for the jam-quartet at the famous Skipper's Smokehouse in their home base of Tampa, FL. With the release of their latest CD titled "See", Cope has been spreading and reaching outward from the far south to perform with and for many bands and fans in an attempt to reach musical nirvana and promote the fellowship of musicians and music enthusiasts everywhere.
"Check out that little cutie with a nice behind you better shake it girl, shake it good, cause Cope's comin to ya neighborhood." -Shake Anything (from "See" CD)
Theivery Corporation - Live at the 9:30 Club DVD - In January of 2010, Thievery Corporation thrilled fans when they sold out 5 consecutive nights at local DC venue, 9:30 Club. The shows were filmed with vintage anamorphic lenses that created flaws and subtle characteristics (including creating flares as the light hits the lens), and have an otherworldly and abstract visual quality. The result is an intimate account of the band and a dazzling recording of one of the world's most unique musical stage-shows.
With over 1.2 million albums sold in the U.S. across 15 years of making music, Thievery Corporation released their sixth studio album titled Culture of Fear earlier this summer. The album has been perched at #1 on the CMJ Electronic Music Charts for the past two months. The Washington Post called the album "solid," while Paste Magazine said Culture of Fear was a "true cultural melting pot of sounds." Thievery Corporation continues to blend musical styles in their trademark fashion; space-rock jams lead to hip-hop inspired grooves, airy down-temp trances and dub-reggae infused vibes throughout the journey.
Over the years, Thievery Corporation has become known for the carnival-esque atmosphere of their live shows, during which they bring out a 15-member live band of musicians and vocalists. The group has sold out shows at such famed venues as the Hollywood Bowl, London's 02 Shepherds Bush Empire, and the Theatro Vrahon Melina Merkouri in Athens, Greece, among many others.
JAZZ FEST LIVE 2011 CDs!
All professionally recorded at the 2011 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival
Anders Osborne, John Fohl, and Johnny Sansone - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
Arlo Guthrie - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 (2 CDs)- A very special performance from folk legend, Arlo Guthrie. Of course, his witty remarks and amusing anecdotes remain in tact on this two-disc show. This set was mixed by Arlo's son (and keyboardist for the band), Abe Guthrie.
Allen Toussaint - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
Alvin Youngblood Hart's Muscle Theory - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
Bonerama - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
John Boutte - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
Big Sam's Funky Nation - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
Cowboy Mouth - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
Kristin Diable - Live at Jazz Fest 2011 CD
Sept 15-18 Pink Moon Festival - Rock Camp, WV
Sept 23-25 H Blast! - Reidsville NC
*Sept 22-24 Blackwater - Live Oak, FL
Oct 6-9 Shakori Hills Grassroots Festival - Pittsboro, NC
* Oct 20-23 Magnolia Festival - Live Oak, FL
*Look for the Home Grown Music Booth at this event!
Video of the Week:
Lotus - Live at Red Rocks
Thanks for reading! Treat yourself to some good music this week.