Arlo Parks - Collapsed In Sunbeams - Transgressive
Twenty-year-old, London-based musician and poet Arlo Parks, has been very steadily climbing the ranks as an artist to watch since the release of her confessional debut single "Cola" in 2018. Arlo has received praise from artists such as Billie Eilish, Wyclef Jean, Clairo, Florence Welsh and Phoebe Bridgers during the past year while growing her fan base exponentially. Arlo's debut album "is a series of vignettes and intimate portraits surrounding my adolescence and the people that shaped it. It is rooted in storytelling and nostalgia - I want it to feel both universal and hyper specific." On a personal level, Parks struggled with her identity growing up; a self- confessed tom-boy who was super sensitive and "uncool," she says it was like "I'm a black kid who can't dance for shit, listens to emo music and currently has a crush on some girl in my Spanish class." By the time she reached 17, she shaved her head, figured out she was bisexual and produced/wrote an album's worth of material.
Lucero - When You Found Me - Liberty & Lament
Like the great river that flows through Memphis, the music of Lucero keeps rolling on, twisting and turning through the years, the same dark and brooding steadiness always at work. Since forming in late the ‘90s, this group of Memphis road-dogs has mixed heartfelt lyrics with the sounds of early rock and roll, classic punk, country-folk, and deep-fried Southern soul. It’s a sound that stands on the pillars of American music, born more of feeling than technique, delivered night after night to legions of fans in dive bars and theaters, and on stages as august as Red Rocks Amphitheater and the Ryman. In short, it’s music that is built to last, impervious to trends. For their tenth studio album, When You Found Me, the band continues its natural evolution, this time tapping into a more atmospheric, widescreen vision (one that wouldn’t seem out of place on a Reagan-era FM dial) while still staying tethered to its roots. “I wanted a very classic rock sound for this album,” says songwriter and frontman Ben Nichols. “I wanted it to sound like stuff I heard on the radio growing up. I didn’t want to make a retro record at all, but I did want to reference some of those sounds and tones and moods. I think we struck a nice balance between nostalgia and something that still sounds like contemporary Lucero.”
ALSO OUT THIS WEEKFor more information on these and other releases out this week, check out our New Releases charts by week section.
Baio - Dead Hand Control
Steven Wilson - THE FUTURE BITES
Mike Krol - Mike Krol Is Never Dead: The First Two Records
The Milk Carton Kids - Live From Lincoln Theatre
Bombay Bicycle Club - I Had The Blues But I Shook Them Loose: Live At Brixton
PJ Harvey - Is This Desire? (2020 Reissue)
PJ Harvey - Is This Desire? - Demos
Goat Girl - On All Fours
The Dead South - Served Live
Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio - I Told You So
Lastlings - First Contact
Steve Harley & Cockney Rebel - Best Years Of Our Lives: 45th Anniversary
BlackPink - THE ALBUM
Various Artists - Golden Age: 25 Years Of Signature Sounds
Joan As Police Woman - Live
The Notwist - Vertigo Days
John Prine - Storm Windows [SYEOR 2021 LP]
John Prine - Pink Cadillac [SYEOR 2021 LP]
John Prine - Bruised Orange [SYEOR 2021 LP]
Ani DiFranco - Revolutionary Love
Public Enemy - Power To The People And The Beats - Public Enemy's Greatest Hits
Anna B Savage - A Common Turn
& More .....
Aaron Lee Tasjan - Tasjan! Tasjan! Tasjan! - New West Records
Every now and then an artist comes along who makes you remember why you started listening to albums in the first place: Aaron Lee Tasjan is that artist. With his off-center charm and restless creative dazzle, he makes music with conviction that has its roots in rock’s murky past, armed with an arsenal of songs that spill over with humor, intelligence, irony, and at times prophecy.He updates the idea of androgyny but dispels the emotional and social ambiguity with lyrics that reflect his own geographic and artistic wanderings. Tasjan! Tasjan! Tasjan! is 11 songs. The man who began the album, is not the same man who completed it, transformed both by the experiences that inspired the songs and crafting them. This is not anxious music for anxious times, but rather music as an antidote for anxious times. It is the sound of the future arriving.
John Mayall - The First Generation 1965-1974 - Snapper UK / Madfish
There are box sets and then there are BOX SETS. John Mayall’s The First Generation 1965-1974 set sits firmly in the latter category, being substantial both in the artefacts contained within and the superb music it encompasses. The first set of this size to be released documenting John Mayall’s early years sees not only all albums from his much lauded formative career, but also unreleased tracks aplenty. Featuring Eric Clapton, Peter Green, Mick Taylor, Harvey Mandel, Blue Mitchell, Jon Mark and many more outstanding musicians, this mammoth package contains 35 CDs, a beautiful hardback book and much more. Not for nothing did Mayall earn the moniker ‘Godfather of the British Blues’. For a short but compelling time in the 60s and 70s he recognised raw talent, took it in, nurtured it, and everyone thrived and benefitted as a result. Many of the best musicians of the period passed through the hallowed ranks of John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers. All are on show here in a stunning set crammed with musical highlights.
At just 20-years-old, Arlo Parks has seen her profile steadily rise since the release of her debut single, “Cola,” in 2018. Parks is quick to note the impact independent record stores have had on her, and her ascension in the music world. “I spent a lot of time in indie record stores when I was a kid and I’m really grateful for all they brought to me,” said Parks. “They’re a place where you can really delve into music, explore new music and discover whole worlds of sonic palates.”
Since releasing “Cola,” Parks, a London-based musician and poet, has emerged as a favorite on “artists to watch” lists thanks to a prolific output of delicately-soulful tracks like “Sophie,” “Eugene” and “Hurt.” Along the way, Parks has received praise from the likes of artists like Billie Eilish, Wyclef Jean, Clairo, Florence Welsh and Phoebe Bridgers.
The next stop on Parks’ journey comes on January 29 with the release of her full-length debut, Collapsed in Sunbeams. Parks describes the album as “a series of vignettes and intimate portraits surrounding my adolescence and the people that shaped it. It is rooted in storytelling and nostalgia – I want to feel both universal and hyper-specific.”
PREVIEW AND PURCHASE - Collapsed in Sunbeams