It’s Artic Monkeys New Vinyl Thursday at The Vinyl Underground at 7th Heaven. Check out this week’s list of new vinyl arrivals:
The 1975 – Being Funny In A Foreign Language (Limited Edition, White Colored Vinyl, Indie Exclusive)
Abbey Lincoln – Straight Ahead (180 Gram Vinyl, Remastered)
Arctic Monkeys – The Car (Colored Vinyl, Indie Exclusive, Digital Download Card)
Amyl and The Sniffers- Amyl and the Sniffers
Banditos – Right On (Gold, Indie Exclusive, Digital Download Card)
Barenaked Ladies – Stunt (Limited Edition, 180 Gram Vinyl, Yellow Colored Vinyl)
Big John Patton – Oh Baby!
Blink 182 – Nine (Gatefold LP Jacket, 140 Gram Vinyl)
The B-52’s – Mesopotamia (Orange Clear Vinyl, 140 Gram Vinyl, Brick & Mortar Exclusive)
The B-52’s – The B-52’s (Clear Vinyl, Red, 140 Gram Vinyl, Brick & Mortar Exclusive)
The B-52’s – Wild Planet (Blue Clear Vinyl, 140 Gram Vinyl, Brick & Mortar Exclusive)
Beyoncé – Renaissance (180 Gram Vinyl, Booklet, Poster, Deluxe Edition)
It’s been six years since Beyonce’s last album, but Queen Bey has stayed busy, dropping the excellent
live album Homecoming, appearing in The Lion King remake and headlining a stadium tour with her
Renaissance isn’t as much a revival as the continuation and expansion of Beyonce’s considerable
strengths. There may not be a grand statement here as there was on 2016’s Lemonade, but the
undeniable vibe is to embrace joy and forget about everything else.
Although Beyonce is the unquestionable star, she gets help from Raphael Saadiq, Skrillex, The-Dream,
Tricky and No ID. The resulting 16 tracks, weave in and out of different styles to create a varied,
invigorating hour-long dance mix.
From the disco of “Virgo’s Groove” to deep bass of “America Has a Problem,” the only way these songs
won’t have you dancing is if your shoes have been nailed to the floor. “Church Girl” marries a gospel
sample with a trap beat. “Cozy” speaks of feeling comfortable in your skin over an elastic beat from
Black trans producer Honey Dijon.
After spending far too long worrying about bubbles and distancing, Renaissance embraces the energy
created by a crowded dance floor and the Black, queer, underground pioneers who helped establish and
shape the scene. -Joel Francis
Black Sabbath – Black Sabbath
Comet Is Coming – Hyper-Dimensional Expansion Beam
Cheer-Accident – Here Comes The Sunset (Colored Vinyl)
Digable Planets – Blowout Comb (Purple Clear Vinyl)
Elvis Costello & the Attractions – All This Useless Beauty (Limited Edition, 180 Gram Vinyl, Gold Colored Vinyl)
Gerry Mulligan – Night Lights
The Greg Foat Group – Live at the Playboy Club London
Ghost – Impera
Ghost – Prequelle
Jill Scott – Who Is Jill Scott: Words And Sounds, Vol. 1 (Limited Edition)
Kendrick Lamar – Good Kid, M.A.A.D City (10th Anniversary Edition, Clear Vinyl, Indie Exclusive)
Kinks – Kinda Kinks; The Kink Kontroversy; Face to Face
For whatever reason, the Kinks seem to always get lost in the British Invasion shuffle, behind the
Beatles, Stones and Who. Three reissues show why the Kinks’ early work deserves a second look.
The band was still feeling their way when Kinda Kinks was rush-released in early 1965 to coincide with a
world tour. Despite the shaky circumstances, Kinda Kinks is a clear improvement on their debut,
released less than six months earlier. A key factor in this growth lies in singer and bandleader Ray
Davies’ songwriting abilities. Single “Tired of Waiting for You” is instantly catchy, simultaneously both
tough and tender and – perhaps most importantly – nothing like previous hits “You Really Got Me” and
“All Day and All of the Night.”
Other stand-out tracks on Kinda Kinks include the delicate and lovelorn “Nothin’ in the World Can Stop
Me Worryin’ ‘Bout that Girl,” put to great use 25 years later in the movie Rushmore. Too many tracks
sound like producer Shel Talmy’s work with the Who and Creation to make Kinda Kinks essential, but
points the quartet in the right direction.
Released in late 1965, The Kink Kontroversy is where the band really starts to separate from the rest of
the pack. There’s only one cover among the dozen tracks. The big single was “Till the End of the Day,”
but “Ring the Bells” and “Where Have All the Good Times Gone” are also very strong.
Fans had to wait almost a year for the Kinks’ fourth album, Face to Face. If the previous release had
shown that Davies could pen an album’s worth of songs, Face to Face demonstrated that Davies could
write quality songs that could hang together as an album.
Opening track “Party Line” immediately grabs hold and the ensuing tracks don’t let go. Davies’ distinctly
British sensibilities come the fore on “Dandy,” while “Session Man” skewers the music industry (with
harpsichord!). The real estate-themed songs “A House in the Country” and “Most Exclusive Residence
for Sale” paint the respective portraits of a man so disliked he has to escape to rural hobbies and a
business tycoon in hard times. Placed near the album’s end, single “Sunny Afternoon” will slap a grin on
After Face to Face, the Kinks started a four-year string of triumphs, starting with Something Else in 1967
and culminating with 1971’s Muswell Hillbillies. Watching them gear up for glory is almost more
interesting in some ways and shouldn’t be overlooked. -Joel Francis
Leon Bridges – Coming Home (180 Gram Vinyl, Download Insert)
Lou Reed – Words & Music, May 1965 (Deluxe Edition, With Bonus 7″)
Lou Reed – Words & Music, May 1965 (Yellow Colored Vinyl, Indie Exclusive)
Low- HEY WHAT
March Violets -Play Loud Play Purple (Complete Singles 1982-85 & More) (Limited Edition, Purple Colored Vinyl, Gatefold LP Jacket)
Melody’s Echo Chamber – Unfold
My Morning Jacket – MMJ Live Vol. 2: Chicago 2021 (Translucent Orange 3 LP, Limited Edition)
Miles Davis – Bitches Brew [140 gram Vinyl]
My Chemical Romance- Life On The Murder Scene
Notorious B.I.G. – Life After Death
Oliver Nelson With Eric Dolphy. – Straight Ahead
Otis Spann – Otis Spann Is the Blues (180 Gram Vinyl, Remastered)
Pink Floyd – More (180 Gram Vinyl)
Red Hot Chili Peppers – Return Of The Dream Canteen (Colored Vinyl, Gold, Indie Exclusive)
The Rolling Stones – HONK
The Reverend Horton Heat – Smoke ’em If You Got ’em (Clear Vinyl, Limited Edition)
Say She She – Prism – Pink Rose (Pink Colored Vinyl, Indie Exclusive)
Sloan – Steady (First Edition, Purple Colored Vinyl)
The Specials – The Specials
The Stooges – The Stooges (Colored Vinyl, Brown, Brick & Mortar Exclusive)
Stryper – The Final Battle (Yellow Colored Vinyl, Limited Edition, Indie Exclusive)
Slipknot – The End, So Far (Yellow Colored Vinyl, Indie Exclusive)
Skid Row – The Gang’s All Here (Limited Edition, Black, Red, White Vinyl, Indie Exclusive)
S.G. Goodman – Old Time Feeling
Taylor Swift – Midnights (Mahogany, Jade Green, Moonstone & Blood Moon Vinyl Editions)
Todd Rundgren – Space Force (Clear Vinyl)
Television – Marquee Moon (Clear Vinyl, 140 Gram Vinyl, Brick & Mortar Exclusive)
Of the four major bands to emerge from the late ‘70s CBGB scene, Television have always been the least
heralded and least understood. A good part of this is likely because the group didn’t last that long or
have any major hits. But another key element is that despite their obvious punk roots, Television doesn’t
really sound like a punk band.
Marquee Moon, Television’s 1977 debut album, is the punk album you can play for your uncle who likes
Steely Dan. Eschewing genre norms, the shortest of Marquee Moon’s eight tracks is just under four
minutes. Album closer “Torn Curtain” is nearly 7 minutes and the title track is more than 10 minutes
long. Think of how many songs the Ramones could deliver in that time.
Opening track “See No Evil” usually appears on most punk compilations, but even here the performance
is more nervous than bold and abrasive. The album’s drawing card – and what continues to make it a
compelling listen – is the six-string interaction between Tom Verlaine and Richard Lloyd. The two aren’t
afraid to jam, but there are never any flashy solos or bombastic moments. On the lengthy intro to the
title track, Verlaine and Lloyd play complementary rhythm parts, devoid of any ego. It’s hard not to
listen to how the two communicate across the record and hear where Wilco have grabbed many of their
best ideas over the past 15 years.
Verlaine and Lloyd made another album the following year before calling it quits. An early ‘90s reunion
album is their only other studio offering. But the waves they made on Marquee Moon reverberated
across devotees such as R.E.M., Pixies, Sonic Youth and XTC, and continue to be heard today, more than
40 years later. -Joel Francis
Tame Impala – Currents
Various Artists – Blue Note Re:imagined II
Various Artists – Music Lovers: Bossa Nova
Wilco – Yankee Hotel Foxtrot (2022 Remaster) (White Colored Vinyl, Indie Exclusive, Remastered)
Young the Giant – Home Of The Strange
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Enjoy the music and we will see you soon. Your loving Vinyl Underground at 7th Heaven staff:
Sherman, Gordon, Cat, Matt, Dylan, Doyle, Heather, Greg, Dave and Lain