It’s Deftones New Vinyl Thursday at The Vinyl Underground at 7th Heaven. Check out this week’s list of new vinyl arrivals:
21 Savage & Metro Boomin – Savage Mode II (140 Gram Vinyl, Red Colored Vinyl)
311 – From Chaos
Ali Shaheed Muhammad, Adrian Younge & Gary Bartz – Gary Bartz
Art Blakey and The Jazz Messengers – Caravan
Allen Ginsberg – At Reed College: The First Recorded Reading Of Howl & Other Poems
Ariana Grande – Positions (Clear Vinyl)
Ariana Grande -Sweetener
Pop princess Ariana Grande’s third album in as many years is the first not to come with a backstory.
2018’s Sweetener arrived after the Manchester Arena bombing where 22 Grande fans were killed
before a concert. The next year’s Thank U, Next, landed after the death Mac Miller, an ex-boyfriend, and
a public romance – and subsequent break-up with comedian Pete Davidson.
Freed from any weighty events, Sweetner finds Grande … horny. On “34+35” (it adds up to 69, get it?),
Grande asks “can you stay up all night/f-k me until the daylight” against a pizzicato string section. While
few would associate Grande with Lil Kim, the former Nickelodeon star sings delivers more than a few
stanzas that seem cribbed from Lil Kim’s albums on “Nasty,” a song about the joys of oral pleasure.
Unlike Kim, however, Grande’s come-ons arrive over lush pop melodies in a seemingly innocent soprano
voice. While the combination of the two might quickly lead the listener to the threshold of the bedroom,
they rarely bubble over with an energy appropriate for the bed itself.
Pop music is littered with artists that show a bold, sexual side as a way to demonstrate their newfound
maturity (see: Cyrus, Miley). In this light, Sweetener comes across as a transitional album. It will be
interesting to see if Grande is able to translate this into more grown-up pop fare or if it stalls out in
arrested development. -Joel Francis
Arlo Parks – Collapsed In Sunbeams
Atmosphere – God Loves Ugly
Alice Cooper – Detroit Stories
Bob Dylan – The Essential Bob Dylan
Booker Ervin – Book Cooks [Import]
Busta Rhymes – Extinction Level Event 2: The Wrath of God (Split Black & White Vinyl)
The Black Crowes – Amorica
The Black Crowes – Shake Your Money Maker (2020 Remaster, Deluxe Edition, Remastered)
The Black Crowes – The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion
Black Pumas – Black Pumas (Bonus Tracks, With Bonus 7″, Deluxe Edition, Colored Vinyl)
Beastie Boys – To The 5 Boroughs
The B-52’s – B-52’s
Brian Eno – Ambient 1: Music for Airports [180 gram Vinyl]
Benny the Butcher – Burden Of Proof
Chris Stapleton – Starting Over [180 gram Vinyl]
Counting Crows – August And Everything After
Deftones – White Pony (Deluxe Edition, Indie Exclusive, Anniversary Edition)
Deftones – White Pony (20th Anniversary Super Deluxe Edition, 4LP, 2CD)
Donna Lewis – Now In A Minute (Limited Edition,Orange Colored Vinyl)
Dolly Parton – The Very Best Of Dolly Parton
Denzel Curry – Unlocked
Danny Elfman – Batman Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
David Bowie – Station to Station
Ella Fitzgerald – Hits
Emmaline Twist – Dissimulation
Five Finger Death Punch – The Way Of The Fist
Freddie Gibbs & Madlib – Pinata
Floating Points, Pharoah Sanders & The London Symphony Orchestra – Promises
Gene Russell – New Direction
Glass Animals – Zaba
Gorillaz – Song Machine, Season One
Herbie Hancock – Mwandishi
Imelda May – 11 Past The Hour
Jim Croce – Photographs & Memories: His Greatest Hits
John Coltrane – Lush Life
Jon Batiste – WE ARE
Jon Batiste – Soul (Music From and Inspired by the Motion Picture)
Janelle Monae – Dirty Computer (Digital Download Card)
Julien Baker – Little Oblivions (Yellow Colored Vinyl, Indie Exclusive)
Joe Strummer – Assembly
Joe Strummer, the former frontman for The Clash, seemed a bit lost after his legendary punk group
imploded in the mid-‘80s. He popped up in movies and on movie soundtracks, released a solo album
that misfired and hooked up with the Pogues. While there are certainly many good moments from all of
these endeavors, nothing seemed to click until he formed the Mescaleros at the end of the ‘90s.
Assembly is a new collection of material from Strummer’s post-Clash days, mostly drawn from his days
with the Mescaleros. Strummer never sounded as angry on these tracks as he did on “White Riot” or
“I’m so Bored with the U.S.A.” but he was every bit as passionate.
The Mescaleros don’t sound much like Strummer’s old band. Their palette was broad enough to capture
folkie world music like “Johnny Appleseed,” electronic-based rock on “Yalla Yalla” and a faithful cover of
Bob Marley’s “Redemption Song.” A pair of Clash songs performed live with the Mescaleros and a
couple tracks from Strummer’s ‘80s output round out this generous, 16-track anthology.
Assembly won’t replace London Calling, but can proudly filed alongside it as the final chapter in
Strummer’s sporadic but stellar artistry. -Joel Francis
Knife Crime – Lovely Gary
Kanye West – 808s & Heartbreak
Led Zeppelin – Led Zeppelin 1 (180 Gram Vinyl, Remastered)
Lucinda Williams – Runnin’ Down A Dream: A Tribute To Tom Petty
Miles Davis – Black Beauty
Miles Davis – Milestones (180 Gram Vinyl)
Muhal Richard Abrams – Celestial Birds
Mad Season – Above
Metallica – Kill ‘Em All
Michael Jackson – Thriller
Matthew Halsall – Salute To The Sun
Nick Drake – Bryter Layter
Nick Drake – Pink Moon
Norah Jones – Til We Meet Again (Live)
Nirvana – Nirvana
Nirvana – Bleach
The Offspring – Conspiracy Of One
After the surprising break-out hit of “Come Out and Play,” the Offspring hopped to a major label, where
they saw even more chart success. The band was riding three Top 10 rock hits from their previous album
and a high-profile slot at Woodstock ’99 when Conspiracy of One dropped at the dawn of the new
As on other Offspring releases, the band tries very hard to be several things at once. Album opener
“Come Out Swinging” is a solid punk song. The second track (and lead single) “Original Prankster”
features a Rob Schneider sample and sounds like a Weird Al parody. The third song, “Want You Bad”
sounds like second-tier Get Up Kids.
Every good moment, like “Dammit, I Changed Again,” is immediately washed away by what sounds like
your mom would listen to if she hung out in front of Hot Topic and tried to be cool. While Conspiracy of
One is better than what Blink-182 were offering around the same time, it’s decidedly weaker than what
their former label-mates NOFX were doing. -Joel Francis
The Offspring – Let The Bad Times Roll (Orange Colored Vinyl, Indie Exclusive)
OPTO S – Human Indictive / Live
Outkast – Speakerboxxx / The Love Below
Patsy Cline – Walkin’ After Midnight – The Essentials (Pink, Gold Vinyl)
Parliament – The Clones Of Dr. Funkenstein
Psychedelic Porn Crumpets – SHYGA! The Sunlight Mound (180 Gram Vinyl)
Pink Floyd – The Wall (180 Gram Vinyl, Gatefold LP Jacket)
Pink Floyd – The Dark Side Of The Moon (180 Gram Vinyl)
Pink Floyd – More (180 Gram Vinyl)
Prince – Purple Rain (180 Gram Vinyl, Remastered)
Portishead – Dummy
Pixies – Surfer Rosa
Red Hot Chili Peppers – Blood Sugar Sex Magik (180 Gram Vinyl)
Rob Zombie – Hellbilly Deluxe
Ron English – Fish Feet (180 Gram Vinyl)
Slightly Stoopid – Live & Direct: Acoustic Roots
Sun Ra – Astro Black
Theon Cross – Fyah
Aside from New Orleans brass bands, the tuba isn’t heard much in jazz. While spiritually indebted to the
Crescent City, Theon Cross is best known for his role with Shabaka Hutchings in the Sons of Kemet and
his work as part of the London jazz scene.
Cross’ debut album Fyah is an impressive showcase of this oft-overlooked instrument. The sound ranges
widely from Dixieland to Afrobeat and hits most places in between across the album’s 46 minutes.
The funky “Cadence of Meroe” answers the question of what Sly Stone bass player Larry Graham would
sound like if he blew brass. On opening number “Activate,” Cross spars with drummer Moses Boyd as
saxophonist Nubya Garcia blows a tense melody. The eight-minute “CIYA” veers into fusion territory on
the back of Artie Zaitz’s guitar solo while Boyd hangs on a hip-hop rhythm.
Across the eight songs on Fyah, Cross not only resurrects the tuba, but remakes the instrument’s legacy,
moving its lineage over from John Phillips Sousa to Charles Mingus. -Joel Francis
Tame Impala – Innerspeaker
Tom Petty – Finding Wildflowers (Gold Colored Vinyl, Indie Exclusive)
Train – Drops of Jupiter
Train’s debut album got their foot in the door with the Top 10 hit “Meet Virginia,” but Drops of Jupiter –
the name of both their No. 1 hit single and sophomore album – blew the band into the big time.
The title track is an epic blast of Madman Across the Water-era Elton John, complete with John’s
arranger Paul Buckmaster handling the song’s orchestration and Allman Brothers/Rolling Stones pianist
Chuck Leavell on the keys.
While the rest of the album doesn’t ascend as high, the band managed to squeeze a couple more hits
from the soaring “Something More” and the up-tempo “She’s On Fire.” There isn’t much mystery in
Train’s music, so if you liked these tracks, you’ll probably dig the rest. For everyone else, well, Train is
what you get if you think the Counting Crows are too edgy.
In celebration of the album’s 20th anniversary, Drops of Jupiter is being issued on vinyl for the first time –
in cool bronze wax, to boot. -Joel Francis
Vijay Iyer Sextet – Far From Over
Various Artists – Wilcovered
This tribute to Chicago indie rockers Wilco started as a cover-mounted CD for a British music magazine
back in 2019. The response was big enough it was pressed to vinyl for Record Store Day last year. Now it
finally sees wider release.
Supervised by Jeff Tweedy, the heart and soul of Wilco, many of the 19 songs were also recorded at the
band’s Loft studio in Chicago. The list of participants reads like the lineup for the ultimate indie rock
music festival: Kurt Vile, Yo La Tengo, Courtney Barnett, Parquet Courts, Sharon Van Etten and Low,
Even more impressive than the roster is the adventurousness of the performances. Most of the covers
unearth new elements in the songs. Cate Le Bon turns “Company in my Back” into a Krautrock number;
Parquet Courts make “Handshake Drugs” sound like a David Byrne outtake and Low interpret “War on
War” as a Laurie Anderson number. There’s a great range in material, too, as the songs span Wilco’s first
album A.M., until their most recent, 2019’s Ode to Joy.
Wilcovered may not be the best entry point for new fans – What’s Your 20? remains a great collection
for newcomers. But longtime fans will relish experiencing these favorite songs from a new perspective. -Joel Francis
Various – Pianist (Original Soundtrack) (White Colored Vinyl, 180 Gram Vinyl)
Various – Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (Original Score)(Teal, Blue Colored Vinyl)
Willie Nelson – That’s Life
Weezer – Ok Human
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Sherman, Gordon, Cat, Matt, Dylan, Doyle, Heather, Dave and Max
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