The fourth week of new releases in April. Info and links for the ones you want to know about most below, plus some other ones you may not have heard of (but should know), with audio & video for your listening and viewing pleasure. Click here to see releases from the past several weeks…
Lily Allen, Sheezus (Warner Bros.)
It's hard not to like such a brash and sassy British pop songstress, especially when she writes such cheeky lyrics. This is her third full-length studio album, and while I'm not a huge fan of first single "Hard Out There" (for a bitch), I don't hate it. U.K. music rag Q notes that Sheezus is a blend of "punchy feminist statements, wistful party jams, NSFW love letters to her husband, two-finger salutes to her critics, and moments of startling vulnerability."
Gregg Allman, All My Friends: Celebrating The Songs & Voice Of Gregg Allman (Rounder)
A live album of performances honoring the rock n' roll icon, by Warren Haynes, Derek Trucks, Susan Tedeschi, Devon Allman, Robert Randolph, Sam Moore, Keb' Mo', Dr. John, Pat Monahan, John Hiatt, Taj Mahal, Widespread Panic, Vince Gill, Martina McBride, Jackson Brown,the Allman Brothers Band with musical direction by Don Was, and others.
Rodrigo Amarante, Cavalo (Easy Sound)
Andrew Jackson Jihad, Christmas Island (SideOneDummy)
Atmosphere, Southersiders (Rhymesayers)
Badbadnotgood, III (Innovative Leisure)
Black Stone Cherry, Magic Mountain (Roadrunner)
Current Swell, Ulysses (Nettwerk)
Eno Hyde, Someday World (Warp)
[Brian Eno and Karl Hyde project]
Fujiya & Miyagi, Artificial Sweeteners (Yep Roc)
The UK's krauty electro outfit issues a fifth full-length. Check the video for first single "Flaws" below. Much more of an early '80s sound with heavy urgent synth jams, but with the same breathy-Brit vocals. Check it out after the jump along with the rest of this week's new releases....
Ben & Ellen Harper, Childhood Home (Prestige Folkways)
Ben Harper and his mom collabed on this personal collection of rootsy original material — six songs written by Ben and four written by multi-instrumentalist mom Ellen — exploring the intricacies of family life. Listen to "A House Is a Home" below.
Curtis Harding, Soul Power (Burger Records)
The debut album from Atlanta's hottest and latest classic soul revivalist. Video for "Keep on Shining" below.
Hunter Hayes, Storyline (Atlantic)
King Dude, Fear (Not Just Religious Music)
Nikki Lane, All Or Nothin' (New West)
Leisure Cruise, Leisure Cruise (Last Gang Records)
[Dave Hodge & Leah Siegel project]
Hamilton Leithauser, Black Hours (Ribbon Music)
[Of The Walkmen]
Lil Wayne, Tha Carter V (Young Money/Cash Money/Republic)
Lykke Li, I Never Learn (Atlantic)
The Swedish songstress and indie dream pop darling delivers a third studio LP, recorded Björn Yttling (of Peter Bjorn & John) and Greg Kurstin (Lily Allen, The Bird and the Bee). Video for "Love Me Like I'm Not Made Of Stone" below...
Matrimony, Montibello Memories (Sony)
The Charlotte alt rock outfit — which plays Tropical Heatwave this Sat., May 9 — is fronted by husband-and-wife duo Ashlee Hardee-Brown and Jimmy Brown, along with Hardee-Brown’'s brothers, Jordan and CJ. They've earned some good press from the likes of Rolling Stone, This is their debut. Listen to "Southern Skies" below.
Sarah McLachlan, Shine On (Verve)
Natalie Merchant, Natalie Merchant (Nonesuch)
MONEY, The Shadow Of Heaven (Bella Union)
Morning Parade, Pure Adulterated Joy (So Recordings/Caroline)
Naughty Boy, Hotel Cabana (Naughty Boy Recordings)
Papercuts, Life Among The Savages (Easy Sound/Memphis Industries)
Paws, Youth Culture Forever (FatCat)
Pet the Preacher, The Cave & The Sunlight (Napalm Records)
SBTRKT, Transitions I (Young Turks)
Mike Sempert, Mid Dream (Velvet Blue Music)
Smoke Fairies, Smoke Fairies (Full Time Hobby)
Stone Cold Fox, Memory Palace (self-release)
The Horrors, Luminous (XL)
Trophy Scars, Holy Vacants (Monotreme Records)
tUnE-yArDs, Nikki Nack (4AD)
Merrill Garbus is still working out the finer points of catchy polyrhythmic weirdness with tUnE-yArDs, and she's produced yet another fantastic quirked-out album. Lead-off track says it all: a clash of multi-tracked, multi-layered, multi-pitched voices all chanting different variations of "Find a new way," a range of percussive stuff, off-kilter basslines, inexplicable noises and harpsichord embellishments that are likely synthesizers or some sort of programming, fabulous lyrical passages like "She tried to tell me that I had a right to scream just like a bird had to sing / And I believed her but in truth if you're convincing I'll believe anything," and a vocal breakdown that finds Garbus spouting "Oh, change-o strange-o, 'nother rearrange-o". Hilariously fun video for "Water Fountain" below.
The Valley Below, Man Girl EP (Capitol/Caroline)
The male-female duo’s debut mixes shoegazey instrumentals with dance pop hooks and lovely vocal harmonies. First single “Peaches” is described as "a celebration of mutual attraction and sensuality." Listen below.
Willie Watson, Folk Singer Vol. 1 (Acony)
Young Magic, Breathing Statues (Carpark)