new releases

ISSUE #71 / August 8, 2019


Mwenso & The Shakes / Emergence [The Process of Coming Into Being] / Mwenso & the Shakes , Ropeadope

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Mwenso & The Shakes is a magical amalgamation of musical influences forming this New York collective that came together over months of late night jams at Dizzy’s, the nightclub in Lincoln Center. Truly from all over the world, the members celebrate a potent combination of African and African-American music on this live recording, Emergence [The Process of Coming Into Being] is one of our favorite jazz releases this year. 

Their closest show is October 30th in Des Moines. Anyone for a road trip?!


Black Milk / DiVE / Mass Appeal , Computer Ugly

Detroit MC, Black Milk, is back with EP  DiVE  (at 11 songs, it’s a little big for that designation, but okay),which continues his expert blend of neo-soul and traditional hip-hop. This is an expert progression of a sound that Black Milk has been honing for the better part of two decades, and features some of the richest beats, not just in his own catalogue, but in all of hip-hop. 



Mister Lies / Mister Lies / Mister Lies

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Born in Chicago but coming-of-age in NYC, Mister Lies is the project of composer and sound artist Nick Zanca, and this self-titled release (and third full length) stretches into alt-R&B, synth pop territory without prescribing to any of the common tropes. An original voice in a far-too-often cookie cutter world.  


Deadbeat Beat / How Far / Arrowhawk

The surfy indie rock of Detroit’s Deadbeat Beat brings their How Far into our top picks of the week with it’s sheer catchy wonder and addictive backbeat. 

Deadbeat Beat will be at Bric-a-brac records on Saturday August 24th, with Emily Jane Powers. It’s at 5PM, all-ages, and most importantly FREE!  


The Harmaleighs / She Won’t Make Sense / Record Label

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Nashville duo The Harmaleighs have made huge strides with concept record She Won’t Make Sense, expanding their sound from its acoustic focus into an electric world that perfectly captures the personal  journey singer/guitarist Haley Grant went through to come out the other side of a bought with mental illness.   

They will be at SPACE in Evanston on September 25th opening for Chris Pureka. Tix are $17 - $32.


The Teskey Brothers / Run Home Slow / Glassnote , AWAL

It’s hard to believe once you hear them that The Teskey Brothers are four caucasions from Melbourne, Australia. With grace and respect they have recreated the sound of the circa late ‘60s Stax Records R&B family. Run Home Slow is a fantastic album that will long live in our rotation. 

Thalia Hall is hosting this remarkable soul outfit on March 18th, 2020. Tix are $25 - $40.

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Brat Curse / Brat Curse / Anyway

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Straight up garage punk out of Columbus, Brat Curse hit hard on their second self-titled record of the decade.   


Mikey Erg / Waxbuilt Castles / Don Giovanni

In a departure from the defunct power punk outfit The Ergs!, the titular drummer/lead singer Mikey Erg journeys into the personal with his new solo effort Waxbuilt Castles

He’ll be at Chop Shop on September 17th with The Homeless Gospel Choir. Tix are $13 and it’s all-ages.

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Miynt / Stay On Your Mind / B3SCI


Swedish psych indie singer, MIYNT, caught the world’s attention with EP, ep no. 1. She returns with a fresh batch of hazy, ethereal, and catchy-as-hell tracks iwith EP Stay On Your Mind. This is decidedly a throwback to ‘70s psychedelic music, with its lush production and Miynt’s space-bound, but absolutely terrific vocals. This is as sure a ‘next big thing’ as you can find out there.



Slaughter Beach, Dog / Safe and Also No Fear / Lame-O

Pithy and evocative storytelling paired with expansive rock. The lyrics will carry you through the trouble of other people’s lives, but the music will comfort you into thinking we are all moving forward towards a better day. If you like jam bands, indie, or folk, it is def worth a listen.


They will be at Lincoln Hall on September 13th, tix are $17.

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Cross Record / Cross Record / Ba Da Bing!

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While attending the Art Institute, visual artist and musician Emily Cross took on the moniker Cross Record, and after moving to Austin with partner and fellow musician Dan Duszynski, she began recording her atmospheric experiments that have come to a culmination in this new self-titled record that is a journey through the formidable sound layers of Cross’ mind.   


Bad Omens / Finding God Before God Finds Me / Sumerian

In their first album since bass player Vincent Riquier was forced to leave the band to to injury, Virginia metalcore band, Bad Omens proves that there is going to be no awkward transition. Finding God Before God Finds Me still displays the band’s penchant for extremely grim lyricism, willingness to experiment with various corners of the metal world, and a strong bend towards memorable hooks. Still, this is a maturation for Bad Omens- one that will certainly please metalcore devotees, and may even win over a few doubters. 


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Young Guv / GUV I / Run For Cover

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Toronto’s Ben Cook has been in the local hardcore scene for decades, but his solo work as Young Guv is much more accessable garage rock and GUV I, explores what it’s like to leave home (he left Toronto in 2018 for Brooklyn) and the journey to discovering one’s self away from the familiar.


Grey Hairs / Health & Social Care / Gringo

A heavy-hitting third record from this Nottingham quartet, Grey Hairs, who deliver a heavy power chord frenzy with Health & Social Care.

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Arthur Moon / Arthur Moon / Arthur Moon

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Lora-Faye Åshuvud is all about redefining pop music with Arthur Moon. Her debut, self-titled full-length is one of this week’s most interesting and engrossing listens. 

She’ll be at SPACE on September 27th in support of Oh Land. Tix are $15, and it’s All Ages.


GRLwood / I Sold My Soul to the Devil When I Was 12 / sonaBLAST!

It’s fun to be angry, and sometimes it’s very, very necessary. I Sold My Soul To The Devil When I Was 12 is a delightfully rage-fueled album from scream pop duo GRLwood. The self-described “queerdos” are leaning into the feelings of abject anger in an increasingly screwed up world, and the music is following suit as this is a decidedly more hardcore sound that matches the appropriately angsty and straightforward fury. This is not gormless whining, however as the band displays a keen sense of irony and a preternatural sense of when to go for satire and when to unleash more bare anger. Songs like, “Get Shot” are especially relevant as they talk about being nice to sad boys for fear of being shot. Framing this as advice from a mother makes it all the more stark when considered against the likelihood that somewhere in the country, someone has probably had that very conversation, in spite of the absurdity. This is a massive leap for GRLwood and one that shows a band of immense ferocity coming into their own in real time. (And not a moment too soon.) 


GRLwood will be at Sleeping Village on September 20th. Tix are $16 in advance, $18 at the door



Nérija / Blume / Domino


A female-centric jazz collective out of London’s burgeoning young jazz scene, Nérija’s debut, full-length is this week’s top listen for anyone who appreciates where the genre is headed.


So Sensitive / Bedroom Drama / Soft Boy Songs

This debut from duo Kira Clark (Muscle and Marrow) and Keith McGraw is raw synth pop at its most powerful. Bedroom Drama is “subversive pop” in the extreme. So Sensitive is taking on the patriarchy of the music industry with deep grooves and flowing vocals.

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concrete concrete / Drifter / concrete concrete

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Drifter is a mesmerizing debut, full-length from this post-rock trio hailing from NYC. concrete concrete is an act to keep an eye on.


Possible Humans / Everybody Split / Trouble In Mind

Another excellent debut this week comes from Melbourne indie rockers Possible Humans with Everybody Split. We swear, Australians just know how to produce the best tunes these days. 

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Davina and The Vagabonds / Sugar Drops / Davina and The Vagabonds , Red House , Compass

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This Twin Cities outfit keeps the New Orleans jazz sound of the 1930s alive and well, headed by the vocal chops of Davina Sowers. Davina and The Vagabonds are an old-school gem who can’t go wrong on the strong Sugar Drops.  

They’ll be at SPACE on October 7th. Tix are $15 - $27, and it’s all-ages.


Clario / Immunity / Clario , FADER

DIY star, Clairo, has arrived with her debut album, Immunity. The lo-fi indie pop that rocketed Clairo to the top of the YouTube recommendation feed is on full display here, along with a clear evolution in the young singer's craft. The songwriting in particular is a more focused series of dreamy contemplations about growing up and the tribulations of life and love as a young woman. Clairo provides an excellent new voice to the genre as well as proves positive the value of indie art.