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After two UK #1 albums, 2 million album sales and an array of international acclaim, you might’ve thought you knew what to expect from Royal Blood. Those preconceptions were shattered when they released ‘Trouble’s Coming’ last summer. Hitting a melting pot of fiery rock riffs and danceable beats, they delivered something fresh, unexpected and yet entirely in tune with what they’d forged their reputation with.
When Mike Kerr and Ben Thatcher sat down to talk about making a new album, they knew what they wanted to achieve. It involved a conscious return to their roots, back when they had made music that was influenced by Daft Punk, Justice, and Philippe Zdar of Cassius. It also called for a similar back-to-basics approach to what had made their self-titled debut album so thrilling, visceral and original.
“We sort of stumbled on this sound, and it was immediately fun to play,” recalls Kerr. “That’s what sparked the creativity on the new album, the chasing of that feeling. It’s weird, though - if you think back to ‘Figure it Out’, it kind of contains the embryo of this album. We realised that we didn’t have to completely destroy what we’d created so far; we just had to shift it, change it. On paper, it’s a small reinvention. But when you hear it, it sounds so fresh.”
Those traits pulsate throughout the new single and title track. Kerr’s spiralling bass riff casts an hypnotic allure as it grows in intensity, while his vocals switch at will between a raw rock roar and a soulful falsetto. It’s underpinned by Thatcher’s thundering beats, his taut rhythms infused with groove-laden hi-hats.
After setting the tone with ‘Trouble’s Coming’, the album opens in breathless, take-no-prisoners style with the fierce metallic grooves of ‘Who Needs Friends’ hitting an early visceral peak. Royal Blood further reference their fresh array of influences by deploying vocodered vocals on ‘Million & One’ before dynamically switching between the biggest contrasts of their sound with ‘Limbo’. Already a fan favourite having been a regular during the duo’s 2019 shows, ‘Boilermaker’ lives up to its reputation and is more than matched by ‘Mad Visions’, which evokes a hyper-aggressive Prince. It ends with a final surprise in the shape of the stark piano ballad ‘All We Have Is Now’, a vulnerable and revealing reminder to live in the moment.
This new approach manifested itself in the duo’s decision to produce the majority of ‘Typhoons’ themselves. ‘Boilermaker’ was produced by Queens of the Stone Age frontman Josh Homme, the two bands having first connected when Royal Blood supported them on a huge North American tour. Meanwhile, the multiple Grammy Award winner Paul Epworth produced ‘Who Needs Friends’ and contributed additional production to ‘Trouble’s Coming’.
5CD + 2 7" Singles Super Deluxe Remastered Edition featuring the album in both Mono and Stereo, bonus tracks featuring 14 previously unheard Pete Townshend Demos, studio sessions, outtakes, unheard jingles and more. The package also features 9 posters, replica ephemera, and an 80 page hard bound book with rare photos and new liner notes by Pete Townshend. 112 tracks, 46 unreleased.
Initially released in December 1967 and described latterly by Rolling Stone as “The Who’s finest album,” The Who Sell Out reflected a remarkable year in popular culture. As well as being forever immortalized as the moment when the counterculture and the “Love Generation” became a global phenomenon and “pop” began metamorphosing into “rock.”
The new Super Deluxe Edition of The Who Sell Out features 112 tracks, 46 of which are unreleased, an 80-page, hard-back, full-color book, including rare period photos, memorabilia, track-by-track annotation and new sleeve notes by Pete Townshend with comments from the likes of Pete Drummond (Radio London DJ), Richard Evans (designer) & Roy Flynn (the Speakeasy Club manager).
The Super Deluxe package also includes nine posters & inserts, including replicas of 20” x 30” original Adrian George album poster, a gig poster from The City Hall, Newcastle, a Saville Theatre show 8-page program, a business card for the Bag o’ Nails club, Kingly Street, a Who fan club photo of group, a flyer for Bath Pavilion concerts including The Who, a crack-back bumper sticker for Wonderful Radio London, Keith Moon’s Speakeasy Club membership card and a Who Fan Club newsletter.
The Who Sell Out was originally planned by Pete Townshend and the band’s managers Kit Lambert & Chris Stamp, as a loose concept album including jingles and commercials linking the songs stylised as a pirate radio broadcast. This concept was born out of necessity as their label and management wanted a new album and Townshend felt that he didn’t have enough songs.
The ground-breaking original plan for Sell Out was to sell advertising space on the album but instead the band opted for writing their own jingles paying tribute to pirate radio stations and to parody an increasingly consumerist society.
The homage to pop-art is evident in both the advertising jingles and the iconic sleeve design created by David King who was the art director at the Sunday Times, and Roger Law who invented the Spitting Image TV show. The sleeve features four advertising images, taken by the renowned photographer David Montgomery, of each band member Odorono deodorant (Pete Townshend), Medac spot cream (Keith Moon), Charles Atlas (John Entwistle) and Roger Daltrey & Heinz baked beans. The story goes that Roger Daltrey caught pneumonia from sitting in the cold beans for too long.
The Who Sell Out is a bold depiction of the period in which it was made, the tail-end of the “swinging-60s” meets pop-art mixed with psychedelia and straight-ahead pop. It’s a glorious blend of classic powerful Who instrumentation, melodic harmonies, satirical lyrical imagery crystallized for what was only the group’s third album. The album’s ambition and scope is unrivalled by the Who, or any other act from that period.
Within the bold concept, were a batch of fabulous and diverse songs. “I Can See for Miles,” a top ten hit at the time, is a Who classic. “Rael,” a Townshend “mini-opera” with musical motifs that reappeared in Tommy and the psychedelic blast of “Armenia City In The Sky” and “Relax” are among the very best material anyone wrote during the 1960s.
One of the most extraordinary albums of any era, The Who Sell Out is The Who’s last “pop” album. Two years later came Tommy – a double concept album about a deaf, dumb and blind kid.
SUPER DELUXE EDITION OF THE CLASSIC GROUNDBREAKING ALBUM
112 TRACKS ACROSS FIVE CDS & 2 7” SINGLES
FEATURING 46 UNRELEASED TRACKS INCLUDING 14 UNHEARD PETE TOWNSHEND DEMOS
80-PAGE HARD BACK BOOK WITH NEW LINER NOTES BY PETE TOWNSHEND AS WELL AS RARE POSTERS, INSERTS & MEMORABILIA
★★“WE WERE HOPING TO GET FREE JAGUARS. WE GOT FIFTY FREE TINS OF BAKED BEANS”★★
"Fearless was an album full of magic and curiosity, the bliss and devastation of youth. It was the diary of the adventures and explorations of a teenage girl who was learning tiny lessons with every new crack in the facade of the fairytale ending she'd been shown in the movies. I'm thrilled to tell you that my new version of Fearless is done and will be with you soon. It's called Fearless (Taylor's Version) and it includes 26 songs." - Taylor Swift. Includes 6 unreleased tracks.
In the midst of the thick New Orleans summer of 2017, Chris Lyons of garage punks Bottomfeeders found himself sitting on a small batch of songs that didn’t quite fit the fuzzed-out pileups of that band. The new songs were more chiming, driving but relaxed, full of little corners begging to be filled with classic pop harmonies and wayward country licks. He called in his trusted confidants: Bottomfeeders drummer and longtime musical partner Lucas Bogner—the two started playing music together at the tender age of 15—plus bassist Pete Campanelli, and Kunal Prakash (Jeff the Brotherhood) dug the songs and signed on, and the quartet started playing in earnest, hunkering down in the practice space.
By the time the band played its first gig in late 2018 at the opening of Nola’s ManRay Records, the songs had multiplied and the members of the newly christened Silver Synthetic had become genuine rock & roll craftsmen. In a world that doesn’t seem capable of swaying, Silver Synthetic’s self-titled debut shakes and boogies.
It makes sense that the band’s first gig was in a record shop ‘cause folks, this is record nerd-core in a major way, evocative of the LP's first golden era, as the late sixties oozed into the strange 1970s, with the requisite T-Rex stomps, Britfolk twists and turns, and dueling Verlaine/Lloyd guitars. It’s about warmth, and you can practically smell the gently glowing amp tubes on “In the Beginning,” which wafts along on a gust borrowed from Lou Reed’s beatific Coney Island Baby breeziness. With “Chasm Killer,” the boys lean into jammy heartland rock, almost approaching Silver Bullet Band territory at one point! Even when the band kicks into charging lean rock-n-roller, like on the Kinksy “Around the Bend,” there’s a laid-backness that allows more room for the spirit.
You could call Silver Synthetic rock & roll formalists, but the truth is they're more like minimalists, stripping away tired clutter and unnecessary bloat and just zooming in on the essential.
Just a few weeks after the surprise release of the Cuttin' Grass (Vol. 1): Butcher Shoppe Sessions album—which Uproxx called “the most sublime and delightful music he’s yet made on record”—Sturgill Simpson returns with the next installment of his bluegrass series, Cuttin' Grass (Vol. 2): The Cowboy Arms Sessions. The genre-defying singer/songwriter reconvened an A-Team of acoustic players (now dubbed "The Hillbilly Avengers") for another round of reinterpretations of his catalogue, this time largely focusing on 2016's A Sailor's Guide to Earth, which won the Grammy for Country Album of the Year and was nominated for Album of the Year. This volume also includes "Jesus Boogie," originally performed by Simpson's first band, Sunday Valley, and two previously unreleased songs, "Tennessee" and "Hobo Cartoon," the latter of which was co-written with the incomparable Merle Haggard—who once said that Simpson was "about the only thing I've heard that was worth listening to in a long time."
Cuttin' Grass Vol. 1 (Butcher Shoppe Sessions) is now available on Vinyl & CD.
Esther Rose was in perpetual motion when she wrote How Many Times. In the span of two years, she moved three times, navigated the end of a relationship, and began touring more than ever. The New Orleans-based singer-songwriter used that momentum while she penned her third studio album. That's why, as the album title's nod to the cyclical nature of life implies, there's a rush that accompanies How Many Times as if you're experiencing an awakening, too.
With the integrity of Dean Johnson, Faustina Masigat, and Kiki Cavazos serving as primary influences, Rose expands her alt-country sound into a blossoming world of folk pop, rustic americana, and tender harmonies. A collection of complete takes recorded live to tape with rich instrumentation, soul-tugging hooks, and resonating vocal melodies, How Many Times carries you into the room in which it was made. There to help realize this was co-producer Ross Farbe of synthpop band Video Age, who Rose also credits for bringing a stereo pop glow to these new songs. From opening for Nick Lowe on tour to being asked to sing on Jack White's latest album, Rose's journey through the past few years has been one of saying yes to new opportunities, all while nurturing and playing in bands in the New Orleans country music scene. The arrival of How Many Times is evidence of the sweeping growth Rose has undergone, both personally and artistically. She's turning towards her troubles and facing them head-on, ready to feel whatever's necessary in order to keep growing upwards and outwards.
Produced by Jack Splash (Kendrick Lamar, Alicia Keys, John Legend) and Valerie June, the new album The Moon and Stars: Prescriptions for Dreamers achieves a transcendent effect thanks in no small part to the splendor of its sound, an exquisitely composed tapestry of folk, soul, gospel, country, blues, psychedelia, and time-bending symphonic pop. The result is a selection of songs both ornate and elegant, each moment crafted with a profound awareness of what’s most essential in creating enduring beauty. The follow-up to Valerie June’s widely adored The Order of Time—a 2017 effort that earned the admiration of Bob Dylan and landed on best-of-the-year lists from the likes of Rolling Stone and the New York Times— The Moon and Stars: Prescriptions for Dreamers is a potent catalyst for that kind of magic. With her spellbinding vocals and infectious sense of wonder, Valerie June gently eases the listener into a far more charmed state of mind, one that quickly restores a powerful feeling of joyful possibility.
if i could make it go quiet, the debut album from girl in red, is the musical distillation of Marie Ulven’s solitary conversations on the road: it’s an album brimming with the things we wish we could say to others, but tell ourselves instead. The album is girl in red in its purest, elevated form. She has never been braver, and the music follows suit, whether it’s collaborating with pop mastermind and Billie Eilish collaborator FINNEAS on “Serotonin,” a huge pop anthem that speaks to Ulven’s struggles with mental health, or flexing her instrumental chops with album closer “it would feel like this.” Betrayal, lust, longing, pulling herself out of a depressive spell -- nothing is off-limits on if i could make it go quiet.
“I really poured my heart into a lot of these lyrics, fully,” she says. “I just feel like I emptied myself in this album.”
Following the success of her 2019 GRAMMY®-nominated album “Norman Fucking Rockwell”, Lana Del Rey will release her highly anticipated, seventh studio album on March 19th, 2021. Chemtrails Over The Country Club features eleven songs, including singles “Let Me Love You Like A Woman” and the title-track “Chemtrails Over The Country Club”.
Vinyl: $22.98 Buy
The Million Masks of God showcases the strength and boundary-pushing invention of Manchester Orchestra’s catalog, and is a testament to the kinship of its songwriting duo—the bond that enables them to take something so tragically personal and turn it into limitless, compassionate, communal, revelatory art.
WE ARE is a career-changing album from musician and activist Jon Batiste. WE ARE celebrates Black American culture and music while exploring themes of lineage, authenticity, excellence and evolution. This album is about honoring roots and traditions, while looking forward to the future and constantly evolving. Featuring Mavis Staples, Zadie Smith, PJ Morton, Trombone Shorty, Kizzo, Autumn Rowe, Steve Jordan, and many more...