Release Day Picks: May 24th New Album Highlights
Each week Release Day Picks profiles new LPs and EPs Team JamBase will be checking out on release day Friday. This week we highlight new albums by Mavis Staples, Sting, Dopapod and the Echo In The Canyon soundtrack. Read on for more insight into the records we have all queued up to spin.
Mavis Staples – We Get By
The Scoop: Back in 2016, Mavis Staples and Ben Harper collaborated on the song “Love And Trust,” for Staples’ album, Livin’ On A High Note. The pair came together again for We Get By, Staples’ 12th solo studio album that was produced by Harper, who also wrote all 11 of the record’s new songs. Harper, who joins Jeff Tweedy and M. Ward as recent producers of Staples’ albums, appears on the title track as well. “These songs are delivering such a strong message,” the 79-year-old Staples stated. “We truly need to make a change if we want this world to be better.” The We Get By cover is a photo titled, Outside Looking In, by the late photographer and Civil Rights activist Gordon Parks.
Sting – My Songs
The Scoop: Legendary bassist/vocalist Sting reimagined 15 songs from throughout his career for his latest album. My Songs, out today via Cherrytree/A&M/Interscope, contains tunes Sting wrote both for The Police and his stint as a solo artist. “My Songs is my life in songs,” Sting stated. “Some of them reconstructed, some of them refitted, some of them reframed, but all of them with a contemporary focus.” Included within are such hits as “Fields Of Gold,” “Message In A Bottle,” “Every Breath You Take,” “Shape Of My Heart” and “Roxanne.” Sting wrote liner notes in which he recalls the stories behind each song. A deluxe edition is also available with bonus tracks.
Dopapod – Emit Time
The Scoop: Last month, Dopapod returned to the live stage for the first time since 2017. The palindromically titled Emit Time also marks the band’s return to the recording studio for the first time since the release of Megagem in 2017. Sessions were held by keyboardist Eli Winderman, guitarist Rob Compa, bassist Chuck Jones and drummer Alan “Fro” Evans at Turtle Studios in Philadelphia, following initial sessions held in Colorado last December. “The attitude [in Colorado] was great, and vibes were high during the multiple recording sessions for the record,” Jones stated. “I believe I can speak for all of us when I say, we are very proud of and confident that this new album represents where Dopapod is now. Music is tight and hopefully, this release of some new and some old Dopapod music will be entertaining and enjoyable to listen to.” The quartet’s hiatus-ending show at The Capitol Theatre featured the live debuts of two of the eight tracks on Emit Time, “Numbers Need Humans” and “Never Odd Or Even.”
Various Artists – Echo In The Canyon
The Scoop: Echo In The Canyon is a new documentary directed by Andrew Slater that tells the tale of the Laurel Canyon music scene between 1965 and 1967. The soundtrack has been released via BMG today and contains 13 covers of songs by artists from that era such as The Mamas & The Papas, The Byrds and The Beach Boys interpreted by the likes of Jakob Dylan, Cat Power, Beck, Fiona Apple and Norah Jones. Slater produced the soundtrack, which also includes two tunes featuring Neil Young and one with Stephen Stills. The LP was recorded at some of the famed studios in Los Angeles where the originals were tracked, namely Sunset Sound, Western Recorders and others.
Compiled by Andy Kahn and Scott Bernstein.