Dave Matthews Band’s ‘Walk Around The Moon’ Among Today’s New Album Releases

Leftover Salmon, Tinariwen, The Murlocs, Dave McMurray, Paul Simon, Graham Nash and more have new releases out today, Friday, May 19.

By Team JamBase May 19, 2023 6:31 am PDT

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 Dave Matthews Band, Leftover Salmon, Tinariwen, The Murlocs, Dave McMurray, Paul Simon, Graham Nash, Khruangbin and Pixie & The Partygrass Boys. Read on for more insight into the records we have all queued up to spin.

Dave Matthews Band – Walk Around The Moon

Dave Matthews Band finally issued their long-awaited 10th studio album, Walk Around The Moon, today via RCA. The 12-track collection is DMB’s first to be recorded with keyboardist Buddy Strong following the departure of Boyd Tinsley. Most songs on the follow-up to 2018’s Come Tomorrow were recorded with producer Rob Evans. DMB tapped longtime collaborator John Alagia to serve as the project’s executive producer. Alagia also contributed guitar and other instrumental work to multiple tracks.

Seven songs off Walk Around The Moon were road tested by Dave Matthews Band before the LP was announced last January. Four additional cuts from the LP, which as per press materials “took shape during the pandemic and is as much a reflection on the current times as it is an urge to find common ground,” were debuted live earlier this month in Mexico.

Leftover Salmon – Grass Roots

Jamgrass veterans Leftover Salmon explored their Grass Roots on their new studio album released today via Compass Records. Grass Roots follows Leftover Salmon’s 2021 album Brand New Good Old Days and features guest spots from Billy Strings, Oliver Wood and Darol Anger. The album sees guitarist Vince Herman, banjoist Andy Thorn, mandolinist Drew Emmitt, bassist Greg Garrison, drummer Alwyn Robinson and newest member, dobro player Jay Starling exploring “their bluegrass and festival campground origins with a set of songs that draws from the repertoires that The Salmon Heads and The Left Hand String Band played when they first jammed in a Telluride Bluegrass Festival campground.” Grass Roots features LoS covering songs by Bob Dylan, Grateful Dead, David Bromberg, Seldom Scene, Link Wray, The Delmore Brothers and more.

Tinariwen – Amatssou

Tuareg band Tinariwen released their ninth studio album, Amatssou. Tinariwen — co-founders Ibrahim Ag Alhabib, Touhami Ag Alhassane and Abdallah Ag Alhousseyni and bassist Eyadou Ag Leche, percussionist Said Ag Ayad and guitarist Elaga Ag Hamid — initially intended to record in Nashville after being invited by Jack White to use his private facility. The COVID-19 pandemic forced those plans to be scrapped, which had included working with local country musicians Wes Corbett and Fats Kaplin. Daniel Lanois was supposed to be part of those ill-fated sessions in Nashville, and after attempting to meet Tinariwen in Africa proved too difficult, the participants – Tinariwen, Lanois, Corbett and Kaplin – were left with working remotely. Using gear borrowed from fellow Tuareg band Imarhan, Tinariwen set up a makeshift recording studio in a tent at the UNESCO World Heritage Site called Djanet. Lanois tracked his parts in Los Angeles, Corbett and Kaplin (the latter playing pedal steel, violin and banjo on six of the 10 songs) recorded in Nashville and Kabyle percussionist Amar Chaoui worked out of Paris. According to press materials:

Tinariwen set out to explore the shared sensibilities between their trademark desert blues and the vibrant country music of rural America. “Amatssou” is Tamashek for “Beyond The Fear,” and it fits. Tinariwen have always been characterized by their fearlessness, single-handedly inventing a guitar style that has captured the world’s imagination. They call it ishumar or assouf (“nostalgia” in Tamashek). The rest of the world has come to know it as the Tuareg blues. It is music that is imbued with sorrow and longing but it’s also music to dance to, to forget our cares.

The Murlocs – Calm Ya Farm

Melbourne, Australia rockers The Murlocs released their album Calm Ya Farm today via ATO Records. The Murlocs consist of King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard’s Ambrose Kenny-Smith and bassist Cook Craig as well as guitarist Callum Shortal, drummer Matt Blach and keyboardist Tim Karmouche. The band captured their most collaborative LP to date at various home studios and tapped frequent collaborator John Lee to mix.

The title to the country rock-tinged Calm Ya Farm originates from “something my partner always says to me when I’m feeling stressed-out or anxious,” Ambrose revealed. “It made sense with the whole country theme of the record, but it’s generally a good reminder for day-to-day life. Now whenever I look down, I can remember to just chill out and take everything a little easier,” Kenny-Smith added presumably referring to the LP’s cover art.

Dave McMurray – Grateful Deadication 2

Saxophonist Dave McMurray resumes his exploration of the music of the Grateful Dead with today’s release of Grateful Deadication 2 through Blue Note Records. A sequel to his 2021 Grateful Dead tribute album, the nine-track Grateful Deadication 2 once again saw McMurray recording with fellow Detroit-based musicians, guitarist Wayne Gerard, keyboardist Maurice O’Neal, pianist Luis Resto, bassist Ibrahim Jones, drummer Jeff Canady and percussionist Larry Fratangelo. Guests appearing on the album include Dead & Company bassist Oteil Burbridge, country singer-songwriter Jamey Johnson, jazz keyboardist Bob James, pedal steel guitarist Greg Leisz and bassist Don Was. Both Leisz and Was perform with Burbridge’s Dead & Co bandmate, co-founding Grateful Dead guitarist Bob Weir, as part of Bobby Weir & Wolf Bros. McMurray was also a member of Was (Not Was) with Was. McMurray stated:

“My most recent journey into Grateful Dead world began when my Detroit band and I traveled to Clubhouse Studios in Upstate New York. It’s a beautiful place, surrounded by lots of open land, and filled with vintage equipment. With master engineer Elliot Scheiner in tow, and four days and nights with only creating music on the brain, the vibe was just right. The result is a dark, sparse, emotional ride into the minds of Jerry Garcia, Bob Weir, and the Grateful Dead… Detroit style.

“The [Grateful Dead’s] long-form, odd measures and complex chords of the music hooked me immediately. I noticed the songs had great melodies yet held the openness of Miles Davis’ Electric Period. The music was catchy, psychedelic, raw, with the idea that nobody solos/everybody solos—akin to Weather Report. The more I listened, the more I knew these songs would eventually become a vehicle for my jazz expression.”

Paul Simon – Seven Psalms

While Paul Simon may have retired from touring, he’s still making new music. The legendary artist put out Seven Psalms today via Owl Records and Legacy Recordings, marking his first album of all-new music since 2016. The ambitious 33-minute LP features seven movements meant to be heard in its entirety. Produced by Paul Simon and Kyle Crusham, Seven Psalms was recorded solely on acoustic instruments. Simon’s voice and instrumental work are predominant on the album which does include choral elements from VOCES8 and a vocal appearance from Paul’s wife, Edie Brickell. “This whole piece is really an argument I’m having with myself about belief … or not,” Simon said in a behind-the-scenes video documenting the making of an album dealing with spirituality.

Graham Nash – Now

Graham Nash returns today with his first studio album in seven years. Now is the follow up to the legendary singer-songwriter’s 2016’s This Path Forward along with a live album, Graham Nash: Live, documenting performances of his first two solo albums, Songs For Beginners and Wild Tales, in their entirety. Nash co-produced Now with longtime touring keyboardist Todd Caldwell.

“I believe that my new album Now is the most personal one I have ever made,” Graham stated. “At this point in my life, that’s something to say.”

Khruangbin – Khruangbin & Friends: Live at Stubb’s

Khruangbin released the first installment in a series of live albums set to roll out over the coming months. Khruangbin & Friends: Live at Stubb’s features performances by the Texas-born trio with tourmates Robert Ellis, The Suffers, Ruben Moreno and Kelly Doyle recorded live at Stubb’s in Austin, Texas. Regarding the series launched through Dead Oceans in partnership with Night Time Stories Ltd, Khruangbin — bassist Laura Lee, guitarist Mark Speer and drummer Donald “DJ” Johnson — issued the statement below:

“We toured the world for over 18 months, when global restrictions just started to slowly lift through the long anticipated end of regulations.

“From our vantage point, to watch people come together through song and dance after a time of unified isolation was truly a spiritual experience. To watch and hear audiences sing along to the songs we released during the pandemic and to feel so loved and well received was unquantifiable. We wanted to find a way to hallmark this journey and decided to do so through a series of live releases that also commemorate the artists who performed with us, as well as the artwork and photography from those shows. It was and is truly a time to remember.”

Pixie & The Partygrass Boys – The Chicken Coop, Vol. 1

Utah’s Pixie & The Partygrass Boys went the cover route for their Americana Vibes debut, The Chicken Coop, Vol. 1. The 11-track covers album features the quintet’s takes on such diverse songs as Charlie Daniels’ “The Devil Went Down To Georgia,” (reimagined as “The Devil Went Down To Utah”) Katy Perry’s “Dark Horse,” A-ha’s “Take On Me,” Vengaboys’ “We Like To Party” and disco classic “Don’t Leave Me This Way.” The band — Katia “Pixie” Racine (vocals, ukulele), Amanda Grapes (fiddle, vocals), Andrew Nelson (guitar, vocals), Ben Weiss (mandolin, vocals) and Zach Downes (bass, vocals) — enlisted fiddler Jeremy Garrett and dobroist Andy Hall of The Infamous Stringdusters for guest appearances as well as Canadian flutist Anh Phung and Colorado-based banjoist Sam Armstrong-Zickefoose.

Compiled by Scott Bernstein, Nate Todd and Andy Kahn.

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