Don’t Miss New Albums From The Smile, Sarah Jarosz, Ty Segall & Future Islands

Check out new music available today, Friday, January 26.

By Team JamBase Jan 26, 2024 7:34 am PST

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 The Smile, Sarah Jarosz, Ty Segall and Future Islands. Read on for more insight into the records we have ready to spin.


The Smile – Wall Of Eyes

The Smile issued their sophomore album, Wall Of Eyes, today through XL Recordings. The trio featuring Radiohead‘s Thom Yorke and Jonny Greenwood and Sons of Kemet’s Tom Skinner recorded Wall Of Eyes with producer Sam Petts-Davies in Oxford and at Abbey Road Studios in London. Wall Of Eyes is The Smile’s second album and follows their 2022 debut full-length, A Light For Attracting Attention. The eight-song release features the previously shared track, “Bending Hectic,” string arrangements by London Contemporary Orchestra and saxophone by Robert Stillman.


Sarah Jarosz – Polaroid Lovers

Singer-songwriter Sarah Jarosz released her seventh studio album, Polaroid Lovers, through Rounder Records. Produced by Daniel Tashian, Jarosz recorded the album at Nashville’s Sound Emporium facility with her husband, bassist Jeff Picker, as well as guitarist Rob McNelley, guitarist/organist Tom Bukovac and drummer Fred Eltringham. Jarosz created the follow-up to her 2021 album Blue Heron Suite during a period of change as she moved from her longtime home of New York City to Nashville. Jarosz’s music also shifted to more electric-based sounds than the acoustic tones for which she’s best known. Polaroid Lovers finds Jarosz singing about short-lived moments that make a major impression on one’s life.

“What I love about a Polaroid is that it’s capturing something so fleeting, but at the same time it makes that moment last forever,” explained Jarosz. “It made sense as a title for a record where all the songs are snapshots of different love stories, and there’s a feeling of time being expansive despite that impermanence.”


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Ty Segall – Three Bells

Multi-instrumentalist Ty Segall is back with a double album, Three Bells, which rings out today via Drag City. Segall, who is synonymous with “prolific,” has released more than 12 solo albums since 2008, including 2022’s acoustic “Hello, Hi”, and contributed to numerous other projects as well. The 15-song Three Bells features five songs with lyrics written by Segall’s wife, Denée Segall, who also sang on two tracks. Ty Segall played drums, bass, guitar and percussion, and co-produced Three Bells with Cooper Crain. Additional contributions came from members of Segall’s Freedom Band, including Emmett Kelly (bass/guitar), Ben Boye (keyboards), Mikal Cronin (bass) and Charles Moothart (drums). According to a description accompanying the album:

With Three Bells, [Ty Segall]’s created a set of his most ambitious, elastic songs, using his musical vocabulary with ever-increasing sophistication. It’s an obsessive quest for an expression that answers back to the riptide always pulling him subconsciously into the depths. Questions we all ask in our own private mirrors are faced down here — and regardless of what the mysterious “Three Bells” mean in the context of the album’s libretto, you can be assured that Ty’s ringing them for himself, and for the rest of us in turn …

Three Bells kind of goes beyond songs. The 15 of them work together as a mosaic, creating the larger work at the same time as they stand on their own. Composing the album as a piece, Ty formed certain chord shapes over and over again, making thematic material that each song moves through in its own way, building a claustrophobic/paranoia vibe, cycling bold thrusts forward into ego deaths, the one-step-forward, two-steps-back patterns framing an overriding ask: what can we do to get past the back-and-forth conversation, to arrive at a place of acceptance?


Future Islands – People Who Aren’t There Anymore

Baltimore-born foursome Future Islands return with their seventh full length studio effort, People Who Aren’t There Anymore, which landed today via 4AD. The band — frontman Samuel T. Herring, bassist/guitarist William Cashion, keyboardist Gerrit Welmers and drummer Michael Lowry — co-produced the 12-song LP with previous cohort Steve Wright, who also mixed the album with Chris Coady, who produced Future Islands’ 2014 album, Singles. The painting Fading Memory of a Face by Beedallo is depicted on the album’s cover. While making the follow up to their 2020 album, As Long as You Are, the band members experienced, “Divorce, separation, cross-country and cross-continental moves, a new birth [and] exploring new mediums.” The band further detailed the process of making People Who Aren’t There Anymore, revealing:

Herring and Cashion found themselves both pinned beneath upending breakups, with Herring unhappily returning to the room he rented in a former Baltimore punk house after spending years in Sweden with a partner, and Cashion heading west to Los Angeles after a divorce. What did it mean for Herring that he couldn’t find lasting stability, he wondered aloud in “The Thief,” or that his life seemed to be a series of loops with paradoxical dead ends? He’s living through therapy, out loud and on tape here, and he vows to keep trying. “I’ll stay, because I won’t give you up,” he sings like a mantra to and of himself – this is music for getting on with the living.

Future Islands’ other half—keyboardist Gerrit Welmers and drummer Mike Lowry—had remained in Baltimore, with Welmers becoming a new father. Their roles within the band evolved. Welmers began salvaging busted synthesizers and incorporating them into sessions, and Lowry’s expansive musical interests became central to songs for the first time. “Iris,” a crucial testimonial about trying to break hard old habits, emerged from a beat inspired by the obscure 1978 debut of Niger’s Mamman Sani, and became the fitting core of People’s emotional fulcrum, where it pivots from the past toward something better.

Future Islands have played nearly 1,500 shows – shows that have bruised bodies, frayed vocal cords, provided escapes for audiences, and healed their messengers. People Who Aren’t There Anymore is a major work from a band at an inflection point: they’re discovering new ways to experience the world, because the old ways weren’t working. That freedom has led to the most fully realized, most transparently honest statement in their 17 years as a band.


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Compiled Team JamBase.

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