Today’s New Albums: Paul McCartney, Phish, Maggie Rogers & Vintage League
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 Paul McCartney, Phish, Maggie Rogers and Vintage League Music. Read on for more insight into the records we have all queued up to spin.
Paul McCartney – McCartney III
The Scoop: Paul McCartney releases his solo album McCartney III today via Capitol Records. While McCartney III follows the iconic artist’s 2018 album Egypt Station, Macca produced McCartney III himself during “Rockdown” at his farm in Sussex, UK in the style of his previous self-titled LPs, his 1970 solo debut McCartney and 1980’s McCartney II. In the vein of those records, Paul plays every instrument himself on McCartney III. He began with live takes on vocals, guitar and piano. Then the multi-talented musician built upon the initial tracks by overdubbing bass, drums and more. McCartney used a number of notable instruments including his iconic Hofner violin bass, a standup that belonged to Elvis’ bass player Bill Black, a mellotron from the famed Abbey Road Studios used in Beatles recordings and more.
“Each day I’d start recording with the instrument I wrote the song on and then gradually layer it all up; it was a lot of fun,” Paul said in a recent statement. “It was about making music for yourself rather than making music that has to do a job,” he added. “So, I just did stuff I fancied doing. I had no idea this would end up as an album.”
The inspiration to return to his self-titled series came when Macca revisited an unreleased track from the 1990s produced by legendary Beatles engineer George Martin called “When Winter Comes.” Paul created a new passage for the song which grew into the album opener, “Long Tailed Winter Bird.” The original “When Winter Comes,” featuring a new intro dubbed “Winter Bird,” bookends the album.
Phish – Bozeman 1994
The Scoop: A busy year of Phish live archival releases continues today with the drop of Bozeman 1994. The latest installment in the band’s Live Phish series features an official recording of Phish’s November 28, 1994 performance at Brick Breeden Fieldhouse on the campus of Montana State University in Bozeman, Montana. Phish’s visit to Bozeman marked their first ever show in Montana and they’ve yet to return to Big Sky Country following a 1995 concert in Missoula. The centerpiece of Bozeman 1994 is a “Tweezer” that spans nearly 45 minutes and features a “Digital Delay Loop Jam.” Bozeman 1994 is now available for download via LivePhish.com and for streaming by LivePhish+ subscribers.
Maggie Rogers – Notes From The Archive: Recordings 2011 – 2016
The Scoop: Singer-songwriter Maggie Rogers takes a 16-track retrospective look back at the early part of her career with Notes From The Archive: Recordings 2011 – 2016. The compilation is the first release on Rogers’ record label, Debay Sounds (via Caroline). The album contains newly remastered versions of tracks from Rogers’ early albums Blood Ballet and The Echo, alongside six never-before-heard songs. The tracklist was sequenced in reverse chronological order “to showcase each distinct stage of her creative development.” Rogers stated the following regarding the archival release:
So much of this record is about the process. It’s about honoring the time it takes to come to a full form … I wanted to give you the chance to hear me grow and hear me make mistakes, hear me change — because all of those pieces are really beautiful parts of my present, and I don’t feel complete without them in the world. I’ve known for a long time that this is something I had to do before I put out another record, because there’s a part of me that’s so deeply missing from the story right now: the 10 years of work that have led up to this moment. I have a whole body of work that I don’t want to leave behind. This record feels like honoring that work, putting the pieces of the story back together, finding my way from bisected to whole. Now, I’ve finally been given the space to let ideas develop and let myself develop. And as I’ve been working on a new record, I see the pieces all coming together and coming full circle.
Vintage League Music – Family Album Vol. 1
The Scoop: 2020 has been a big year for Vintage League Music, a label co-founded by Soulive’s Alan Evans with label partner Robert Fleming. Evans compiled all new music from various VLM artists for Vintage League Music Family Album Vol. 1, out today from the label. The 10-track release contains songs from Alan Evans, The Natural Soul (featuring Matt Schofield), The BT ALC Big Band (featuring John Medeski), Crowd Company, On The Spot Trio, the Alan Evans Trio, Kris Yunker (featuring Will Bernard and Mike Dillon), Crushed Velvet & The Velveteers (featuring Neal Evans), Jonny Trauma & The B3 Kings (featuring Jesse Dee) and Brother Goodlove. Alan Evans mixed, mastered and oversaw the project from his Iron Wax Studios facility.
Compiled by Scott Bernstein, Nate Todd and Andy Kahn.