Release Day Picks: April 7th New Album Highlights

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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 Father John Misty, The New Pornographers, Yonder Mountain String Band and Chris Thile, Edgar Meyer & Yo-Yo Ma, as well as Danger Mouse and Sam Cohen produced soundtrack compilation. Read on for more insight into the records we have all queued up to spin.


Father John Misty – Pure Comedy

The Scoop: The third LP from Joshua Tillman under the Father John Misty moniker follows up his 2015 sophomore album I Love You, Honeybear. Having previewed four of the new record’s 13 tracks already, Pure Comedy has displayed the coy wit and catchy melodies established through the first two Father John Misty albums which also includes 2012’s Fear Fun. Here’s Tillman on the album:

Pure Comedy is the story of a species born with a half-formed brain. The species’ only hope for survival, finding itself on a cruel, unpredictable rock surrounded by other species who seem far more adept at this whole thing (and to whom they are delicious), is the reliance on other, slightly older, half-formed brains. This reliance takes on a few different names as their story unfolds, like “love,” “culture,” “family,” etc. Over time, and as their brains prove to be remarkably good at inventing meaning where there is none, the species becomes the purveyor of increasingly bizarre and sophisticated ironies. These ironies are designed to help cope with the species’ loathsome vulnerability and to try and reconcile how disproportionate their imagination is to the monotony of their existence.

Here’s “Ballad of the Dying Man”:

Label: Sub Pop Records

Producer: Jonathan Wilson, Joshua Tillman

Number Of Tracks: 13

Running Time: 74:17

Guest Musicians: Gavin Bryars, Nico Muhly, Thomas Bartlett

Tracklist:

  1. Pure Comedy
  2. Total Entertainment Forever
  3. Things It Would Have Been Helpful to Know Before the Revolution Ballad of the Dying Man
  4. Birdie
  5. Leaving LA
  6. A Bigger Paper Bag
  7. When the God of Love Returns There’ll Be Hell to Pay
  8. Smoochie
  9. Two Wildly Different Perspectives
  10. The Memo
  11. So I’m Growing Old on Magic Mountain
  12. In Twenty Years or So

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The New Pornographers – Whiteout Conditions

The Scoop: At this point in their career The New Pornographers operate like a finely tuned machine. A.C. Newman & Co. have developed a secret formula in a lab somewhere that helps them to make some of the best power-pop going. Whiteout Conditions marks the bands’ seventh studio album and their first without founding member Dan Bejar (Destroyer), who had a scheduling conflict. While Bejar’s quirky contributions are missed, the 11 tracks instead double-down on swirling earworm hooks and Newman and Neko Case-led psychedelic harmonies. Check out the video for “High Ticket Attractions”:

Label: Concord Records

Number Of Tracks: 11

Running Time: 41:15

Guest Musicians: N/A

Tracklist:

  1. Play Money
  2. Whiteout Conditions
  3. High Ticket Attractions
  4. This is the World of the Theater
  5. Darling Shade
  6. Second Sleep
  7. Colosseum
  8. We’ve Been Here Before
  9. Juke
  10. Clockwise
  11. Avalanche Alley

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Chris Thile, Edger Meyer & Yo Yo Ma – Bach Trios

The Scoop: Realistically, if you put Chris Thile, Yo-Yo Ma and Edgar Meyer in a room to record a record of Nickelback covers, it would probably still sound amazing given the virtuoso musicianship and outstanding arranging talent. In this case, the trio followed up their acclaimed The Goat Rodeo Sessions by going in a totally new direction, this time opting to showcase their classical chops in the form of trio arrangements of Bach compositions primarily composed for piano or other keyboard instruments. The trio rearranged the pieces for bass, mandolin and cello and you can pretty much guess what you’re getting here: some of the world’s best musicians performing unique arrangements of baroque era classical music. Have a listen to “Bach Trio Sonata No. 6 in G Major, BWV 530: I. Vivace” off Bach Trios:

Label: Sound Postings, LLC, under license to Nonesuch Records Inc.

Producer: Chris Thile, Edger Meyer, Yo Yo Ma

Number Of Tracks: 17

Running Time: 60:44

Guest Musicians: N/A

Tracklist:

  1. Trio Sonata No. 6 in G Major
  2. I. Vivace
  3. II. Lento
  4. III. Allegro
  5. The Well-Tempered Clavier, Book I: Prelude No. 19 in A Major
  6. The Well-Tempered Clavier, Book II: Fugue No. 20 in A Minor
  7. Ich ruf zu dir, Herr Jesu Christ
  8. Prelude & Fugue in E Minor
  9. Prelude
  10. Fugue
  11. Keyboard Partita No. 5 in G Major
  12. Kommst du nun, Jesu, vom Himmel herunter
  13. Art of the Fugue, BWV 1080: Contrapunctus XIII à 3, “Rectus”
  14. Art of the Fugue, BWV 1080: Contrapunctus XIII à 3, “Inversus”
  15. Erbarm dich mein, O Herre Gott, BWV 721
  16. Sonata for Viola da Gamba No. 3 in G Minor, BWV 1029
  17. I. Vivace
  18. II. Adagio
  19. III. Allegro

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Various Artists – Resistance Radio: The Man In The High Castle

The Scoop: You don’t have to be a fan or even have seen Amazon’s original series The Man In The High Castle to appreciate the soundtrack that was put together by Danger Mouse (Brian Burton) and Sam Cohen (Yellowbirds). The duo assembled an all-star cast of indie and big name artists – Sharon Van Etten, Beck, Norah Jones, The Shins – to record songs for a fictional resistance radio station to accompany the show. The 18 tracks primarily focus on ballads recorded in 1962 or before (the year the series takes place), along with folk and blues tunes. Thanks to Burton and Cohen’s production work the album has a vintage feel that pays tribute the material while giving it an wholly original feel. Give a listen to Benjamin Booker’s take on Willie Dixon’s blues classic “Spoonful”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lOAiwiiGaLE

Label:30th Century Records/Columbia

Producer:Brian Burton (Danger Mouse), Sam Cohen

Number Of Tracks:18

Running Time:54:12

Guest Musicians:Sharon Van Etten, Andrew VanWyngarden, Beck, Benjamin Booker, Sam Cohen, The Shins, Angel Olsen, Waterstrider, Michael Kiwanuka, Grandaddy, Big Search, Kevin Morby, Kelis, Norah Jones, Curtis Harding, Maybird, Karen O

Tracklist:

  1. The End of the World
  2. Nature Boy
  3. Can’t Help Falling In Love
  4. Spoonful
  5. The House of the Rising Sun
  6. A Taste of Honey
  7. Who’s Sorry Now
  8. Speaking of Happiness
  9. Sometimes I Feel Like a Motherless Child
  10. Love Hurts
  11. Lonely Mound of Clay
  12. I Only Have Eyes for You
  13. Whose Lovin’ You
  14. Unchained Melody
  15. Lead On Me
  16. All Alone Am I
  17. Living in a Trance
  18. Get Happy

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Yonder Mountain String Band – Mountain Tracks Volume 6

The Scoop: Colorado five-piece Yonder Mountain String Band has revived the long-mothballed Mountain Tracks series of live releases. Mountain Tracks Volume 6 is the first new Mountain Tracks installment since 2008. The compilation features a mix of YMSB originals such as “Black Sheep” and “I’m Lost” with covers including “Sister Golden Hair” by America and Blind Melon’s “No Rain.” Each of the seven tracks was recorded live over the first half of 2016.

Label: Self-Released

Number Of Tracks: 7

Guest Musicians: N/A

Tracklist:

  1. Around You
  2. Black Sheep
  3. Sister Golden Hair
  4. I’m Lost
  5. Pass This Way > E.M.D. > Pass This Way
  6. No Rain
  7. Drawing A Melody > Summer In The City > Drawing A Melody

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Compiled by Jeffrey Greenblatt, Ryan Dembinsky, Andy Kahn and Scott Bernstein.