Release Day Picks: March 3rd 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 Temples, Bela Fleck, Grandaddy, Natalie Cressman, Minus the Bear and Soule Monde. Read on for more insight into the records we have all queued up to spin.


Temples – Volcano

The Scoop: U.K.-based rock band Temples made noise, both literally and with critical acclaim, following the 2014 release of their standout debut album Sun Structures. The foursome of guitarists James Bagshaw and Adam Smith, bassist Thomas Walmsley and drummer Samuel Toms tracked Volcano at their home studio. Bagshaw produced the 12 songs on the new record, which he described as “really just a result of implementing a load of things that we didn’t know about the first time around.” Give a listen to the LP’s opening track “Certainty” below:

https://soundcloud.com/templesofficial/temples-certainty

Label: Fat Possum

Producer: James Bagshaw

Number Of Tracks: 12

Running Time: 48:55

Guest Musicians: N/A

Tracklist:

  1. Certainty
  2. All Join In
  3. (I Want to Be Your) Mirror
  4. Oh the Saviour
  5. Born into the Sunset
  6. How Would You Like to Go?
  7. Open Air
  8. In My Pocket
  9. Celebration
  10. Mystery of Pop
  11. Roman Godlike Man
  12. Strange or Be Forgotten

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Bela Fleck – Juno Concerto

The Scoop: Partly live, partly recorded in the studio, banjo master Bela Fleck delves back into classical music with his new collaborative Juno Concerto. The three-movement piece was named after Fleck’s son Juno who was recently born to Bela and his wife Abigail Washburn. “Every note of the concerto is colored by the experience of being a new father, and how that has changed what is important to me as a person, as well as what I wish to express through music,” said Fleck. The concerto for banjo and orchestra was recorded live with the Colorado Symphony conducted by José Luis Gomez. Also included is the companion work “Griff” which features the string quartet Brooklyn Rider. The new release also finds Brookly Rider with Fleck on the first-ever recording of the second movement of 1984’s “Quintet for Banjo and Strings,” which was co-written with Bela’s regular collaborator Edgar Meyer and marked Fleck’s first attempt at composing classical music. Here’s the “Audition Reel” video shared by Bela promoting the classical album:

Label: Rounder Records

Number Of Tracks: 5

Running Time: 50:57

Guest Musicians: Colorado Symphony conducted by José Luis Gomez, Brooklyn Ryder

Tracklist:

  1. Juno Concerto: Movement I (Bela Fleck, Colorado Symphony)
  2. Juno Concerto: Movement II (Bela Fleck, Colorado Symphony)
  3. Juno Concerto: Movement III (Bela Fleck, Colorado Symphony)
  4. Griff (Bela Fleck, Brooklyn Rider)
  5. Quintet For Banjo And Strings: Movement II (Bela Fleck, Brooklyn Rider)

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Grandaddy – Last Place

The Scoop: It’s rare that a band takes a decade-plus off to return with a studio album that stands alongside their best-known work, but you can now add Grandaddy to that hypothetical list that some hip website is likely furiously working on right now. Last Place finds Jason Lytle & Co. picking up where they left off back in 2006 with their glitchy “future-folk” The Beach Boys-meets-Radiohead sound. The 12 tracks shimmer with beautiful harmonies and just like they did ten or so years ago seem to sound like they have been recorded in some undetermined time decades from now. Just below the surface, the songs find Lytle still working through some heavyhearted and introspective topics – divorce, technology and depression – much like a modern-day Brian Wilson. Check out the video for “A Lost Machine”:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2w8gxStEaic

Label: 30th Century Records/Columbia

Producer: Jason Lytle

Number Of Tracks: 12

Running Time: 43:54

Guest Musicians: N/A

Tracklist:

  1. Way We Won’t
  2. Brush with the Wild
  3. Evermore
  4. Oh She Deleter
  5. The Boat is in the Barn
  6. Chek Injin
  7. I Don’t Wanns Live Here Anymore
  8. That’s What You Get For Gettin’ Out of Bed
  9. This is the Part
  10. Jed the 4th
  11. A Lost Machine
  12. Songbird Son

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Natalie Cressman – The Traces EP

The Scoop: Trey Anastasio Band trombonist/vocalist Natalie Cressman wrote the five original songs making up her new EP. The multi-talented musician also prepared the string arrangements on the record that Cressman co-produced with Ivan Jackson. Regular collaborator, guitarist Mike Bono, appears alongside Cressman as does bassist Jonathan Stein who also contributed additional production to a song. Others who joined Cressman on various tracks included drummers Mark Whitfield and Conor Rayne, keyboardist Samora Pinderhughes and violinist/violist Dora Kim. Here’s “Wind Of Whims”:

Label: Self-released

Producer: Natalie Cressman, Ivan Jackson, Jonathan Stein

Number Of Tracks: 5

Running Time: 19:48

Guest Musicians: Mike Bono, Mark Whitfield, Conor Rayne, Jonathan Stein, Samora Pinderhughes Dora Kim

Tracklist:

  1. Radio Silence
  2. Wind Of Whims
  3. Love Me Blind
  4. Where We Started
  5. Traces

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Minus The Bear – VOIDS

The Scoop: While Minus The Bear hasn’t been missing in action as long as Grandaddy, the Seattle indie-rockers hadn’t released an album in five years until issuing VOIDS today. While much has changed in the music world since 2012, the band also went through a lineup change as they parted ways with original drummer Erin Tate and returned to original label Suicide Squeeze Records. With VOIDS, Minus The Bear aims to hold true to their signature brand of rock that has evolved over 16 years including hints of good old Seattle grunge and math-rock. Listen to “Invisible,” the first single off Voids:

Label: Suicide Squeeze Records

Producer: Sam Bell

Number Of Tracks: 10

Running Time: 46:08

Guest Musicians: N/A

Tracklist:

  1. Last Kiss
  2. Give & Take
  3. Call The Cops
  4. Invisible
  5. What About The Boat
  6. Silver
  7. Tame Beasts
  8. Erase
  9. Robotic Heart
  10. Lighthouse

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Soule Monde – Must Be Nice

The Scoop: Trey Anastasio Band drummer Russ Lawton and keyboardist Ray Paczkowski are back with the latest release from their Soule Monde project. In 2015 the duo issued the EP Smashed World but last released a full-length via their 2012 self-titled effort. Must Be Nice was engineered and mixed by regular collaborator Bennett Shapiro, with sessions held at his Lovetown Studio in Middlesex, Vermont. Ben Collette was charged with mastering the record which he handled at The Tank Studio in Burlington. Watch the video for “Rocket” below:

Label: Ropeadope Records

Producer: Soule Monde

Number Of Tracks: 8

Running Time: 44:25

Guest Musicians: N/A

Tracklist:

  1. Immigrant Too
  2. Rocket
  3. Take My Hand
  4. Compared to Jody
  5. Kota
  6. Mina
  7. Took You Long Enough
  8. Influence

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Compiled by Jeffrey Greenblatt, Andy Kahn and Scott Bernstein.