Release Day Picks: March 8th New Album Highlights


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 Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe, Meat Puppets, Foals and Flight of the Conchords. Read on for more insight into the records we have all queued up to spin.

Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe – Gnomes & Badgers

The Scoop: Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe have been shifting their sound relentlessly since Denson initially put the band together in 1998. The group’s current genre-blending sound and lineup are featured on Gnomes & Badgers, an 11-track studio album out today via Seven Spheres Records. Gnomes & Badgers is KDTU’s first new recording in five years and finds Denson backed by guitarist DJ Williams, lap steel guitarist Seth Freeman, trumpeter Chris Littlefield, organist David Veith, bassist Chris Stillwell and drummer Zak Najor. Guests include legendary keyboardists Chuck Leavell and Ivan Neville as well as guitarists Anders Osborne and Lukas Nelson and multi-instrumentalist Adrian Quesada. “As a writer and a human being, I’m affected by what goes on around me,” Denson said. “I’ve always been interested in politics, and what I’m seeing now just disturbs me. I saw this idea of ‘Gnomes & Badgers’—which are the different people in the world, the different parties on the left and the right—as a great way to frame the political debate and the debate about listening to each other. Somebody needs to say something, and hopefully I can say it in a way that will make people reconsider how they think about things.”

Meat Puppets – Dusty Notes

The Scoop: For the first time since 1995, the original Meat Puppets lineup of Cris Kirkwood and Curt Kirkwood and Derick Bostrom have issued an new album together. The impetus for the reunion came after the trio reunited on stage for the first time in over two decades during their 2017 induction into the Arizona Music & Entertainment Hall of Fame. The results are featured on Dusty Notes, a 10-track collection that harkens back to their early psychelic-Americana records. The first Meat Puppets studio album featuring the original trio since 1995’s No Joke! includes contributions from keyboardist Ron Stabinsky and Curt Kirkwood’s son Elmo Kirkwood on guitar.

Foals – Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost – Part One

The Scoop: British rock band Foals return today with Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost – Part One, their first album since 2015’s What Went Down and fifth overall. The band’s sixth album, Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost – Part Two, will be issued in the fall. “We couldn’t be more excited for you to hear all the work we’ve poured ourselves into over the past 18 months,” the band wrote. “The albums which will be coming out are two halves of the same locket. They can be listened to and appreciated individually, but fundamentally, they are companion pieces. Musically, we pushed ourselves to the furthest limit. Lyrically, the songs resonate with what’s going on in the world at the moment. These songs are white flags, or mirrors, or attempts to work through the confusing times we live in … each in a different way.” The 10-track Part One marks the first music recorded by Foals since founding bassist Walter Gervers left the band.

Flight Of The Conchords – Live In London

The Scoop: Last October, HBO premiered a special from comedic duo Flight Of The Conchords entitled Live In London. An audio version of the concert is now available via Sub Pop Records. Live In London features 22 tracks including two that didn’t air on the special due to time constraints. Bret McKenzie and Jemaine Clement present a mix of material that dates back a decade to the HBO television series that introduced the Kiwis to America as well as seven new songs. At one point, the pair is joined by the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, which consists of a single musician.

Compiled by Jeffrey Greenblatt, Andy Kahn and Scott Bernstein.