Today’s New Albums: Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats, Neal Francis, Radiohead + More
ABBA and Justin Mazer also have new music out today.
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 Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats, Neal Francis, Radiohead, ABBA and Justin Mazer. Read on for more insight into the records we have all queued up to spin.
Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats – The Future
The Scoop: Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats return with their first studio album in three years, The Future, out now via Stax Records. The new LP follows Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats’ 2018 album Tearing At The Seams, although Rateliff put out a solo record, And It’s Still Alright…, in 2020. Nathaniel teamed back up with his And It’s Still Alright… production team of the Night Sweats’ Patrick Meese and Beach House’s James Barone, collectively known as R.M.B. to co-produce The Future with Brad Cook (Bon Iver, Kevin Morby, The War on Drugs). Singer-songwriter Jenny Lewis, Lucius’ Jess Wolfe and Sylvan Esso’s Amelia Meath also contributed vocals. Additional production comes from Elijah Thompson (Father John Misty, Richard Swift).
“I look at the album overall as a big question,” Rateliff said in a press release. “When I was writing the record we were in the middle of a pandemic and our future looked pretty bleak. I just continue to try to write from a place of hope. Then my own neurosis, and maybe being a libra gets in the way, and I can’t make up my mind. There is this constant back and forth battle in me personally and I am sure that comes out in my writing.”
Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats previewed The Future with the single “Survivor” followed by “Love Don’t” and “What If I” featuring Wolfe and Lewis.
Neal Francis – In Plain Sight
The Scoop: Keyboardist Neal Francis recorded his new album, In Plain Sight, at the parsonage of St. Peter’s UCC church on Chicago’s Westside were he lived for more than year, including part of the pandemic. Out today on ATO Records, the new record serves as the follow-up his 2019 full length debut, Changes. Francis was joined at the church recording sessions by guitarist Kellen Boersma, bassist Mike Starr and drummer Collin O’Brien. Tracked to analog tape, the sessions were produced by Sergio Rios, who also worked on Changes. The album was then mixed by Grammy Award-winner Dave Fridmann. Guests include Derek Trucks who added slide guitar to “Can’t Stop The Rain,” along with several tracks featuring vocalists Carlile and Allie Bradford, Tramaine Parker & Brandon Lampkin.
“Because I was forced into this almost monastic existence and was alone so much of the time, I could play as often and as long as I wanted,” Francis stated. “I ended up becoming such a better pianist, a better writer, a better reader of music. When I started the process of writing these songs, I was so emotionally out-of-sorts and really kind of hopeless that I’d be able to come up with anything. But then I sat down and started working, and embraced whatever inspiration came my way. Sometimes it felt like beating my head against a wall, but I tried to trust that it would lead somewhere. The whole thing was like a weird dream—this very strange time of terrible, wonderful isolation.”
Radiohead – Kid A Mnesia
The Scoop: Radiohead’s seminal albums, Kid A and Amnesiac, have been reiussed today by XL Recordings as Kid A Mnesia. Both 2000’s Kid A and 2001’s Amnesiac were recorded at the same 1999 and 2000 sessions with producer Nigel Godrich. Kid Amnesiae consists of “unearthed material” from those sessions along with “alternate versions and elements of Kid A and Amnesiac album tracks and B-Sides.” Kid A Mnesia is available in a variety of formats, including Deluxe vinyl LP, a limited edition cassette version (Kid Amnesiette), as well as digital, CD and red and black 3LP vinyl editions.
ABBA – Voyage
The Scoop: Swedish pop stars ABBA have reunited after 40 years for a new album and concert film both titled Voyage. The new LP follows ABBA’s 1981 album The Visitors. Benny Anderson, Anni-Frid Lyngstad, Agnetha Fältskog and Björn Kristian Ulvaeus took to Anderson’s studio in Stockholm to work on the new record.
“When we got back together in the studio I had no idea what to expect,” Agnetha Fältskog said in a press release about making the album. “But Benny’s recording studio is such a friendly and safe environment, and before I knew it I was really enjoying myself! I can hardly believe that finally, the moment has come to share this with the world!”
“Those first sessions back in 2018 were such fun and when Benny called and asked if I’d consider singing some more I jumped at it,” Anni-Frid Lyngstad added. “And what songs!! My respect and love go out to these exceptionally talented, truly genius songwriters! Such joy it was to work with the group again. I am so happy with what we have made, and I dearly hope our fans feel the same.”
ABBA previewed their first album in 40 years with the singles “I Still Have Faith In You,” “Don’t Shut Me Down” and “Just A Notion.”
Justin Mazer – The Dream Killer Suite
The Scoop: Philadelphia-based guitarist Justin Mazer today released The Dream Killer Suite (TDKS), his third album of 2021. The record features a seven-part, 31-minute instrumental suite. The single piece of music has been divided into three tracks for digital release.
Mazer wrote and recorded The Dream Killer Suite over the past year and a half at South Philadelphia’s Writtenhouse Records facility. Justin provided the bulk of the instrumentation, while David Butler (Marco Benevento, Guster) tracked his drum parts remotely and Mike Vivas sprinkled in keyboard and synth. Vivas engineered The Dream Killer Suite and handled production with Mazer.
“TDKS can best be described as a Nordic-inspired prog-rock opera, complete with multiple freak out fuzz guitar solos, animalistic drumming, odd time signatures, a soundscape section and various kinds of movements within,” Justin Mazer explained. “Potentially more demanding for the listener than my prior releases, but I am optimistic you will achieve some kind of payoff for taking the journey with me.”
Compiled by Scott Bernstein, Nate Todd and Andy Kahn.