New Music Monday – 7/4/16

This week’s New Music Monday marks the 5th installment of this regular feature, which will always include embedded music so it’s easy to listen and easy to click through to learn more about the artists. Check out our previous posts here. Enjoy.

Blood Orange
New York City
“Augustine” from Freetown Sound

Freetown Sound, a nod to his father’s birthplace in Sierra Leone, finds Devonte Hynes (aka Blood Orange) grappling with what it means to be Black in today’s world. Musically, there are no rules or boundaries; he combines 80’s R&B (with obvious nods to Michael Jackson) with funk, jazz, hip-hop, spoken word and African elements -often in the same song. Lyrically, Freetown Sound is to 2016 what Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp a Butterfly was to 2015, yet Hynes manages to soothe and unite while still shining a light on oppression and inequality. Key tracks: “Augustine”, “EVP”, “Hands Up”, Love Ya”. Check out the full album. – Kayne

Shovels & Rope
Charleston, SC
“I Know” from the forthcoming album Little Seeds, out October 7th on New West Records

Blistering isn’t a word I’ve often used to describe Shovels & Rope, but the lead single off of their third studio album (which comes out this fall) is a welcome departure for them. It’s a tale of two bands on the rise together who become mired in jealousy and spite, and at first listen I thought, “This sounds like a J Roddy Walston song.” It’s not, but it’s a ramp up on the rock ladder for the duo in a really good way! – Kayne

Nice As Fuck
Los Angeles
“Door” from Nice As Fuck, out now.

This is a weird one. A new trio fronted by Jenny Lewis, instrumentation is minimal bass/drum post punk with occasional synth. Sounds great to me, headed toward the sound of Lewis’ own Rilo Kiley at times, which is a good thing. A very, very, good thing. Listen to the full album on Spotify. – Tom

Deep in the Well out now on Learning Curve Records

They call it “swamp-groove psych-raunch”, I call it very well done classic Australian noise rock, in the vein of Nick Cave. – Tom

San Francisco
“The Devil and his Anarchic Surrealist Retinue” from The Magic, out now on Polyvinyl Records

Singular and stunningly original, no one sounds like Deerhoof, often including Deerhoof themselves, changing sound drastically between albums. As usual, this album (stream it on Spotify here) will take some repeated listening to really grab hold, but I suspect that effort will be well rewarded. The sound is hard to put into words, so give this track a listen — if you don’t hate it, dig deeper into their catalog and hold on. – Tom

Charleston, S.C.
“Chillin’ On The Beach With My Best Friend Jesus Christ”

Justin Orborne and SUSTO have recorded a number of gorgeous songs exploring the complexities of Christianity in the South, and now they’ve deliriously amped up the irony with this fresh new track. I can’t wait to see where this leads. – bill

Jon Waits and Brian Halloran
“HAPPY in the Love” from the forthcoming film Happy: A Small Film with a Big Smile

This rich, evocative new song by Jon Waits (of Waits & Co.) and Brian Halloran (W8ing4UFOS, Smoke, Opal Foxx Quartet) was inspired by artist Leonard ‘Porkchop’ Zimmerman, the subject of the documentary HAPPY: A Small Film With A Big Smile. The film will premiere in Augusta, Georgia on July 16th. Click here for details from the doc’s GoFundMe page. – bill

Jake Bugg
Nottingham, England
On My One, now available on Virgin EMI Records in the UK and Island Records in the US

Jake Bugg’s third album has been roundly criticized for forays into sort-of-rapping on tracks like “Gimme The Love” and “Ain’t No Rhyme”, but, hey, the kid just turned 22. Why not try out different voices and channel disparate influences? Bugg and On My One (slang for “on my own”) feel most at home, however, on the familiar ground of soulful ballads (like the title track) and songs that explore the previous albums’ boundaries with more subtlety, like the American country-influenced “Livin Up Country”. In 2014, Bugg said that he’d like to make a country album; bring it on. – bill