New Music Review 9.10.13

Arctic MonkeysLots of good stuff to review this week… Here’s what we zoomed in on: Arctic Monkeys AM, Goldfrapp Tales Of Us, The Clash – Sound System (Box Set), and The Weeknd Kiss Land.

Arctic Monkeys – AM (Domino) – Arctic Monkeys continue to prove wrong all the naysayers who said they’d only be a one-hit-winder. Probing new musical ground once again, Alex Turner and the boys have found an interesting sound this time around that’s more psychedelic, introspective and layered, but keeps the classic rock influences in the mix. Seems all the time they’ve spent out in the desert in Joshua Tree, CA has paid off.

Video: “Do I Want To Know?”:

GoldfrappTales Of Us (Mute) Alison Goldfrapp is back with her latest collection of songs documenting various stages of heartbreak and longing, and all the tunes are all named after people. The vibe is mellower this time around, and the beautifully lush production, including timpani drums and orchestral strings, contributes nicely to the dramatic feel of the record, and Alison’s breathy vocals really nail the emotional content of the lyrics.

Video: “Drew”:

The Clash – Sound System”(Box Set) (Sony Legacy) – OK it’s The Clash, one of the greatest, most ground-breaking and important bands of all-time, so do I really need to tell you what this sounds like?  Instead, I’ll tell you that it includes just about everything you could ever want from The Clash.  There are 12 discs here, collecting ALL of the band’s works re-mastered and sounding amazing, plus demos, non-album singles, rarities and B-sides, and a DVD of previously unseen footage. If you can afford it, get it now. You won’t be disappointed!

Video: “Sound System Trailer”:

The Weeknd – Kiss Land (Universal/Republic) – The Weeknd’s main man, Abel Tesfaye, seems to be warning the youth of today about the perils of seeking fame and fortune on his new record, and even Drake’s guest appearance halfway through doesn’t do much to perk up the vibe. There’s a cold, futuristic feel to the tracks, which are tense and foreboding throughout. Not easy listening or party music, but it does have depth and emotion that is sorely lacking in most of today’s pop music.

Video: “Kiss Land”:

Other Notable Releases:

Trombone Shorty – Say That To Say This (Verve)

Drive-By TruckersAlabama Ass Whuppin’ (Caroline)

MinistryFrom Beer To Eternity (AFM)

Man ManOn Oni Pond (Anti)

Mark Reback for The Independent FM