Hey gang, hope the weekend's festivities didn't leave you too obliterated. We've got some killer records this week that, whether you need to keep mellow as the semester winds to a close or amp yourself up to go out in flames, should provide your fix. Let's get right to it.
The English craftsman of neo soul himself, James Blake, has finally released the highly anticipated follow-up to his acclaimed self-titled, Overgrown. Featuring production from none other than the ambient overlord Brian Eno himself, Overgrown maintains the ebbing quality of the previous record while opening up space for more confessional vocal performances from Blake. Fans of his previous outing will only find more to fall in love with here.
Back with another solo offering, Steve Mason, aka front man of England's experimental Brit-pop extraordinaires the Beta Band, has even more ethereal everyman observations up his sleeve on Monkey Minds In the Devils Time. Experimenting with samples, washed out keyboards, and of course his tastefully strummed acoustic, Mason blends the human and the otherworldly into a wonderfully melancholy blend that always feels universally relatable.
Lastly, the kings of the alternative nation themselves The Flaming Lips have proven that being signed to a major label is no excuse to stop pushing boundaries. The Terror is perhaps the most abstract record the Lips have committed to tape, with nervous ambiance and glitched out jams dominating the record. It's a despairing listen that conjures up some of the Lips more orchestral work, but even through the darkest stretches, the mastery of mood the Lips have accomplished here is a joy in itself.
Other additions include:
* Ghost on Ghost, Iron & Wine.
* Sub Verses, Akron/Family.
* Rat Farm, Meat Puppets.
-- Sam Goldner is the music director at Radio 1190