Let's get right to it, shall we?
The A-Sides Hello, Hello After a lackluster cover of “Expressway to Your Heart” (it being hard to top the Soul Survivor's original version) on the poorly titled Philly-scene compilation Songs from the Sixth Borough, Philadelphia's own A-Sides final release their debut album. Rock/Pop in a style Ray Davies would no doubt approve of. Lift a few downloads from their website - I highly recommend “Park Avenue,” but “Expressway” is there too.
Mason Jennings Boneclouds I had never heard on Mason Jennings until a co-worker slipped me a copy of his 2000 release Use Your Voice. I put it in my mp3 player and was instantly hooked. Not quite alt and not quite folk, but a confident combination of the two. And the first single from the new disc, “Be Here Now,” is just as winning. I like his stuff so much, Mason now has two albums on my RIYL list. See the video for “Be Here Now” and listen to a bunch of radio appearances at his official site.
Steve Wynn & the Miracle 3 ...Tick...Tick...Tick Steve Wynn is a musical genius, it's that simple. He's still best known for fronting the seminal “paisley underground” band the Dream Syndicate in the 80's, but I've always liked his stuff with the sloppily bar-bandish Gutterball more. What I've heard so far from his new disc sounds a lot like Gutterball, but with better production. Steve gives away tons of free music on his website, including some of his new songs, but it's all live performances.
Jim & Jennie and the Pinetops Little Birdie I got this for four bucks at a used book sale while I was down in DC. Jim & Jennie have some Philly ties (the Pinetops were originally the Pine Barons, possibly a play on the Pine Barrens of South Jersey?). If you think listening to your copy of the O Brother Where Art Thou soundtrack gives you bluegrass cred, you need to listen to this. Maybe a bit too much banjo at times, but overall it's a lot of fun to listen to. They're streaming some new stuff at their myspace site, but nothing from this six-year-old album.
New additions are in GREEN.
- PAUL SIMON Surprise
- NEIL YOUNG Living With War
- NEKO CASE Fox Confessor Brings the Flood
- BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN We Shall Overcome: The Seeger Sessions
- THE A-SIDES Hello, Hello
- FLAMING LIPS At War With The Mystics
- MASON JENNINGS Boneclouds
- THE SILVER JEWS Tanglewood Numbers
- THE GO TEAM Thunder, Lightning, Strike
- THE RACONTEURS Broken Boy Soldiers
- FIELD MUSIC Field Music
- DRIVE-BY TRUCKERS A Blessing And A Curse
- WORLD PARTY Dumbing Up
- JENNY LEWIS WITH THE WATSON TWINS Rabbit Fur Coat
- MATES OF STATE Bring It Back
- RHETT MILLER The Believer
- GNARLS BARKLEY St. Elsewhere
- MARAH If You Didn't Laugh, You'd Cry
- MASON JENNINGS Use Your Voice
- LOOSE FUR Born Again In The USA
- STEVE WYNN & THE MIRACLE 3 ...Tick...Tick...Tick
- WILCO Summerteeth
- JIM & JENNIE AND THE PINETOPS Little Birdy
- JOSH ROUSE Subtitulo
- BETH ORTON Comfort Of Strangers
- SONDRE LERCHE Faces Down
- BELLE AND SEBASTIAN The Life Pursuit
- CAT POWER The Greatest
- MATTHEW SWEET AND SUSANNA HOFFS Under The Covers Volume 1
- EMMYLOU HARRIS & MARK KNOPFLER All The Roadrunning
Dropping off the list this week:
- STEPHEN MALKMUS Face The Truth
- WOOD BROTHERS Ways Not To Lose
- PRINCE 3121
- VAN MORRISON Pay The Devil