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Music Releases 01-20-23

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Describing their first three albums as a trilogy that is now complete, Meath and Sanborn see No Rules Sandy as the beginning of a new period, with songs that are “wilder and stranger and more cathartic than the band used to be,” as Nick Sanborn puts it. “It feels like who we actually are,” Amelia Meath adds. “It just feels like us. We’re not trying to fit into the mold, just happily being our freak selves.”

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Cruel Country–Wilco’s universally-acclaimed 12th studio album will be available for the first time on vinyl and in a standard retail CD format via dBpm Records on January 20th. The double-disc packages are comprised of 21 Country Music inspired tracks, recorded at the band’s Chicago studio–The Loft.

Originally released in May 2022 (digital only) and in a limited “pre-release” CD edition for the June RSD drop, lead tracks “Falling Apart (Right Now)” and “Tired Of Taking It Out On You” have already become staples on non-commercial, public and AAA radio. Cruel Country songs and graphics have been featured throughout the band’s June European tour and August/September/October North American tour.

A new music video for “A Lifetime To Find” will be released in conjunction with the pre-order announcement.

Bandleader Jeff Tweedy has commented a length on the concept and recording process of Cruel Country in numerous podcasts, online interviews and print articles:

“There have been elements of Country Music in everything we’ve ever done. We’ve never been particularly comfortable with accepting that definition, the idea that I was making Country Music. But now, having been around the block a few times, we’re finding it exhilarating to free ourselves within the form, and embrace the simple limitation of calling the music we’re making Country.”

Jon Pareles in The New York Times wrote: “Wilco makes an understated magnum opus. Its tone is naturalistic and understated; the album was recorded largely with Wilco playing live in the studio as a six-man band, quietly savoring the chance to make music together after pandemic isolation.”

Jon Dolan in Rolling Stone wrote: “Their latest is a beautifully rootsy album with a broken sense of patriotic concern.” ****

Tagged in multiple publications’ mid-summer Best of Albums of 2022 (so far) Lists including
Variety, Rolling Stone, Spin, Uproxx and Paste.

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Mac DeMarco

Five Easy Hot Dogs

CD: $13.49 UNAVAILABLE

“The plan was to start driving north and not go home to Los Angeles until I was done with a record,” Five Easy Hot Dogs is a collection of instrumental recordings from Mac’s time on the road. “Kind of like being on tour, except there weren’t any shows and I’d just be burning money.” All of the songs on Five Easy Hot Dogs were recorded and mixed in the corresponding city from each song title and the tracklisting reflects the chronological order in which the songs were produced.

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Darker and more danceable and demonic than 2021’s “Huffy,” We Are Scientists’ new album “Lobes” features the singles Operator Error, Settled Accounts & Less From You. On their second self-produced outing, the band’s assurance and perversion have blossomed. Limited edition, 140g Cathode Blue translucent vinyl available exclusively for indie record stores.

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Beauty, disposability and fragility of the culture that surrounds us, and the exhilaration of freeing yourself from those structures… these are the themes Ladytron return to on Time’s Arrow, their seventh album.

Driven by analogue synths, distorted chimes and hallucinogenic soundscapes, Ladytron crash-landed into electroclash at the turn of the century, using the dancefloor as a bridgehead to the collective unconscious.  On Time’s Arrow the group add new richness, distant shimmers and a shoegaze-adjacent glow with Helen Marnie and Mira Aroyo’s trademark understated voices now inhabiting a space somewhere between cloudscape and dream.

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Rowntree came to prominence as a founding member of the rock band BLUR, one of the most successful British bands of the last two decades, Blur have won a total of five BRIT Awards, and were twice nominated for the Mercury Music Award.

Announcing their debut album Leisure in 1991, Blur continued to revolutionise the sound of English popular music with second release Modern Life Is Rubbish (1993). Five successive UK #1 albums followed - with Parklife (1994) and The Great Escape (1995) helping to propel the band to mass popularity in the UK and beyond. The eponymous Blur was released in 1997 and seventh album Think Tank (2003). In 2015 the band returned with The Magic Whip It was the band's first studio album in 12 years.The album received acclaim from music critics. It debuted at number one on the UK Albums Chart, marking Blur's sixth UK number-one album. It has been certified Gold.

In recent years, his film and TV composing work has included soundtracks for Netflix sci-fi series The One and BBC One’s technological crime thriller The Capture.
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