This Week’s New Releases: Suede, Rina Sawayama And The Mars Volta

This is the busiest week for new records we’ve had in a while. Suede have finally followed up 2018’s ‘The Blue Hour’, Rina Sawayama has dropped her sophomore LP, and The Mars Volta have returned with their first new album in a decade. Ringo Starr has also put out a four-track EP.

In the mood for something else? Head below.

Behemoth – ‘Opvs Contra Natvram’ (Nuclear Blast)

Bent Arcana – ‘Live Zebulon’ (Castle Face)

The Beths – ‘Expert In A Dying Field’ (Carpark)

Clutch – ‘Sunrise On Slaughter Beach’ (Weathermaker)

Creedence Clearwater Revival – ‘At The Royal Albert Hall (April 14, 1970)’ (Concord)

Death Cab For Cutie – ‘Asphalt Meadows’ (Atlantic)

The Devil Wears Prada – ‘Color Decay’ (Solid State)

Djo – ‘Decide’ (Djo/AWAL)

ELIZA – ‘A Sky Without Stars’ (LOG OFF/ Different Recordings)

Fletcher – ‘Girl Of My Dreams’ (Capitol/EMI)

Hauser – ‘The Player’ (Hauser/Masterworks/Sony Music)

Jesca Hoop – ‘Order Of Romance’ (Memphis Industries)

Jessie Reyez – ‘Yessie’ (Polydor)

Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros – ‘Joe Strummer 002: The Mescaleros Years’ (Casbah/Dark Horse/BMG)

Kings Elliot – ‘Bored Of The Circus’ EP (Verve)

Lang Lang – ‘The Disney Book’ (Deutsche Grammophon)

LeAnn Rimes – ‘God’s Work’ (EverLe Records/Thirty Tigers)

Lissie – ‘Carving Canyons’ (Lionboy)

Little Big Town – ‘Mr. Sun’ (Capitol Records Nashville/UMG)

Little Dragon – ‘Opening The Door’ EP (Ninja Tune)

Maggie Lindemann – ‘SUCKERPUNCH’ (Swixxzaudio)

Marcus Mumford – ‘(self-titled)’ (Capitol/UMG)

Marina Allen – ‘Centrifics’ (Fire Records)

The Mars Volta – ‘The Mars Volta’ (Clouds Hill)

Marxist Love Disco Ensemble – ‘MLDE’ (Mr. Bongo)

Michelle Branch – ‘The Trouble With Fever’ (Audio Eagle/Nonesuch)

Mura Masa – ‘Demon Time’ (Polydor)

NCT 127 – ‘2 Baddies’ (SM Entertainment)

No Age – ‘People Helping People’ (Drag City)

No Devotion – ‘No Oblivion’ (Equal Vision)

Noah Cyrus – ‘The Hardest Part’ (Records/Columbia)

Ondara – ‘Spanish Villager No. 3’ (Verve Forecast)

Rina Sawayama – ‘Hold The Girl’ (Dirty Hit)

Ringo Starr – ‘EP3’ (UMG)

Smith/Kotzen – ‘Better Days…And Nights (Live)’ (BMG)

Status Quo – ‘Quo’ing In – The Best Of The Noughties’ (earMUSIC)

Steve Aoki – ‘HiROQUEST: Genesis’ (DJ Kid Millionaire Ltd)

Suede – ‘Autofiction’ (BMG)

Turin Brakes – ‘Wide-Eyed Nowhere’ (Cooking Vinyl)

What So Not – ‘Anomaly’ (Counter)

Whitney – ‘Spark’ (Secretly Canadian)

Wunderhorse – ‘Cub’ (Communion)

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Video Of The Week: Clutch Unveil Grisly Video For Ghoul Wrangler From ‘Book Of Bad Decisions’ Release

Clutch have shared a beast of a video for their latest single, Ghoul Wrangler.

The track features on the Maryland rock quartet’s latest album, ‘Book of Bad Decisions’, which landed via their own Weathermaker label last September. The video, meanwhile, was shot in Old Bedford Village, Pennsylvania and sees all four members of the band getting involved. On unveiling the clip, vocalist Neil Fallon said:

“JP wears pantaloons, Dan’s got horns, and Tim throws up on my face. I’m pretty sure we all deserve Academy Awards.”

The band didn’t scoop any statues at last night’s Oscars ceremony, however they are currently cruising up and down the US in support of the new record, with support coming from Seattle’s Big Business and French band the Inspector Cluzo.

Clutch also play a handful of European dates this summer including an appearance at the UK’s Download festival. Additionally, they’ve just added a Cardiff date to their plans, confirming their return to South Wales on June 16. Tickets go on general sale at 10am on February 27, priced £25 plus fees.

Head to our music video page on the Stereoboard website for the latest video releases.

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This Week’s New Releases: Paul McCartney, Chic And Spiritualized

This week there are some big hitters coming out to play. Paul McCartney has put out his first solo record for five years, Chic and Nile Rodgers have returned with their first since 1992 and Spiritualized have finally followed up 2012’s ‘Sweet Heart Sweet Light’.

Still want more? Head below.

Adult. – ‘This Behavior’ (Dais Records)

Boston Manor – ‘Welcome To The Neighbourhood’ (Pure Noise Records)

Chic – ‘It’s About Time’ (EMI)

Chilly Gonzales – ‘Solo Piano III’ (Gentle Threat)

Clutch – ‘Book Of Bad Decisions’ (Weathermaker)

Eric Bachmann – ‘No Recover’ (Merge Records)

Happy. – ‘Cult Classic’ (Rude Records)

JEFF the Brotherhood – ‘Magick Songs’ (Caroline Interational)

Joey Purp – ‘Quarterthing’ (Joey Purp LLC)

Lenny Kravitz – ‘Raise Vibration’ (BMG)

Mirah – ‘Understanding’ (K Records)

MNEK – ‘Language’ (Virgin EMI)

Mothers – ‘Render Another Ugly Method’ (Epitaph)

Paul McCartney – ‘Egypt Station’ (Capitol)

Paul Simon – ‘In The Blue Light’ (Sony)

Rae Spoon – ‘Bodiesofwater’ (Coax Records)

Rudimental – ‘Toast To Our Differences’ (Asylum)

Ruston Kelly – ‘Dying Star’ (Decca)

Sauna Youth – ‘Deaths’ (Upset The Rhythm)

Spiritualized – ‘And Nothing Hurt’ (Bella Union)

St. Paul & the Broken Bones – ‘Young Sick Camellia’ (Columbia)

Swamp Dogg – ‘Love, Loss And Auto-Tune’ (Joyful Noise Recordings)

Teleman – ‘Family Of Aliens’ (Moshi Moshi)

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Masters At Work: Clutch Unleash Psychic Warfare On Cardiff

Clutch have just wrapped up a short run of ‘Psychic Warfare’ tour dates across the UK and Europe. Jon Stickler was in attendance at their raucous Cardiff show and here’s what he thought… 

It was beginning to look a lot like Christmas when Maryland road warriors Clutch rolled into Cardiff University as part of the final stages of their 2016 Psychic Warfare tour, bringing with them their trademark bluesy jams, pummeling riffs and groove-driven hard rock.

Openers Lionize are closely affiliated with Clutch, thanks to enlisting guitarist Tim Sult for a few albums and drummer Jean-Paul Gaster producing their last LP, and their reggae-infused funky blues was a hit with the growing crowd. Valient Thorr, meanwhile, raised fists in the air with an erratic blend of hardcore and rock ‘n’ roll.

The unstoppable force that is the Clutch live show has become the stuff of legend since their formation in the early 1990s. Uniting the tribes of rock and metal through their blue-collar, no nonsense ideology, here they burst onto the stage with Passive Restraints and The House That Peterbilt, from their earlier catalogue.

That’s before rolling up their sleeves for the faster-paced Pure Rock Fury, Sucker For The Witch, from the new record, and the one-two punch of Power Player and You Can’t Stop Progress from ‘From Beale Street to Oblivion’.

A wild-eyed Neil Fallon was up to his usual tricks and, as one of rock’s most animated lyricists, he kept the stage banter to nothing more than the expected pleasantries while throwing some of the wildest shapes around. Guitarist Sult laid down riff after riff alongside spellbinding energy and precision from bassist Dan Maines and drummer Gaster.

The set was top heavy with cuts from ‘Psychic Warfare’, with A Quick Death In Texas, Your Love Is Incarceration and Decapitation Blues also thrown in alongside The Face, from ‘Earth Rocker’, Minotaur and 50,000 Unstoppable Watts from 2009’s ‘Strange Cousins from the West’, plus cuts from the earlier ‘Robot Hive/Exodus’. A slow-burning The Regulator wound up the main set before the band tore through an encore featuring Electric Worry and X-Ray Vision.

While existing just outside of the mainstream for, astonishingly, over 25 years, Clutch remain one of a few bands who consistently capture the essence of rock in its most natural form. No need for pyrotechnics, big screens, laser shows, or even a drum riser, just four masters at work.

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Staff Picks: Alec Chillingworth


Alec’s Albums of 2015

Every now and then, a band from the murkiest cesspools of music releases an album that  transcends genre, uniting superfan and po-faced critic alike. We got Deafheaven’s ‘Sunbather’ in 2013 and last year we had Behemoth’s ‘The Satanist’. There’s been nothing quite like that this year, but Vision Of Disorder, Paradise Lost, Cradle Of Filth, Killing Joke, Enter Shikari, Russkaja, Thy Catafalque, Napalm Death, Shining and a slew of others have unleashed sonic shitstorms directly into the ears of the faithful. But here’s three records that are even better. “Better than Napalm Death?” we hear you scoff. Indeed.

Clutch – Psychic Warfare

If you don’t like Clutch then someone out there is probably watching you. Whoever they are, they’re watching you. Because ‘Psychic Warfare’ should make you adore Clutch more than you love your other half, your mum or tax rebates. This is bluesy, ballsy, life-affirming rock ‘n’ roll that makes you feel like roundhousing David Cameron and having a pop at running the country yourself, just to see what happens. Neil Fallon is at his huskiest and, lyrically, he’s bobbins. Jean-Paul Gaster does things to his drums that we can’t even print and, well, they’re the most accomplished set of musicians to ever grant CDs the honour of playing their music. Better than the old stuff. Never one-paced and never short of a good hook or 2,347637263. Joyous, endlessly replayable rock music.

Cattle Decapitation – The Anthropocene Extinction

An album dealing with mankind’s insolence and the subsequent decomposition of Earth? Sign us up. Cattle Decapitation have never been just a grindcore band and their seventh record, ‘The Anthropocene Extinction’, is testament to this. Sure, there’s the usual grind influences and the merciless, chugging death metal we’ve become accustomed to, but Travis Ryan’s contorted, strangled clean vocals through some of the choruses add a haunting catchiness to proceedings. Plagueborne has one of those “woah-oah” parts in it. Terrifying. And Circo Inhumanitas? Frosty as fuck, mate; that bit at the 2:44 mark could’ve been nicked from Ihsahn’s bedside drawer. It’s unafraid to challenge preconceptions of the genre and succeeds in surpassing said expectations. If you want to be on the cutting edge of extreme music in 2015, subject your ears to ‘The Anthropocene Extinction’.

The Armed – Untitled

Music for the person in your life who doesn’t like silence. Because ‘Untitled’ is relentless. It’s like having your head smashed against a bin while someone plays the Crash Bandicoot soundtrack through an old ham sandwich. Forever Scum and Nervewrecker sum this up best; there’s those wiry, cartoony guitar lines you’ve heard Gallows use before and then there’s the gang vocals. The drums smashing against your headphones, making you feel like you’ve done something very wrong. The seething walls of feedback whenever the instrumentation ceases. The spasmodic time signatures and loopy patterns giving Dillinger Escape Plan a run for their money. With one bubonic, bile-flecked foot in hardcore punk and the other in a puddle reminiscent of mathcore, The Armed will never be boring and will never shut up.

Alec’s Songs of 2015

I’m an albums man. The idea of sitting down and soaking in 150 minutes of Swallow The Sun excites me. To paw through the liner notes of a re-release or a special edition sends all sorts of funny sensations squirming through my skin. But sometimes I just want to smash on a three-minute banger and flail my limbs about – on the tube, in the bath, or during a funeral service. Tunes so massive you can’t help but gyrate and wiggle your finger. So this goes out to three songs which have done that to me in 2015.

Crossfaith ft. Benji Webbe – Wildfire

The best live band on the planet – except Rammstein, but they’re not really even a band, they’re just a thing that happens – joining forces with Benji Webbe, frontman of Skindred, the best live band in the UK? Alright, then. Wildfire is basically a club song. The beat drops. That pinched synth grabs your earlobes and sticks an adventurous tongue straight in, lubing you up for the electronica-tinged metal madness to ensue. Because it is madness. It shouldn’t work. No band melds party-ready beats and metal quite like Crossfaith, so adding Benji just makes it even cooler; if you’re in possession of a pair of legs, you will dance to this song until you neck too much vodka, do a wee in the street, stumble home, sleep on the floor and expunge last night from your mouth/bowels right next to the toilet bowl. Not in it. Next to it.

Russkaja – Rock ’n’ Roll Today

It’s just the happiest thing ever, right? In a world rife with poverty, pollution, corruption, war, famine and Olly Murs, it’s refreshing to have a load of Russian blokes having it large to the sound of rock ‘n’ roll, ska and polka all mashed up. If a polka/metal hybrid sounds like your bag but you find Korpiklaani a wee bit heavy, Russkaja are for you. Like being hit in the face with a bag full of balloons and five-pound notes.

Lindemann – Golden Shower

Rammstein’s Till Lindemann has always been an inherently strange man, but his ‘Skills In Pills’ album allows English-speaking fans to fully peek into that perverted mind of his. And what a mind it is. Aided by Peter Tägtgren of PAIN and Hypocrisy, Lindemann set about disgusting the world; Golden Shower’s just about done that. Tägtgren’s pummelling, almost Christmassy keyboards bounce alongside the industrial chug and gang vocals, laying the groundwork for lyrics about, well, having someone do a piss on you. And yes, they do both chant the ‘C’ word over a staccato riff you could have found in Al Jourgensen’s back pocket. Till Lindemann: tackling the big issues.

Alec’s  EPs of 2015

It’s not a mini-album, it’s an EP ya prick. In 2015, the extended play has become less a stopgap stratagem and more the conventional, affordable way for up-and-coming bands to get their music into your lug’oles. There’s been some right bangers and, inevitably, some proper dross. But here’s the best of the lot.

The Earls Of Mars – E.P

We’ve not had a band like this since Vulture Industries, and The Earls Of Mars match them in terms of both musicality and sheer scope. The Earls’ self-titled LP was firmly rooted in the progressive desert realms, while ‘E.P’ takes that blueprint and launches itself from the paper with the tenacity of a badger chewing your leg. Whodunnit has a piano-driven, sleazy vaudeville thrust that points towards Vulture Industries’ mid-tempo works, Mr Peep Never Sleeps possesses a swagger and versatility not far away from Faith No More’s ‘King For A Day, Fool For A Lifetime’, with Dan Hardingham pulling off a bastardised Mike Patton croon halfway through. Progressive rock, stoner rock, swing, nigh on black metal moments and pinches of ska all rear their heads through ‘E.P’. Sounds brilliant, doesn’t it? It is.

Mohicans – Mohicans

When you’re a hardcore band pulling off riffs Septicflesh could have easily used, you must know you’re doing something right. Because Mohicans do exactly this. Ugly, brutal blasts of densely-packed hardcore that rage like Converge, Gallows and Black Flag engaging in a bout of fisticuffs with early Mastodon and Code Orange. Chris Palomarez seemingly recorded his vocal and drum parts inside a hippo’s anal cavity; those snare hits are punk as fuck and are probably what Lars Ulrich was after on ‘St. Anger’. But it’s not all relentless riffing. I mean, yes, there is a lot of it, but get a load of that guitar solo in Road. It’s like Clutch are right inside the hippo with them. Brutal, beautiful and way too catchy.

Sikth – Opacities

Imagine not being in your band for nearly a decade and then coming back with Behind The Doors. Just imagine. Sikth. How, how, how are you so perfect? No reformation record has been this flawless. While the Refused live show is still as vital as ever, you can’t really hold ‘Freedom’ up next to ‘The Shape Of Punk To Come’, can you? Not the case with Sikth. ‘Opacities’ is better than the albums. It really is. Since their split, nobody has matched Sikth’s tech metal mastery. Justin Hill and Mikee Goodman’s vocal interplay teeters on genius, Goodman’s obligatory spoken word part on Tokyo Lights is enthralling and the band are still tight, forward-thinking and pulling out enough weird time signatures to make Dillinger Escape Plan break down and cry. And then they end on Days Are Dreamed – an ambient, haunting number – just to ensure that, if anyone even dares try, no band will come close to what Sikth have achieved pre or post reformation. Defiant, non-compliant and a middle finger to the innumerable bands reforming for the dough and shitting out half-baked shadow turds barely resembling former glories. Gu on, Sikth.

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