A Song for Memorial Day

Josh Ritter, “Girl in The War,” from The Animal Years on V2 Records


Beth Orton Is Here. It’s The New Release Mixtape for May 27th

Great new stuff out this week from bands new to me, including The Hotelier and Big Thief. The Big Thief album is a big deal highly anticipated debut from Saddle Creek, home to acts I really like (Big Harp, Azure Ray). Also, that somebody from Dum Dum Girls has a solo project is interesting.

And, for Blair more than anyone else, there’s a new Beth Orton album out. Sigh.

Click here to play the mixtape of seven tracks from these albums, listed below. Or just click the embedded player. Happy listening!


The Hotelier, Goodness on Tiny Engines

Kristin Kontrol (of Dum Dum Girls), X-Communicate on Sub Pop

Catfish And The Bottlemen, The Ride, on Island Records

Big Thief, Masterpiece, on Saddle Creek

Daniel Romano, Mosey, on New West

Beth Orton, Kidsticks, on Anti-Records

Yumi Zouma, Yoncalla, on Cascine

Here’s A Five Song Mixtape of 2016 Tracks I Liked, Shuffled

What if I shuffled my 2016 Radio playlist and shared the first five songs that queued up? You’d get a mini mixtape of five songs released so far this year that I had the sense to add to my playlist, that’s what.

So here you go.

“This Fire,” by Pete Yorn from Arranging Time on Capitol Records

“Cleopatra” by The Lumineers from Cleopatra on Dualtone

“Baby Green” by Francis from Marathon on Strangers Candy

“Cold Night” by Yeasayer from Amen & Goodbye on Mute

“All That’s Left (feat. Joni Fatora)” by Manila Killa

Click here to play the mixtape in YouTube, or listen in the player below.

“Camp Echo” Is A Pop Album with Chops

The most pleasant discovery among the crop of May 20th album releases is, without doubt, “Camp Echo” by Norwegian pop outfit Highasakite on Propeller Recordings (hat tip: The LA Music Blog).

Here’s a little mixtape of four of the most infections tracks on the album. These are synthesizer-driven songs that soar on anthemic hooks and earwormy lyrics (“I’ve got a golden ticket/I’m out”).

That’s they’re catchy doesn’t mean the lyrics are trivial. There’s lament in here and repeated appeals to God. The album’s title is a reference to one of the detention centers at Guantanamo Bay.

Click the player below to hear “Golden Ticket,” “Samurai Swords,” “God Don’t Leave Me,” and “I Am My Own Disease.”


10 Albums We’re Geeked About This Week: The May 20th New Release Mixtape

Mudcrutch (Tom Petty’s side-project), 2, on Reprise

Car Seat Headrest, Teens of Denial, on Matador (Belle and Sebastian)

Kate Jackson, British Road Movies, on The Hoo Ha Record Club

Brett Dennen, Por Favor, on Elektra (Fitz and The Tantrums)

Andy Shauf, The Party, on Anti-Records (Dr. Dog)

Mutual Benefit, Skip A Sinking Stone, on Mom+Pop (Courtney Barnett)

Eric Clapton, I Still Do, on Surfdog (Brian Setzer)

The Posies, Solid States, on Lojinx (They Might Be Giants)

Tiger Army, V, on Rise Records

Yuna, Chapters, on Verve Records


David Bazan Is Back for the May 13th Mixtape

Seven album releases we want to highlight this week, and two of them are by the same band. Click the player below to hear a track from each album.

Fruit Bats, Absolute Loser on Easy Sound Recording Company

David Bazan, Blanco on Barsuk

Modern Baseball, Holy Ghost on Run for Cover

Islands, Should I Remain Here at Sea on Manque

Islands, Taste on Manque

Nothing, Tired of Tomorrow on Relapse Records

Twin Peaks, Down in Heaven on Grand Jury

Here Are The Most Interesting Album Releases for May 6th

Click the player for 12 tracks from albums released today (well, 12 albums and one single). There’s a menu in the top left.

Hurry, Guided Meditation, on Lame-O Records (Modern Baseball)

Anonhi, Hopelessness, on Secretly Canadian (The War on Drugs)

Operators, Blue Wave, on Last Gang Records

Holy Ghost!, Crime Cutz, on DFA Records (YACHT)

Mary Chapin Carpenter, The Things That We Are Made Of, on Lambent Light Records

Destroyer, My Mystery (single)on Merge (M. Ward)

White Lung, Paradise, on Domino Records (The Last Shadow Puppets)

Moreland & Arbuckle, Promised Land or Bust, on Alligator Records

Aloha, Little Windows Cur Right Through, on Polyvinyl (La Sera)

James Blake, The Colour in Anything (self-released)

Thomas Cohen, Bloom Forever, on Stolen Recordings

A Giant Dog, Pile, on Merge

10 New Finds for Your Cinco de Mayo SoundCloud Mixtape

Click play to hear 10 tracks we found on SoundCloud this week that we think you’ll dig. See the track list below the player, complete with links to the SoundCloud accounts where we found each track.

Paul Simon, “Wristband” on Concord Music.

flowers de moon, “Symbiotic” via ObscureSound

Sally Shapiro, “If You Ever Wanna Change Your Mind” via ObscureSound

Aurora, “Conquerer” via Sheffer Stroke

Wildcat! Wildcat!, “Relentless” via Wildcat! Wildcat!

Terror Jr., “Sugar” via Sheffer Stroke

Empty Houses, “Daydream” on Sargent House

Haley Bonar, “I Can Change” on GNDWIRE Records

Xenia Rubios, “Black Stars” on antirecords

Mitski, “Happy” on Dead Oceans

Mom+Pop Music Spotlight Mixtape

Mom+Pop Music may be the youngest label for which we have a spotlight mixtape. Founded in 2008, the label is barely eight years old. But in those eight years the label has compiled an impressive roster and an equally impressive cohort of alumni.

In our spotlight, Barnett, Lucius, Tokyo Police Club, and Polica are all on the Mom+Pop roster presently, while everyone else is alumni. My favorite release from this label has to be 2011’s Walls by the Australian duo An Horse. I’m ready for their follow up.

Subscribe to Mom+Pop’s YouTube channel or their SoundCloud page.