New Music Monday is a collection of the best new releases in music each week. We share them with you every Monday, every hour on WFUV.
Alela Diane - About Farewell
About Farewell is the fourth album from Portland, Oregon based singer Alela (A-lee-la) Diane. The album is very reminiscent of The Greatest-era Cat Power, but Diane takes that influence and creates something completely her own. Her lyrics are wide ranging; on "The Way We Fall" she sings "It was bad in my hometown / drinking whiskey from the bottle / It was an Indian summer / wildfires were burning," which is followed by the powerful chorus, "I didn't know it was the last time." "Colorado Blue" is another strong track, although perhaps I like it so much because I am a native of Colorado. Either way, About Farewell is a breathtaking release that brings us around to the midpoint of 2013.
Beck - "I Won't Be Long"
Beck released this new single during a live performance at Paris's Days Off festival by handing out stickers to the audience that led to the YouTube video of the song. It's somewhat similar to the electronic-pop feel of his last record, 2008's Modern Guilt, and reminds us of Brooklyn band TV on the Radio a little bit. Beck has said that there are no plans for the song to be on any upcoming album, but we are also hearing rumors of a new acoustic album as well as "the proper follow-up to Modern Guilt." It's looking to be a productive 2013 for Beck Hansen.
Buddy Guy - Rhythm and Blues
Buddy Guy's Rhythm and Blues is a new record due out July 30th. It's Guy's first since 2010 and has a wide range of supporting stars, from Kid Rock to Keith Urban, Gary Clark Jr., and Steven Tyler. In our opinion the most promising aspect of the new album is Guy's decision to cover legendary blues artists Guitar Slim (the original Jimi Hendrix) and Junior Wells.
Goldspot - "The Border Line"
"The Border Line" is a fantastic new song from New York based band Goldspot. It comes from their newest album Aerogramme, due out August 21st. Singer Siddhartha Khosla grew up listening to Bollywood music and western rock bands and we can hear that influence on the track, so much so that we have read repeated references to George Harrison in relation to the band. While not as prolific as Harrison, we don't think those comparisons are that far off.
Jason Isbell - Southeastern
Listening to Jason Isbell's Southeastern, I'm reminded of a quote by author Charles Portis: "In motel life at the low end, you don't bother to say goodbye. One day you just steal away and your disappearance is little noted if at all." That idea permeates Jason Isbell's new record. The lyrics range from broken relationships to blind faith, lonesomeness, and that country music cliche of the end-of-the-road poet, reduced to nothing but glass of Jim Beam whiskey (or would it be Evan Williams?). Isbell takes these old themes and reinvents them with simple, sparse, and often haunting music but it's in the lyrics that Isbell flourishes. Simply put, they're some of the best we've heard in years. Try this: "I've heard love songs make a Georgia man cry / on the shoulder of somebody's Saturday night / Read the good book, studied it too / but nothing prepared me for living with you."
Moby - "A Case For Shame"
"A Case For Shame" is Moby's new song from his upcoming album Innocents. It's his first since 2011 and features a wide range of guest artists, from Wayne Coyne of the Flaming Lips to Mark Lanegan and Skylar Grey. "A Case For Shame" features guest vocals from Cold Specks and is an introspective, brooding track that has us excited for the full album release.
Travis - "Moving"
"Moving" is a song from the new Travis record, Where You Stand, out August 19th. Originating in the Oasis burst of 1990's Indie British rock bands, Travis has come a long way. On "Moving" lead Fran Healy sings with Lou Reed-esque vocals over an upbeat and quirky melody that is making us wonder where Travis has been for the last five years.