Out this week, all of the records that you need on your shelf this week in one handy place.
Check out the albums that get our fopp stamp of approval below.
The Jesus & Mary Chain – Damage & Joy
Fronted by the Reid brothers, Jim and William, few bands have had such a huge effect on musical culture, as The Jesus And Mary Chain. Their attitude alone, dressed in black, angry with the world, playing short sets drenched in feedback, set the benchmark in the post Sex Pistols music scene.
Their seminal debut album Psychocandy would go on to change the course of popular music, channelling the sneering angst and noise distortion of the live shows into hypnotic sweet melodies layered with dark lyrics that would beguile and bewilder.
They return after a 19 year absence with the long-awaited Damage And Joy, their first record since 98’s Munki. The album features the first single Amputation, with its easygoing Dandy-Warhols-like sound, as well as a re-energised version of All Things Must Pass, which previously featured in the TV show Heroes.
Bardo Pond – Under The Pines
So complex and substance-affected was their evolution, Bardo Pond have been creating their dreamy riffs for 26 years alongside a myriad of side projects. Returning with a career defining album, Under The Pines sees them delve into the subconscious with their transcending cosmic post-rock.
Over 41 minutes The Pond’s fermentation, their languid throb and textured groove (flute, violin, Isobel Sollenberger’s haunting vocals) sounds like cathartic dream pop wrapped in a delicately constructed barbwire shroud.
Bardo Pond’s remarkable career and exemplary output has seen them gain fans from all corners of the pond. One of their finest albums to date and nearly three decades on, Bardo Pond are in it for the long haul and remain one of the most significant underground rock bands of our time.
Steve Hackett – The Night Siren
Guitar virtuoso and rock legend, Steve Hackett (formerly of Genesis), releases his latest album The Night Siren. As implied in the title, the album is a wake-up call… the warning of a siren sounding in this era of strife and division.
The record showcases Steve’s incredible guitar playing as strongly as ever, along with regular Hackett collaborators and also musicians from several different countries who Steve invited to join him in celebrating multicultural diversity and unity. This includes singers from Israel and Palestine, who both actively campaign to bring Jewish and Arabic people together.
There are also instrumentals from the USA and Iraq and a multiplicity of sounds, including the exotic strains of Indian sitar and Middle Eastern tar and oud, the ethnic beauty of the Peruvian charango and the haunting Celtic Uilleann pipes.
Me & That Man – Songs Of Love & Death
Me And That Man is a meeting at the crossroads; Nergal, the charismatic visionary, free thinker and frontman of Behemoth, one of the most infamous and increasingly successful bands in extreme music and British/Polish rock musician, John Porter.
Their debut album, Songs of Love & Death is a journey across bleak, dust-ravaged plains, soundtracked by low-slung guitars and steeped in the rawest essence of rock and blues. The tracks draw on dark narratives familiar to fans of Nick Cave, Tom Waits and Leonard Cohen and crackle with an evocative, sinister aesthetic. It is an album of simple, yet timeless ideas, all filtered through Nergal’s pitch-black poetic prism.
He states, “(Opening track) My Church Is Black is a strong declaration. With Me And That Man, I’m telling simple stories in a simple way, not overloaded with metaphors and hidden meanings. It’s just got to be as natural, organic and stripped down as it can be.”
Also Out This Week
Boss Hog – Brood X
Daniel Brendt – Eternal Something
Samantha Crain – You Had Me At Goodbye
Craig Finn – We All Want The Same Things
Johnny Flynn – Sillion
Kelly Lee Owens – Kelly Lee Owens
The Mavericks – Brand New Days
Moonlandingz – Interplanetary Class Classics
Laetitia Sadier: Source Ensemble – Find Me Finding You
Spiral Stairs – Doris & The Daggers
Steel Panther – Lower The Bar
Various Artists – Jazzanova – The Remixes 2006-2016