New Music Round-Up 8/16/19: The Hold Steady, BROCKHAMPTON, The Highwomen, Soul Rebels, The Parlor Mob and more

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Welcome to the BroBible New Music Round-Up, where we are observing a moment of silence for that dude from Counting Crows’ dreads. For more follow me on Twitter:  @ryanoconnell79

This Week’s Playlist

Hey, if you come out with a truly bizarre theory about Jeffrey Epstein’s suicide, then you get the honor of being the playlist of the week.

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The Hold Steady Thrashing Thru The Passion

First things first. The Hold Steady are not for everyone. They’re for a lot of people, but no, they are not for everyone.

I would probably point to singer Craig Finn’s unorthodox vocal style as the main reason why the band isn’t for everyone. Finn doesn’t so much sing as he does tell stories. And he does so with the cadence of a manic, no nonsense beat poet reciting their work in the general direction of an active construction site.

Again, they are not for everyone.

Which is fine! Not every band out there needs to be something everyone loves. The Hold Steady are a niche band and a damn good one at that, locking in an anthemic, garage rock sound that has only gotten better over the course of the band’s fifteen plus year run. Thrashing Thru The Passion is their seventh release and their first since 2014’s Teeth Dreams.

Yet the new album is a little something different from the group. It features five new songs along with five songs that they’ve released digitally over the past couple years, such as “Entitlement Crew” and “Confusion in the Marketplace.”

Finn talked about the band’s new strategy for releasing music in a statement, saying how that “in late 2017, we dropped ‘Entitlement Crew’ and ‘A Snake in the Shower’ as a surprise before our second annual Massive Nights run at the Brooklyn Bowl. We made it available on Bandcamp, with a suggested donation that raised money for a charity.”

“We’ve repeated that a number of times now, dropping these digital singles just before a run of shows,” Finn says. “It’s been fun to release music this way, it feels almost like a new episode of a serial. It also allowed us to escape some of the promotional obligations that come with releasing a full LP. In short, it keeps things exciting and fresh.”

I’m going to be honest, this makes sense. I don’t really know why anyone releases albums anymore.

The band recorded the five newer tracks, then realized that as a unit they’d go well with the songs they had released over previously. The album title comes from the song “You Did Good Kid.”

Touring has also changed for the band, as they’ve ditched long tours in favor of weekend jaunts. Yet as to whether or not these changes become a permanent thing, Finn defers to an American master, saying that “we will continue to take the advice Paul Stanley offered on the classic Kiss song, ‘Room Service,’ and do what we feel.”

Smart.

The Soul Rebels “Good Time”

It’s never a bad time for some New Orleans brass-blasting music. I mean, never. NEVER.

With that being said, New Orleans brass band The Soul Rebels are back with the first song off of their upcoming album Poetry in Motion. “Good Time” features some New Orleans’ muscle, with Big Freedia and Denisia getting in on the action.

The rest of the album features Tarriona “Tank” Ball of Tank and the Bangas, Robert Glasper, Branford Marsalis, Matisyahu and Trombone Shorty.

“Our new album reflects The Soul Rebels sound and style, and challenges and expands upon the perception of a New Orleans brass band,” trumpeter Julian Gosin says of what influenced the band’s sonic direction. “We are breaking the stylistic and artistic boundaries of what it means to be a brass group from New Orleans.”

Poetry in Motion comes out October 25th.

Michael Kiwanuka “You Ain’t The Problem”

One of the joys of Big Little Lies was hearing Kiwanuka’s “Cold Little Heart,” which served as the show’s theme song. The tune was haunting and soulful and stuck with you in a good way, whereas Meryl Streep’s character stuck with you in a creepy AF way.

Kiwanuka is now following that up with his new album, KIWANUKA. “You Ain’t The Problem” is the first song he’s released from the album, which was produced by Danger Mouse and Inflo.

“The last album came from an introspective place and felt like therapy, I guess,” Kiwanuka said in a statement. “This one is more about feeling comfortable in who I am and asking what I want to say. Like, how could I be bold and challenge myself and the listener? It is about self-acceptance in a more triumphant rather than melancholy way. It’s an album that explores what it means to be a human being today.”

Oh, so it features track after track of screaming internally at the madness and absurdity at the world around us?

No. It’s Michael Kiwanuka. It no doubt sounds ten times better than that ever would.

KIWANUKA comes out October 25th.

BROCKHAMPTON “Boy Band”

Earlier this month, hip-hop boy band BROCKHAMPTON dropped a new song, “I Been Born Again,” and with the song’s release came a countdown clock. But what was it counting down too? Something called “Ginger,” but what the hell was “Ginger?”

Rest easy everyone because now we know. Our long national nightmare of not knowing has finally come to an end. Please resume your daily activities.

GINGER is the name of the group’s new album and this week BROCKHAMPTON dropped another song from the upcoming album, “Boy Bye.” It’s the third song they’ve released, following “If You Pray Right,” which came out last week. Have these dudes found religion? Wait, are BROCKHAMPTON a Christian rap group? Please hold, gonna check on that.

Hmm. Doesn’t seem like it. It’s just that with songs with titles like “I Been Born Again” and “If You Pray Right,” I could be forgiven for thinking the group was a religious one.

Anyway, GINGER is the follow-up to the 2018’s iridescenceGINGER comes out on August 23rd.

The Highwomen “Highwomen”

The Highwomen, a newly formed country music supergroup consisting of Brandi Carlile, Natalie Hemby, Maren Morris and Amanda Shires took their name from The Highwaymenan effin’ legendary supergroup of country music icons that got together in the 1980’s. It would then make sense that the group took a run at those old rambler’s most notable tune.

It’s not without a twist though.

As with the original, where Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings and Kris Kristofferson all took on different personas, so do the Highwomen. Yet changing things up some, in their version, the dynamic ladies take on the roles of dynamic female archetypes: a Honduran refugee, a victim of the Salem witch trials, a civil rights freedom rider and a preacher prosecuted for her gender.

The Highwomen get help on the track from Sheryl Crow, who plays bass and provides backing vocals, and Yola, who contributes vocals.

The group’s debut album comes out on September 6th.

The Parlor Mob “Someday”

If Gaslight Anthem are officially done for good, which may or may not be the case, then the great state of New Jersey needs another solid young rock band to get behind. I would then happily endorse The Parlor Mob to fill that void.

To be fair, The Parlor Mob aren’t new. Their new album, Dark Hour, is their fifth. The album is though, a big swing for the group, who enlisted Malay (Frank Ocean, Zayn) to produce.

“We aimed to add modern perspective to old school musicality,” Mark Melicia, the band’s frontman, said in a statement. “We asked ourselves, ‘How can we bring rock ‘n’ roll into the current zeitgeist, so it reflects what’s going on in other genres?’ We embraced dynamics, tones, synthesizers and textures more synonymous with hip-hop or R&B production than rock.”

As for working with Malay, the band was up to the challenge of working with someone from outside their world, saying that “Malay is from a completely different musical world than we are. On paper, it’s strange for a guy who mostly does pop and R&B to work with a rock band, but there was incredible synchronicity between us. We met the right dude who could take us where we need to go and someone we could grow with. It was exactly what we needed at exactly the right time.”

The Parlor Mob will be on tour this fall supporting the new record.

King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard Adventures of a Reluctant Superhero

Australian weirdo rockers King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard are back with their fifteenth album. It comes just four short months after their last album, Fishing For Fishies.

Apparently you go fishing, then you hunt rats. Everyone got that?

I’m not a Gizzard-head, so I have to take other people’s word for it when they say this new album is the band’s heaviest and hardest to date. The metal influence can be traced back to the band member’s formative years.

“In year 4 there was an older kid who was into Rammstein,” said the band’s Stu Mackenzie in a statement. “I made friends with him and we put together a performance at our school assembly where we headbanged to ‘Du Hast.’ I got whiplash, which I thought was pretty cool. That was my introduction to heavy metal, and soon Rammstein led to Metallica, Metallica led to Slayer, Slayer led to Kreator and Sodom. The German bands really kicked my ass and scared the hell out of me too. Later on, when I picked up a guitar I realised that shit was too hard to play, so I got into rock ‘n’ roll and garage. That was liberating.”

The band is on tour supporting the album in both the states and Europe through the fall.

Elsewhere in Music…


This Week in Cut That Shit Out!

can you give police the finger

iStockphoto


As we creep closer and closer to the point where we’re all sick of hearing Lil Nas X’s “Old Town Road,” it should be noted that the song is starting to disrupt local governments in this wonderful country of ours, specifically the local government of Wesley, Massachusetts.

See the problem here is that Wesley has a street in their city called Old Town Road, which yes, is the title of the song. Because of this unfortunate coincidence, effin’ hooligans have repeatedly stolen the street sign.

“The behavior is likely the work of individuals playing pranks, but it costs the town a lot of time and money to locate, repair — and where the signs and posts are damaged — replace, and reinstall the sign,” said Wellesley’s communication and project manager Stephanie Hawkinson.

YOUR ACTIONS HAVE CONSEQUENCES PEOPLE!

The town has elected to just say screw it and not replace the sign until the buzz around the song dies down. I’d say that’s smart, but my dudes, that song has shown no signs of slowing down.

Maybe just rename it. You can name it New Music Round-Up Road. I’m okay with that.

This Week in Deep Thoughts with Cardi B

Come on guys. Eating eggs with ketchup isn’t weird. Eating Mac & Cheese with ketchup is, but not eggs. Get with the program.

We’re Here For Anniversaries

Flea and Anthony Kiedis of Red Hot Chili Peppers perform onstage

Getty Image / Christopher Polk / Staff


So a really good album turned 30 this week and more impressively, did so with very little fanfare. No special edition release or tour to celebrate or even a book full of pictures.

Not. Even. A. Book.

The album in question is Mother’s Milk, the third album from The Red Hot Chili Peppers. It was released on August 16, 1989 and was their first release with John Frusciante on guitar and Chad Smith on drums. The band’s former guitarist, Hillel Slovak, had died a year earlier from a heroin overdose and following that, the band’s drummer Jack Irons left and singer Anthony Kiedis checked into rehab.

Yet amidst the turmoil, the band found themselves entering into an inspiring second act.

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The album was somewhat successful, but more importantly it paved the way for what would come in the following years, most notably the band’s breakthrough album, Blood Sugar Sex Magik.

We celebrate anniversaries for some many classic albums these days, but not this one. That doesn’t make any sense to me.

This Week in Hey, Thanks YouTube

Rick Ross Has His Priorities in Place

Harry Styles Respectfully Declines

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GIPHY

In case you haven’t heard, they are making a live-action Little Mermaid movie and Harry Styles was rumored to be the favorite to play Prince Eric, who in case you’ve forgotten or don’t have a young child who is obsessed with the movie, is the prince who gets shipwrecked, falls in love with a mermaid, doesn’t have any questions when she suddenly becomes human and can’t talk and then has fewer questions when she can talk and so they get married.

Old Disney movies are weird.

Anyway, this week Styles “respectfully declined” to appear in the movie, which includes Halle Bailey, Melissa McCarthy and Awkwafina.

I would like to take this time to respectfully state that Styles’ song “Kiwi” is one of the best rock songs to be released in the past few years.

And no really, those old Disney movies have not aged well.

And We’ll End Here

See you next week!