This Week on LetsLoop
1. PHOENIX — J-BOY
In a press release accompanying their new single, the band said that the new album focuses on…
“…simple, pure emotions: love, desire, lust, and innocence. It’s also a record about our European, Latin roots, a fantasized version of Italy: a lost paradise made of eternal Roman summers (hyper-light, hyper-clarity, pistachio gelato), jukeboxes on the beach, Monica Vitti and Marcello Mastroianni, fearless desire and antique marble statues.”
The band have also announced a World Tour with support from Mac DeMarco, Whitney, The Lemon Twigs, and Miike Snow. Head over to the Concerts tab on their LetsLoop profile to grab yourself some tickets.
If you’re new to the French maestros and want to hear more, we highly recommend listening to their stunning 2009 album Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix — easily one of the best albums of the last decade.
2. HAIM — RIGHT NOW
It’s been a long time coming, but HAIM have finally given us our first taste of their much-anticipated 2nd album: a live studio recording of a track called Right Now. The song will feature on the trio’s upcoming album, Something To Tell You, which is out July 7th and follows up their critically-acclaimed debut album, Days Are Gone.
The track is accompanied by a video directed by Paul Thomas Anderson, the Oscar-nominated director of There Will Be Blood, Magnolia and Boogie Nights. If you’re wondering how the sisters managed to convince such a prestigious director to work with them, Este explains all below:
“My mom was studying to be a teacher and to get your credential as a teacher you have to shadow another teacher and get your hours in. My mom gets a gig teaching credential gig at a school in the Valley. First twist: my mom is shadowing the teacher at the school. First week, the teacher has a heart attack in the in the parking lot of the school and my mom becomes the sole art teacher at this school. In one week. My mom was younger than me like 22/ 23 and she now has 5 or 6 classes of kids that she now is the teacher for. She would always talk about this one kid named Paul. That she loved this kid Paul he was very energetic, artistic, vivacious. We’d turn the TV on and Boogie Nights would come on or Magnolia and our mom was like, ‘oh that’s Paul’s movie.’ That being Paul Thomas Anderson. We were like mom are you talking about Paul Thomas Anderson? and she was like ‘yes that is Paul, I Taught Paul.”
3. HEAVEN — IT’S NOT ENOUGH
The song is accompanied by a Rene & Radka-directed video starring Hana Vagnerova and will feature on the synthpop quartet’s debut EP later this year.
Sadly there’s still no word on Dear Tommy, the much-anticipated follow up to Chromatics’ 2012 masterpiece Kill For Love, which was originally slated for release on Valentine’s Day 2015. Hopefully we’ll see it at some stage in 2017, finger crossed!
4. ALGIERS — THE UNDERSIDE OF POWER
The Underside Of Power is the lead single and title track to multi-genre (psychedelic, experimental rock, post-punk, gospel, rap…) Atlanta band Algiers’ upcoming 2nd album, The Underside Of Power, which is out June 23rd and follows up their self-titled debut album, Algiers.
Here’s how the band’s label, Matador Records, describe the new album:
“Produced by Adrian Utley (Portishead) and Ali Chant, mixed by Randall Dunn (Sunn O)))) with post-production by Ben Greenberg (Uniform, Hubble), The Underside Of Power zooms across a musical landscape including but not limited to Southern rap to British grime to horror movie soundtracks to late-70s English industrial to Northern Soul. In the wake of our current political climate, Algiers cast a withering gaze on subject matter ranging from oppression, whiteness, police brutality, dystopia, and hegemonic power structures.”
The band have also announced an impressive new addition to the band: former Bloc Party drummer Matt Tong.
5. SUFJAN STEVENS, BRYCE DESSNER, NICO MUHLY & JAMES MCALISTER — MERCURY
Mercury is the 2nd single from Planetarium, a new album-project from Sufjan Stevens, Bryce Dessner from The National, contemporary classical music composer Nico Muhly, and Sufjan’s drummer James McAlister.
As you can probably guess from the title, the album is all about the solar system and — alongside Mercury and the recently released lead single, Saturn — will feature tracks named Halley’s Comet, Black Hole, Kuiper Belt and more along these lines.
Planetarium will be Sufjan and James’s first new album since 2015’s stunning Carrie & Lowell, Bryce’s first since The National’s 2013 album Trouble Will Find Me and Nico’s first since last year’s Confessions.
6. RIDE — ALL I WANT
All I Want is the 3rd single from Ride’s upcoming 5th album, Weather Diaries, which is out June 16th and follows up 1996’s Tarantula (yup, it’s been over 20 years since their last album together!). It will be joined on the new album by the recently released Home Is A Feeling and the excellent lead single, Charm Assault.
Here’s what frontman Andy Bell had to say about the band’s latest single:
“The day we recorded All I Want, Theresa May had announced that her government would be making firms list their foreign workers. As it turned out that never happened because of the outcry about it, but that was the origin of the line comparing the U.K. to 1930’s Germany. It’s not like Ride are going political it’s more that the current state of the UK is so terrible that we could not avoid writing about it when we were writing lyrics for the album.”
Erol Alkan, who produced the new album, also shared a few words:
“Nowhere and Going Blank Again were big records for me and my friends when we were growing up. I’ve vaguely known Andy for a few years through his brother-in-law but we didn’t actually meet until a couple of years back. I had an email from them asking if I’d like to collaborate with the band, and once I’d heard the demos, I was 100% in. And’s very well versed in electronic music, so we had a common bond in that as well as alternative music. The new music contains all the great elements you want from Ride — Great songs, loud guitars, beautiful harmonies, powerful rhythms.”
If you’re wondering what the band have been up to for the last 20 years… in 1996 Andy formed Hurricane #1 and had a few pretty big hits like Step Into My World and Only The Strongest Will Survive before breaking up in 1999; he then went on to join Oasis and later Beady Eye. Mark Gardener and Laurence Colbert went on to form the short-lived band Animalhouse, before going their separate ways; Gardener went solo and released the album These Beautiful Ghosts, whilst Colbert played drums for The Jesus and Mary Chain and Supergrass. Steve Queralt retired from music altogether.
If you’re new to Ride and want to hear what they were like back in the day, it’s probably best to ignore their last 2 albums and focus on their first 2: start with Vapour Trail and Seagull from their debut Nowhere, Leave Them All Behind and Twisterella from their 2nd album Going Blank Again, and then if you like what you hear dive into the albums themselves.
7. ROSTAM — GWAN
When he’s not busy working on his new project with The Walkmen’s Hamilton Leithauser (the duo released their stunning debut album last year), scoring hit Netflix series The O.A. (co-written by Brit Marling & his brother Zal) or guesting on hit singles like This Song with RAC, former Vampire Weekend member Rostam Batmanglij is busy tinkering away at his much-anticipated debut solo album.
Gwan is the latest track to surface from his new album (expected later this year) and comes with a Greg Brunkalla-directed video starring Rostam walking round New York in slow motion.
Here’s what Rostam had to say about his latest single:
“I’ve had experiences where my life will try to tell me something in a dream — and sometimes it’s something I’m not ready to hear. So I think maybe this song is about trying to listen to what your subconscious mind is trying to say to you.”
8. SHABAZZ PALACES — SHINE A LIGHT (FEAT. THADDILLAC)
Shine A Light is the lead single to alternative hip-hop duo Shabazz Palaces’ upcoming 3rd album, Quazarz: Born on a Gangster Star, which is out July 14th and follows up 2014’s Lese Majesty and their breathtaking debut album, Black Up.
According to a press release, the album tells the story of “a sentient being from somewhere else” called Quazarz. Here’s how Shabazz Palaces member Ishmael Butler, aka Palaceer Lazaro, aka Butterfly from jazz-rap group Digable Planets, describes the character:
“I, Quazarz, Born On A Gangster Star, son only of Barbara Dream Caster and Reginald The Dark Hoper — he who rides on light — dreamer of the seventh dream and kissed eternal by Awet the Sun Scented — who far from home I found my same self differents in those constellies that be Dai at my weap-side immediate and all us Water Guild affiliates who revelries in the futures passed recordings and ceremonies flexing resplendent in the Paradise Sportif armor — raising these musics a joy/cry that way into these aquadescentdiamondized ethers of the Migosphere here on Drake world. Welcome To Quazarz.”
Fun fact: the video for Shine A Light was directed by Cristina T. Bercovitz and Jonathan Snipes from clipping..
9. FALL OUT BOY — YOUNG AND MENACE
Here’s what frontman Pete Wentz had to say about the new single:
“It’s hard to rationalize rage — it’s hard to quantify anxiety… this song does neither, it embraces the wave.”
And its SCANTRON and Mel Soria-directed video:
“The concept is the idea of a movie like Elf, where he realizes maybe he isn’t an elf after all, but ours has less comedic elements and more real world implication.”
Fall Out Boy have also announced a tour to coincide with the release of the album, so head over to the Concerts tab on their LetsLoop profile to see if they’re playing near you. All proceeds of the tickets sales will go to the Fall Out Boy Fund, which gives to charities in Chicago.
10. LUCY ROSE — IS THIS CALLED HOME
It is accompanied by a video starring dancer Jonathan Lutwyche in a self-choreographed performance on top of a hill in The Lake District. Here’s what Lucy had to say about the new video:
“The idea for the video came as we were finishing the song and adding the strings. For the ending of the song, my producer Tim Bidwell wanted Andrew the violin player to improvise to his dancing.
I was watching Tim express himself through movements and Andrew imitated those as he was playing his violin. The ending of the song suddenly took shape and at that moment I wondered what it would look like to see a dancer expressing how the song made them feel.
I’ve been a huge admirer of Jonathan Lutwyche’s work so I contacted him directly and asked if he would like to collaborate for this music video. The most important thing that I wanted to achieve in making this video was capturing someone expressing how a song made them feel.
I often try to find the words to describe how music makes me feel but there is a real mystery to why a song can make your heart race, makes the hair on your arms stand up and takes you to a different place. I wanted to capture exactly that in Jonathan’s dance. I had no idea what Jonathan’s dance was going to look like but I was completely blown away with the sheer emotion he let out in one take.
This video was the first take of the day and much of it was improvised on the spot. I think it’s truly beautiful to watch him dance in one of the most beautiful places in the world, The Lake District.”
Something’s Changed will also feature the recently released lead single Floral Dresses, a collaboration between Lucy and The Staves (an English folk-rock group made-up of 3 sisters: Emily, Jessica and Camilla Staveley-Taylor).
ALSO WORTH CHECKING OUT THIS WEEK:
- All Time Low — Life Of The Party
- Blondie — Fragments
- Cashmere Cat — Quit (feat. Ariana Grande)
- CHVRCHES — Down Side Of Me (Live)
- Dan Auerbach (The Black Keys) — King Of A One Horse Town
- Foster The People — Doing It For The Money
- Imagine Dragons — Thunder
- Joji — I Don’t Wanna Waste My Time
- Kane Strang — My Smile Is Extinct
- Katy Perry — Bon Appétit (feat. Migos)
- Kirin J Callinan — S.A.D.
- Mac DeMarco — One More Love Song
- ODESZA — Late Night
- Oh Wonder — My Friends
- OneRepublic — No Vacancy
- Palm — Walkie Talkie
- Portugal. The Man — Number One
- Superorganism — It’s All Good
- SZA — Love Galore (feat. Travis Scott)
- The Afghan Whigs — Oriole
- The Japanese House — Saw You In A Dream
- The Strypes — Oh Cruel World
- WATERS — Stand By You