This Week on LetsLoop
1. GORILLAZ — SATURNZ BARZ (FEAT. POPCAAN)
Back in January Gorillaz shared their first new music in over 6 years: a track called Hallelujah Money, featuring Mercury Prize winner Benjamin Clementine. Today, along with details for their new album Humanz, the virtual superstars have shared not 1… not 2… but 4 new tracks!!
Saturnz Barz features dancehall star Popcaan and is accompanied by a rather impressive Jamie Hewlett-directed video with Murdoc floating naked in space, 2D playing golf on a meteorite, Noodle getting attacked by some kind of space monster, a talking pizza & more (it also incorporates parts of the other songs released today, see below).
Humanz will be released on April 28th and will also feature today’s other new releases: Ascension featuring Vince Staples, Andromeda featuring D.R.A.M., and We Got The Power featuring Savages’ frontwoman Jehnny Beth and (surprisingly, if any of you can remember the Blur vs. Oasis battles in the 90s) Noel Gallagher.
2. MOUNT EERIE — RAVENS
Brace yourself, this is utterly heartbreaking. Ravens is the 2nd single from Phil Elverum’s new Mount Eerie album, A Crow Looked At Me: a soundtrack to grief written in the months following his wife’s death last year.
It is accompanied by an Elverum-directed video, featuring footage of his late wife Geneviève.
A Crow Looks At Me deals with Phil Elverum’s reaction to the death of his wife, artist Geneviève Castrée, who sadly passed away from pancreatic cancer last year. In fact, he confronts the subject matter so head-on that the entire album was written and recorded in the room she died.
Here’s what Phil had to say about the album, which was released on Friday and follows up 2015’s Sauna:
“Why share this much? Why open up like this? Why tell you, stranger, about these personal moments, the devastation and the hanging love? Our little family bubble was so sacred for so long. We carefully held it behind a curtain of privacy when we’d go out and do our art and music selves, too special to share, especially in our hyper-shared imbalanced times. Then we had a baby and this barrier felt even more important. (I still don’t want to tell you our daughter’s name.) In May 2015 they told us Geneviève had a surprise bad cancer, advanced pancreatic, and the ground opened up. ‘What matters now?’ we thought. Then on July 9th 2016 she died at home and I belonged to nobody anymore. My internal moments felt like public property. The idea that I could have a self or personal preferences or songs eroded down into an absurd old idea leftover from a more self-indulgent time before I was a hospital-driver, a caregiver, a child-raiser, a griever. I am open now, and these songs poured out quickly in the fall, watching the days grey over and watching the neighbors across the alley tear down and rebuild their house. I make these songs and put them out into the world just to multiply my voice saying that I love her. I want it known.
DEATH IS REAL could be the name of this album. These cold mechanics of sickness and loss are real and inescapable, and can bring an alienating, detached sharpness. But it is not the thing I want to remember. A crow did look at me. There is an echo of Geneviève that still rings, a reminder of the love and infinity beneath all of this obliteration. That’s why.”
A Crow Looks At Me will also feature the breathtaking lead single, Real Death.
3. PERFUME GENIUS — SLIP AWAY
If you’re not familiar with the (perfume) genius of Mike Hadreas, you’re in for a real treat. Over the course of 3 breathtaking albums he’s made us laugh, cry and (most important of all) feel.
Slip Away is the lead single to Perfume Genius’s upcoming 4th album, No Shape, which is out May 5th and follows up 2014’s Too Bright. The new single is accompanied by an Andrew Thomas Huang-directed video (Andrew is currently Björk’s go-to video director).
Here’s what Perfume Genius, aka Mike Hadreas, had to say about his upcoming Blake Mills-produced album:
“I pay my rent. I’m approaching health. The things that are bothering me personally now are less clear, more confusing. I don’t think I really figured them out with these songs. There’s something freeing about how I don’t have it figured out. Unpacking little morsels, magnifying my discomfort, wading through buried harm, laughing at or digging in to the embarrassing drama of it all. I may never come out the other side but it’s invigorating to try and hopefully, ultimately helpful. I think a lot of them are about trying to be happy in the face of whatever bullshit I created for myself or how horrible everything and everyone is.”
If you’re new to Perfume Genius and would like to hear more, we highly recommend listening to Queen, Fool and Grid from 2014’s Too Bright; Normal Song, Hood, Take Me Home, Sister Song and Awol Marine from 2012’s truly breathtaking Put Your Back N 2 It; and Lookout, Lookout, Mr. Peterson and No Problem from his 2010 debut album, Learning.
4. WATERS — HICCUPS
With summer just around the corner, here’s a track to make you feel like it’s already here…
If you’re a fan of the infectious pop of bands like Grouplove or Weezer’s recent White Album then you’ll love WATERS, a Norwegian band fronted by former Port O’Brien and The Morning Benders member Van Pierszalowski.
Hiccups is the lead single to their upcoming 3rd album Something More!, which is out May 19th and follows up 2011’s Out In The Light and 2015’s What’s Real. Here’s what Van had to say about the new album:
“I wanted to make a record that was communicating with my teenager self, as if to say ‘It’s always gonna be the same shit just in slightly different contexts.’ I wanted to make a mixtape, scribble notes all over the paper sleeve, get into the DeLorean, find high-school Van, and say ‘Listen to this.’”
5. LONDON GRAMMAR — TRUTH IS A BEAUTIFUL THING
Truth Is A Beautiful Thing is the 3rd single and title track to London Grammar’s upcoming 2nd album, Truth Is A Beautiful Thing, which is out June 9th and follows up their stunning 2013 debut album, If You Wait.
The new album was produced by Paul Epworth (Florence + The Machine, Bloc Party, Coldplay, Adele & more), Greg Kurstin (Sia, Beck, Lily Allen, The Shins & more) and 2-time Mercury Prize nominee Jon Hopkins; it will also feature the recently released Big Picture and the excellent lead single, Rooting For You.
If you’re new to the band and want to hear more of Hannah’s stunning voice, we highly recommend checking out Strong, Hey Now, Wasting My Young Years and Nightcall, a cover of Kavinsky’s Nightcall (feat. Lovefoxxx) from the Drive soundtrack.
6. FUTURE ISLANDS — CAVE
The album was produced by Sleater-Kinney, St. Vincent and John Grant producer John Congleton and recorded at Sunset Sound in Los Angeles, the famous studio where The Beach Boys, Prince and Red Hot Chili Peppers recorded.
7. ETHEREAL — ROLLIN’ (FEAT. FAYE WEBSTER)
8. LOCAL NATIVES — I SAW YOU CLOSE YOUR EYES
As marketing gimmicks go “you can only listen to this song if your eyes are shut” is pretty out there. Yet that’s exactly what Local Natives want you to do on the website for their new single, I Saw You Close Your Eyes.
Here’s what it says:
“Local Natives would like you to listen to their new song “I Saw You Close Your Eyes.” In order for this experience to work best, please turn the lights off in your room and turn the brightness up on your laptop. If you’re wearing glasses, remove them for a moment. Then click the link to grant access to your eyes below, position your head about 12 inches from the screen and close your eyes when you’re ready to listen.”
Once you give it permission, the website will then use your computer’s camera to make sure your eyes are closed and play the song. No peeking though, if you open your eyes at all the song will stop playing. If that all sounds a pain in the arse, then just hit play below instead :)
No word yet on whether this is a one-off single or if the band are already gearing up to release the follows up to last year’s Sunlit Youth… but fingers crossed it’s the latter!
9. POND — THE WEATHER
Pond are a psychedelic rock band from Perth, Australia and are kind of a supergroup: they are fronted by Nicholas Allbrook, Tame Impala’s Jay Watson is a current member and former / revolving members include Kevin Parker and Cameron Avery, who recently went solo after sharing the amazing C’est toi.
10. !!! (CHK CHK CHK) — THE ONE 2
Californian dance-punk band !!! may have one of the least Google-able names, but they’ve got some BIG tunes. The One 2 is the massive lead single to their upcoming 7th album, Shake The Shudder, which is out May 19th and follows up 2015’s As If.
Shake The Shudder is produced by Patrick Ford and features a number of guest vocalists including Lea Lea, Meah Pace, Nicole Fayu, Cameron Mesirow, and Molly Schnick.
11. GOLDFRAPP — MOON IN YOUR MOUTH
Moon In Your Mouth is the 3rd single from Goldfrapp’s upcoming 7th album, Silver Eye, which is out March 31st and follows up 2013’s Tales of Us. It will be joined on the new album by the recently released Ocean and lead single, Anymore.
Here’s what the Alison Goldfrapp had to say about the new album:
“We’ve never liked repeating ourselves. Often we react to things we’ve just done. We like the spontaneity of not knowing. It’s only through the process that we start to figure out what it is. The fans who have stuck with us are the ones who embrace that idea and are excited by the thought that they don’t know quite what to expect next.
We wanted to sort of bring the synths again. We loved Tales Of Us very much, but we felt like it would be nice to introduce synths and a different kind of, sort of a tougher sound, maybe, something a bit like Supernature or Black Cherry. But we were also quite conscious of not really repeating ourselves. We wanted to do something a bit more minimal than those albums.”
Band mate Will Gregory added:
“I think writing an album is like being lost in a wood. You’re trying to figure out an interesting path. You don’t know whether it’s going to be a dead end or somewhere interesting and you never know when to stop because around the corner some beautiful vista might open up.”
12.CHUCK BERRY — BIG BOYS
On October 18th last year, rock legend Chuck Berry celebrated his 90th birthday by announcing his first album in over 38 years, Chuck. In a statement released at the time, he dedicated his upcoming 20th album to his wife of 68 years, Themetta “Toddy” Suggs:
“This record is dedicated to my beloved Toddy. My darlin’ I’m growing old! I’ve worked on this record for a long time. Now I can hang up my shoes!”
Sadly, the rock’n’roll legend passed away before the album could be released.
The good news for fans is the record will still be released (on June 16th) and today we get the first taste of what it sounds like. Big Boys is the album’s lead single and features guest appearances Rage Against The Machine and Audioslave’s Tom Morello and Nathaniel Rateliff.
Chuck will be sadly missed, but his music will always live on (thank you Back To The Future). Head over to his main artist page to see some of the lovely tributes pouring in from his fans. RIP, Chuck!
13. SAINT ETIENNE — HEATHER
Here’s what Sarah Cracknell had to say about the new album:
“We had so much fun writing for this album, drawing influence from our teenage years growing up in the home counties. Bob, Pete and I led almost parallel lives while I was in Windsor and they were in Surrey, developing our passion for music and London. Shawn Lee was a joy to work with, he’s a wonderful multi-instrumentalist who seemed to have some kind of telepathy with us and translated our ideas perfectly. The record is quite varied in styles and brings together a little something from all our past albums whilst sounding completely new.”
The band have also announced a bunch of tour dates to support the album, so head over to the Concerts tab on their LetsLoop page to see if they’re playing near you.
14. KEVIN MORBY — COME TO ME NOW
Here’s what Kevin had to say about his new single:
“The organ you’re hearing on this song is an old pump organ from the 1800s, I wish I could remember the brand but I don’t. This was my favorite part of recording this album, playing this thing and pumping air into it with the foot pedals, it had such a presence from the moment I entered the studio. For the first few days I think I thought it was just there for looks, that there was no way it still worked, but sure enough it did. Above it hung a framed photo of the original owner of the studio’s property who died sometime ago. Apparently his ghost still occupies the premises.”
…and the new album:
“It is a mix-tape, a fever dream, a love letter dedicated to those cities that I cannot get rid of, to those cities that are all inside of me.”
15. THURSTON MOORE — SMOKE OF DREAMS
Rock N Roll Consciousness will only feature 5 songs (more of an EP surely?), which is all the more strange given a single he released just 3 weeks ago, Cease Fire, will not be making an appearance.
Thurston will be joined on the new album by former Sonic Youth drummer Steve Shelley and My Bloody Valentine bassist Debbie Googe.
16. MURA MASA — 1 NIGHT (FEAT. CHARLI XCX)
BBC Sound Of 2016 nominee Mura Masa (aka Guernsey-born, London-based electronic music producer Alex Crossan) has teamed up with Charli XCX on 1 Night, the latest track to surface from his much-anticipated debut album, To Fall Out Of Love To, which is due later this year and follows up his debut Someday Somewhere EP.
Here’s what Alex had to say about his new single:
“I think I just had that beat lying around for a while and we sent it to a couple of people. Then Charli just did her thing.”
And as if those aren’t impressive enough for a 20 year old who hasn’t even released his debut album yet, he also co-wrote Seven Months by Låpsley and First Things First from UK grime superstar Stormzy’s Number 1 debut album, Gang Signs & Prayer.
17. KELLY LEE OWENS — ANXI. (FEAT. JENNY HVAL)
London-based producer Kelly Lee Owens has teamed up with the wonderful Jenny Hval on Anxi, the lead single to her much-anticipated debut album, Kelly Lee Owens, which is was released on Friday and follows up last year’s excellent Oleic EP.
18. NITE JEWEL — 2 GOOD 2 BE TRUE
2 Good 2 Be True is the lead single to Nite Jewel (aka Ramona Gonzalez)’s upcoming 4th album, Real High, which is out May 5th and follows up 2016’s Liquid Cool. The song is accompanied by a Geneva Jacuzzi-directed video, starring Ramona and Anna Barie as “Death”.
19. GEMS — PEACEFULLY
Here’s what the band had to say about their latest single in the series on their YouTube page:
“Someone once told me that when you finally end a relationship, you see your lover as you did in the beginning for a moment, remembering how they first charmed and intrigued you, how you used to regard one another; it’s all fresh once again, like looking at an apartment you’re leaving after all your belongings are in the moving van, free of all the clutter and stains that have piled up over the years. I hesitated to cut the knots we’d tied so tight many times as the sweetest memories would flood into my mind. But eventually I had to set them free.”
20. JONTI — SCROOD (FEAT. STEVE LACY)
Sydney-based producer and The Avalanches touring guitarist Jonti has teamed up with The Internet’s Steve Lacy on a new single called Scrood, his first new material since his 2012 album Sine & Moon and his one-off single, Saturday Night, which was released later that year.
No word yet on a new album, but… fingers crossed!
21. COCO HAMES — TINY PIECES
Here’s what Coco had to say about her new album:
“I grew up listening to ’60s pop like Dusty Springfield, but also classic country music, like Patsy Cline, and things that bridged both worlds, like Bobbie Gentry. With this record, the end result doesn’t fit into any one category. Which is an exciting thing to me.”
22. WHITE REAPER — THE STACK
The Stack is the 3rd single from Louisville, Kentucky punk-rock band White Reaper’s upcoming 3rd album, The World’s Best American Band, which is out April 7th and follows up 2015’s White Reaper Does It Again.