May's New Music

Updated: Sep 10

After a busy April with lots of new releases and, of course, our very first Record Store Day, it's time for our round up of May's new music. This month we have eagerly awaited new records from Liam Gallagher, Arcade Fire and Sharon Van Etten, the return of Belle and Sebastian and classic reissues from Neil Young, The Sex Pistols and Daft Punk. Here's our pick of what you can look forward to this month.

 

Daft Punk - Homework

Due 6th May 2022


In January 1997, Daft Punk released their critically acclaimed debut album multi -platinum Homework, featuring the hit singles Around the World, Burning and Revolution 909 plus Da Funk. Album of 1997 by many in the music press.


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Daft Punk - Alive

Due 6th May 2022

Live recording from Birmingham, November 1997. 45 minutes of non-stop live mixing, featuring Daft Punk’s standard tracks (Da Funk, Rollin’ & Scratching) along with those techno-electronic explosions unique to Daft Punk.


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!!! (Chk Chk Chk) - Let It Be Blue

Due 6th May 2022

The band’s ninth record, Let it Be Blue, takes that feeling of constant, radical transformation to new, untapped zones. It’s a record of sparse dance music. The kind of stuff you want to put on loud, let loose, go to the bar to get a drink only to abandon your plans because the song that just came on was too good not to dance to. Let it Be Blue is a computer record, but it doesn’t feel like it. Featuring production from Patrick Ford, Let it Be Blue is the product of file sharing, trading stems, song particles, little ideas on their way to being fully realized dance tracks. It was conceived during the past two years, with dreams of future dancefloors very much on the brain. The resulting 11 songs are some of the band’s most production focused offerings to date. They’re crystalline, full of sub-bass and drums. It evokes visions of clubs where a concoction of Dembow and acid house play at volumes so loud your ears hurt and you forget what day of the week it is. In other words, it’s a !!! album. It makes you freak out a little bit.


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Kylie - Infinite Disco

Due 6th May 2022

Fans are invited to return to ‘Infinite Disco’, Kylie’s globally successful live spectacular broadcasted in 2020. Released alongside Kylie’s record-breaking album ‘DISCO’, the 50-minute special performance was met with widespread acclaim and deemed ‘a true joy’ by The i. The ‘Infinite Disco’ vinyl features tracks from DISCO, alongside much loved hits ‘In Your Eyes’, ‘Light Years’, ‘Slow’ (a mash up with Donna Summer’s iconic ‘Love To Love You Baby’) and ‘Say Something’, performed with the House Gospel Choir.


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Arcade Fire - WE

Due 6th May 2022

Produced by Nigel Godrich, Win & Régine, and recorded in multiple locales including New Orleans, El Paso and Mount Desert Island, WE paradoxically distills “the longest we’ve ever spent writing, uninterrupted, probably ever" (per the band’s Win Butler) into a concise 40 minute epic – one as much about the forces that threaten to pull us away from the people we love, as it is inspired by the urgent need to overcome them. WE’s cathartic journey follows a definable arc from darkness into light over the course of seven songs divided into two distinct sides -- Side “I” channeling the fear and loneliness of isolation, and Side “WE” expressing the joy and power of reconnection. On the album’s cover, a photograph of a human eye by the artist JR evokes Sagittarius A*, the supermassive black hole at the center of the galaxy. This stunning image -- embellished by the distinctive airbrush color tinting of Terry Pastor (utilizing the same physical technique he employed on David Bowie’s iconic Hunky Dory and Ziggy Stardust covers) – is the visual expression of WE


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Various Artists - fabric Presents TSHA

Due 6th May 2022

Featuring twelve key full-length tracks from TSHA’s mix for fabric including her own exclusive bright house track ‘BOYZ’. Another four of the tracks are release-exclusives as well – those by Aspect, Ryan Clover, Jeran Portis and Nicolson. The cover art draws on 90’s raves, old skool vibes and the ethos of escapism and bringing people together. This is the first ‘fabric presents’ double vinyl cut to colored – yellow – vinyl. Black inners and extra glossy printed card will make this physical format pop! It's completed by a download card for free wavs of the full length tracks.


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Sharon Van Etten - We've Been Going About This All Wrong

Due 6th May 2022

Sharon Van Etten has always been the kind of artist who helps people make sense of the world around them, and her sixth album, We’ve Been Going About This All Wrong, concerns itself with how we feel, mourn, and reclaim our agency when we think the world - or at least, our world - might be falling apart. How do we protect the things most precious to us from destructive forces beyond our control? How do we salvage something worthwhile when it seems all is lost? And if we can’t, or we don’t, have we loved as well as we could in the meantime? Did we try hard enough? In considering these questions and her own vulnerability in the face of them, Van Etten creates a stunning meditation on how life’s changes can be both terrifying and transformative. We’ve Been Going About This All Wrong articulates the beauty and power that can be rescued from our wreckages. We’ve Been Going About This All Wrong is as much a reflection on how we manage the ending of metaphorical worlds as we do the ending of actual ones: the twin flames of terror and unrelenting love that light up with motherhood; navigating the demands of partnership when your responsibilities have changed; the loss of center and safety that can come with leaving home; how the ghosts of our past can appear without warning in our present; feeling helpless with the violence and racism in the world; and yes, what it means when a global viral outbreak forces us to relinquish control of the things that have always made us feel so human, and seek new forms of connection to replace them. We’ve Been Going About This All Wrong is intensely personal, exploring themes like motherhood, love, fear, what we can and can’t control, and what it means to be human in a world that is wracked by so much trauma. The track “Home To Me,” written about Van Etten’s son, uses the trademark “dark drums” of her previous work to invoke the sonic impression of a heartbeat. Synths grow in intensity, evoking the passing of time and the terror of what it means to have your child move inevitably toward independence, wanting to hold on to them tightly enough to protect them forever. In contrast, “Come Back” reflects on the desire to reconnect with a partner. Recalling all the optimism of love felt in its infancy, Van Etten begins with the plain beauty of just her voice and a guitar, building the arrangement alongside the call to “come back” to anyone who has lost their way, be it from another person or from themselves. Hovering between darkness and light, “Born” is an exploration of the self that exists when all other labels - mother, partner, friend - are stripped back. Unlike Van Etten’s previous albums, there will be no songs off the album released prior to the record coming out. The ten tracks on We’ve Been Going About This All Wrong are designed to be listened to in order, all at once, so that a much larger story of hope, loss, longing and resilience can be told. This is, in itself, a subtle act of control, but in sharing these songs it remains an optimistic and generous one. There is darkness here but there is light too, and all of it is held together by Van Etten’s uncanny ability to both pierce the hearts of her listeners and make them whole again. Things are not dark, she reminds us, only darkish.


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Neil Young - Royce Hall,1971

Due 6th May 2022

Neil Young is set to deliver more rare live recordings from his extensive archives with the Neil Young Official Bootleg Series (OBS)which began last autumn with the release of Carnegie Hall 1970 (OBS1). On May 6th Young will release the next three installments in the bootleg series as follows: Royce Hall, 1971 was recorded January 30 on the UCLA campus, a solo acoustic gig. Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, 1971 – also solo acoustic -- is the last US show of Young’s 1971 solo tour. Citizen Kane Jr. Blues (Live at The Bottom Line), from New York City 1974 is a surprise set. Where analog tape exists in Young’s archive, these concerts have been mixed properly, providing much higher quality recordings than have previously existed – Royce Hall 1971 and Dorothy Chandler Pavilion 1971 are from the original analog masters. If no tape exists, the original bootleg has been restored and remastered to bring listeners the best audio experience possible - Citizen Kane Jr. Blues (Live at The Bottom Line), from New York City 1974. The original bootleg artwork has also been replicated wherever possible, lending each release that treasured collector’s vibe and conjuring the era they were first created in. The Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, 1971 album cover, for example, features the worn and faded ring of an LP.


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Also coming in May:

Dorothy Chandler Pavillion, 1971 - preorder yours here

Citizen Kane Jr. Blues (Live at The Bottom Line), from New York City 1974 - preorder here

 

Belle and Sebastian - A Bit of Previous

Due 6th May 2022

A Bit of Previous is the tenth studio album by Belle and Sebastian and their first full-length in seven years. This may be surprising to anyone following the recent life pursuits of the Glasgow 7-piece: a trilogy of EPs; a soundtrack for the directorial debut of The Inbetweeners’ Simon Bird; The Boaty Weekender – a 3000 capacity star-studded four-day music festival on a cruise liner sailing the Mediterranean; a live album showcasing the band’s present-day iteration as savvy main stage entertainers; and in 2020 a collaborative project with fans called ‘Protecting The Hive’. But in all these idiosyncratic endeavours, as intrinsic to the band’s DNA as the stage invasion at the end of each of their shows, a full-length has eluded us. A Bit Of Previous was recorded in Belle and Sebastian’s hometown of Glasgow when plans to fly to Los Angeles in spring of 2020 were scrapped due to the pandemic. Says Murdoch in the liner notes: “We did it together, us and the city. This record was the first ‘full’ LP recording for B&S in Glasgow since Fold Your Hands Child, 1999. We clocked in every morning, we played our songs, we wrote together, we tried new things, we took the proverbial lump of clay, and we threw it every day.” A Bit Of Previous is a classic Belle and Sebastian album preoccupied with songs and melodies that won’t leave your head and lyrics that can make you smile and ponder and sometimes be melancholic. The result is one the most diverse, hands-on and thrilling entries in the bands catalogue, self-produced and recorded (with contributions from Brian McNeill, Matt Wiggins, Kevin Burleigh and Shawn Everett). ‘Young And Stupid’ is a stuttering folk rock earworm that faces the passage of time with wry ennui, ‘Come On Home’ with its warm fireside piano evokes a handing over of the generational baton, while the deceptively feelgood, choir-backed ‘If They’re Shooting At You’ reads like a poignant ode to defiance and survival. A Bit of Previous is also scattered with big, occasionally delirious pop moments. ‘Unnecessary Drama’ rips through a cacophony of overdriven riffs and a droning harmonica that borders on the unhinged and is one of the band’s heaviest outings since, well, ever. The 140+ bpm ’Talk To Me Talk To Me’ is ablaze with euro synths and keyboard horns as the voices of Murdoch and Martin intertwine on a breathless chorus. ‘Working Boy in New York City’ exists in a parallel universe where the band did in fact make it to California – such is the escapist bliss of its sloping flute and bittersweet funk. On the other side of the spectrum are some of Belle and Sebastian’s most moving ballads. Tender finger-picked paean to a lover ‘Do It For Your Country’ and doo-wop-inflicted ‘Sea Of Sorrow’ showcase Murdoch’s tenor at its most bare and affecting, while Stevie Jackson contributes lovelorn country waltz ‘Deathbed of My Dreams’. So what is a A Bit of Previous? It’s a bit of everything, and a lot of what makes Belle and Sebastian so special and enduring. It’s a band tackling age and growing older with grace, irreverence, musical bravado and lyrical exactitude and emerging as an endless source of energy and reinvention.


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Warpaint - Radiate Like This

Due 6th May 2022

“Radiate Like This” - Warpaint’s much anticipated new record, not to mention their first in almost 6 years - arrives with its own very modern mythology intact, continuing the strange, brilliant, beautiful story of the band and quite neatly picking up where “Heads Up” left off. If the previous album was the coming of age, “Radiate Like This” presents Warpaint mk II in all their glory, a luminous coalescence of sound and vision which stubbornly belies its genesis, with the quartet of Kokal, Theresa Wayman, Stella Mozgawa and Jenny Lee Lindberg all recording their parts separately in various cities. “It’s the first time we’ve ever made an album like that, but in a weird way, it made us take our time with everything”, muses Kokal. “The process felt more meditative, less rushed”. This new sense of quiet confidence can be heard all through the album, in the hushed, slow build of first single “Champion” the beguiling push pull of “Proof”, the delicate intricacy and complexity of tracks like “Melting” and the winking “Send Nudes”. It’s an album that pulsates with ideas, energy and- most crucially – gorgeous melodies. Listen on in wonder.


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Peaness - World Full of Worry

Due 6th May 2022

Hot on the heels of a live session for Marc Riley at BBC 6music, Chester indie-pop trio PEANESS are delighted to finally be able to announce details of their long-awaited debut album World Full Of Worry, set for release through the band’s own label, Totally Snick Records.


‘How I’m Feeling’ is the second single to be taken from forthcoming debut album World Full of Worry, and serves as the perfect taste of what fans can expect from the record.


Commenting on the track, the band said: “In an unfulfilling job? Need a shake up with something in your life or you’ll go mad? Well, that’s ‘How I’m Feeling’ and it can’t be ignored anymore! Amongst self loathing and melancholy there are sparks of determination and a belief that you deserve more. I hope it works out.”


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Killer Mike - R.A.P Music

Due 13th May 2022

R.A.P. Music, the fifth studio album by rapper Killer Mike was originally released in 2012 and is finally back in print, with a bright green vinyl version available exclusively in indie stores. Production was handled by rapper and producer Jamie "El-P" Meline; the album was the first collaboration between Killer Mike and El-P, who would later form the critically acclaimed duo Run The Jewels.


R.A.P. Music received widespread acclaim from music critics. It landed on the year end best album lists of Entertainment Weekly, Consequence Of Sound, Complex, Chicago Tribune, Paste, NPR, Pitchfork, Rolling Stone, Stereogum, Spin, Vulture, Village Voice, and many more.


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The Black Keys - Dropout Boogie

Due 13th May 2022

After 10 albums, the last five of which have gone top 10 or better, six Grammy awards, and sold-out tours around the world, The Black Keys are back: the duo, called ‘America’s Most Trusted Band’ by Stephen Colbert, and ‘One of the best rock’n’roll bands on the planet’ by Uncut, releases its eleventh studio album, Dropout Boogie, via Nonesuch Records. The first single, ‘Wild Child’, is available now along with a video directed by the band’s longtime collaborator Bryan Schlam. Dropout Boogie features collaborations with Billy F. Gibbons (ZZ Top), Greg Cartwright (Reigning Sound), and Angelo Petraglia (Kings of Leon). Dropout Boogie will be released one day before the twentieth anniversary of The Black Keys’ first album, The Big Come Up. As they have done their entire career, the duo of Dan Auerbach and Patrick Carney wrote all of the material in the studio, and the new album captures a number of first takes that hark back to the stripped-down blues rock of their early days making music together in Akron, Ohio basements. “That’s always been the beauty of the thing Pat and I do. It’s instant,” Auerbach says. “We’ve never really had to work at it. Whenever we’d get together, we’d just make music, you know? We didn’t know what we were going to do, but we’d just do it and it would sound cool. It’s the natural chemistry Pat and I have. Being in a band this long is a testament to that. It was a real gift that we were given. I mean, the odds of being plopped down a block-and-a-half from each other in Akron, Ohio – it just seems crazy.” After hashing out initial ideas as a duo at Auerbach’s Nashville-based Easy Eye Sound studio, Auerbach and Carney welcomed new collaborators Billy F. Gibbons, Greg Cartwright, and Angelo Petraglia to the Dropout Boogie sessions. Although The Black Keys previously co-wrote songs with frequent producer/collaborator Danger Mouse, this is the first time they have invited multiple new contributors to work simultaneously on one of their own albums. Both Cartwright and Petraglia can be heard on the new album’s first single, ‘Wild Child’. “Living in Nashville and making records here has opened both of our minds to that experience a little bit more,” said Auerbach. “I knew Pat would love working with both of these guys, so we decided we’d give it a shot. It was the first time we’d ever really done that. It was fun as hell. We just sat around a table with acoustic guitars and worked out a song ahead of time.” “The cool thing with Greg is that he wants to approach stuff with a story in mind – there’s a plot, almost,” added Carney. Available as a heavyweight 140g black vinyl and extremely limited (550 copies) on 140g white vinyl exclusively available from Record Store Day stores.


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Florence + The Machine - Dance Fever

Due 13th May 2022

Dance Fever was recorded predominately in London over the course of the pandemic in anticipation of the world’s reopening. It conjures up what Florence missed most in the midst of lockdown -clubs, dancing at festivals, being in the whirl of movement and togetherness -and the hope of reunions to come. It’s the album that brings back the very best of Florence – the festival headlining Boudicca, wielding anthems like a flaming sword. Just before the pandemic Florence had become fascinated by choreomania, a Renaissance phenomenon in which groups of people - sometimes thousands - danced wildly to the point of exhaustion, collapse and death. The imagery resonated with Florence, who had been touring nonstop for more than a decade, and in lockdown felt oddly prescient. The image and concept of dance, and choreomania, remained central as Florence wove her own experiences of dance - a discipline she turned to in the early days of sobriety - with the folkloric elements of a moral panic from the Middle Ages. In recent times of torpor and confinement, dance offered propulsion, energy and a way of looking at music more choreographically. Starting, as ever, armed with a notebook of poems and ideas, Florence had just arrived in New York in March 2020 to begin recording the record with Jack Antonoff when Covid-19 forced a retreat to London. Holed up at home, the songs began to transform, with nods to dance, folk, ‘70s Iggy Pop, longing-for-the-road folk tracks a la Lucinda Williams or Emmylou Harris and more. Once back in London, ‘My Love’ was one particular track that shapeshifted from one entity to another with the help of Dave Bayley from Glass Animals. Welch had written the song in her kitchen as a “sad little poem”, and when she recorded it acoustically it just didn’t seem to work. Bayley suggested using synths and it soon expanded with floor-filling, chest-thumping energy. With Dave’s love of synths and Florence’s fascination with all things gothic and creepy a kind of “Nick Cave at the club” sound started to emerge to shape the record. Lyrically, she took inspiration from the tragic heroines of pre-Raphaelite art, the gothic fiction of Carmen Maria Machado and Julia Armfield, the visceral wave of folk horror film from The Wicker Man and The Witch to Midsommar. Dance Fever is an album that sees Florence at the peak of her powers, coming into a fully realised self-knowledge, poking sly fun at her own self-created persona, playing with ideas of identity, masculine and feminine, redemptive, celebratory, stepping fully into her place in the iconic pantheon. The album is available as a standard black double LP and indie exclusive grey double LP. Both are presented in a gatefold sleeve with printed inners and etching on 4th side.


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Kevin Morby - This is a Photograph

Due 13th May 2022

The story begins with Kevin Morby absentmindedly flipping through a box of old family photos in the basement of his childhood home in Kansas City. Just hours before, at a family dinner, his father had collapsed in front of him and had to be rushed to the hospital. That night Morby still felt the shock and fear lodged in his bones. So he gazed at the images until one of the pictures jumped out at him: his father as a young man, proud and strong and filled with confidence, posing on a lawn with his shirt off. This was in January of 2020. As the months went on and the world dramatically changed around him, Morby felt an eerie similarity between his feelings of that night and the atmosphere of those spring days. Fear, anxiety, hope and resilience all churning together. The themes began twisting in his mind. History, trauma and the grand fight against time. Having the courage to dream, even while knowing the tragedy that often awaits those who dare to dream. While his father regained his strength, Morby meditated on these ideas. And then, he headed to Memphis. He moved into the Peabody Hotel and spent his days paying tribute and genuflecting to the dreamers he admired. In the evening, he would return to his room and document his ideas on a makeshift recording set-up, with just his guitar and a microphone. The songs, elegiac in nature, befitting all he had seen, poured out of him. Produced by Sam Cohen (who also worked on Morby’s Singing Saw and Oh My God), This Is A Photograph features musical contributions from longtime staples of Morby’s live band, as well as old friends and new collaborators alike. If Oh My God saw Morby getting celestial and in constant motion and Sundowner was a study in localized intent, This Is A Photograph finds Morby making an Americana paean, a visceral life and death, blood on the canvas outpouring. As Morby reminds us early on, time is undefeated. So what do we do while we’re still here? This is a photograph of that sense of yearning.


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Beach House - Once Twice Melody

Due 20th May 2022

Once Twice Melody is the 8th studio album by Beach House. It is a double album, featuring 18 songs presented in 4 chapters. Across these songs, many types of style and song structures can be heard. Songs without drums, songs centered around acoustic guitar, mostly electronic songs with no guitar, wandering and repetitive melodies, songs built around the string sections. In addition to new sounds, many of the drum machines, organs, keyboards and tones that listeners may associate with previous Beach House records remain present throughout many of the compositions. Beach House is Victoria Legrand, lead singer and multi-instrumentalist, and Alex Scally, guitarist and multi-instrumentalist. They write all of their songs together. Once Twice Melody is the first album produced entirely by the band. The live drums are by James Barone (same as their 2018 album, 7), and were recorded at Pachyderm studio in Minnesota and United Studio in Los Angeles. For the first time, a live string ensemble was used. Strings were arranged by David Campbell. The writing and recording of Once Twice Melody began in 2018 and was completed in July of 2021. Most of the songs were created during this time, though a few date back over the previous 10 years. Most of the recording was done at Apple Orchard Studio in Baltimore. Once Twice Melody was mixed largely by Alan Moulder but a few tracks were also mixed by Caesar Edmunds, Trevor Spencer, and Dave Fridmann.


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The Clash - Combat Rock

Due 20th May 2022