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Next Week in Music | Feb. 22-28 • The Short List: 8 Titles You Need to Hear

Alice, Be-Bop Deluxe, Dyland, the Gizz, Melvins, NOFX, Neil & Willie rule the roost.

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Some weeks it’s about quantity. Some weeks it’s about quality. This week there’s plenty of both to go around. See for yourself:

 


Be-Bop Deluxe
Drastic Plastic Deluxe Edition

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Drastic Plastic would be the final Be-Bop Deluxe album and was recorded in the summer of 1978 in the South of France at The Villa Saint Georges, Juan-les-Pins, utilising The Rolling Stones mobile studio, with final sessions taking place at The Manor Studio and Abbey Road Studios. The record saw Bill Nelson (vocals, guitars, keyboards), Charles Tumahai (bass, vocals), Andy Clark (keyboards) and Simon Fox (drums) venture into new musical styles, with the album being groundbreaking in its move to more “art rock” and “new wave” influences. In many ways it can be seen as the signpost to where Bill Nelson would head with his Red Noise project with a desire to continue to progress as an artist by pushing musical boundaries. This expanded deluxe reissue has been newly re-mastered from the original master tapes and features an additional 88 tracks (43 previously unreleased), stunning new 5.1 surround sound & stereo mixes from the original multi-track tapes by award-winning engineer Stephen W. Tayler, previously unreleased outtakes from the album sessions, a BBC Radio John Peel Show session from January 1978, along with a CD of Bill Nelson’s previously unreleased demos for the album A Feeling of Playing.”


Alice Cooper
Detroit Stories

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Named for the city that launched the original Alice Cooper group on the road to success, Detroit Stories follows last year’s Breadcrumbs EP as a modern-day homage to the toughest and craziest rock ’n’ roll scene there ever was. “Detroit was heavy rock central then,” explains Alice, “You’d play the Eastown and it would be Alice Cooper, Ted Nugent, The Stooges and The Who, for $4! The next weekend at the Grande it was MC5, Brownsville Station and Fleetwood Mac, or Savoy Brown or The Small Faces. You couldn’t be a soft-rock band or you’d get your ass kicked.”


Bob Dylan
1970: 50th Anniversary Collection

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “The recordings on 1970 were first released in a limited edition on Dec. 4 as part of the Bob Dylan 50th Anniversary Collection copyright extension series (which began in 2012). The buzz surrounding the 1970 performances, notably Dylan’s studio sit-down with George Harrison, created a demand for a broader release of these historic tracks. 1970 includes previously unreleased outtakes from the sessions that produced Self Portrait and New Morning as well as the complete May 1, 1970 studio recordings with Harrison, which capture the pair performing together on nine tracks, including Dylan originals (One Too Many Mornings, Gates of Eden, Mama, You Been On My Mind), covers (The Everly BrothersAll I Have to Do Is Dream, Carl PerkinsMatchbox) and more.”


King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard
L.W.

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard’s 17th studio album L.W. serves as a direct follow-up to last year’s full-length K.G., and is the third volume in the band’s explorations into microtonal tunings (which began with 2017’s Flying Microtonal Banana).  Serving as both a companion piece to its 2020 predecessor K.G. and a stand-alone work in its own right, L.W. sees the Melbourne-based innovators produce a truly original work. After a full decade of increasingly frenzied productivity, the inability to tour during 2020 and into 2021 allowed the band to find a window of time in which, as frontman Stu Mackenzie puts it, “reset our brains, and try to figure out how to do a different thing.”


Melvins 
Working With God

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Working With God is the new studio album from Melvins, featuring the 1983 lineup of Buzz Osborne, Dale Crover and Mike Dillard. This is the first time the trio have recorded together since Tres Cabrones. Working With God is Melvins’ 28th (yes, 28th) full-length studio release and their first since 2018’s Pinkus Abortion Technician. The band have been one of the most lauded hard rock bands to have helped develop the grunge and sludge scenes. The new album is one of their most melodic and playful records — not just another ‘metal’ record, this will translate easily to hard rock and even mainstream rock fans as well. The songs on the album are originals except for their take on Harry Nilsson’s classic Fuck You and the well-known Good Night Sweetheart that finishes off the album.


Willie Nelson
That’s Life

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Honoring the enduring influence and inspiration of Frank Sinatra (whose 105th birthday would have been celebrated on Dec. 12), That’s Life continues Willie’s longtime musical appreciation of Sinatra’s artistry and repertoire, an exploration exemplified by 2018’s My Way, which earned Willie the Grammy for Best Traditional Pop Solo Album. Willie’s second album of standards and classics made famous by Sinatra, That’s Life finds Nelson (who has penned a few standards himself including Crazy, Funny How Time Slips Away, On The Road Again and many more) inhabiting more of the most treasured songs in the Great American Songbook. Recorded in the spirit of the groundbreaking 1978 Stardust album (Willie is one of the first contemporary artists to “cover” the Great American Songbook), 2016’s Summertime: Willie Nelson Sings Gershwin (a Best Traditional Vocal Album Grammy Award winner) and 2018’s My Way, That’s Life pays fresh tribute to one of Willie’s life-long musical heroes.”


NOFX
Single Album

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Nearly 40 years in, what else is there to say about NOFX? And aside from the occasional negative headline, how can one of the pioneers of SoCal punk — a style hardly known for experimentation — surprise anyone these days? The answers lie on Single Album, NOFX’s 14th studio album. It is, as frontman and bassist Fat Mike describes, “a dark album.” That wasn’t the original intent. By early 2020, NOFX — which includes guitarist El Hefe, guitarist Eric Melvin, and drummer Smelly — had written and recorded enough songs for a planned double album to be released that fall. Like so much about 2020, those plans changed. “When you write a double album, you write differently,” Mike says. “I was writing really different songs, and some fun songs, but you have to make a double album interesting enough to listen to the whole way. I wanted to make a perfect double album, and I didn’t accomplish that. So I decided to just make a single album, hence the title.”


Neil Young & Crazy Horse
Way Down In The Rust Bucket

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “After recording Ragged Glory at Broken Arrow Ranch in the spring of 1990 and releasing it that September, Neil Young and Crazy Horse took the stage at The Catalyst in Santa Cruz on Nov. 13 to unleash the songs upon a live audience. In true Crazy Horse fashion, the incendiary show ran across three sets and over three hours, with songs like Love and Only Love and Like a Hurricane hypnotically stretching past ten minutes. The gig also marked the first time Danger Bird — a cut from Young’s 1975 album Zuma — was played for a live audience, thundering on into psychedelic six-string fireworks. Other live debuts on Way Down in the Rust Bucket include Surfer Joe and Moe the Sleaze, Love to Burn, Farmer John, Over and Over, Fuckin’ Up, Mansion on the Hill, and Love and Only Love.”