Next Week in Music | Aug. 9-15 • New Books

Metallica, Nico, Daptone, Bolan, Camel, Hacketst & the rest of the latest reads.


There’s nothing like lazing away a summer day outside with a good book. If you still haven’t got around to it this year, better hurry: September isn’t far off. Thankfully, there are plenty of good new options to lure you out to the hammock. Read all about ’em:


Metallica: The $24.95 Book
By Ben Apatoff

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Metallica: The $24.95 Book looks at Metallica’s cultural significance, with chapters devoted to each member, each album, touring, fashion, books, film, influences, fandom, history, and more, exploring the band’s ideologies along the way. With more than 125 million records sold worldwide, Metallica are the biggest metal band of all time. Four decades into their unparalleled career, Metallica are a massive cultural force that drastically changed the sound of popular music by creating their own rules. Yet for all their popularity, Metallica can seem impenetrable, raising more questions and inspiring more discourse as their mythos grows. Written by dedicated fan and music journalist Ben Apatoff, with previously unpublished photos and a foreword by What Are You Doing Here? author Laina Dawes, The $24.95 Book provides an in-depth look at the band and their music that both die-hard fans and newcomers can enjoy.”

You Are Beautiful and You Are Alone: The Biography of Nico
By Jennifer Otter Bickerdike

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:You Are Beautiful And You Are Alone is a new biography of Nico, the mysterious singer best known for her work with The Velvet Underground and her solo album Chelsea Girl. Her life is tangled in myth — much of it of her own invention. Rock ’n’ roll cultural historian Jennifer Bickerdike delivers a definitive book that unravels the story while making a convincing case for Nico’s enduring importance. Over the course of her career, Nico was an ever-evolving myth: art film house actress, highly coveted fashion model, Dietrich of punk, femme fatale, Chelsea girl, Garbo of goth, the last bohemian, heroin junkie. Lester Bangs described her as ‘a true enigma.’ At age 27, she became Andy Warhol’s newest Superstar, featuring in his one commercial hit film Chelsea Girls and garnering the position of chanteuse for The Velvet Underground. It wasn’t Nico’s musical chops which got her the gig; it was her striking beauty. Her seeming otherworldly and unattainable presence was further amplified by her reputation for dating rock stars (Brian Jones, Bob Dylan, Jim Morrison, among others). She became famous for being Nico. Yet her talent and her contribution to rock culture are often overlooked. She spent most of her career as a solo artist on the road, determined to make music, seemingly against all the odds, enduring empty concert halls, abusive fans, and the often perilous reality of being an aging artist and drug addict. She created mesmerizing and unique projects that inspired a generation of artists, including Henry Rollins, Morrissey, Siousxie Sioux and Iggy Pop. Drawing on archives at the Andy Warhol Museum, record labels and various private collections, featuring exclusive new interviews from those who knew her best, including Iggy Pop and Danny Fields, this book reveals the complicated, often compromised, self-destructive and always headstrong woman behind the one-dimensional myths.”

It Ain’t Retro: Daptone Records & The 21st-Century Soul Revolution
By Jessica Lipsky

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Soul is the most powerful expression of American music — a distinct combination of roots, migration, race, culture, and politics packaged together for your dancing pleasure. But if you thought the sounds of Motown or Stax Records died along with 8-tracks and macramé, you’d be wrong. For two decades, Daptone Records has churned out hard funk and such beautiful soul that these records sparked a musical revolution. Run by a collective of soul-obsessed producers and musicians, the Brooklyn-based independent label launched the careers of artists such as Amy Winehouse, Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings, Charles Bradley and Bruno Mars. Daptone’s records — and those of the larger soul revival scene — pay homage but never lip service to the original artists, proving that soul is still culturally relevant, and just as exciting as ever. It Ain’t Retro charts this revival’s players, sounds, and tectonic shifts over the past 20 years, taking you from dingy clubs where soul crazed DJs packed the dancefloor, to just uptown where some of the genre’s heaviest musicians jumpstarted the renaissance in a basement studio, and all the way to the White House. This definitive tale of Daptone Records’ soulful revolution chronicles the label’s history, players, and sounds while dissecting the scene’s cultural underpinnings, which continue to reverberate in pop music. The book also contains rare and unseen images of Daptone artists past and present, including Sharon Jones, Charles Bradley, Lee Fields, Antibalas, The Sugarman 3, The Budos Band, and more.”

Led Zeppelin Vinyl: The Essential Collection
By Ross Halfin

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Led Zeppelin released only eight studio albums and no singles over the course of their 12-year career, but to date there are more than 1,000 singles and 2,000 LPs in the market. This definitive volume illustrates in full color some of the rarest and most interesting vinyl releases, including one-of-a-kind rarities, bizarre regional variations, official albums and historic recordings of legendary concerts, sometimes featuring handmade artwork or colored vinyl. The vinyl, labels and covers have been documented by photographer Ross Halfin in superb detail and are annotated with details of their release. In addition, the book includes over 40 pages of the most up-to-date comprehensive discography ever compiled on the band, with forensic detail. All known album and single vinyl releases from around the world are listed with catalogue numbers, release or recording dates and additional notes. A labor of love, Led Zeppelin Vinyl is a must-have for fans of the group and vinyl enthusiasts. It is a paean of praise to vinyl artwork and graphic design: The illustrations are explosive and surreal, playful, experimental and subversive, interpreting multiple artistic disciplines with flair and wit.”

Mary Lou Williams: Music for the Soul
By Deanna Witkowski

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “In Mary Lou Williams: Music for the Soul, Deanna Witkowski brings a fresh perspective to the life and music of the legendary jazz pianist-composer Mary Lou Williams (1910-81). As a fellow jazz pianist-composer, adult convert to Catholicism, and liturgical composer, Witkowski offers unique insight gleaned from a 20-year journey with Williams as her chosen musical and spiritual mentor. Viewing Williams’s musical and corporal acts of mercy as part of a singular effort to create community no matter the context, Witkowski examines how Williams created networks of support and friendship through her decades long letter correspondence with various women religious, her charitable work, and her tireless efforts to perform jazz in churches, community centers, concert halls, and schools. Throughout this fascinating story told with equal amounts of deep love and scholarly research, Witkowski illumines Williams’s passionate mantra that “jazz is healing to the soul.”

We Never Knew Just What it Was … The Story of the Chad Mitchell Trio
By Mike Murphey

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Of all the groups to emerge during the folk era of the 1960s, The Chad Mitchell Trio were arguably the best. Their complex harmonies, sense of comedic timing and stage presence were unique to the folk movement. They didn’t enjoy the commercial success of some other groups because their material made political and social statements that radio and TV refused to air. They were wildly popular, though, on college campuses through America during this turbulent time and fostered political and social awareness among thousands of young men and women as they faced the tumultuous era ahead. When folk reunions became popular in the ’80s, fans and historians agreed that The Chad Mitchell Trio were one group that would never take the stage again. Then came a call. Once again, they had the music. As their friend Tom Paxton noted, “Sometimes the only thing people have in common is musical talent. But if they have that one thing, they’d be fools not to use it.”

Curved Air in the 1970s
By Laura Shenton

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Beat Instrumental summed it up in 1971: ‘In a few short months Curved Air have emerged from the unknown depths to become one of the most talked-about bands around. By a combination of record company promotion (ranging from ads to that pretty patterned album) and a word-of-mouth reputation gained from their gigs, the group became a name before they had really done that much. Such a situation can be worrying for a band but Curved Air have the confidence to carry on unaffected.’ Propelled into stardom at an exhilarating speed, due to clever marketing and virtuosity in their musicianship, particularly violinist Darryl Way, the story of Curved Air in the 1970s is of a band that burned brightly before collapsing well ahead of their time. Fronted by the exotic Sonja Kristina, they supported Jethro Tull, Deep Purple, Johnny Winter, Edgar Winter and B.B. King in huge stadiums, and several famous names passed through their ranks. These included Stewart Copeland, who went on to form The Police. Every lineup of Curved Air presented a stellar range of talent across a musically fascinating contribution throughout the decade. This book documents it all, from the groundbreaking albums like Air Conditioning and Phantasmagoria to the lineup changes and traumas which caused the band to disband for the first time in 1976.”

Marc Bolan: Tyrannosaurus Rex and T.Rex: Every Album, Every Song
By Peter Gallagher

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “For many, T.Rex founder Marc Bolan remains forever frozen in time as the poster boy of glam, the pop-rock genre he effectively launched with his March 1971 Top of the Pops appearance to promote Hot Love, the band’s first No. 1 single. To see Bolan only in this light is to view him through too narrow a focus. In John’s Children he flirted with modernist art-rock. He sang folk songs of an otherworldly England in Tyrannosaurus Rex and became a teen idol while straddling the singles and album charts like a rock colossus and he also experimented with his unique brand of interstellar soul. Finally, he proclaimed himself ‘the Godfather of Punk’ and became its patron, touring with The Damned and giving several major new wave acts their first TV exposure. This book examines all aspects of Bolan’s career, from the genre-defying My People Were Fair and Had Sky in Their Hair… through the transitional A Beard of Stars and T.Rex albums, the misunderstood Zinc Alloy and the Hidden Riders of Tomorrow and the should-have-been comeback Futuristic Dragon. Along the way, it discusses Unicorn, the defining document of the Tyrannosaurus Rex years, and the essential T.Rex trilogy of Electric Warrior, The Slider and Tanx, arguing why they should be regarded as such.”

Steve Hackett: Every Album, Every Song
By Geoffrey Feakes

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Guitarist Steve Hackett first came to many fans’ attention when he joined Genesis in 1971. Following seven excellent albums with the band, he went his own way in 1977. He had already kickstarted his solo career with the critically acclaimed Voyage of the Acolyte in 1975, but 24 studio albums followed, making him the most prolific member of the classic Genesis lineup. In the 1980s, he also formed GTR with Yes guitarist Steve Howe and they enjoyed commercial success with a hit album and single. Steve’s solo work has embraced rock, prog, classical, blues, pop, jazz and world music, all performed with style and panache and his most recent album At the Edge of Light released in 2019 is perhaps his best since the classic Spectral Mornings in 1979. On stage, he has kept the Genesis flame burning brightly, performing the band’s classic material from the 1970s alongside his own work. He remains one of the most innovative and influential musicians in rock. This book examines, in detail, each one of Steve’s studio albums and traces his long and varied history. Collaborations, live albums and compilations are also discussed, making this the most comprehensive guide to the music Hackett yet published. Whether the reader is a diehard fan or someone wishing to catch up on his post Genesis work, this is essential reading.”

Camel: Every Album, Every Song
By Hamish Kuzminski

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Formed in Guildford, Surrey in England in 1971, Camel, though not directly part of the genre, were strongly influenced by the bands emerging from Canterbury in Kent at the same time. In particular, the band mixed humour and profundity, in a similar way to bands like Caravan and Hatfield and the North. However, and there’s a clue in the name, and their music seamlessly integrated Middle Eastern and North African themes, forms and rhythms — as well as jazz, folk and classical elements — to create an exciting and exotic new strand to the ballooning world of progressive rock in the early 1970s. After two critically well-received, but unsuccessful albums, Camel came to transatlantic attention in 1975 with the release of purely instrumental The Snow Goose, inspired by Paul Gallico’s novella of the same name. The chart success of that album led to a sold-out performance in 1975 at the Royal Albert Hall (with the London Symphony Orchestra, no less, in tow), and cemented the band’s place in the ongoing story of progressive rock. The band has had its fair share of tragedy, including the death of founder Peter Bardens and serious illness to guitarist and flame-carrier Andy Latimer. Nonetheless, with Latimer still at the helm, and after almost 50 years and 14 studio albums, Camel continue to perform to rapturous receptions across the world. This track by track analysis takes the reader along on their half-century journey, carving out a special, inimitable niche in British rock music.”

Neon Screams: How Drill, Trap and Bashment Made Music New Again
By Kit Mackintosh

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Examining new genres from the U.K. and across the Atlantic, including mumble rap, Brooklyn drill, trap dancehall and Afrobeats, Neon Screams explores the dystopias and dissociative transcendence offered by this boundary-pushing music. With a foreword by Simon Reynolds, Neon Screams explores the plethora of new street genres that have emerged at the turn of the 2020s. Neon Screams is a manifesto, a rallying cry for the new musical futurism. Taking street music’s embrace of Auto-Tune in the late 2000s as his starting point, Kit Mackintosh launches you through a whirlwind tour of the last decade of cutting-edge music, championing the modern genres still uncovering the sonic impossible. Beginning where most future music chronicles end, Mackintosh establishes a new pantheon of pioneers and innovators. Offering dizzying insights into the likes of Future, Young Thug, Migos and Vybz Kartel, Neon Screams is conceptual weaponry to use against all those who say music isn’t what it used to be. Part polemic, part synesthetic possession, Neon Screams is essential reading for everyone eager to uncover the new frontiers of future music.”

Who Killed Cock Robin?: British Folk Songs of Crime and Punishment
By Stephen Sedley & Martin Carthy

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “An entertaining and enlightening compendium at the intersection of two great British folk traditions: Song and encounters with the law. At the heart of traditional songs rest the concerns of ordinary people. And folk throughout the centuries have found themselves entangled with the law: abiding by it, breaking it, and being caught and punished by it. Who Killed Cock Robin? is an anthology of just such songs compiled by one of Britain’s most senior judges, Stephen Sedley, and best-loved folk singers, Martin Carthy. The songs collected here are drawn from manuscripts, broadsides, and oral tradition. They are grouped according to the various categories of crime and punishment, from poaching to the gallows. Each section contains a historical introduction, and every song is presented with a melody, lyrics, and an illuminating commentary that explores its origins and sources. Together, they present unique, sometimes comic, often tragic, and always colorful insight into the past, while preserving an important body of song for future generations.”

Music: The Business (8th edition)
By Ann Harrison

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “This essential and highly acclaimed guide, now updated and revised in its eighth edition, explains the business of the British music industry. Drawing on her extensive experience as a media lawyer, Ann Harrison offers a unique, expert opinion on the deals, the contracts and the business as a whole. She examines in detail the changing face of the music industry and provides absorbing and up-to-date case studies. Whether you’re a recording artist, songwriter, music business manager, industry executive, publisher, journalist, media student, accountant or lawyer, this practical and comprehensive guide is indispensable reading. Fully revised and updated.”