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Next Week in Music | Jan. 2-8 • The Short List: 9 Titles You Want to Hear

If there's a better way to kick off 2023 than this, I'd like to hear it.

A rock god comes back with a bang, some old punks do it for the kids, and the greatest Canadian artist most people have never heard rolls a seven. If there’s a better way to kick off 2023, I’d like to hear it. But first, I can’t wait to hear these releases:


Lies They Tell Our Children

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Look, this is our 13th album,” incendiary Pittsburgh punk rockers Anti-Flag declare. “There’s no other way to put it: Lies They Tell Our Children is the best f-ing version of Anti-Flag we have ever been. We haven’t been afforded the privilege and ability to spend every day together writing and focusing on every detail of an album in well over a decade and I think you can feel that collaboration and collectiveness in these songs more than any other record of ours. That collaboration was only extrapolated on with the inclusion of the eight guests who are featured on the album, spanning genres, years of friendship, and a vast array of perspectives. The album itself is the first conceptual album the band has ever done, spawned out of a compulsive need to not just comment on the dystopian corporate wasteland we all face but to trace it back to the origin of this fate; the political policies, laws, cultural shifts, and lineage of injustice that have led us to the world we live in today.” As mentioned, the album features multiple notable guest appearances, including Rise Against’s Tim McIlrath, Killswitch Engage’s Jesse Leach and more. Lies They Tell Our Children was recorded, produced and mixed by Jon Lundin.”

Eamon McGrath
Death And Taxes / Fireworks And Roses / Ghosts Of The 401 / In The Valley Of The Shadow Of Death / Liar’s Paradise / March 22, 2022 / Trout River Conspiracy

Canadian indie singer-songwriter Eamon McGrath is hitting the ground running in 2023 by releasing not one, not two, but seven new albums. I’ve heard them all, and each one is better than the last. Here’s a quick rundown of what you’re in for, in his own words (to order the albums, go HERE):

Death & Taxes: Circling horns and synths dominate this wild and untamed sonic exploration, brought to life by a deep obsession with Sun Ra, Hawkwind, Richard Buckner, and Getatchew Mekurya’s work with The Ex.

Fireworks And Roses: the sound of psychedelia, alt-country and Americana — in the vein of Lee Hazlewood, Gram Parsons and Scud Mountain Boys — permeates through tales of longing, nostalgia and heartbreaking drug ballads.

Ghosts Of The 401: Written after and inspired by the tragic and untimely death of drummer Adam Balsam, this album weaves songs out of stories cultivated along the white and yellow lines of Ontario’s longest and wildest automotive artery as it winds and curves beneath a cold Great Lakes sky. For fans of Einstürzende Neubauten and John Fahey, Hiroshi Yoshimura and Blue Rodeo.

In The Valley Of The Shadow Of Death: The marriage between acoustic and electric continues, but in perhaps the most extreme ways of this group of new music. Equal parts Wolf Eyes and Townes Van Zandt; Harold Budd and Jackson C. Frank.

Liar’s Paradise: Finding a continuum between Lucinda Williams, The Stooges and R.E.M., this channels the lost, cold, grey Great Lakes landscape into something melancholic and heart-warming. Beautiful, evocative music is delivered with the energy of a punk band.

March 22, 2022: Recorded live off the floor with no overdubs and mastered by Andy Magoffin at House of Miracles while on tour in Ontario, this recording captures the longest-running incarnation of the Electric Band at the top of its game. Featuring Connor Ellinger on drums and Tavo Diez de Bonilla on bass.

Trout River Conspiracy: A musical novel that charts a chronological history of Newfoundland beginning with the life and death of Shanawdithit and ending with the disappearance of Danny Pickett. The ghosts of Western, Central, Fogo Island, and St John’s weave their way throughout the songs, and both traditional and new instruments create arrangements that wash against the listener like teary North Atlantic waves on a jagged, rocky shore.

Iggy Pop
Every Loser

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Every Loser is Iggy Pop’s 19th solo album and his first to be released via a partnership between Atlantic and Gold Tooth Records, the new label founded by the album’s Grammy-winning, multi-platinum executive producer Andrew Watt. “I’m the guy with no shirt who rocks; Andrew and Gold Tooth get that, and we made a record together the old-fashioned way,” Iggy says. “The players are guys I’ve known since they were kids and the music will beat the shit out of you.” Every Loser harkens back to Iggy’s primordial roots while maintaining an undeniably modern lyrical point viewpoint and sonic palette. It is an exemplary album of primal rock ’n’ roll — a master class in the art of lashing out with unequalled intensity and unflappable wit. The result is 11 songs by the man who refused to go gently into that good night on his previous album, 2019’s somber and contemplative Free, and is once again charging fearlessly at life itself.