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Next Week in Music | March 13-19 • The Short List: 11 Titles You Want to Hear

I've got bad news, good news and better news — and most of it revolves around U2.


The bad news: Aside from U2‘s reimagined retrospective Songs Of Surrender, there are no big-name releases next week. The good news: Far as I know, Bono and co. won’t be forcing this one down the throat of everyone’s iPhone. The better news: Eiyher way, you should have plenty of time to check out some new releases from deserving lesser-known artists, including some of these:


The Answer

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “After a long seven-year hiatus, Northern Irish rockers The Answer are set to make a spectacular and long-awaited return with the brand-new studio album Sundowners — scheduled for release on St. Patrick’s Day. Says lead singer Cormac Neeson: “We’ve been through a lot as a band, toured the world, made six great records we’re all proud of, and always done our best to make honest and timeless music that connects with rock and music fans in general. After six albums and a lot of road miles we felt we needed to step back from it all and reset. Whilst that wasn’t an easy decision, with retrospect it’s possibly the best decision we’ve ever made because after seven years away we all came back fired up and the end result is an album we’ve been waiting to make our whole lives … full of good time rock ’n’ roll and positive energy created by four brothers who quite frankly just really missed each other. We’re back and we’re ready to bring our best album ever to you!”

The Band Of Heathens
Simple Things

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “With their eighth studio album Simple Things, The Band Of Heathens came home — geographically, as they returned to their longtime base of Austin for the recording; sonically, in an embrace of the rootsy, guitar-based rock with which they made their name; and thematically, with lyrics that speak to appreciating friends and family and our limited time on this planet. It’s a confident, assured statement of a group finding its place in the world amid uncertain and troubled times. “It was a return to embracing our influences, our natural instincts, the way we sound when we get on stage,“ says guitarist and vocalist Gordy Quist. “With the subject matter, there’s a sentiment of focusing on what’s important as we go through this journey together — don’t waste time, because this is all we’ve got.” Adds guitarist and vocalist Ed Jurdi: “Gordy and I each have a natural sound when we sing, but there’s something even more special and unique when our voices blend together. So it was just about harnessing and embracing that. Good, mid-tempo rock and roll-that’s our breadbasket, and there’s not a lot of that music being made right now. The new songs embody the spirit of our new record: survival, gratitude, resiliency, and a new-found focus on the simple things that make life worth living. Simple Things is an authentic and powerful album that showcases the Heathens at our best.”

Weapons Of Choice

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Formed in Wisconsin in 2004 with the idea they were better together than apart, the men of Carbellion have been forging an original path in music since day one. The members — Brandon Bauer (guitar), Cameron Kellenberger (vocals), Brent Nimz (drums), Jamie Damrow (lead guitar), Steve Sheppard (bass guitar) — fuse elements of grunge and thrash with a traditional rock structure to deliver driving anthems of lives lived on the outer rim of society. Their sound follows in the tradition of forward-thinking groups like Clutch and Alice In Chains, but with hooks and melodies ready for radio. “We always tell people we make rock music,” explains vocalist Kellenberger, “but that always leads to more questions. It’s not exactly metal, but it’s not radio rock. We tune down, and we have an edgier sound, but my vocals are mostly clean. It’s nothing like what you heard in the ’80s or ’90s, and there’s not a lot like us around today. We appreciate comparisons, but we pride ourselves on being original.” Weapons Of Choice, Carbellion’s third full-length album, pulls from nearly twenty years of experience and lessons learned by fire to deliver the group’s most compelling release to date.”

Cash Box Kings
Oscar’s Motel

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:The Cash Box Kings, co-led by real-deal Chicago blues vocalist and songwriter Oscar “Mr. 43rd Street” Wilson and Madison songwriter, harmonica giant and singer Joe Nosek, play masterfully raw, unvarnished, old-school ensemble blues. Wilson’s huge, emotive vocals and Nosek’s blistering harmonica fuel their razor-sharp original songs and always incisive reinvention of obscure blues classics. On their new Alligator Records album, Oscar’s Motel (their third for the label and 11th overall), The Cash Box Kings bring contemporary authority and old-school authenticity to each of the album’s 11 tracks. The band — featuring guitarist Billy Flynn, drummer Kenny “Beedy Eyes” Smith, bassist John W. Lauler and keyboardist Lee Kanehira — opens a door into the intoxicating spirit and sounds of 1950s and 1960s Chicago-based blues, and then they bring it all right up to the minute with Wilson and Nosek’s original, instantly memorable songs.”

The Clamor
The Clamor

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “I have spent so many years working in other mediums, film, theater, fiction, and working in the art world, that I wanted to return to my roots, where I feel most at home being creative,” says The Clamor’s Aaron Louis. “That’s music. Like a lot of people, I had a pretty wrecked childhood and the only thing that kept me sane was being a part of the insane punk rock community around me, and listening to and making music and I miss it more and more as I get older. The album is not me trying to recreate that atmosphere but a place to begin where I left off. Even if that just means having fun — like not being too precious, finding ways to be vulnerable, and embracing the collision of styles, all of which I hope you feel in this album. I like this moment in my life and feel like this album was a way to create a sort of sonic snapshot of what I’ve been thinking about and what’s important to me. And thinking of how fast it goes. Like in Cardiac Soundtrack — I wondered what it was that the great Joe Strummer might have been listening to when he had his heart attack. U-Roy? The Jay Tees? What will I go out listening to? And what music can I leave behind?”

Daddy Long Legs
Street Sermons

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Daddy Long Legs are New York City’s most diabolical rhythm & blues street gang, and the band’s fourth studio album represents a wellspring of bottled-up feelings and emotions that need to be taken to the streets. Produced by Oakley Munson of The Black Lips at Old Soul Studios in Catskill, N.Y., the band expands upon a sound that’s all their own and features guest appearances from punk rock legend Wreckless Eric and The Lovin’ Spoonful’s John Sebastian. In dark times, Daddy Long Legs continue to shine their light everywhere they go, leaving a piece of themselves on stage every night because it’s in them and it’s got to come out. Over the last decade these gentlemen have burned down houses the world over with their explosive fire ceremony and have amassed a cult-like following all their own with a tough to beat reputation for being one of the finest live acts on the road today. Written and recorded against a backdrop of political tension, riots in the streets and a deeply uncertain future, Street Sermons is a testament to triumph over adversity.”

The Lords Of Altamont
To Hell With Tomorrow The Lords Are Now!

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Here is The Lords first live album ever, not recorded from the stage, but recorded from the studio with every mic and preamp in the house peaking in the red. This isn’t another vague, distant-sounding live album with senseless stage banter that is doctored up in post production; instead, think Live At The BBC or Peel Sessions live recordings. The band carefully chose songs that shows who they are today, as well as where they have been for the last 23 years. Preproduction took a day, recording took a day, and then they were done. And now ladies and gentlemen, an album that captures the true feeling of a Lords live recording with a no-nonsense approach. Sorry, no stickers, no fake tattoos, and no autographs, just raw live rock ’n’ roll. The Lords are now!!”

100 gecs
10,000 gecs

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:100 gecs are Dylan Brady and Laura Les, and 10,000 gecs is their highly anticipated sophomore album and the followup to their breakout debut album 1,000 gecs. In just a few months following the release of that album, the band went from playing their first concert from inside the video game Minecraft to selling out shows across the country, proving that their rabid, rapidly multiplying fanbase doesn’t only exist in the far corners of the internet. After their world tour was postponed in the summer of 2020, Brady and Les kept rolling with the release of 1000 gecs and The Tree of Clues, a rework of the original album featuring collaborations from the likes of A. G. Cook, Fall Out Boy, Charli XCX and Rico Nasty, as well as crowd-sourced contributions by fans. Their subsequent international touring over the past two years has sent the unlikely wizard-cloaked pied pipers jumping from sold-out show to sold-out show, seemingly two steps ahead of the zeitgeist, not to mention having a blast while doing it.”

Quiz Show
Quiz Show

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “American indie-rock supergroup Quiz Show — featuring members of legendary alt-rock bands Shudder To Think, Guided By Voices and The Dambuilders — present their eponymous debut album. These are songs of protest, friendship and frustration. Tapping the energy of punk rock with its loud guitars and driving rhythms, the vocals strive to capture the emotional fervour of punky garage rock. Pushing boundaries with rhythm, arrangements, chord structures and vocals that expand from straight-ahead power to music, they weave together different influences, including classic rock, prog and alternative, to create complex and beautiful in unexpected ways. “This is our first album! Quiz Show has been making music since 2017 and put out most of the songs on this release as singles between 2017 and 2020. We are releasing them now after remixing and remastering all of the songs to freshen them up and so they can document the origin story of Quiz Show in a single package,” says singer-guitarist Chris Matthews.”

The Ruby Tuesdays
Food For Thought

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Blackburn alt-rock quartet The Ruby Tuesdays are about to release their debut EP Food For Thought, a blistering fever of gritty instrumentation and powerful vocal arrangements. This EP is the epitome of what makes rock music, a fusion of past and present influences to create an outstanding rock anthem. The title is a lyric from one of the EP’s tracks and reflects truly what the EP represents for the band. Each track is a different branch of the band’s core alternative-rock sound and tells of a journey of change throughout their lyrics. This really is the Tuesdays’ magnus opus and is certain to be what helps them break to a wider audience.”

Songs Of Surrender

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Songs Of Surrender is a collection of 40 seminal U2 songs from across the band’s catalogue, re-recorded and reimagined for 2023 in sessions spanning the last two years. Songs Of Surrender is curated and produced by The Edge and sees the band revisit some of the most celebrated songs of their 40+ year career, including With Or Without You, One, Beautiful Day, Sunday Bloody Sunday and Invisible, for a musical reimagining resulting in a completely new recording of each track, to include the arrangements and, in some cases, new lyrics. The Edge said of the project: “Music allows you to time travel, and we became curious to find out what it would be like to bring our early songs back with us to the present day and give them the benefit, or otherwise, of a 21st century reimagining. What started out as an experiment quickly developed into a personal obsession as so many of our songs yielded to a new interpretation. Intimacy replaced post-punk urgency. New tempos, new keys, and in some cases new chords and new lyrics arrived. A great song, it turns out is kind of indestructible.”