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Next Week in Music | April 8-14 • The Short List: 13 Titles You Want to Hear

These releases are the musical equivalent of an MGB. Or maybe a free ad for BMG.

Mark Knopfler, Meshell Ndegeocello and Metz. Girl In Red and Gospel Beach. Blue Öyster Cult, Bend Sinister, Buzzard Buzzard Buzzard, Bodega and Elliott BROOD. Put ’em all together and you’ve got the musical equivalent of an MGB. Or free advertising for BMG. But hopefully not a case of GBM. Here’s the rundown — don’t make me spell it out for you:


Nia Archives
Silence Is Loud

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Nia Archives is the star at the forefront of the latest era of jungle. Since her emergence in 2020, her collagist soundscapes have helped bring the sound to a new generation of clubgoers (though fair warning: don’t call her a “revivalist” — she’s the first to point out that the scene never went away). So when it comes to talk of the 24-year-old producer, DJ, singer and songwriter’s much-anticipated debut album, the odds are you’re thinking of a full-length record of weightless jungle tracks with basslines so intense they’ll leave your ears ringing. But the reality of the Bradford-born, Leeds-raised artist’s first album — while very much replete with that exquisite jungle sound she does so well — is also doing something a little different. On the thrilling and freeing Silence Is Loud, Nia Archives is looking to make music for beyond the rave. As she explains: “I think music can be experienced in different ways, and there’s different kinds of music for different scenarios. Say you’re at a festival listening to music with thousands of other people, that can feel really uniting. But then you might listen to an album on your own in the bus, or in a taxi; and this project is definitely more a record to sit and listen to than a collection of club tracks.”

Bend Sinister
Mostly Great Things

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “For over 20 years, Bend Sinister have committed to an indie-rock ethos and still show no signs of slowing. Forged in the spirit of defiant, highschool rock-n-roll idealism, the group came to life in 1999 when band leader Dan Moxon (vocals/keys) rallied some classmates to start writing and performing music influenced by math, indie, prog and alternative rock. Singing about love, life on the road, and dogs, it wouldn’t be odd to hear the tender longing of a Billy Joel piano ballad followed by the grimy, fuzzed-out riffing of Queens Of The Stone Age with the dramatic crescendo of a Mozart symphony culminating in a fist-pumping BTO lumber-rock singalong chorus. Older and possibly wiser, Vancouver-based Moxon and his longtime bandmates Joseph Martin (guitar), Matt Rhode (bass) and Nick Petrowich (drums) have been furiously writing and recording the band’s seventh album. Their attitude not so far removed from their school days, Bend Sinister maintain the burning tenacity required to press on as a working indie band.”

Blue Öyster Cult
Ghost Stories

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “After the resounding success of their 50th anniversary celebration, Blue Öyster Cult are eagerly gearing up for an exciting new chapter in their storied career with the upcoming release of Ghost Stories. This album marks a fitting finale to the recording legacy of one of rock’s most iconic fixtures from the past 50 years. Blue Öyster Cult are set to captivate fans with a collection of reimagined and newly completed songs that span from 1978-2016. These musical treasures, long considered ‘lost gems’ by fans, were originally recorded between 1978 and 1983, except for one track from 2016, If I Fell. Also included is the only known studio recording of their concert classic cover of The MC5’s Kick Out the Jams. Some of the material is from sessions workshopping material for an album, some is from performance rehearsals. All were recorded once in the hopes that someday they’d see the light of day. George Geranios, the band’s original audio engineer and an integral part of the band’s golden years, co-produced the original 1978-’83 recordings with BÖC. All were originally recorded on reel-to-reel analog tape. They were later transferred to digital audio, which is when modern AI and magical musical talents met and the collection of vintage multi-track recordings was demixed, remixed, and produced by Steve Schenck and Richie Castellano to become Ghost Stories.”

Our Brand Could Be Yr Life

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Sometimes you have to move backwards to move forwards. Just ask punk cultural commentators Bodega, whose new album sees them carve a new future from fuzzsoaked, consumerism-skewering shards of their past. “It’s something we’ve been wanting to do for years,” guitarist and vocalist Ben Hozie explains of Our Brand Could Be Yr Life — a collection of catchy indie-rock ruminations on the slow-creep of corporate-think into youth culture, first written eight years ago. Then known as Bodega Bay, the Brooklyn group recorded those songs as a paradoxical double album. Now, Bodega — completed by lead guitarist Dan Ryan, bassist Adam See and drummer Adam Shumski — have reinterpreted Our Brand Could Be Yr Life for 2024. Says Hozie: “We thought of it like a director remaking one of their old films, like when Hitchcock remade The Man Who Knew Too Much, or when Yasujirō Ozu re-did The Story of Floating Weeds.

Buzzard Buzzard Buzzard

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Cardiff’s Buzzard Buzzard Buzzard return with Skinwalker — a garage-rock romp and follow-up to their Welsh Music Prize-nominated debut album Backhand Deals. Taking raw rock ‘n’ roll cues from tracks frontman Thomas Rees produced for emerging talent — including Panic Shack, Do Nothing and The Bug Club — and teased by recently released singles Chew and Therapy, the record marks the band’s move towards a heavier and disquieting sound, inspired by Rees’ revitalised devotion to acts such as Ty Segall, Thee Oh Sees and Black Sabbath. The band — Rees, guitarist Zac White, drummer Ethan Hurst and Rees’ brother and bassist Eddie — have gone from strength to strength since releasing their debut EP The Non-Stop in 2020.”

Elliott BROOD

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Elliott BROOD officially usher in their Country era, with the second part of a two-album cycle that began with Town in late 2023. Playing on both the genre and its signpost sounds (twangy, electric guitars; sad but true lyrics tinged with humour, obligatory whiskey references) and the settings (the winding roads, a cozy abode, natural elements), Country deftly matches each of these touchstones with the other, creating a cross-border quilt full of stories that are both personal and from characters passing. “Doing it the hard way for 20 years,” is a badge Elliott BROOD wear with honour. Two decades on, work, life and love have taken the trio in many directions, away from their hometowns and headfirst into an ongoing musical journey through distance and time. Now, Elliott BROOD are never more at home than in the wash of distorted, evocative strings and stomps that make their signature alt-country sound.”

Girl In Red
I’m Doing It Again Baby!

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:I’m Doing It Again Baby! is the sophomore album from Norway born and Oslo-based singer-songwriter Girl In Red. This 10-song album chronicles the artist’s last two and a half years with honesty and wit, and a willingness to play around with her music. With I’m Doing It Again Baby!, Girl In Red is building her music into something “more ambitious, and more exciting, and more idea-driven.” Exploring themes like confidence, criticism, self-esteem, and vulnerability, Girl In Red produced the album with frequent collaborator Matias Tellez. Girl In Red, who spent much of 2023 opening for Taylor Swift on her Eras Tour as well as her own global festival run, can also be found in A24 Music’s forthcoming compilation Everyone’s Getting Involved: A Tribute to Talking Heads’ Stop Making Sense, which comes in celebration of the recent re-release of Jonathan Demme’s iconic concert film of the same name and the 40th anniversary of its accompanying soundtrack album.”

Wiggle Your Fingers

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “With the new album Wiggle Your Fingers, GospelbeacH are back with their ’70s Laurel Canyon sounds drifting down to Hollywood in the early ’80s — this time the Lonesome L.A. cowboy vibes reflect the neon lights of new wave, power pop, and post-punk. The group were formed in 2014 by Brent Rademaker, Tom Sanford and Neal Casal, all from the Beachwood Sparks camp. Over the years GospelbeacH have featured many harmonious friends, luminaries and guest stars over the years. The sound harks back to several eras of California sounds, folk-rock, sunshine pop country-rock and of course, the paisley underground.”

Mark Knopfler
One Deep River

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Mark Knopfler’s 10th solo studio album One Deep River, features 12 unhurriedly elegant new Knopfler songs, and his warm Geordie vocal tone, his poetic storytelling lyrics and deft, richly melodic guitar playing are all present and correct and as dazzling as ever. One Deep River offers an unstoppable flow of future Knopfler classics, with their customarily learned lyrics and refined guitar textures. They draw on a lifetime of genre-crossing ingredients and influences in blues, folk, rock and beyond, and as usual, reveal their charms with unhurried grace and depth. One Deep River was produced by Knopfler and his longstanding collaborator Guy Fletcher and was recorded at his state-of-the-art British Grove Studios in London. The band on features Knopfler on guitars, Jim Cox and Guy Fletcher on keyboards, Glenn Worf on bass, Ian Thomas on drums and Danny Cummings on percussion, Richard Bennett on guitar, and Greg Leisz on pedal and lap steel; Mike McGoldrick provides whistle and uilleann pipes, and John McCusker plays fiddle, while sisters Emma and Tamsin Topolski add backing vocals.”

Up On Gravity Hill

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “With time, we come to understand the way the joy of connection is mirrored by the void of loss, how the constancy of love is matched only by the impermanence of life, the simple idea that we could not create light if we did not risk the dark — we’d never need to. So it is with Metz, a band once known for blowing out eardrums with songs of joyous rage who have, over their past few records, begun exploring ways to turn abrasiveness into atmospherics, the evolution of their sound not only a reflection of the maturing of the band themselves but also of a changed world that demands nuance and compassion to comprehend and to survive. It was a journey already underway on 2020’s Atlas Vending, but one that reaches new heights on Up On Gravity Hill, where the Canadian trio create a kaleidoscopic sonic world as tender as it is dark, aided once again by engineer Seth Manchester (Mdou Moctar, Lingua Ignota, Battles, The Body). Deep, detailed, and unyieldingly personal, it is not only Metz’s most powerful record to date but also their most beautiful.”

Meshell Ndegeocello
Red Hot & Ra: The Magic City

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Red Hot + Ra: The Magic City is a profound musical journey curated by Grammy-winning bassist-composer-producer Meshell Ndegeocello. Recorded with a diverse ensemble, including the legendary 99-year-old saxophonist Marshall Allen and hip-hop/punk-jazz vocalist Pink Siifu, this album transcends traditional covers, offering entirely new compositions inspired by Sun Ra’s philosophy. With a multi-generational cast of community musicians, the project recontextualizes Sun Ra’s work, avoiding clichés and presenting a brighter perspective than its predecessor, 2023’s Red Hot + Ra: Nuclear War. Immerse yourself in the dreamlike and soulful interpretation of Sun Ra’s composition as The Magic City marks the third installment in the Red Hot & Ra series.”

Perceive Its Beauty, Acknowledge Its Grace

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “After putting down the saxophone, the instrument he has become synonymous with, Shabaka returns with his first full-length album under his own name. Expanding off the meditative 2022 EP Afrikan Culture, his new album Perceive Its Beauty, Acknowledge Its Grace is a deeply moving suite of primarily instrumental music. The listening experience is reflective and contemplative, with passages flowering from one musical concept to the next, encouraging deep attention that rewards the listener with throughlines and motifs throughout the record. Shabaka is found playing the flute on this album, and has enlisted key artists such as Andre 3000, Lianne La Havas, Moses Sumney, Floating Points and more to help build this all-encompassing aural landscape.”

Aaron Lee Tasjan
Stellar Evolution

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Shapeshifting singularity Aaron Lee Tasjan is about to release his landmark new album, Stellar Evolution. A celestial collection of sonically expansive anthems, connecting the far away universes of slacker indie rock, hyper-pop and new wave. Produced by Tasjan and Gregory Lattimer, the album showcases an innovative array of shimmering synth, club ready drums and angular guitar, and is undeniably his most realized sonic vision to date. Tasjan has cultivated a storied and outstanding career already, but Stellar Evolution is just what the title says. A culmination of his fluid artistic expression and his diverse accomplishments, while clearly heading in a brand-new and innovative musical direction. With his trademark sardonic lyrical wit, Tasjan shares poignant self observations and his personal reflections, in part inspired by the dark times the queer community has experienced in the South. Written in the context of bathroom and drag bans, which were enacted in Tennessee, while right-wing rhetoric around LGBTQI+ people became uglier and uglier. Tasjan knew this album needed to reflect both his personal experience and offer a safe space for the vibrant queer community that has become home to him.”