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Next Week in Music | July 8-14 • The Not-Exactly Short List: 21 Titles You Want to Hear

What the hell? It's summer! Aren't all you people supposed to be on vacation?

I was awakened the other day by an urgent message from the music gods: ‘Break’s over, dumbass,’ they said. ‘Get back to work. We’ve got new albums from Eminem, Phish, Sturgill Simpson, Travis and plenty more coming out, and they ain’t gonna listen to themselves.’ To which I foolishly replied: ‘What the hell? It’s summer! Aren’t all you people supposed to be on vacation?’ What happened after that? Well, to quote Warren Zevon, I don’t wanna talk about it. So let’s just cut to the chase: Here are the 21 new studio albums, box sets and live releases you need to hear next week… if you know what’s good for you:


Marc Almond
I’m Not Anyone

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Alongside his status as one of the best songwriters of his generation, both in his solo career and as a member of the hugely influential Soft Cell, Marc Almond has built a reputation for being one of music’s greatest exponents of the art of the cover version. Always adept at taking a song and making it his own, Marc’s cover versions represent some of the landmarks in modern pop music — from Tainted Love to The Days Of Pearly Spencer. For I’m Not Anyone, Marc has done it again, with a deeply impressive suite of impeccably chosen interpretations of gems from the likes of Don McLean, King Crimson, Paul Anka, Colin Blunstone and Mahalia Jackson. Brought together here, the 11-strong song cycle makes for a unified, soulful experience, with a deep emotional resonance.”

Louis Armstrong
Louis In London

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Louis In London captures the last great performance by the most influential American musician of all time, Louis Armstrong. Recorded live at the BBC on July 2, 1968 — just weeks after the groundbreaking Grammy-winning artist hit the No. 1 spot on the U.K. charts with What A Wonderful World — the 13-track collection presents Armstrong delivering everything from the first composition he’s known to have played in public (W.C. Handy’s Ole Miss) to classic versions of such worldwide hits as Mack The Knife and Hello, Dolly! From the moment Armstrong received a copy of the 1968 London recording, he became determined for the world to hear this music, affixing a note to the outside of the tape box on which he wrote, “For The Fans.” Armstrong sent copies of the concert to friends and played them whenever he received visitors. Though he could have chosen any number of remarkable recordings, including his iconic collaborations with Ella Fitzgerald, he instead returned again and again to the BBC session from the summer of 1968. Now, more than five decades since his passing, Louis In London will at long last be officially shared with the world.”

Boy Golden
For Eden

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “In For Eden, Boy Golden searches for the best of all possible worlds. Utopic and wistful, this journey is a continuation of his “follow your art” proselytizing that began with his Church of Better Daze debut. A counterpoint to 2023’s For Jimmy, For Eden is largely a work of solitude; captured on an SM57 in a cabin in the woods. Recorded entirely to cassette, the album’s origins — analog and off the grid — speak to the more personal, self-reflective mood of the collection. While Boy Golden’s favourite mountain road makes a cameo, the album’s country waltzes, banjo and mandolin-laced acoustics glow softly under the light of a pink moon. From the gentle yet justified bravado of Burn, a sweetly boastful tune about his band’s excellence, to the tenor guitar pluck of Three Scenes, For Eden is the next chapter in Boy Golden’s journey. With cuts like The Way, a folk song set in Amsterdam, the muted layers of Never Have 2 Leave a la Stranger in the Alps, and the starry-sky stillness of Your Love (Where It’s At), Boy Golden continues his chill roll.”

Color Green
Fool’s Parade

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “For California quartet Color Green, playing music together is all about stepping into the unknown. “When we play live, I don’t really know what’s going to happen,” says Noah Kohll, one of the band’s two guitarists and four vocalists. “You really have no idea what you’re going to get with this band, which keeps things fresh for us and maybe makes the live experience special.” In a very short time, they have developed a word-of-mouth reputation as a dynamic and unpredictable live act, grounding their cosmic jams in earthy melodies and drawing from ’60s SoCal folk-rock, ’70s classic rock, ’80s underground rock, ’90s psychedelic dance-rock, and any other sound that catches their ears. They capture that wild, mercurial quality on Fool’s Parade, a meditation on loss, grief, confusion, frustration, and the clarity to which they all lead. The album has the dynamic of a tight live set, full of ebbs and flows, highs and lows, quiet moments and reckless jams. “We shaped it to showcase our range,” says guitarist Corey Madden. “All the songs were written together as a band. It’s the four of us in a room, and it features all of our voices. It’s one step toward what this band truly is. We spent a lot of time getting our shit together as a band, and now it’s set in stone for me.”

The Dip
Love Direction

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:The Dip are a Seattle R&B band known for poignant songwriting, detailed arrangements and vintage sound. Featuring a three-piece horn section, the group’s music harkens back to earlier soul and funk influences while hinting at the jazz foundations that brought the band’s members together. Love Direction, the followup to 2022’s Sticking With It (which landed at No. 1 on the Billboard Current R&B Albums Chart) is the band’s fourth full-length studio album. Despite the title, this latest record isn’t a collection of straightforward love songs, but an investigation into the different angles and challenges that relationships can bring. Expanding on the album’s theme, singer-guitarist Tom Eddy notes “These aren’t ‘Love Songs’ in the most obvious sense. They deal with the middle stages, the hinterlands of love and life together – figuring someone out and what they need, learning how to communicate, and examining your own faults. We set out to write music that felt more grown, a little wiser. The songs that emerged all pointed in the Love Direction.”

Steve Earle
Alone Again… Live

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Alone Again (Live) is the new solo live album from beloved American singer-songwriter Steve Earle. The 15-song record will feature live recordings from Earle’s recent 2023 tour, including his classic hits Copperhead Road, The Galway Girl, Guitar Town and more. Recalls Steve: “October before last I woke up without a band. I had toured with one version of The Dukes or another since 1982, but the real continuous bloodline of the outfit died with my longtime bass player, Kelly Looney, in 2019. So it seemed I’d come to a crossroads. Left? Right? I chose BACK. Back to performing solo like I did in coffeehouses when I first started.” Earle is one of the most acclaimed singer-songwriters of his generation. A protege of legendary songwriters Townes Van Zandt and Guy Clark, he quickly became a master storyteller in his own right, with his songs being recorded by Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings, Joan Baez, Emmylou Harris, The Pretenders and countless others. 1986 saw the release of his debut Guitar Town, which shot to No. 1 on the country charts and is now regarded as a classic of the Americana genre. Most recently, his 1988 hit Copperhead Road was made an official state song of Tennessee in 2023. His last album Jerry Jeff (2022) consisted of songs written by Jerry Jeff Walker, one of his mentors.”

The Death of Slim Shady (Coup de Grâce)

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “A product of Detroit who began his career there as a rogue splinter in the flourishing underground rap scene of the mid to late 1990s, Shady first became a household name in 1999 with the debut of his playfully deranged single My Name Is, which — along with its uniquely eye catching video — exposed the young artist and his lyrics to a wider audience. That audience was soon exposed to the extreme darkness of the muse/rapper as he led millions of music fans down a road that glorified a demonstrably nihilistic worldview. Ultimately, the very things that seemed to be the tools he used became calling cards that defined an existence that could only come to a sudden and horrific end. His complex and tortured existence has come to a close and the legacy he leaves behind is no closer to resolution than the manner in which this character departed the world. May he truly find the peace in an afterlife that he could not find on Earth.”

Joe Grushecky And The Houserockers
Can’t Outrun A Memory

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Joe Grushecky grew up in a Pennsylvania coal-mining town, but after seeing The Beatles on The Ed Sullivan Show, he soon had a guitar in hand and a future in rock ahead. Special Education educator by day, his Iron City Houserockers were signed by Cleveland International (home of Meat Loaf, Jim Steinman, Ronnie Spector, Ian Hunter). The Houserockers’ journey continued across labels with contributions from Hunter, Mick Ronson, Steve Van Zandt and Bruce Springsteen. Now, Joe and co. deliver their first release of new material in seven years. Can’t Outrun A Memory features 13 Grushecky originals coupled with a blistering cover of The Animals classic We Gotta Get Out Of This Place. The final tally: 17 tracks of pure rock ’n’ roll, performed by the hardest-working man and band in Pittsburgh.”

Johnny Blue Skies (Sturgill Simpson)
Passage Du Desir

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “After promising to release only five studio albums under his own name, Sturgill Simpson proves he’s a man of his word — and marks the beginning of a new era as Johnny Blue Skies with the release of Passage Du Desir. Out on his own independent label, High Top Mountain Records, the album includes eight songs produced by Johnny Blue Skies and David Ferguson, recorded at Clement House Recording Studio in Nashville and Abbey Road Studios in London.”

John Lennon
Mind Games: The Ultimate Collection

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Anchored by the buoyant peace-and-love anthem, Mind Games, John Lennon’s fourth album of the same name was surprisingly written and recorded during an incredibly tumultuous time in the rock legend’s life. In 1973, at age 33, John found himself in personal and political upheaval. A years-long deportation battle with U.S. immigration continued to rage on while his high-profile anti-Nixon campaigning, anti-Vietnam war activism, as well as the overtly political messages on his polarizing 1972 album, Sometime In New York City, made him a target of President Richard Nixon, leading to surveillance by the FBI. This was the dramatic backdrop as John entered N.Y.C.’s Record Plant in August ’73 with a select band of world-class session musicians (jokingly named The Plastic U.F.Ono Band) — drummer Jim Keltner, guitarist David Spinozza, pianist Ken Ascher, bassist Gordon Edwards, pedal-steel player “Sneaky” Pete Kleinow, saxophonist Michael Brecker, drummer Rick Marotta, backing vocalists Jocelyn Brown, Christine Wiltshire, Angel Coakely and Kathy Mull — to make his fourth post-Beatles solo album in just three years. John would channel this period of extraordinary activity to make a deeply personal and engrossing album of self-reflection that explored themes of love, heartbreak, peace, spirituality and social injustice, giving us yet another window into his life and soul, and some of his best solo songs, on Mind Games. The John Lennon Estate will celebrate this pivotal and intensely personal 1973 album with a suite of completely newly remixed and expanded Ultimate Collection editions, offering an immersive, deep listening experience and in-depth exploration of this classic, yet underappreciated record.”

Van Morrison
Live At Orangefield: Be Just And Fear Not

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Christmas of 1959 saw Van Morrison take to the stage of Orangefield Secondary School for his first live performance. Midnight Special, a skiffle group, consisted of fellow pupils— John McCullough on tea-chest bass, Cyril Downey and Billy Ruth on guitars, Walter Blakely on washboard and Van on guitar and vocals. In August 2014, Van Morrison returned to Orangefield Secondary School to perform three shows in a fond farewell to his alma mater as it prepared to close its doors for the final time. Live at Orangefield is a specially curated album, recorded live at this event.

Tailem Bend

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “It wasn’t meant to be six years between albums for O.R.B. The Geelong trio last graced us with a studio offering in the form of 2018’s characteristically heady The Space Between, before touring Europe and America back-to-back supporting King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard in 2019. But time rarely passes as expected, whether slowed by pandemics, side pursuits or other vagaries of daily life. What’s important is that a fourth album is finally here, with enough byways and trapdoors to keep us well occupied indeed. This isn’t the exact same ORB that we knew from past glories, however. There are still the inevitable avalanches of fuzz, but also present now are mellower passages and a renewed focus on rhythm and space. It’s not a wholesale departure, but it’s distinctive enough to be reflected in the album title itself.”

Orquesta Akokán

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Caracoles ushers Grammy-nominated Orquesta Akokán’s unique brand of mambo into the 21st century, imbuing it with the group’s signature sense of akokán — a Cuban Yoruba word meaning “from the heart.” Back at the helm are producer and multi-instrumentalist Jacob Plasse and virtuosic pianist, composer and arranger Michael Eckroth — a collaboration that continues to lead Orquesta’s exploration of the sublime mambo in all its depth and breadth. On this, their third album, they combine talents with Cuban lyricist, singer and composer Kiko Ruiz, who has toured and recorded with Pancho Amat’s illustrious Estrellas del Buena Vista Social Club as well as having a longstanding history as a singer, composer and arranger with Orquesta Maria Alejandra y Cubanía. While some songs are everyday Cuban life story-telling, Ruiz, a tata —priest— informs his lyrics with a Palo Mayombe spirituality propelling the mambo back to its original meaning. Despite being popularized world-wide as a festive, light-spirited, danceable genre, mambo is not to be taken lightly in the Palo Mayombe religion. Mambo is both a song and a prayer, beseeching good spirits to guide one’s journey away from darkness.”

Bones Owens
Love Out Of Lemons

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “On sophomore album Love Out Of Lemons, Bones Owens continues to evolve his cultured rock songwriting while capturing the energy of his renowned live shows. Love Out Of Lemons collects deeply grooving snapshots of carefree times and top-down drives with subtleties that linger long after the party’s over. “This record sort of picks up where my debut full-length left off,” offered Owens from yet another hotel room on yet another tour. “Energetic rock very typical of my live show.” Like Eighteen Wheeler, Love Out of Lemons was produced by Paul Moak at his Smoakstack studio in Nashville. But while the EP was something of an introspective departure for Owens, Love Out of Lemons is a blithe dive into his eclectic, nuanced rock and alt-roots sensibilities, from the genre-fluid grooves of heyday War to the lean bluesy influence of Creedence Clearwater Revival. Explains Owens: “I wanted to do another record that was largely rock, but also for it to have more than one gear.”


THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Evolve was recorded in the fall of 2023 at Phish’s Vermont recording studio The Barn, and was produced by Vance Powell and Bryce Goggin. True to Phish’s unique creative process, the album’s songs (including the already released Evolve and Oblivion) were selected from arrangements shaped by the band’s dynamic live performances. Some, like the fan-favorite A Wave Of Hope, have become springboards for Phish’s most soaring improvisation. Throughout, the songcraft and production are confident and taut, with Phish’s distinct musical language on vivid display; still pushing boundaries, still very much continuing to evolve. The cover of the album and gatefold feature paintings by Mehdi Ghadyanloo. The track The Well is only available on the vinyl version of the album.”

Sissy Spacek

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “At the intersection of the two extreme genres of noise and grindcore, Sissy Spacek have been an ongoing artistic process to create anxiety-inducing chaotic music. The band return to basics with the core lineup of John Wiese and Charlie Mumma (who you may know from Bloody Phoenix or Knelt Rote). Diaphanous is a vortex of blast beats, noise electronics, and ardent screaming. If you’ve heard the group’s 2016 album Disfathom, or 2018’s Ways of Confusion, you can consider this its spiritual successor. For fans of chaos, noise, and blast beats. After contributing to the underground for almost a quarter of a century, this is considered the band’s third grindcore full length and it is not to be missed.”

Son of Dave
A Flat City

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:A Flat City is one-man blues cyclone Son of Dave’s 11th studio release. It comes on SoD‘s own Goddamn Records. His fans will recognize the unique rockin style made famous by Shake A Bone and other one-man-band tracks. Electric harmonica, beat-box, percussion and barking vocals sound rootsy and authentic, but still totally unique. Playing harmonica, layering up beatbox grooves, stomping and playing percussion, then writing passionate growling infectious songs overtop, Son of Dave defies category. A truly maverick Bluesman. Originating from Winnipeg, he was based out of London U.K. for more than 25 years. He’s toured all over Europe, North America and further to Uganda, South Africa, Lebanon, Russia and more. His one-man show is fun, funky and unforgettable. Many have found Son of Dave through his songs in Breaking Bad, Preacher, Bloodline and many other TV and film syncs. At a magic 56 years old, there’s no sign of slowing down. Though bad knees and dizzy spells are to be expected sometimes.”

Billy Strings
Live Vol. 1

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Grammy-winning singer, songwriter and musician Billy Strings will release his first live album — fittingly titled Billy Strings Live Vol. 1 — on Reprise Records. Live Vol. 1 consists of eight tracks recorded between June of 2023 and March of 2024. The collection features a mix of old tunes (Dust In A Baggie, Turmoil & Tinfoil), more recent fare (Heartbeat of America, Fire Line) and one of Strings’ newest songs (Richard Petty). Raised in Michigan and now based in Nashville, Strings is known as one of music’s most compelling artists. Most recently, he released Meet Me At The Creek > Pyramid Country > Must Be Seven > Meet Me At The Creek (Live at Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Winston-Salem, NC 3/4/23), a 38-minute live performance that showcases the energy of Strings’ electric concerts. The track follows California Sober, his Grammy-nominated collaboration with legendary artist Willie Nelson, as well as his most recent album Me/And/Dad, which features Strings alongside his father, Terry Barber, and was nominated for Best Bluegrass Album at this year’s Grammy Awards.”

Thirteen Goats
Capricorn Rising

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Capricorn Rising is the upcoming concept album and extreme metal rock opera from Thirteen Goats, which will be released for metalheads around the world. Is it thrash? Death? Groove? Thirteen Goats don’t care, and neither should you. This Vancouver four-piece tramples all over subgenre conventions to create an alchemical style of infernal riffs, huge hooks, and uniquely theatrical songwriting. It’s been two years since the release of their debut Servants Of The Outer Dark, and the band have worked their asses off to bring everything fans loved about that record back with a vengeance — the frenzied fretwork, the humongous hooks, and the subtly humorous lyrics that mask much darker and more serious subjects. Two songsalso feature guest vocals by Carly Ellen Jones. Thirteen Goats are recommended for fans of Carcass, Lamb of God and Mastodon.”

L.A. Times

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:L.A. Times is our most personal album since The Man Who,” says Travis frontman Fran Healy. “There was a lot of big stuff to write about back then, the tectonic plates had shifted in my life. I was 22 when I was writing those songs. They were my therapy. Over 20 years later and the plates have shifted again. There’s a lot to talk about.” Produced by Tony Hoffer (Air, Beck, Phoenix), L.A. Times was written by Healy in his studio on the edge of Skid Row, Los Angeles, the city he has called home for the last decade. Its 10 songs see their creator, inevitably, trying to make sense of the road travelled to this point — a sentiment reflected in the stunning album cover photograph. Echoing some of Travis’s most beloved records, we’re greeted anew by four distant figures amongst vast surroundings, this time beneath the concrete and glitter of downtown Los Angeles at night. An unbroken lineup since their formation at the Glasgow School of Art in the 1990s, the coordinates of their extraordinary journey together are marked by this latest in a series of arresting images by world-renowned photographer and Travis collaborator for over 20 years, Stefan Ruiz.”

Van Halen
For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge Expanded Edition

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Van Halen’s ninth studio album, For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge, debuted at No. 1 and stayed there for three weeks during the summer of 1991. It was the third consecutive No. 1 album from singer Sammy Hagar, guitarist Eddie Van Halen, drummer Alex Van Halen and bassist Michael Anthony. It earned Van Halen their first Grammy for Best Heavy Metal/Hard Rock Album. The Expanded Edition of the album arriving this summer includes a newly remastered version of the original, along with previously unreleased alternate versions of Right Now and The Dream Is Over and audio / video footage from Van Halen’s Dece. 4, 1991, concert in Dallas. Captured during the For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge Tour, this electrifying show is a powerful example of Van Halen’s unparalleled stage presence. The setlist mixes new songs (Judgement Day and Poundcake) with songs from 5150 and OU812 (Best Of Both Worlds and Finish What Ya Started). The band also played Panama, a hit from their time with singer David Lee Roth, plus two of Hagar’s hits, I Can’t Drive 55 and There’s Only One Way To Rock.”