Our selection of the best new music across a range of genres from the week ending 17 November 2023.
ELO songs were always coming on the radio when Juliana Hatfield was growing up. They were a reliable source of pleasure and fascination (except for “Fire On High” which scared the heck out of her). With her album of covers, Juliana Hatfield Sings ELO, she wanted to get her hands deep into some of the massive ‘70’s hits but also shine a light on some of the later work (“Ordinary Dream” from 2001’s “Zoom” album, “Secret Messages” and “From The End Of The World”, both from the ‘80’s).
A NYC-native, pianist Ray Gallon has been a mainstay on the jazz scene for over three decades, with a resume that includes touring and recording with many legendary jazz masters. Rooted in bebop and blues, his expressive, swingin’ playing melds old and new into a fresh, original style. Ray’s new trio album Grand Company features the dream-team rhythm section of Maestro Ron Carter and Lewis Nash. Recorded at the iconic Van Gelder Studio, the album showcases a mix of Ray’s distinctive original compositions, as well as new arrangements of some classic standards.
The Sees have released their long awaited debut album, Conversations With My Future Self. Exploring the connective sense of global reflection, the nuances of time and the effects it has on us by always slipping away, the concept record tells its story through captivating rhythms and styles that push the boundaries of the rock genre while exploring fresh perspectives.
Culled from half a decade of home four-tracking, Remote Echoes is a hissy, crumbly, and ungrounded expression of Clay Parton and Canaan Amber’s ongoing Duster project. A mix of cassette only demos released under the banners Christmas Dust and On The Dodge, this 14 track album also includes a bevy of previously unissued stragglers. Duster’s unique blend of fuzzy guitars, bargain synths, muffled percussion, and hushed vocals anticipated chillwave, mumblecore, and corecore, elegantly illustrating the holy trinity of slacker vices: cigarettes, coffee, and the weed supreme.
Weinberg, the new album from Tassilo Probst, Wen-Sinn Yang, Daniel Grossman, and the Jewish Chamber Orchestra of Munich, provides the perfect introduction to this important 20th century composer. Weinberg worked with some of the big names of the USSR, David Oistrakh, Rudolf Barshai (the dedicatee of the 7th Symphony) to name just two. The Concertino for cello and strings is shot through with an emotional charge clearly associated with the harrowing experience of the murder in 1948 of his actor/director father-in-law by the KGB, an event that heralded the beginning of his own persecution by the authorities.
Wrabel has released his sophomore album ‘based on a true story’ – an inspired next chapter in the career of one of modern pop’s most prolific talents. The new LP is an amalgamation of the celebrated songwriter and artist’s previous two EPs ‘chapter of me’ and ‘chapter of you’, both of which unfolded throughout 2023 showcasing Wrabel’s never-endingly brilliant knack for nuanced storytelling, lyricism and inescapable earworms. On the LP, the aforementioned EPs are brought together by a batch of new tracks, including the lush most recent single “happier” and his own recording of “lost cause” (a Wrabel-penned highlight off of P!nk’s most recent album ‘Trustfall’.)
Rising ambient-pop act Hubcaps (the project of Gadigal land/Sydney multi-instrumentalist and producer Ella Mosley) has shared her debut album Singing & Songing, out now via Dinosaur City. Self-produced, written and recorded by Mosley, Singing & Songing is a compelling vision of bedroom pop. Rickety drums, sparkling synths and clean, electric guitar mingle with Hubcaps’ quietly loud melodies, pure and unguarded at once. The porous production immerses listeners into a space that feels both casual and uncomfortably close, Mosley’s vocals, soaked in reverb and looped to infinity, serving as an anchor across the record.
Other reviews you might enjoy:
- New music round-up (for w/e 23 June 2023)
- New music round-up (for w/e 19 May 2023)
- New music round-up (for w/e 21 July 2023)
David Edwards is the editor of The Blurb and a contributor on film and television