New music round-up (for w/e 29 April 2022)

Our selection of the best new music across a range of genres from the week ending 29 April 2022.

Emotional Eternal, the third studio album from Melody’s Echo Chamber, is a deeply human collection of songs full of prolonged moments of sonic transcendence – a record that clearly exhibits its maturity but still regards the world with a childlike wonder. Having swapped Paris for the clean air of the Alps, the woman behind MEC, Melody Prochet, hopes “the record has that uplifting quality. I made some big and impactful decisions and changes to my life. It took me to where it is peaceful, and I think the record reflects this.”


Born from ten-hour jam sessions in peeling Brighton bedsits, the technical parameters of a bootstrap recording process and the osmotic, multi-genre influence of internet music archives, quintet Ebi Soda have been steady-cultivating a unique sound amidst the exploding UK jazz scene. Honk If You’re Sad, their sophomore full-length album (after 2020’s Ugh), stays true to these foundations, while bringing more ambitious experimentation, technical mastery and a stellar lineup of guest players to the studio including Yazz Ahmed, Deji Ijishakin and Dan Gray.


Sofi Tukker have taken over the world with their intoxicating, glossy mixture of striking electro-pop with global influences that always takes dazzling and unexpected turns, leaving the listener on the edge of their seat if not lifting them off of it. Their new album Wet Tennis, the follow up to their twice Grammy nominated debut, is out now via Ultra/Sony Music. The album is a celebration of self-empowerment, owning your right to pleasure, and liberating yourself from outside constraints. The title itself is an acronym: When Everyone Tries to Evolve, Nothing Negative Is Safe. It’s about leaving behind lesser fears and vices in favour of pursuing joy. Whatever challenges the duo face throughout the album, it isn’t long before they return to defiant positivity; it’s a story of ecstasy undoing human error, of delight outdoing our inevitable fallibility.


Lola Kirke’s sophomore album Lady for Sale is out now. The album showcases Kirke’s country-twinged vocals alongside a brightly colored candy shop of glam-twang guitar riffs, department store TV commercial synth stylings, and swooping, lilting, unabashedly feminine background vocals. The album channels a high-spirited insouciance that feels invigorating and familiar, decidedly more easy-going and fun-loving than what we’ve come to expect from its genre (and the world in general) in recent years.


Part Jimi Hendrix, part James Brown and all New Orleans, Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews is the bandleader and frontman of Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue, a hard-edged funk band that employs brass-band beats, rock dynamics and improvisation in a jazz tradition. NPR hailed him as “New Orleans’ brightest new star in a generation,” and New York Magazine wrote that “Trombone Shorty takes in a century-plus worth of sounds—ragtime and jazz and gospel and soul and R&B and hip-hop—and attacks everything he plays with festive fervor.” His new album, Lifted, is the follow-up to his acclaimed Parking Lot Symphony (2017).


Stravinsky sent shock-waves through classical music in the 20th century. His first three ballets—The Firebird, Petrushka and The Rite of Spring, all composed between 1909 and 1913—brought a new and frenzied sense of rhythm, so distressing to audiences that it caused uproar; The Rite of Spring even caused a riot. And it’s not hard to see why. Is there any moment in music more demonic than the opening to The Firebird, a terrifying rumble of strings that would make Jaws tremble? There are few pieces more unsettling than The Rite of Spring with its carnal, tribal rhythms; or Petrushka with its impish Punch and Judy puppets. A notable voice of authority on the works of Stravinsky, Sir Simon Rattle masterfully brings these three creations to life in this dramatic performance, recorded live in the Barbican Hall as part of his inaugural season as London Symphony Orchestra’s Music Director.


In 2018, Billboard proclaimed Frontperson, the musical collaboration between Kathryn Calder (vocalist and keyboardist for The New Pornographers) and Mark Andrew Hamilton (AKA Woodpigeon) to be “Musical love at first sight.” Now after a short pandemic-pause, the duo is pleased to announce their sophomore album Parade will be released on April 29, 2022 digitally and on limited edition CD and LP via Oscar St. Records. The songs of Parade pick up the pace, turn up the volume and expand the duo’s palette of sounds across an album full of surprising twists and expertly executed range.


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