Our selection of the best new music across a range of genres from the week ending 3 December 2021.
Modern Nature have dropped their new album, Island of Noise, out now via Bella Union. The album is released only as a deluxe double vinyl box set with a second companion LP titled Island of Silence: a beautiful instrumental re-imagining of the record. The album has been released – using only sustainable material – on 180g vinyl complete with a lavish booklet featuring the work of ten other artists, including Booker-nominated poet Robin Robertson, mycologist Merlin Sheldrake, illustrator Sophy Hollington, musician Eugene Chadbourne and writer Richard King, that reinterpret, deconstruct or take inspiration from the ten tracks on the record.
Juçara Marçal is a Brazilian singer and a member of the group Metá Metá. Her fist solo album Encarnado was released in 2014 and was named the best album of 2014 by APCA (Paulista Association of Art Critics). Her second solo album, Delta Estácio Blues, is out now. The album features some of Brazil’s finest musicians including Cadu Tenório, Romulo Alexis, Paulinho Bicolor and Thais Nicodemo.
Christian McBride & Inside Straight Live at the Village Vanguard is Christian McBride’s twelfth release with Mack Avenue Music Group. This recording can be thought of as a companion to the Grammy-winning Christian McBride Trio Live at the Village Vanguard album released in 2015. Inside Straight is the quintet that inaugurated McBride’s collaboration with Mack Avenue Records (releasing Kind of Brown in 2009). Both live recordings of the bassist leading these two ensembles occurred in a consecutive two-week period in December of 2014 – a rare engagement offered to only the most venerated jazz artists by the most venerated jazz club in America.
Kalaji is the self-titled debut album by Nyikina sound artist and electronic musician Mark Coles Smith. Produced on Country in the North of Western Australia, the work is an astonishing combination of remote field recordings, multi-instrumentation and cutting-edge sound design, all brought together into a sonic exploration of country, culture and consciousness in the age of technology. The resulting soundtrack is one of meticulous detail and depth, with all of its focus on delivering the listener across a sonic dreamscape that is as hypnotic as it is haunting.
US-based Australian artist Kelly Dance has revealed her long awaited album The Yips, a hypnotic and alluring set of avant-folk songs that reside in a sonic dream-state where poetry and musicality co-exist in perfect harmony. The Yips was recorded in New York with Whyte and Kindred during the latter part of 2016 and early 2017 before being mastered by Bob Weston at the end of that year. Other special guests from Whyte’s musical circle include Steve Marion (Delicate Steve), American soul singer Martha Redbone, John Chao from the band Misha, and double bass player Joanna Sternberg. From across the world, Australian contributions came from Aidan Roberts from the Maple Trail, Dance’s husband Johnny Dance (Dance et al) and the cellist Gus Gardiner.
Volbeat have released their eighth studio album, Servant of the Mind. For this record, the band took their signature heavy metal, psychobilly and punk ‘n’ roll sound up a notch while showcasing Michael Poulsen’s keen ability for songwriting and storytelling. The album includes the “double barrel” of Summer songs the band released this past June: “Wait A Minute My Girl” and “Dagen Før (feat. Stine Bramsen).” The former of which became the band’s ninth number one single on the Billboard Mainstream Rock chart.
Challenging conventions and pushing boundaries, Emily D’Angelo is a new musical force to be reckoned with. We are delighted to announce the signing of an exclusive agreement with the 26-year-old Italian-Canadian mezzo-soprano, an artist already in high demand at the world’s leading opera houses and concert venues. Just last week she made a highly acclaimed role and house debut as Sesto in La clemenza di Tito at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, in a new production directed by Richard Jones and conducted by Mark Wigglesworth. Her debut album enargeia includes original pieces by Mazzoli and Snider, as well as two stunning vocal works by the Oscar-winning Hildur Guðnadóttir.
Other reviews you might enjoy:
- New music round-up (for w/e 10 December 2021)
- New music round-up (for w/e 18 March 2022)
- New music round-up (for w/e 3 September 2021)
David Edwards is the editor of The Blurb and a contributor on film and television