Our selection of the best new music across a range of genres from the week ending 8 April 2022.
Written mostly with longtime co-conspirator klipschutz, The Land That Time Forgot steps out of Chuck Prophet’s comfort zone (“two guitars, bass, and drums”). The album got off the ground in the Money Belt, only to find its legs in the Borscht Belt. Musically it has deep roots, from the Southern Delta to the discos of Munich. There’s a kind of folkish inevitability to it, lots of acoustic instruments, on top of the each other and side by side. But as much as folk music is the soil all music grows from, it never hurts to have a boiler room. So, there’s always a rhythm section shuffling under your feet here.
Nowadays, voice memos, videos, and pictures chronicle our lives in real-time. We trace where we’ve been and reveal where we’re going. However, Suki Waterhouse catalogues the most intimate, formative, and significant moments of her life through songs. You might recognize her name or her work as singer, songwriter, actress but you’ll really get to know the multi-faceted artist through her music. Memories of unrequited love, fits of longing, instances of anxiety, and unfiltered snapshots interlock like puzzle pieces into a mosaic of well-worn country, nineties-style alternative, and unassuming pop. She writes the kind of tunes meant to be grafted onto dusty old vinyl from your favorite vintage record store, yet perfect for a sun-soaked festival stage. These compositions comprise her debut album, I Can’t Let Go [Sub Pop Records].
Six-time GRAMMY nominated artist Gerald Clayton returns with Bells On Sand, his ravishing second album for Blue Note Records. Recorded at Sam First in Los Angeles and Santa Barbara Sound Design, the album features ten tracks of fresh orchestration and original music with contributions from mentor Charles Lloyd on saxophone, father John Clayton on bass, longtime friend and peer Justin Brown on drums, and new collaborator MARO on vocals. Together, they explore the impact and abstraction of time.
TOO is both HVOB’s harshest and softest album to date. In terms of sound, Anna Müller and Paul Wallner explore a space of extremes between departure and retreat, between determination and self-doubt. TOO is dedicated to the state of mind of a generation in search of inner and outer belonging: the album captures a life in the dichotomy of one’s own and other people’s expectations, in the feeling of not living up to these expectations, in renewed attempts to free oneself from these expectations.
Documenting more than a hundred years of Italian operatic music in France, Benjamin Bernheim’s new album Boulevard des Italiens is out now on Deutsche Grammophon. Music stretching from Spontini’s La Vestale to Mascagni’s Amica – all sung in French – receives gold-star treatment from Bernheim, a tenor ideally placed to sing this repertoire in his native language. As he explains, “The aim was really to show the history of the French language in opera houses in Paris by way of these Italian composers who brought their pieces there. With the Opéra Garnier at one end, and the Opéra-Comique at the other, the Boulevard des Italiens is where it all happened.”
“I’ve been playing since I was 11 years old,” says Charlie Gabriel, the most senior member of the legendary Preservation Hall Band, “I never did anything in my life but play music. I’ve been blessed with that gift that God gave me, and I’ve tried to nurse it the best way I knew how.” His new album Eighty Nine includes six standards and three newer pieces on which Gabriel is a writer: “Yellow Moon,” “The Darker It Gets” and “I Get Jealous.” The record also marks Charlie’s return to his first instrument, clarinet, on many of the tracks. “The clarinet is the mother of the saxophone,” he says. “I started playing clarinet early in life, and this [taught me] the saxophone.”
Perth-based singer-songwriter Carla Geneve has released her debut album Learn To Like It, via Dot Dash Recordings / Remote Control Records. Featuring singles including ‘Dog Eared’, ‘Don’t Wanna Be Your Lover’ and ‘The Right Reasons’, Learn To Like It serves as a reflective statement of an artist finally coming into her own whilst simultaneously navigating the trials and tribulations of self-discovery and personal growth. From humble beginnings in the small south-west town of Albany to a rapid ascent wrapped up in two years of prolific touring, accolades and international acclaim – a period that was also accompanied by the chaos of adolescence and heartache – Learn To Like It is an emotional catharsis of forging identity through hardship and the light at the end of the tunnel rewarded by hopeless optimism.
Other reviews you might enjoy:
- New music round-up (for w/e 16 April 2021)
- New music round-up (for w/e 4 March 2022)
- For the First Time (Black Country, New Road) – music review
David Edwards is the editor of The Blurb and a contributor on film and television