Drake’s Take: New Releases 09.22.09

A bunch of these Drake’s Takes kind of got away from me, so for the sake of completeness, I’ve been going in and doing a little bit of housekeeping. (That’s right, you’re eyes aren’t playing tricks on you, this post just appeared on September 22 more or less by “blog magic”.) -ed.

The advent of fall brings us some ripe apples in the new release department, and this week sees the much anticipated reunion of The Traveling Wilburys Monsters of Folk, featuring Conor Oberst, Jim James & M. Ward, but we covered that the other day. The other noteworthy releases this week include new ones from Volcano Choir, Islands, Times New Viking, The Twilight Sad, Amy Millan, Pearl Jam, Castanets, Vic Chesnutt, Sea Wolf, Brother Ali, Noisettes, Basement Jaxx, The Pastels, Hallelujah the Hills, Richard Hawley, Le Loup, The Big Pink and the Roller Coaster Project, along with some reissues from Beastie Boys, Elvis Costello and Ween.

Playlist: New Releases 09.22.09

Volcano Choir – Unmap
Stream / Purchase [mp3]

Volcano Choir - UnmapJustin Vernon’s brief aside from Bon Iver has produced this esoteric collection of atmospheric songs with him backed by the experimental Collections of Colonies of Bees. The album is far less accessible than fans of For Emma, Forever Ago would likely expect, but upon repeated listens, finds itself grooved into the synapse firings of your brain. The enchantment of “Island, Is” especially is hard to escape, with Vernon’s vocals dreamily floating along to the closest thing to pop that the album has to offer. (Is it wrong that I find myself eagerly awaiting its inclusion in a future episode of Chuck?) The rest of the album has many fine moments coupled with a few passages that kind of just pass through, easily forgotten. All told, it’s a project that deserves a follow-up release, to be sure.

Free AOL Album Stream
“Island, IS” [mp3]

Islands – Vapours
Stream / Purchase [mp3]

Islands - VapoursFor those that found Islands’ sophomore release Arm’s Way a bit too prog-y, I’ve got good news for you. Vapours is a return to the kitchen sink-pop that Nick Thorburn joyously captured on their debut, Return to the Sea. Vapours is a bit all over the map, though – including a couple tracks (“Shining” and “The Drums”) that slip into Arm’s Way-like trappings, but the songs always find their way to sounding like the quirky pop-driven Islands you’ve come to know and love. Highlights include the title track, the soulful (and auto-tune utilized) “Heartbeat,” and the bright pop of “Tender Torture.”

Free AOL Album Stream

More on the radar (and in the mp3 player) this week:
Monsters of Folk – Monsters of Folk
Girls – Album
Times New Viking – Born Again Revisited / Free AOL Album Stream / “Move to California” [mp3]
Pearl Jam – Backspacer (AOL Album Stream)
Brother Ali – Us / Free AOL Album Stream / “Us” [mp3]
Castanets – Texas Rose, The Thaw, And The Beasts /
“Worn from the Fight” [mp3]
Noisettes – Great Escape
Sea Wolf – White Water, White Bloom
LCD Soundsystem – 45:33 The Remixes
Amy Millan – Masters of the Burial / Free AOL Album Stream
The Twilight Sad – Forget the Night Ahead
Hallelujah the Hills – Colonial Drones / “Classic Tapes” [mp3] / “Blank Passports” [mp3]
Le Loup – Family / Free AOL Album Stream / “Beach Town” [mp3]
Basement Jaxx – Scars
The Big Pink – A Brief History of Love
The Rollercoaster Project – Revenge
Spiral Beach – The Only Really Thing / “Domino” [mp3]
One eskimO – One eskimO / Free AOL Album Stream
Rufus Wainwright – Milwaukee at Last!!
Deadmau5 – For Lack of a Better Name / Free AOL Album Stream
One eskimO – One eskimO / Free AOL Album Stream
Mika – The Boy Who Knew Too Much
Owen – New Leaves / “Good Friends, Bad Habits” [mp3]
The Pastels/Tenniscoats – Two Suns
Vic Chesnutt – At the Cut / Free AOL Album Stream / “Philip Guston” [mp3]
Why? – Eskimo Snow
Sissy Wish – Beauties Never Die

Beastie Boys – Hello Nasty (Remastered Edition)