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The Big Takeover Issue #88
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Los Lobos

Los Lobos – Native Sons (New West Records)

30 July 2021

A Los Angeles institution crafts affectionate covers of hometown faves.

Robert Harrison - Watching the Kid Come Back (Monostereo)

30 July 2021

Rather than fill nooks and crannies with ear candy, Harrison lets the songs breathe, the air around each lick and vocal framing the tunes as much as backwards guitars and tape splices did in the Kontiki days.

Barista - Open Sesame Vol 2: Press Rewind (Monoplay Records)

29 July 2021

Rather than padded with filler, the immense album is proving to be made with meticulous care and attention.

J. Peter Schwalm/Markus Reuter - Aufbruch (RareNoise)

29 July 2021

A joint effort from two musicians equally comfortable with organic and synthetic sources of sound, Aufbruch feels like the perfect soundtrack for the Pandemic Years.

Michael Mantler - Coda - Orchestral Suites (ECM)

28 July 2021

For Coda – Orchestral Suites, the Austrian musician reworks pieces from past works via a horn-and-string laden chamber orchestra, vibraphone, electric guitar and his own probing horn.

Shun - s/t (Small Stone)

27 July 2021

Shun leader Matt Whitehead used to lead South Carolina’s Throttlerod, and while his new group Shun fields some of the former band’s ragged-but-right stoner metal, there’s a lot more going on here.

Renee & Jeremy - Whole Lotta Love

26 July 2021

Cover albums are normally predictable and unimaginative affairs, but not in the hands of Renee Stahl and Jeremy Toback. “Whole Lotta Love” is a gorgeous reimagining of some of the best known songs of the modern age and clever renders them into whispering, ambient folk songs whilst still retaining that special quality which made them so popular in the first place.

Blue Reality Quartet - s/t (Mahakala Music)

26 July 2021

With jazz’s long history of saxophone/drums duo albums, it was only a matter of time before some musicians decided to double up.

Blue and Broke - Night Shadows (Self-Released)

24 July 2021

Night Shadows isn’t above referencing pop culture or the long history of popular music, and by beautifully and effortlessly synthesizing both the high and the low the band is elevated to a living individual work of art.

Roy Brooks - Understanding (Reel to Real)

23 July 2021

Documenting a 1970 performance recorded by the Left Bank Jazz Society at Baltimore’s Famous Ballroom, the two-disk Understanding resurrects a magnificent Brooks gig from the vaults.

Where We Sleep - The Scars They Leave (Self-Released)

22 July 2021

Beth Rettig and Where We Sleep release their debut long-player, and it is explosive and enchanting

Orrin Evans - The Magic of Now (Smoke Sessions)

22 July 2021

Besides his piano, Evans wields the band as his instruments, knowing when to keep them in support and when to let them loose.

Michael Bisio/Kirk Knuffle/Fred Lonberg-Holm - The Art Spirit (ESP-Disk’)

21 July 2021

Inspired by and dedicated to nineteenth century American artist Robert Henri, The Art Spirit is clearly committed to Art For Art’s Sake.

Goldie & the Gingerbreads - Thinking About The Good Times - Complete Recordings 1964-1966 (Ace Records)

20 July 2021

Rock music’s premier all-female band get a long overdue retrospective.

The Idolizers - ConCretins (Rum Bar)

20 July 2021

A worthy follow-up to last year’s self-titled introductory EP, the Idolizers rip it up again on new EP ConCretins.

Greg Antista and the Lonely Streets - Under the Neon Heat (Primal Beat)

19 July 2021

There’s a lot of L.A. rock history in this band’s DNA.

Clifford/Wright - For All the Money in the World (Cliffsong Records)

18 July 2021

CCR legend Doug ‘Cosmo’ Clifford releases an extraordinary piece of work on August 27th, a collaboration with the late Steve Wright from the Greg Kihn Band

The Black Watch - Led Zeppelin Five (10th anniversary edition) (ATOM)

16 July 2021

Forever trumpeted within these virtual and physical pages as one of the greatest bands not enough people know about, The Black Watch celebrates the tenth anniversary of one of its best: Led Zeppelin Five.

Pluto Juice - s/t (Contagious Music)

15 July 2021

Led by acclaimed saxophonist Dayna Stephens and drummer Anthony Fung, Pluto Juice explores two concepts on its self-titled debut: space travel and the EWI, or electronic wind instrument.

French Girls - s/t (Rum Bar)

14 July 2021

Led by singer and bassist Che Beret, Arizona’s French Girls dig their guitars loud, their melodies sweet, and their rhythms pumpin’.

Peter Holsapple & Chris Stamey - Our Back Pages (Omnivore)

13 July 2021

In which our intrepid co-leaders of the dB’s revisit their back catalog in more stripped-down and intimate takes than the louder versions on record by the band.

Gary Craig - Yesterday Into Day (Self-Released)

12 July 2021

As time and aging are common themes throughout the album, it is fascinating to listen to an artist with a new perspective sing these songs written by his younger self.

Black Reuss - Metamorphosis (Black Reuss Music)

12 July 2021

Metamorphosis will appeal most of all to fans of the genre looking for something more intellectual than the standard fare.

Disturbios - s/t (Midnight Cruiser)

12 July 2021

At a mere twenty-five minutes, Disturbios may seem short on the surface, but the band makes the most of its timeframe and never misses a step.

Francie Conway - Staycation (Sunfish Music)

11 July 2021

Francie Conway continues on his divine path of excellence with “Staycation”

Josh Caterer - The Hideout Sessions (Pravda)

9 July 2021

He’s created something well worth hearing and not just for obsessive Smoking Popes fans.

Keshav Batish - Binaries in Cycle (Woven Strands)

9 July 2021

The son of a master sitar player and grandson of a Bollywood composer, drummer Keshav Batish brings worlds of experience to his music.

Los Chicos - 20 Years of Shakin’ Fat & Launching Shit by Medical Prescription (Rum Bar)

8 July 2021

The aesthetic is exactly what you’d expect – three chord romps that drag fifties rock & roll through a Nuggets filter, with some C&W and R&B seasoning – but this music depends more on personality and energy than originality.

Jacques Schwarz-Bart - Soné Ka-La 2: Odyssey (Enja)

7 July 2021

For Soné Ka-La 2: Odyssey, a sequel to his 2006 LP Soné Ka-La, Schwarz-Bart takes inspiration for the Gwoka traditions from his youth growing up in Guadeloupe.

Echo Us - The Windsong Spires (Absolute Probability)

6 July 2021

Like the primeval thunderstorms of Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring, the music of Echo Us scratches an ancient itch deep in the back of the listener’s subconscious.

Wanderlust - All a View (self-released)

6 July 2021

Like a lot of members of the early nineties alternarock nation, Wanderlust was and is a power pop band at heart.

Duck Baker - Confabulations (ESP-Disk')

5 July 2021

Confabulations collects duo and trio recordings made over the course of twenty-three years, and features players from the more adventurous side of the jazz spectrum for an album of uneasy listening.

Barry Goudreau's Engine Room - The Road (Self-Released)

4 July 2021

The legandary Boston guitarist returns with his Engine Room outfit, and stylishly follows up 2017’s Full Steam Ahead album

Atoms and Energy by Daniel Wylie's Cosmic Rough Riders

Daniel Wylie’s Cosmic Rough Riders - Atoms and Energy (Last Night From Glasgow)

4 July 2021

“Glasgow singer-songwriter Daniel Wylie and his regular musical cohorts (Neil Sturgeon, Johnny Smillie, Stu Kidd) have once again graced the ears of listeners with a beautiful new record, one released at the trailing end of a deadly pandemic.”

Wise John - A Wonderful World (Self-Released)

2 July 2021

For all of the seriousness behind the inspiration, Wise John handles it with a deft touch; sometimes with humor, sometimes with anger, and sometimes with a hint of naivety.

Lucy Dacus

Lucy Dacus – Home Video (Matador)

2 July 2021

A journey through the past stirs up heavy memories.

William Parker - Mayan Space Station/Painters Winter (AUM Fidelity)

2 July 2021

Over nearly five decades of service, bassist and composer William Parker has earned the title legend.

Vince Mendoza - Freedom Over Everything (Modern)

1 July 2021

Inspired by the last several years of national crisis and political turmoil, Freedom Over Everything finds him using the Czech National Symphony Orchestra as the main vehicle for his compositions, with guests drawn from other musical worlds.

Patrick Ames - The Virtualistics (Self-Released)

30 June 2021

The Virtualistics is undoubtedly a product of the COVID age, but it is also a light at the end of the tunnel.

The Neighborhoods - Last Known Address (Tamper Proof Music)

30 June 2021

While it’s no surprise, given the nearly forty years of experience these guys have making music, the consistent level of craft and attention to detail never fail to impress.

Jason Nazary - Spring Collection (We Jazz)

29 June 2021

Drummer Jason Nazary has a resumé that glides all over the map, from the indie rock of Bear in Heaven to the avant-jazz of Anteloper to side person work with the likes of jazz musicians Darius Jones and Noah Kaplan.

Vitamin - Recordings 1981 (Don Giovanni)

28 June 2021

Included are 4 studio tracks and 9 live tracks, all among the best American no wave/post-punk material of the era.

J.P. Shilo - Jubjoté (Heavy Machinery)

28 June 2021

J.P. Shilo has been around the block a few times, as leader of atmospheric instrumentalists Hungry Ghosts, member of the Black-Eyed Susans, associate of Mick Harvey, Rowland S. Howard, the Triffids and more. Jubjoté, however, may be his most unusual project yet.

Ad Vanderveen - Release (Self-Released)

27 June 2021

Release is one the truest, most mature accounts in contemporary folk of what it means to struggle, to persevere, or to just get by.

Ellen Foley - Fighting Words (Self-Released)

27 June 2021

Ellen Foley returns, and she means buisness on her latest album ‘Fighting Words’

The Music Therapy Experiment - Art and Science

25 June 2021

The Music Therapy Experiment is a place where mental health, music therapy, and great sonic vibes co-exist and their latest release is a gorgeous affair that goes by the name of Art and Science. Not just great songs but technically brilliant playing and some exceptional wordplay and punning too.

Split Single - Amplificado (Inside Outside)

25 June 2021

Joined by stalwart drummer Jon Wurster and ex-*R.E.M.* bassist Mike Mills, Narducy essays his usual approach: taking pop hooks, witty lyrics and punk energy, and turning it all into something more than mere power pop.

Sleater-Kinney - Path Of Wellness (Mom + Pop)

25 June 2021

Sleater-Kinney return with an album that defies expectations, and proves how they will not simply disappear.

Garbage - No Gods No Masters (Infectious Music)

24 June 2021

Garbage release album #7, a statement of consistency that displays a heavy amount of social consciousness

Marc Ribot’s Ceramic Dog - Hope (Northern Spy)

24 June 2021

Guitarist, singer and songwriter Marc Ribot has been a tear of late – his last pair of albums, Ceramic Dog’s YRU Still Here? and his own Songs of Resistance 1942-2018 were both overt broadsides against the bow of the then-presidential administration. Recorded with the Dog (AKA drummer Ches Smith and bassist/jack-of-all-trades Shahzad Ismaily), Hope continues the trend, reflecting the struggles of living through the pandemic.