Every Monday, Ghettoblaster is looking back to new albums released the previous week. Below you’ll find several albums released on Friday April 15th that we believe are definitely worth a listen.
Kevin Morby – Singing Saw (Dead Oceans)
Singing Saw combines straightforward folk rock with a triumphant horn section and gospel leaning backing vocals, all while being overseen by the cool, Bob Dylan-esque singing and songwriting of 28 year old music veteran Kevin Morby. Having released several albums as a member of Woods, a couple as a member of Babies, and now his third as a solo artist, Morby knows how to write really engaging music at this point. Singing Saw covers a lot of ground lyrically, from personal ruminations to responding to police brutality, yet the songs always stay grounded. All that aside, this is just a great sounding folk rock album, which is a joy to listen to.
Sturgill Simpson – A Sailor’s Guide to Earth (Atlantic Records)
“Hello my son, welcome to Earth / May not be my last, but you’ll always be my first” is the lovely opening lyric of A Sailor’s Guide to Earth, the incredibly personal new album from country artist Sturgill Simpson. This album is a letter to his newborn son and finds Simpson equally dispensing advice and poetically describing his immense love for the newest addition to his life. The country sound on the album generally falls into three categories: beautiful orchestral country, straightforward modern country rock and rollicking country complete with an awesome horn section. Also, he impeccably covers Nirvana’s “In Bloom.” This is all in just nine songs in under 40 minutes, making it a lean and remarkable listen.
PJ Harvey – The Hope Six Demolition Project (Island Records)
The story of PJ Harvey’s The Hope Six Demolition Project is at least as interesting as the resulting album, if not more. Harvey traveled to Afghanistan, Kosovo and Washington D.C. to be inspired for her new album. The Hope Six Demolition Project could therefore be described as journalistic rock music. A lot of her observations have been met with criticism, especially surrounding the song “The Community of Hope.” Lyrically this album is quite dour with not much hope being offered for the state of our world, which is a hard pill to swallow if you reside in a neighborhood Harvey is singing so negatively about. Yet, there is something admirable about presenting an unfiltered, outsider perspective over engaging, messy and rough alternative rock music. This is all around a difficult album to engage, yet a rewarding one for those who spend time with it.
Other Noteworthy Releases
The Coathangers – Nosebleed Weekend (Suicide Squeeze)
Mr. Lif – Don’t Look Down (Mello Music Group)
Ashley Shadow – Ashley Shadow (felte)