Fall Releases

A few lines on a lot of new albums

As a great chief once said, "From a marketing perspective, you don't launch a new product in August." Thus a heapin' slate of new releases from your favorite artists is set for later this fall. A minor sampling:

Interpol continues to beat the "Curse of Ian Curtis" in that their singer, Paul Banks, has not committed suicide, yet. On Antics, the cribbed melodic gloom continues, gloriously.

An unmastered, title-less version of the forthcoming Blood Brothers album Crimes has somehow leaked onto the interweb! Their V2 debut finds them applying some of that hardcore rage to the Administration in righteous punk fashion.

Akron, Ohio's the Black Keys are all about the raw blues shit on the impressive Rubber Factory, demonstrating once and for all that any Black Crowes jokes are just plain unfair. Undoubtedly, they've made their label, Fat Possum, proud with this follow-up to Thickfreakness.

Covers are the raison d'etre on She Loves You, the late-August opus from the Twilight Singers. There's actually a version of "A Love Supreme" on it, but don't get too excited--it's two minutes long.

The Pixies catalog gets a reworking on Frank Black Francis and Two Pale Boys. Quirky, tuba-heavy arrangements are the order of the day, courtesy of Mr. Charles Thompson himself, plus two of David Thomas' sidemen on this soon-to-be-forgotten novelty record.

Giant Sand's first full-length in almost five years hits finer record stores on Sept. 14. ...Is All Over the Map typifies the genre-hopping we've come to expect from Gelb & Co. --baroque pop, bossa nova, desert twang and a bizarro cover version of "Anarchy in the U.K." with a kid on vocals.

For the second time in 2004, there's a new album on the way from Devendra Banhart. Nino Rojo advances the "new folk" idiom yet further; perhaps soon Banhart will take up ukulele, and he and Joanna Newsom will get married on The Tonight Show.

Elliot Smith's From a Basement on a Hill will no doubt have fans poring over lyrics for clues to his tragic suicide. Others may be looking to validate their suspicion that Smith didn't die by his own hand.

Karate depart from the "where are they now?" file, however briefly, with a new, somewhat bluesy approach to their indie rock bailiwick. Guitar parts on Pockets will occasionally remind one of Stevie Ray Vaughn or Hendrix, if they didn't really know how to play.

The opening salvo in the fall garage wars was fired by the Hives just two weeks ago; look for Tyrannosaurus Hives to make them such MTV staples that you'll pine for the days when they were merely obnoxious sorta-knowns. Your move, The Kills.

Having built a new studio called "Orifice," The Faint's Sept. 14 release is, naturally, Wet From Birth. But knowing that about the studio makes you kinda say "ick!," doesn't it?

Some find the "U.K. gair-oj (that's "garage," for people without the patience for phonetics)" sound to be harsh and amelodic. However you feel, one thing is certain: Dizzee Rascal proves with Showtime that just because he's British doesn't mean he can't rival the self-referential skillz of American MCs.

Rilo Kiley gets More Adventurous next week. Apparently that means "indistinguishable from Sixpence None the Richer."

Announce the end of your fall party in style with the Sub Pop debut of Wolf Eyes, entitled Burned Mind. This album makes the Locust wet themselves from sheer terror.

The absolutely fantastic Summer in Abbadon, by Pinback, hits the stores in October. Undoubtedly, they'll win the Grammy for Overt Slint Reference of the Year.

Har Mar Superstar unleashes The Handler in mid-September, fresh off his star turn as "Dancin' Rick" in Starsky and Hutch. We all get called to the carpet for "DUI"--Dialing Under the Influence, which is the somewhat uneven first single.

Real Gone is the title of Tom Waits' scheduled October release. Apparently, a staple of his sonic repertoire is "real gone," too--there is not a note of piano to be found.

The reworked SMiLE, dormant for more than 30 years, finally sees the light of day in September. Long a bootleg Beach Boys classic, Brian Wilson recently finished the album that many consider to be superior to Pet Sounds.

Either The Beast and Dragon Are Adored or Romeo's Apprentice will be the title of the newest Spoon joint. If the demos at the band's Web site are any indication, it'll undoubtedly be heralded as a masterpiece.

Guided By Voices release their last official album, Half Smiles of the Decomposed, later this month. Someone had to put an end to Bob Pollard's prolixity--best that it was him.

A state of critical mass seems imminent for Ted Leo and His Pharmacists. 2002's Hearts of Oak propelled the band on a trajectory that puts their October album, Shake the Sheets, in the "hotly anticipated" category all over the land, and deservedly so--it rocks, man!

Split Lip Rayfield, those maniacal gas-tank playing maniacs, return at the end of September with I Should Have Seen It Coming. Look for well-crafted songs and a zydeco influence. (It was recorded in New Orleans.)

And there you have it--factoids about a buncha new music. And they dare call newspapers "fishwrap." Pish Posh.

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